Maiia Lysytska

Game Designer
Maiia is a game designer with Ukrainian roots and passion for a good anecdote. In her works, Maiia experiments with mythologies, mechanics, and systems to talk about day-to-day topics in a playful manner.
Thesis Faculty
Ernesto KlarAyodamola Tanimowo OkunseindeMelanie CreanGloria Duan



soloway is a deconstructed rhythm game that communicates on a topic of Ukrainian popular culture through history.

The episode presented on thesis show focuses specifically on 1960s-1980s in Ukrainian music.

Following Stalin’s death, Ukrainian art gained more freedom: authorities redeemed several executed artists and eased overall censorship. At the same time, youth was trying to gain access to Western music in spite of Iron Curtain. These motions in society amalgamated into unique sound of Ukrainian funk. Very soon, new wave of Ukrainian Renaissance would meet another wave of repressions, resulting in loss of numerous legendary artists, poets, and musicians.

The part of the game presented on show is intended to be a boss battle within the bigger gameplay.

In game’s design, Maiia tries to deconstruct traditional rhythm game mechanics. In a zeitgeist of 1970s counter-culture, the player is not required to keep up with specific rhythm at all. Instead, the player has specific time frames when they get to deal damage to the boss, as well as timed obstacles they have to dodge.

soloway’s interface

The game has unique sound design system. The guitar effect is recorded in specific way to always remain harmonic to background music to create mistake-free jamming experience. This, along with snappy dramatic motion, creates dramatic sensation throughout gameplay.

Main character’s design

Most of the assets for the game were created by the author. The 3D assets were created in Blender, the textures were created in Substance 3D and Adobe Photoshop. The imagery for UI and texture photobashing was achieved through Adobe Stock. The sound design was created in Logic Pro X, and the game’s main soundtrack is based on I Will Go To Distant Mountains by Volodymyr Ivasiuk. The game is built in Unity Engine.