"Stan Stun and the Royal tomb"
or how we created a multiplayer game in 48 hours…

"Stan Stun and the Royal tomb" is the latest game developed by Burnt Dragon team, on Gi-Cluster GameJam that took place on 12-13-14 of December 2014.
GameJam's theme was "Amphipolis".

You can find the whole unity project (assets + source code) here.

Stan Stun GameJam presentation

Every Jam is an opportunity for our team to try something new. Something that has not done any previous time. This time we wanted to try Unity's multiplayer mechanism.
Moreover our Druid (Zafiris Panagiotidis), wanted to try out some dungeon generator algorithms. Yes, he is one of those DnD maniacs. :)

When we heard out the theme, we had the following thoughts:
 1. First, we focused on the meaning of the word "Amphipolis" which is a combination of the words “Amphi” and “Polis”. "Amphi" means from the one and the other place or in some cases it means "all-around". "Polis" means town or city.
 2. Also, we thought about the Amphipolis Tomb that has been discovered lately, and the fact that his/her owner is still unknown. In addition, our attention was caught by a photo of a majestic mosaic that was found inside the tomb and one part of it was destroyed.
 3. Finally, we had in mind the idea that opening a tomb that was not meant to be opened, shows a lack of respect to the world of the dead.

With those 3 pillars in mind we came up with the following game play. Our "Polis" (town-city) would be a cube, divided in two areas, red and blue. Players, that can be up to three for each team, can go around the cube and collect pieces of a broken mosaic. Each player can carry up to 6 pieces at a time. When a player is full, he has to return to his base and deposit his pieces in order to be able to collect more pieces. Pieces collected within your area will give you one point, while pieces collected within opponents area will give you three. However, there is a twist! If an opponent appears in your area you can stun him/her for 3 seconds (not being able to move) while at the same time you take all his/her points from pieces currently collected.

The winner team is the one with the most collected pieces in a three minute game.

Concept Art - Character creation

Art Approach:

The aesthetic experience of the game was influenced by the theme of “Amphipolis” and more specific, by patterns and colours related to artifacts that were found by archeologists inside the ancient tomb. We choose a palette of dark colours and that is because we wanted to create the feeling that the player is inside the ruins of Amphipolis.

Patterns that were found on the walls of the real tomb of Amphipolis were used as references and inspiration for the textures of the game in order to create a visual connection to the theme. For example, each side of the cube has a coloured Greek pattern to mark each team’s territory.

The main 3d features of the game were the stone walls and the ruins of marble columns. All the models had textures from either real photos of materials or hand-drawn pieces that were scanned and processed digitally to match the desired visual experience.

Concept Art - Level patterns and environment features

Music Approach:

The first music concept was to have something mysterious, foggy and maybe spooky. Soon while playing the early prototype and considering the multiplayer - competitive aspect we realized we needed something more upbeat, fun and not too complicated. A few clear instruments (drums, bass synth, a backing electric guitar, one lead synth and one baking synth), each with a specific role, giving a nice groove and not making the player sick of playing.

You can listen to "Stan Stun and the Royal Tomb - Music Theme" here.

Concept Art - World perspective

Technical Approach:

Our first problem was the creation of the world. One player has to create a game room in order for others to join it.
The first player is the initiator of the temple generator. A cube with 6 sides that every single one of them is generated using an algorithm, based on Conway's game of life.

Multiplayer was introduced using Unity's default mechanism.
We hardcoded the sides of cube giving 1-2-3 to the red team and sides 4-5-6 to the blue one.
First player joins red team, second one joins blue team, third one red team again and so on.
Red players where spawned on side 1, while blue ones on side 5. Every side had its respective base in order for players to deposit their collectibles.
Stun mechanism was a passive one. Meaning that every player could stun an enemy while being in his/her own territory. A flame effect was used, for making players understand if they have stun capability or not.

We tried as much as possible for our code to be event based.
Diving into our code you will find:
 1. EventManager: Our game's events
 2. NetworkManager: Controller of network events
 3. UiManager: Controller of our UI
 4. SoundManager: Controller of our sound events
 5. MusicManager: Controller of music for our game

Concept Art - Grand mosaic


Every time a new player is connected to the respective game room the first player is sending him the structure of the temple.
We used a Unity's RPC method sending a string with structure details. Although we hit Unity's size limit for RPC calls we managed to zip the details of the request, overcoming this obstacle successfully.

The Burnt Dragon team