Shade, a horror-based Virtual Reality experience in the vein of Slender, is an experiment into the development of Virtual Reality applications, and an investigation into the development cycle and business opportunities of an indie game.
The goal was never to make money (as is usually the case with indie game development).
Far from it.
The goal, instead, was to learn how game development works as a business practice and to learn game and Virtual Reality development in the Unity environment.
We utilised a well known and well documented method for generating random environments – Prim’s Algorithm.
To control our AI, we implemented a basic pathfinding Algorithm known as A* Pathfinding.
Gameplay Trailer – an experiment into video game marketing
What did we learn from all this?
At the end of it all, Shade was great fun and a great success (if not monetarily, at least in terms of knowledge value).
We basically re-learned Unity from the ground up, implementing algorithms (with a bit of help) that I would have considered far outside of my ability.
There was also a huge amount to learn about atmosphere design, and how different people react to horror elements. Some people were absolutely terrified by the experience, and others just got annoyed that they weren’t able to finish the maze, which they saw as the real challenge.
But finally, there was the huge amount of insight into the business side of game development. From project proposals, to publisher reviews, to business, design, and marketing documents.