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    Pen & Paper Level Designs

    In this thread let's share our basic concepts, designs and layouts for the levels. I need to remind you though, please only share the very basic, top-down layouts of your maps. This (I believe) is the very first step of creating a map and these layouts will show us
    1. Traversable area
    2. Buildings and ground levels
    3. Location of the grand power-ups (maybe)


    You can detail these maps in according to the lore of course.

    Let's start writing.. (:

    Additional guidelines:
    Originally posted by David Spalinski View Post
    Some additional iconography that I tend to use when drawing out map layouts are:

    Arrows to indicate ramps, stairs, or sloped surfaces. The direction the arrow is pointing in is the higher side.

    Numbers on discrete surfaces to indicated height / flight. This way you can tell there will be a ledge between two areas. All surfaces at the same height may have a number like 3 written on them if they are on the third relative height within the map

    Points of interest indicated with A, B, C, etc. notes about the POI to the side.

    Powerups and weapons indicated with a shared icon initially, then written out later (flak, keg, shield belt). Using a shared icon initially (an icon that says "something cool goes here") helps me look at the drawing afterwards with a fresh look, imagining that any weapon or powerup spot could be anything else. Sometimes I notice a better opportunity for a specific weapon to swap places with something else. When I am confident with the arrangement, then I will replace the shared icon with written text.
    Last edited by Tycerax; 05-14-2014, 04:27 AM.
    Tiny Details That Should NOT Be Forgotten & Dynamic Arenas & UT4 Storyline - Story Design & Gametype Designs: Volleyball - 3-Way CTF & Smartphone/Tablet Integration

    #2
    This map is once a Liandri Correctional Facility Recreational Area. It has Guard Lookouts (1), corridors between the lookouts (2), recreation area (3) and a small maze-like forest-plant area (4). The prisoners that work in Liandri mines are taken here for brief moments of peace back in the day but now it is being submitted for the Tournament. Lookouts are 3 stories tall and can see a potion of the maze. The maze has fences that doesn't allow prisoners to cross but players can shoot between them if they are Hawkeye enough. (: The maze and the recreational area has jumppads that lead the players to the grand power-ups (marked with alpha's in the map - α). Corridors have openings at head level so players can shoot or be shot at.

    Ingame, there is a full moon above this level and almost everywhere is moonlit. There may be seats in the map but I doubt that they will restrict movement so it's best not to have those. I can write a detailed lore about this place if it's worthy.. (:

    Player size (max): 8-12-16
    Gametypes: DM - TDM -TAM - ...
    Textures: Industrial & urban forest.

    Click image for larger version

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    So what do you think? (:

    Edit: Added second picture with more details (as David mentioned) and 3rd and 4th lookout levels. Yeah, I decided that lookouts are a bit shallow so I added them another block. (:

    Numbers are representing the height level off the ground (1 - base level). Roman numeral I represents Jumppads and A & B represents super pickups (Keg & UDamage respectively). A has 2, B has 3 jumppads leading to them and the both have another jumppad on them to send the player back to the maze.

    P.S. The second one has a bit different maze than the first, consider the second picture as basis on that matter. (:
    Last edited by Tycerax; 05-15-2014, 06:38 PM. Reason: Adding details and stuff...
    Tiny Details That Should NOT Be Forgotten & Dynamic Arenas & UT4 Storyline - Story Design & Gametype Designs: Volleyball - 3-Way CTF & Smartphone/Tablet Integration

    Comment


      #3
      Cool! For some reason that reminded me of prison architect.

      Paper layouts make it easy to share ideas quickly. Some additional iconography that I tend to use when drawing out map layouts are:

      Arrows to indicate ramps, stairs, or sloped surfaces. The direction the arrow is pointing in is the higher side.

      Numbers on discrete surfaces to indicated height / flight. This way you can tell there will be a ledge between two areas. All surfaces at the same height may have a number like 3 written on them if they are on the third relative height within the map

      Points of interest indicated with A, B, C, etc. notes about the POI to the side.

