This is what it looks like from above, but trust me it looks normal and better from the players point of view.
It's done! My level is done and ready for experiencing. Go check it out (there are screenshots and a video there also). It's called Abandoned and is a simple level with things I've been trying out in Unity.
This is what it looks like from above, but trust me it looks normal and better from the players point of view.
So...I think I found my dream job! Education + Game Design exists!!
"John wanted to raise his kid right. He took an active role in her education. When it was time for her to start school, John met directly with her teachers to understand how and what they wanted to teach his child, his daughter, his Lily.
It was in one such meeting he had his epiphany. The theories his daughter's teachers were presenting to him sounded familiar. They talked about teaching at one level, then moving to a next, then a next — a process they called "scaffolding." To John, it sounded almost exactly like game design.
"That's what I do every day," John says. "That's my job. It's to do exactly that, to relate to something that seems impossibly difficult, let you bang on it for a while, let you step away from it for a minute or try another route or something like that, and then you come back and now you can get past it.
"So I'm hearing this from a teacher. ... Different language, but so [many] of the same ideas. And the truth is, [scaffolding is] why kids are addicted to games." "
This is a small part from the article "How video games can change the world, one child at a time". Thank you Polygon for sharing this with me.
So after a very long time of not even touching the Unity icon on my desktop, I will finally start working on my level again. The reason I haven't finished it yet, is because I'm on my final year at the University and this last course required a LOT of attention and time, so there was no time for game development. Now it's coming to an end and I will finally get to it. I just opened the program for a bit today, and well, I was greeted with a Unity bug which never occurred before. Basically no interactive cloth for my level. Interactive cloths somehow drop the FPS below 1 and obviously it's unbearable to work or play like that.
In a week I shall begin my work again and after that I am really curious to install Unity 4.3 to play a bit with the 2D feature.
Hey it's been a loooong time since I updated my Level Design project. That's because I changed the scale of my terrain and player, so now it's a lot bigger which means now I have a lot more work to do. I've done about 1/3 and it seems that it's going to take more time than predicted. But I'll get it done, I love how it's turning out! I decided what's it going to be but I'm not saying exactly!
Here's the stuff I've been working on:
I added a pause menu and a night and day setting which also changes the Skybox accordingly.
As you can see I have other lights like a flashing light on top of a tower and a torch which I will make pickable later on. I only added a few lights now but at the end it will have a lot more.
I have also made a forest with grass, bushes and different types of textures and a nature trail that goes around half of the terrain. There are also invisible Colliders all around the level to create walkable and restricted areas.
What I'm really proud of though, is a little area with a small house, a boat house, a pond, a private garden and various other game objects.
The boat has an Interactive cloth on top which I found very playful! I will add more of those as I progress.
The level is going great and I love paying attention to little details so it takes me a bit more time to create than I thought. I add lots of ground textures to make it more realistic, I change the color of the water in different areas, I play with the ground height and many more. It's really fun!
Well, I started practicing level design, which actually means just messing around with the Terrain tools in Unity. I have a goal to make my first level a little village, or a remote cabin in the woods, I'm still figuring this out. Most importantly I'm going to finish it. This is important for me, otherwise I have failed.
This is what it looks like from above. Yeah I know it looks like...um, unfinished...
So that's about it, I will continue to work on it and hopefully will have a playable and good looking level at the start of next year.
So I just had an online, totally reliable (insert sarcasm here) test about whether I'm more right-brained or left-brained. Hmm...
You can take the test from here.
Thank you for taking the Creativity Test. The results show your brain dominance as being:
Left Brain 58%
Right Brain 42%
You are more left-brained than right-brained. Your left brain controls the right side of your body. In addition to being known as left-brained, you are also known as a critical thinker who uses logic and sense to collect information. You are able to retain this information through the use of numbers, words, and symbols. You usually only see parts of the "whole" picture, but this is what guides you step-by-step in a logical manner to your conclusion. Concise words, numerical and written formulas and technological systems are often forms of expression for you. Some occupations usually held by a left-brained person include a lab scientist, banker, judge, lawyer, mathematician, librarian, and skating judge.
