Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Weekly Update (Part 4)

Week 26
Wed 26.6 - Oodi, group room
The project is moving forward and people are starting to find their perspective towards the process. The main goals for this week were: 1) to understand the artistic styles of the involved designers and 2) to form a solid schedule and plan with coders. The first goal was achieved as designers started to find their place on the right graphics-team after expressing their personal artistic view. The graphical vision - style of the game also started to become clear. To simplify, there are two main graphical scenes; real-world and dead-world. Former is ikea kind of clear and straight lines, and latter is more like curling hair etc. The second goal was found to be too hard to achieve because there needs to be a plan/pictures of the scenes before any real coding-schedule can be made. It was concluded that the project is still too much in the head of the game designer (Helena), so she has to draw sketches of the game scenes, and talk through them! The whole workgroup, in general, should talk more about their thoughts on the game in order to make it clear for themselves. It's important that everyone participating in this project defines their angle and incentive every week, and asks every question out loud. Helena has been working on the scene-pictures that will help the whole workgroup to be on the same page. Now we need just more defining and talking and breathing... this is starting to be really exciting! The hard part is that Helena and me (Esa) have all the kids on summer vacation so the time available for this project is fractional! This can be seen positively though - we need to take it slow and not to rush on things! On my behalf im sorry that this report is coming so late and that it is so tiny. I'm trying to make the following report on the same week, right after the wednesday-meeting (at thursday maybe). Please ask on this page, or email if you want to know more about the project as it is right now! Peace!

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Weekly Update (Part 3)

Week 25

KE 19.6 - 
Shelter Gameroom

This week we had our meeting at Shelter Gameroom (in the private room), which is a wonderful open gaming place at Kaisaniemi. Thanks to Tuomas, we were given this opportunity to use the room for our project! After the meeting, we realized though that we can't have a room where voice is echoing, so we still need to be in a basic conference-room - even at the cost of losing the high-tech computers, this room would have! In the end, these weekly meetings are all about talking. Anyhow, we have been talking about different collaboration possibilities with Tuomas, so there might be something else happening on that front.
The incentive for this week was to figure out the style of the game and to start the project with Godot -engine and GitHub. Both of these objectives were achieved, even though the graphical (cartoonish) style will become more precise during the upcoming weeks, as Helena (with her theatre director -based development style) needs to familiarize herself with the artistic style of every graphic-designer involved in this project, in order to impose them correctly to the stage and deliver the final performance; answer the final question about the style of the game.
It's awesome to see how well the graphic-designers are organized (thanks to Oona) though, as there are already various teams focusing on different graphical areas, like 1) facial expressions & defenses, 2) the character, 3) the village, 4) the battle. As the work is mostly done from a distance, Oona (graphics-leader) has built an active discord-channel, pinterest, and padlet to help the designers to share thoughts, ideas, and works to each other. Weekly meeting At the weekly-meeting we talked about the following things: 1) Assignments people had for the past week (marked in here) - in addition to the content the workload and work-method were again reviewed. 2) Rest of the defenses (last week we only talked about introjection and desensitization), which took most of the time. In the end, every member of the workgroup was instructed to make gamification of 3 defenses for the next meeting.
3) The weekly meetings of graphic-designers and coders have to be separated because they work at a different level of development. This way the meetings become more clear and focused (and coders can have their space too :D).

4) Open and closed assignments for the following week. To name a few, Susanna promised to be a host of GitHub and Roni said that he will create a foundation of the ALT -project, and a folder -system in Godot engine.

5) The work method is all about taking the right amount of responsibilities to carry out in one week. No one is calling after them, and if the taken tasks are not ready by a given time, and the one that picked them won't dib them again, they will change to open assignments again.

6) Helena is trying to get a familiar gestalt therapist to review gamification process of the gestalt therapy defenses. The core-summer is off, but August is on the table.

We also had a new intern, Andreas, who will start the process by toying with Godot engine - just like the other coders. Next week
We will have two different meetings; first with graphic-designers (AM) and then with coders (PM). In both meetings, the homework (gamification of the 3 defenses) will be handled.

The main incentive of the next weeks meeting with coders will be about schedules, so there will be a solid plan for different coding-steps with DL-timelines for graphics-team. We will also discuss the technical things concerning the battle modes (1v1 / multiplayer -> how it will be different/same?)

