Saturday, February 19, 2005

Lead Level Designer from BLIZZARD!

hey guyz,
i just ran into the lead level designer from blizzard, Phil Co! got some really useful tips as far as designing a game level is concerned. He was a guest lecturer in one of our game design classes .It was great to have our work critiqued from him. He gave me some good tips on how i can improve on the rough draft of my game level and hope it helps all of you going into level designing as well.

He spoke of the game level design being divided into 7 parts:

1] know your design tools or the game play mechanics : running, jumping, climbing.
2] order the design tools according to difficulty
3] brainstorm puzzles : make sure the puzzles have a clear objective , simple start, add combinations of 2 or more puzzles, adding variety, have a quality curve ( something he stressed on the most) , which means that start and end the puzzle on high notes and save the better ideas for the later levels.
4] diagram : compact and dense, visualize the spaces, follow the chart viz. the design tool chart, puzzle chart, enemy chart.
5] rough draft (the template or block mesh) : size and length (relative to the rest of the game) , 10 second rule ----- if the player can walk without anything popping out in the game for more than 10 sec. go ahead AND CHANGE THAT! and lastly, technology check.
6] watch without speaking : little kids are the best testers for your game levels, wide audience.
7] revise : keeping consistent ---- graphics reveals gameplay, editing puzzles --- removing complexity, balancing difficulty --- puzzles, monsters, secrets.

besides this he gave us a rough draft of one of the game levels he designed from Harry Potter and the chamber of secrets -- the skruge challenge.
hope this little bit of info would have helped all of u intrested in level design!!!

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