Magnificent Adventure at the Magnitude Museum (MAMM)

Magnificent Adventure at the Magnitude Museum is a puzzle/adventure game where the player collects items from a museum while avoiding hazards. The player must explore the museum, solve puzzles, and avoid hazards to get the correct items. Most of the items will actually be information, such as photos.

MAMM is an educational game intended to give players a sense of scale, especially with regard to nanotechnology. The following web sites have materials with the same basic goal, although MAMM will be more advanced and include more material:
Powers of Ten video
Sizing Things Down card game
Sizing up the Universe browser game

Genre: puzzle/adventure

This game includes puzzle elements and adventure elements. Puzzles will be in the form of assignments that the player character (a student) gets from a professor. Exploring the museum and interacting with museum exhibits provide the adventure elements of the game.

Game Design

Color

You are a student in Professor Ernest Dufflehead's Intermediate Measurements class and he has given you an assignment to take pictures of various exhibits at the Magnitude Museum. Unfortunately the professor's instructions are not exactly clear. In fact, they're downright cryptic, but if you want to get a good score on the assignment you'll have to puzzle them out. And you'll have to do it fast, because the number of points you get for each picture depends on how many other students take pictures of it before you do. Not only that, but your hated rivals will do everything they can to stop you, including changing (or stealing) exhibits, hacking the museum's security system and robot guards, and anything else they can think of.

Goals

Maximize your score by taking as many pictures as you can as quickly as you can.

Actions

◆ Move around on a museum floor.
◆ Use one of the museum's elevators to move from one floor to another.
◆ Use apps on your phone to find out what exhibits you need to take pictures of and to review pictures you have taken.
◆ Take pictures of exhibits.
◆ Hack the museum's computers, cameras, and robots.

Opposition

◆ Time: there is a limited time to take all of the pictures.
◆ Figuring out the professor's cryptic specifications for the assignment.
◆ Robot guards: hacked or malfunctioning robots will try to stop you from moving around the museum or taking pictures.

Decisions

◆ Where to go in the museum.
◆ How to avoid hazards.
◆ Whether to attempt hacking the museum's robots and security system.

Graphics and Sound

Graphics will be simple 3D graphics. Many of the objects will be exhibits that are simple geometric shapes with image textures. Animations will be simple: people will slide rather than walk.

Sounds will primarily be warnings and alerts, with the possibility of background music if time permits.

Game AI

Game AI will be used to control robots and NPCs (other students). That will include pathfinding and decision making. Since there will be more than one way for NPCs to make things difficult for the player character, the game AI will need to decide what kind of opposition will be the most fun and make the best story.

Game AI will also be used to generate the layout of the museum, the exhibits, and the puzzles (assignments of exhibits to photograph). The layout of the museum, exhibits, and puzzles should change from game to game to increase replay value. If time permits, the game AI will include a story manager that evaluates story elements in the game and changes them to make better stories and make the game more fun.

Another possible use of AI is to model the player's choices and mistakes and design the assignments to help players learn as much as possible.

Physics

Using a physics model is not a high priority.

Feature List

◆ Placing exhibits in the museum.
◆ Taking pictures of exhibits.
◆ Making elevators to move from floor to floor.
◆ Generating assignments.
◆ Keeping track of the score and other resources.
◆ Generating the layout of the museum.
◆ Hazards
◆ Other students
◆ Showing information about other students, exhibits, etc.
◆ Fancier elevator controls (Powers of Ten video), maps, etc.
◆ Security robots, including malfunctioning robots.
◆ Hacking robots and cameras.
◆ More story elements.
◆ Multiplayer functionality

Modules

The following classes provide basic functionality for the game and are required.

◆ Class: PCharacter

This class is the character controller for player characters. Moves the character and the main camera from place to place in the museum. Calls the moveToFloor method of elevator objects.

◆ Classes: FloorManager and Floor

Because there will be a lot of floors, they won't all be in use at the same time. Some floors will be separate Unity scenes, but most will be specified in terms of a list of exhibits and positions of the exhibits.

Method: loadFloor(floorId)
The loadFloor method of the FloorManager class will take a floor ID as a parameter and then load the specified floor, either as a Unity scene or a list of objects and locations.

◆ Class: Exhibit

Exhibits can be as simple as a box with an image texture on one side or as complicated as a self-contained mini game. Each exhibit will need to include data and methods that tell the position of the exhibit and how characters can interact with it.

The Exhibit class will need a well-defined interface so that more than one person can work on exhibits at the same time.

◆ Class: Elevator

Elevator objects will move PCs from one floor to another. Each elevator will have a list of floors that it provides access to. Some elevators or floors will be locked until a PC does a certain action.

Method: moveToFloor(floorId)
Closes the elevator door. After a delay (representing the time it takes the elevator to move), calls the loadFloor method of the floor manager and opens the elevator doors.

◆ Classes: AssignmentManager and Assignment

The AssignmentManager class is a puzzle and quest generator and is also a scorekeeper. Based on the exhibits available in the museum it creates assignments.

Optional classes

The following classes might or might not be implemented depending on the size of the group and the amount of time needed for the required classes.

◆ Class: NPCharacter

This class creates and controls robots and other students.

◆ Class: SecurityCamera

This class creates and controls the museum's security cameras.

◆ Class: Map

This class displays selected information about the locations of exhibits and elevators in the museum. It will interact with the floor manager to get information about the exhibits.

◆ Class: StoryManager

This class works with other classes to create interesting stories.

Group

This game is modular and so could work for an individual group or for a bigger group of six or more. Multiple group members can be working on exhibits, floor layouts, assignments, and NPCs at the same time.