Your Left Brain Percentages
54% Reality-based (Your most dominant characteristic)
14% Verbal (Your least dominant characteristic)
Your Right Brain Percentages
40% Fantasy-oriented (Your most dominant characteristic)
5% Intuitive (Your least dominant characteristic)
What Do These Percentages Mean? Low percentages are common in the Brain Type Test and are not indicative of intelligence. Instead, medium to high scores (30 - 50%) are desirable, as they show an ability to utilize a processing method without an abnormal reliance on it. Special focus should be paid to highly dominant (50% or above) or highly recessive (0 - 30%) methods, as they tend to limit your approach when learning, memorizing, or solving problems.
If you have Highly Dominant characteristics, your normal thinking patterns will naturally utilize these methods. Conscious effort is required to recognize the benefits of other techniques. Using multiple forms of information processing is the best way to fully understand complex issues and become a balanced thinker.
If you have Highly Recessive characteristics, your normal thinking patterns naturally ignore these methods. You may only consider these under-utilized techniques when "all else fails," or possibly not at all. It is important to recognize the benefits of all of your brain's capabilities in order to become a balanced thinker.
LEFT BRAIN CATEGORIES
Reality-based processing is used by the left hemisphere as a method for processing information with a basis on reality. This processing tool focuses on rules and regulations. An example of this would be how a left-brained person would completely understand the repercussions of turning in a late assignment or failing a test. A left-brained person also usually easily adjusts to changes in their environment.
Your Reality-based Analysis
You process information with a firm basis on reality, but because of this, may lack creativity. You are able to easily create or adapt to rules and regulations. For example, you understand the repercussion of your actions. You easily adjust to change in the environment and probably do not become emotionally involved in many tasks.
Logical processing is a method that is used by the left hemisphere to take information piece by piece and put it all together to form a logical answer. When information is received through reading or listening, the left hemisphere will look for different bits of information that will allow it to produce a logical conclusion. This aspect of the left hemisphere is what aids you in solving math problems and science experiments.
Your Logical Analysis
When processing information using this method, you may consider the information before you and produce a logical answer, or you may tend to go with your gut. You may discover that you can "guess" your way through S.A.T. questions about as accurately as you can deduce them. It is important that you nurture your ability to use logic whenever it is needed, but do not neglect other methods of processing information if you hit a logical roadblock.
Linear processing is a method by the left hemisphere to process information. In this process, the left brain takes pieces of information, lines them up, and proceeds to arrange them into an order from which it may draw a conclusion. The information is processed from parts to a whole in a straight, forward, and logical progression.
Your Linear Analysis
When processing information using this method, you will occasionally feel the need to see the "whole picture" before you are able to achieve results. At other times, you are able to piece all of the parts together in a straight and logical progression to form a whole, which then enables you to understand what you have processing. The information, your mood, and your level of comfortable are all factors that determine your response to a linear processing problem.
Sequential processing is a method used by the left hemisphere for processing information. The information that is received is processed in order from first to last. Information is processed in a systematic, logical manner. Through sequential processing, you can interpret and produce symbolic information such as language, mathematics, abstraction, and reasoning. This process is used to store memory in a language format. Activities that require sequential processing include spelling, making a "to-do" list, and many aspects of organization.
Your Sequential Analysis
You show moderate ability to organize information sequentially. You are capable of processing information you receive in a systematic, logical order from first to last. However, at times you will process information you receive quite randomly, or may give it only a semblance of order. You are probably an average mathematician and speller, and may or may not enjoy tasks such as making "to-do" lists.
Symbolic processing is a method associated with the left hemisphere that is used for processing the information of pictures and symbols. The majority of functions associated with academics involve symbols such as letters, words, and mathematical notations. This process is what aids you to excel in tasks such as linguistics, mathematics, and memorizing vocabulary words and mathematical formulas.
