Play the Game: #MeToo
“A short game (approx 8-10 minutes to play entire game), made in Unity for PC, whose primary focus is telling a story, or exploring a narrative space. Must allow the player to explore a 2D/3D space.”
About the game:
Engine used: Unity + Fungus
Team Size: 1
Time to complete: 2 months
This is a story about child abuse, rape and the general stigma that resolves around the fact that men cannot be raped or abused, especially by women. The game was inspired by the #MeToo movement and the fact that men to this day cannot openly say they have been raped. Even if they say they have, people either don’t believe them or just don’t care. Rape is a serious issue that can affect anyone.
The game takes place in the early 1900s. The main character is a 15-year-old boy and his stepmother. They’ve been living together for many years, but in the past year or so, she’s become extremely abusive of him, scarring him both physically and mentally. This is also a story about rape, mental issues and suicide.
My contribution towards the game:
I worked on the level design, the story, characters and picked all of the music. My biggest contribution to this game is the actual story behind it. It took me an extremely long time to do proper research into rape and child abuse. I wanted to make sure everything in the game was correct and made sense and it just worked. Small parts of the codes were also mine. As the developer, my other job was QA testing as well.
The level design was mostly using the prefabs available from the asset pack, the rest was decorating and ensuring everything made sense, was in the correct location and was visible enough for it to be an item of interest, but at the same time hidden or blended enough that it wasn’t standing out or out of place.
The idea behind the game and the design was that you start in you room, and once you get to your memory, you are open to explore the next room, which was the little dining room. After that memory you can only go downstairs as the other doors are still closed. After you find the 3rd memory, you hear a sound from upstairs and that is where you will find a new door open and your final memory. The game was designed to be more of an exploration type of game, however due to feedback, the items of interest had to be made more visible so that players spent less time clicking and more time engaged with the story.
During the QA testing of the game, the participants mentioned they had trouble finding the objects. To fix this, I placed little particle effects near an object of interest, to see if this will help. During the next playtest, the players still struggled finding the objects, which is why now each object of interest shines a little in order to help the players find them. The other issue players had was the fact the doors were open, which lead people to believe they can walk through them, when in fact they couldn’t. To fix this, I replaced the open doors with closed ones, and added triggers, so when the player finds a memory, they will automatically open.
I wanted the game to tell a story. I wanted the game to get people talking, asking questions and just helping one another. I hope for a world where no child is abused, no one is raped and no one suffers. Unfortunately, this is very impossible. What I want instead is for those that notice or think someone that is being abused or has been, to try and help them out. It doesn’t take a lot to do so, and you may be saving a life.
This game was rather difficult to create, for various reasons. I started with a different idea, wasn’t sure how I was going to implement it, then I changed it to this. The other challenge was the research and having everything be as correct as possible. Overall, I am very satisfied with how the game turned out to be.
If I could change something, it will most definitely be to add low-poly portraits to the game. Originally I had two portraits added, but they didn’t fit the style and I wasn’t happy with them. Looking at the portraits I made for The Helpline, this is what I had in mind for this game too. Faces that are actually coming to life, with emotions and just helping support the story and give it a visual improvement.
The other thing I want improved is the story itself. There is so much more I can tell and show, but due to the brief I had to limit the game to only 4 memories. I can have different items showing different memories, potentially showing who the Father is, and why he’s been so ignorant of everything.