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Other Projects

Freelance Work:

"Eat Me." sign - Early November 2017

Two entrepreneurs planning to start their own business together approached me, asking for help in creating a visualisation of a sign of their business to present to investors.

I was given initial sketches and details of the wording, colour scheme options and the four different variants of them they wanted to try, getting feedback for each.

After the final one was selected, it was modified on request with two mockup storefronts being designed and added at a later date.

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Building modules - End of November to beginning of December 2017

I found some work on the early stages of a fantasy-themed MMORPG project for a small company.

They wanted modular pieces of ground floor buildings made from scratch and textured in such a way that they would seamlessly blend to the dirt ground.

Because of the texture maps provided (everything for the asset being on one map) and chamfered edges on some pieces, I found it to be a very good exercise in extensive & precise UV mapping.

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Additional Visual Work:

Portfolio Logo/Favicon - Early February 2018

I decided to create a logo for myself as a designer as a way of effectively 'branding' myself, my works and this portfolio by extension.

 

For the sake of outreach and consistency, I put the same design on my e-portfolio, this website's favicon and also printed on business cards I hand out at Game Jams, socials and other game-related events in Bristol. 

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Business Cards - Early February 2018

I wanted to design a business card for myself that included everything I value in communication: directness, succinctness and clarity. 

As such, I decided to make sure I put across everything I needed to on the very finite space in a very clear and structured layout.

 

I also made sure to keep the branding consistent, utilising the logo and its colour scheme on the design.

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Game Design Theory:

Game Concept - "Star Wars: Exile" - poster from January to April 2017,     "Star Wars: Mark Omega" Game Design Document from April '19-August '20

In an effort to hopefully distinguish myself from other designers, and to get a story concept idea that's been going around in my head since 2013 off my chest, I decided to write my own video game: inside and out, start to finish. 

 

I had a major head-start with this through using this story concept in early 2017 as a foundation for the only assignment at University to properly delve into Game Design Theory. We were given a simple objective: come up with an original game concept across any medium - console/PC, board games, trading cards, etc.

 

I chose to do a concept for a 3rd person RPG set in the "Star Wars" universe 5 years after 'Revenge of The Sith' focusing on a Jedi survivor in exile. This was, from the beginning, designed as a darker, mature and gritty story in the same vein as the cancelled title 'Star Wars: 1313", and as a kind of spiritual successor to both the "Knights of The Old Republic" and "Force Unleashed" titles - similar to how 'Assassin's Creed' is considered one to 'Prince of Persia'.

 

I also deliberately took some aspects and details of now-'Legends' material and repurposed them to try and bring them into the new order, like Disney and their canon for the entire previously established universe.

For the brief, whatever we chose, we produced an A1 poster full of details answering three of six questions we were given, each with multiple subsections and all pertaining to differing elements of GDT. This covered areas such as world/mission design, character archetypes, how certain mechanics can feed into story and vice versa, etc.

After submitting the GDT poster in April 2017, I never stopped thinking it would be good and cool if this particular game and story ever got made and saw the light of day somehow, with the odd detail about story or characters presenting itself to me over time.

 

Coincidentally, the reveal and then-impending release of 'Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order' really turned my focus and interest back to this project, kept the ideas coming anew and gave me the feeling I need to properly establish the details of this project as a way of standing by my idea and as an act of "proof of concept".

Click on the image for larger size and better quality.

Click to be able to view properly.

Click to be able to view properly.

Click on the image for larger size and better quality.

As of the eve of the release date of 'Jedi: Fallen Order', the design poster I made establishing the basic first draft of my idea had been published for the world to see for just over seven months, and the very large Game Design Document I've been writing and compiling is finished at just under 317,000 words over 627 pages.

 

The GDD covers the projects' Background, list of Characters from main to minor, Key Game Items, Player Customisation, the list of Settings/Playable Locations, two versions of the game's story (for the sake of accessibility). I also reformatted and included a Reconfiguration of the 2017 Design Poster from University with added information from other questions set on the Assignment Brief, Minigames, a list of the Trailers' scripts, repurposing of 'Legends' material, Changes to the Concept (including how I avoided "Jedi: Fallen Order" clashes), the project's Future and design Sources.

With regards to the development time for this project, I didn't know what to expect as I had never undertaken a project of this nature before, so I used the production window of my then-largest project; the "Helm's Deep" Level Design as a reference. I tried to keep it along the seven-month window and was on track to do so, but it became clear when doing the largest parts of the GDD: the 440-page story and 126 individual game maps, that it would take much longer than ideally anticipated, especially while always working around other obligations with family, other important things, and the ever-changing and increasing responsibilities of an essential role in current days.

