Thursday, July 30, 2015


Halifax has a monthly meetup called the "Halifax Game Collective," where local game developers discuss ideas and collaborate on projects. There is a bi-monthly pageant, where members have one month to create and present a game based on a theme.

From January to February, the theme was "Ghost Stories," and I made a game called "Pinstripes." (Here's a clip from the presentation, courtesy of Adam Hartling: HGC Ghost Story Pageant)

You can play a demo of the game here:


(Please note: the Unity Player does not run in Google Chrome.)

The link above will take you the level I presented at the "Ghost Stories" pageant. Everything you see was made by me, from scratch, in about 30 days; including all art, animations, and programming. (I was also working full-time, so most of the work was done between 10pm and 3am.) This level was made to demonstrate all of the game's content, so the puzzle is fairly complicated, and makes for a poor tutorial.

The controls are:

A and D, or Left and Right, to run,
W or Up to Jump,
Space bar to possess or eject from a host,
E to throw switches,
Shift to walk, instead of run
Ctrl to shoot the guard's gun (This is a bad idea, but fun).

How to play:
You are a ghost, called Jimmy Pinstripes, trying to escape the prison where you died.

You do this by jumping from body to body, using different hosts to accomplish different tasks.

Possessing a guard lets you open doors, for example.

While possessing a prisoner lets you use secret tunnels.

Of course, guards shoot prisoners on sight.

And if Jimmy's host dies, so does Jimmy.

Essentially, the game is a puzzle, based on learning a set of rules through trial and error. The rules for this demo level are:

-Jimmy can walk through bars, and falls through grates,
-Jimmy is pushed upward by fans,
-Jimmy cannot walk through bright lights,
-If Jimmy's host dies, so does Jimmy,
-Guards can open doors,
-Prisoners can use secret tunnels, hidden behind posters,
-Guards shoot prisoners on sight,
-Lightning is dangerous.

All of the characters are made from line renderers, which are flat planes that always face the camera. These lines are bound by a script to a 3d skeleton, which allows me to make complex animations. Object rotations are simulated using texture offsets, and depth is simulated using a tint color where necessary.

That isn't a very efficient way to make characters, but I really liked the effect, and I found the mechanical limitations lead to a compelling art style.

I will add a link to the Pinstripes demo on the top bar, and post content updates when I can.

Thanks for reading, happy jailbreaking everybody!

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