Game Design Document: Pigeon Slayer
- Overall vision
- Summary. I was inspired to create this game because the thing that scares me the most in life are pigeons. I thought it would be therapeutic to have a game where my character could defeat my sworn enemies, so I created a game where the main character (that looks a lot like me) has to kill pigeons.
- Genre. this game falls under the category of ‘Hero slay Monster’ (= Carlotta slay pigeons).
- Target audience. This game is mainly targeted towards those who are affected by ornithophobia, even more so towards those who are terrified by pigeons. People who are also interested in defeating flying enemies might enjoy this game.
- Mechanics: Rules of the game world
- Character goals. The player’s main goal is to kill pigeons. In the first level, you mainly focus on escape and can only kill the pigeons by jumping on them. In the second level, you can use the axe that you collected previously to kill the pigeons and eventually defeat the boss pigeon.
- Abilities. The character can stand, walk, jump and use her axe.
- Obstacles. The main obstacles of the game are the pigeons. They follow you as soon as you enter in their line of sight, which is quite terrifying, if you don’t kill them they will kill you.
- Items. The only objects you can collect are flowers that have been blown off the trees in the far bottom, if you collect these objects you get a point for each one. You can also collect an axe that you will use in the second level, and a potion that will change your size and help you defeat the final ginormous pigeon.
- Resources. You have only 5 lives and each flower gives you one point. If you pick-up the potion you grow in size and are able to defeat the final pigeon.
- Dynamics: Interaction between player and the game
- User interaction. There is no tutorial, so they player will have to discover on his own how to play. Thankfully it is pretty straightforward as the arrow keys are used for movement and the spacebar is used to operate the axe.
- Proficiency. Practice is one of the proficiencies you need for progressing in this game.
- Gameplay data. Texts display gameplay data like lives at the right of the screen, score at the left and in the first level there is the ‘survival objects’ box at the bottom.
- Controlling the game. Conveniently, you can stop the game anytime by pressing Esc. There are also handy keys that you can press to restart the level (R) or (P) to start the 1st level.
- Overall. In no more than two sentences, describe the style and feel of the game.
- Game art. The feel of the game is fairly realistic, but with cartoonish graphics. All of the colors are pretty bright and there aren’t many shadows as the game is primarily 2D.
- Sound. There are different sounds played during the game. Only one ambient sound is present at the winner page: Since it is a serene tone (sound of nature), it helps reinforce the idea that you, the player, as a winner of Pigeon Slayer, have made the world a better place now. The other tones are a yell, which occurs every time a pigeon touches my character, and a gentle plucking tone that occurs when the character picks up the flowers.
- Plot. The backstory of this game is the hard truth that pigeons are evil and chase you while you are simply walking past them because of their sadistic nature. This game will teach you to never trust pigeons.
- Emotional state. If you are easily impressionable this game can be an emotional roller-coaster. The emotional states that this game provokes are: anxiety at the beginning as all the pigeons are suddenly following you, and then relief when you finally defeat both levels.
- Fun. Gratifications like destroying your enemies and competition are provided in this game.
I created most of the things I used in my game, such as my character, thanks to separate assets I found on Kenney under the name “Modular Character”. Using pre-existing assets that I ‘simply’ had to modify was a r
eally good compromise, as I wanted to create some of the game art myself but also did not have that much time to do so. Using the vector files of premade arms, faces and body shapes. I still probably spent too much time on creating my character and all of its movements. I also recycled some of the assets I created for my previous animation project “Spinning on Repeat.” All the other assets I found by searching on google sprites for the objects I wanted and going to the image’s sites. I found the pigeon in chapmanworld.com . The backgrounds are simple images from google and the little crates I found in this great game packet on opengameart.com. The sounds is courtesy of the site www.freesound.org and some also come from the same opengameart packet.
The hardest part of creating Pigeon Slayer was probably making the pigeons follow my character. I will admit that I did not budget my time well enough for this game. I spent too much time on the graphics and on the 1st level. Also at the beginning, I was trying to build the second level vertically. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to do so because the
window options are the same for the whole project and not for the single layouts. I will try to discover if it is possible and I might integrate this feature in my final game.
Finally, thanks to this project I have discovered and learned a variety of things that are useful in construct 2 just by experimenting. For example, the most exciting thing I found is that if you use different layers and alternate their parallaxes’ you can create depth in your game. This really enhances your game’s aesthetics. I will surely use this technique for my final project, and many other things that I have learned simply thanks to trial and error. I am incredibly excited for what is to come in the next month! The next game I would like to do would be a story based game. Another fun option would be a multi task game where every level the game asks you to do something different in order to reach your final goal.
Here’s the link: http://transmedia.trinity.edu/~cdebelli/PigeonSlayer/
PS: I wasn’t able to export the debugged version. Every time I tried Construct would freeze and I had to do “end task.”