Cooperation and Competition:
Project Role: Sole Creator.
Four Player Squared (4P²) is a platformer for two to four players that plays with elements of cooperation and competition simultaneously. Players have to navigate through levels using platforms, switches, and keys, all while collecting points and avoiding various traps. The core mechanic which defines the co-opetiton gameplay is that players interact with each other physically. Players can push each other, carry each other, and jump off each other to get to new areas of each level. Players can compete to get the most points, or they can (and sometimes must) cooperate to reach new areas of each level.
Death is a mechanic.
When any single player dies, it’s of no penalty. Within a second the dead player will respawn on top of any one of the living players. This promotes not only a sense of adventure to explore dangerous areas, but it also creates player roles. Some players like to sit back and become a respawn point for their friends, while others use this to instantly teleport to another player’s location. Although, players often get excited and when everyone dies at once, they are all sent back to the last checkpoint. This system creates a flow where if players succeed or fail, they all experience the same feeling. This flow allows players to have experiences that start at one point, spread out based on individual choices, and then are brought back together through careful level design.
Being a multiplayer game, community is very important. With 4P²’s level editor, players can easily create and share new experiences through a simple interface.
I was the sole developer for 4P². Development time lasted 4 months, from January 2009 to April 2009. The game was developed in Multimedia Fusion 2. Art assets were created in Photoshop. Sound assets were created with sfxr, and music was created with FL Studio. Many people provided wonderful feedback and playtesting to make it a polished experience.