GA Spring 2023 – The Gnoming

Welcome to The Gnoming!

Prepare to protect your ritual site greenhouse from pesky enemies trying to stop you…

Swing your trusty old hoe, plant defensive plants and stand your ground through endless hordes of enemies as they try to take down you and your greenhouse!

The idea
At the season start, we bounced some ideas off of each other. Some of us had ideas for more casual and relaxed games, some had ideas about horror game elements. We ended up going down a sort of a middle path, landing on a Plants VS Zombies inspired tower defense game with some slight atmospheric horror elements. The team had some differing ideas of how to go about with the whole tower defense mechanic, and even with that we ended up reaching a middle of the road type of an agreement. We moved more towards an open arena instead of a small and tight grid, but still kept that horizontal directionality instead of going to a full 360 arena around the defendable point.

Early development screenshot

Even before the project started, we talked a little about the upcoming graphics workload, and ended up deciding to go for a retro-inspired direction with a downscaled resolution and forced limited color palette through a custom LUT. While the idea allowed for fast work and quick iteration, it came with its own set of challenges, as visibility suffered greatly during the darker periods of the game, which were supposed be the highlight of the entire game. In the end we managed to work around these issues, but they still persist to this day to some degree.

Working with very simple lowpoly models helped us to create required assets a little faster than what we would’ve been able to do compared to, for example, more realistic graphics, which was another topic of discussion in the beginning of the project. We ended up sticking with it, and while some of us had slightly different styles of work, it blends together thanks to the limited color palette and downscaled resolution!

The whole gnome theme came from the casual game ideas, those being more towards something like Stardew Valley, and so we just ran with the idea and ended up sticking with it. A garden gnome defending his home sounded like a cool idea at least!

The Result
Despite a bit of a rocky development, the end result ended up being a relatively polished experience, although we’re still a little unsure about the actual balance of the game. We’re all proud to present the it to the world either way!

Download the game from here!

The game project was created by our lovely team Bluescreen:

Lauri Vahosalmi – Artist

Hannes Karttunen – Artist

Eetu Vartiainen – Artist 

Teemu Herrala – Programmer

Jesse Vuorela – Programmer

Inka Harilainen – Programmer 

GA Spring 2023 – Magigun


Our game is a wave based first person shooter with an eldritch horror flavours. The player is constantly pursued by waves of eldritch monsters and all the player has to protect themselves are a couple guns powered up by magic. The player has to survive as many waves as possible, all the while the game gets harder over time. The player can find and purchase other guns and there is even a helpful merchant who can help the player upgrade their arsenal. The player has to combine constant movement to avoid enemies with fast kills to end the round before the timer runs out.

Progress of the project 

The inspirations for our game were Doom and COD Zombies. First we created the basic mechanics for a first person shooter game with a basic level. The level evolved over time and became much smaller but also more interesting with different routes and so on. The enemies are incredibly basic but about midway through we added our first implementation of a Utility AI to make adding considerations for different actions way easier and more flexible. Our artists were hard at work for all of the project with the models and animations (with multiple iterations over time due to feedback). After the midway point we had most of the mechanics down but we were still missing the flow and direction of the game so we worked on that the rest of the way. We reworked mechanics like the wave system to spawn in a more continuous stream of enemies instead of a fixed amount to keep the pace up until the end of round. By the end of the project we finally found a direction for our game and are satisfied with the result.


Link to game


Team members

Eino KammonenProgrammer
Tuomas AntikainenProgrammer
Simo KontiokorpiProgrammer / Artist
Ville NurmiArtist
Leevi OksanenArtist
Johanna SaukkonenUI Artist / SFX / Project lead
Jani RämöMusic

Games Academy Spring 2020 – Ragnarough

Ragnarough invites you to battle your friends for the glory of Valhalla!

In this fast paced local multiplayer game you will throw various objects and punches at other players to be the last Viking standing. Drink from the golden pint to gain power ups! Best your opponents and be crowned the Champion!


  • Players: 2-4
  • Controller and keyboard support
  • Various throwables: barrels, bottles and stools
  • Golden pint power-ups: Health, Speed, Power, Shield Up
  • Graphics: Very Nice
  • Fun: Yes

Download the game from!



Crash Bash’s Crate Crush served as the main inspiration for this project. We wanted to make something fun to play with friends, and the stylized and colorful visual style was selected to reflect this. Using Crate Crush as a reference we were able to keep the core mechanics simple and the scope was easy to manage; we were able to implement pretty much everything we wanted, while also having time to add some polish.

The development ran quite smoothly thanks to a dedicated project manager, assigned tasks for the team members, weekly meetings, and through active team communication. Overall the entire team put in great dedication for this project, and we’re pretty proud of the result.

We hope you will like it!


  • Tommi Mäkeläinen: coding, UI, project management
  • Pasi Mäkitalo: coding
  • Pauliina Lahti: coding
  • Beya Staaf: Concept art, texturing
  • Mikko Laitinen: 3D modeling, sound effects
  • Antton Lehtinen: music

Games Academy Spring 2020 – Steel Castle

Hi everyone! We’re from team Left & Right and our game is called Steel Castle.

Steel Castle is a puzzle-platformer adventure game that’s heavily inspired by Playdead’s titles LIMBO and INSIDE. As a player you control a vulnerable human protagonist, solve some puzzles and avoid death. We can’t emphasize the word avoid enough – if you seek conflict, you will die.


  • Controller & Keyboard/Mouse support
  • An atmospheric experience with simple controls
  • A single-player game in a hostile environment

Download Steel Castle from!


We had kind of a rough start and it felt that the development was running on quicksand and going nowhere. One of the biggest issues was losing two programmers early on and having to make do with 3 artists and 1 programmer.

