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Courage

Alfred Golovanov, Edvinas Petrauskas, Josh Williams, Krzysztof Chrostowski, Nikolay Kolev, Joe Cooper, Bradley Stone, James Tatum, Tomas Volkovickas, Aleksandra Wojtyla, Rob Watling,
United Kingdom,  Derby University Of Derby,  Computer Games Modelling And Animation,  January 18, 2016
2 player co-operative game for the Oculus Rift, designed and developed in 12 weeks by 11 people (6 artists and 5 programmers) as a part of our Game Development module at University of Derby.

A child (Alex) is accompanied into a dream state by a spirit wolf named Courage, a manifestation of her own inner courage. As she explores, the pair tackle the child's fears one by one, in a heart-warming tale of friendship, fears and bravery. Each chapter is a new fear, with the environment and mechanics revealing which fear the child will be batling.

The chapter seen here presents the fear of spiders (main) and heights (secondary), and is set at night in a foggy/ spooky pine forest. It contains locations/elements, which may not fit into a normal forest setting, but it is a way of indicating that it's not real and is taking place inside the child's head.
  • Animation
  • Compositing
  • Concept Art
  • Design
  • Generalist (all)
  • Level Design
  • Lighting
  • Modeling
  • Programming
  • Rigging
  • Story Development
  • Texture Painting
  • After Effects
  • Maya
  • Photoshop
  • Unreal 4
  • Zbrush
Epic Games
  • NEXT-GEN GAMING
  • Game of the Year
  • 4809 Page Views
  • 12 Images
  • May 07, 2015
0.09-0:27 - Cutscene of a hospital room where the child is lying unconscious with her dad sitting beside her, she wakes up and quickly loses consciousness again. The room was modelled by Alfred Golovanov using Maya and is rendered inside UE4.

0:29-0:34 - A part of the starting location, with a glimpse of a distant bridge buried in the fog, which is one of the final locations of the chapter. All foliage done by Alfred Golovanov using Maya, foliage shaders done by Edvinas Petrauskas, camp tents modelled and textured by Joe Cooper using Maya/Photoshop with additional support (wind effects on the tent fabric shader) by Edvinas Petrauskas.

0:34-0:37 - Starting location. Shows both Wolf (Courage) and the Child (Alex) running, camera being from the child player's perspective. Both players are playing from different computers, the game is fully networked. The wolf was designed, created and animated by Josh Williams, using Photoshop, Zbrush and Maya. The animations were set up inside UE4 by Bradley Stone.

0:37-0:52 - Shows the Spider Gate, which is the first puzzle. The Gate was modelled by Edvinas Petrauskas using Maya, with additional modelling and texturing work from Alfred Golovanov and Joe Cooper. The child player is seen picking up a lantern, a puzzle item. It was modelled by Joe Cooper using Maya. The panning overlay shader indicating that the item is pickable was done by Edvinas Petrauskas. The child places the lantern on the pedestal at the gate, which allows the Wolf player to use the howl ability to activate it, completing the puzzle. The howl ability was done by Bradley Stone, animation was created by Josh Williams using Maya. The puzzle was designed by Krzysztof Chrostowski and implemented by Tomas Volkovickas and Aleksandra Wojtyla.

0:53-1:00 - Playground location, created by Edvinas Petrauskas using Maya and Substance tools, with additional modelling and texturing work from Alfred Golovanov. The location contains another puzzle, child is seen inserting a crank handle into a machine, which winds it up and makes the merry-go-round spin, which allows them to proceed to the next stage of the puzzle. The puzzle was designed by Krzysztof and implemented by Tomas Volkovickas and Aleksandra Wojtyla.

1:00-1:20 - The players are seen standing by a house (another location), reading a puzzle clue written on the door. Then it shows the interior of the house - the living room and an upstairs room. The exterior and all of the interior of the house was created by Edvinas Petrauskas, using Maya, Zbrush, Substance tools. The cloth parts such as the bed and the curtains were created in Marvelous Designer, cleaned up in Zbrush and then retopologized.

