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Some1_Call_911

3D FPS Puzzle tips

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Hi, I''m new to the GameDev forums and I hope I will be welcomed here. Anyways, I have recently started development on a singleplayer modification for the Half-Life engine. My level designing skills are great, I just have a hard time thinking up puzzles. My levels seem so linear because of my lack of difficult/unique puzzles. I was wondering if anybody here who was familiar with the Quake 2 or Half-Life engine could give me some pointers or maybe even links to articles about creating puzzles for FPS. I have played many Half-Life singleplayer mods and even Half-Life''s own singleplayer but I have a hard time coming up with puzzle ideas. I need a little inspiration because I''m no good at coming up with or designing puzzles. - Some1_Call_911 Some1_call_911@canada.com http://www.911maps.tk

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Just a pretty obvious one: Have a series of doors all connected to separate switches set up so that you''ll only be able to go through the hallway if all the switches are in the correct position to open the doors. Now don''t bother to place all the switches all over the level, because then it''d simply become another "kill ''em all, hit the switch, backtrack".... Place all the switches near each other, for example as a security station''s keypad. Now the challenge for you as the designer is to find a way to hint to the player what the code is, without forcing trial and error.

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Thanks, Melraidin.
I sort of expected more help from a game development community. Well anyway, I hope more people help me out or else I'll have to look for yet another Game/Mod Development community. (I don't mean that as a threat or anything, I mean I don't want to go searching for help anywhere else because I like GameDev) I also don't expect help from everyone or anything, I just think if you can suggest something don't overlook my post, please. At least give a brief idea. I'm not asking for much


- Some1_Call_911
Some1_call_911@canada.com
http://www.911maps.tk

[edited by - Some1_Call_911 on July 27, 2002 12:55:31 AM]

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anything can be a puzzle. The only requirement is: make the player think to either: a)advance in the game b)give bonus(items, secret level, etc).

But the point here is really the mental challenge; making the player think. Making him spend some time on something. That''s a puzzle.

Or it could be a skills challenge too. (Althought skill challenges aren''t that fun in fps, imo, but it''s essential anyways, to provide some variety and freshness)

If you''re looking for inspiration, play Zelda 64. The puzzles are right into your face, you can''t miss em.

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room full of toy chests or just chests and the key is one. Find the key to the door and than move chests around to find the key?

JK 2, you had remember the color coded key to open the door. Something like that!

Max Payne, You have to shoot the wires down to win!


I am like you 911 no clue to making up puzzles!

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Environmental puzzles are the best. Have the goal in view, and have them find a way to it. "Half-Life" did that to great effect in the office complex areas. Have the exit in view, but blocked.

Key puzzles are old school, and still have a place in this day and age, but shouldn''t be used exclusively.

Gather puzzles (get X, Y, Z and bring them here to open door there) are a modification of key puzzles, and are being used more.

Multiple solution puzzles are really good as well. See "Deux Ex" for examples.

Don''t do pixel hunt puzzles. If your player needs to use/get something, make it obvious to the player with lighting/texture/etc.

Don''t do platform jumping puzzles. They really don''t belong in first-person.



RomSteady - Able to leap off tall buildings in a single bound

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