Dear PlayStation community and soon to be game designers, I’m excited to officially unveil a brand new project in which YOU will be designing a game that will be released on PlayStation Network later this year.
We are working with a talented Swedish developer called The Bearded Ladies Consulting, who you may know as the creators of Landit Bandit, which is available from PlayStation Store now. They are currently working on an action platformer that will be released on the minis category of the Store and they want your help to design every aspect of it, from the design of the lead character to the storyline and the name.
Here’s how it will work:
- Every Friday from now, for eight weeks, we will post a new challenge to the community on the official PlayStation forums.
- The following Friday, the top 5-10 submissions will be presented in an open vote on The Bearded Ladies facebook page, which will last until Sunday. The winning submission will be included in the game and the creator will be credited in the game credits.
Now that you know how it all works and how to get involved, allow me to hand over to The Bearded Ladies for them to introduce the first challenge and offer a few insider tips. You can start adding your ideas right now on the official PlayStation forums by clicking one of the following links, depending on your language: English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian, Polish, Scandinavian languages.
Week 1: The people need a HERO!
The first thing our game needs is a protagonist and story. This “hero” could be anything that fits a platformer (which historically is… anything!). A hero also needs some extraordinary circumstances in order to show of his or her heroics. So we would also like you to include a quest/setting that our protagonist will have to navigate. Try to include the following:
- A graphical representation of the hero (don’t worry, it’s not an art contest, we will make him look great in the end).
- An interesting setting/quest that will create good gameplay opportunities.
- Special abilities/characteristics of the character that could further enhance the gameplay.
From our side you will be judged not on your art ability, but on the overall concept. Remember however that in the end it is your job to sell it to the rest of the community, and some nice colours always help.
The winner of this challenge will be credited as gamedesigner (“original concept by”).
The focus of this project however is not the competition but the collaborative effort, so ANY ideas that catch our interest might end up in the game and the community
member(s) that generated them will be credited.
Since we will get a lot of contributions there is one rule:
THE CONCEPT MUST BE PRESENTED IN A JPG ATTACHMENT WITH A MAX RESOLUTION OF 520×1024. This constraint comes from the fact that we need to show off the contributions on facebook which has a maximum content width of 520 pixels. Any additional information about your concept can be added to the forum post (which we will link to as well) but remember that the image will be your “pitch” on facebook.
Tips from The Bearded Ladies
David Skarin – Programming
It’s all about thinking outside the box, so making your main character something that is already outside the norm can make it easier for you to come up with great gameplay elements. I love playing around with new ideas, so don’t be afraid of going “out there.”
Kalle Söderberg – Character animation
Giving the characters features that make for contrast between limbs and body is great for a 2D platformer where there is limited resolution. Think of Mario’s plumber outfit: it makes his arms really stand out in the animations.
Example: An English alien in New York
Here follows an example of how a contribution could look. This is by no means the only way to do it; as stated earlier, the only rule will be that it has to come in the form of a JPG image with a maximum resolution of 520×1024. Also note that there is no need to make very child friendly concepts (as our example) but refrain from building your concept on graphic violence since the end product will have to fit the PEGI-12 rating.
We really hope you enjoy this collaborative project and everyone involved is itching to see what ideas to come up with and how they shape the game each week. The Bearded Ladies will be keeping you posted with a developer diary here on PlayStation.Blog, so let’s all get to know each other and get started on what will hopefully be a brilliant final game.