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This topic contains 7 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Loki 9 years, 9 months ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #6327

    Matthew
    Participant

    First of all this map is nowhere near finished, still loads to do but I am looking for some feedback on the general layout and design. I am still not sure about the fog because you can’t see the grass at the other end of the map from some positions etc. There is also a rain effect, but you can’t see it in the screenshots, I am going to look at improving it (the rain) though because it looks a wee bit crap, but then again this is an old version of Unreal.

    http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/3702/woodland1sv0.jpg

    http://img205.imageshack.us/img205/7954/woodland2hk7.jpg

    http://www.gearsofgames.net/randomuploads/woodland_3_early.jpg

    http://www.gearsofgames.net/randomuploads/Woodland_4_early.jpg

    http://www.gearsofgames.net/randomuploads/woodland_5_early.jpg

    Update:

    This is after i edited the fog and adding lighting in the skybox.

    http://www.gearsofgames.net/randomuploads/woodland_6_early.jpg

  • #38894

    irishlostboy
    Participant

    first, the map has no "points of focus" that i can see. you need elements which stand out. they give a map a sense of purpose, and help navigation.

    second, there are only 3 things in the map. terrain, grass, and trees. this might work in real life, but games need a bit more purpose in the design. from the players perspective, there is nothing to inspire him forward.
    think of "facing worlds" map. simple example of this. two big features, which pull you in the right direction. even just a rocky outcrop, in the right place, would help

    third,the lighting is flat. again, one light source (the moon) works in real life, but not in games. look at how half life lit its night time scenes. this can tie in with the second point.
    here is a tiny part of my unreal level from my college project last year. look at how the light creates focal points for navigation, and creates atmosphere.
    http://irishlostboy.deviantart.com/art/UT2004-garage-WIP01-49229655

    fourth, quality of assets. unreal 2004 is still a powerful engine. nearly equill to source. make sure your assets are the equil of the engine. the trees you have are boring. the ground textures are poor looking, and badly scaled. a lot of great games have been done on the unreal engine. so dont view it as a limitation to your abilities, instead pander to its strengths. it has good light mapping. it can REALLY push polygons. etc etc.

    fifth. use referance. gather, and/or draw as many referance designs as possible before you move a single builder brush. its too easy to become lost behind the tools. look at other peoples work that you want to emulate. take screenshots from your favourite levels.

    i know this crit is very negative, and a bit vague. i have been away all weekend and am a bit fried. keep working on it. you will get there ;)

  • #38896

    Matthew
    Participant

    Thanks for the advice. Some useful stuff their it will help me improve the map a lot. If anything is inspired me to work hard at the map.

    thanks

  • #38895

    irishlostboy
    Participant

    if it has done this, i am glad. good luck with it.

  • #39135

    Matthew
    Participant
  • #39156

    Loki
    Participant

    I’ve been at this lark for nearly 8 years now.

    When I started I knew absolutely NOTHING about game or level design. So, myself and my fellow level designer did exactly what you are doing.

    I found that although all these articles talk a lot of common sense they are all opinion. Fair enough, alot of the stuff I agreed with, some I didn’t.

    Here’s a couple of links to stuff I found useful.

    Cliffy B’s Art and Science of Level Design.
    http://www.cliffyb.com/art-sci-ld.html

    Oh it’s all a bit tongue in cheek but the majority of the stuff he talks about I still take as gospel. Gears of War is testiment to that.

    Paul Warne’s Three Inspirations
    http://www.gamasutra.com/resource_guide/20010716/warne_01.htm

    Wordy but expands the old grey matter and gets you thinking out of the box.

    Other than that just google "Gamasutra Level Design" and read EVERYTHING!

    Few questions…
    1. Did you design the level on paper first?
    2. Did you come up with gameplay scenarios/events for the player?
    3. You do a scratch level (greymap) to test the gameplay?

    From what I saw of the screenshots (and I could be wrong, if I am, I apologise) you dived straight into construction.

    This is always a bad idea. Even though I’m here preaching the contrary, I have been quilty of this crime in just the last few weeks.

    I had come up with a broad idea for the level I wanted to create and then started construction. 1 week later I load it up and…

    It was crap. Very, very crap. I took the next 2 weeks designing it properly and the results are startling. I might even post it should there me enough interest.
    A right proper "How NOT to make a level".

    You’ll all see the results in the New Year.

    Hope my wittering has helped put you on the right path.

    PS
    You’ll never be finished learning this "trade". Never.

  • #39165

    Matthew
    Participant

    Thanks for the post mate.

    1. Did you design the level on paper first?
    2. Did you come up with gameplay scenarios/events for the player?
    3. You do a scratch level (greymap) to test the gameplay?

    The answer two the questions above is sort of, sort of, no. I have a really great idea for my next map (which will be in gears of war this time) and I think I have learnt a lot more about design in the past few weeks, including putting a lot more work in before starting to make the level.

    Thanks for the links as well and I am really thankful to you and everyone out there who has helped me out so far. Are you working in the Industry yourself now or what?

    Thanks again :D

  • #39166

    Loki
    Participant

    No problem… and yes I am.

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