Saturday, March 3, 2012

Game Design: Water Walker Prototype

This was an assignment to create a simple gameplay prototype using a nice learning curve and focusing on the design of the game, not so much the world/story/characters.  For my game, you are in a sewer-like system that is filled with dangerous acidic water.  You have a suit that allows to walk on top of the water to avoid getting hurt, however the suit is a prototype and requires frequent recharge using the gases of the sewer (in this case, they're glowing pick-ups).  You must escape this sewer by climbing your way to the exit.

Before building the prototype inside UDK, I sketched up some different puzzles that could be solved with a variety of difficulty levels.

Then, picking a few, I laid it all out.

The beginning allows the player to discover that the water is dangerous, giving them a little pool of it that can easily be avoided by jumping over it, or, if they decide to go in, jumping out of it.  The next step introduces the player to the pick-up, which will allow them to walk on water.  The area of water is too long for them to jump over and they will die before they able to swim across if they attempt that route.  They get the pick-up, and simply walk forward over the long area of water.  The next area is a puzzle, with a poster displayed three different colored lights in a certain order.  The lights are over the water, and the player must use the pick-up to hit each of the three lights to clear the path.  Next is the waterfall area, where the player learns they can also use the pick-up to climb up waterfalls.  The following area is a more advance use of the newly learned waterfall mechanic.  The player uses the pick-ups to climb the large waterfall, trying to get to a safe platform with another pick-up before theirs runs out.  After they climb the waterfall, they are rewarded with freedom.

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