Hi, I’m Aisling Kelly-Brophy. I am passionate about game design and development, front-end development, and virtual reality. Having completed a QQI Level 5 in Game Design & Development in Blackrock Further Education Institute in 2017, I especially enjoy designing and creating games in Unity and C#. Currently, I am learning React, Python, and Blender, as well as developing my own projects to further my Unity and C# skills. As a woman in technology, I am also passionate about diversity and equality efforts, and I hope to see many more women in gaming in future.
AbyssScape is a virtual reality, dark fantasy escape game, in which the player must overcome obstacles to find their way out of a foreboding dungeon. It was developed for the Oculus Quest 2 headset in Unity 2020, coded in C# using Visual Studio Code, and utilised Unity's XR Interaction Toolkit. The menu theme and ending theme were also composed within Magix MusicMaker, a program which enables the user to arrange premade music loops to compose soundtracks for film, games etc. AbyssScape also aimed to examine the principles of immersion in gaming, utilising elements such as colour, lighting, and sound design to create the right atmosphere.
As humans, we have always had a fascination with games, and with immersive experiences. A good game, book, film, or TV show will work hard to immerse its audience, through a combination of design elements such as character, world building, sound, lighting, emotion... Such experiences have only been enhanced by virtual reality technologies in the last few years. In virtual reality, the player is not so much a passive observer of a game, but a "visitor" to the world of the game itself.
I drew on this research to create my own VR game, utilising elements such as colour, lighting, sound design, and level design to create what can be perceived as an immersive gaming experience. First, I researched existing VR puzzle games, examined their features, and surveyed a broad cross-section of gamers about the most important aspects of both VR and non-VR games. Developing on this research, the game was then designed, levels were laid out, and the main activities of the game were described in storyboard form. Then, once a build of the game was complete, it was tested with players both familiar and unfamiliar with VR games. Feedback on the game's design and functionality was received as a result of this testing, with suggested changes noted for future reference.