Feet First! is a first person platformer that spans nine levels set across three differently themed worlds. In each level, you start on a platform high above the ground and must step off “feet first” and fall into the game action. With increasing difficulty, numerous obstacles, and unique game play - the player must use “jump pads” to successfully navigate each level. Player movement mechanics and level design have been tailored specifically for VR in order to prevent/reduce motion sickness and allow for long play experiences.
This game has been designed as a throwback/tribute to old school NES/SNES platformers, but with an entirely new viewpoint on the genre.
Playable Worlds (three levels in each):
1) Mountain Valley: Forrest themed
2) Crystal Cave: Underground/Cave themed
3) Final Frontier: Space themed
Successfully guide the character from the start to end of each level. Sounds simple, right? If dodging obstacles and reaching the next jump pad isn’t challenging enough, you may also collect gems scattered throughout the levels. Some level advancement is possible just by finishing a level, but unlocking end-game levels will require collecting all the gems in a set amount of time.
Tested game pads:
1) Samsung game pad
2) Moga Power Pro
Based on forum posting, button mappings should also work with most other major 3rd party Bluetooth controllers.
Using a game pad, the user can control the players forward, back, and left/right strafe movement. "Forward" direction is preset and cannot be changed. There is no left/right camera rotation - although the player can look in any direction they like. And looking around the world is imperative for plotting the correct path. In each level, the pause menu provides an option to reorient the screen (if the screen starts to drift left). This game can be played in a normal chair (swivel chair NOT required).
To navigate the levels, the player must hit "jump pads" that propels the character high into the air. Hitting the ground, or being sucked into the void of space will result in instant death. In each level, the player is pit against many obstacles, small puzzles, and even reverse gravity.
Moving jump pads
Disappearing/reappearing jump pads (figure out and remember the pattern)
Spinning platforms & jump pads
Rotating platforms & jump pads (around a central point)
This game allows for up to five (5) profiles so friends and family can share the game. Each profile saves that users level/world progress, lives, continues, and earned stars. In old school platforming tradition, each user starts with 3 lives and 3 continues. If a player exhausts all their continues, the world they are in will be reset. For example, if the user is in "World 2 - Level 3" and runs out of continues, the user will have to start again on "World 2 - Level 1".
Stars are earned by collecting gems scattered throughout the levels. Stars are used to unlock new worlds, although advancement is possible without collecting many gems. However, to unlock the 10th (bonus) level, the user must earn all 27 stars (3 from each of the 9 levels). To achieve 3 stars in a level, the user must collect all the gems while completing the level in a set time frame.
Many of the games in the GearVR store provide stunning visuals and fun game play. However, there seemed to be a divide into two categories.
1) On-rails shooter/tower defense where the player is always in one place (static).
2) Free roaming games, which usually resulted in motion sickness.
I set out to create a game that had more movement, challenge, and game length - all while avoiding motion sickness. I realized that bouncing was very enjoyable, and as long as gravity, acceleration, and direction are controlled properly. It was with this base game play mechanic that I set out to build a game that users can really sink their teeth into. This game is not easy, or short. It will keep user engaged and entertained for days, and weeks. It will provide high challenge to devout gamers, but is also very inviting to casual players.
FOR THE JUDGES:
Given the time frame you will have to play the game, I have unlocked the first level of each world. I suggest you at least play the first level in each world so you can get a full sense of the various gameplay and level design. For the published version, all levels (except world 1 - level 1) will be locked to start.