Joe Distasio's Senior Project

This information on this site deals with my senior project, which is done as part of the CSC 4790 course.

Click here for some screen shots from the game.

I updated the game to version 2 as part of a potential online journal article. Click here to downlaod The Labyrinth 2.
If you are still interested in the first version, click here to download The Labyrinth.

Instructions: Right click and "Save As" to save the game's jar file on your computer. If the game gets downloaded to your computer as a zip file instead of an executable jar file, you must do the following: redownload the game, but this time add ".jar" to the end of the file name, this should give you a jar file instead of a zip file. To launch the game just double click on the jar file's icon.

Note that this game requires Java to be installed on your computer to run properly. Go here to download Java from Sun's website (download either the one labeled "J2SE v 1.4.2_06 SDK" or the one labeled "J2SE v 1.4.2_06 JRE").

Project Description:
For my senior project I intend to make a video game that can be played on the computer. The game will involve looking down on a maze and trying to navigate a character through it. However, the player will not be able to see all areas of the maze. Only a small portion of the maze, the area around the character, will be visible. The rest of the maze will be blacked out and unable to be seen. The area of visibility will move with the character. Additionally, there will be a monster wondering around the maze. If the monster sees the character, it will chase him and if it catches him, it will be game over. The player's ultimate goal is to navigate the character out of the maze while avoiding the monster. I plan to include multiple levels, each having the same game play, but with different mazes. I am also considering adding power-ups to the game which will grant the character helpful abilities, such as increasing the visible area or allowing him to get past the monster unharmed.

Project progress:
8/29/2004 I spent some time brainstorming for ideas. I had already decided that I wanted to make a game, so it was only a question of which kind of game. I ended up deciding on a maze navigation game. A better description of it is available in the project description section of this webpage.
9/3/2004 I created and posted the website for my project.
9/8/2004 I met with Dr. Way today and he said that my project sounded like a good idea and gave me the go ahead. So now I can start working on everything.
9/12/2004 I started doing some research for my project by looking through my books and the internet for some examples that might be of help.
9/17/2004 Today I spent my time coding some of the project. I designed and coded the GUI for the game, including the game space and the required menus. Additionally, I created several animated GIFs of the player controlled character for the game. I also managed to setup some event handling so that when the arrow keys are pressed the character will move around the game board in the appropriate direction (as well as display the appropriate animated GIF). Next week I hope to get a maze onto the game board that the character can interact with (by that I mean the character will be stopped by walls). Total hours worked today: 10 and a half.
9/24/2004 Today I started off by fixing a part of my character animation. The animation now stops when the user releases the arrow key. It resumes again when the user presses the key again. I also got the maze logic working and coded so that the charater can now navigate the maze correctly (without going through walls). Additionally, I created a rough design for the first level in the game. My next goal for the project is to incorporate the blacked out area and the visible spotlight around the character. Total hours worked today: 8.
10/11/2004 Today, I first got the spotlight working so that it blacks out the maze except for a small area that follows the character around. Next I coded the movement for the monster and made sure it is working. Finally today, I redisgned the first level of the game to better depict the way the mazes are going to look in the final version. The next step I plan to take is to create the animated gifs for the monster. Total hours worked today: 9 and a half.
10/13/2004 Today I designed the animated gifs for the monster and incorporated them into the program. Next I set up the end of level triggers which are set off when the character reaches the end of the maze. Finally, I designed the second level of the game. Next time I hope to code the second level into the game and get the game able to handle multiple levels. Total hours worked today: 6.
10/15/2004 Today I managed to code the second level into the game and get the game able to handle multiple levels. Additionally, I fixed some bugs with the monster's movement and I set up the trigger that ends the game when the character runs into the monster. My next goal is to design and implement the splash screens that will be used in the game. Total hours worked today: 4.
10/22/2004 Today I was able to figure out the logic for the splash screens and get it coded. I also designed and implemented two of the splash screens. The next step I hope to accomplish is to finish the splash screens and add some more levels. Total hours worked today: 6.
10/29/2004 Today I first finished designing and implementing the splash screens. I then wrote the in game instructions and programmed them into the game. Next I got the pull down menus working. Finally, I designed and implemented the third level of the game. The next thing I hope to get done is adding the rest of the levels to the game. Total hours worked today: 9.
11/5/2004 Today I designed the last seven levels of the game. Next time I hope to get them implemented into the game. Total hours worked today: 6.
11/8/2004 The website has been updated with screen shots from both the game and the source gif files. The screen shots page can be accessed using the link at the top of this page or by clicking here.
11/12/2004 I got the next four levels (levels 4 through 7) coded into the game today. I hope to finish the rest of the levels sometime this week. Total hours worked today: 3.
11/17/2004 Today I got the rest of the levels coded into the game. So now, all ten levels are designed and incorporated into the program. My next step will be to start working on the project binder. Total hours worked today: 4 and a half.
11/19/2004 Today I started work on my project binder by completing the software requirements specification. Next time I plan to continue working on the binder. Total hours worked today: 8.
11/24/2004 Today I first cleaned up the program's code and added comments to it. I also updated the game's instructions and I made a formal version of them for the project binder. Additionally, with help from Dr. Way, I managed to figure out how to successfully compress the program and its resources into an executable jar file. This will greatly help with distribution from the website. Next, I will continue to work on the material for the project binder. Total hours worked today: 8.
12/3/2004 Today I made up the slides and demo for my presentation. There are only a few pieces of the binder left and I hope to work on them next time. Total hours worked today: 3.
12/7/2004 Today I prepared the last pieces of the project binder. All that's left is to put the binder together and release the game on the website. Total hours worked today: 1 and a half.
12/10/2004 Today I finished the last parts of my project. I printed out the last parts of my project binder and put everything together so that it is ready to turn in. Additionally, I finished my project Post Mortem and my project poster. Finally, the game has been made available for download from the project website. To download it, please use the link at the top of this page. Total hours worked today: 6 hours.