Boo Who Prototype

Here’s a little game prototype I made over the weekend with my pal Keeley.

You’re a little ghost possessing other characters in order to make it through each level. It was pretty fun to work on so far. Maybe we’ll spend some more time on it and build it into a more complete game.

Ludum Dare 46

I participated in Ludum Dare 46 last weekend by making a game called CP-ARTY (CPR-party … get it). The theme was “keep it alive” so I made a CPR rhythm game where you’re doing chest compressions, mouth-to-mouth, and shooing off lookie-loos to the beat of a haphazardly thrown together track I created with SoundGrid.

You can play CP-ARTY online either on GitHub or Itch.io. Here’s a video of the game in action:

This is the first game jam where I used Unity and the game’s 3D-based which went much better than I was expecting and was a lot of fun animating the low poly characters in Blender. All of the feedback so far has been extremely positive so I may spent more time fleshing this out into a longer, more polished game. 🙂

AR Prototype

Since I’m housebound due to the COVID-19 outbreak I’ve been passing the time by experimenting with AR and photogrammetry. Here’s an AR prototype I did with marker tracking within the browser:

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For that particular one I’m using A-Frame to handle the tracking of custom markers within the browser. The workflow for exporting a 3D object from Blender to a glTF, and then loading it into the Three.js scene is remarkably easy.

In the future I’d like to see how well one of my photogrammetry captured objects renders and see how well animated objects and interactivity works. I suspect as long as you’re mindful of most Three.js rendering limitations you’d be fine but who knows with the addition of the whole AR layer within the browser.

More Photogrammetry Tests

3D Heads generated by FaceBuilder

I’ve been experimenting with more photogrammetry tools and techniques. This time recreating 3D human heads using a Blender add-on called FaceBuilder which is developed by KeenTools. Using FaceBuilder is pretty straightforward:

  1. you take 7 photos of the head you’d like to recreate at various angles,
  2. import those photos into Blender using FaceBuilder,
  3. align the FaceBuilder mesh to the 7 photos using their pinning system,
  4. bake the photos into a texture used by the generated head mesh, and
  5. clean up the baked texture by doing a bit of clone tool work over anything that may look off.

I’ve found that taking photos on a bright, overcast day gets the best results as well as trying to capture the 7 key photos as quickly as possible (before your subject shifts around too much) and well as detail shots around the head to be used to texture paint in anything that may look off when the textures are baked.

This guide that the KeenTools folks wrote helps to breakdown the process and a high level of what their add-on is actually doing.

FaceBuilder Pins

Texture generated by FaceBuilder

Photogrammetry Tests

Photoscan Skull

I’ve been doing some photogrammetry tests using my iPhone 11’s camera, Agisoft Metashape, and a Proko Anatomical Skull. The goal is to accurately convert a physical 3D object into something that can be used within a game. I think if I focus on taking less blurry photos (like the back of the skull were) the results will be spot on next time. It’s interesting how you can see the lack of details translating into the glitchiness of the generated mesh. There’s a bubbling particle-like explosion wherever the details drop below a certain threshold.

Anywho, after I get a workflow to reliably capture a 3D object the next step would be to retopologize and possibly rig the object in Blender. I’m anxious to be moving onto that soon. 🙂

Photogrammetry WireframePhotogrammetry Setup

Localizing Toy Gun Office Simulator

Localizing Toy Gun Office Simulator

Aside from myself, I’m the only person within my family and group of friends that owns a VR Headset. This is more than a little concerning when I plan on releasing a VR Game that I want people to actually play. To get around this issue I’ve been localizing Toy Gun Office Simulator in order to make it playable by as many folks as possible.

For its initial launch on Steam it should be translated into Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, and Ukrainian. I’m using I2 Localization in Unity which at least makes the coding part of this relatively painless. Although it has been interesting working through the design challenges involved in this effort and I’m hoping that it makes a difference in how accessible the game is.

Shootout Level

Shootout Level

I’ve finished the fourth level Toy Gun Office Simulator will be launching with! In this one you try to survive waves of enemies trying to shoot you with their own toy guns. I tried to make this feel as close to how a toy gun fight would in an actual office with your co-workers and am really happy with how it turned out. This level’s definitely my favorite so far and the handful of folks I’ve had test it really enjoyed it too. 🙂

Starting the Steam Submission Process!

I’m excited to report that my Steamworks Developer account has been approved and I’m currently going through the process of submitting the shooter game, which is now titled Toy Gun Office Simulator, to Steam! Here’s a taste of the game’s description:

Toy Gun Office Simulator is an action VR shooter where you test your mettle in four unique, atmospheric levels. Improve your sharpshooter abilities and survive as many waves of targets as your can!

I’d like to have Toy Gun Office Simulator released by the end of August — which nearly meets the “have one game self-published within a year” goal I had about a year ago when I setup Wanana, LLC.