A rotating puzzle platformer for the browser market where a blob battles gravity to unravel the mystery of his mother’s disappearance.
Role: Producer and game designer
View the gameplay video.
May 2014 – present
Where the Project Is At
Spin Your Way Home is currently seeking publication after a successful 12-week development cycle in the Centre for Digital Media’s Advanced Game Design course. I was involved in initial concept pitching and design, where the team tested several different rotation mechanics for feasibility and as soon as that was determined I began work on a story bible to guide design of the world.
As levels and mechanics were designed, tested and implemented the game’s core constantly shifted slightly between platformer mechanics or puzzle mechanics. This has been essential for finding the game balance and challenge flow, and also surprisingly helpful for creating the story as each iteration gives a clearer core idea to work into the overall world design.
The result is a masochistic platformer where my main job was to iterate on the level designs to ensure the game maintains a fair cause-and-effect structure and creates game flow through its difficulty arc. As the game was developed by a three-person team, I also served as a central coordinator and business-side producer.
What I’ve Learned So Far
This game has been my first opportunity to use the Unity Game Engine as a level design tool. While I’m not a level scriptor, I’ve been able to work with the team’s programmer to create a pipeline for level design that enables me to manipulate and design levels for story purposes with only Unity’s built-in editor, while mechanics are fine-tuned by the programmer. This has been a great experience for meshing gameplay and storytelling, but has demanded I learn a little more about level design principles so that the gameplay I’m in charge of crafting is well-paced, scoped and appropriately balanced.
The level of polish for a game the team intends to market is significantly more than is demanded for some of the prototyping and research-and-design projects I’ve been a part of. I’ve had to dust off some of the higher expectations I was taught in journalism production and work harder to make sure the team can consistently communicate when things are drifting slightly off track, as we have a tight deadline for producing the project.
I’ve also done some further sound design work and game testing to provide a basis on which to iterate on the level design. Being involved in that process has helped me see where the gameplay became frustrating for playtesters and find ways to create a more engaging and fair gameplay experience while retaining the difficult challenge arc essential to the game’s core puzzle mechanics.
Spin Your Way Home is available for publication partners. Please contact for more details.