Team Shadowstalker: Final Presentation Materials

This includes our presentation, video, and document.




Team Shadowstalker: Final Thoughts


At the end of the project, Team Shadowstalker’s game has successfully reached both minimum and target expectations and arguably met some of its higher expectations.  Among these, our game has multiple levels (‘More than two areas’), and greater enemy variety (Three enemies instead of two)*.  However, we admit that our polish for the game is somewhat lacking due to the minimalist approach that we chose to take with our game.  Few textures are used and no sound effects have been implemented, but there are visual effects and music in all aspects of the game.


*Due to the nature of the project, we felt that creating multiple levels could be considered an equivalent to creating a large level that contains many areas.


ü  Completed Player Character.  The player character will be completed.  The ninja will be able to move, jump, throw projectiles, sprint, slide, and wall-jump.

ü  At Least One Enemy with Non-Trivial AI.  At least one of the enemies in-game will possess non-trivial AI.

ü  Game Level.  There will be a game level designed to encourage the use of the ninja’s abilities.

ü  Clear Objective and Ways to Fail Objective.  Our game will be a game.  There is a way to succeed and win, and there will be ways to lose, such as dying. 


ü  Refined Mechanics.  The player character’s mechanics will be refined for tight controls and to establish a feel of high-degree control.

ü  Larger Game Level.  The level will be expanded and consist of  more areas.  Segways will be planned to visually indicate transition to a new area.

ü  Checkpoint System.  To complement with the larger level, a checkpoint system will be used to respawn the ninja should he die.

ü  Interactive Terrain.  Breakable walls and floors are planned to be integrated into the level.

ü  Refined Enemy AI.  The enemies will have improved and interesting AI implemented in the final game.

ü  Game HUD.  A HUD will be made to display important stats such as the ninja’s health and lives.

ü  Audio and Visual Polish.  Polish elements such as visual effects, sound effects, and music will be integrated into the game.


These are what Shadowstalker hope to have in the final game:

  • Player Upgrades.  Upgrades for the ninja such as increased speed or strength.
  • More weapons.  The ninja will gain additional weapons such as a close-range katana.

ü  Larger Level.  Level will consist of more than two areas.

  • Strong Enemy AI.  Enemies will display strong AI and may be threats to player.

ü  Greater Enemy Variety.  There will be at least two different types of enemies.

  • A Boss.  There will be a boss at the end of the level waiting for the player with AI implemented.
  • Significant Polish.  The game will have a strong amount of polish in audio and visual, allowing it to stand out very easily.
  • Special Camera Effects.  Camera effects that better reflect the ‘feel’ of the ninja, such as slow-mo to emphasize high-speed sprint.
  • Hard Mode.  A harder game mode including tinted visuals.


Teammates Feedback

Alexander Joos:

I made three levels, tutorial, courtyard, and fortress. The fortress level was made first, and was not really designed after we added more trap types. As a result, it contains only very few of these trap types since the entire level would have to be drastically changed. We did, however, go back and add the new enemy types to this level. The other two levels were made closer to the implementation of the traps and enemies, so we did not have this problem with them. Also, the location of the goal for the fortress level is not exactly intuitive because of multiple paths that start off going in completely different directions.

If I could do it all over again, I would probably keep the tutorial and courtyard levels the same, but go back and redesign the fortress level so that it incorporates more of the traps and make it so that there is a clear direction for the player to go through. I would, however, keep the multiple paths so that the player has a choice of which way to go.


Matt Lee:

I designed and refined our player character and its game mechanics.  It has come a long way from its alpha implementation and is now a more intuitive design and feels much smoother and faster to control, just as one would expect from a ninja.  It is also surprising to me to see how far the character and the game has come since the alpha, and how much we as a team had accomplished in a mere six weeks.  I am a little disappointed with the lack of polish on our game’s design, but at the same time, I still like the silhouetted, minimalist approach that we decided to take.  In terms of everything else, I felt the character design progressed the fastest when looking at the weekly logs.  I felt that this was the most critical part of the game because if our character did not feel right, then our level design would not be able to effectively complement it after the changes, so having the right character was a precursor to making good level design.

If I could do it all over again, I would love to redesign the ninja so that it better resembles one.  My graphical/modeling skills are sadly subpar, and at the time, the mechanics and level design held higher priority over the appearance of the game which is what we put the majority of our focus on.  Something that I was also unable to do with the character was implement more visual flourishes such as flipping in mid-air and some eye-candy polish to really give the feel that this character is acrobatic.  I would also like to have spent more time designing the HUD to better match the game.  Despite all this, I am very happy with our final product.  I realize there are still some flaws and more work that could be done, but I feel that the team has accomplished a lot in a mere six weeks while we all had busy schedules.

Ryan McCaffrey:

I managed to do all the traps and basics intractable I wanted to do as well as a challenge level. The one thing I wanted to do but did not get to was player upgrades. I was especially happy with the difficulty and fluidity of the game play. I was disappointed with the minimal level of polish we had time to do. If we had to do it all again I’d put al the game objects together with the polish and everything to start with before designing levels. We had to go back and modify levels completely as we changed how the games mechanics worked. We spent a lot of time overhauling levels that if we had waited until we had everything working by itself we would only have to have done once. Overall though I am very happy with how the game turned out.


Tingyu Zhu:

I designed and implemented three types of enemies, each with different AI, the tank was the first type of enemy, it has an trivial AI of rotating the cannon to aim the player and shooting cannonballs with a configurable interval, then after the alpha I got the feedbacks of the enemies should be moving around instead of just stand on the floor, so I developed another two types of enemies, the firewheel and the hammer guard, at the beginning I intended to make the hammer guard charge towards the player and jump on the player when it reaches its attack range, however I failed to find the perfect polynomial function to describe the path of the guard while jumping and thus I make it go straight up and teleport right above the players head and straight down to simulate the “jump on the player’s head and smash” effect, for the firewheel, I intended to make it hovers above the players head and shoot while rotating thus to produce a patterned bullet hell, but I only managed to make it rotate and shoot from the middle instead of the edge, which produces a random bullet hell related to the collisions of the bullets themselves but has nothing to do with the firewheel’s rotation, but I managed to implement the full action after I finally managed to calculate the position and direction of each bullet when shooting;

If I could do this project all over again, I will change the model of the tank so it will be a more medieval like enemies, for instance, an archer or a warrior that throws spears.

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