Box Voyage is a puzzle-lite adventure game that focuses heavily on interesting interactions, experimentation, and easy fun. Players will explore various locations in the form of a corporate vacation contextualized as a cruise ship in a box. The different sides of the box are small vignettes comprised of various buttons
Box Voyage is a puzzle-lite adventure game that focuses heavily on interesting interactions, experimentation, and easy fun. Players will explore various locations in the form of a corporate vacation contextualized as a cruise ship in a box. The different sides of the box are small vignettes comprised of various buttons, wheels, and other interactables that you might find in a puzzle box. Players will have to think outside of the box to complete each room by performing tactile interactions, like flipping switches and launching objects, which will ensure they reach their mandated level of fun.
It’s the end of a 12-hour shift, and you’ve been staring at a computer screen, typing away report after report, when your manager calls you and the rest of the people on your floor down to the assembly room. They claim that they know it’s the end of the financial year but you couldn’t care less because you just want to go home. However, they remind you that the government mandates a paid vacation each year, and you start to perk up a little bit. You head back to your desk to find a cardboard box next to your computer. You open it up and pull out a box that contains a puzzle inside. Confused, you examine it further and notice there are many puzzles and a note about a device called the Fun Meter™, which makes sure you’re having mandated fun. You just want to get home, so you buckle down and start tapping, flipping, twisting, and pulling away at your vacation in a box.
Filling up your Fun Meter!
In order to leave the cruise ship, you have to fill up your Fun Meter by completing the rooms. The fun meter filling up shows your boss that you're legally relaxed and you're having fun! The Fun Meter underwent a few iterations as well. At first, it would only show up when the player finished a room. However, sometimes the player couldn't see how much Fun they stored up. So, we fixed two things: 1) We made the Fun Meter always stay out so they player could see it, and 2) We added a flag so they player could see at a glance where they were and where they needed to get to.
Adding the Checklist
The checklist was one of the last features we actually implemented. Through testing, we found that players would have a hard time differentiating what was needed to move onto the next room and what was just for fun. We received feedback that a checklist could help. This way, the player could access it at any time and they could see what needed to be done. After implementing the checklist, the players reported that this helped them tremendously.
Behind the Scenes
It was a challenge in the beginning to navigate from room-to-room in the Unity Editor so the programmers made a system called Compass. Compass would allow the programmers, and any other developers, to quickly select a room and connect how each room would flow together. This saved development time as well as headaches down the road.
Player Focus Determiner (PFD)
This tool as a tracker and repository of information about a player’s play session. It records information about a player’s session and then uploads it to google for us to download and use later as objective metrics to inform our design decisions. It will also give us more insight into what it looks like for a player to have a fun experience. We will be able to compare and contrast play sessions of players that had positive and negative experiences. This tool will also let us see how a player’s attention moves across puzzles and may help us understand common thought processes our players are having. This will help us make better design decisions to help players get through the game and have fun doing it.
The Dev Team!
- Tim Carbone, Systems/Technical Designer
-David Carlos, Lead Producer
- Vedant Chaudhari, Gameplay Programmer
- Nicholas Eckstein, Systems Programmer
- Josh Forchheimer, Lead Audio Designer, Tech Designer
- Garrett Harriman, Level/Puzzle Designer
- Walter Hill, Lead Systems Programmer
- Alexander Hubble, Gameplay Programmer
- Michelle Lee, Room/Prop Artist
- Isaac Mills, Lead Artist, VFX/Animation
- Brett Schwartz, Marketing
- Celina Tong, Room/Prop Artist
- Dakota Williams, Lead Systems Designer, Product Owner
- Mitchell Zasa, Associate Producer