Games For Health, Special Topics Class, Squirrel Game.
This is a class which has been one of my rather interesting ventures into game design. It has allowed me to open my understanding of medical care and better understand the more serious applications of Game Design.
Instructed by Dr Paul Diefenbach, the class happens once a week and is divided into two parts. The first half is supervised by a medical professional or an expert in a field relevant to medical technology and the second half was based on getting feedback for our game. We primarily used EnableGames libraries for movement support for the joints we targeted.
The first game we worked on was based on body tracking an in-game squirrel character and was targeted toward kids (aged 8-10 years old) with lower body disabilities like diplegia. The goal was to develop a customizable physical therapy experience for patients and the targeted movement was the lateral bending of the hips.
The final presentation for the squirrel game
I will be updating this space further sharing my updates with the current project we are working on. It is a VR experience based on art therapy around designing safe spaces.
The Last Sky, Little Guy Games, Toronto, Ontario, September 2017-March 2018
Little Guy Games was an exciting opportunity for me to take a step into the gaming industry. I interned in Toronto for 6 months and got valuable lessons in narrative and game design. The Last Sky (TLS) is an adventure puzzle game about overcoming the past through one single dream about death. The protagonist, Jake, is a PTSD war veteran. Our aim was to make the player contemplate their own perception of reality through an abstract, mystic world. Their interactions emulate a calming, dreamlike atmosphere using an emotional story to deliver an intricately designed journey of Jake’s self-healing. To quote my supervisor and CEO of TLS, Tom Frencel about the game – “It is like the Japanese art of Kintsukuroi, the realization that the piece can be beautiful even after being broken. ” Through a game about chaos, healing and achieving an emotional balance, I learned a lot about how complicated a human brain is and the true consequences of trauma.
My work related to narrative design involved writing dialogue, streamlining the narrative gameplay and working with reactive story objects. I also worked on debugging and scripting certain features and designed a zodiac puzzle related to constellations.
Factory Mayhem, GMAP260 Final Project, Spring 2018
Factory Mayhem was another great experience for me to learn more about game development. This was an extremely tight, 5-week project where we had to make a game with 1 or 2 levels to test our concept for in-game mechanics. My role was that of a unity developer/level designer where I worked to design the level with the artists and scripted to incorporate certain features.