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  • Results from Game Design Challenge: DualShock 4

    [03.19.13]
    - Danny Cowan

  • Trey Williamson, UC Berkeley Alumni and Consumer Products Coordinator at Ubisoft, Dark Manor

    A co-op game of suspense, horror and conspiracy designed for the PS4 and Dual Shock controller.


    The Horror Begins

    The droning hum of wheels on pavement amplifies the foggy morning stupor. Muted police chatter wafts from the 2-way, empty coffee cups rest in their holders but impart neither spirit nor strength.

    You round a wide bend in the road and your eyes drift off the road to the tall pines and bone white birch woods. Between the canopies flashes a lone stone spire and a frantic recorded radio message blares over the police frequencies, startling you and your partner. You jar the wheel and the car skids on slushy snow. It swerves and crashes into the guardrail.  Memories of the dark events surrounding the disappearance of your friend and mentor lay heavy on your conscience...that voice was unmistakable, you know who it is and where to go.

    An hour later you find yourself at a mansion with the spire tower. The front door is unlocked from the outside, inviting you in. You cross the threshold and the door closes leaving you with nothing but darkness and the sounds of movement.

    The Game

    Dark Manor is a new interactive interpretation of the traditional survival horror game, utilizing the touch, speaker, motion and headphone features of the dualshock controller and the seamless multiplayer of the playstation network. You are trapped in the darkness of the Elrid Manor, forced to navigate the hellish darkness of the building while avoiding its horrific denizens. The manor's lit sanctuary rooms allow you to upgrade your character's abilities (fight/sneak/puzzle) and equipment. They can also hold resources and clues that will help you through the manor.

    The Controller

    The features of the Dual Shock controller are fully utilized to simulate a terrifying and exhilarating experience. With headphones plugged into the jack, the horrors of the manor will growl, scrape and moan in the darkness all around you in full stereo. With the Dual Shock 4 held in front of you, the motion control and force feedback becomes your divining rod, guiding while you sneak past hostiles. The touch pad becomes the precision you need to pick locks and solve puzzles.

    Mechanics

    Movement: When the player wants to move quickly, they will use joysticks to navigate the mansion. When there are strong hostiles nearby players can use the controller's motion control to sneak past. The headphones tell you where hostiles are and the force feedback indicates when you are too close.

    Navigation: Fellow players can join open games at any time. They can talk through your earpiece to provide information about the location of hostiles, hidden passages and even floor plans they uncovered in their own game.

    Puzzles: Pick locks and outsmart booby-traps using the controller touch pad.

    Fighting: Battle with the terrors of the manor using equipment and weapons found in rooms. The controllers six axis will save you when creatures grab hold of your weapons or limbs. 

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