Personal Space Invaders

BUILDING VIRTUAL WORLDS ROUND 3 : Lightning round

Personal Space Invaders is a Virtual Reality experience built for the Eye-tracking VR headset Fove. This project was built by a five person team in a period of one week. I did game-play programming and UI design.

Personal Space Invaders is a level based game in which the target of the player is to outlast the timer of each level without being caught by the naked musclemen. We made full use of the eye-tracking technology in the Fove as the player has to look directly at the musclemen for them to stop coming towards the player. If the player blinks at any point in the game, all the musclemen in the scene leap towards the camera (the player). The principle objective of this game is to have a fun experience, which was the theme of the lightning round.

We intended on having the experience incline from easy to hard, and by the time the player reaches the final level they have a good understanding of how the weird world works, and what they should and should not do to get their personal space invaded. Most brainstorming sessions were spent figuring out the configuration of musclemen placement across each levels.  We initially started out with a 360 degrees placement (all around the player) but during initial playtest we realized that it just led to players wildly swinging around back and forth and straining their necks in the process. We made several prototypes and finally settled on an arc, gradually extending in angle and number of musclemen through the levels. Difficulty of each level was set using the speed of the approaching musclemen, which was also gradually ramped up for each level.

Several indications were used to give feedback to the player, as we learnt in playtest that without feedback it was not obvious if they were staring at the right place and whether or not they were blinking. We kept an Eye Open/Close sprite in the center of the camera view, which tells you exactly where you’re looking at. When you look at a muscleman they not only move backwards but they also turn red which reinforces the fact that you’re looking at the right place. We gave plenty of auditory indicators for when they’re close by, spawning or moving away.

 

 

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