The making of Baby Demon Daycare. A retrospective study


This game came into existence when Jorden Marshall first thought up the idea as a pitching exercise for Trimester 5 students.  Each student thought up three game ideas that we could create and shared them with the class. We then had a few days to discuss the game ideas and form teams.  My thought process was that we had to do something interesting and achievable. Our class was a creative bunch because I thought they all came up with at least one interesting idea, so the main issue was – what is achievable?

The Game Design course at JMC was heavily weighted towards artwork/animation/filmmaking up to that point and we had just started to learn C#.  Another drawback is that we didn’t have anyone from a programming background. We only had the skills artists with a trimesters training in Playmaker to get our prototypes up and running.

Baby Demon Daycare particularly appealed to me because of the potential of horror/comedy.  After checking out this game –  I thought if we used this as a template for gameplay elements we could make a prototype. We made up a team of four with Jorden Marshall, Iainn Rettie and David Chapman.  I had worked on a project with Jorden and Iainn previously and knew that Jorden was a great 2D artist and Iainn was a passionate 3D artist and good writer.

Because of our skill set we decided to go with 3D animated models that Jorden would come up with the concept art work for.   David made the border to the room and set the camera and I set to work on the game loop.  We came up with a workable prototype in twelve weeks and then moved onto working on the polished final product the next few months.  I wouldn’t say I it was an easy task, but we brought our skills together to make a funny little game that I am proud of.

I most enjoyed coming up with ways to add “juice” to the game through transitions, integrating artwork into UI, movements, sounds and the use of particle effects.  Choosing the music was trickier.  After listening to some sample tracks from a fellow JMC music student I found a track I thought would suit his style and support our gameplay which he made for our game.

The most heartening/disheartening part of the process for me was the play testing period.  Watching someone play your game and pointing out bugs that you had yet to figure out how to fix was frustrating but it did put the pressure on me to come up with a solution.  By the last few playtests we had people seeming to enjoy the game loop, which was probably the most satisfying part.

I learnt that working collaboratively can give much more polished results.  Meeting up face to face regularly helped me most with figuring out where everyone was at with the game concept and how we could bring new ideas into the game.

Check out our game on Kongreagte  –

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