The Countdown For Team Decision Makers

Hello everyone,


This will be my last blog post as a member of Team Decision Makers as we are winding down Centre Term, so I will be recapping the work put into our game and portfolio today. Because we were given more time to work on the final touches of our game, we all decided to run over the library as quickly as possible so that we could get a quiet workspace along with some other factors. I personally needed to reassure myself that I had used the correct pages in the books I was using for sources, as well as get my groups approval that I had cited those novels correctly in my section of the portfolio. Fisher had to work on adding a couple more words to expand upon his topic of reference games. We also explored the internet for a decent amount of time wondering how to cite video games and if that was even possible. (It is.) Edward Lee and Kaden worked on adding the home screen to Twine, which took videos on videos to teach us how. Will was dying from a stomach bug.


Our main focus coming out of this past weekend as a group was to focus on the portfolio. Today, we all finished our individual parts. The only thing we really have to do on the writing portion at this point is critique one anothers so we can have a strong, well put together group portfolio. We finished the concluding comments the day before yesterday as a group, and left all other 5 pieces of the portfolio for individual work. We should have the portfolio pieced completely together with every section read carefully by our group members by tomorrow, so that it is ready to submit.


Edward Lee has been running the creation of Twine on his computer for the entirety of this class, so we needed to figure out how to plug in a home screen, as asked of us. Every video game has some sort of loading screen where you can click “play” or other options with some sort of background photo or video that is relevant to the game. Although it may have taken a lengthy amount of time, Kaden and Edward Lee helped one another by tinkering with Twine after watching several educational videos, which finally resulted in our loading screen. We also are thinking about throwing in one last hidden picture within the game within the next day, possibly for taking the least popular pathway. However, before we show everyone or have them locked into our game, we need to verify with Prof. Harney that we can use these photos in our game legally.


We are very excited as a group for the next two days as we finally get to show off all the hard work that went into making our game. Tonight and tomorrow night we will be getting together as a group to practice our presentation, and have each person present their section by themselves, then we will all come up and try to nail that twenty five minute mark. Thank you everyone for following along through this journey, the final product comes soon! Cannot wait for you guys to see and play it!


Team Decision Makers: One Step From Living Or Dying

Hello everyone,


In today and a little bit of yesterday’s class time, we as a team have put in more work than ever into our storyline, creating even more pathways into our game to show the reality that one simple mistake in Nazi Germany could change your fate quickly. Also, we have figured out Twine quite well and at least know how to plug in our text and make the story flow and spread out. However, there are some things we need to figure out within these next few days to maximize the benefit of using Twine.


Over the past few days, we gradually noticed that although we are not judged on how long our game is, nor are we required to make an hour long production, our game does not take very long to play through. We still desire as a group to make little bit lengthier of a game, so we doubled down on our effort to the storyline. At this point, there is at least five separate endings, but we have 3 or more in the works that could result in victory or death based on one simple decision. Due to our production taking place in such a radical place and time in history, it is accurate that one misstep could result in life or death. People were killed frequently in Germany during World War II for misspeaking and accidently disrespecting leaders. In fascist countries, a citizens were heavily punished for showing dislike toward their leaders. As mentioned today in class, this still happens with Kim Jong-Un in North Korea today.


As said before, our focus has been on expanding the story with more decisions and details, and this affects Twine directly. Adding more detail does not change much except putting more text into the box, but adding more decisions changes a lot. More choices equals more text boxes, therefore more text and details, but most of all, more decisions makes for a really confusing “tree” on Twine. There are lot of branches running all over the place, making it challenging to keep your focus on the correct one. Some decisions make the player come back to the same place after a couple of turns, which looks very confusing to us on Twine. As we add more, these paths may run together even more and present even more visual challenges to us.


Twine’s one weakness is the lack of visual for the player, so we are continuing to investigate how we can improve upon that through pictures, sounds, and text changes. We have been looking up how to do these things but it seems pretty challenging. We are going to meet up as a group these next few nights and figure them out. Adding pictures adds the direct aspect of a visual, which is appealing to the player. I’m not sure if sounds are even possible, but if they are, sounds can provide the recognizable noise of military parades or doors opening, which once again can help make the player feel like they are in the game. Changing the text design can force a certain mood shift in scenes that are more intense, causing the consumer to feel the attitude of the game more. In the coming days, we have a lot of work to do with the storyline and plugging that into Twine. I’m confident we will figure out the additions to Twine to make our game even better. Until next time!


A Second Character? Women in Nazi Germany?

Hello friends,


Today in class our group discussed and put into words much of the founding work for our storyline, including the start of Gunter’s role and how his life journey begins. As Will mentioned in his presentation today, we are working heavily on the game and allowing for the portfolio to be worked on after the bulk of the game is created. Our opening scene starts when our protagonist is fifteen years old, in Berlin, Germany, 1922. Gunter is recruited to join the Hitler Youth. Flash forward to 1938, and his father has passed away from old age. At his father’s funeral, he is approached by Erwin Rommel, and asked if he wants to succeed his father and become a general. At this point, our character is faced with his first decision. For now, this is what we have written down, but we are considering a multitude of ways to continue after this point.


However, the main point of this blog post today is to discuss an interesting point brought up in class after Will’s presentation. A student asked if we had considered bringing in a female character as a choice so that we would have more representation. During our group work time, we decided after some deliberation that although we completely understand that providing more representation allows for a happier and broader audience because it is more relatable to consumers, it also doubles the amount of work we have to do on an already strenuous schedule. Creating a new and completely different story for a another character is certainly a fascinating addition, as it could be quite refreshing, and allow for even more coverage of historical events in Nazi Germany. However, we still believe that in this particular case, the time constraint makes it very challenging. Also, our plan as a group has been to try and stay as historically accurate as possible, and when Hitler took over, he shut down all roles for women in society.


Before the Nazi regime, the Weimar Republic had pushed for women’s rights, seen through the passing of the Weimar Constitution, giving women their right to vote, equality in legal matters, and equal rights in marriage. Although some rights were still withheld from women, it was a step forward in society. When Adolf Hitler rose into power, women’s rights took a backseat. He utilized friendships with influential women in society when running for leader of Germany to gain sponsorships and trust from female voters. However, he quickly discouraged higher education for women, and basically forced women to slide back into the role of being bound to the household. He was a rarity, being single as a leader. Later on, he was married to Eva Braun, who was completely unknown to the German public, showing the housewife and hidden job that women in Nazi society earned. Even though he had lower votes from women, he still got women to convince their husbands to join Hitler’s army. Overall, adding a woman as a second option would not be viable due to the lack of futures. The plot has no “winning” outcome.


I know that we are not creating a second character, but this research has come to be very interesting relating to our game, as a woman would add more depth to our work. Thank you for the suggestion in class and the questions today! See you next week.