Cycle 2 – Vincent Bornaghi – Reflection

Professional Development and Practice

This second game provided another opportunity for me to learn more about Unity and the quirks of programming. Ironically I believe I actually had a headstart for this Cycle, the focus appeared to be more on the art side of things, making functional UI’s and what not. These are all things that I either do normally (3D modelling being my side hobby), or had done in the previous Cycle in order to test myself. As such I was able to reuse a lot of my previous assets for this game and tweak them slightly to better suit this style of game.

And the style of game was similar the old ‘Crazy Taxi’ game on the Nintendo GameCube. A game that my brother and I spent many, many hours on and had countless moments of fun. 15 years ago I never could have imagined that I’d be attempting to MAKE my own twist on this classic game. Because of my history with the game, I was really enthusiastic coming into this assessment and had grand ideas for my game. However I soon discovered it would not be a piece of cake.

I attempted to create everything I needed for a functional game from scratch and soon realised that this was far beyond my skillset. Being the type of person I am, I tried every reasonable avenue before having to resort to using 3rd party assets from Unity, the Asset Store or elsewhere. Unfortunately this was my biggest downfall for this Cycle. Because of my lack of ability in being able to create complex things such as a realistic vehicle controller, I wasted so much time getting around it that at the end of it all; I had no time for anything else. Most of the 3D models that I would have normally created, I had to use from 3rd party sources because I simply could not do everything that I wished to do if I didn’t. From this aspect I’m quite disappointed about this and wish I had spent more time one what I knew I could do and not what I didn’t.

What Have I Learnt About the Other Majors?

This cycle is further pushing me away from my old mindset of ‘programming is awful and I hate it’. One could hardly say that programming is fun, but I find the logic enjoyable, if somewhat frustrating at times. However I would never even consider changing majors from animation to programming. I’ve always enjoyed games design, it was quite a decision for me to chose animation over that, so delving into it to create these games is a really nice experience. Conceptualising and creating a game world for example is something that I’ve discovered that I love doing… maybe a bit too much considering the amount of time I spent on it!

Working Independently

I managed to improve over the last cycle in terms of programming quite substantially. There were still some things I wish that I’d completed for my game, these weren’t finished mainly due to my poor time-management, but overall I encountered virtually 0 errors in my work. I had an easy time solving the few issues that came up and spent no time whatsoever browsing forums for aid. This newfound ability to be able to resolve programming problems was really satisfying and makes me look forward to the next cycle, and hopefully expanding my skillset.

Ethical Considerations

There is one small ethical issue in my game that takes place around the central theme that is ‘natural disaster’. This could cause issues with disaster victims who have been traumatised by such events. However a simple warning, or more detailed introduction, would suffice as a warning for such potential issues. Some minor motion sickness could also occur from the rapid, first-person movement.

Vincent Bornaghi – N9463020

Cycle 2 – Dylan Van Beek – Reflection

Through the process of this task my pre-existing knowledge of how unity works came into use when creating the Gameworld and the scripts to run actions within the world.  Most of the simpler tasks such as movement, importing assets and terrain construction had been done before, and hence could be completed without much assistance from Google or other means.  However, a lot of the scripting for the pickup and particle as well as instantiating objects was relatively new and difficult, but after researching on google was found to be quite interesting.  Other elements such as adding textures and standard assets were simple enough to complete and didn’t take much time after watching tutorials.  Furthermore, the biggest challenge in this task was trying to get timers to work, as “time.DeltaTime” is a function which I was not used to and took me a while to grasp.  Overall this mini game development was very useful in filling gaps in my knowledge in unity and proved to be quite fun.

Throughout the team exercises more information on the background of team members were discovered, although I believe it wasn’t capitalised on as much as it could have been.  For example, Vincent can animate/model but this wasn’t used to its full advantage in our project.  Although, the final product is believed work without this extra help, however, for the final development this might be considered a bit more.  As team members were cooperative and willing to change/adapt and converge/diverge ideas as they came from other members, teamwork was fluid and flowed smoothly, without any need for interventions or team management strategies.  Collaborative work was mostly completed in workshops, and the establishment of communication allowed for outer and further teamwork.  It is believed all members performed their tasks, and we mingled quite well.  All feedback from every member was considered, and responses to feedback if it didn’t work was explained so that all members were on board with what was happening.

As I am interested in game design, I found it very easy to stay motivated to complete tasks and prototypes.  In team scenarios, individual work was found to be balanced evenly between members and mostly completed in workshops, with some small completion work being done in my spare time.  In the individual work, I was happy with the gaps that I learnt from in this area of unity and I believe it will help greatly in the future as I now feel much more comfortable with the engine.

This game is designed to be fun and exhilarating, playing on the chaotic nature of a storm to rescue and race around a torn apart city to collect and save people and bring them to a safe zone.  Henceforth the main quality of life that it may bring is enjoyment and time well spent playing this game.

Cycle 2 – Joseph Koppe – Reflection

While reflecting about my experiences while I was creating the second game, I felt more comfortable within this task.  I felt as though I enjoyed this task thoroughly compared to mini-game one, and for that reason I feel my skills within unity have improved significantly.  I feel as though I still have a significant limitation in programming for video games, but I genuinely get a lift out of modelling objects and landscape.  This task really helped put things into perspective with my degree, as I was discouraged in creating games from mini-game 1 – so much so that I considered seeking counselling and switching degrees.  I still have more internal questions regarding how games are made, such as creating a texture and the hidden layers within unity.  And I believe that I will have more learning obstacles and mistakes that will let me understand and grow in my ability to make a game.

I learnt about some of the applications of the other majors in the degree – particularly regarding how modelling through blender actually comes into fruition with the unity engine.  Coincidentally I am taking an animation subject simultaneously; which has allowed me to put a bit of effort into modelling some objects within my game.  I haven’t learnt enough about programming to be confident in writing my own scripts with ease, and I generally seek advice from my teammates and online whenever I can.   I think although my teammates and I have completed a lot of the same subjects, our interests in particular areas are spurring the development process by using each other’s skills.

In my individual work I created a model for the buildings that populated my game world.  It was very satisfying to see something you had sculpted in a different piece of software and place it into unity and use it as an asset.  The entire process of creating and designing a game world was incredibly enjoyable and something that I will look forward to in the future.  I felt as though this helped me put my original plans and beliefs with my university degree into perspective, and proved amongst other things that my intuition about what work I enjoy is correct.

During this task we were asked to choose a news article as inspiration for our game.  I think while there are ethical issues regarding creating content that is based on recent events, our game is fine because it isn’t trying to emulate that specific moment in time – the subject matter was taken, obscured and gamified enough to the extent that we don’t attribute it to the original topic, let alone people that it would potentially offend.  But for the most part I think making light of a recent tragedy must be done very tactfully, and it shouldn’t offend the majority of the people who play it.