Game Journal – GeoGuessr

Designer: Anton Wallen

Platform: Web Browser

Date Played: May 6, 2014

Game Location: http://www.geoguessr.com/

 

Explanation

The game is a simple point and click game. The player is provided with an image of some random place in the World. They may look around and even follow the road forward or backward. Using just the image available the player must attempt to figure out where the image was taken in the World. Then the player clicks on a map in the upper right corner of the screen to make a guess. Scores are provided based on how close the guess was to the actual location. This is repeated 4 more times for a total of 5 rounds. Players may create challenges and issue them to friends for an added level of fun. They may also race against the clock to see just how fast they really are.

 

Screenshot

GeoGuessr Screenshot

This image shows the play UI for the game. The two arrows near the bottom center are your navigation arrows. They allow the player to travel up and down the road (to a certain extent). Zooming and looking can be performed with the tool in the upper left corner or by using the common mouse functions like click, drag, and scroll. The map in the upper right corner is for making a guess at the location of the image. It too can be zoomed and panned. Beneath the map is the points earned last round, total points, and the round identifier. There is also a reset button that will snap you back to where you were in the image when you first saw it. Across the top of the screen are the Help, Feedback, Share, and Set Time Limit/Create Challenge buttons. The white oval in the center of the image is the mouse indicator, it changes based on the terrain and action you may perform. For example, when it is an oval clicking will cause the image to “jump” to that position, but you are still restricted to the road for the point of view.

 

Strategy

This game focuses on finding clues about your location. This can be done in many ways:

  • Identifying foliage
    • Knowledgeable players may use the plant life in the image to determine the location or the region in which the image was taken.
  • Determine Driving Direction
    • Looking almost straight down a player will see the blurred out vehicle that takes the pictures. While the vehicle is not visible, the blur is, and players can determine what the front of the vehicle is to determine driving direction. Looking for the side view mirrors helps a lot (this is not always possible).
    • After determining driving direction players can determine which side of the road the vehicle is traveling on, narrowing the possibilities somewhat.
  • Find a vehicle
    • Finding a vehicle can be very helpful. Players can look at the shape of the license plate to determine if they are in Europe or not (European plates are long rectangles mostly).
  • Find a road sign
  • Mile Markers
    • Sometimes they will have the mile and highway identifier on them (unless blurred out).
  • Speed Signs
    • They may identify the highway, but at the very least they will show MPH or KPH which can narrow the results.
  • Street Sign
    • Finding the name of a street can be helpful; it may even provide a language key to the puzzle.
  • Distance Signs
    • This is the ultimate find. They may literally tell you the city, the highway, or nearby towns relative to the image position.
  • Get Familiar with Google Street View
    • Will Oremus suggests getting familiar with Google’s Street View Map. It shows where street view has been, narrowing your search significantly. It is good to know that almost all of Asia is “unviewed” as well as half of South America and most of Africa (2013).

 

 

Dynamics

It is difficult if not impossible to receive the maximum score of 32395 because the location selection is VERY sensitive. A player must be within 9 meters of the image location to receive a perfect score per turn (6,479 pts/round).

The unlimited amount of traveling a player is allowed paired with the lack of a time limit in standard play lends itself to cheating via Google searching.

It seems to be impossible to score 0 points, meaning that no matter where the location is a player will receive some sort of score even if they guess in Antarctica repeatedly.

 

Similar Games

GeoGuessr (Android, clone made by Felipe Caldas), Where Am I?

Design Ideas

This game made me think of a sort of first person survival game where the player is dropped off in a random location and must navigate home or to some preset location. Another idea would be to play the game in reverse. Give the player a location. Then provide a selection of images. The player must try to choose the correct image relating to the location provided. This could be a good casual game on a mobile platform, players could even take pictures themselves and upload them to increase the amount of “challenges” the player has.

