Small Tales

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Virginia Tech


Small Tales is a 2D video game with hand drawn and watercolor painted assets that incorporates a series of vignettes centered on the collection of artifacts. Growing up, I experimented with and  investigated a wide variety of media, such as Alice and GameMaker but ultimately decided to  sharpen my fine arts skills and incorporate them in to video game engines in this thesis. A variety  of point and click adventure games such as the King's Quest and Monkey Island series inspired  the development of this game due to their emphasis on narrative and player interaction.

This thesis developed from a series of earlier projects that helped me settle on four  primary objectives: vignetted narratives, player choice and consequences, visual and text  components working harmoniously, and replayability via randomized generation. A Processing  sketch emphasized the need for strong visual assets in addition to text-based narrative; in  addition to replayability via randomized strings or text for a unique narrative every iteration.  Afterwards, a Twine game further encouraged visual assets working with text, but solidified a  foundation in player choice and consequences. Finally, my first experiment in Unity with the  Adventure Creator helped me establish a functional workflow to achieve my four goals.

Small Tales itself revolves around a series of vignettes connected by the world of the  player character. Players wander an unfamiliar neighborhood to find artifacts that at the end of  the game reveal tiny stories about other worlds. The game was received well by players during  my defense for its ethereal atmosphere and for creating an engaging story world. But a handful  of suggestions from these same players could push the game to be even better. Small Tales will be available online after these critiques are taken under consideration.



Art, Video Games, Creative Technologies, Narrative, Unity