Student Games | Playtests and Usability Reviews
At Indiana University, I often give feedback on the student game projects being developed by teams of undergraduate students. Sometimes, I help student teams revise their playtesting questionnaires to improve the quality of responses during data collection. I enjoy mentoring students on survey design so they can collect the best possible feedback on their game projects. I also have assisted some teams with playtesting their games. In a couple cases, I have conducted a ‘review’ of potential usability issues, such that the students have additional insights during development.
- Playtest/Usability Review of Witch of the Woods, an undergrad capstone game project in IU’s Game Design program
- Playtest/Usability Review of Escape Mount Olympus
- Playtest/Usability Review of Tori
Waves of Consciousness | Global Game Jam 2017 Project
In 2017, I participated in the Global Game Jam for the first time. Waves of Consciousness is a point and click adventure that explores the levels between reality and dreams. A little girl struggles to fall asleep and goes on an adventure in order to solve her problem. On this quest she runs into strange creatures and puzzles to solve.
You can download the 2D game Waves of Consciousness from the Global Game Jam page under the executable link. I was the game’s programmer, using the Fungus tool inside of Unity game engine.
Resurrection Man | M.A. Thesis Game Development Project
Resurrection Man was my first game development project, which I started and finished as part of my Master’s thesis at the University of South Carolina. At the time (circa 2013), I was interested in theorizing how video games might be designed to provide meaningful historical-engagement and historical interpretation for game players. I selected the lesser-known history of grave robbing during the North American 19th century, specifically when cadavers were purloined for medical colleges across the country.
I developed a prototype in Unity with a third-person character perspective, serving in the roles of level designer, programmer, and game designer. After a semester of familiarizing myself with Unity, I decided to re-build the final version of the game from the ground up with the player-character in the first-person perspective. Unfortunately, I no longer have a executable version of the game, and the Unity files I have are not supported in the current version of Unity. However, building the game was a valuable experience in learning the game development process, which I continue to find extremely valuable as a video game researcher and designer.
- Blog Post on Defending my Thesis and Moving Forward
- Blog Post on Overhauling the beta-version for my Master’s thesis project
- Blog Post on Resurrection Man and Historiographic Play
- Design Document for original Resurrection Man prototype
- My Master’s Thesis on Historiographic Gameplay
Ghosts of the Horseshoe | The University of South Carolina Mobile App
Ghosts of the Horseshoe was a student-developed augmented reality app for Apple devices. The goal of the app was to contextualize USC’s historic brick wall and grounds which were constructed by enslaved individuals.
For Ghosts, I served as the lead for the Narrative design team during Fall 2012 and Spring 2014. In this role, I designed historically-informed text, audio, and visual content for several of the interactive sites, including buildings that were former slave quarters and student dining halls. These interactive events were activated in the mobile app when the user was physically located at sites of interest at USC’s Historic Horseshoe and brick wall.
Mr. Irrelevant | Student Film
For Mr. Irrelevant, I served as the producer during my first semester in the M.A. program at the University of South Carolina. My responsibilities included securing locations, organizing the shooting schedule, and ensuring that the timetable was maintained during filming and production. I also designed Mr. Irrelevant’s costume, crafted several graphic props such as posters, flyers, and comic book covers, and assisted with script writing and editing. This project was my first film and I enjoyed the experience so much that I even wrote a script for a potential sequel.