• Announcements

    • khawk

      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

competitive multiplayer level design tips

2 posts in this topic

Hi everyone,


Would appreciate it if you gave me some tips in designing levels for a game I'm designing. It's a top down competitive multiplayer game. Players fight in an arena using projectiles and can acquire pick ups to assist them. The idea I had for the level design is something similar to fps multiplayer maps like halo or counter strike where the levels enhance the competitive experience. I'm really just looking for general level design tips, like a sort of check list of what i need to have in there, pit falls etc. Thanks in advance :)





Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think people will be able to better answer your question if you elaborate on what kind of game it is. I mean, the vision that I get from what you described is more than likely very different than what you actually had in mind. I'm imagining something akin to those old zombie flash games that used to be super popular, where WASD was your movement and you'd use the mouse to aim where you wanted to shoot. Except well, the obvious different is that there will more than likely be 'interesting' terrain, which is the topic of your conversation, and instead of zombies, other players to kill.

Some questions you might want to ask first though...

  • Are the players 'equal' at the beginning of the game? If that's not the case, is it something they can change during the match, or a permanent setting depending on the match? (IE, do they select a couple of different 'classes' that determine their base stats, or can they choose from one of five starting weapons, that kind of thing.)
  • What kind of power-ups do you want in the game? Are there only weapons to be collected, or are there other things like increased speed, extra health?
  • How is your hit system? One shot and you're dead, or is it more akin to having lots of health?
  • What are the game modes? This is probably the most important question in determining what the maps should look like as a whole.

I'm just kind of speaking my mind here, but these are probably some things that you want to keep in mind for a level design of a top down game.

  • You want to focus the action in a couple of key places, much like first person shooters. I know there are heat maps online (I know Bungie did this) and since you're experienced with Halo, you might be able to determine 'why' players were dying in those places so much. 
  • Power ups are central to the movement of the players. They always want to be moving (Unless there is a sight mechanic in the game where you can't see around corners / in dark spots) to another location to become stronger, find another man to kill, or otherwise run away from a bad fight. Power ups are where they're going to go.
  • Choke-points. Sometimes funneling players into tight corridors is the way to go. Huge open rooms are only so fun and strategic. That narrow hallway which contains the rocket launcher is not only appealing, but dangerous as well. You can bet lots of players are going to die near there.
  • Bases should be defend-able. Power ups or weapons should be aplenty for players who are killed and have to respawn, and perhaps even accessible only to the team who lives out of that base. (Force walls that only let them through but bullets can pass, something akin to that?
  • With a top down game implementing Z is, in my opinion, not all that intuitive unless everything takes place in doors and there's no way to interact with another level (besides moving between them), mainly because of graphical concerns. You can't see both a man up on a ledge and the guy right below him. Pitfalls I don't think are necessarily appropriate, but depending on your game, other kinds of traps certainly are!
  • Environmental Hazards. Are they a part of your game? Saw Blades, crusher traps, shifting walls, 'random' force fields that can be activated or that pop up? These can play a huge role in where players go, where they want to go, and where they can go without being turned inside out.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
What are the weapons? How do they interact with scenery? For example, the rocket launcher in Doom interacts with door frames in the most lethal way: it can only be used at rather long ranges, and it also needs a combination of wide open spaces and good aim. In a level consisting entirely of narrow twisty corridors, the rocket launcher is a dead weight.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0