Section 1 – Game Overview

1.1 High Concept

In a twist on traditional street racing games, players take the role of a courier, participating in illegal underground races. Competing with other couriers, using modified bicycles, players’ race through many locations throughout Dundee before completing various puzzles. The game is also designed to encourage people to keep fit while playing computer games and be mentally challenging. Players will utilise their quick thinking ability whilst under pressure and their fitness levels will be challenged during the other parts of the race.
The game is designed for the PC and all home console systems, which already have a large consumer base. The peripheral devices offered by these systems offer a perfect control system for the game.

Alley Katz Poster

FIGURE 1 –ALLEY KATZ POSTER

1.2 Unique Features

Alley Katz benefits from being the first cycling title that encourages users to set up a bicycle in front of their computer screen. This is left up to the user; a simple method is to raise the rear of the bike making it easy to pedal indoors. A heart monitor is connected to the user, and depending on the game situation, the player must either reduce or increase his heartbeat.
The use of standard cycles as the vehicles of choice in the game is unusual. The variety of designs that the standard bike has had over the years allows for a large choice of unique vehicle for the players to choose from. Examples include tandem, recumbent, choppers and unicycles.
Combining the racing and puzzle genres is uncommon providing a unique experience for the player.

1.3 Common Questions

1.3.1 Reasons For Creating This Game

Currently, there are no titles in this niche. The entire team involved share a passion for racing and puzzle games and making this type of game fulfils one of our ambitions.

1.3.2 Game Location

The game will take place in a stylized recreation of large cities worldwide, utilising both real and fictional locations. Examples include Dublin, New York, Edinburgh, London, Tokyo, Barcelona, Paris and Amsterdam. For the purposes of this document, Dundee shall be the main location.

Section 2 – Feature Set

2.1 General Features

Huge world
3D graphics
32-bit colour
Large selection of bicycles
Large selection of characters
Rigid Body Physics
Audio

2.2 Multiplayer Features

Up to 8 players online per game
Easy to find a game
Easy to find your pal in huge world
Can chat over voice link

2.3 Gameplay

Heart Monitor – to determine players heart rate
Checkpoints

Various puzzles – locations are randomised
Avoid oncoming traffic and pedestrians on pavements

Section 3 – The Game World

3.1 Overview

The game takes place in a particular city. The main character is a bicycle courier, and will mainly be required to race between different checkpoints. Depending on the level, he has to complete certain tasks or puzzles. Following the completion of the task, the players will then race to the next checkpoint and so on until the route is completed.

3.1.1 Puzzles

As mentioned above, the puzzle elements take place in-between racing sectors. The puzzle elements may simply be a case of talking to an NPC to collect a specific item or taking part in a more complex puzzle.
These puzzles will all use distinct control schemes and interfaces but will maintain consistency with each other in terms of their mechanics.

3.1.2 Scoring

The game will use a tiered scoring system which is dependent on the time it takes the players to complete puzzles and how long it takes them to race between separate checkpoints. Each level will have its unique objective, and scoring will depend on this.
The heart monitor will also be utilised. To gain extra speed, the user must increase his heartbeats. In the puzzles, in order to reduce the speed of clock, players must reduce their heartbeats.

3.2 Camera

The player has a choice of 1st or 3rd person views. The height of the 3rd person view can be adjusted.
When entering buildings or completing puzzles, the camera will automatically switch to a 1st person view.

1st Person View

FIGURE 2 – 1ST PERSON VIEW ON BICYCLE

Section 4 – Game Entities

4.1 Game Characters

4.1.1 Male Character -

Andre, the male character is an incredibly athletic 25 year old full time courier. Standing roughly 6ft tall, with unkempt black hair, crystal blue eyes and full, handsome features. Dressing in casual sportswear, t-shirt and army shorts, he has a variety of piercings and tattoos.

4.1.2 Female Character –

Standing roughly 5ft 6 Siobhan could very well be the poster child for healthy living. Years of physical activity through sport have left her with a lean and toned body. Sporting blond shoulder length hair hitched in a pony tail, and eyes of the purest jade, Siobhan is indeed a pretty young lady. Dressing athletically, Siobhan wears a vest top and hoodie, with hot pants and trainers.

4.1.3 Pedestrians

Various pedestrians walk the streets.

4.1.4 Traffic

This consists of trucks, motorbikes, cars and buses.

4.1.5 Animals

Cats and dogs can be found roaming the streets whilst birds patrol the skies.

