We came into the hackathon with no idea of what we wanted to do, so we brainstormed and somebody said the word "mail." We immediately knew what must be done: create a game that is somewhat challenging (in the same vein as flappy bird) that centers around a mailman trying to deliver mail as fast as he can.

What it does

It is a game with very simple controls. The left arrow button sends mail to the left. The right arrow button sends mail to the right.

How we built it

We started trying to build it from scratch using HTML and CSS. We soon realized this was not easy. We then searched for a web framework that did some of the behind the scenes stuff, such as creating physics and rendering images. We had three programmers working on different aspects of the game at all times and asked for each other's help when needed. One teammate worked on graphics and putting them together. Another worked on figuring the physics, collision detection and the start menu. The third teammate developed a randomization algorithm for the placement of mailboxes and scenery flowers along with a way to only allow one instance of mail on the screen at one time.

Challenges we ran into

None of us had any experience with JavaScript or Game Development in general. We also were only able to get a simple collision detection system working. We did not have enough time to implement a game over and restart function. The randomization algorithm occasionally spawns two mailboxes on top of each other. This is a problem. We also ran into optimization problems: the game will occasionally slow down when rendering too many mailboxes and flowers.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

We are especially proud of going from zero knowledge of both JavaScript and Game Development to having a near complete game running with few problems in the matter of 10 hours.

What we learned

We learned a lot about JavaScript's inner workings and the Phaser game development framework. We also learning much about Game Development and the "game loop" that every game must follow. We also learned how to use GitHub (somewhat).

What's next for Mailbox Hero

We plan to polish the game: add in actual customized collision detection, a few different mail trucks after a certain score has been accumulated, an achievement system, different packages to deliver to different mailboxes (this will require cat like reflexes, not programmer like), a level system, an end game and restart option, high score counter and a way to store it, obstacles that come towards the player, and credits.

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