Mon Petit Lion

Mon petit lion logo

ROLE: GAMEPLAY PROGRAMMER
Project overview

I worked on Mon Petit Lion (my little lion) for my internship at 3D Duo, during summer 2014.

MPL is a tablet game for young children in which the player has to take care of a lion in a circus.

The player can accomplish simple quests for his animal friends (finding an item in the circus, drawing and cutting one for an animal…), play 8 different mini-games and create dioramas using puzzle backgrounds and stickers.

The project has been developped in 3 months, in a team of 6 persons.

The game relies on 3 main gameplays:

> Quests
> Minigames
> Puzzles & stickers

All of those had to be independent but also had to interact with each other.

The whole game takes place in a pop-up book, with paper creatures and decorations.

I had to make the book persistent, opening to a page, closing and changing to another for other game sessions, etc.

Since the game was a work for 3D Duo, it had to be of a real marketable quality.

It involved many iterations on the gameplay, making sure everything was alright, and even playtests with a play-lab!

The game will be available on the appstore and the google store very soon.

When we left 3D Duo at the end of the internship, only the audio and localization was left to do.

DEVELOPED FEATURES & TOOLS
Quests
The quest system is a verally important part of the game, as the players will spend 40% of their time doing them. They had to be simple, yet entertaining, so that the players can do them repeatedly to get many puzzle parts and stickers.


The quests take place in the circus, which works based on the built-in pathfinding system of Unity. When the player is ready, a quest will appear, with a quest giver, eventually objectives, and a quest taker.

There are multiple quest types, but they are all based on the same system. This way, it is possible to create a lot of other quest without too much work.

I used my experience as a content designer for a private World of Warcraft server to create this quest system. In Wow, quests are a really complex and large class, but we didn’t need all of their parameter in Mon Petit Lion.
So I took the parts we needed, and crafted a handy and easy-to-understand system.

When the player completes a quests, he receives items, which he can use in the stickers book. But quests aren’t the only way to win items.

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Minigames
There are 8 mini-games in Mon Petit Lion, each with its own gameplay and challenges, and each rewarding with stickers and puzzle pieces.


Since each games works on the same principle, it was obvious that inheritance was the thing to do.
Each time a mini-game is selected, a new scene starts, with a MiniGameManager, which will set the game up, start the tutorial, then the game, and reward the player once it is finished.
The mini-games had to be really easy to understand and full of feedbacks, so there have been many iterations on almost all of them, which took a lot of time but ultimately made the players who playtested the game have a lot of fun.

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Stickers & puzzles

The last part of the game is the stickers book. In it, the player can create dioramas using puzzle parts and stickers he collected by completing quests and playing mini-games. First, he has to unlock enough puzzle pieces to make one, then reassemble it, and finally he can put stickers on it, and eventually take a screenshot that will be saved on their computer/phone for later use as a background or such.

The situation I had with this feature is that there should be polygon colliders for the stickers, since you want to select them by touching them. But it is impossible, because Unity only lets 2D colliders and physics exist on the Z (face) plane, not the Y (horizontal) one.
The colliders are square, and don’t really fit the stickers, but it has not been seen as a problem in the playtests. That taught me that some details are not important, even if they really look like they are!

IN-GAME SCREENSHOTS