Game: Crowd Control

Teammates: Fernando Rivera (Designer), Scott Pellico (Artist), Marlowe Rosenbaum (Artist), Jay Sternfield (Programmer)
Tools: iPhone – Objective-C
Project length: 2 Weeks (Finished 10/26/10)

During round 3 of our Rapid Prototype Production course at the Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy, we were tasked with the challenge of creating a game that emphasizes emergent gameplay. Our team decided to venture into the realm of the iPhone, choosing iOS as our target platform for the game.

During the first week of our two-week project, we created an elaborate concept of a population simulator in which the autonomous characters would interact with each other based on several different character attributes. However, we quickly ran into several design issues regarding player interaction, character interaction formulas and the overall player objectives in the game. After a less-than-ideal interim presentation, we decided it was time to refocus the direction of our game.

Crowd Control Splash Screen

Crowd Control!

Within a day of our interim presentation, our team had kicked into “redesign overdrive” and retooled our game’s focus into a much more manageable scope. With only one week left to complete the game, we decided to strip the character interactions down to a very simple formula, where each citizen’s attraction controls whether or not he will group up with another citizen in the environment. We also decided to focus the game around an nameless hero who is trying to save the citizens of a disaster-stricken city by delivering the citizens to the escape helicopter. The player character is controlled through the iPhone’s tilt controls, and the player can place items to help guide the citizens to the helicopter. These items include a green barrel which attracts the citizens, a red barrel which repels citizens and breaks up groups, and a police officer who directs the citizens towards the chopper.

Save the citizens from the impending disaster!

Save the citizens from the impending disaster!

The game came together very quickly over the next few days, and we were able to complete the game with enough time to conduct additional playtesting and polish. I am very proud of the final result, and our team is hoping to eventually publish the game on the iPhone App Store.