DarkStar

Developed by Team Joy/Havoc as a Senior level game project. The team was a multi-disciplinary team featuring four programmers and a single artist. I was the tools programmer, and developed the DarkStar level editor(Also referred to as the Joy/Havoc editor) that is shown in the video below.

Code Samples:
  • EntityList.cs
    (Currently unavailable)

DarkStar is a 2.5D platform shooter developed using XNA game studio and C#. It was developed in a single semester.

I had one game project class remaining at DigiPen so I chose to do an independent study focusing on tools development. I met with my instructor on the first day, after talking to two members of the Tad Studbody team who had formed Team Joy/Havoc, and asked if I could develop tools for a team as my independent study. After some negotiation I was allowed to, knowing my grade in the class was dependent solely on the tools I developed.

Over the course of the semester I worked closely with the Joy/Havoc team to develop a level editor with all the basic functionality they needed to make the levels their game design called for. As the semester progressed, the design began to shift slightly, and the architecture and systems began to become better defined allowing me to tighten down the editor's functionality and add some advanced features in the process.

It was an absolute blast to work on tools and only tools for a whole project, and nothing tops the thrill I got the first time our artist sat down and built a real level with it. While getting to work with C# offered some hand holding, I feel the experience in interface design and usability was invaluable and I can't wait to build more tools in the future.

UPDATE: After the end of the semester, two of the programmers on Team Joy/Havoc graduated and left to begin their careers, one at 5th Cell and the other at LucasArts. I stayed on simply to do support for the level editor and bug fixes. The remaining programmer brought on another programmer and they have continued the project. This new programmer was in no way involved with the development of the editor and has found it very easy and enjoyable to work with, making this easily my most rewarding project to date!