My role: Level designer and Blueprint scripter
Team size: Solo
Project duration: 3 weeks
Tools: Unreal Engine 4
Project type: Personal project
Designed the level
Scripted level events
Planned and conducted playtesting
This is a level I made in my spare time, it’s inspired by these photos.
I wanted to practice level scripting, story beats, pacing and guiding the player. The level is set in a fictional FPS game.
Topdown of the level.
There are six story beats in the level:
Locating the ally
Dealing with the machine gunner
Using the machine gun
Blowing up enemy tank
Blowing up the bridge
Escaping the level
I wanted the beats to feel different to each other but still support the main core of FPS gameplay.
locating the ally
This is the first thing the player has to do in the level. I wanted the players to have a focal point to focus on for the rest of the mission.
Guiding the player
The negative space created from the mountain in combination with the windmills clear silhouette allows the windmill to stand out, giving the player a focal point in the level.
I based my level around three key moments that I wanted the player to experience: confronting the machine gunner, fighting the enemy tank and escaping the level with enemies on your tail. From this I based the pacing of the level on a three act structure where each moment served as the pinnacle of respective act. My goal for the level was to create a rising intensity throughout the level, but still having moments of release where the player can relax and enjoy the spectacle.
What I learned
It's tricky to create a well balanced level with good pacing and proper guidance for the player. People react differently to different things and that the only real good way of finding out how to adjust your level is by doing focused playtests.