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Genre: Action Adventure

Platforms: PC – Oculus VR (Rift + Touch)

Tools Used: Unreal Engine 4, Perforce

Production Time: 4 weeks

Team Size: 4 Game Designers, 4 3D Artists, 2 2D Artists

Role: Lead Level Design, Gameplay Design

Escape from Castle Galdor

You are a wizard, imprisoned in a castle filled with magic and strange enemies like slimes and stationary guardian systems. Cook your own spells such as Fireball to defeat your enemies and escape!

Early on in the project we knew that we wanted to have at least three different spells which the player would cook using different recipes and ingredients.

With this in, mind I decided that some sort of HUB area would make a lot of sense, starting with the prison area.

On the left is the view the player is presented with when they start the game, inside their prison cell, to give the player a feel of being imprisoned and setting the tone for the rest of the game.

From this prison area, the player can see the outside of the castle, the courtyard area after the cooking room and on the way out there is a window into the Fire area.

This area is designed to be small and will naturally lead the player to the next important part of the game.

After exiting the starting area, the player is introduced to one out of two key areas of the game, the cooking room.

In here, we teach the player to cook their own spells using various ingredients, the scroll on the wall shows what one needs to make the spell in question.

When the player has figured out how to make the first spell and exit using it, they enter the HUB area which leads to the first area, the Ice area.

This is what the player sees when first entering the HUB, after leaving the cooking room.

The area itself is somewhat small but still houses all the important parts, with initial easier slimes to learn how to attack using spells and explore in different ways.

From here, the player will go to the Ice area to get the next ingredient, cook a new spell and then go through the HUBto the Fire area, get that ingredient and make the last Lightning spell and survive a gauntlet before escaping!

The whole level was made using modular pieces, as seen in picture number 5.

Post-Mortem

With my first VR project, I felt that I really learned how to contain the gameplay within a smaller area while keeping it fun and interesting with the different layouts of each area, the environments and mechanics. I also quickly realized how important it was for players in VR to be able to recognize where they are, more so than on PC, thus I felt that these criterias together would make sense with a smaller level using a hub.