Spirit Orb is a game that was based on an assignment that teaches how to use Unity and how to “juice” a game. The assignment is from Stanford’s Introduction to Game Design and Development class, which I took in the autumn of 2018. It features a “spirit orb” that travels through a narrow path while trying to collect other orbs so it can evolve while avoiding collision with obstacles like trees and rocks.
The assignment asked us to improve (in other words, “juice”) a Unity game tutorial to re-envision it in a way that makes it more compelling, exciting, and visually attractive. The original version of the game I made that is based on the tutorial (before juicing it) is shown below.
V1 of the game before juicing
To learn how to create particle systems, customize lighting, and import assets from the Unity asset store. To experiment with taking a vanilla design and adding “sprinkles” to it to make it more compelling. As a designer, venturing into the game world yet again (after my first game design for my MentalBlocker iPhone app) has been exhilarating since it has helped me apply my design skills in a new arena. Creating intuitive games with simple, minimal rules that allow the player to hit the ground running has been an excellent way to hone my design skills.
For the upgraded design, I wanted something simple, clean, and bright. I decided to use trees and water to give my game a certain mood and my spirit orb would be cloud-like with emitting particles. Here’s my initial sketch:
I wanted a game that had earthtones (soft blues, bright greens, and wood tones), so I created a color palette that resulted in the final look and feel of the game.
The color palette
One Page Design
I created a one-page design that summarizes the main mechanics and features of the game. This was used as a mini-poster during in-class demonstrations.
Spirit Chaser One Page Design
Here’s the video that I submitted to the course staff when I completed the assignment.
I got a perfect score on this assignment. I was happy with how clean and bright the colors and assets look in the final game, and watching the spirit orb grow as it absorbs other orbs is satisfying every time I play. :)