      Powerups and weapons indicated with a shared icon initially, then written out later (flak, keg, shield belt). Using a shared icon initially (an icon that says "something cool goes here") helps me look at the drawing afterwards with a fresh look, imagining that any weapon or powerup spot could be anything else. Sometimes I notice a better opportunity for a specific weapon to swap places with something else. When I am confident with the arrangement, then I will replace the shared icon with written text.
      David Spalinski
      @spazinski
      Epic Games

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Tycerax View Post
        This map is once a Liandri Correctional Facility Recreational Area. It has Guard Lookouts (1), corridors between the lookouts (2), recreation area (3) and a small maze-like forest-plant area (4). The prisoners that work in Liandri mines are taken here for brief moments of peace back in the day but now it is being submitted for the Tournament. Lookouts are 2 stories tall and can see a potion of the maze. The maze has fences that doesn't allow prisoners to cross but players can shoot between them if they are Hawkeye enough. (: The maze and the recreational area has jumppads that lead the players to the grand power-ups (marked with alpha's in the map - α). Corridors have openings at head level so players can shoot or be shot at.

        Ingame, there is a full moon above this level and almost everywhere is moonlit. There may be seats in the map but I doubt that they will restrict movement so it's best not to have those. I can write a detailed lore about this place if it's worthy.. (:

        Player size (max): 8-12
        Gametypes: DM - TDM -TAM - ...
        Textures: Industrial & urban forest.

        [ATTACH=CONFIG]2466[/ATTACH]

        So what do you think? (:
        This is based on a DM map on UT99? It kinda reminds me of it, I don't know if you remember but there is middle door you fall in and is pretty much a portal that leads you to the top where you have to avoid some electric wires. It was a fun map for a 1v1.
        History: UT99 (2003 - 2007; 2009 - Now) UT2k4: (2005-2007), UT3 (2008-2009)
        UT Nicknames: Shotman, HeatWave, MY_KID
        UT Clan: -={SDA}=- (Sniping Death Angles) and zsu (Zark Snipers United)
        UT Main Menu Design

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by SDAHeatWave View Post
          This is based on a DM map on UT99? It kinda reminds me of it, I don't know if you remember but there is middle door you fall in and is pretty much a portal that leads you to the top where you have to avoid some electric wires. It was a fun map for a 1v1.
          No - at least I didn't have that map (which I couldn't remember with your description) on my mind when I drew this. (:
          Tiny Details That Should NOT Be Forgotten & Dynamic Arenas & UT4 Storyline - Story Design & Gametype Designs: Volleyball - 3-Way CTF & Smartphone/Tablet Integration

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Tycerax View Post
            No - at least I didn't have that map (which I couldn't remember with your description) on my mind when I drew this. (:
            Click image for larger version

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            http://liandri.beyondunreal.com/DM-Fractal

            This is the map that I am talking about.
            History: UT99 (2003 - 2007; 2009 - Now) UT2k4: (2005-2007), UT3 (2008-2009)
            UT Nicknames: Shotman, HeatWave, MY_KID
            UT Clan: -={SDA}=- (Sniping Death Angles) and zsu (Zark Snipers United)
            UT Main Menu Design

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by SDAHeatWave View Post
              [ATTACH=CONFIG]2500[/ATTACH]

              http://liandri.beyondunreal.com/DM-Fractal

              This is the map that I am talking about.
              I played the map now and I can confirm that the map I have in my head is larger, not very vertical and has both industrial and forage feel. I guess the hexagon layout made you feel that way. (:
              Tiny Details That Should NOT Be Forgotten & Dynamic Arenas & UT4 Storyline - Story Design & Gametype Designs: Volleyball - 3-Way CTF & Smartphone/Tablet Integration

              Comment


                #8
                Nice edit to your original image. I feel like I can see your idea a bit more now.
                David Spalinski
                @spazinski
                Epic Games

                Comment


                  #9
                  Just a suggestion, but you may want to try drawing up a version where you bring more asymmetry to the outer corridors of the map, even as just an exercise to examine the difference.

                  It's not vital, and there have been plenty of fun symmetrical arena maps, but it will help players have more variety in their experience, and be easier to get their bearings. You can get around this in symmetrical maps by making the look of one outer corridor different (lights are out, roof is busted open, different architecture), as well as put different pickups there.
                  David Spalinski
                  @spazinski
                  Epic Games

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by David Spalinski View Post
                    Just a suggestion, but you may want to try drawing up a version where you bring more asymmetry to the outer corridors of the map, even as just an exercise to examine the difference.

