Return of Aetheria

Return of Aetheria is an Alternate Reality game built for conventions that I worked on from January 2014 to June 2015. The game is a mixture of digital and analog gaming built during a class at IUPUI. I was apart of the last 2 years out of the 3 that it was shown off. For the first year my role was Music Composer/Sound Engineer and Sponsorship Relations. My Second year involved me being a Gameplay Programmer. You can check out more about the project on the Return of Aetheria website.

Return of Aetheria: War of Realms

The first Return of Aetheria project I worked on was ‘War of Realms’, the second game in the series. I worked on this project from January 2014 to June 2014. My primary role was Music Composer/Sound Engineer for the videos we produced. I soon also picked up the role of Sponsorship Relations that involved contacting previous and potential new sponsors to supply prizes for our game. I hadn’t had a PR role before so I had to learn quickly some of the proper ways to find and contact potential sponsors as well as how to work with them to support both sides needs.

I ended up composing a few pieces of music that was used both during the second and third year of Aetheria. I also helped mix and edit the audio for a few interview videos that we created.

Here you can listen to my theme for ROA as well as a video I edited the audio for.

Return of Aetheria: War of Realms was played at the 2014 IndyPopCon with over 200 people signing up and playing during the 3 day convention. We had a few players that played all 3 days for most of their time at the convention.

Return of Aetheria: Rise of Nether

The second Return of Aetheria project I worked on was ‘Rise of Nether’, the third and final game in the series. I worked on it from January 2015 to June 2015. My role for this iteration was as a Gameplay Programmer. I was tasked with creating 5 mini-games that would be played on a 4k table during the conventions. I was required to create the game in Action Script 3 so I decided to use the Flixel framework. I managed to get the background art rendering in 4k while the game was played with 2K art assets. I also created an alternative control scheme using Phidget sliders and touch pads.

We showed off 2 of the mini-games as a demo at the 2015 Indianapolis Comic Con. The two games showed off were Shield Defense and Red Rush. The first is a 4 player Pong like game where players must deflect fire balls away from their resources while collecting power ups. Red Rush is a take on “red light green light” where players must press their button as fast as possible when their orb is lit up. Here is a small clip of the start of Shield Defense.

A video posted by Return Of Aetheria (@retrnofaetheria) on

I also created 3 more mini-games for final game debut at 2015 IndyPopCon. I created Dueling Cannons, a 2 vs 2 ship battle game. Both teams controlled cannons that they could aim and shoot at the enemy ship. If the cannon balls collided in mid arm they would cancel each other out. Archery Showdown was also a 2 vs 2 archery game where each player controlled an archer that they could more horizontally across the screen. The players then could charge shots up and shoot at each other. The longer they charged the shot the faster it was. For the final mini-game I created a bullet-hell type boss game. The boss had 4 different shot patterns: a straight fire ball shot, a rotating shot, a pulsing visibility shot, a split shot, and a shot that combined all the shots. The boss had shields rotating around himself that showed what shots where going to be fired. Players worked together to fire arrows at the boss and kill him.

Though the mini-games where built to be played with an alternate control scheme on a large screen table I modified the game to be played on any computer. You can download the mini-games here.