The objective with graphic-designers, on the other hand, is all about understanding the artistic styles of the involved designers, so the final style can be composed out of it. Game designer notes

-> Heroes battle system should work as follows (inspired by Empires & Puzzles -mobile game); certain defenses are strong against others and the other way around. Every defense has its own superpower-meter, that fills when one is struck by other heroes, especially when the enemy represents counter-defense.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Weekly Meeting (Part 2)

KE 12.6 - Töölö library

Posted by: Esa (Pelkuri)

OBS! This text is based on what Hele (psykkis) has told me about the meeting, since i weren't present.

We had our second meeting at Töölö's library since we didn't get a work-space from Oodi this time.
There were new people in the meeting - also couple coders that we were lacking previously. Hooray to that!

What did we do?

First of all, we did a little round where every participant had a possibility to define their dream-angle on this project. After that, we talked about the tasks and goals that group-members assigned to themselves last week. We also reviewed the workload by asking ourselves questions like: were there enough / too much / too little work to be done in the previous week? The incentive in this kind of reflection is to find the right window of tolerance for everyone - which is a key component in this kind of working method where we are trying to catch a flowing mental state.

We talked a lot about the game itself; core mechanics, perspective, etc. Helena (game designer) introduced an idea of the battle mode, where one has to climb to the top (using some kind of platforms) in order to reach the enemy's village, that will be raided. Different kind of strategies would emerge when trying to climb to the top; one is lurking behind the bush that one built on a specific platform for example. The battle would be happening in one view, and it would be ideal for 3v3 gaming. This idea resonated in the workgroup, and graphics-team promised to clarify the vision for everyone, by producing some kind of sketchy drawings of it for next Wednesday. The pictures attached to this blog are first sketches of the battle-mode, that one of our graphics-designer (Jesse) drew.

We talked about Gestalt therapy's contact-cycle, which is the background theory of hero-skills. It was concluded, that it's very important that everyone in the workgroup familiarize themselves personally with the contact-cycle, because all of the coding mechanics & graphics that are influenced by the theory (for example, how will deflective hero move and how will it visually look?) should be verified by every member in the workgroup. This way the solutions won't get too high-flown, as they remain at a collectively understandable level. You can read more about the thoughts already made on these defense-based hero-skills (and the game in general) from here: ALT- pelin drivekansio. It's only in Finnish for now, but we will have English versions of everything in the future.

We started the journey to the contact-cycle by focusing on two defenses, which were desensitization and introjection. After the theory-talk, we focused on the gamification of these defenses. Desensitization is a mental state, where one is unable to feel emotions etc. We need this defense in order to survey from traumatic situations, but it can also form a mental trap which is, for example, a foundation of psychopathic behavior. Natural gamification of this would be a heavy-built tank, that can eat a lot of damage, with the downside that there are no HP meters of any kind where the taken damage could be realized. This kind of gamification process will be done for every defense in a way that everybody familiar with the contact cycle could easily spot the link between the theory and hero-skill.

Introjection is a humane tendency to swallow impressions from the environment without critical thinking and reflection. It is in the core of every learning-act, but on the other hand, it can also prevent learning by causing static beliefs that don't have the flexibility which is needed in growth. There are many ways to gamification this, but one idea that came forward in the meeting (which is not actually a hero-skill per se) was an introjection-diamond, that heroes need in order to promote themselves. If one desires to cancel the promotion, a reflection-rubber will be needed. The idea of the promotion system itself came from the game Empires & Puzzles, where one needs a different kind of items in order to promote heroes. It's a cool game btw!

Anyway, these are only examples of the possibilities the gamification process can offer in defenses/ hero-skills -front.

Lastly, we talked about tasks for the upcoming week. Helena built an excel-table to help the process, where the available & assigned tasks are marked in different columns. The idea is that group-members would look at the available tasks, or suggest a new one (especially if one isn't present in the live-meeting) by themselves, and pick a suitable amount of them (by commenting) for the following week. Questions about the tasks or something else should be put to our discord or facebook (straight links at the end of this blog-site). Here is a link to the table: ALT -assignments (mostly in Finnish but in the future will be in English too).

Other things

On the back, my (Esa) role was defined as project coordinator. For now, I have been investigating workspace-possibilities for Wednesdays, and broadly a co-operation potentiality with different actors on the field. I'm going to post more on these things as soon as they are verified.

That's a wrap! I will be posting this kind of blog-texts every week, and maybe some additional update-posts, depending on the situation. So far this project feels really good, and I think we will make history together... If you are new to this project, please visit our facebook, and read the uploaded material and/or ask if there is something in your mind! You can also ask about the project right here, in the comment-sector of this blog, or by sending a message through the contact form. Join the journey!