 

Resources

Oremus, W. (2013). How to Beat GeoGuessr, the Insanely Addictive Google Maps Guessing Game. Retrieved from http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/future_tense/2013/05/google_maps_guessing_game_geoguessr_tips_and_cheats_to_beat_the_game.html

Game Journal – StarCraft 2

Designer/Developer: Blizzard Entertainment

Platform: PC

Date: May 29, 2014 (Diary published on June 8, 2015)

 

Explanation

StarCraft II is a real-time strategy game in which players compete against each other for control over resources and attempt to eliminate the enemy player’s forces. In the game players must create and manage armies by gathering minerals and building supply depots. A player’s army maxes out at 200 supply and each unit takes a different amount of supply to place on the battlefield. In addition each unit has a build time that must be completed, with enough supply available, before the unit will be available for use. Players start the game with workers that simply gather resources and construct buildings. Once a specific type of building is completed players can begin developing their military force. For example: If a player builds a barracks then after it is complete they will have the ability to train marines from the barracks. This applies to every unit in the game. Each unit has a corresponding building that must be completed before they can be built. Players can expand their force by gathering additional resources from nearby nodes but the nodes on each map are limited. Players face the difficult decision of expanding and increasing their forces or attacking in hopes of winning. The tradeoff comes when you realize that the longer you wait the stronger the enemy is becoming as well. Players must also make game changing decisions in regards as to which units to create. Each unit in the game has a counter unit and if a player does not see it coming they will be out of the match before it has even begun. Additionally certain units have special abilities that the player must manage, making the overall gameplay very emergent and unpredictable. The outcome of a game can be made by a single decision or by a simple error at any point in the battle.

 

Screenshot

SC Screenshot

StarCraft II has a fairly simplistic interface for a game that is so complex. The majority of the screen is the play area. In the upper right corner of the screen you can see the mineral count (blue crystals) followed by the gas count (green barrel) and finally the supply (pylon). In the extreme top right corner is the social panel where players can check on friend status and communicate with others outside of the game. In the bottom right corner we see the status panel. The panel shows the options available to the player in regard to the currently selected group, unit, or building. Above and to the right of the action panel going from right to left is the menu button, used for changing settings, the friend list, and the help button. Directly to the left of the action panel is a character image that represents the currently selected unit or building. The large panel in the bottom center of the screen is the selection panel. This panel shows all units, buildings, or groups that are currently being directly controlled by the player. It also displays the unit’s health and status information. Notice the three small boxes attached to the top left corner of the selection panel. These are groups created by the user that can be toggled through for quick access. In the bottom left corner is the mini-map of the current stage. Green units on the mini-map are friendly units while red ones are enemy units. Around the map starting in the top left and moving clockwise are the quick action keys, the play clock, ping (concentric circles), terrain (mountain button), and diplomacy button (handshake symbol). These allow the player to alter the mini-map for things like color-blindness and friendly/unfriendly unit coloring.

 

Strategy

There are far too many strategies to name them all and they are constantly evolving because of the emergent quality of the game. Therefore I will mention the most commonly known and simplest strategies.

  • Rushing
    • Rushing involves the player building a small amount of units in a very short amount of time. The player then attacks their opponent in hopes of getting an early kill. This is a huge tradeoff because if the enemy player defends the attack they will have a better economy usually resulting in a loss for the rusher.
  • Turtling
    • This is the opposite of rushing. A turtling opponent barricades themselves into their own base. If the enemy can’t successfully break the opponent’s barricade they will lose units to their defenses eventually leading to a loss for the attacking player. This too can be a tradeoff strategy. If an opponent barricades themselves in too early they run the risk of letting the opponent expand throughout the map, gaining resources that will eventually allow them to win.
  • Harassing
    • This strategy involves using small amounts of units to make tactical strikes at the enemy’s infrastructure. An example would be to use flying units to kill off all of the enemy’s workers resulting in a stale economy and eventual loss for the player. This type of strategy requires a lot of focus on the harasser’s part and can leave them blind to a counterattack.

