Game Projects

Runtime Error

Make bridges with your hands

Team Members: Parker Ramsey, Zhiguo Lai, Keran Sui, Shengzhi Wu

Role: Sound Designer, Game Designer, Producer


  • A two-week AR prototype for the Building Virtual Worlds class (BVW) at CMU.

  • See through the glasses of Meta 2 and save your virtual buddy by building bridges with your hand and fending off evil digital jellyfish!

  • Designed the spiraling level and the bridge-with-hand mechanism.

  • Made the sounds and music for the game!

Runtime Error is my first BVW project, and my first project ever done at the ETC. We were tasked to come up with a prototype using the Meta 2 while following the theme of "helping character A get away from character B".

The Spiraling Level

Based on what we know about AR, we felt like the point of using AR is to let people interact with objects that "feels like" it exists in the 3D reality. In Pokemon Go, creatures do overlay on top of the camera feed, but players wouldn't be able to walk behind them. So, we decided to make a spiraling level that prompts the player to move around it.

The Hand-Bridge

As the theme demanded, we weren't allowed to directly interfere with our protagonist in any way, so we needed some other interactions that would help them. We started out by trying to solve what is probably the simplest puzzle in games: getting over a gap.

Surprisingly, everyone thought of the same concept: making a bridge with our hands. We also really wanted to implement flicking things away. This is how we got to having a bridge-making interaction, and a pushing-away-jellyfish interaction.

Lessons Learned

Lots of lessons learned in this project! While Global Game Jam should technically give me experience in rapid prototyping, this is the one where the deadlines and pressure are real. For example, balancing the quality of code against the effectiveness of it (i.e. presentation) was something that I didn't realize to be so hard to manage.

In terms of hard skills, I learned how to use the FamiTracker, a software dedicated to designing 8-bit chiptunes. I've always loved retro sounds, so this experience was undoubtedly a fun one for me!