Happy week to you all!

Friday, June 14, 2019

Weekly Meeting (Part 1)

KE 5.6 - Oodi, work-space 7 Posted by: Helena (psykkis)

I'm sorry that this message is coming so late, but I have been thinking about the right form, schedules, resources, etc. Firstly, I have to say that I'm very thankful that this project finally started! :) It was so cool to see what kind of angles people had, and I'm really excited to see that how will this project come together, slowly as piece by piece. Yeah! :).

This is what we did in the meeting:

1) We talked about the game being 2D or 3D and didn't really come to any solution. Please give your viewpoint on this topic if you have one, so we can find the right solution!

2) We talked about the angle of the game, and watched some examples from different games (these games - that represent somewhat the kind of angle we are looking for, are named in the flapboard-picture below).

3) We talked about the gestalt contact cycle (mostly about human psychological defenses) which you can find from internet by googling it. It's crucial that everybody understands the basics of the contact cycle, because it represents the psychological mechanicsms what we want to teach with this game. Heroskills will be based on these defences, and we talked about the process on how to transform them into heroskills. We have a basic schech about these skills, but they might change during the process; most important is that the background theory and the way we use it remains the same.

4) We talked about the way of working in this project, which is all about not doing too much. We belive that the flow of the process will be present in the work (as in theatre), so we don't want to spoil that flow by trying too hard. We need to enjoy while doing this project, so that people playing the game can enjoy it too. So basically; don't try to push too hard :).

5) We talked about the owning-percents of the upcoming game-product; 10 % is reserved for the inventor of the game-idea, and the rest is shared between the people involved in this project. We will share the percents based on the contribution to the project, so it will be fair for everyone. The work you do for the game will be your property, so you can own a part of graphics or coding, but you can't remove it from the game afterwards. If the game will be a success and produce money, you will get what is reasonable concerning the contribution you have given for the project. It is really important that you mark every piece of work done for the project to the given channel in discord, so we can see them when distributing the shares. We will make sure that the distribution process will be fair, and there won't be any bitterness.

6) We talked that in the end of every Wednesday-meeting, we will clarify that who will do what for the next week. The most important thing is not to do a lot, but to do what is good for oneself and what is enough to take the next step. We don't have to build the world in one day :)<3

I (Helena) promised to do these things before next week:

- Announcement of apprenticeship to job center
- To figure out how people could join these Wednesday-sessions throught skype-connection
- To install godot into my computer and work my way to understand the system so after next Wednesday coding-people know when and how to start coding (i will meet Susanna Friday 12 clock, where we talk about godot so i hope the usage will be more clear to me after that!)

- Make a google drive for us
- Make a trello for us (first i will investigate if it will serve us though)

Oona Suikkonen is the leader of the graphics-team, which consist of Oona, Pihla & Pauliina. They promised to do sketches of characters, village, and possibly the fight-mode. Oona will post some genrematerial into the drive, and host a padlet with the graphics-team, that every member of the workgroup can watch -> Oona will put instructions of this to PRG discord before next wednesday.

Katariina Aho will write an recap-articles about the workprocess before every Wednesday.

Jeremia is also a part of this project, whom angle will be cleared out since he has read this and we have talked it through during this week.

Please tell, all you that were present in the first meeting, if there is something that i did miss from this recap!

I promise to help everyone that are willing to contribute into this project, to get the help needed so the project will go forward. Remember to always speak out loud if there is anything you need to move forward - together we will figure out how to remove the obstacles that are in the way. We will do this together!

I will always share pictures and recaps about everything we have drawn or looked at on Wednesdays. Please ask spesific questions if there is anything you would like to know more about. Challenge yourselves to think and propose yourselves when there is something you would like to say or do. And remember to link your friends if you notice that there is something your contact could help in!

Also one important thing: Remember to spread the word about this facebook-group, and invite everyone that you think could have something to offer in terms of doing or consulting :).

This is what we need right now:
1) We need more people for coding.
2) We need an introduction of Godot for the next meeting.
3) We need someone to do a trailer of the game (the idea of it will be posted in form of picture below)

My (Helena) contact information:
Helena Pavloff-Pelkonen 0408141246 (phone-calls), 045 (whatsapp)
Link to PRG discord: (where the work is shared -> open the gamedesign-channels by following the instructions of the #roles -channel, or just ask it in the general-conversation)

Thank you to you all that are a part of this in any way. This has been and will be an awesome journey, and I'm happy to share it with you guys :). Thank you that you are taking a leap of faith to see what if this will really be a great success!