 

Dynamics

  • Because each map has a limited amount of resources players are forced to fight at some point in the game, it is inevitable.
  • Because the strategies in the game are only limited by the imagination of your opponent, gameplay is constantly evolving and counter strategies are constantly being created to defeat the current “meta-play”.

Additional Notes

I used to play this game competitively; I probably should pick it up again. I forgot how much fun and how challenging it can be.

 

Similar Games

Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne

Clash of Clans

Evolution RTS

League of Legends

Chess

 

Design Ideas

This game spawns many different game ideas. Taking the emergent aspect of the gameplay and applying it to other genres would be a boon to whoever can develop something like that. For example, I would love to see an espionage game where players go head to head trying to steal information from each other. The players could take turns in a best of 3 type of situation. I don’t know if a top-down RTS style game or a full 3D game would be better for this, but it would definitely be interesting to see.

Game Journal – Realm of the Mad God

Designer/Developer: SpryFox

Platform: Flash Based / Windows & Mac (Steam)

Date: May 29, 2014

Game Location: http://www.kongregate.com/games/wild_shadow/realm-of-the-mad-god

 

Explanation

In Realm of the Mad God the players move through a world and kill enemies. Players control a single unit that shoots projectiles at enemies. Players can move using standard FPS controls and shoot the same way as well (players shoot in the direction the mouse is pointed). The game is a Top Down Shooter / MMO that allows a lot of freedom for movement. The main component of the game consists of finding enemies, killing them, and getting loot. Even though it sounds simple it is not. This game uses a perma-death mechanic. If the player dies they lose all of their items, their cloths, and their money – everything – forever. Players can create new characters after they die and they can use the same name as the previously deceased character but they must begin the game from the first level and earn back all of the items they previously had. The game is free to play but it has a fairly heavy focus on micro-transaction. Players can purchase pets, potions, random chests that contain random items, and much more. Players can enter portals that transport them to dungeons, areas where stronger monsters await but the loot is better, when they enter a portal the player must either complete the dungeon or teleport out which will take them back to the main town in the game. Killing strong monsters gains the player fame. Fame is used to show the skill of a player to the rest of the community. Players can even look up the players with the highest fame on a list titled “Legends”. This means that players who survive, and prove they are strong enough to kill difficult enemies, can receive real fame from the game, at least within its own community.

 

Screenshot

Starting in the main section of the screen the left ¾ of the screen is the play area. In the center of

RotMG gameplaythe screen just below the middle is the player character. Here he can be seen firing purple projectiles at his opponent who is currently covered in his own attacks. The enemy fires projectiles back at the player all of which can be seen here as large whit circles, flowers, and blue balls. In the upper right portion of the screen is the mini-map. The player is always centered on the map. Enemies are shown as small red dots. The mini-map is also covered in darkness until the player has explored the area, similar to the fog of war mechanic. Beneath the mini-map are the player’s name and a small icon of himself. To the right of that is a small white house, this button teleports the player back to the main town instantly. Moving further down we see the status meters. The top most bar is the fame bar representing your character’s current level of fame. Beneath that are the HP bar, obviously showing health, and then the MP meter again showing the obvious amount of magic power remaining. Below that we see four boxes which represent the character’s currently equipped items. In order from left to right are the weapon, secondary item, armor, and an accessory slot. Beneath that we see the player’s inventory which consists of only 8 slots. Notice the three small tabs on top of the inventory window, they allow the player to select different stats or displays in the area containing the inventory. Finally below the inventory are the characters health (red) and mana potions (blue) including the amount remaining.

 

Strategy

  • If a player is in a tough situation and their health is getting low it is usually a good idea to just leave the area by teleporting back to the home town.
  • Carrying multiple weapons and items is good for switching them out as certain situations require. I.E. High attack bonus ring during times of ease and a high health ring for more difficult fights.
  • Players can run away from enemies in an attempt to make them follow, this can be used to line up multiple enemies so that the player can hit them all simultaneously.

