Galactic Dragon

Initial Idea

Our original game idea before galactic dragon was a game where you have to dodge big black balls.

Yes, this is a true story

We wanted to make a game that was spaced-themed and had a mysterious, adventurous atmosphere. Thus……

Deep Space

What is Deep Space?

Deep space, as we alluded to earlier, is a game where you have to dodge big black balls. It is meant for those who want to enjoy a thrilling experience of dodging big black balls that are coming right at your face. The position and velocity of the balls are all randomized, so you get a different experience every time you play the game!

How to Play:

Gameplay is very simple. You use the arrow keys to move you character and you try to dodge as many big black balls as possible. However, the more big black balls you dodge, the faster the big black balls will become.

Technologies Used:

Deep Space utilizes openGL to create the 3d models of our objects and renders them onto the GLFW window. SDL and SDL mixer is also utilized to achieve sound effects (explosions, and background music).

Shader + Technical Effects:

So far, we have implemented SSAO (screen space ambient occlusion) to generate a sketch-like effect for our game. SSAO effect on our bunny object can be seen below.

SSAO + Bunny = Rad-tastic

We liked this effect so much that we ended up basing our entire game art design around this effect. The grey background adds this voidness to the entire game and thanks to ssao, depth can easily be sensed by the gamer so they have an idea as to how far away each of the black balls are to the character.

We have also successfully added sound effects to the game by utilizing SDL and SDL mixer frameworks. Upon starting the game, the player is greeted by an epic background music score “Time” by Hans Zimmerman. This particular soundtrack was chosen to give the player the notion of his insignificance relative to the universe. Sound effects such as explosions upon hitting a big black ball was also added to enhance the experience.

In the following days we are planning to implement:

  • Particle Effects that will be triggered when the player hits a big black ball and dies.
  • Bounding Boxes so that we know when a big black ball hits the character.
  • Text onto the screen so that we can show how many big black balls the player has dodged so far.


We have it

Our game looks incredibly unique and is indisputably creative. There are layers and layers of deep meaning to every aspect of the game design. To name a few, as we have said earlier, the ssao effect is supposed to give this unique look to the game where everything looks like a sketch. In addition, the gray foggy background is supposed to give the impression of infinite space and the feeling of inevitable doom. The player is then left feeling insignificant resulting to them asking themselves the philosophical questions that we have cleverly planted inside the design of the game. “Why am I dodging these big black balls?” “What are these big black balls?” “Where am I?” “Who am I?” “What is the meaning of my existence?”


In our final days, we have improved upon our game of Deep Space by adding new game mechanics and a new overall game theme. As the name of the game suggests, the theme is dragons …… and space!

Dragons and Space

Why Change the theme?

We changed the theme because dodging big black balls was just not very interesting. In addition, it was very hard to identify the original model using the camera position that we defined. All in all, we decided to go with a cooler, more interesting theme: dragons and space! We changed the original big black ball obstacles to be detailed asteroids and the main model to be a dragon. We added rotation to the dragons wings to give the illusion that it is being animated. We left the overall fogginess that we got from our occlusion effect because it completely defined the design of our game and it made gameplay much more interesting. Due to the fog, the player cannot see when the asteroids are being generated and therefore must anticipate where the asteroids are coming from.

Fog in space? Who cares! Its dragons in space!!

New Mechanics:

Some of the new features that we added are:

  • Camera tilts as you move left and right
  • New sound effects (dragon roaring, speech on death)
  • Text on screen that shows how many asteroids you dodged
  • Added different screen modes (fog mode, SSAO mode, debug mode, rainbow mode)


  • Arrow Keys : moves dragon in direction of arrow key
  • [A] Roar : Dragon will roar!
  • [T] (SSAO) Toggle : Toggles screen between fog mode and SSAO mode
  • [Shift + T] (Cartoon) Toggle: Toggles screen between cartoon mode and (fog, SSAO modes)
  • [D] (Debug) : Must be pressed from cartoon mode; when pressed wireframes for the bounding boxes will be shown.
  • [L] (Rainbow) Toggle: Toggles screen between rainbow mode and (fog, SSAO modes)
  • [R] Reset : Resets the game

Screen Modes:

Fog Mode:

Original Screen Mode

SSAO mode:

SSAO only effect. The Occlusion factor was high which lead to SSAO making objects look grey-ish

Rainbow Mode:

Position of fragment on screen determines RGB

Cartoon Mode:

Cartoon Mode (Edge Detection Coeff = 0.1)
Cartoon Mode (Edge Detection Coeff = 0.6)

Debug Mode:

Wire Frames of Bounding Boxes (RED = Collision, Green = Non Collision)

Depth mode:

Shader + Techical Effects:

  1. SSAO Shader Effect
  2. Toon Shading
  3. Bounding boxes + Collision Detection
  4. Sound Effects
  5. On-screen Text


Our game definitely has a very original and artistic design. Using inspiration from great modern artists such as Andy Warhol and Jackson Pollock, we created a very minimalistic yet aesthetically pleasing game. The SSAO coupled with the deep fog effect creates a very mysterious atmosphere that cannot be summed up in mere words. One cannot experience such a grand, epic experience without actually playing the game, so go play the game.



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