Capstone Report Card – Week 1

08.28.2016 - 09.04.2016

What I was supposed to work on

This week I was tasked to integrate the tiling system into Unity, write out the story beats for the game, and draw up the storyboards/screen flow for the menu screen and tutorial level.

What I did work on

I did not do anything with the tiling system currently. From what I can tell, it is primarily linked to the visuals so it’ll be harder for me to implement it until I can get some assets to put into it.

I did not work on the storyboards/screen/game flow boards at all, unfortunately. This was entirely my fault for being lazy, which I will expand on later.

I ended up working on was the level manager and intro sequence/cutscene handler for the game. I now have a system in the Unity project that displays a temporary image for me when the level starts for a few seconds before starting the game control proper. I have yet to incorporate this for “outro” sequences.

I have currently only gone through about one third, perhaps one half, of the overall story arc of the game (can be viewed here). I am having trouble finding a way to just write out what happens with each event because so much of the story comes from the interactions between the two characters rather than any deliberate, scripted events.

Perhaps instead of doing “arcs” or “events”, I can describe the emotional state of the two characters at the current point in the story and what events caused that to happen since seeing each other last, or actually describe what happened between each level and how that affects the conversations they have in the beginning. Things like Right worrying a lot about his daughter, Left constantly hearing his family and friends regurgitate government propaganda causing him to feel conflicted in talking with Right, Right torn between wanting to hate Left for being complicit in harming his people (and by extension his daughter) or not wanting to cause anymore more hurt than necessary.

What went wrong and what I’m doing about it

In all honestly, I did not earnestly start working on the capstone stuff until Wednesday. I was being completely lazy and undisciplined in my approach to working on it. I have a habit of not doing anything when I have nothing to do for the whole day like Friday thru Monday when I have no classes or wednesdays when my classes end extremely early in the day, and couple that with being lazy in my apartment with a comfortable bed, it prevents me from sitting down and tackling the things I need to tackle.

I am making sure I force myself to stay out of the apartment so I’m forced into an environment that prevents me from being distracted from bad habits.

I am also making sure that I take care of any outside homework ASAP, at a minimum doing them when I’m not in a position to fully work on capstone tasks. Currently it is only weekly worksheets for Linear Algebra and sketching assignments for Drawing Foundations with Digital Logic labs coming up soon. Ironically it might help me with capstone work as focusing on the homework would mean that I’m putting myself in an environment to work, so I usually start working on capstone work when I’m “in the zone” so to speak.

What’s next (09.04.2016 – 09.11.2016)

This time around I will for sure create the story/screen/game flow board for the menu and tutorial sections. This should help me with the overall story beats of the game. IF I am able to, I can go on to the first and second levels as well.

I will also incorporate the outro image into the current level manager (which shouldn’t be too hard). I will also make it so that the end of the level will load up the next level rather than restart completely (with “enter”, or another key, being a debug reset) with the intro sequences and everything else.

If I am able to, I will also look into making certain obstacles manipulate the character to allow for the character to go up and down different levels (for now just instantly teleport). I will perhaps utilize a “lane” system, where anything between 0 and 20 in the y-axis is “ground”, 20-40 is “level 1”, 40-60” is level 2, and so on (negative numbers as well), so I just move the player in between those levels.

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