A Vertical Shooter

JONAH HAMMEN

Game Design is a popular major here at University of Wisconsin-Stout, but some students like to code regardless of whether or not it’s for a class. Such is the case with Jaden Schneider, a freshman computer science major who’s taking things entirely into his own hands and making a game from scratch. It all started back in early February when Schneider rediscovered some long-lost ideas for a platforming game. “I came across my docs for an old VR game idea I had from I dunno when and thought it would make a cool PC game. It was literally just a bunch of notes, so I basically started from scratch making this version,” he explained.

Schneider’s original concept was to create a vertically-oriented experience in VR with gameplay centered around scaling walls, sneaking past enemies and making your way across treacherous, sky-scraping platforms. Now, he’s introducing weapons into the mix and creating a first-person shooter. He’s achieving this by using a number of different programs: Visual Studio for code writing, Blender for model building and Unity 3D to combine all his assets into a playable, visual format.

Almost all first-person shooter (FPS) games are linear with up-and-down movement being very limited, but Schneider is turning that tradition on its head with his unique idea. With visuals reminiscent of classic Nintendo 64 games and a wide array of guns, the currently unnamed project will be one of the first non-linear FPS’s since LawBreakers in 2017.

“This game is about stealth. You’re gonna be climbing and dodging a bunch instead of being on the offensive like traditional FPS’s where you’re doing lots of the shooting yourself. The climbing mechanic and the moving platforms have been the hardest parts to implement so far, especially when you put those two things together! And it’s not like there’s any games I can use for reference when I run into issues; this is pretty unique in its genre.”

Due to how early it is in the entire game-making process, Schneider said that he didn’t have a concrete idea yet of when it will be released. He only knows that he’ll be putting it on a handful of popular online game stores, such as Steam or Green Man Gaming, when it does.