Twine Game Reflection

Right from the beginning of the semester, I was eagerly waiting to do this assignment involving designing a game. While creating a Twine Game with my team, I played the role of a game compiler. My duties involved compiling all the scenes, coding them on Twine Games application, and thus creating the final output. From ideation to the final product, we all had a lot of fun putting it together. 

Our end goal for the assignment was to create something relevant to the current times. Each of us had something to bring to the table. We all had different effects of COVID-19 in mind that we wanted to address. First, we put them down and then tried to combine them together in our storyline. We were a team of four, from India and from the USA. Both the countries faced adverse effects but in their own way. This global perspective helped us add a universal appeal to our game. 

We created a document on Google Docs and noted the points we wanted to touch upon. Then, we started writing the script together on a zoom call. After hours of writing, rewriting and editing, we were ready with a plot which everyone was satisfied with. Then, we divided roles and rehearsed for the class presentation. We divided the content in a way that the person explaining a particular aspect was the one who had done it or suggested it. For example, I gave a demo of the game since I had coded it. This way we could do justice to each part of the game. By the end of it, the distance between us did not seem like a barrier.

I’m very happy with our final product. After the assignment, I sent all my friends the link to the game because I was really proud of our work. Through this assignment, I discovered my inclination towards this mode of communication. If I could go back to the start and do this over, I would have preferred we paid more attention to the character sketch than we did. But overall, it was a fun e=and enlightening experience. Right now, I visualise myself  experimenting with more games in the future.

Visual Note Taking

Image created and clicked by me

I’ve never been able to understand from borrowed notes. I feel they’re the most easiest form of understanding for the person who creates them and at the same time daunting for the readers to understand them. So, throughout my attempt to create this visual note, the only thing in mind was to be make it as simplistic as possible. 

This visual note is about a basic economic concept called ‘Opportunity Cost’. Since economics is a social science, my thought process while creating was aligned towards real life examples. Relating it to real life helped me connect the dots better, and now when I see the final product I think it turned out pretty well. I think it made me well versed in that concept. Minimum use of words brought more clarity and thus, making it more convenient to revise. Textual notes might just become my opportunity cost since, I’m going to go visual from now on. I’m glad that I got this assignment , because if not for it I would’ve never tried my hands on visual notes. 

Throwing a piece of paper into a bin

Video screen recorded by me while playing “Paper Throw 3D”

These times have implored us to find a virtual substitute for almost everything, from movie nights with friends to attending lectures in person. I thought it was only fair if I threw paper in the bin that way. It was made possible by this game ‘Paper Throw 3D’ on App Store.  

I think my throw is spectacular because it’s taking place virtually in reality. It still took multiple attempts to get the paper in the bin, though, like it would have in actuality. While playing the game, I suggest muting the audio since the music is far from simulating the real-time setting. Leaving that aside, I think we have found a reasonable way around everything. I was amused by the visual effects of the game. In certain rounds, the game literally had a fan to account for the wind. So, I guess the new normal ain’t that bad. No, wait. Nothing can fill the void of attending college freshman year online. 

Gris Liveblog

Below is my experience playing the game Gris

Going into the game, I already had a rough idea that the game depicted the five stages of grief. I’m not sure whether that mindset was for good, but it helped me make sense of it sooner than I would’ve unknowingly. 

The opening scene makes it quite evident that the girl has lost her voice and her world is breaking apart. Her life’s turned upside down. Minutes into the game, after the premise was set, I had the control. I was playing the game on my computer. Not being a video game person, I had no clue at first about how to make that girl stand up and walk. The arrow keys, apparently, weren’t working. It took toggling between W, A, S, D and the Spacebar key to control that girl. The audio and the visuals of the game were commendable. I could feel myself running away, treading deeper into myself. From grey to crimson to brown to a daylight tone, the different hues brought a different vibe and meaning. It took me two hours to reach that part, probably because of my inexperience, but I am definitely going to resume later. Throughout the game, the girl gets more courage with time signified by the power gained from the shining constellation-like dots and the box that shields her from the storm. 

There were parts where you had to make her climb onto a bug to move forward. To me, that portrayed how a person requires support and upliftment from humans to revive from grief. The most thrilling part in the game was falling underground to reach a monochrome landscape where your shadow seemed to follow you. That reflection made it seem like a  re-established connection with the inner self. It meant facing your fears by going to that deep level just to rise higher than before. The next scene opens with the girl emerging on the top of a stick structure.

Coming to the genre, Gris is said to be a 2D platform game. I am new to the platformer concept, but by its Wikipedia definition, I think that the game defies the action aspect of a platformer. There is no existence of a villain or fighting or shooting. The game is more like a journey of the sole protagonist through various stages of grief. The game developers chose a unique approach by quantifying grief. I think they chose to make a platformer because it’s a game which is characterised by the levels involved just like the stages in what they intended to depict ( Kübler-Ross model of the five stages of grief ). They are making attempts to persuade us to never give up. There’ll be times you fall off a building or get pushed backwards from a storm (metaphorically drowning more in grief), but it’s about having the will that guides the way.

Three o’ clock/ East

Conceptualised, sketched and photographed by me

Looking around the room to find something that means more than what meets the eye, I could not move past the compass that I found from the back of my drawer. My mind was flooding with memories of me wielding it to traverse the European streets. For my Sunday Sketch, I decided to go ahead with the compass, though it was a 3D object with just a ‘2D meaning’. Further, I used the process of reverse brainstorming. I worked my way backwards- filtering objects by shape first and then adding a meaning to them. The compass seemed to fit perfectly in a clock for the montage.

Well, it happens so that the clock ticked nine and the compass directed me towards a connection between the both of them. On a busy Monday, the clock guides our schedule. The compass takes on a similar role when we are travelling; it guides our route. If only it could permanently play that part, even during the Mondays.

Doing things the Polish way, we even give directions using the clock dial analogy. I might just conclude that we sometimes use them interchangeably.

Look at your 3 o’ clock to get that title.