                    It's not vital, and there have been plenty of fun symmetrical arena maps, but it will help players have more variety in their experience, and be easier to get their bearings. You can get around this in symmetrical maps by making the look of one outer corridor different (lights are out, roof is busted open, different architecture), as well as put different pickups there.
                    Well, the lookouts may or may not have blasted walls among them (which allows players to get on to the corridors - Busted roofs on corridors would be a nice addition. (: ) and there can be shipment boxes in the corridors, making them unique to each other. And since I'm not a full fledged level/map designer/creator, I'd leave that to your hands.. (:
                    Tiny Details That Should NOT Be Forgotten & Dynamic Arenas & UT4 Storyline - Story Design & Gametype Designs: Volleyball - 3-Way CTF & Smartphone/Tablet Integration

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Tycerax View Post
                      [ATTACH=CONFIG]2466[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]2507[/ATTACH]
                      I have about 5 notebooks full of these...thought I was the only one

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Click image for larger version

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                        I really, really hope you don't mind. I decided to sketch up a version of your design, but I've added a bit of Asymmetry and reduced the overall number of floors.

                        Also, sorry about my chicken scratch hand writing. The description says that the North and South walls have a ramp to the second story. The East wall has some kind of rubble that you can use to walk up to the third floor. The West wall has a first story entrance that leads to the bottom of the NW and SW towers. The NE and SE towers are closed off, and their access ramps sealed.

                        The third level consists of the tops of the corridors, with an outer wall that prevents players from exiting the map (obviously we'll use collision to prevent any trick jumping to get out).
                        Last edited by SwiftMalachi; 05-13-2014, 09:02 PM.
                        --------------------------------------
                        clstirens
                        Level Designer

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by khxmz View Post
                          I have about 5 notebooks full of these...thought I was the only one
                          Me too, i just never had time to map them also i think my dad threw away my map notebook.
                          History: UT99 (2003 - 2007; 2009 - Now) UT2k4: (2005-2007), UT3 (2008-2009)
                          UT Nicknames: Shotman, HeatWave, MY_KID
                          UT Clan: -={SDA}=- (Sniping Death Angles) and zsu (Zark Snipers United)
                          UT Main Menu Design

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by SwiftMalachi View Post
                            [ATTACH=CONFIG]2603[/ATTACH]

                            I really, really hope you don't mind. I decided to sketch up a version of your design, but I've added a bit of Asymmetry and reduced the overall number of floors.

                            Also, sorry about my chicken scratch hand writing. The description says that the North and South walls have a ramp to the second story. The East wall has some kind of rubble that you can use to walk up to the third floor. The West wall has a first story entrance that leads to the bottom of the NW and SW towers. The NE and SE towers are closed off, and their access ramps sealed.

                            The third level consists of the tops of the corridors, with an outer wall that prevents players from exiting the map (obviously we'll use collision to prevent any trick jumping to get out).
                            I have a dynamic level design in mind and I can see that two of maps can merge with each other. Let me quote that message. (Thread Link)
                            Originally posted by Tycerax View Post
                            With dynamic arena I don't mean "destructible arenas"; I mean that, while playing something happens and changes the terrain. For example, let's say the arena is located near a volcano and a river. Sometime later volcano erupts and lava flows into the arenas certain points and follows a certain path. When lava comes, players will be unable to traverse certain paths but at the same time, there will be new paths because when lava gets to the river, there will be another layout in the same game/map. With this, it'll be like playing a new map without leaving one. Maps with multiple "instances" may be selected individually (like Arena1, Arena2...)
                            Of course, this can be turned off/on as individual settings.
                            - Arena 1 is my design, where map is symmetrical and there are minor differences (busted roofs on corridors for example) to compensate that.
                            - After a certain amount of time, (let's say) an air raid drastically changes my symmetrical layout to your asymmetrical layout. Corridors become rubble, acid filled floors restricts players in certain areas, maze shrinks a bit due to the fire, so on and so forth. So it's two layouts intertwined. (:

                            Other than that, nice design. (:
                            Tiny Details That Should NOT Be Forgotten & Dynamic Arenas & UT4 Storyline - Story Design & Gametype Designs: Volleyball - 3-Way CTF & Smartphone/Tablet Integration

                            Comment


                              #15
                              From my experiance drawing on paper with lines is bad.
                              it looks cool on paper but when getting it blocked out in the engine the scale and everything just feels wrong also the line of sight lengths your creating are often to long and not intended.
                              just my 2 cents.
                              - ZixXer - Environment artist - Trigger happy - UT fan -

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