Silo - Unreal Tournament Level
The goal of this level was to create a capture the flag level that pulled inspiration from the classic Team Fortress 2 map, 2Fort and added moving level features to make the level another player within the game. The level was made using the Epic Game's Unreal Tournament Editor with the assets included in the editor. Also all of the textures are those that are included in the editor. The level was built over the course of 14 weeks, with myself being the sole designer for the level. The level was tested with other designers in my Advanced Seminar: Game Design.
The level started out with no inspiration from 2Fort. My original concept for the level was to make a large U-shaped factory that was built into a mountain. Below is the level design document that I made for the level, showing the different areas and the scale of the space.
Above are images that I drew inspiration from, as well as two different versions of the level design documentation.
After creating the level design document, I started to build out the level in engine using BSP geometry. As I started to build out the basic shape of the level, I found myself not liking how large the space of the level felt and how open the level was looking. I felt that the level was too open and had too many long straight sight lines. So after thinking about different ways to fix this issue, such as changing the scale of the level or thinking of different objects to use to break up the sight lines. But as I was thinking of these fixes I was finding myself thinking of all the time that would be needed to make the level successful, I found that it would be more efficient for me to just start over with a new level. This is where the idea to create my own interpretation of 2Fort was born.
After rebuilding the level with more inspiration from 2Fort, I was able to spend some time testing the level with the AI opponents built into the game. This testing showed a few interesting things about the design of the level. One of the first things that testing showed was that the AI bots are unable to use the moving platforms unless they are in the exact position that they start in. This lead to me not really being able to see how useful these platforms are to players. I was also able to show this level to some of my classmates and get their options on it as well. One of the biggest pieces of feedback was that they felt the moving platforms were not beneficial to them and their style of play. So based on this feedback my goal will be to iterate on how to add value to the moving platforms and make them more vital to successful play.
After changing the platforms so that there was more order to their movement, I got feedback that the center area was not interesting to players. They found this area to be boring to play in and it provided no benefits to using it over the tunnels that run from base to base. So to react to this feedback I covered the center area to separate it from the tunnels and the main level of the map. And in the center of the main level I made a large silo with four entrances and an inner rotating wall with four entrances. This creates a mini arena within the level for players to contest.
After more testing with classmates. I found that they were using the tunnels to get the flag back to their base without being contested. To fix this exploit I have redesigned the lower tunnel area of the level so that all of the tunnels lead to the center of the lower level and not directly to the bases. Also I added another set of entrances to lower area with a rotating wall like that of the main level. I also added lift platforms to allow players to exit the tunnels and come directly up to the main level. This solved the issue of players being able to run directly from one base to the other with no way for the other team to defend against it.
Below is some of the data that I collected throughout the project from play testing over the course of the project. Which helped infulence the changes that I made over the course of the project.