TEAM SIZE: 5 PLATFORM: ANDROID TABLET ENGINE: UNITY DEV TIME: THREE MONTHS
Colorless is an isometric puzzle game built around teleportation.
During this project, I was the Asst. Game Designer and a Level Designer. As the Asst. Game Designer, I facilitated design discussions and maintained the game design document. As a Level Designer, I made four levels and designed the tutorial.
After facilitating scrum each morning, I typically transitioned in level design and creation. Along with the design side, I stayed aware of brewing conflicts so I could address them before they worsened.
ROLE: Asst. Game designer, level designer
- Facilitated discussions about design
- Wrote and designed tutorial
- Designed and built four levels in Unity
- Developed and iterated on level design pipeline
- Resolved personnel conflicts
Risk Assessment and Management
ASSESSMENT: UNCLEAR ROLES CAUSING PERSONNEL CONFLICT
MANAGEMENT: CLARIFY ROLES
METHOD: ONE-ON-ONES, TURN TO RACI
Midway through development, tension surfaced when multiple individuals assumed they were the decision-maker on certain topics. To mitigate this, I talked to each of the affected parties privately, then talked to the team about RACI. Going forward, we had a more productive decision-making process.
ASSESSMENT: VARIED AESTHETIC QUALITY IN ALL LEVELS
MANAGEMENT: ESTABLISH ART EXPECTATIONS
METHOD: UPDATE ART STYLE GUIDE, ADJUST PIPELINE
Even after we polished our levels, some did not reach the desired aesthetic quality bar. To make sure they were the same quality, I consulted the team and added an artist sign-off to our level pipeline. We also updated our art style guide with paintovers that resembled our intended levels. After establishing these changes, our least beautiful levels improved significantly.
ASSESSMENT: NEW TEAM MEMBER NEEDS TO BE INTEGRATED
MANAGEMENT: ONBOARD, MAKE TEAM MEMBER FEEL VALUED
METHOD: UPDATE DOCUMENTATION, CONSULT NEW MEMBER FOR FEEDBACK
When a new team member joined our team, I wanted to make sure she was as comfortable as possible while getting up to speed quickly. To achieve this goal, I updated all of our documentation before she joined and planned a day of onboarding. Once she had her legs under her, I began asking her for feedback on my level design work. Later, she told the team that she believed we had the most effective onboarding process of any of the TGP 1 teams.
ASSESSMENT: POOR STAKEHOLDER COMMUNICATION
MANAGEMENT: DOCUMENT STAKEHOLDER FEEDBACK
METHOD: WEEKLY MEETINGS, DESIGNATED NOTE TAKERS
Early on, we did not communicate well with our stakeholders. I talked with the team, and we agreed to elect someone to take notes whenever she was in the room as well as send me to weekly meetings with her. These changes noticeably improved our relationship with her, as we were more active on implementing her feedback.