The group discussed having additional tools that tie in to certain levels but I felt that using potions instead would be a simpler way to incorporate additional skills and abilities and could provide more potential for players to spend more hamster treats in the store and increase the likelihood of them purchasing additional treats, generating income for the game. I came up with the idea of a potion to increase speed (Potion of Speed), a potion to decrease speed (Potion of Sloth) for those trickier levels and a strength potion (Potion of Strength) which would immunise Blip to enemy attacks. All potions have a duration limit so the player would have to purchase these regularly if they wanted to use them often.
One of the power-ups players can purchase with the hamster treats is additional health. I had an idea to include not only additional regular health but additional levels of health – powered up versions that last longer than regular health. I decided to design a grey, steel heart as the mid-tier health and the golden heart as the top tier health. I re-used my regular health asset and placed a colour overlay and glow to them in Photoshop.
For timed levels, the group thought it would be a great idea for the player to purchase additional time with their hamster treats, this would help any players who need a bit more time if they were struggling to complete a timed level.
Grace came up with the idea of having a vinegar bottle available to combat the effects of the jellyfish enemy character on her underwater level. I wanted this bottle to have a different shape to the potions so it would be recognisable and used a brown colour to match the colour of vinegar.
I created a store page to display these items, detailing how many hamster treats they are worth. To generate potential revenue for the game, I added in the option for players to purchase packs of additional treats to spend in the store.
In addition to the power ups, we decided to have unlockable items that would be accessed by the player throughout the game and free of charge. We decided to have the unlockable be customisable clothing items that would help Blip during certain levels, for instance the Diver’s Helmet helps Blip breathe in the underwater level and the Incredible Cloak allows Blip to hover for a duration of time, useful for those big jumps.
Grace designed all the unlockables displayed here, I just incorporated them into the unlockables menu that I designed. Matching the colour scheme of the store page, I decided to leave any items that hadn’t been unlocked a mystery to the player until they do so, don’t want to spoil the surprise after all. To showcase the item being unlocked during gameplay, I had the idea of having a question mark spin around then emit a big glow and the unlocked item would appear as shown on the left using the cloak designed by Grace.
I also created a loading screen using Lauren’s Hammy asset. I animated him in After Effects using the puppet tool and keyframing slight rotations. I added some text to the screen as well. I decided to animate him moving across the screen to display the loading progress, similar to a loading bar. Using this method makes the loading progress clear to players and minimises the risk of frustrating the player. I chose orange for the background to keep in with the game colour scheme.