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GCG Feature: 'Postmortem: Wolverhampton University's  Flash Rabbit '

GCG Feature: 'Postmortem: Wolverhampton University's Flash Rabbit'

February 28, 2007 | By Jason Dobson

This latest feature for Gamasutra sister educational site Game Career Guide presents a student postmortem of Flash Rabbit, a game created by students taking part in Wolverhampton University’s Post Graduate Programming for Games and Animation module over a 12 week period.

Designed as “an educational flash-card puzzle game with a maze theme, a fusion of Pac-Man, Frogger, Countdown and Hang-Man,” the game challenged players by having them control a rabbit and collect collect letter balloons to form words while trying to beat the clock and overcome obstacles such as snails and bees.

In this excerpt, the game's developer at Wolverhampton University offers some insight into what role time, particularly the lack of available time, played with regards to Flash Rabbit's development, as well as touches on some of the game's brighter points:

”Time is such a precious commodity. Familiarising myself with the game framework took a lot of time early on but paid off in the end. Designing the graphics took much longer than I would have liked and many graphics were needed. For example, each letter of the alphabet needed to be represented giving dozens of balloons, on-screen letters, together with related flash and solution cards.

Also, early on in the project I anticipated writing this game entirely in 3D and spent time researching how to do it and even produced an early basic prototype which I was especially proud of. However, it soon struck me that time available for the project was tight especially as my 3D skills are limited.”

Despite this, however, the developer states belief that the game's core idea was a sound one, noting:

”As I felt strongly that I wanted to produce a complete game in the time available it was apparent that the basic game itself needed to be simple and achievable. I played around early on with a number of ideas, including a full 3D version of Flash Rabbit, but these would have been too complex in the time available.

Designing graphics and screens boosted my confidence in the chosen game and taking queues from children’s television programmes led to a colour and graphic style that seemed appropriate. I was pleased with the overall look of the game, it is consistent, uses a similar bright and clear colour scheme throughout.”

You can now read the full Game Career Guide feature with more from the students concerning the development successes and difficulties that went into creating Flash Rabbit (no registration required, please feel free to link to this column from external websites).

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