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December 06, 2021, 12:29:47 AM

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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperPlaytestingSurveillance Sphere - jam game, Hidden Folks / Labyrinth City style
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Author Topic: Surveillance Sphere - jam game, Hidden Folks / Labyrinth City style  (Read 128 times)
Guntha
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« on: November 09, 2021, 12:36:16 PM »

Hello!

Last week-end, there was a game jam on the French website developpez.com. They're a bit heavy on themes, so it was a challenge to find an idea alone.

The themes were "The universe is made of rounds" and "Schrödinger's cat".

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You're the authoritarian mayor of a small town, which you thought you were running perfectly. Your citizens go to work, use their free time sanely, without showing any sign of rebelliousness or even laziness.

But all that was before an obscure Defense company asked you to test their last device... The Sphere!

The Sphere shows you the actual reality you were trying to ignore so far! Far from being the perfect citizens you thought they were, they practice all kinds of illegal activities! But nothing The Sphere can't see!

You can arrest criminals by clicking on them in the area The Sphere is active. But beware, The Sphere requires a lot of energy, and is therefore not cheap to activate and maintain. So you must use it sparingly, only activate it when a citizen looks suspicious already in your reality. Every arrested criminal will convince your bosses to raise your subvention.

================================================

The goal at first was to make a Hidden Folks / Labyrinth City inspired game, where every "criminal activity" (tagging walls, being drunk in the street, cops beating honest citizens...) were a nice looking scene to identify, because of the jam's duration constraint, the reality is different. The game now feels like a hide-n-seek game, where the only "criminal activity" is "dancing around with axes in the hands". Doing more than that required a lot of content, and I already had to create a lot without that (silly idea to create a game requiring an entire city during a jam :p )

The goal of the game is to activate The Sphere anywhere on the map, where one of the little people looks suspicious, by left-clicking in its area and leaving the mouse button hold a short while. If in the other reality they've got axes in their hands, then click on them to arrest them, which will raise your subvention money, allowing you to play for longer. At the same time, the other reality will show you how the city is actually decayed (collapsed buildings, fallen trees, dry grass...)

On the tech side, it's a custom, Windows-only engine which already allowed me to create a few jam games (I started a few devlogs of games using it here :p ). It supports both DirectX12 and OpenGL3.x for display, and uses SoLoud as its sound engine (even though I didn't have any time to add sound to this game :p ). The city has been created with TrenchBroom. The images, apart from a few of the map's textures, have been made using Adobe Illustrator by Biiscuit, who also wrote the intro text (only in French in this version, sorry :/ )

You can download the last version of the game here:
http://lhuillia.iiens.net/wejv11/WE2021_SurveillanceSphere_postjam.zip

I kept the jam version available for archiving purposes:
https://lhuillia.iiens.net/wejv11/WE2021_jam_version.zip

First I'm interested to know if the game runs on pretty much everyone's computer (there are 3 .exe files in the .zip, as long as one of them works I'm fine.). Then I'd like to know if anyone would be interested to see the "Hidden Folks in a 3D town" taken further :p

See you soon, and have fun!
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AaronB
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« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2021, 02:00:16 PM »

Interesting concept which I think would work well with a well developed story line.  It would soon get boring without a story to motivate the player to find the next perpetrator.  Like the 2D hidden object games, the story really sells the title.
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