Week six update:
After doing some internal playtests on our first build with stretchy and jello man, we realized that instead of designing from character to character, we should try to establish a framework for these characters to begin to fit in.
Thus, in week six we backtracked a little bit, deciding to first create a basic basketball game with which we could begin to push and pull on design elements to see what superpowers would work and how they could be implemented. For this baseline basketball game, we decided to break down NBA Jam – looking at aspects of it’s gameplay that we could simplify or riff off of.
Artwise, we are still exploring possible styles and animation that will fit our project scope. We investigated both 2D sprites as well as 3D models (animated in a sprite style).
As a way to block out these key poses for our prototype, our artist Healthy, drew the basic states we foresee our players going through as they play – idle, jumping, passing, running, and shooting.
From a programming standpoint, all hands were on deck to get the prototype out for Friday (2/22). Our main programmer, Swapnil implemented the core gameplay elements into the game, allowing the scripts to be modified and tweaked later on by our designers, Sally and Julian. This led to an efficient workflow where we were able to quickly test new features.
On Thursday, (2/21) we had our client meeting where we discussed this design path. Unfortunately, we were off the mark with regards to what they wanted us to be doing. Instead of creating a more traditional basketball game, our client encouraged us to push the boundaries and think outside the box more.
Thus, we’ve decided to pivot away from “basketball with superheroes,” and investigate more novel ideas focusing on just a few aspects of basketball. The only constraints we have now are a ball and a hoop – tying the game’s basic theming and essence back to basketball in some way.