This project included many firsts for me all rolled into one endeavour, as I had never: written a story before, done behind-the-scenes mechanics to a narrative concept, taken a narrative and reworked and adapted it for an interactive format like a video game, designed a character from biography to physical design, and written any kind of game before.

As stated and published here previously: with this project I'm not trying to clash with Disney or their IP in any way, I'm just trying to show I have experience in this corner of Games Development and show off a hypothetical, purely non-canon idea as a long-term fan of the franchise.

Game Concept - "The Hunger Games: Battle Royale" - July and August 2021

During the first half of 2021, I felt the writing bug again and decided to put to paper a recurring idea of the time. I'd only written one game previously by now, but this idea was one that was different at its core: instead of a single-player RPG title, this idea was based on an online multiplayer experience.

I looked at well-known deathmatch "last man standing" games, especially the more popular ones in recent history, and wondered how such a thing could be applied to the eponymous media franchise. My brain especially got ticking with how it could fit into the universe's existing melee combat-focussed style of matches and the overall lore present in that world, the latter point covers not just the background details and expositions of such things, but specialty matches in and outside of 'Quarter Quell' Games and District life and societies in the fictional nation.

Lastly I wrote in a very deep comprehensive survival system based on to the title "7 Days to Die" that I feel fits very well into this kind of game - in the gravity/stakes of the matches themselves and also to give the game a very realistic edge, since there are things that are a cause of death beyond conventional weapons - like temperature,  thirst and disease.

I was able to produce a thorough Game Design Document of over 13 sections - akin to Panem's 13 Districts - each focussing on different areas of GDT such as game mechanics, the survival system, player customisations, arena types, player classes based on the world in the source material novels and the game's visual motif & UI to name a few. 

Each section is covered by a custom cover page that I designed myself, visually harkening back to the District posters that were released alongside the films in the series for as much consistency as possible. Lastly the final section includes credits, where I give details of any outside material I used, such as images.

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Game Concept - "Star Wars: Pax Aurora - Spring 2022

A direct sequel to my first GDT project; "Star Wars: Mark Omega", which I penned myself from April 2019-September 2020, and was based on a final year university project from early 2017.

The story follows Near-Human Jedi Malum Cyrax once again, and takes place in 13BBY; 2 years after he and several of his allies, old and new, escaped from The Empire and the Inquisitors on the planet Kessel, settling on "Alvacea", a small moon of the planet Callos they had visited before. Dark machinations persist, however, as The Empire uses apparatus from an ancient Sith High Priestess from the days of The Old Republic from one of the Emperor's Observatories, coupled with a Dark Side Ritual akin to the one seen in Season 6 of the Clone Wars series, to blood-transfuse Force Abilities into Imperial soldiers, creating a new, deadlier and perverse threat to the Galaxy.

After a period of much-needed peace, now 23 years old, Malum finds himself being drawn into the fight against The Empire once again after two members of the Kessel Survivors' community vanish on a mission, and a small army of synthetic Dark Side force-wielders emerges in the wake of their disappearance: THE DARK ACOLYTES. At their head is a new enemy: THE FOURTH BROTHER. An adversary who not only has strong ties to this new top-secret Imperial project, that has roots in the Sith of the Old Republic era, but also to Malum himself - from the time before the Clone Wars even began....

To fight this new battle, Malum makes use of new and stronger Force powers, a brand new lightsaber, new blaster pistol, some tactical grenades, a personal starfighter and some capable & trusty allies ready to stand by his side and jump into the fray with him against this new threat.

Story Proof of Concept:

While I doubt I can type out the entire story of this game before any sequel to "Fallen Order" is commercially released, certainly not to the level of my "Mark Omega" game design document, I can still expand upon each act of the story and detail what they are each focussed on, the smaller narratives contained within arcs over several game levels and any major character developments. Hopefully with this, it clarifies things ahead of time next to the upcoming AAA game and thus helps make a case for originality with the events of this narrative compared to the other - rather than there being any unfortunate but coincidential similarities or other crossovers of ideas and story points. At this point in 2022, there are still no details about the sequel to the first game so that's good - it gives me time to breathe and gather my ideas for the follow-up to my own story.

