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Dealing with Trauma but in a fun way

YEAR 2, WEEK 18 2/1/21 - Narrative writing and exploration

Current thesis thoughts:

This week I had work around developing the game as well as finalizing the beats of my narrative. I know that what I want is to follow the journey of a person mourning as a Hispanic American but as I say that it gets weird. I think the issue is always that I'm stuck in my head for too long and then boom I wanna start over. SO not doing that I just will move forward.

My current thought on my thesis from this actually stems from the thought that death is sort of an alien concept to people until it's not. we let people into our lives either by accident of birth or by choice, and there's always that nagging thought that "this too shall pass." no matter how great they are it is always bittersweet because they will someday leave us. At least that's what media has me thinking. Bojack horseman a show known for its gritty and realistic approach to death, even if it is portrayed with talking animals, does exactly that. it snuffs out lives and leaves people sort of poorer for it. it doesn't really help that it is being told from the perspective of a vain nihilistic alcoholic former TV star. So that actually kind of help. it's all about who is experiencing the loss. Funerals may be for the living but we all have them for different reasons.

Media list:

Konami. (1997) Castlevania: Symphony of The Night (Playstation) [Video game]. Ginza, Chūō, Tokyo, Japan. Konami.

described as a gothic horror video game, Castlevania is a 2D free-roaming puzzle-platforming action RPG. while that may be a mouthful it's a pretty good place to work off of with my game. while I don't plan on my game being as expansive as this one, I want the player to maneuver around the world as if they have the ability to go anywhere, even though there are clear places that move the story forward.


My current layout of the game is pretty shortly formated. what I want to happen is the player will go through the land of the dead and experience a pre-scripted story. the beats are as followed

I will divide the worlds the player is in with a color choice on my text. red they are in the waking world black they are in the land of the dead.

  • the main character (MC) refuses to leave their room.

  • the MC will at night be transported to another world where they meet a heroic figure dressed in a luchador outfit.

  • the MC will move thought-out the world confronting monsters symbolic of the stages of grief.

  • after one level the character wakes up in their bed and goes about their day in a more linear story, they leave their room and are confronted with by a family member. (show brief instances of lost family members on the wall.)

  • over a few levels, the heroic figure loses their visage and looks more like a normal person (characters maternal figure, mother/grandmother/aunt still not sure)

  • MC admits that they can't move forward because they are going through something and realize that they are there to meet someone they lost and don't want to do it.

  • MC wakes up and processes some things with their family member. "Why aren't you angry/sad/miserable like me"

  • MC returns to the dreaming world where they finally confront a boss (denial).

  • MC meets with soul, it is the MCs friend, they talk for a bit, and the MC says they'll talk soon. and that they have missed them

to assuage the story being about suicide because that isn't what want. I want the ending of the game to be a slideshow showing them living their life and then taking with their friend. as well as the family member talking with their departed loved one. The actual narrative is still a little loose but the game is in its early stages and I don't want to get stuck on one thing before I realize I can't actually make it happen.

Work was done and Choices made:

Vocabulary to use in the game

  • loss-losing someone to death

  • land of the dead - "this is where the dead LIVE"

  • denial - a desire to run away from a problem.

  • anger - a desire to release negative feelings in explosive ways.

  • bargaining - desire to trade your lot for something less bad.

  • depression - impassive and aggressive feeling of nothing matters

  • acceptance - knowing that your relationship with your loved one has changed but has not been lost

I've currently just played around with making sure I can make a level easily maneuverable while making it look visually uncluttered, this is because I want the art to fill the space.

from Scott's input, I decided to make a 2D game with a 3D toolset.

what does that mean? while in 2D toolsets (in unity) I would have the tools to make easy to set maps, I cannot create good AI for monsters or maneuver the worlds as well.

Current Questions

My only real question right now is. "What am I going to do if this is boring?" and that's about it. I want to make this game interesting but that may because I am giving more of myself in it the story and because of that it's really freaking scary. I know that hating this work won't mean people hate me I'm past that. but I'm not past wondering if how I see the thing is stupid.

Likely next steps

my next steps are to keep on working with the level of my game design and that's about it.

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