Nyanko-Wan is a local multiplayer game created in a weekend for the Global Game Jam 2014.

 
 

Nyanko-Wan at the Berlin Game Developers Meetup (Meltdown Bar)

 

THE PROJECT

My role in the project was: Concept, graphic, game and interaction design, illustration, art direction and mobile client development in HTML5. (HTML / CSS / JS)

I worked with Giles Coope (Unity & Node.js coding), and Raphael de Courville (layout & graphic design) to conceptualize and bring to life this game where 32 players can play at the same time on a big screen using their mobile devices.

The game version shown in the video is the final version we presented at the Global Game Jam 2014. Nyanko-Wan won the public award.

 
 

CONCEPT

The game draws inspiration from different aspects of Japanese POP culture. Based on the UFO-Catcher machines, really popular in Japanese arcades, the players control different toy characters who have to avoid being grabbed by the mighty claw, which comes down and pulls them out of the machine. The last player standing wins the match. 

Character designs are based on different pop culture icons, with heavy Japanese influence such as different video-game and anime characters, musicians, and other references to traditional Japanese culture and history.

 A real UFO machine in Japan. Original photo by  Ishikawa Ken

A real UFO machine in Japan. Original photo by Ishikawa Ken

 
 

TECHNOLOGY

The game consists of a Node.js server, a desktop client which runs the main action (Unity), and mobile clients (HTML5) with which the players can control their characters. We used Socket.io to manage the connections between server and clients.


OTHER PROJECTS

As a regular team at Game Jams, I also worked with Raphaël de Courville and Giles Coope in other projects, here are some of them:


VITO'S VENDETTA

Vito's Vendetta was our first incursion into local multiplayer games by using multiple devices. It was a Russian-roulette game in which the public could affect the of the game by voting in real time on their mobile phones, tablets, or computers.

The game also used motion tracking via PlayStation Move controllers, which was elegantly resolved by Mr. de Courville.

It was conceived and developed in 48 hours during the 2013 Global Game Jam.

 

POPE IDOL

Pope Idol is a local multiplayer game created in 8 hours for a Berlin Mini Game Jam. Its aesthetics and sound are based on classic computer games ranging from the ZX Spectrum era, to DOS games running in a 286 computer with a CGA card.

The game includes extensive references to common graphics and hardware problems of the time.