 

Dynamics

  • Since players have very limited inventory space they must be very picky with what they pick up. Players tend to only keep items that are useful for them or are better than what they have.
  • Because the game is perma-death based players are very cautious with their actions and they care more about their characters.
  • The increased care about the characters may cause some players to be wary of attempting higher difficulty dungeons.

 

Additional Notes

I enjoy the concept and the novelty of a game that has permanent death but I question its usefulness in mainstream gaming. Most players don’t want to put time into a character if there is a chance it will become completely useless and a waste of time. Blizzard did this already in the Diablo series in Nightmare mode. After playing this for an hour, I think I want to make it a weekly thing, it is actually quite addictive.

 

Similar Games

Diablo II

The Binding of Isaac

Path of Exile

8 Bit MMO

 

Design Ideas

Not a lot to be honest. The dungeon crawling, one life thing was already done by Blizzard over a decade ago so this is fairly old hat. The only real difference between the two is that it is done in pixel graphics as opposed to 3D and the skill trees were removed. I suppose if I were forced to make something based off of what this game had to offer it would simply be a very fast paces MMO game. In this game players would not have conventional quests and would instead level solely through fighting. Their prowess in battle would unlock higher difficulty dungeons which are only available to players of similar skill levels, thus eliminating the “noob” aspect of the game. Lower skill players would play with similar skill players until they skill up enough to progress. This may feel limiting but a game only for the elite would appeal to a niche crowd and may inspire a cult like following. Though I fail to see how even this idea is much different from almost every dungeon crawling, loot gathering game out there. Maybe we could add a bit of Metroidvania to it and force players to retrieve certain items they need to access other areas. Or, conversely we can play it similar to how Zelda was and place all players in a live world that is having constant problems with monsters invading it. This could have multiplayer dungeons that require group problem solving activities to progress.

Game Journal – Gunpoint

Designer/Developer: Suspicious Developments

Platform: PC

Date: May 23, 2014

 

Explanation

In Gunpoint player take the role of a private investigator who has been hired to find a murderer. Players must infiltrate buildings in an attempt to retrieve secret documents, video tapes, email correspondence, and much more. As the game progresses the player is able to purchase tools to aid them in their endeavor. The player is able to perform acrobatics in the form of jumping, clinging to walls and ceilings, and tackling. Players can, and must, also rewire the electronics in certain buildings in order to proceed. This can be done in multiple ways. Players can wire light switches to devices like elevators, doors, security cameras, and even enemies weapons. As the player progresses they begin facing increasingly complex security systems. Eventually the player cannot simply hotwire anything they feel like and must bypass additional security systems to gain access to subsequent systems. The player faces the challenge of using the guards in buildings as pawns and they must also figure out how to gain access to closed circuit systems. In addition to the main objective in every mission there are also sub objectives that increase or decrease your reputation with your clients. Some clients will want you to avoid violence completely during a mission while others will want no witnesses left alive. Since Gunpoint is an espionage game the player is able to complete missions without ever being detected if they desire.

 

Screenshot

Explain the screenshots and all of the relevant information on them.

Gunpoint gameplay

Figure 1. Tackling a security guard out of a 3rd story window is pretty typical.

Gunpoint gameplay 2

Figure 2. Crosslink allows players to rewire the level.

 

Strategy

  • Utilizing the crosslink can have some amusing and irritating consequences. Try linking multiple things together to create automated systems that do the work for you.
  • Players can turn off lights to draw a security guard’s attention. This is very useful for ambushing them and knocking them out.
  • Buff guards can’t be pounced on or killed with doors, try locking them in a room and removing their access to the hand scanner on the door, otherwise, they can be killed with a shorted out light switch.
  • Sound detectors and movement detectors can be used to link systems of different colors together, not directly, but it is possible.

