‘Casual’ Game Concept #1: Bus Run: Alien Armageddon

A 2D side scroller that takes you on a perilous journey through the Nevada desert in an attempt to stop an alien invasion.

An alien that resembles a Cactus has crash landed on Earth with the intent of destroying it by stripping the planet of it’s natural resources. You are a school bus driver from Las Vegas. And unfortunately for you, this deadly foe has crash landed on your bus. To save the world you must find the fabled Area 51, avoid the evil minions besieging their masters call and stop it from implanting onto the ground.

Taking into consideration the lack of violence that can be implemented into a side scrolling driving simulation where the player has to avoid object and enemies, and the childlike nature to the theme of the game, i would have to consider the audience to be around the ages of 7-15.

The game itself will be a 2D side-scrolling game with potentially 3D elements. The object of the game is to avoid miscellaneous items onscreen to make it to the end of the level. Although it is a casual game, there does need to be some level of challenge to make the game interesting. The idea then is to implement collectible gas canisters that increase a steadily decreasing gas bar. The buttons themselves will be easy to use as the only ones necessary are for navigation.

Casual Game criteria
Typically, casual games have no set definition. The games themselves are occasionally defined by the types of players that play them. So when approaching conceptualizing a casual game the only individual of whom can effectively give you a purposeful criteria is yourself in this instance. Here is my brief take on how to define a casual game:

  • How strenuous is it? – Being a ‘strenuous’ game would indicate a level of complexity and/or commitment a player would have to uphold to play it. A casual game therefore can simply be defined as how a casual gamer themselves would operate. For instance, a casual gamer is an individual of whom has or spends less time playing games and so therefore casual gamers for the most part would look for games that can be played in moderation with less strenuous implications. That isn’t to say that these casual games couldn’t be played on a ‘Hardcore’ basis it just determines the type of game itself.
  • How therefore is the game i’m conceptualizing a casual game? – In itself the game is essentially a small-scale side scroller that’s designed to be a Flash game. There’s a lack of complexity to it because there would only be the navigational buttons required to use it.

Initial Sketch


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