Your Symbolic Analysis
You have the ability to process the information of symbols at times, but you may need to first view the real object before you can understand what you are trying to process. For example, in solving math problems it occasionally helps you to "draw out" the problem, which allows you to better understand it through visualization. At other times you do not need visualization to aid you in forming your answers.
Verbal processing is a method used by the left hemisphere to process our thoughts and ideas with words. For example, through verbal processing, a left-brained person giving directions may say, "From this point continue east for two miles and turn north onto Bellevue Road. Continue north on Bellevue Road for seven miles and turn west on Main Street". With verbal processing, exact, logical directions are given in a very sequential manner compared to a right-brained person who, in giving the same directions, would use more visual landmarks.
Your Verbal Analysis
You are not a verbal person. When you process your thoughts, you tend to use very few words, preferring instead to illustrate a problem or solution. You often find yourself in situations where it is hard for you to "find the right words." Upon reading or hearing new information, you must first create a "mental video" before you can process and understand the information of your thoughts. For example, when giving directions, you probably use many gestures with your hands such as pointing and leaning, and also refer to visual structures such as "a McDonalds" or "the big tree" instead of street names or exact mileage.
RIGHT BRAIN CATEGORIES
Fantasy-oriented processing is used by the right hemisphere as a method for processing information with creativity. It focuses much less on rules and regulations than the processing method of a left-brained person. Due to the fantasy-oriented processing mechanism of a right-brained person, they do not adjust well to change. Instead of adapting to the change in the environment, a right-brained person attempts to change it back to the way they liked it. But fantasy-oriented processing also provides the advantage of creativity to right-brained individuals, and since emotion is integral of the right side of the brain, anything a fantasy-oriented person becomes involved in emotionally will aid their ability to learn.
Your Fantasy-oriented Analysis
You have the ability to use both creativity and reality to process the information you receive. This is a unique gift that allows you to both focus on rules and regulations but to also act with creativity. You are able to adjusting to change, even though you might not like it, and you can become emotionally involved in your work if it interests you.
Nonverbal processing is a method used by the right hemisphere to process our thoughts with illustrations. Reliance on this method is why it is occasionally difficult for right-brained people to "find the right words" in certain situations. A right-brained person cannot just read or hear information and process it, but first must make a mental video to better understand the information they have received. For example, through nonverbal processing, a person giving directions may say, "Continue going straight until you see a big, red-brick courthouse. At the courthouse turn right, and go down that street for a couple of miles until you see a gray stone church which will be on your right. Straight across from the church is the road to the left you need to take." With nonverbal processing, the directions that are given are extremely visual compared to the exact, sequential directions that would be given by a left-brained person.
Your Nonverbal Analysis
When processing your thoughts and ideas, you use tend to use both illustrations and words. When giving directions, you probably use both visual illustrations such as, "keep going until you see a McDonalds on your right; then turn left at the Home Depot", and technical terms such as, "travel for two miles and turn east onto First Street."
Random processing is a method used by the right hemisphere for processing information. The information that is received is processed without priority. A right-brained person will usually jump from one task to another due to the random processing by their dominant right hemisphere. Random processing is, of course, the opposite of sequential processing therefore making it difficult for right-brained individuals to choose to learn in sequence. In order to overcome this, a right-brained person may want to attempt to learn sequence by using colors since the right hemisphere is sensitive to color. For example, you may want to associate the first step with green, the second step with blue, and the last step with red. Consistently using the same sequence will allow you to see that this strategy can be applied to many tasks involving sequence.
Your Random Analysis
You tend to not process data randomly, preferring instead to follow a systematic, logical order from first to last. You have difficulty making "leaps of logic" which prevents you from making unique discoveries, or adapt to change during your thinking process.
