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Monochrome Beauty

An innovative, narrative-heavy serious game surrounding a psychosocial issue

Before going any deeper into anything, let just make a quick disclaimer right from the outset:
This game is not exactly a cash grab game.
Please do explicitely not join the team, if your main goal is just to make loads of money.
Neither do we have a massive budget, nor is the main goal of the game to maximize earnings; though we do care about proper marketing.
In the end, we are simply a small, enthusiastic team mostly working on the project in their spare time,
yet driven by a vision and sick of seeing the same types of games over and over again.
Yes we are idealists, but we are also realists ... organized, reliable, know our craft and have industry experience.
So once again: If any of the above is a dealbreaker to you, please don't join us, as these things are not negotiable.

If this - and please excuse the language - haven't pissed you off already: Congratulations, this is where the interesting part begins! So let's cut right to the chase, shall we?

A sneak peek at the game in question

(Screenshots may appear too dark or light, depending on the display.)

"Despite the late hour, Arifa, a friend of yours, invites you to her apartment.
She is sitting in the dark, and – noticeably agitated – seems to be in need of someone to talk to.
As Arifa begins to recount the events of the day, you put yourself in her position and try to live through her experiences yourself,
slowly unveiling more and more about the psychosocial problem she is facing,
the ramifications coming with it … and why all of that extends far beyond just her."

Monochrome Beauty expresses a socio-philosophical thesis,
presents the current and ideal state and examines the latter for feasibility and meaningfulness,
ultimately leading to a recommendation for action based on the resulting ethical evaluation.
It attempts to do so without being overly preachy or moralising, but by embedding these points into a dramatic, self-explanatory narrative, to not only convey the mental side of this issue, but also provide further undistorted sensory information, in order to have a better understanding of the impacts in play.
For this purpose, many of the game’s features are based on the idea of maximising the amount of information to impart and the quality of doing so.
These features include:

• Almost no extra-diegetic components, instead partially even an extension of the game to reality
• Shifts in core mechanics, depending on the emotional state of the protagonist
• Context-sensitive gameplay in synergy with the plot and not just as an onerous vehicle to drive the latter
• Specific changes in perspective, in order to maximise empathy and immersion

The role up for grabs

Okay, let's assume we piqued your interest. What would your job on the team look like?
Well, being a small team of freelancers also has its perks: For the most part, you can work on your own, when you want to, where you want to.
Hierarchies are almost non-existent, work would be coordinated through Discord meetings, group channels and joint production data.
Your job would be that of an animator and mainly comprise the following:

  • Required: Rigging an existing human model with given joints and bones
  • Required: Producing few, but realistic body animations using the above mentioned rig
  • Required: Producing few, but realistic face animations using the above mentioned rig
  • Ideally: Altering existing animations slightly
  • Ideally: Collaborating with the designer, to set up and implement the character animation system in Unreal Engine 4

One last thing in this section that should probably be mentioned: Working in the low- to no-budget zone can sadly also be a slippery slope sometimes.
In the past we had two incidents of people leaving mid-project with no proper previous communication.
It is due to events like this that we value qualities like reliability, perseverance and eagerness to improve very highly,
potentially even more so than skill alone. Please keep that in mind when making your decision whether to work with us or not.

What else is there to be said?

The initial research for the project started in early 2017.
A number of interruptions and a few hundred pages of notes, concepts, tests, drafts, and the like later there is a screenplay,
as well as an in-engine (UE4) prototype that, besides the level layout and all the core mechanics, also includes some more refined level design sections and advanced gameplay systems.

With an estimate of a couple of hours per week, the main work of the advertised job is estimated to be doable in a few months,
depending on how much time you are able and willing to devote, possibly even quicker.
The intended period for this to happen is somewhere between August 2019 and April 2020 (adabtable to your personal schedule).

Please note that, as of the writing of this ad, the project has no external funding or budget.
All of the spendings so far where financed by personal savings from the core team.
I'm confident that if money is not your main driving force, we are able to reach a financial agreement,
but once again, please don't expect huge sums.
That obviously does not mean we don’t appreciate every little contribution that goes into making such a game – we definitely do.
It is just that unfortunately, surprise, there are simply no resources for much more than what we can offer.
Still (or rather additonally),working on Monochrome Beauty could not only be an interesting experience and enhance your portfolio,
but also bring in new friends and industry contacts,
and possibly even lead to building up a reputation and/or being part of an award-winning game.

So ... What's next?

In case that after reading all of this, you are still interested in working with us, you seem to be either a maniac or a visionary, possibly both. Either way, please don’t hesitate any longer and contact us at!

Just go ahead, even if you don’t fit every of the listed responsibilities, as qualities like reliability, perseverance and eagerness to improve can more than outweigh skill alone. The deadline for applying is the 29th of August, but the recommendation would be to apply as soon as possible.

We are looking forward to hear from you, so we can have a relaxed, non-binding chat, get to know each other and hopefully work together!

To Apply

(See above.)

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