It’s been a while! Here’s a screenshot of the second world in Fragger 2

forest_screenie

Level Design

Today I’m sharing a video showing how I design levels for Fragger 2 inside of Unity whit a set of custom editor tools. The video is sped up 500%. I first design all of the levels on paper then take them to the editor. Some times they don’t work, some times they are boring, so you just keep adjusting or even scrap them if they just plain suck. A lot of times you don’t foresee some issues on paper and they present themselves once you are designing it inside the editor. This creates for some creative problem solving and at times the solutions you come up with make the level even better! The important thing is to recognize where something is just off, not working, or not up to par.

The Switch

I’d like to talk about the switch between “programming mode” and “art mode”. Even though I was on my way to being an artist way before I ever did any programming( this is way back when I was a child ), over the  course of the past, say, 6 years? I’ve been primarily focused on programming and my art skills have gone down significantly. Or rather, improved at a very very minimal rate. I don’t have the time to practice as much as I once did and I don’t have the same interest in it as I once did.

So when it comes time to focus more on the art side of things for a project it takes a little while for my mind to effectively switch from programming to art mode. When I need to do a tiny little bit of art for a project in-between programming, I dread it. Because I know my mind is not in that mode and everything will come out looking pretty awful. I’ve found out that it takes about 5 days, give or take, for my mind to start to sync into art mode. Before that my visual memory doesn’t seem to work very well, so it’s hard to come up with designs, or remember what something looks like. My hands are not used to throwing lines efficiently when drawing anymore. My color sense is not working well. So for me it takes a little bit of art-only work daily in order to be able to start putting out things that I’m at least more comfortable with how they came out.

Kind of interesting, and inconvenient at the same time :(  I wonder how other one-man-shop devs handle this? I’ve seen some lone devs seem unaffected by this ( or so that’s my impression ) since they come out with some amazing looking art while their next post in code-heavy… Bastards!

Finally, here’s what I’m currently working on – sketches for props that will be used to decorate the levels :

 

props

First Art Pass

Well, I’ve switched to art for a little while. I’m very rusty but trying my best to get things done in a timely manner without everything coming out too ugly. As long ass when everything comes together it looks nice and cohesive, I’ll be happy :)

 

fragger_2_level_work

Bezier Shape Manipulation Tool

Here’s a bezier shape tool I’ve been working on the past 2 days in order to facilitate level design for Fragger 2.

Originally all shapes were created in Flash Professional, then exported via a JSFL script, and then imported into Unity with another tool and component. But I required a bit more versatility. So, even though I was reluctant to make this tool for now I ended up biting the bullet and making it at least in simple form for the time being. The tool still allows you to import complex shapes created in Flash as well.



Workstation and Schedule Ready!

Well after all the trouble I’ve been through, with some help from my family, I’ve managed to set up a humble workstation and a schedule to the finish line of the game. And here it is :

workstation

Yeah, pink walls. It’s not my room… But it’ll have to do for the remainder of the project! Stay tuned!