4.2 Bicycles

The user has choice of 7 bicycles; mountain, racer, chopper, uni-cycle, penny farthing, tandem and recumbent. The following figures illustrate them.

Chopper

FIGURE 3 – CHOPPER

Penny Farthing

FIGURE 4 – PENNY FARTHING


Racer

FIGURE 5 – RACER

Unicycle

FIGURE 6 – UNICYCLE

Tandem Bicycle

FIGURE 7 – TANDEM BICYCLE

Recumbent Bicycle

FIGURE 8 – RECUMBENT

Mountain Bicycle

FIGURE 9 – MOUNTAIN BIKE

Section 5 – User Interface

5.1 Graphical User Interface

GUI Menu FlowFIGURE 10 – MENU FLOW DIAGRAM

5.2 In-Game HUD

A: This represents the players stamina and it pulsates depending on the number of heartbeats.
B: This shows the other courier positions in the race. The ticks represent the number of puzzles completed.
C: This shows the players position in the world. Other markers are used to display the target location.

In Game HUDFIGURE 11 – IN-GAME HUD

Section 6 – Sound

The OpenAL library is incorporated into the engine to handle all of the sounds required. OgreAL is the wrapper which allows this integration. The game utilises 3 types of sound. The player is given a choice from 12 tracks.

  • Ambient
  • Sound Effects
  • Music

6.1 OpenAL Library and OgreAL Wrapper

OpenAL models audio sources from the perspective of the listener. Buffers contain the audio data, sources represent the position of the sound and the listener object represents the position of where the sounds are heard from.

6.2 Ambient Sounds

Ambient sounds add atmosphere to the environment. Depending on the weather conditions or the location, certain sounds are added to the background.

  • Rain
  • Wind
  • Sea
  • Environment

6.3 Sound Effects

All collisions will trigger and most interactions will trigger a sound. Refer to Appendix I for the entire list of sound effects.

6.4 Music

All out-game scenes will have accompanying music. The player has a choice of 12 tracks. Refer to Appendix I for the entire list of music.

Section 7 – Single-Player Game

7.1 Story

If the single player game is selected, the player begins his life as a courier. A love interest is also introduced, who must be impressed in order to win her heart.

7.1.1 Level 1

The game begins with a race against other couriers through the streets of Dundee. It is the end of the players first day at work, and all the employees have decided to have a race. The main objective is to be the first to finish. Secondary objective is to collect food which will be strewn all over the course, food such as bananas and chocolate bars which will enable the courier to cycle faster.

7.1.2 Level 2

Main objective is to collect 3 parcels from 3 places within a time limit. The player will have to find locations on the map provided then cycle quickly in order to collect. If the courier arrives late parcel will blow and kill the courier.

7.1.3 Level 3

Whilst delivering a package inside the building the courier comes out to find his bike has just been stolen. He catches a glimpse of the thief up the road. Main objective catch the thief cycling on a stolen bike. In order to catch him he/she must rob a bike quickly to give chase.

7.1.4 Level 4

Complete the stunt course doing special moves and tricks. Complete the course without breaking any bone. If the courier pulls a muscle he will slow temporarily for 10 seconds.

7.1.5 Level 5 – King of the Alley Katz

Just like the underground courier races in Dundee, the aim is to complete tasks in the quickest possible time.
Task 1: The player has to collect a leaflet, “Welcome to Dundee”.
Task 2: The player has to down a shot of whiskey and collect a stamp from the bar staff.
Task 3: The player has to purchase a Bournville chocolate bar.
Task 4: The player has to collect a menu from the “Agacan” Restaurant at the Nethergate.
Task 5: The player has to cycle to the Dundee Contemporary Arts cinema complex and collect 3 used ticket stubs that can be found inside and out.
When the courier completes all the tasks he must make it back to the University of Abertay. First back wins and is crowned King of the Alley Katz!

Section 8 – Multi-Player Game

8.1 Overview

The multiplayer game is similar to the single player, other players take the part of other couriers.

8.2 CO – OP

Another option is for the player to choose a tandem bike, and both players use the same bike at the same time.

8.3 Split – Screen or LAN

Players can choose to play against one another in a split screen mode or through a LAN.

8.4 Online

Similar to LAN, players can play against multiple opponents, however this time it can be across the globe.

The .pdf version of this report can be found here.

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Related posts:

  1. Alley Katz – Technical Design Document
  2. Alley Katz – Meeting Minutes
  3. Alley Katz Overview
  4. Alley Katz – Art Production Plan
  5. Dundonia – Adventure Platform Game

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