Last night at Home

Walkthrough:

Play Video

Narrative Designer & Programmer

Global Game Jam 2019

Horror Puzzle Game

More than 11k views on itch.io !

Pitch

You play as a young woman spending the night alone in her apartment. Suddenly, something or someone tries to break into her home by making holes in the walls, which she must patch until the police shows up…

Development

This game was originally made for the Global Game Jam on 2 day (25 to 27 January 2019), the theme was What home means to you’.
We decided to work on it for a month after the jam because we enjoyed making a horror game & we wanted to polish the game before releasing it.
We released the first version of the project on Itch.io the 24 of February 2019.
& we didn’t expect so much success.

Engine: Unity

Duration: 2 days jam + 1 month polishing

Number of people: 4 Game Designer / 4 Game Artist

My task:

  • Team management for the jam

  • Storyline writing

  • Game & Narrative Design

  • Menu & UI programming

The Team

Theo Vart
(Game Designer & Main Programmer)

Alexandre Brodu
(Narrative Designer & Programmer)

Alexandre Leboube
(Game Designer & Sound Designer)

Theo Bacoux
(Level Designer)

Gaethan Bercet
(3D Artist & voice)

Laura Molina
(3D Artist)

Yoann Lardy
(3D Artist)

Clemence Bertoye
(3D Artist & voice)

My Work

Management & Communication

During the jam I served as a project manager. First, I monitored the brainstorming, made sure that everyone could talk or propose their ideas. We were 8 people, so it was hard to agree on something, but we all choose the Horror theme. During the project I was the link between all the member of the team thanks to a git versioning system set up by Theo Vart the other programmer on the team.

After the release of the game I promoted the game on social medias. I looked at the video sent to us and I replied to some feedback.

We release 2 updates, one about inputs & a trailer and another about the localization. I had to write Development logs to communicate these updates.

 

Narrative Design

When we started the project, I started to write my first ideas down. I wanted the game to focus on the fear of being attacked in a place we feel safe: our home.

Due to the limitation of time & means we decided to stay unclear on what’s attacking you. It also reinforces the power of suggestion of the player when they don’t know clearly what’s coming for them.

However, after the jam we added the Dark Man to add a more present threat to the game.

I designed and programmed a narrative intro to place the context before the game. For this intro we decided to do the voices of the characters. I oversaw the dubbing, we used the voice of our game artist Clemence Bertoye (the heroine) & Gaethan Bercet (The policeman).

I decided to make a fake dialogue choice in the Intro to keep the player engaged in the conversation between the two characters and because we didn’t have the time to make sure the choices would have affected the gameplay.

When designing the game, we had to set up victory and defeat screen. But in the end when you die instead of just a restart screen there is a little bit of story shown to the player. It happens because we wanted that the death of the heroine was a part of the story (that’s a horror game after all).

After the jam we also added a tutorial for the game, so I had to include it in the Intro between the parts where she explains her story and the phone call to the police.

During the next month of development, the storyline & narrative design didn’t change much. It was mostly polishing, bug correction & minor gameplay modification.

Programming

We were 2 programmers on the game:

  • Theo Vart was in charge of the character controller & the main gameplay & some small features & oversaw the versionning with Git.
  • I was in charge of all the intro & the end, the menu & other small features.

We wanted to make a game driven by its narration, so I wanted to perfect the intro to create a clear context for the game. That’s why I decided to implement as soon as possible sound design & dubbing. I also programmed the letter that appears one by one for that purpose.

I did the menu & other small features like the light that turns off or the first iterations of the Dark Man.

We also helped each other on a lot of things.

Success & Feedbacks

We reached 6417 view & 2332 downloads the first 3 weeks. We stayed on top of the Itch.io popular page for at least a week.

At the end of 2019 we’re at 11k view & more than 4000 downloads.

We received a lot of feedbacks from the players via YouTube video & comments.

This success can be explained because horror games are popular among new youtubers.

In March after the release Samet Ahmet Şahin contacted us to make a Turkish localization for the game. We did work for a week to implement a localization system.