Microsoft Imagine Cup 2017 – Project RED

Project RED is a commercial game developed by my team of 4 as a 7-month long assignment for course COSC 4358/4359 at the University of Houston. I formed, coordinated, and taught the team in which my roles include Team Lead, Producer, Lead Programmer, and Animator. Upon completion, the game will be also be used to compete in the Microsoft Imagine Cup competition in 2017.

Project RED is a 2D puzzle platformer focused on clever puzzle design paired with modern mechanics. Of those modern mechanics, our hook is the ability to switch between timelines. By being able to switch between timelines at will, puzzles pieces can be layered and separated between timelines. This will challenge the player and require good use of their critical thinking.

DEMO DOWNLOAD: HERE (Windows 64-bit)

Now open-source on GitHub: HERE 

March 2017

  • As of March 2017, Project RED did not qualify for the Spring 2017 National Finals of the Microsoft Imagine Cup. Therefore, I will no longer continue to work on this project. However, I have released our demo used for the competition as well as made the project open source.
  • The latest addition was experimentation with some 2D weather effects

February 2017

  • The Microsoft Imagine Cup requires the use of Azure. Therefore, I built a user login system that will keep tracks of player data such as high scores and saves files in Azure. Players are able to register from the standalone and then be able to resume gameplay progress so long as they are logged in.

January 2017

  • New logo with intro transition to the main menu using Unity3D’s new splash screen feature.

December 2016

  • Project RED has been selected to advanced to the Spring 2017 National Semifinals of the Microsoft Imagine Cup.
  • In addition, had some bugs regarding the character controller which produced hilarious physics.

November 2016

October 2016

  • At this point, we have many of ideal visuals and core mechanics set in place. Puzzles are now built and placed according to difficulty and sequence. Our game works on a procedural loading and unloading algorithm. Therefore, the player is able to play the entire game without being interpreted by a loading screen. Below is a test segment of a bridge scene where the player is first tested on their ability to time jumps as well as experience the first death losing condition.
  • Some test visuals of backgrounds during switching between timelines
  • Early switching mechanics with terrain
  • Early implementations of background parallax

September 2016

  • After our artist finished our main character art, I proceeded the rigging of our protagonist using Puppet2D asset that will allow fluid motion using advanced mechanics such as IK and weight painting. The protagonist uses a simple humanoid structure consisting of 2 arms, 2 legs, and a spine for the body. The cape is also an IK setup so it can flow naturally like a real cape would. IK or Inverse Kinematics allows the feet and hands to bend and rotate while limiting it so it does not twist backward like how real arms work. The skeleton is then smooth binded to the image meshes and weight painted to correct muscle deformation. You can see in the rig tests below of the results:
  • One of the final looks at the final Mecanim tree
  • Incorporating blend trees to movement cycles
  • The player will be unable to switch to another timeline if they are within collisions of the other timeline as demonstrated below. The minimap shown displays the current position of the player in all timelines indicating by color which timeline they are able to switch to. The minimap will most likely not be in the final game but will be a useful dev tool for debugging.
  • Rebuilt character controller from scratch. Essentials such as jumping, climbing, pushing, pulling, dying, etc. are currently functional.

August 2016

  • Demonstration of the timeline transitioning with a simple puzzle. There is a door that is opened by a switch. The switch requires a key which is placed somewhere in the other timelines.
  • The first working demonstration of the timeline transitioning

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s