Tamgaotchi Progress – Week 2

Here’s the prototype for this week. Mostly just the prototype for the ‘follower’ minigame.

My original deadline for the week:
By Nov 22: prototype & playtest minigames for likes + followers, add to the storyboard

The first change I made was to the placement of the like & follow counts to solve the problem with entering and exiting. By having the counts at the bottom of the screen, I avoided conflicts with my exit buttons at the top of the screen.

Next I got to work on prototyping ideas for the minigames. My first concept was a scroll based game where you had to like photos as they passed. I didn’t love this, but here’s where it ended up. Then I wanted to make something involving the user posting a photo, so I tried experimenting with how file uploading worked. I ended up finding this example that was the most basic way to grab a photo from a user and preview it. I didn’t need any uploading to a server, so this idea would do. I didn’t totally get how it was all working, but I managed to get the image over to a p5Image object only by first placing the image in an html element. From there, I could extract the url from the element and load it in to the p5 object – it didn’t work when I tried to load the image url directly on upload, don’t ask me why. Here’s that test.

I went back to my “followers” mini game ideas and made a pointless click game where you would hit buttons (likes, follows) and randomly get new followers as a result. Here’s the prototype.

I was more or less happy with this, so I began integrating it into my code. I decided to keep most of the game logic in a separate file, but I still had to manage exit/entrance in the main code, as well as provide a game setup function to be called in my main setup.

function followGame(){
if(mouseIsPressed && mouseY < 40 && mouseX < 40) { followGameActive = false; stretchy.visible = true; deleteFollowerGameSprites(); } else followGamePlay(); } else if(mouseIsPressed && mouseY > height- 100 && mouseX < 100){ followGameActive = true; stretchy.visible = false; } } ... function followGamePlay() { if(frameCount % 10 == 0) createRandomSprites(); followGameCollisionCheck(); drawSprites(); //necessary? updateFollowScore(); }

I also did some research into how I might do a "dm scene" where the character goes online to message someone. I found this codepen that's fairly similar to how I would want it to work, minus some of the visual flair. I was hesitant to get into SASS and copy this code but the way it handles faking a conversation was what I had in mind.

So this was all well and good, but I've started to take a step back and think about what I am doing. I feel behind, and with only 2 weeks left, I need to focus on the core experience. Realistically, it's unclear I will add more to the story then what is there now. So I have to be comfortable finishing only up to the end of the "wanderer" scene. And even if I do more, if the beginning of the game isn't solid, no one will stick around for the rest of it. So that brought me to the visuals and context. How will I give a user context? Will they get that this tamagotchi is a social media avatar living in their phone? And what does each minigame convey? Do they add something to the experience?

A few things became clear:
1. I really need to develop the start 'create your profile' screen so that I can give the user proper context.
2. I should make the visuals of the main tamagotchi screen reference a phone and/or the social media context more.
3. I need to nail down the posting game and build it!!

I've started brainstorming concepts for how the new main screen would look:

modeled more so after instagram. the follow game is integrated in (so no separate screen) and the photo button takes you to a posting flow

In addition, I'm getting Gabriel Brasil to help with visuals for my wanderer scene. I need to create a list of characters for him to draw and I need to create assets for the 'man in a box' effect I came up with last week. I did a quick test of how that effect might work, which I'm not totally happy with; I would like to figure out how to modify the frame rate of the animation but have yet to get it to work.

So for this week, I'd give myself a 50% - perhaps a bit harsh, but I only fully prototyped one mini game and I didn't add to my storyboard. So my updated timeline is now:

By Monday, Nov 27: Character list for wanderer scene, update the starting screens and the minigame entrance/exit styles. Integrate v1 of the "posting game". Make any visual changes that stem from updating the setup for the main screen.

Wed, Nov 29: In class playtesting

By Friday, Dec 1: Get final character drawings from Gabriel, start integration process. Make improvements from playtesting

Then it is a mad dash til the 6th to make any other changes. If I have time, I'll add more scenes to the story.

Posted in ICM

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