 

Dynamics

  • Since players do not have an ability to attract guards other than being seen (which usually results in death) sometimes taking out a certain guard can completely break the level.

Notes

The game could benefit from some sort of attraction ability, like knocking on a wall. Sometimes it seems that the levels are designed in such a way that if the player takes out certain guards the level is unable to be completed, this can be frustrating since there is no way to restart a level unless the player dies. If all guards are dead/disabled and the player cannot progress without one alive, they have to abandon the level (which can only be done twice). Providing the player with an option in the menu to restart a level would be beneficial. I found the jumping charge-up mechanic to be clunky at first but once it was fully upgraded I found it to be significantly more useful. Maybe players should just have fully charged jumps all the time and make the distance relative to the suit upgrade only.

 

Similar Games

Tenchu: Stealth Assassins

Metal Gear Solid

Dishonored

 

Design Ideas

Game Journal – TitanFall

Designer/Developer: Respawn Entertainment

Platform: Xbox One, Xbox 360, PC

Date: May 23, 2014

 

Explanation

Titanfall is a FPS in which players battle each other in multiple game types. This includes CTF, Hard Point Domination, Pilot Hunter, Attrition, and Last Titan Standing. Players engage each other in teams of up to, but no more than 6 vs. 6. Killing enemies or NPC’s provides the player with a discount to the time required to call in a Titan. Once players have killed enough enemy units or they have waited out the titanfall timer they may call in a titan, a vertical mechanized tank, to enter and pilot. Once in a titan any enemy units a player kills reduces the titan’s ability core. Ability cores boost a titan’s shields, damage, or movement capabilities depending on the type of titan the player is using. There are three types of titans: Ogre – Slow heavily armored titan with the shield core ability (increases defense), Strider – Fast lightly armored titan with the dash core ability (increases mobility), and the Atlas – Medium speed, medium armored with the damage core ability (increased damage). The titans can be personalized by selecting weapons, abilities, kits, and artillery. Just like titans pilots can also be personalized. The game employs a combination of genres into to create its unique feel. The genres are military shooter, mech combat, and parkour style movement mechanics.

 

 

Mechanics

Spatial Awareness

Twitch Reaction

Evasion

Combat Strategy

 

 

Screenshot

TitanFall Screenshot 1

Figure 1. The view from inside a Titan

Titanfall, like many fast paced combat shooters, has a lot of data that needs to be managed at any given time. Starting with Figure 1 we can see the mini-map in the upper left corner. The mini-map functionality is similar to Battlefield in that, players and enemies are not visible unless they are firing their weapon. This is combined with the Halo style mini-map for the NPCs which are always shown and are more obvious when they are moving. In the upper center of the screen we can see the titan life bar. Notice the six thick sections below the six thin sections. The thinner part represents the titan’s outer shield. The shield discharges before the titan begins taking physical damage, which is represented by the six thicker bars. If the six thicker bars are depleted the entire indicator will become a black and yellow striped bar, this is known as doom. Just under the health meter there is a small orange bar, this is the enemy health meter, it only shows up when a titan is targeted and will remain until a new titan is targeted. On the right side of the screen you can see the orange, white, and teal text. This text is the player death data. It reads from left to right [This Player – Used this Weapon – To Kill This Player]. The color of the text identifies whether the players are enemies or friendlies. Enemies are always in orange text and teammates are always in teal text. On the bottom right corner of the screen you see a hexagon with a couple of broken up rings circling a smaller hexagon. This is the titan’s core ability meter. It counts down like a clock until it can be activated. Directly to the left of the ability core we can see the currently equipped weapon and the ammo available in it. Slightly to the left of the weapon we see a small white bar and the letter F, this is the titans Artillery slot, when the white bar is full the artillery is ready to fire, otherwise it is red and will slowly recharge. Moving further to the left we see a small shield with another white bar below it, this is the titan’s activated defense ability. This can change depending on the load out a pilot chooses for their titan. Finally in the far left corner we see the game timer and team scores. Again the enemy team is represented by the orange bar and the friendly team is blue/teal. The bars fill up as the goal for the round is completed; first team to fill the bar wins. Figure 2 shows a pilot performing parkour maneuvers with the assistance of his belt rockets. When a player utilizes his belt rockets they become increasingly visible to enemy titans and players. The jet exhaust is like a fingerprint that other players look for and can be a pilot’s saving grace or their downfall.   Figure 3 shows the game from the view of a pilot. Again the mini-map is located top left, but this time there is no health bar in the center. Pilots are informed of their health by the color of the edges of the screen. If a pilot is injured they become cloudy and red until the pilot recovers. The bottom

