Backfire started out as small game project made in less than a week to test out the idea: "what if you could only shoot behind yourself?" The team consisted of only 3 people so we all shared a lot of the responsibilities. We loved the simple and straightforward concept and decided to further develop it for 2018's Enthusiast Gaming Live Expo. We took our prototype from a 2 player single-hit-death game to a 4 player best-of-5 arena shooter and showcased it at 2019's EGLX in affiliation with the Hand Eye Society.
Made in Photoshop
Roles & Responsibilities
Small development teams mean everyone has to do a little bit of everything. This was the case with Backfire. Over the course of development I helped with 2D and 3D art asset production, character animations, particle effects, UI art, UI animations and beautifying levels. One stand out experience was creating the logo for the game. I discovered that Adobe Photoshop has 3D modeling capabilities and more importantly can easily convert text into 3D objects. So I spent the better half of an evening trying to figure out Photoshop's 3D capabilities. It's turns out that its not that difficult of a feature to use if you have a little experience with other 3D modeling software, it's just really finicky!
"Did you know that Photoshop has 3D capabilities? Neither did I!"
Interact with images by clicking and dragging
UI was by far the most enjoyable aspect of working on Backfire. Having to place UI elements inside each player's view meant I had to be careful that particles or animations didn't overly obstruct the player's vision. However, in situations where the player didn't need to see, like when a player dies, I could completely block out the player's screen. The effect of the 'Game Over' or 'You Died' graphic is one of my favorites. There is just something so satisfying about slamming shut the player's vision like it's the door to a garage.
From left to right, Michael Arcadi, Rachel Theil and Nathan Powless-Lynes