Here are some of my personal projects in
Level Design, Game Design, Writing and Art
Dreams of a Level Designer
Overview of Library section
Player start with view of first locked door
player has plenty of routes to sneak around and ambush, as well as find ammo among the bookshelves.
Overview of Library section
LD Time Challenge
Description: I set for myself a challenge to create a short level for an action VR game with stealth and puzzle elements. The idea was for me to graybox a level in a few hours and to convey the ideas of the level and the player's flow through the level in a concise manner.
As I've recently played the hit VR title Half-Life: Alyx, I was in the mood to create a similar experience, in very basic shapes in Unreal 5.
I started by brainstorming and finding a theme for the level, as well as a story to base my creative decisions on. I landed on the story of a snowy apocalypse where the player drops into a snow covered library overrun with enemies and a weird alien growth, his goal being to reach the exit of the library and investigate further into the strange mutations growing everywhere.
After finding the story and idea, I sketched out initial ideas on paper until I arrived on a rough shape that I wanted to take further. Along the way I was coming up with game design ideas for this imaginary game, like the ability to reach through openings to grab loot or manipulate objects. After the paper design stage comes the initial grayboxing in Unreal. Setting up everything how the sketch says and then I go through and test out this initial design and how it feels in 3D space. From there on the grayboxing continues but in a more detailed manner. I add smaller details and simple level geometry that still influences the players perspective and view at different stages in the level. The First section of the level is a small hallway with a little puzzle. There are goodies (grenades and ammo) seen through a window but not accessible by the player (arms too short). Going down the hallway is a locked door with a cracked wall through which the player can reach and open said door (mechanic taught just earlier with the broken window). Here he can find a key to get to the goodies, which can then be used in the upcoming open two story library section. The player starts here on the upper floor, while his goal (a door leading deeper into the building) is on the ground floor below. The open space offers the player a clear view downstairs to get familiar with the layout of enemies and environment and to offer the player several ways on how to approach this combat situation. After taking out a key enemy (silent knife time) the player has the option to use either staircase to get down to ground floor. The layout of the level is strewn with bookshelves that offer firing, spying and covering opportunities to the player. In total this short level graybox was finished in around 5 hours from start (brainstorming) to a "finished" state, meaning from here on I would push the level further to include actual enemies, puzzles, and items and make it playable from start to finish. From there playtesting would start, showing flaws in the design and needed changes.