TitanFall Screenshot 2

Figure 2. A pilot using his belt boosters for parkour.

TitanFall Screenshot 3

 Figure 3. A titan waiting to be embarked.

right corner shows the pilot’s titan’s cooldown instead of “core ability”. To the left is the weapon currently equipped and then the pilot’s explosives represented by a small white grenade and the letter F. Continuing to the left is the pilot’s active ability shown with a small white bar and the letter Q, and finally the game information counter in the bottom left exactly as it was in the titan. In this image the center targeting reticle for the player’s weapon is more obvious and exists in the same position regardless of whether the player is controlling a pilot or titan.

Strategy

  • Players can utilize stealth to evade enemy titans and assault enemy players and NPCs.
  • Grenades can be utilized to dispatch a camping player or a group of NPCs.
  • Setting up Arc Mines in highly traveled paths can provide a player with a quick free kill while providing the enemy with a headache.
  • Players can grapple walls and hang on them to surprise enemy pilots.
  • Selecting your burn cards immediately before a match can give the player a significant advantage during the match.
  • If an enemy pilot goes invisible, look for their jet exhaust, that, never disappears completely.

Dynamics

  • Because titans come down from the sky they can be used to crush enemies or other titans.
  • Players cannot leave the designated combat area, if they do, they will die after 10 seconds. But, players can sit on the edge of the map and move in and out without dying as long as they are back in the combat area before the timer runs out. This allows for some cheesy gameplay tactics.
  • Because players must wait the same amount of time to call down a titan, almost every player receives their titan at the same time resulting in a sort of pilot heavy – titan heavy – pilot heavy – titan heavy feel to the flow of the game.
  • Because of how powerful titans are if one is called in early (burn cards) it has the capability to heavily skew the balance of the battle toward the team with the titan.

Notes

The game campaign is non-existent. The campaign consists of regular multiplayer games with some added dialogue between rounds. This is extremely disappointing considering that most FPS games have a decent campaign as well as multiplayer combat. Additionally the game is lacking significant dynamic content. There is no destruction in the levels, which makes no sense considering we have titans. There are no dynamic events or scripted events that alter the level or even give the players a sensation that a dynamic event might be locked away somewhere. Some scripting in the campaign intentionally misleads players to believe that there may be some dynamic event that can happen, but it is a farce. The game could use some dynamic mobs, events, or terrain and an actual campaign wouldn’t hurt either.

 

Similar Games

Battlefield

Mech Warrior

Mirrors Edge

 

Design Ideas

  • A RTS style game with unit call-downs like titans.
  • Mech Warrior vs. World of Tanks
  • Terminator style military shooter where people and mechs have to face off against a technologically superior conscience (like a supercomputer hive mind). Think ridiculously advanced AI making gameplay extremely difficult.

Game Journal – Half Minute Hero

Designer/Developer: Opus

Platform: PC (Controller Support), Xbox 360, PSP

Date: May 20, 2014

 

Explanation

Time Management

Puzzle Solving

Twitch Reaction (healing)

 

Screenshot

Half Minute Hero Gameplay

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy

Level up -> Reset Time -> Level Up -> Buy Upgrades -> Level Up -> Reset Time -> Level Up -> Kill Boss

 

Dynamics

  • Time management forces players to make rash decisions.
  • Because the reset cost increases on each use the player may end up being unable to complete the mission because they would not be able to earn enough $$ to reset if necessary.
  • Players can only carry one healing item, because of this they may not be able to complete a mission due to random encounters forcing them to heal before they reach the level boss.

