New Heart


New Heart is a light, whimsical 2D game about a traveller looking for a home. It was showcased at the Digital Media Showcase 2016, York University Digital Media Exhibition 2016, Digifest 2016, and Level Up! 2016.



Role: Game Design, Game Development, Illustration, Animation
Tools Used: Unity, Photoshop, Yarn
Final Prototype: Unity Game



Project Context

New Heart revolves around you, a lonely traveller, trying to befriend everyone in a town. The game was created for my thesis project in my senior year of university. The challenge was to create an interactive project. I decided to challenge myself by creating my first game, not knowing just how long the road ahead would be, as I would be the sole programmer, designer, artist, and animator!


The player interacts with in-game characters by talking to them, which opens up puzzles that need to be solved in order to win that character's affection.



I had no prior experience or knowledge of a game engine and decided to learn how to use Unity. My previous experience with coding languages such as Objective-C and Java would help me learn how to code C#, the native language of Unity, quite quickly. Weaving together a working dialogue system, however, would prove to be the biggest challenge. I wanted the game to flow with user choice -- meaning the dialogue tree the user had with NPCs would be extremely complex.


Thanks to the help of Yarn, a dialogue editor, visualizing the conversation routes became a lot easier. Due to time limitations, I was forced to simplify the routes of all the characters in the game. Even so, I still wanted to incorporate commentary on society, particularly ostracism, and what it means and takes to become accepted as one of a group.

Illustration and Animation

As the sole creator of the game, I also created all art and animations. The goal was to create a whimsical and dream-like world, similar to a fairy-tale. Below you'll see the background art, character designs, and game scenes I made!