Destroy The World: Game Jam Game
November 17, 2013 - Interactive
This past weekend, my friend Cory and I were at a big game jam event in Vancouver, hosted by Full Indie. The event was a ton of fun and we managed to put together a pretty fun game from the event theme “Evil Genius”.
Our game, “Destroy the World: The Revenge of Professor Menace”, is a meditative physics-based game inspired by 1950s sci-fi movies. Your goal is to use a super magnet to repel incoming asteroids away from the Earth, only to crash them into each other, at which point they will merge to become larger asteroids. Ultimately you’re trying to merge all the asteroids into a super asteroid which will destroy the world, but you don’t want it to collide before then or you’ll need to start from scratch.
I coded the game in Unity3d and created all the audio assets. Cory took care of the 2D visual graphics as we designed the game together. I was really excited to theme it with 1950s sci-fi because it suddenly made the game way more fun and aesthetically interesting. I scripted flickering light into every element of the game to create the effect of an old film reel as well as faking scratches on the film with some erratically and randomly jittering lines. The soundtrack especially added a lot for me, using the classic The Day the Earth Stood Still as reference, I tried to create a dark and eerie soundtrack with different elements to punctuate events during the game. The pitch fluctuations in the score were tied in script to the visual fluctuations, the the score is somewhat procedurally generated in a sense.
Overall I’m really pleased with what the two of us achieved in a single weekend, and we’ll be looking at porting the game to mobile devices in the near future as a free download.
Play it in your browser right now! Destroy the World!
Oh Game Jam
November 6, 2013 - Interactive
Over the last weekend I learned about an online game jam where the idea was to make a game during the extra hour added for daylight savings time. So the jam would take place on Sunday morning from 2am to 2am, thus 0h. My friend Cory and I decided to both try making our own games during this time. I had an initial concept that didn’t function as expected after the first 15 minutes so I quickly scrambled to get something mildly entertaining together. The end result was a ‘game’ I dubbed Crazy Tower. There’s not much of a point to the game but I still think it has some appeal because of the random physics used. Built in Unity3d in under an hour, you can play the game in your browser here: Crazy Tower
Sound for Cinematheque Intro Sequence
November 1, 2013 - Music
My awesome talented friends over at Combination Films asked if I’d be interested in doing sound/music for an intro sequence that will play before every film at the Pacific Cinematheque in downtown Vancouver. It was a very cool opportunity. I can’t wait to see/hear it on the big screen.
Soul Power now available for Android
October 31, 2013 - Interactive
Play Soul Power today on your android device! iPhone, PC and Ouya versions coming in the next couple weeks…
Soul Power: The Soundtrack
October 14, 2013 - Music
The game isn’t quite ready yet, but here’s the finished soundtrack. I was fortunate to have a fellow sound-designer, Brent Silk, master all the tracks for me.
Ludum Dare 27 – Quantum Breach
August 30, 2013 - Interactive
Last weekend I teamed up with a couple of old colleagues to make a game for Ludum Dare 27. For those who aren’t familiar with Ludum Dare (as I was until only recently), it’s a big online competition/jam where all participants must create some sort of video game from scratch in only 48-72 hours. I was extremely excited about the theme “10 seconds”, and I think we created an exciting and unique game experience with the time that we had.
Quantum Breach is a space shooter with a twist or two. One player controls the ship and shoots alien craft while the second player must recharge shields or ammunition while keeping an eye on both and acting quickly to fix hull breaches. In addition to this mechanic, keeping to the theme of “10 seconds”, both players switch roles every ten seconds. It’s a bit of a confusing and jarring event for beginners but it quickly encourages strong communication between both players to manage the inevitable transitions.
I split programming duties with my friend Blair, and using Unity3D and dropbox we managed to get everything together well under the deadline. It was a great experience and I’m looking forward to the next Ludum Dare in December.
Try playing Quantum Breach here!
Musical Experimentation for Soul Power
August 1, 2013 - Interactive
I’ve taken a bit of a break from all other aspects of the game development to focus on the music for the game. I wanted to have two unique tracks for each world (8), which will consist of a slower overworld piece and a faster mission piece. In about a week I think I’ve got close to around half of what I’ll need. The process has been really interesting.
I’ve only ever had a rough idea of the type of instrumentation I’d want to use, (guitar and bass), and from there it’s been a lot of experimentation. I’ve been doing everything in ~2 minute compositions, with constant variations throughout each track. In the end I’ll be choosing my favorite sections and editing them down into < 30 second loops for use in the game. Because of my mobile target platform I have to keep file size down so I'm hopeful that I can cram everything in there.
It’s been extremely liberating being able to work in short compositions with no regard for my usual song structure approach. I’m not sure yet how the music works as a game soundtrack but I’m fine with going an unconventional route since the visuals have similarly been a little experimental as well.
Game Jam Fun with Audio
July 16, 2013 - Music
This past weekend I attended the iamagamer game jam, where all teams were tasked with making a game in 48 hours with a strong female lead. I had signed up with a team to do their audio, but I ended up helping 4 other teams with their music/sound needs as well. It was my first time using my new(old) macbook and had a few technical difficulties but was also super excited to be able to use the excellent Sforzando (.sfz player) to play with all the awesome orchestral sample from the Sonatina collection. I ended up doing a range of different styles and uploaded most of it to my soundcloud.
“Soul Power” game development
July 5, 2013 - Interactive
For almost a month now I’ve been working on a new solo project, making an entire video game. I’m using the Unity3D engine and I’ve been having a great time learning lots about the many tasks involved in making a game. The game is still in mid-development so I won’t bother saying too much more about it now, but I’ve also set up a website to follow the process as it goes. Check out Ghost Time Games for more info.
The last thing I do: A New EP
May 23, 2013 - Music
Not actually the last thing I’ll do…
The latest EP borrows some threads from my 2011 Cut That Cut Out album. Starting every song with two bass tracks and two guitar tracks was a big part of the process, which seems to work really well for me to get the music down.
This EP also marks the first time I’ve used any extra vocalists on my tracks. I think it adds a lot and I’ll definitely try to do it again next time as well.