Archive for March, 2012

The Making of a Level

Friday, March 30th, 2012

The Level Making Process – Mutant Blobs Attack

Howdy all, Chris McQuinn here from Drinkbox Studios. I just thought I’d share the process we use when creating our levels, by giving you an inside view of constructing a typical section from the game from start to finish.

Alright, well, it all begins with an idea. And the thing about ideas is that they’re initially pretty bad. Well, especially mine. But don’t lose hope, ideas get better with iteration! First we create a section using the most basic wireframe blocks, some of the boxes are static, and others are moving threats.

This section forces the player to jump up through some crushers followed by a puzzle requiring touch platforms to be moved into lasers in order to create a safe path through.

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After playing this section for a bit we conclude:

- Jumping up through the crushers is good, keep this!

- Puzzle section is a bit too easy, can we make this harder? Spice it up a bit?

Ok, back to the drawing board. Let’s add some complexity to the puzzle by adding a few more lasers. In addition, why not have an optional challenge for players by teasing them with a Blob Friend. The result is below:

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Great, now that we’re happy with general layout of the section, it’s time to add some art so we can playtest. In order to save some time for our artist – the level designers get to do some designer art (gross).

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The above might make some people cringe, but it allows us to make further changes without having to go back to request additional art changes. After a bit of tweaking based on suggestions from guys around the office and some initial play-testing, we then bring in the art! Now the wireframe boxes are adjusted to match the art to be used in-game, resulting in the following:

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Perfect. Finally we polish by adding some lights, including background animations, and hide the wireframes from the player to result in a final product of a typical section from Mutant Blobs Attack:

 

Bring on the red carpet

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s time for the Canadian Video Game Awards, and Tales from Space: About a Blob has been nominated! High-fives to all those who nominated us. Just like the Oscars, feel free to make a CVGA pool among your friends to bet on who the winners will be. My advice, if you’re looking to cash in, is probably bet your life savings for AaB to win (don’t do this). What are we nominated for you may ask? Let me tell you:

Best Downloadable Game

Best Indie Game

Best New Character

w00t! The awards take place during Fan Expo Vancouver, so if you’re in the area, make sure to attend with a giant sign for AaB. Thanks in advance!