“Can We Not Grow Up?”: A Thought On Progression in Meaningful Game Design

Before I begin, I want to take a brief moment to share my insights on life itself first.

You’ve probably asked yourself this question as well: why can’t we grow backwards and be the younger self?

Growing up is actually not bad. As time goes by, you grow physically stronger, and mentally more mature. You get to learn a lot of stuff, understand things in different ways, and most importantly, from all the things that you’ve taken and absorbed from the world, you form your own identity. That’s something no-one’s going to take away from you.

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An Unsung War: The Missing Of China and Japan In Modern WWII Games

After taking a gigantic leap back to the First Great War, the Battlefield franchise finally returns to where the series actually started – World War II. While many criticized the game of its unoriginal online gameplay compared to its predecessor Battlefield I, I am much more disappointed, and therefore curious, of the absence of the Sino-Japanese War.

In 1937, soon after the Marco Polo Bridge Incident, Japanese Forces launched a full-scale invasion on China, and quickly they’ve captured major cities such as Shanghai and Nanjing. The Chinese Forces did not see its counterattack until 1939, and since then the conflict remained stalemate until the Attack on Pearl Harbor, which led the US to officially join the great war.

It is not difficult to understand why World War II gets a lot of attention, even after three decades: it is a gigantic collection of tragedies, heroism and legends of blood and tears. This makes it even more bizarre to see the Asian Theater under-represented in public media, especially in the market. What happened? Why did no-one make a video game on this theme?

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“Notice Me Jeff” Side-Project

As my second semester here at the CMU ETC slowly rolls out, I decided to do gather some friends and do something on our own.

In short, we decided to make our own Overwatch hero, his/her story, abilities and even a model and playable demo. We don’t know how long this will take, or even if this project will see its completion, but since we all love Overwatch, I think this is a way to show how much we’re into game design just as how much we love the game.

So, fingers crossed, and stay tuned!

Oh yes and the name……I’ll be honest, I’m trying to get us into Blizzard.

“Unto The Horizon” Postmortem – Week 2

Hello! You’re at the week 2 postmortem for “Unto the Horizon”, an ETC BVW Round 4 project at Carnegie Mellon University. Here’s a quick glance of what we did for week 1:

  • Round 4 is a story-telling round.
  • We’re using the Cave Autonomous Virtual Environment (CAVE) room. It is a room with 3 big screens and a moving floor.
  • We’re telling a story about launching a rocket. We aim to invoke emotions of accomplishment and the joy that comes with it.
  • It’s an asymmetrical experience: One team will be in the CAVE as pilots, and the other team in another space as Mission Control. Plays like Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes.
  • Feedback: Lack of story, no interest curve, not intense enough.

You’re always welcome to go back to the previous blog post to know more about this project! Without further or due, let’s begin our week 2 development!

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“Unto The Horizon” Postmortem – Week 1

Hello, commander! You have arrived at the postmortem blog for “Unto the Horizon”, an ETC BVW Round 4 project. BVW, acronym for Building Virtual Worlds, is a class taught at the Entertainment Technology Center (ETC), where students go through 5 rounds of distinctly themed projects and learn game development fundamentals and soft skills such as cooperation and communication.

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“Hero, RUN!” Postmortem

Hi! And welcome to the postmortem of “Hero, RUN!”. This project is a 8-week long school project, and I’d like to give a big shout out to Ian Chang and Marvin Yang: without them this project would never be possible.

To begin with, we started out with nothing but one requirement: make a VR / AR game. For us, there wasn’t really a debate on whether we should go with VR or AR; we were lucky to have TWO HTC Vives, so it really wasn’t some sort of a hard decision. 

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“The Poorly-lit Exploration Project” Postmortem: 3

Welcome back to another postmortem post for TPEP……this name is too long to input, I’ll change a name next time. Last time we talked about audio and subtitles. They helped building the story of the game, and added color and liveliness to the whole environment.

In this final post, we’ll go into some other features in the game, including the items to be picked, the terrain and some optimization.

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“The Poorly-lit Exploration Project” Postmortem: 2

Last time, we mentioned…

  • What this project is: This is an independent project to push my skills further. The goal is to pickup 20 items, invoke particle systems and tell a simple story.
  • Setting Up: I’ve decided that the story should take place in the remains of a deserted village, and the protagonist is revealed with her past, and her destiny as she explores the ruins.
  • Character: How I approached the mechanism to control our character.

So, without further ado, let’s continue.

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“The Poorly-lit Exploration Project” Postmortem: 1

“The Poorly-lit Exploration Project” was an independent project set out to push my own limits and learn new knowledge in Unity.
My primary objective was to pick up at least 20 objects, and invoke a particle system whenever the player picks them up. I also wanted to test my skills as a narrative design, so my other goal is to tell a simple story through this experience.

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