💡 Inspiration

We wanted to create a way for people to be more sympathetic towards those with mental health issues. Being invisible, mental illnesses are hard to detect. It may also be difficult for those who are struggling to speak up.

We have drawn the main character as a male because studies have shown that men are less vocal about their mental illnesses due to societal expectations and traditional gender roles. We would like to help them break that! Men do suffer from mental illnesses. Pets are known to help with mental health recovery. With their unconditional love and affection for their owners, pets ease loneliness and reduce stress. Pets are also able to view the more vulnerable side of their owners than others outside and hence are used as the player’s point-of-view.

🔍 What it does

It’s an interactive simulation game which tells the story of how an emotionally sensitive pet dog helps its owner through tough times. Due to covid, many people cannot travel across the country/ overseas to be with their family. In this story, the student only has their pet doggo with them. Join Doggo in helping his owner in different ways, and learn about the struggles people with mental health experience.

🔧 How we built it

We used unity! It was not easy! :D It required quite a bit of tinkering and a lot of trial and error. We first worked out the main storyline, wanting to introduce the plight of people with mental health issues through the eyes of an emotional support dog. We drafted a rough storyline, creating a moodboard in Figma to try and figure out the look and feel of the game. After deciding on a more pixel art style, we used piskel to create our main characters and props.

🏃‍♂️ Challenges we ran into

With it being the first time using Unity, we were unfamiliar and ran into multiple issues. We found it challenging to come up with game mechanics and figure out how they should work in the Unity game engine within a short period of time. This took up a fair bit of time, in trying to learn and understand the frames of how Unity operated, before we could apply it onto our idea.

🏅 Accomplishments that we're proud of

We dun it bruh We learnt about Unity2D and sprite animations. It was satisfying to see our pixel art come to life through animation.

🧠 What we learned

  • Unity, specifically Unity2D to create our 2D experience
  • piskelapp for custom pixel art
  • Figma for storyboarding

⏭️ What's next for RuffDay

  • Other stories of ppl with different situations?
  • More room for customisation to make the story feel more personalised
    • E.g. naming the pet dog, naming characters and dressing them up
  • Make different pathways for different endings.
  • Create different starting scenarios to include other forms of mental illnesses.
  • Add more games in between

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