When I first joined Gamecraft at UC Berkeley, I didn’t know what to expect. projects worked on by random groups of students doomed to fail from the start. My fears were assuaged when I was partnered with the brilliant Kevin Royston, who had developed a puzzle game mechanic and some prototypical levels exemplifying the features.
Together we discussed what the game could and should be. How could we make it accessible and challenging at the same time? How could the look, feel, and sound work together to instill in users a flow state, where their brains could be tingled in a pleasant way, without becoming frustrated?
From our discussions, I developed a few mock-ups to clarify some possible aesthetics.
We wanted the game to feel peaceful, clean, a bit like a zen garden. Calm, but thought-provoking.
We ended up leveraging a design style evocative of the Rubik’s Cube, mixed with a simplified, modern aesthetic, and added a tutorial that gets players up to speed quickly. I also picked out a font that added to that feeling, and included the words of encouragement presented after the completion of any level.
Finally I added the finishing touches: the banner for the mobile Android app store and the app icon to be used on both Android and iOS.
As with many student projects, this game was limited by school schedules and eventually by summer separating us by a few states. We are still planning on taking the information we gained from the first few months the game was out to update the game, but have not yet had the opportunity. I’m still very happy with what we have produced. Thank you in particular to Kevin (of course) and also to Joel Terry, for providing a beautiful piece of music that perfectly fit with what we were going for and reinvigorated me to work on this project.