Warren (Igathering) 2012
Engine: UDK May 2012 Beta
Time: 2 days
Team: Just me
Assignment: Make a game in 2 days with the theme "X".
Approach: Because I was on my own at the igathering, I needed to use an engine that I was already familiar with and that allows me the freedom to program a game without diving into code. UDK seemed the best option for it.
The cross that was drawn for the theme reminded me of a crossroad and brought me to a cubic maze. I wanted to make a maze that was more or less random and would change during gameplay. The maze is devided into 4 sectors that work independently from one another. To still guarantee that the random maze would not break the game, each sector randomly picks one of the 6 presets. This makes sure that the player will never be stuck or cannot reach the checkpoint. Every time the player reaches a checkpoint or restarts the game the maze will change. (So learning the maze by heart is not an option.)
I try to integrate the information the player needs with the environment instead of using a HUD.
The timer is represented by a row of lights high on each wall. It will count down to the game over.
The checkpoints (Goal of a level) are solitary bundles of light
that are high enough to be seen from almost anywhere in the game.
Once a player has reached a checkpoint the next one will come up at one of the other 3 sectors.
I don’t like to have to explain the game play. It should explain itself if possible.
A proven method of doing this is by using a fly-by cutscenes that alerts the player to points of interest.
The game starts with a overview shot of the maze, that way the player has a sense of the layout.
The second is a shot of the time lights as they light up, and the last shows the checkpoint
and its location in relationship to the start point of the player.
I regret not having enough time to add sound to the game. It would have given the player a lot more feedback. Especially for the timer.
The music is from the Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Conviction soundtrack
I had very little need to use anything else but the UDK. Therefore all the assets used are standard delivered with the UDK itself.
To keep order in the chaos that kismet tends to become,
I used different sub-levels to build my kismet.
That way I could save and lock one down to keep it from accidental overwrites.
Once I had a simple kismet for one of the movable walls
I was able to copy past them for the 63 other gates.
The game is able to loop and reset itself when the player reaches the end or runs out of time.
The original design had 8 checkpoints the player had to capture before the game ended
but for the sake of a quick demo the game has been set to 4 by a boolean.
Would that boolean be set to true the game will run 8 checkpoints before the player can reach the end.
With every checkpoint taken by the player, the timer resets but will also shorten the time allowed to reach the next checkpoint.