This game was inspired by the hectic experience of grocery shopping during the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. While walking into a grocery store and trying to get everything you need while remaining socially distant from others is usually more stressful than fun, we wanted to use the collective experience as the basis for bringing people in isolation together. Multiplayer games like this one are great ways to connect with friends even when you can't see each other in person.
What it does
In this game, a player and their friends attempt to cooperatively complete a shopping list in a set period of time without coming into close contact with each other or other shoppers. Players are tasked with searching for their items while navigating a maze-like supermarket layout with narrow hallways and obstacles. Players are punished for entering other characters' "bubbles". The game also generates a Jitsi link to allow people in the server to communicate with one another during the game about accomplishing their tasks and cheer each other on.
How I built it
We built this game using the Godot game engine and the GodotScript language, as well as 2d assets and sound effects from kenney.nl and itch.io. We started by following a Godot RPG tutorial (https://godottutorials.pro/rpg-godot-tutorial/) to get a basic idea of how building a game in Godot worked, and then added in all the things that make our game unique: a multiplayer system, a labrythine supermarket, shopping lists, "bubbles" around characters, time limits, etc.
Challenges I ran into
Implementing the multiplayer system was probably the most difficult part of building this game. Ensuring that changes were reflected across all player's screens was a surprisingly challenging task and took some time to work out appropriately.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We weren't sure how far we would get when we started, so we're proud to have a game that is complete, playable, and fun.
What I learned
This was the team's first time using Godot, so the entire process was a learning experience. We now know a lot more about game development and are looking forward to building new games in the future.
What's next for D I S T A N C E D
Future updates for D I S T A N C E D would probably include a lot of new art - new maps, new player characters, new types of food, new NPC, etc. More music and sounds would also add to the experience. Additionally, we'd like to implement more tasks (such as checking out) and surprise challenges (such as sending players back for new items at the last minute).
We've added Windows and Linux releases of the game on our GitHub, so please try it out!