Whale Wars is adaptation of a board game. The game forgoes the typical war game mechanics with a simple and unique "pushing" mechanic.
Production Length: 2 Weeks
Released On: March 11, 2012
In-house Engine: Zero Engine
Scripting Language: Python
With GDC 2012 looming around the corner, and actually being right in the middle of development time, I knew that I wouldn't have time to do what I normally do, which is make overly
complicated games, and then scale them down in order to finish them on time. So, I opted for a much smaller scale game that still had strong gameplay mechanics and had plenty of nuances to the
tactics in the game. For this project, I decided to take a board game that I had designed earlier and convert it into a digital title.
While normally, I will try out a few paper prototypes as I build my game, this was the first time I took a pre-existing game converted it into a board game. One of the big things I didn't want to do was go the whole "Board Game on Screen" thing that others games do, but instead look at what was unique about the analog Whale Wars. What were its mechanics that need to be carried over in order to capture the heart and feel of the game? These are the sort of answers that I had to ask while at the same time creating a simple, yet deep Strategy Game.
What makes Whale Wars unique is that even though it is a 2 Player, turn based Competitive Strategy game, it forgoes the typical Strategy Game mechanics like dice, health points and combat altogether. While the game has the Chess inspired objective of defeating the opponents King Unit, the way to do that is different. This game places a large emphasis on positional and environmental strategy, as well as using your Unit's special abilities to their fullest. Units can not be defeated by other Units, instead they must be pushed into objects in the environment to be defeated, or pushed off the edge of the map.
Jonathan Gregoire - Game Design
Started at Ready at Dawn as a Senior Level Designer on an unnanounced project.
Last days at Naughty Dog working on The Last of Us Part II.
Shipped the Last of Us Part II press demo level "Patrol".
Started working at Naughty Dog as a Contract Single Player Level Layout Designer on The Last of Us Part II.
I started doing contract work for a start-up company called MyPad3D that focuses on VR experiences for corporate products.
More interestingly, I have begun to prototype my own card game on the side and have been volunteering with Sunbreak Games on an unannounced product.
With a heavy heart, E-Line Media has shut down the Seattle studio, laying off everyone including myself. I am currently looking for new opportunities.
Began working at E-Line Media again as a Level Designer on an unannounced and untitled game.
Updating my website to reflect the work I did on the Forest Song with Colabee Studios. Unfortunately due to funding issues, I am no longer with them, so I am currently looking for new opportunities.
Lots of new stuff since I last updated. Added in a short comic I made called Old Debts. Also have put up information about my role(s) on Never Alone and Never Alone: FoxTales.
Promoted to Lead Designer on Never Alone: FoxTales at E-Line Media.
Graduated Digipen as a BAGD and with a Cum Laude. Started working at E-Line Media as a Level Designer.
Uploaded a new Beta build of Chained. Also just put up the old builds of the game for anyone interested in our very quick process and progress.
I recently wrote a paper that was published for the IGDA about the benefit of Paper Prototyping. You can read it at this following link: http://newsletter.igda.org/2013/11/30/student-beat-faceoff-the-influences-of-board-games-on-video-games/#!