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  • Results from Game Design Challenge: The New Sound

    [12.22.09]
    - GameCareerGuide.com staff

  • Charles Reimers, Senior Software Engineer, Bad Vibes

    The player is trapped in a world of crystalline beauty and needs to create a path to freedom before the ever growing background tones make their head explode.

    This would be a logic-puzzle game.

    In the background is a sequence of electronic tones.

    The play would be on a field of 'crystals'. The crystals would be colored to indicate the sonic wave tones that will shatter them. Later in the game, crystals may require a combination of tones or especially strong waves. The sonic waves can be bounced off crystal surfaces if they do not shatter them. Bouncing a wave off a crystal may also transpose the tone and always weaken the wave.

    The player is provided with a set of objects, color coded to indicate the tones they interact with:

    Resonators - Put out sonic waves and have an indicated arc through which they put out the sonic waves.

    Transposers - Any sonic wave passing through a transposer will be modified up or down the scale, for example, turning a C into a D.

    Mufflers - Absorbs any sonic wave that hits it. Later in the game, selective mufflers absorb only the indicated tone.

    Deflectors - Mirrors for sonic waves. Later in the game, selective deflectors only deflect the indicated tone.

    Transmitters - Transmitters are actually two linked objects, one absorbs the sonic wave, the other re-emits it.

    Amplifiers - Amplifiers boost the wave strength.

    The player also has a special 'booster' object. This object takes the current background tone sequence and boosts it loudly enough that the Resonators can form waves from the tones.

    The tones arrive in sequence and some tones might last longer than others. So the player will need to set up their equipment such that they can shatter a path through the crystals on the play field using the tones in the order that they are given. Since waves do not travel instantaneously, the player may delay a wave of one tone until after another tone has arrived.

    Each new level will add some new set of tones to the existing sequence.

    Crystal shapes will be simple early on, basicly fuzzy blobs with no flat surface to deflect tones. Later, they will have facets to deflect waves.

    The player does not have a limited number of times they can use the booster on any given level, but each time the booster is used, the background sequence gets louder. As the background gets louder, it might randomly trigger a resonator, potentially messing up the players plans. When the background reaches a certain level, the player's head explodes. Certain rooms may require the user to use the booster more than once.

    The tone sequence is always playing in the background, but when the booster is used, the tones come to the foreground and each interaction also generates it's own sound.

    The biggest 'win' in the game will be progressing through the levels. Additional score is given for shattering crystals and bonuses given for clearing a room or creating musical constructs (such as trills, chords, etc). Bonuses may also reduce the background level.

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