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by Kingsley Hopking



The brief was simple, yet broad, so we decided on some constraints to provide a sense of direction when conceptualizing ideas. The first was that we needed a simple mechanic that could be used in multiple ways, to provide dynamic gameplay. The second constraint, that follows that, is that the mechanic(s) are easy to learn but hard to master.

One idea that came from these constraints was a 2D platformer game, where the player would not only move a character from A→ B, but also control a light source that would cast shadows, that the character could walk on. The initial idea for such game is the drawing on the right. The unique element of creating your own platforms would help to make interesting challenges. This simple principle could be used to create other mechanics, such as blocking enemy projectiles with the shadow/light, adding additional light sources that were fixed in position, so they had to be blocked with other objects, and even mirrors that can reflect a light source

This mechanic fit our constraints, as it is only really one mechanic (on top of generic platformer mechanics), moving around a light source. The mechanic would be easy to interface with, as it would be controlled by a mouse position, and hard to solve puzzles with, as Game Objects & platforms would hinder the player in creating a straight beam of light from A→ B.

we decided to carry this idea forward as a digital prototype. Click here to read more about the prototyping process.