The quintessential murder mystery is timeless. Everyone wants to know who did it, right? So it’s no surprise that a whodunit is the theme of the first video game launched by the Game Development and Design class at the Miami Animation and Gaming International Complex (MAGIC) at Miami Dade College.
What is remarkable is that the final product, named Void, impressed gaming giant Alienware so much that they decided to publish the game on their Alienware Arena site, which has global viewership, offers free gaming content and is free to join.
“It’s a huge success story,” said Mauricio Ferrazza, chair at MAGIC. “Alienware created a page on their website for MDC’s MAGIC, and the game is there for download.” To be sure, Void isn’t your grandma’s version of the classic board game Clue. Welcome to the future, where this murder mystery includes an interactive spaceship, uber-cool alien, human and cyborg characters, and a game board (in this case, ship) that blows up if you’re overzealous in your accusations against crew members.
“My team and the support staff at MDC were integral to this,” said MDC alumnus Josh Field, the MAGIC class of 2018 graduate who conceived and led the project. “It wasn’t a one-person thing, and it wouldn’t have happened if everyone didn’t pull together the way they did.”
Nearly 30 people, including 24 students and a few professors and mentors (including Leah Hoyer, VP of creative at Telltale Games), worked together over two semesters to bring Void to life. The teams stayed busy writing code, designing features, creating visual aspects, writing character dialogues, developing the user interface and testing the game throughout the process.
“MAGIC really simulates a production environment and all the nuances that come with that,” Field said. “It gave us insight that classes alone wouldn’t have given us.”