Concrete processing is a method associated with the right hemisphere that is used for processing things that can be seen or touched. It processes much of the information you receive from real objects. For example, a right-brained person is not just satisfied that a mathematical formula may work, but will want to know why it works. A strongly concrete person often finds it easier to solve a mathematical problem by "drawing it out" because it allows them to visualize it. The more a concrete person can visualize something the easier it is for them to understand it.
Your Concrete Analysis
When you process information you have received, the real object is not important to you. You do not have to use the real object to make sense of what you have processed. For example, if solving a math problem you do not have to "draw out" the problem in order to find or understand the answer, and you do not have to visualize something to understand it. However, this also means you often neglect the physical information provided by a concrete example. In other words, you may miss the forest for the trees, trying to deduce something complex when the answer is plain to see.
Holistic processing is a method used by the right hemisphere to process information. The information is processed from whole to parts. A right-brained person, through holistic processing, is able to see the big picture first, but not the details that accompany it. A strongly holistic person may often find that prior to listening to a lecture given by an instructor, they must first read the chapter so that they better understand what the lecture is about. This function is also what provides to you your visual spatial skills. It also aids in tasks such as dancing and gymnastics. Through holistic processing, memory is stored in auditory, visual, and spatial modalities.
Your Holistic Analysis
You have difficulty seeing the whole picture, especially at the beginning of a project. You tend to process information you receive from its parts to its whole in a straight, progressive manner. When given a task, you tend to not bother asking "why," but instinctively are able to do it.
Intuitive processing is a method that is used by the right hemisphere to process information based on if it "feels" right or not. For example, a right-brained person may choose an answer on a test because they had a "gut" feeling and often they will be correct. Another example of this is how a right-brained person will know the correct answer to a math problem but will not understand the procedure of how they arrived at the correct answer. A right-brained person will usually have to start with the answer and work their way backwards in order to be able to see and understand the parts and process that create the whole.
Your Intuitive Analysis
When you process information using this method, you do not rely on "gut" feelings but take the information and put it together piece by piece to form your conclusions. You often look at all of the different bits of information before piecing together your solution. You probably excel in such tasks as solving math problems and performing science experiments, because the intuitive method is not needed.
Well, well, well. It's 26/11/2013 and I just came back home from the University. What better to do than study? I say write my feelings about the presentation I just gave on The Last of Us...and then study.
So what is this about?
Once upon a time I showed to my professor of the 'Philosophy-Ethics' course, a short video I made from clips of The Last of Us (TLOU). I meant only to share the world of TLOU but then he said: "How about you make a video of the game and present it to the class, analyzing it with the theories we've learned so far? And then we can have a conversation on the whole thing"
I said: "Well, why not sir?" but inside of me I was saying "HELL YEEEEAAAH!!!!!". This was going to be soooo cool.
And so I started working on the video which wasn't at all hard since I knew the editing program and the game inside out. The hard part was to make a miniature of the game. There was so much I wanted to show, but in the end I fitted the necessary parts in only 45 minutes. Yeah 45 minutes is not much for an 18 hour game. It showed many dilemmas, the deaths, the gore, the world, the story and of course the ending. It was really good. You can find it here actually.
After the video was done, I started working on my presentation - what I was going to say, point out, how to state my opinion, what questions to ask, what to analyze and how, etc etc. The picture above is the start of my presentation (I kept the same feeling/theme of TLOU so I had a simplistic presentation with a Firefly logo in the corner). Then before the actual day of the presentation I printed two images-wallpapers of TLOU and plasticized them. Also, because I like holistic experiences, I found the soundtrack of the main menu of the game, which is peaceful, sad and atmospheric and decided to use it before the start of the presentation to create a mood.
So today was the day. I blue-tacked the wallpapers on either side of the sheet on the wall, launched the first page of the presentation and put the soundtrack to quietly play in the background. It was something like this:
I dimmed the lights and it was beautiful. So atmospheric!
Then my whole presentation began. I talked a few minutes about what they were going to see, what is it about, some background story of the characters and then we started the video. After that I continued analyzing what we saw, talking about Utilitarianism, Ethical Egoism, the Kantian Imperative and Ethical Intuitionism and how we can see all of these theories unfold in the game. At the end I let them talk and express their opinions.
