Scoot is a 2D side-scrolling platformer game that I developed with Eric Svitek over a span of 6 months with the goal of creating a simple video game from scratch. The game's titular character is a turtle inspired by the Koopa Troopas of Super Mario Brothers.

While Eric worked on coding and level design, I focused on the story, art direction, character design, sprite animations, and play testing. I spent a lot of time developing a cohesive, recognizable visual language and color palette. Eric and I worked together to create balanced game mechanics; making the levels navigable and the characters easy to control.

Setting the Scene

The story begins with the discovery that the evil Widget Corp has built a factory at the edge of The Forest. Widget Corp is capturing innocent forest creatures and using Happiness Harvesters, or HAHAs, to sap the creatures of their joy and power their plant.

HAHA and Forest Creatures
Meet Scoot!

Scoot may be a turtle, but that doesn't mean he can't move! Scoot can run, jump, crawl, slide, and throw his shell to attack enemies. Everyone is counting on him to infiltrate Widget Corp, rescue the forest creatures, and shut down the factory!

Scoot will encounter many different enemies on his journey, each with a unique fighting style that he must overcome. One of these enemies is the game's first boss, Snag. Once a wise forest guardian, Snag was captured by Widget Corp and lost all his happiness. Now all he can do is wreak havoc on The Forest.

Scoot Sprite Sheet
Snag Sprite Sheet
Gameplay Excerpt
The Process

Since I produced all the sprites, I developed a set of standards for each image in order to preserve the game's strong visual language and streamline my workflow. For efficiency's sake, I sometimes borrowed from old sprites to make more, but this diagram shows how I would create a new sprite from scratch.

© Dan Grove or respective copyright holders