While I'm Away
A downloadable game for Windows
It's Friday morning, and you are getting ready to leave for a two-week winter vacation. In ten minutes, you need to walk out the door to catch a cab to the station. Before you can do that, though, you should prepare your cozy one-bedroom apartment to sit empty.
What you do in this last-minute check can make a big difference in the energy your apartment uses while you're gone … and in how nice it is to come back to. It's not as profound as what you do while you're here, but two weeks is a long time.
Check the rooms, turn things off (or on), spend time cleaning or just 'peace out'. Type the actions you take, and the objects you've thought of will appear on the map. Every action takes some time. When you've spent your 10 minutes, you'll see what a difference your last-minute actions made in your electricity, gas, and water bills, and in your happiness as you leave.
While I'm Away is a prototype made for the 2017 Climate Change Game Jam at Wilfred Laurier University in Toronto, CA.
This game is a mashup of Family Feud and Escape the Room, with some Scribblenauts-type mechanics and a MUD style text-based interaction. The basic goal of the game is to determine what actions you should take in the 10 min before you leave your apartment for a 2 week trip, to best reduce your energy bills and maximize your happiness. The main challenge is that the game is left open-ended in letting you determine what actions to take, leaving room for creativity and memory in determining the best course of action (rather than decided between carefully formulated options).
About the Prototype
You may download the Windows executable or the Game Design Document. The game's source code may be found at https://bitbucket.org/mkgi/airplanedetective .