Ebim Studio VR game



Genre : "VR-Arcade"

Role : Programmer & Game Designer

Project's length : 6 weeks


The project is still under NDA, every picture of the prototype will remain hidden for now. If you happened to have a job or intern offer for me, EBIM-Studio allows me to send you some elements of the prototype.




The Company



Ebim is a video game and digital interactive medias studio, specialised in Virtual Reality. The company has currently released one game on steam and realised several client's orders.



Vincent Pellarrey
production director
Ulysse Pignard
technical director
Alexandre Sauderais
artistic director


I was a Game Designer & programmer intern at EBIM-Studio for 6 weeks and it was my first experience using Unreal Engine. I worked with the artistic director but was entirely responsible of the prototype developement.

The project

During my internship, I worked on a confidential project for a client. It's an adaptation of a comic book to a VR video game.


Unreal Engine

I spent approximatly the first two weeks working on learning the engine. Once I had the basics, I joined the official project and started to develop actual features.

Although, I learned and experimented new Unreal's elements al along the internship.

  • Behaviour trees & blackboards
  • Classes in C++
  • Authorization of c++ functions & components
  • Classes in blueprint
  • Projectile movement : angles calculation and bounce forecasting
  • Perception System
  • Blueprint interfaces

Game Design

Once the core gameplay architecture established, it became obvious to me that the project was missing a strong vision and direction. The team does have very different video game interests and didn't see the same end intentions in the project. Even though I worked on a prototype, I had to design with the more ambitious end product in mind . The game being and adaptation, we were often doubting between fidelity and evolution.

That's why I started to organize meetings when we were all available to talk about it. It wasn't easy to do since each member of the company is working on different projects simultaneously, but the meetings we were able to have were very productive.


Vision

The first vision problem we were confronted to was the axis of action of the player's character :
Should we focus on defending of attacking? The defense corresponded to the character : a bodyguard. However, it could leave the player more passive than active. At this point, we already had implemented projectile reflection which consisted in some kind of attack while defending and which would become the main source of power for the player

We were working under agile method : we didn't have much planned and were envisioning many variations. However, this method forced me to refuse many ideas considering the short period I had and the engine I just learned.


Core Gameplay

In my personal vision of Game Design, a project should revolve around few strong principles and most importantly : its core mechanic. In this project, it seemed obvious that projectile reflection was our core, the player had to choose between using a smaller part of his shield to reflect bullets or deploy it entirely to defend a bigger area.
Testing, it didn't feel enough. Very passive, the player would spend half of his time arm up targeting an enemy and waiting for the bullets to come, the action is to slow and the rythm was bad. We would have to find and implement tricks to smooth the process and that's where I worked on invisible tweeks like timing handling and player targeting forcing enemies to shoot


VR : a world of interactions


In a VR Game, it is essential to have interactive elements in the environment to support the immersion and make the game fun to play. Answering our lack of tools available for the player, we worked on different elements we could implement.



Level Design

Many important problematics for the project's future couldn't be developed during my internship.
We quickly agreed on a VR experience based on constrained real movement with a minmum zone of 1.5m x 1.5m rather than using any teleportation type to move. Although, I did think about different games phases were we could teleport the player in the level from zone to zone once an objective accomplished.

The player should be able to have different ways of approaching a situation and have tools to do it as he wish. Several elements would affect this option and that's why I planned different situations.