It was AMAZING! Sarah's death at the beginning was showed in less than 5 minutes and GOD the reactions! I could see/hear people holding back tears at that sad and intense moment. Less than 5 minutes and they weren't even playing. Well done Naughty Dog.
The were also very shocked and flinched at every fighting moment because of the brutality and intensity. There was also a point which made me think "this is so powerful" but at the same time "how weak are you?". At the scene where Ellie kills David there was so much disgust and shock in the air that two particular girls got up and left. That moment shows the powerful feeling of real brutality in such a world. Of course my own personal thought about these two girls, the "how weak are you?", is me judging a (probably) normal reaction, which maybe I shouldn't. But come on, haven't they ever seen a 14 year-old girl kill a guy with a machete by cutting his face open about 10 times? What no?...oh...
Another great moment was the part where Sam reveals his bite and then when Henry kills him and then himself. The tension of that moment, the vanity and the unfairness of a little boy dying, was shown in the reaction of the students.
Many more moments made them awkward but they kept watching non-stop, their eyes glued on the screen, and that says something since students usually take their phone out because they' re bored.
What was kind of peculiar was the ending scene. No reactions whatsoever. As if their breaths were taken away! But really, I think their brain was working, processing. Even when the story ended, they were still left in that surgery room with the dilemma Joel never faced. "What is he doing? Should he do that? Is that...right?"
And then the video ended and I asked: "Who disagrees with what Joel did?". Three-four people raised their hand, along with the professor. "Who agrees with what Joel did?". Double, triple hands in the air. Most hands where in the air! There were also some others who didn't know what to choose.
In 45 minutes, this journey made them change their minds on dilemmas like these. Why do I say 'changed their minds'? Because at the time we studied Utilitarianism nearly everybody agreed on the theme "Sacrifice the few-save the many". And now...aren't they supporting otherwise?
Yes they are. Everybody wanted to talk about the ending and not everything before it, even though there were interesting dilemmas too. Of course I knew that, that's why I prepared my presentation centered around it.
It just stirs you. It is the opposite of what we expect. It is the opposite of what we've learned to expect. All heroes at the end of movies, games, books save the world. Why didn't Joel? But they didn't care why, the why only drew them to think about the ending. The thing they cared about was the truth. The ending showed them the truth and analyzing it made them grasp it, understand it and unfold reality. Because the truth is that we aren't heroes, we are everyday people like Joel and we want to analyze the ending so much because we can't believe that this is who we are. Maybe this is far-fetched? Maybe it's my opinion? But it's one way to see why people all around the world talk about the ending more than anything else.
So we've talked about it and more people than before agreed with Joel. And they gave reasons. One girl displayed the reason I made the video 45 minutes and not 10. Why I showed Joel and Ellie's journey. She said: "If she showed us only the ending or asked us would you kill one girl to save humanity, I would say yes. But then after this, after I saw what they've been through I just can't say that anymore." That's true. That's why I hate philosophical questions, the ones that usually philosophers ask, because they are shallow and 1/1000000 of the entire story. We only express our opinion about a sentence, consisting of 15 words and a question mark, and if we're "ethical" then we are right. What about the history of that person we are deciding about? What about their life, their character? Where is the respect, empathy, understanding and consideration of what they do and who they are? We don't care we just have to decide if a sentence is right or wrong. Ridiculous. I'm glad that the students finally realized that.
Lastly, it was incredible to see how many people agreed with Joel. They didn't play the game, they didn't have the time to emotionally connect with the characters, their mind was into the stereotypical, hollywood template of the hero saving the world. Yet, it seems this didn't matter. They could see. What is it that people say: "Step into others people's shoes" - that's when you understand them and that's when you should be allowed to judge.