Our issues became even more evident in mid-March when our progress (or lack thereof) was pointed out in a meeting with one of our teachers. Not to mention the state of the world right now that started to take effect in Finland as well during that time.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom, however. One of our big advantages was that we managed to keep our scope small from the very beginning and we were able to add more and more things, building on top of what had already been built instead of leaving a bunch of stuff in the cutting room floor. Granted, some ropes and more threats to the player would have been awesome but hey, you can’t have everything, right?

The biggest reason for our Steel Castle’s success is definitely the fact that one of our artists took the reins in scripting more and more functionality and things to interact with in the game. Importing DOTween was a genius move too that really gave us more time to think and implement new environments to the game instead of rubbing mechanics over and over again. Furthermore they’re responsible for our main character and most of the audio as well a whole host of other stuff that would drag this blog on forever, so talk about a multitasker!

In the end, Steel Castle was a huge learning experience for the whole team and we’re quite happy how the game turned out despite some growing pains.


  • Tero Salmela: Art, Audio & programming
  • Kasimir Haapala: Art & SFX
  • Aino Kauranen: Art
  • Rudi Rutanen: Programming & PM

Games Academy Spring 2019 – All That’s Left

Anthony Vanoostendorp – Project Manager, Artist
Teemu Niskanen – Lead Artist
Nikolai Jonasson – Artist
Vi Viro – Artist
Teijo Lukkarinen – Lead Programmer
Sami Sipari – Programmer
Ville Heikkinen – Programmer
Santeri Sivula – Programmer

Additional help: 

Pauli Ondruska – Audio

About the Game


All That’s Left is a level-based puzzle-adventure 3D game. You take control of Corious, a space-wandering tinkerer looking for signs of life, until his spaceship crashes on a deserted shattered world. The core game loop consists of platforming as well as solving puzzles using little robots called minibots, which Corious discovers on the first level. The player is able to send out minibots at any time and take full control of them. The goal of the game is to reach the end of each level in order to pick up a new spaceship part to repair it.


The idea for the game was already decided during the winter break. We took great inspiration from Clank’s side missions in the game Ratchet & Clank. We used the holidays and the first weeks to do some benchmarking and find more inspirations for the game. Initially the minibots were going to be automated, non-controllable robots that would walk in a straight line before encountering an object to interact with. We later realized our game was nothing but a walking simulator and that the game wasn’t that much fun. With the help of a teacher of ours, we decided to make the minibots controllable as well and this decision really added a whole new level of depth and layer for the core game loop. After this decision was made, development was much more swift when compared to the first month of just pure prototyping.


The minibots have three unique abilites; hacking, bombing and bouncing.
Below are gifs showcasing these abilities.

Hacking allows the minibot to hack consoles. These consoles can activate moving platforms, open doors, deactivate traps etc. The hacking ability is essential when it comes to solving puzzles, so put on your thinking cap and asses the puzzle in hand carefully.

Bombing does exactly what you might think it does. Make the minibot explode itself in order to kill pesky enemies such as frogs and scorpions. But watch out, the frogs can be unpredictable at times, so be ready to bomb them at a short notice.

Bouncing is a fundamental ability when it comes to traversing and platforming. Have a good grip of your joystick, since there will be some tight and precise platforming puzzles that will truly test your skills.

Game Contents

The game includes:
– Several control and volume options
– Save feature
– Intro Cutscene
– 8 levels
– End Scene with credits

We truly hope you enjoy this game project of ours. It is a culmination of 4 months of hard work.


This game is playable with keyboard & mouse as well as Xbox 360 controllers.

Move Character – WASD / Left Stick
Move Camera – Mouse / Right Stick
Jump – Spacebar / A
Zoom – Mouse Scroll / Triggers, Bumpers
Send out minibot – LMB / X
Hack – E / X
Bomb – RMB / B
Bounce – LMB / Y

Download the Game!
Discord Store: COMING SOON!

Games Academy Spring 2018: Splash


Manuel Gabarron – Lead artist, the hero we need but don’t deserve
Justin Granger – Lead programmer, and damn good at it
Mitja Immonen – Programmer, Unity guy & sound designer
Elli Leppänen – Artist, level designer
Sam Payne – Artist, character designer

The Game

Splash is a casual arena shooter centered on couch co-op. Currently in the game it has up to four person co-op, with one map, and four distinct guns. It is currently possible to be played against time, with max kill count or in endless mode.

Our original idea was to make a lan style shooter. We were quickly told though that it would become a beast if we didn’t immediately change scope. With that information we ended our sights on a couch co op game with a unique theme of water guns.

The game is already fully playable and people seem to enjoy playing it even longer periods of time. In-game pickups and switchable weapons make the game more interesting and engaging.

Design Process

Bazooka vs. Pistol – 2 Player split screen, Splash

After our brainstorming, and quick refocus, we took our idea to the drawing board. Coming up with map layouts and art boards. We spared no time in getting to work and with our three artists we set a person on the character, another on the environment, and our final artist on the guns and drops. As for the programmers we started creating the game control to make it as fluid as possible and the second on our particles and lighting as they would both be important to get the proper feel for the player.

As we progressed through the semester our team kept up a fluid pace communicating and passing work between us. There are still some optimization and improvements to do and we will be working on them after this semester.

Plans for the future

Menu rework render

We still want to improve our game and see how far we can take it. One of our last improvements is a complete rework of the menu, we discussed several ideas and ended up with a new unity scene that shows a cafe where the avatars will appear as the players join the match by pressing start, and the avatars are animated!

Cafe where players can join and spawn on the chairs

Player character sitting poses for cafe joining.

In the end we all were very happy with the outcome and proudly present splash!

Minimum requirements:

  • Beefy laptop
  • Two gamepads
  • Two humans

Google Drive Link (zip-file)