Onlookers watch a student play a video game at the game development grad show at Nawapon on April 12. Game development students were on hand to show players how the games work.

Students in Algonquin College’s game development program showcased their final projects at Nawapon on Wednesday afternoon.

Seven projects were displayed on tables throughout the room with a diverse selection of games to try out. The students who worked on them are soon-to-be graduates of the game development program. Games shown at the event incorporated the use of VR technology, big screen monitors and laptop computers.

Project Artemis is a game developed entirely for use with VR technology. It depicts an immersive simulation of NASA’s upcoming Artemis space program. During the game, players suit up at the International Space Station and board a spacecraft before being sent off to the moon.

Alex Achorn, developer of Project Artemis, discussed what happens in the game.

“You board the ship, do a pre-launch sequence, and (then) you land on the moon,” Achorn said. “We have three different missions you do while you’re on the moon.”

Another video game at the event, Axel ‘n’ Oddol, is a 3D platformer collect-a-thon inspired by the works of Banjo-Kazooie and Super Mario 64. Players carry a character called Axel that can be used as a tool to progress through the game. Axel can be used as a platform when climbing walls, thrown as a boomerang to collect hard-to-reach objects and as a weapon against enemies.

Kayla Grant, a member of the development team, said the final product was different from the group’s original vision.

“We had something very different in mind beforehand,” Grant said. “But as things sort of changed in terms of the members we were going to receive, so too did the design vision.”

Grant said the group experienced significant challenges during the development process.

“I actually ended up having five weeks off due to a combination of surgery and COVID,” Grant said. “We were down a person for a long time. So we ended up having to cut out a lot of content that we had planned to have in.”

Those who missed the event can check out all of the games showcased here.