The game's tutorial is set on the moon Malum and his Kessel-Survivor allies settled on two years ago. He returns from a personal venture concerning important characters from the previous game: The Leegans. The tutorial is focussed on taking the player through Malum's life at this new commune they've settled in - not just with the controls of the game through the tasks he perfoms, combative and non, but also the relationships and dynamics he has with the other members; the Resurgent Hope Crew, Rathtar Clan, Younglings, Valdo Torranss and her mercenaries and the older Jedi Survivors from Kessel. 

Everything is topped off with Malum meditating as he finally completes construction of his own new yellow-coloured, single-bladed lightsaber following the destruction of Magnus Kain's Jedi Temple Guard saberstaff at the hands of the First Brother two years ago, though the crystal is slightly damaged and cracked from the event, causing a slightly sparking and unstable blade. And while still in that meditative state in the present, he is contacted through The Force by someone he never expected: MASTER YODA. The old Jedi Grandmaster swears Malum to secrecy for the sake of the 'bigger picture' he could always see clearly but others could not, and warns him of a sinister plot of the Dark Side brewing as they speak and sets him to face three Jedi trials to make him strong enough to defeat this Imperial scheme: Strength, Insight and Spirit - claiming he already passed the Trial of The Flesh when the Clones attacked, and passed the Trial of Courage across the entire events on Kessel, especially stepping up to lead against the enemy. Malum claims he does not feel he is ready, or worthy, but is told that it's for that very reason, he knows he is. Malum is wished luck and is given reassurance against this new task, but elsewhere, the First Brother - now the Grand Inquisitor - sets his top agent to acquire a certain "asset" for him that will be instrumental in tracking Malum down and find him again.

 

The Story's first act focusses on the disapparance of the Commune's members until that mystery is resolved. Malum and his allies, primarily members of the Resurgent Hope Crew, track down their lost friends in a deep and thorough investigation across The Galaxy. They meet Imperials, criminals and other assorted scum and villainy along their path charted across various new worlds, including a lengthy and very important stop at the planet NORDA-MERIDIAN, the main Hyperspace jumping-off point for the entire 'Western Reaches' area of The Galaxy and currently under Imperial jurisdiction for their expansion efforts. Throughout the first act, they come across the Dark Acolytes on the proverbial battlefield - decked out in specialised red Stormtrooper gear with helmets reminscent of the Imperial Royal Guard, wielding rudimentary telekinetic abilities and lightsaber-proof Force-Pikes. The First Act ends at an Imperial "Pax Aurora" facilty on a new ice and snow planet,  for the last four missions of the act.

The first act is broken up into three story arcs; each one consisting of three levels and the third arc (a three-level 'finale' arc like in the three acts of "Mark Omega") is a continuation of the first - essentially getting back on the initial track with new energy and approaches to solve the very large problem they're facing. The tenth level of the first act is Malum's "Trial of Strength", where his 'Shatterpoint' ability proves invaluable - but not before facing a huge test of a different nature just before: in the ninth level, the last one of the last whole arc, Malum meets and then faces off against the new Inquisitor - The Fourth Brother - for the very first time. After a fierce duel, Malum's foe hits him with a Force power he's never experienced before: FORCE LIGHTNING. The Jedi is incapacitated & defeated in surprise, but he escapes and gets away safely - though not before blowing that place to Hell, halting 'Pax Aurora' and the 'Dark Acolytes' progress. On the ship back to Alvacea, Malum's friend and ally Tye gets a message from an old friend, Liu Cadore, pleading for help against The Empire on their return journey.

 

The second act sees Malum going with Tye to his homeworld of Jabiim, where former comrades-in-arms of his are embroiled in a bitter struggle against the Imperial occupation there, which is all revolving around an Imperial R&D facility housing a project that is related to the much larger Imperial scheme in the game's title. There, Anti-Jedi sentiment and prejudice is apparent, as well as some of the militia aiming it at Tye himself for leaving the fight there for other pursuits out in the Galaxy. They fight the ISB-led forces of The Empire in the earth and the mud in a harsh back-and-forth, suffering some setbacks but ultimately getting to a point Malum can infiltrate the Imperial compound and lower its strong defenses from within.

The second act is broken up into arcs again, this time revolving around different phases of the local rebel militia's attack plan. There are five levels that deal with the fight to the Imperial R&D facility grounds, then the sixth is Malum's "Trial of Insight" - where he has to infiltrate the facility alone, get to the important areas regarding power and defenses and then hold off some returning troopers by himself - he does all of this while dealing with things either he cannot physically see, or he willfully makes himself invisible to, one way or the other. Following that, he discovers the relevant Imperial project here that ties into the much larger "Pax Aurora" scheme: SHADOW TROOPERS. There's a level afterwards to gather themselves and then the three-level finale arc to wipe out the Imperial data, facility at large and fend off all remaining Imperial forces in the area in a very tense last stand.

