Key to the Puzzle – Bleak Manor

I’ve produced some keys concepts for the Synoptic project. Nikki is modelling them, and I have been working on some final designs.

I firstly came up with some quick ideas. I then Worked from that to create a final key I like. Now I have re-drawn that concept as a final concept; a golden-metal key.

Today I drew a darker rendition of the key with some different features as another key for the game, possibly a decoy. I know they need multiple keys, so for now I have made sure to design a working key and a decoy key.


Logo Designs – Bleak Manor

Today I began UI concepts for the game. I have come up with a few logo concepts I think could fit the theme already.

I used old Style fonts and my own handwriting, mixed with red splashes. I am not sure if the gory reds fit well with our game as there is no indication of Danger, but it would add to the mystery if it were in the book.logo1logo2


I like that the final logo is all free-handed, and that the “IN” is technically trapped. I do like the instantly dated feel the others give. I would like to take pieces from these logos to finalise one. As they are just concepts my team will hopefully choose what they would like in the UI also, as it represents their game.




Additional Sketches for the Frame and Desk – Bleak Manor

I finally came up with a frame design I would like to go over the portrait for the room. It is bronze-gold in colour and very large, to cover the safe.


I also completed my concept for the desk, as I have drawn a sketch of the back corner. I wrote on the dimensions from that angle too.

Adam had the idea to add detailing into the edges of the desk. I wasn’t adding extra details into models because I didn’t know how long the modellers wanted to spend on each model, and didn’t want to add unnecessary tasks to the model. As it turns out they are welcoming details in the concepts and want to add more. They’re already doing cool stamps etc. so I will take that in for further designs.



Art Book Sample – Bleak Manor

Today after I researched art books for reference, I did a sample of our own for Bleak Manor.

The team thought about it a lot, then when I asked their ideas on it they said they would love a brown paper background with ink spills on the edges.

To achieve that I used a brown paper texture, then painted- with varying opacity- a dark blue spill on the edges. I also added a subtle vignette and a yellow glowing the middle as though a small amount of light is hitting the page in the centre.

After that I decided to use my smoking chair as the example, because I had access to drawings of the whole process on hand. I put the initial concepts on the page and tilted them, adding shadows being to simulate the pieces hanging off from one pinned point. I think it looks realistic on the page this way.

I then used my chair concept, deleted the background colours and shadow, then overlapped it slightly on the page as a final, eye-catching object. I added a new shadow and set it in a large space. I think it looks good to have it with no background on the page.

Also the team wanted some fancy handwriting as a font. For the real thing this can either be neater or messier, but I tried to use neat but quick handwriting for this (with extra swirls). I was told it filled the space well, and it ties in the spilled ink with the page itself.


So far everyone seems happy with the layout. I was going to do multiple examples, but people said it was what they pictured, and the rest was what I pictured to look good; so this will likely be the sample we give to Matt next week.


Digital Desk Design – Bleak Manor

On Tuesday I used my desk sketches to come up with a concept for the writing desk. I chose my favourite aspects from my original designs and used them to create a desk I was happy with. It is old, wooden and glossy. It has gold tinted metal handles on the drawers and cupboard compartments.

It has the same dimensions as the desks I designed before (The most important of which being the fact it is 60 inches wide). I will have to sketch this desk from a diagonal-back angle I think, to show how it looks behind and to give more of a look at the scale itself; so at that point I will write the final measurements on the concept before handing it to the modellers.

I actually used the dimensions Adam researched and put into Trello for reference. Before even searching for images I had decided to do a desk this style, and the sizing he came up with allowed me to use that.deskfront
I also decided to play around with a few undertones for the wood colour for the modellers who end up texturing this desk. I think a reddish undertone would look classic, but the desk chair doesn’t have that, so I think it can be the modellers decision for what works best for them, and for the team to decide if we should match the wood colours for the chair and desk, or have them bought separately and look unique. Neither has been made yet so that can be decided whenever, as my concepts are mainly for the shape and design, I don’t mind what gets changed, if it means it works better for the room.deskcolours


Portrait – Bleak manor

Yesterday I finished a portrait to go on the wall in Bleak Manor for my synoptic. I Used Photoshop to do this. It is a painting of the former owners of the house on their wedding day. Based on the woman’s makeup and hair, and the way they’re posed, we can imagine it was around 1920. The sinister looks in their eyes are because the painting takes time to do, but also they are mysterious people.

I drew the people from scratch and used Matt’s advice of using a bookshelf photo in the back, burring it and adding overlays. I also them drew in a vignette. I didn’t make the picture too dark or gloomy because this is meant to be a happy occasion documented, but there is contrast in their facial expressions of that.


