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Cat Sanctuary is a single-player tycoon, digital pet game for PC, balancing aspects of money management as well as pet care. You are the owner of a newly opened cat shelter who must take in stray cats, treat them for any potential illnesses, and care for them until it is time to find them a forever home in which they will leave the shelter. As the game progresses, upgrades can be purchased, and the process becomes more automated.

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Grimalkin Games

Grimalkin Games was my team for my third year professional project. Our brief was given to us by the fantastic Futurlab.

The brief was to create a game that simulated managing a cat rescue centre.

Demo

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Team Members

Euan Gaul

Team Lead / Designer

Colin Cairney

Producer / Artist

Dominik Frankowski

Lead Programmer

Oliver Hazell

Programmer

Natalie Wilson

Artist

Robert Begg

Artist

Ruaridh Newbery

Artist

My Role

        My Role within the team was UI and Minigame programmer; if it was 2D, it was my responsibility. As the development progressed, we unfortunately had to cut the other two minigames planned for the demo. As well as the inspection minigame, my responsibilities included all the UI elements' functionality across the whole game including the menus. 

     Towards the end of development, I took on the extra role of maintaining the main build for the demo. This mainly consisted of sorting through merge conflicts on Github and bug squashing. 

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Lessons Learnt

      The development of Cat Sanctuary Simulator was tough. Development began smoothly in January 2020; however by March, lockdown proved a unique challenge.

      As the scope was quickly reigned in, I worked on polishing the inspection game rather than spreading the work across all three proposed minigames. I also took a bigger interest in learning about the importance of UI and how a programmer can improve it.

     If I were to do the project again, I would certainly have spent more time focussing on the one inspection minigame in the earlier stages rather than spreading my effort across functionality that ended up being scrapped. I definitely learned an importance in prioritising work that is integral to the game and leaving polish until later.

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