I want to be popular!

“I want to be popular!” is a game made for the October 2020 Spain Game Devs (Jam II). Made with Unity 3D. Mateu Camps and I won second prize in the art category and got fifth place in the sound category! The theme of this Game Jam was “Duel”.

Synopsis

The game is about Mochi, a rabbit who tries to gain popularity on his way to work on his Ducktter account, the new social network. With a clicker style system, you will have to click the comment button as many times as possible to gain visibility and popularity. But don’t let the haters ruin your day! You will have to face them in a speed competition to see who is the one who comments the fastest and gets the most followers. Luckily, you have a super secret weapon: comment with pictures of kittens! Because who doesn’t like to see cats on the internet?

How was made?

This game is made for Windows and Mac, developed with Unity 3D using Bolt, the visual scripting tool. The game design, the programing and the visual work were made by Yeray Toledano, and the music and sound were made by Mateu Camps using FL Studio 20, Stage Craft Bit Crusher, Adobe Audition CC 2020 and Bfxr.

Idea

The initial idea comes from the Game Jam theme: “Duel”. After a brainstorming, I realize the only “duels” I see in my daily life are the ones on Twitter about anything, and it’s also something that a lot of people have lived.

Goals

Main Mechanic​
Pressing the big blue button on the screen in the purest clicker style like Cookie Clicker. This mechanic was chosen for its simplicity but at the same time its ability to engage the user and generate an engaging emotion. It was not feasible for the game to be based on actually writing posts on the social network, as it would become tedious and monotonous, so I opted to simplify it and make it as easy as pressing a button.
Dynamics
Thanks to the powerup of sending a picture of the cat, two different dynamics are generated: you can keep the powerup for difficult battles where players are about to lose, or choose to use it as often as possible to get extra points.
Pleasures
Sensorial: for its art, music and constant feedback. Challenge: Completing the constant challenge of beating rivals. Delight in the misfortune of others: By defeating the haters who criticise Mochi. Humour: By changing the character's aesthetics. Thrill: For the constant danger of being defeated.
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Audience

This game is basically for killers, as it is based on a fast action game where players have to take place against other enemies in order to be the best and have better positions in the ranking of points.

Problems and solutions

How can you make a game about a social media with a first person camera, but at the same time get the player to empathize and feel identified? The player usually empathizes when there’s a character that good and bad things happen to them, so if the player only can see the social media UI it’s gonna be difficult to get this feeling, and also it’s unattractive visually. Solution: Slit the screen and add Mochi, the cute and expressive rabbit

How can you get the player to empathize? Solution: with an adorable character, because everybody loves them. But what do people love even more? An adorable character that sometimes makes not so adorable things. This duality, between an adorable character and no adorable, the contrast, it’s turn comic and funny.

Things to improve

  • Few mechanics, and therefore few game dynamics.
  • The “popularity points” have to be useful to get something, or the game turns boring and repetitive. Why should the player keep clicking? Maybe it’s necessary to implement progress, scores or power-ups.

References

Yeray Toledano – Game Designer

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