ISLANDERS is a relaxing strategy puzzler where you build beautiful settlements on procedurally generated islands. Our goal is to bring the experience of building something beautiful to people who don't want to commit to the time it takes to play classical builder games. Therefore, Islanders focuses on accessibility, short playsessions and a dense audiovisual experience.
Initially, all three of us were equally involved in the prototyping, ideation and system-design process of the game's development. As our vision grew more solid, we started focusing on different aspects of the game, my area of focus being the game's visuals.
My main responsibilities included:
- Designing and maintaining the game's visual style
- Designing & coding the game's procedural color-scheme generator
- Concepting, modelling and texturing the game's 3D-assets
- Sound design and -production
- Gameplay prototyping
- Design and setup of terrain-generator-presets in close cooperation with Jonas Tyroller
These screenshots from the game (unedited except ingame UI was removed) give an impression of the vide variety of environments and conditions players build their cities in. While some of them are of purely visual nature like rainy islands, others have strong impacts on gameplay, like winter-islands where no fields can grow.
I provided all concept art and visual development for the game, ranging from first rough ideation and exploration sketches through quick mockups of the games general look to final concepts for all of the game's buildings.
I designed and modeled over 30 buildings for the final game. For all of them, the main goal was to combine a unique and recognizable shape with interesting gameplay functionality. All buildings also had to be designed in a way that would make for a beautiful, harmonic image when organically put together to a city ingame.
Throughout the development of the game, we made sure to always work with clearly defined workflows and goals. We strictly stuck to a schedule of not working more than 7 hours a day, 5 days a week. During the initial stages of development, we focused on rapid prototyping, lots of research and structured inspiration-gathering such as a visit to the Berlin botanical garden.
I was responsable for all ingame sounds of Islanders, including the game's soundtrack. Most sounds were recorded and produced in my flat, using my own recording equipment.
The team consisted of:
Friedemann Allmenröder (me)
and we were coached by:
I'm really happy with what we accomplished in the short time of 4 months. Islanders is an accessible, entertaining and polished game that combines a surprising amount of depth and replayability with high quality visuals and sound. What makes me especially happy is the fact that we managed to make this game without crunching or working more than 7 hours a day, while staying on schedule during the entire development process. I'm grateful for the opportunity to create this game as part of my university programe together with a team of super talented and motivated people.
If you have any additional questions about the game or how we made it, feel free to shoot me a message!