Project Details

Mini Open-World

This “cozy alchemist” prototype takes place during the winter and features quests that challenge the player to solve deduction-based puzzles.

The project is intended to be small-scope and provide a gameplay experience between 40-60 minutes.

  • Maya for modeling the blockout
  • Unreal 5 for playtesting and scripting
  • Assets: ALS Character, Narrative by Reubs, Ultra Dynamic Sky by Everett Gunther, AGR Pro
Premise

Cozy Crafting meets The Green Knight

The player arrives at a small river island as the newly appointed potions expert for the region. Inspired by the German holiday Fastnacht and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, the game is set in a world where Winter does not simply end, it must be stopped. Every year, the tribes of the region send their best hero on a journey to bring an end to winter. However, the player is not the hero, but they can help by crafting potions that will ensure the hero has a safe journey.

Points of Interest

Winter Island Exploration

The island features several points of interest where the player can discover new crafting ingredients, collectibles, and NPCs. This includes:

  • The Main House
  • The Cauldron
  • The Mailbox
  • The Warden Tree
  • North Troll Statue
  • South Troll Statue
  • South Cave
  • Fairy Ring
  • Always Spring Grove
Main Quest

Help the Hero

Quests are given to the player via mail. The first letter the player receives in the mail sets up the Main quest. The player is informed that the region is sending its greatest hero to bring an end to Winter, and the player must do their part by crafting potions for the hero to take on their journey. This first letter contains some in-game locations that the hero will be passing through on their journey. The player will have to consult an in-game map of the area along with reading additional letters to begin to deduce which potions will be best to send the hero.

Side Quests

Crafting Potions

Side quests are similar to the Main quest, but only require one potion to complete them. These quests encourage the player to explore the island and discover new ingredients. They also tie into overall progression by giving the player important clues for completing the Main quest. Take a look below at some examples.

Bedroom Shenanigans

NARRATIVE:

A letter arrives urging swiftness and privacy. Leif and his partner got caught up in the moment, and now the partner is chained to the bedpost. Having lost the key, Leif requests the player’s aid.

OBJECTIVE:

Craft a potion of Dissolve Metal, and deliver it to the mailbox.

PROGRESSION:

Teaches the player about the Dissolve Metal potion, which can be used on the lock in the basement to discover new recipes and ingredients.

Forelorned and Feathered Friend

NARRATIVE:

Henrik is desperate to cheer up a raven named Soot, his best friend and travel companion. Henrik believes if he could talk with the raven, then he could find out what’s been troubling his friend.

OBJECTIVE:

Use the Dissolve Metal potion to unlock the door in the basement. Craft a potion of Many Tongues, and deliver it to the mailbox.

PROGRESSION:

Teaches the player about the potion of Many Tongues. This potion can be used to speak with NPCs. It is also an important potion to send to the hero.

A Spirit Taking Hold

NARRATIVE:

Agatha writes that she has returned from Sniffles Bay but fears she may have brought home an evil spirit. She requests a potion to help protect her before the spirit takes hold forever.

OBJECTIVE:

The recipe is incomplete. The player must use a potion of many tongues to speak with the Warden Tree, a spirit living on the island. The Warden Tree then tells the player the missing ingredient. Once a potion for Protection Against Evil Spirits is crafted, the player must deliver it to the mailbox.

PROGRESSION:

Sniffles Bay is a location that the hero will pass through. Therefore, the hero will need a potion to protect against the evils spirits inhabiting Sniffles Bay.

Scripting

Blueprints in Action

For this project, I implemented several Unreal marketplace assets and created many of my own blueprints.

  • Crafting potions
  • Time-of-day events
  • Interaction system
  • Doors and barriers
  • Mailbox and letters
  • Music triggers
Documentation

Planning with Miro

While working on this project, I used Miro to help plan ideas and stay on course. I also used Pinterest for reference collecting, and Google Docs for writing narrative content.