Monday, November 25, 2013

Wizarding and Stuff

It's interesting to see how an influx of ideas can spark creativity and collaboration in order to reach a greater goal. This past week, our Harry Potter board game really reached a new peak as we grouped together in Kilmer library in order to finally start working on the prototype of our game. Trisha, Payal and I spent some time on the computers creating all of the cards necessary for our game to function. Christina did a great job of designing a prototype game board. She sketched out all of the important  elements we felt were necessary to make the game feel as close to Hogwarts as possible. One of our main focuses while designing this game was to make sure the players feel the connection to the Harry Potter books and movies. While we were creating a blueprint for the game rules and design earlier in the day, we had agreed that each corner of the board would represent each of the different houses present in Harry Potter. The color coordination of Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin added a dynamic to the game that would allow players to feel they are actually at Hogwarts.

Once the prototype of the game was created and ready for play testing, we quickly realized that we had some issues on our hands. For starters, after one round of play testing, we realized that our game needed more purpose. When we played it felt that our game was relying too much on random drawing of cards in order to win and not enough strategy. In class on Wednesday, we consulted Professor Parks and he immediately gave us some insight on how to fix some of the flaws in our game. Professor Parks recommended that each player should place their object cards that others are trying to find in a strategic manner so it doesn't give away where all the cards are to other players every time someone asks for a clue. We also decided to implement a payment system for clues. Depending on the question a player may ask in his or her attempt to gain a clue, the price will vary. Professor Parks also advised us to have the object cards separated facing down to make it easier for players to see how many cards were in certain rooms. This also enhanced the game because players can ask clues about certain cards which would give neighboring players hints, sparking more interaction between all players of the game. I noticed while play testing that object cards and spell cards really added a dimension to the game which brought memories of the movies and books back to me. I think that so far in our objectives, we have succeeded in creating a functional prototype game that is fun, competitive, and a game that stays true to the Harry Potter creed. 

As Thanksgiving quickly approaches, Trisha mentioned that we should try to meet a few times over break in order to complete the final version of our game. Christina and Payal mentioned that we should finalize the board first because we are drawing it by hand as opposed to getting it printed. A project such as this one requires detail and creativity that we felt a computer couldn't express in a realistic manner. Christina brought up that we can have the cards printed at her Aunt's work which would save us broke college students some money. Overall, our group is doing a great job of working together and constantly bringing new ideas to the table in order to complete a much larger task at hand. I really like this groups effort so far. As we approach the finish line, I really hope we can continue the progress and success we've had as a group thus far.

Ram Patel

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