I Feel Like Dancing (working title, to be released)

Nintendo DS

Position: Art Director, Writer, Background Artist

This was the 3rd game by Overplay for the Nintendo DS. It’s a rhythm game directed to tween girls.

The main character, a very shy girl who dances hiding in her bedroom, is taken in a dance competition around the world by her aunt, who’d been a great dancer in the past too.

I directed a team of three artists in this project.

The look was inspired by 60s and 70s cartoons like The Pink Panther and the original Alvin and the Chimpmunks TV series. They were very vibrant and had a genuinely funny look.

Designing the character, I tried to emphasize body expression. I made her skinny (kid skinny, not fashion model skinny), with long arms and legs and big hands and feet, so the poses and moves would be very expressive and read well.

The writing followed the same philosophy. I tried to give the character a more real child/tween unpretentious attitude, so the player could actually relate to the story. I also tried to focus dancing as something fun that could take you to new places and people.

This project presented a lot of new challenges. One example is the character customization: the player had to be able to change the look of the character’s body AND clothes. A lot of work went into thinking up a system that would allow that and still have the character look good (in any combination of choices the player might make). Another great challenge was that it was my first Nintendo DS game, and there was a lot of technical limits and specifics to deal with. But I love that kind of thing, I think it actually makes you come up with more creative and interesting solutions.

Characters initial concept art:

Background concept art:

And here’s the result ingame:

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