1:20-1:28 - Shows the Wolf player growling at the Spider enemies, which temporarily stuns them / makes them flee. The wolf also changes color to Red, when the child is taking damage. All of it was implemented by Bradley Stone, growling animation was created by Josh Williams using Maya. The spiders were created by Nikolay Kolev - sculpted in Zbrush, retopologized in Maya, textured in Photoshop and animated in Maya. The Spider AI was done by Rob Watling. The child is seen using a Slingshot to attack and kill the spiders, which is one of the abilities the child player has. It was implemented by Bradley Stone and the slingshot was modelled and textured by Alfred Golovanov.

1:29-1:34 - One of the locations created by Krzysztof Chrostowski, modelling was done in Maya and texturing in Photoshop. The point lights/spotlights were set up by him also.

1:34-1:42 - Still the same location, Wolf player is using the howl ability at a spirit object to temporarily reveal it to the Child player, allowing her to walk across. The child was sculpted, retopologized and UV'd by Nikolay Kolev using Zbrush and Maya. Textures, hair planes and materials were created/set up by Edvinas Petrauskas using Substance toolset, Maya, Photoshop. The pebbles underneath the train tracks were created in Zbrush and baked as tiling maps by Edvinas.

1:43-1:48 - The child is interacting with one of the puzzle elements in that location. The levers need to be pulled down in the right order in order to move the train carts which are blocking the paths. The puzzle was designed by Krzysztof Chrostowski and implemented by Tomas and Aleksandra.

1:50-2:03 - Tunnel location, modelled and textured by Krzysztof using Maya and Photoshop.

2:03-2:09 - Child is seen interacting with the gooey spider eggs by shooting at them with a slingshot, which causes them to break apart. No real reason, but to make it feel more immersive and dynamic. Implemented by Tomas / Bradley.

2:10-2:17 - The Spider Queen, which is a boss enemy in this chapter, is seen crawling down the end of the tunnel as the players approach it. The entrance animation was created by Josh Williams using Maya.

2:17-2:27 - Shows the players fighting the Spider Queen. The Queen was designed, sculpted, retopologized, textured and animated by Josh Williams using Zbrush, Maya and Substance tools. The Wolf has to use the Growl ability to scare the queen, which causes it to temporarily lift it's belly. While that is happening the child player has to use the slingshot to shoot at the target, causing the queen to take damage and eventually die. The pulsing belly shader was done by Edvinas Petrauskas.

2:29-end - Players are running across the bridge upon defeating the Spider Queen. The bridge was modelled and textured by Alfred Golovanov, using Maya and Substance tools. Not seen in the trailer, the players get chased by a Ghost Train, forcing them to jump off the end of the bridge, which starts the next chapter involving the fear of Ghosts.

The landscape for the level was created by Edvinas Petrauskas using the UE4 landscape tools to sculpt base heights, and then World Machine was used from there, as well as the general lighting/ mood of the level. All of the foliage in the game was created by Alfred Golovanov. The project management was done by James Tatum, as well as the checkpoint / loading/saving system, and the implementation of Alex's voice.

Additional people involved: Corina Boettger (voice of Alex), Abbie Day (soundtrack), Nathan Knight (animations for Alex).

List of features:

General:
-Full co-operative gameplay
-Full Oculus Rift support
-Checkpoint loading/saving

Child (Alex):
-Slingshot weapon to attack enemies and use in puzzles
-Can pick up and carry puzzle items
-Sanity (health) decreases when overwhelmed by spiders or when separated from the wolf. Regenerates when close to the wolf
-Faints (dies) when the sanity runs out
-Shouts for help when losing sanity
-Head rotates with the camera

Wolf (Courage):
-Can see spirit objects that are invisible to the child
-Howl ability to reveal spirit objects to the child
-Growl ability to scare/stun enemies
-Is a secondary source of light
-Can jump
-Changes color when child is losing sanity
-Head rotates with the camera
-Looks at the child while idling

Enemies:
-Spider Queen boss
-3 types of normal spiders (ranged, melee, and squad spiders)

World:
-6 key locations
-5 puzzles
-Wildlife (small spiders, bats), flee when approached
-Interactive world objects (hanging lantern, football, swings)
-Falling tree event
-Ghost train approaching event

User Interface:
-Full main menu
-Full graphical options
-In-game pause menu
-Network Lobbying
-Credits

Game Modes:
-Network Lan Play
-Split Screen Play

Audio:
-Original soundtrack
-Voice acting for the child
-Forest ambience
-Wolf growl/howl
-NPC sounds

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