I originally drew my idea for this painting on paper. The girl looks quite different, but I think I kept the style similar for the man.

portrait concept

I think the drawing looks a bit too smiley, and I had put no research into the dresses of the era or anything yet. I also think the flowers were too much of a colourful idea.

I am happy with the outcome of the picture and hope it looks good in the room.


Early Layout Concept – Bleak Manor


Using the Group Trello I looked at the list of assets (and people’s concepts) and decided to draw a room layout idea with the assets in to see how the space would look in game.

Kelly made a white-box game and we saw it in VR. The room was rectangular and had a starting spot (the small square of flooring on the right) where the character spawns in. We discussed extra space for the desk and desk chair, so I didn’t include them in this version of the concept, but will be doing more of these in the future to explore ideas for that.

This drawing helps me get a feel for the room. An idea of where things will be and how the player will be walking around objects in VR. What I am trying to do, when drawing these concepts, is consider how the player would interact with the environment and be able to complete the puzzles.


Quick Mario Storyboard

In one of Tony’s lessons we had to pick a game and draw a storyboard for it. I did a very simple one for a level of Mario, where you get powers, defeat enemies, grab the flag and run into the castle.

This was an experiment in game storyboarding as opposed to film. I focussed on the actions and general obstacles and goals of the level, rather than specific details and timings.

I drew this on Photoshop and enjoyed drawing an existing character without trying to draw a copy of the character’s style as it is only a storyboard.

I liked the bright outcome of this drawing.



Game Jam Assessment

We did an assessment in the style of a Game Jam (but as individuals) in silence these past 2 weeks to test our ability to put together a top down game.

The aim of the game is to get your character from the start to the goal without being shot by enemies who face you and shoot, before the time runs out.


In the game we had to include a player, 3 moving enemies, obstacles, walls, a goal and a timer. Each of these has their own necessary programs you need to apply to make it them work.

  • The player must move with arrow keys, and collide with everything on the map.
  • The enemies must have Waypoint movements, and the ability to autofire bullet projectiles at the player, whilst using a line of sight to track the player when they’re within their view.
  • Obstacles must have colliders attached to top the player moving through them, just like the walls.
  • The goal must be a trigger which would send the player to the next level
  • Finally the timer must count down in seconds visibly, and when it hits 0 the level restarts.


I had my notes to help and it went really smoothly. The main problems I had weren’t with errors in the code at all, but with accidentally putting the codes on the wrong assets, such as when I grouped my enemies and applied my line of sight code to all 3 and the empty game object they were children to- I kept getting the error saying I hadn’t defined my target in the inspector on one of the objects my script was applied to, and figured out it was on an extra object by accident. Working out the kinks with Unity whilst making this has helped me understand the correlation between script and game due to the engine way more.


I also used 2 scenes in my game; Level1 and Level2 (which was a home screen you reach when you complete level1 to return to the start). I added these to the build and put the ‘button‘ script  on a button in Level2 to load Level1.


In the end my game worked perfectly and looked how I wanted it to. I spent a while putting the walls in the perfect position and scaling everything how I liked it at first, then began to code. I commented on my code too to explain what each section did before handing my account back over to Ant. I am happy with how it turned out and I’m proud that I can put a game together as it’s something I didn’t know before this course.


Fox Game Update


Since adding the enemy and goal to my game, I’ve added some new features. I added in walls to my scene with a box collider and rigidbody2D attached to them. I discovered that if I set the black walls further back (-10 in Z axis), they fell behind the camera so were invisible to the camera in game, but still acted as walls to the player. as the walls became invisible in-game, I added some decorative white doorways to show where you could enter and leave each room.

To the Cat enemy I added 2 new scripts, Autofire, and Waypoint 1 (these are scripts to make the Cat shoot a claw bullet, which I added to prefab after making it in Photoshop, on an automatic timer, and make it run backwards and forwards in the living room whilst shooting.

cats scripts

I set up a second level (where I moved the Cat, giving it new Waypoints, and the Swag Bag positions) and then added the scene to my project. I made a build with level 1 and 2, then went on to code the next level to be triggered when you collide with the swag bag.

I used a script to achieve this I called ‘newlevel’, which I attached to the Fox player :

Because the ‘nextLevel’ string is public, I can write the name of the next level in the box below the script which appears on the inspector; in this case I typed “Level2”. It worked after some difficulty putting things in the right place, including the tags I applied.

Tags separate assets into groups. In this case the tag for the bag was ‘goal’ (as seen on line 10 of the script on the picture). Ant’s tutorials covered these, and they were important, because the walls and bullets have colliders too so the level would be won every time the fox collided with anything, not just the bag, if i didn’t specify the type of object which would trigger a next level when collided with. This simple line changes the game completely!