ABOUT THE PROJECT
• Project length: 2 weeks.
• Team size: 3.
•Engine: Unreal Engine 4.
•Genre: Action RPG.
• Level Design.
In this Futuregames project we created levels for a customized version of the UE4 Action RPG sample. The entire class was divided into teams of 3 where each team created one level, and we needed to coordinate a cohesive player experience between all our levels.
Since the entire class of 29 students needed to create a cohesive player experience we set up a common narrative that evolved through all nine levels. The level my team worked on was thus set to be the final stretch from the edge of the forest before the gates of the enemy castle.
We gathered reference material that we thought would be fitting for our setting and collected them as a source of inspiration. These included concept art images of shrines and fantasy forests, as well as screenshots and videos from existing games.
Throughout the project we communicated regularly with the other teams in order to make sure that our level was in line with the overall theme of the game world.
After the paper draft was made I constructed the landscape with the intention of affording the player visibility of their goal already at the start of the level. Since the player is scaling a mountain it was therefore important that the height levels did not feel insurmountable so that the castle could stand out as a visible landmark.
We wanted the diffuculty level presented in the level to steadily increase with progression, so we decided to increase the amount of enemies and their skill levels as the player encounters them. At first the player only meets a few low tier goblins, but the next encounter challenges them further with low tier goblins mixed with weak middle tier goblins. In the final battle they face off against all types of goblins at the same time.
It was important not to make the fights too difficult either so we decided to implement a risk vs reward opportunity for players to engage in as an optional extra challenge. The first time the player picks up a red potion it spawns a small amount of weak enemies around them. This is also used to foreshadow the events that will happen in the final battle where red potions are conveniently placed upon the triggers of the enemy spawners. The player might then learn that picking up the red potions will initiate combat.
Environmental storytelling was something else I wanted to incorporate into the level. Since the level is positioned close to the enemy’s final base I thought it appropriate that a goblin has built a hut outside the graveyard. This particular goblin is however a collector of human bones, which is shown by the improvised skeletal decorations on the exterior of the hut. Inside the graveyard crypt there are signs of looting and that someone has experimented with shapes to create the sigil that is attached above the goblin’s front door.
Working on a project where our team was part of a greater collective was a great experience. Coordinating between the different teams was a fun challenge that I can’t wait to do more of in the future! Even though the level we created is quite linear I don’t believe it is perceived as such when you play, so I am pleased with the outcome and proud of what I achieved together with my team.
• Per Hallros
• Chris Karlsson
• Adam Degerbrink
Thank you for checking out this project!