Mary-Kate and Ashley: Girls Night Out

Mary-Kate and Ashley have organized a girls night out filled with hip fashion and some hip-hop dance moves. First, you've got to have the right look to get into the club: select from the twins' wardrobe of clothes, shoes, and accessories. Then it's time to dance the night away.

Mary-Kate and Ashley: Girls Night Out
Platform Game Boy Advance
Publisher Acclaim
Released 2002
Language C, Perl
Credited Role Programmer

This was my second commercial game, and my first for the Game Boy Advance. Working in C was leaps and bounds nicer than the Z80 assembly language of the Game Boy Color, so I was psyched.

Mary-Kate and Ashley Girls Night Out a Dance Dance Revolution-style rhythm game, and my job was to implement the gameplay and all that entailed: music, in-game visuals, level importing, special effects, etc. This game had a 3D dancing character and motion-captured animations, a rarity in GBA games, so I also had to handle playback of dance animations that changed depending how the player was doing.

I set up a queue for dance arrows to come down the screen. I made a system to switch backgrounds on the fly, and color-cycle the abstract ones. I added a Matrix-style camera spin to showcase the 3D character. I wrote Perl scripts to parse the MIDI files we used to build the levels. Added level select menus. An outfitter to change your character's closed. Remix mode. A create-a-level mode, where you could jam along the music with your own sounds (and then play the level you created). Unlockable outfits, dance moves, and jam sounds. Super special secret unlockable extras. An awesome end credits sequence. For a kid out of college barely a year ago, this was all amazing. It didn't matter that I was working on a Mary-Kate and Ashley game: I poured my heart into it, and I knew that this is what I would be doing for a long time to come.

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