This presentation was a great chance for me to show the game and its theme. But I didn't want to do this because of how cool it is. It's because it's a kind of game that you can talk about and should show to other people to make them critically think. Use their brains, change their opinions, dig deeper. It's chances like these that make these kind of games great. That I can use it in a classroom says a lot. Again, well done Naughty Dog! This is one worthwhile story and more people need to know about it.
I'm doing my best to show games like these to people. In a few days, if all is well, I'm going to show to my Sociology teacher Gone Home. I'm really excited and hopefully we can advertise it later to other people too. Some things are worth to be praised. So praise them.
Long live video games!
Unfortunately that's the only footage I have. That's before the start of the presentation, before the students arrived and also before I dimmed the lights. And unfortunately the music can't be heard in the video... Best.Video.Ever!
So I decided to write down a long, boring list of the games I like. I guess I will also update this whenever it needs to be updated.
God that's a long list, why don't you just list every freaking game you played!
Just some quotes that I like. They're good conversation starters! But also good to think about...The title is my personal motto. This list is going to be updated now and then.
Happy birthday to you!
Happy birthday to you!
Through the blackness awaken
To a terrible sight
In a glimpse has been taken
His loved one’s young life
And the years passed
Through much pain and toil
But one day has arrived
With a hopeful seed in the soil
Armed with trust
And her powerful lead
They rose over the one
Who dishonored their deal
But a new deal arose
And it felt like a spark
As one woman has given them
A light in the dark
The girl’s heart still soft
But her life was stone hard
A balance it seemed
Of light in the dark
Far away in the danger
Beyond the doors of haven
A way has been laid
Of either dove or raven
But in vain were the travels
And in vain they always end
For the powerful leader
Had through hell to descent
Although hope has been lost
And the world became dark
In her footsteps he followed
As she warmth up his heart
And the days passed
And the storms were only stronger
But with friendly faces met
Alone they had to tread no longer
There was fear in the sunlight
And horrors in the darkness
But in the end, as it always ends
There’s only vanity and endless sadness
Cold are the nights
The days, the unknown are bringing
But the birds high in the trees
Are still happily singing
All metal turned towards them
A day just like every other
But a smile behind the metal
Revealed dear old brother
“I shall help you, opened armed
Whatever you will need
The heavy burden from your hands
Although, I will not lift”
A surge of anger from his words
A shot from far away
It seems like days in havens are
Just like any other day
Betrayal flowed beneath her skin
Her greatest fear, a lone soul
She will be now like then
But abandonment was not
An option to be chosen
As with her he had finally felt
His heart to be less frozen
The mirrors were awaiting
The lab of toil and sweat
But their reflections on the glass
Revealed a different threat
A blurry vision through his eyes
A pain from hell itself
A distant voice calling his name
He hoped it wasn’t Death
A lone soul seems to be
As strong as a lone wolf
What happens though when more arrive
With a terrible, hidden truth?
And just like any animal does
It either fights or hides
Our wolf became the hunted when
The hunters came to rise
Behind cold steel she lay where
For freedom there’s no path
But just like any animal does
This time she showed her wrath
And even though he fought through hell
And even though he arrived
She needn’t him to help her when
Alone she endured and survived
Time, they say is a healer
But some scars never fade
No doctor can ever sew
The deep cut of this blade
Even if the dark was dense
It always becomes bright
As the scent of soil and beast
Within them awoke the light
Behind the veil it was revealed
A terrible truth of death
It wasn’t an option, not for him
To take his child’s last breath
Armed with love and armed with hate
He swam against the flood
The flood soon became more red
As it was filled with blood
Countless hopes, in love were lost
In a life that offers pain
This time it ended differently
As none of it was in vain
In lies she stood, with bare feet
But she could hear their screams
For she has once screamed like them too
But only her voice lives
“When the blood has been shed
When the lake’s made of tears
Just remember to live
For the following years”
“Even though you mean well
Even though you are right
I just can’t shake the feeling
That the dark won the light”
My 'Blog' isn't exactly my news channel. Mostly I will post things I'd like to express.