 

Finally, the game's third act centres on Malum taking everything about 'Pax Aurora' he's learned and experienced so far and using it to take on the Imperial project head-on to shut it down once and for all, facing trials and clashes to overcome along the way and a strong climax as he faces off against this new Inquisitor from long ago in his past. It picks up a little while after they return to Alvacea from Jabiim, once everyone's fully recuperated. The act begins with Malum's "Trial of Spirit" in a particularly Force-Sensitive place close to their commune, and after a very physically and emotionally intense duel with an adversary that has him face his inner darkness in a big way: "THE PHANTASM", Master Yoda appears again and Malum is knighted by him, and is given an extra lightsaber crystal, allowing him to make a new double-ended hilt, like the one he carried and made us of in "Mark Omega", but with both ends much more stable now, reflecting his journey and his new place in it.

Following that, there's a single level, where the Dark Acolytes return after licking their wounds from the finale of Pax Aurora's first act, this time with stronger abilities, wearing grey improved gear of the Imperial Shadow Guard and wielding deadlier weapons with collapsible spear-like lightsaber pikes with a short red blade. Also at this time, Malum encounters The Fourth Brother again and discovers his identity in another duel - this one ending in a gruelling tie - and the Inquisitor is someone Malum himself knows (a certain Force-User introduced in 2008 as a secret apprentice) - but it's a trick and he's forced to flee, though not before taking a new gadget with him from the fight against what was only a clever imposter. A four-level arc with Ikola Kontu - one of the Kessel survivors only a few years younger than Malum - then happens, which explores their dynamic and the teacher-like mentorly side in Malum that Ikola has always been able to bring out, which surprised him. After that arc, and thoughts about taking him on as an apprentice in future, there's another level that picks up the thread from the second, before the finale. On a misty and mountainous world, the three-level finale arc of the act and the entire game takes place - involving the new captive Force-Wielder who unwillingly enabled the Dark Acolytes to return in this act (she recognises Malum and he does too through The Force, both to his surprise). Also involved is the Old Republic Sith gear, Malum makes an act of very risky desperation to give him the edge against this new Inquisitor, facing an old Dark Side entity as he does so, the Imperial "Pax Aurora" facility there is also destroyed and there's a final confrontation with the Fourth Brother, now Malum knows who he is, striking some big emotional and personal chords on both sides. 

 

As with 'Mark Omega', I've planned out two potential endings for the game, each relating to the player's Force Alignment which is contingent on their actions throughout the story.

 

The "Light Side Ending" sees Malum make it back to the commune on Alvacea alive and well, but thoroughly wrung out and exhausted inside and out. He's victorious and the Empire's "Pax Aurora" project is dead in the water - he and the commune survive to fight another day and live in peace out of The Empire's reach. Finally, the Grand Inquisitor's "asset" to find Malum is revealed - it's Daxxon Karpa from Fondor: alive, angry and with a hell of an axe to grind with the young Jedi after the events of "Mark Omega"'s first act.

Conversely, the "Dark Side Ending", the desperate decision Malum makes to try and defeat his foe backfires, and takes HIM down instead. From that, he is defeated and the commune's location is found in his starfighter - the last thing seen is a fleet of Star Destroyers arriving there and catching everyone by surprise.

Real-World Proof of Concept:

As stated above, I wish to avoid clashes and unfortunate coincidences with character and story, so not only am I proving 'Pax Aurora's originality by laying out the gist of every act before having everything written up in "Mark Omega"'s level of depth and detail, I'm showcasing that it's been available to read before the release date of "Fallen Order"'s sequel.

As of early 2023, "Jedi Survivor" is close to releasing, so having this proof of concept from any point before that month of release feels like it's providing a solid case for my ideas and should absolve me in the event of any less-than-ideal twists of fate. In it you can see the start and end of my portfolio's relevant page and section, and the details unchanged therein.

Click on the image for larger size and better quality.

Game Concept - "Assassin's Creed: Biowar" - Summer 2022

Details coming soon.

Game Concept - "Star Wars: Cluster-Prism" - Autumn 2022

Details coming soon.

Game Concept - "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" - Winter 2022

Details coming soon.

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