Canary is a VR world where guests play as a canary and help a poor woman escape from her evil husband’s control.

Role: Game Designer/ Sound Designer
Team Size: 5
Development Duration: 2 week

Design Process

Narrative Design

The whole dialogue is here.

This was a VR game that focused on story. During brainstorming, I proposed the idea of telling the story from a perspective other than human. The reason is that secrets can be told from the human characters because they would regard an animal as a forever secret keeper. From all kinds of animals, we chose canary as our main character. We want to use music as a special trigger to push the story forward, and bird, especially canary, is the perfect animal for that.

I was responsible for coming up with the story. I wrote a story in which the canary witnesses a poor woman who suffered a lot from her husband. I designed dialogues and animations to make players feel sad for the female protagonist. Player, as the canary, needs to solve a very simple puzzle with the wind chimes in the canary’s cage, which opens the gate and helps the heroine escape.

combine Story and gameplay

The biggest chanllenge we faced during the development of this game was combininig story and gameplay tightly. We wanted to tell a linear story in an interactive way. The interaction should be driven by the story and reinforce it.

In the beginning of the story, I wrote about how the heroine tries to protect the canary, which is the player. With the animation from our artist, it has a great emotion impact to connect the player with the female protagonist. Later, I wrote about the male protagonist using wind chimes in the room to open the gate of the house. He thought that no one knows about the secret, but player, as a canary, witnesses everything. That was the first reason for us to set the main character as an animal. Then, player will be guided by the female protagonist’s dialogue to try and replay the melody.

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