Hello! I'm Batu, a Ph.D. student at UC Santa Cruz conducting research in the field of Computational Media. I am interested in designing games and interactive systems as I truly believe that therein lies a lot of untapped potential for storytelling and creating immersive experiences. My research areas include Artifical Intelligence, Machine Learning and Tutorial design, all of which I consider to be exciting and creative ways to push the medium of gaming forward. If you’d like to see some of the things that I do take please a look at my resume here.

Reinforcement Learning in Game Development

During my internship at La Forge, Ubisoft Monreal I implemented reinforcement learning agents using Unity3D Machine Learning AI Agents. My focus was on using reinforcement learning techniquest for complex physics based navigation. During my internship I had the opportunity to explore different ideas such as visualizing value functinos as design aids, or using hierarchical reinforcement learning techniques to increase sample efficieny. What I am currently trying to do is implementing different learning enviroments in Unity3D and streamlining the experience for others to use the framework by making tutorials.

A Diagnostic Taxonomy of Failure

Failure is integral to playing videogames, we do not have a precise terminology for discussing different categories of failure. This is a problem because certain failures are critical to the design intent of the game, and, as such, are desirable, whereas other failures detract from the play experience and are meant to be avoided. In this paper, we taxonomize several classes of failure in the player's experience, offering a diagnostic tool that distinguishes in-loop failures from out-of-loop failures. By classifying both games and specific failure instances, the Taxonomy of Failure extends present vocabularies for: game designers making design choices, scholars critiquing the usability of games, educators teaching games, data analysts segmenting players, and game developers creating more adaptive games.

Talin: Dynamic Tutorials

Most tutorials in video games do not consider the skill level of the player when deciding what information to present. This makes many tutorials either tedious for experienced players or not informative enough for players who are new to the given genre. With Talin, implemented as an asset in the Unity game engine, we make it possible to create a mastery model of an individual player's skill levels by operationalizing Dan Cook's skill atom theory. We propose that using this mastery model opens up a new design space when it comes to designing tutorials. We show an example tutorial implementation with Talin assembled using only graphical components provided by our framework, without the need of writing any code. The dynamic tutorial implementation results in the player receiving information only when they need it, whenever they need it. While the novice player is given all the information they need to learn the system, the expert player is not bogged down by tooltip pop-ups regarding mechanics they have already mastered.


Cargie is a robotics project that is made by combining Positional Tracking Cameras, Unity3D and Arduino. Prototyped to help of Etihad Airways automate their ground cargo operation, Cargie offers a scalable method of moving heavy and dangerous goods from Point A to Point B with ease. The cameras track Cargie's position, which is then mapped into a virtual representation of the area that is created in Unity3D. This structure allows Cargie to have a birds eye view of the whole space and enables pathfinding between arbitrary points. You can see Cargie in action here


Conciousness is a Virtual Reality game for HTC Vive made by Unity3D . The player paddles through an "endless" paddler, trying to outrun a dark monster. Unlike other endless runners there is an underlying story and the player can uncover bits and pieces by destroying the floating crystals. You can watch an ongoing play test here.

Play A to Start

Play A to Start is a game that that helps people practice their musical insturments. Unlike other similar games however PA2S focuses on improvisation and creativity. Instead of offering a set song to play, the game offers a rythm and a combination of different notes and allows the player to practice their creativity given the constraints. The project is built using P5Js . The game was also featured in IMPACT Conference 2016.

Miscellaneous Works

Here you can find my other smaller scale projects - extremely buggy, unfinished in design, and waiting for the day they will shine. These are usually spawned from hackathons or a few hours of spare time.

Jeremy Cohen

Jeremy Cohen is a dungeon crawler made by Unity3D . The player has the option to stop time and que actions in order to execute them in a satisfying flurry of devastating blows. The player customizes his play style as he goes through procedurally generated levels. C# and Maya are some of the technologies we used to create this game.

The Four Knights

Four Knights is a card game that I designed myself. It has a special place in my heart because it was the first game I ever designed. A few years, ago I decided to port the game to PC using Python and TKinter. The games is a more strategic, paper version of Rock, Paper, Scissors. More Info.

Game Recommendation Engine

Game Recommend is a website that allows you to find games to your liking. You start by selecting your favourite game. The system then presents similar games to you. If you click on the one that interests you, you get three more similar games! This alows you to explore the game space. The project has a NodeJS and Express back end and uses the GiantBomb API.

Eco Eco

Eco Eco is an Android game made by Unity3D . The game aims to increase public awareness on global warming by giving the players a habitat to manage by putting plants and animals. The way players unlock assets is by playing real life mini games such as walking a certain distance or taking a picture of a reusable water bottle.


Hello! is a two player physical game that utilizes wearable technologies. The game creates a interesting tag style interraction by blindfolding one player and attaching lights + speakers to the other player. The player that is running away supress the sounds and lights for a short time when needed. The other player has to carefully search for the light and listen for the sounds. The project is made using Arduino Flora.

My Reflection

A web app that allows you to see the sentiment value of your tweets before you send them off to the wild. We hope that this will result in a moment of reflection and thus make the internet a less toxic place. The application is built using Express and Cordova .

Games Design Work

Here you can find other projects that I have worked on as a game/experience designer. In addition to traditional types of games my work with these projects allowed me to explore different types of experience designs, from educational experiences to theater related games.

Unity Workshops

I gave several Unity 3D workshops in a variety of different palces such as MIT Media Lab Reimagine Dubai Conference in Dubai, Random Makerthon of Kindness in New York and in NYU Abu Dhabi.


Worked as a game designer on a interactive theater piece by Attilio Rigotti. The audience members played as rookie detectives and helped solve a murder case in a futuristic sci-fi noir setting.


Devour is a project directed by Nia Wilson. It is a game/performance piece that experiments with the game form’s potential to address constructions of American race. It takes the form of a dinner table game in which players attempt to successfully role play stereotypes of their own races."

Mercy Frontier

MERCy frontier is a game that aims to incorporate well-known turn-based strategy paradigm into the boardgame medium. The players gather resources, build different buildings and recruit mercenaries and buy spells from a common pool. More Info.

Fallout Wars

Fallout Wars is a social game that focuses on bluffing, intimidation and deception. In each round the players bet their survivors (health and score) to earn additional resources. The game explores the tension of betting your score to get more score. More Info.


Evolved is a collectible trading card game that features a 1 versus 3 player style. One player will choose to play as the boss, whileas the other three will attempt to work together to bring the boss down. More Info.

My Undergraduate Collaborators

  • Xueer Zhu, AI Programmer on Assitive AI project
  • Eri Hu, AI Programmer on Assitive AI project
  • Hunter Lynch, User Reseracher on the SMES project
  • Carl Erez, GUI Programmer on the SMES project
  • Yuqing Yan, Designer on the SMES project
  • Pengze Zheng, Aethetics of Failure project
  • Katie Moses, on her Winter in June project

Contact Me

If you like what you see, please don't hesitate to contact me! You can find my contact information and my resume in the icons below or just send me an email at baytemiz@ucsc.edu!