Red Dawn


Red Dawn, 2008

Flash Game > Click Here to Play
The Arrow Keys are to turn, accelerate, brake. Also the subject of an animation.

Team: Circular Strife

My Roles: Director, Designer, Writer, 2D Artist
Collaborators: Matthew Louie, Lawson Lim, Sammpa V. Raski, Daniel Jagger


Based on my concept, Red Dawn is an action puzzle game created in Flash. Each level featured a different environment, background music and challenges – including enemy NPCs – that changed from level to level. Gameplay was inspired by Snake: the player dragged chains of explosives around buildings to demolish them: avoiding objects to preserve the chain until it grows long enough to encircle a target building.

Story was conveyed through cut-scenes and in-game radio chatter (much like the Star Fox series) about a demolitions company hired to demolish an complex of airborne ruins . . . amidst shady background dealings.

Ultimately we required more time to fully complete many of the later levels and incorporate chatter and the like, but all central gameplay mechanics were included.


Awarded an A+ grade, our game was ranked 2nd place among 15+ class projects by a guest panel of judges from Electronic Arts‘ local Burnaby studio.



The Idea
As most of the strongest games have a solid, central mechanic that is smooth, polished and fun (much like the jumping in Mario), so that was my main goal in the design. I came up with the concept of gathering bombs in a chain behind the player, navigating obstacles and collecting bombs until the chain was judged long enough to surround a building to trigger the chain and destroy it.

Much like Snake, colliding with the tail involuntarily has consequences: in our game, looping back into the chain of bombs detonates them, and if premature then the player is forced to collect a new chain.

You begin to see many similar mechanics across games, the metaphor in which they are implemented can change much. Giving a context to each action and reward for the player only further cements their immersion into the experience. The interface, levels (Jobs) and rewards (Payment) all were designed to follow the metaphor.