 

Additional Notes

Similar Games

Design Ideas

Game Journal – Papers Please

Designer/Developer: Lucas Pope
Platform: PC
Date: May 20, 2014
Game Location: http://dukope.com/

Explanation
Papers Please is listed as a “dystopian document thriller”. In the game players attempt to verify immigration documents based on rules set by the governing country Arstotska. Players must race against the clock in order to earn as much money as possible. One cardinal game mechanic in Papers Please is time management. As the game progresses players are forced to deal with an increasing amount of documents forcing the player to begin dealing with not only time but space. Spatial Management quickly becomes another issue for players as the table top they are able to work on has a limited amount of space. Additionally the player begins having to deal with increasingly complex information and Data Verification. Finally, at set points throughout the game the player is forced to make decisions regarding the subversion of Arstotska by allowing insurgents through the border. This is an important decision for the player because allowing the insurgents through the checkpoint increases the player’s income significantly, but not allowing them through could put the player at risk. This is an obvious form of triangularity.

During gameplay the player receives documents from NPCs and verifies them for accuracy. After checking the data players have the ability to allow or deny the NPC access into Arstotzka. If the player finds discrepancies in the documents they are able to check them with a system that either confirms or denies that the discrepancy is legitimate. If the discrepancy is legitimate the player is furnished with additional options to either detain/deny or confirm the NPC’s identity. Eventually players are able to detain and even scan the NPCs in order to verify increasingly complex information. Players must verify the height, weight, names, serial-numbers, issuing cities, seals, countries, appearance, and much more before they can allow an NPC through the checkpoint. Additionally players are forced to take care of their family between work days. This is simply a matter of making enough money during the work day to provide their family members with shelter, food, heating, and medication. Finally players are able to upgrade the checkpoint booth in which they work which provides keyboard shortcuts to the most commonly used actions like verification and stamping.

Screenshot
Papers Please Gameplay
Notice the arrow that the cursor is hovering over on the right side of the screen. This arrow is the tab that allows the player to access the “Denied” and “Approved” stamps that are used on the entry visas like the one in the center of the screen. The Entry Permit to the right of the Entry Visa is an example of a supplemental document that the player must verify. On the left of the screen you can see the NPC in question. The Entry Visa has a picture on it that must match the NPC on the left, as well as the country of issue, the sex of the NPC, the issuing city, and the expiration date of the Visa. In the bottom right corner there is a small exclamation mark in a red diamond. This is the tab that allows players to enter verification mode. The bottom left corner of the screen contains (from left to right) the current in game date/time, current ID requirements, communication/recording device, Information book, and the NPC’s weight. Directly above those things is a desktop that the player can use to place documents they do not need access to. When documents are on this table they are not readable and are significantly reduced in size rendering them useless. The documents explode when they are dragged to the workstation, which is the large area in the bottom right side of the screen. The top of the screen shows the exterior of the checkpoint. The black characters are NPC’s waiting in line to enter the checkpoint booth (small brown building with the megaphones on top). The light blue characters are security guards working at the checkpoint.

Strategy
• Look at obvious data first like photos before dates that require more investigation.

Dynamics
• Because screen space is limited certain pieces of data can be easily overlooked.
• The player must hand all documents back to the NPC before they will continue on; this can short the player time critical to getting a paycheck.
• Players are only paid for immigrants processed before 6PM game time. This can result in lost playtime if the player feels they do not have time to process an additional immigrant when the end of day is near.
• Because of the time dynamic players may feel rushed to process immigrants resulting in simple errors.
Additional Notes

Similar Games

Design Ideas