Graveyard Development
Design Objectives
  • Creating a dark/spooky environment, whilst ensuring identification of opponents and dodgeballs becomes instinctive

  • To involve 2 different types of environmental hazards, constructing a unique and different feel for each arena

  • To design a layout without the use of 90 degree corners, no large assets and no surprise, life depleting hazards​

Experiment (Concept/Whitebox)
Taking My Chosen Design into Whitebox (3)
Play Test Results
​After conducting play-testing sessions with my piers, the main issues were:
 
1. Lack of Ricochets shots

- Circular boundaries made it difficult for players to predict where a ricochet shot would land

2. Awkward Jump Distances

- Players could not easily read the point of take off to successfully clear a jump  

3. Frequent Hazard Danger

- Players found it difficult managing danger from both players and environment simultaneously 

4. Uninteresting Scenery

- The surrounding environment lacked variation, and visually mundane to look at ​

Problems to Solve
(1) - Lack of Ricochet Shots

Other than players standing next to the boundary edge, successful ricochet shots were a lot harder to come by as dodgeballs would often roll against the wall instead of bouncing back into play.

(2) - Awkward Jump Distances

Depending on the character selected, the take off point for the jump would be different. This caused most problems with the fastest rated character as the most predictable take off point would result in failure.

(3) - Frequent Hazard Danger

Although adding additional features gave each arena more uniqueness, when analysing the play test session it was evident that players had to deal with too many stimuli whilst competing against each other.

Danger Zones
(4) - Uninteresting Scenery

Even though what happening in the centre of the arena was most important, players expressed that they felt the environment could have visually offered something more.

Iteration Upon Play Tests
Solutions to the Problems Faced
​1. Combination of Flat Surfaced Boundaries

- An increased danger of ricochet shots meant players now gravitated more towards the centre arena

2. Appropriate Jump Distances

- Distance of graves has now been positioned in respect to both fastest, and slowest playable characters

3. Reduced Hazard Danger

- Number of fall damage hazards has been halved, making each grave a one time event after each use

4. Interesting Outer Scenery

- Reducing the number of trees with 2 main outer structures gives the environment a more lively appeal

These changes produced a contrast between the type of threat to expect on the outskirts, and the centre arena. This differentiation of danger zones opens up the possibility for different play styles to be introduced.

Slow moving characters with effective long range will roam the outskirts of the arena, whilst the quick, short range characters will manoeuvre around the centre, using tombstones as cover and the empty graves as bait.

The static mud hazard has now been replaced with a gradually moving fog. Not only does it make players think about where to move too, if caught out, can disrupt a players jump over a grave, causing them to fall down.

Final Screenshot