I worked on this project over the course of eight weeks with four other graduate students at the Academy of Art University for our Prototype Game Development class. We began by pitching game ideas, then voting on our favorites and choosing which project to work on together. As I was hoping to get some experience working with both hex grids and city-builders, I pitched a game inspired by chill, laid-back builders such as Dorfromantik, ISLANDERS, and TerraScape.
My job was to serve as Creative Director, supervising the four Art team members; as Designer, creating the GDD and deciding on gameplay features; as Developer, creating the actual Unity Project and game build; and as Producer, coordinating all of the above over eight weeks in Trello.
The Hex Grid code comes from a great gist I found (and then later updated) that uses the math and principles from Red Blob Games. Placing a Building causes its Tile to check for missing Neighbors and spawn them, if needed, leading to the expansion of the playing field.
The Cards, unlocks, and menu animations are all done with Unity UI Toolkit and USS. I got away from using it after Voxel Defense, as I didn’t fully understand what I was doing and the traditional Unity UI served me well for the short length of my AAU projects so far. I’ve since gotten much more comfortable with it and, despite the huge amount of boilerplate code to set things up, I really feel like I can get new UI elements spun up quickly and efficiently now.
I had hoped to do an in-game main menu on this like Ron Swansong, but we were battling the end of the semester and I didn’t have enough time with the completed models to feel confident that it would come off, so I opted for a simpler menu design that still hopefully evoked the feeling of ascension.
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