Stitches

Who:
Susanna Harrison, Whitmore Benoit, Thomas Whitener, Dan Wilkins, Leana Galiel

Job:
Game Designer, Level Designer, Lead Animator

Worked with the entire team to design the game based off of an idea concocted by Whitmore Benoit, about a character who uses their enemies’ body parts to upgrade their own body. Co-Designed the puzzles and levels to be used in the game along with Whitmore. Mapped out the paths for the player’s avatar and NPC characters, along with positioning of enemies. Animated basic movement and attacks for the player and enemy avatars.

Basics:

  • 1 Player
  • 2-D Computer Platformer
  • Originally developed in Game Maker
  • Mechanic: A character which uses parts of their fallen enemies as upgrades, by attaching their enemies body parts to their own body to help with movement, defense, and attack.
  • Influenced by childhood stories of toys coming to life, such as Jim Henson’s The Secret Life of Toys television show, Pixar’s Toy Story, and A. A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh.
  • Game Maker Prototype

Toy Violence:

There is a good amount of controversy surrounding the amount of violence and gore in video games. From old arcade games like Death Race to the more current realism found in games such as Gears of War, there have always been critics. Some designers may choose to ignore them, and others will simply reduce the gore or not use game mechanics which might involve too much violence. Here come the rows of games where you can shoot a character 20 times and not a single drop of blood is to be found, and racing games where you can flip a car and magically it still drives without a scratch on the paint job. Still there are the few who instead try to show the silliness and irony in treating what is a fantasy as reality. Ever turned the ‘Gore Off’ in Alien Hominid? Now, instead of blood, flowers and glitter pop out when the player bites off the head of an enemy. So, how do you make a game with a main character who rips off the body parts of its dead enemy and attaches them to their own body ironically not seem so violent? You design the setting and narrative in a stuffed world, complete with a teddy bear main character and stuffed rabbits, bats and other creatures as the enemies. As the player wreaks havoc on the enemy’s base of operations, stuffing spurts out like a fountain from the dying. It is fascinating how something which seems so cute and innocent can also be so horribly gory.