Family Village
 
Family Village was a Facebook game I worked on as a contractor with Alpine Studios. My position was Technical Designer, and my responsibility was to manage the game assets and adjust game balancing. The art team would provide the animation frames to me in a layered Photoshop file, that I would lay out into Flash animations that could be used in game (with various animation loops cued up with ActionScript calls for the programmers to call). In addition to that I maintained the Game economy database using SQL. Each new asset we added needed a record to be recognized. That database contained the price for each item (game money), the rewards for the player, the required skill levels, object footprint, and more. The game had over 1000 items, and a complex economy of purchases and rewards.
 
When I joined the team, I was one of only two people with previous game design experience. the other being the owner of Alpine Studios, Les Pardew. Les has over 30 years working in games, and it was great to talk design with him (he is also an EXTREMELY talented artist/animator). Being the only two with design experience, it was our responsibility to take a rough idea (Cityville, but with real ancestry...) and put actual gameplay behind it. The idea itself was somewhat dry and boring, like digging through Ancestry.com with This was a bit of a challenge, but after studying other Facebook games and economies we made some good improvements to make the game more enjoyable. Some of the key things implemented were a new character editor and leveling system, as well as a coin collecting mini-game which allowed you to double the amount of rewards you collected by utilizing some quick mouse maneuvering.
 
I left Alpine Studios after wrapping up the public beta launch (Summer 2011). Unfortunately, the game servers were taken down in February of 2013 due t lack of funding from the production studio, Funium LLC
Technical Designer