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TheTurkishMoose

Is my project proof enough of professionalism and talent?

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Thanks for taking the time to read!

 

Currently, I've been working on a project for 4 months and plan to have a BETA by Christmas and to have a finished product by mid-2018. The project is an unofficial, non-profit expansion of a AAA game. What I'm releasing would be created with the official dev tools released by the developers. It will have to be launched via the game itself. I've decided to keep this project under wraps and publicise it when ready!

 

My aims with this project is to show evidence of professional design and concepts, hard work and commitment to a project, to build a reputation for myself and to be able to show people what I've made and leave them with no doubts about my talent. I hope to start work in the industry as a Level-Designer.

 

The project is a large, open-world, urban location. There are various "sectors" within the map to showcase different styles of architecture and contextual decoration design. The game is 3D and of a high graphical quality including particle systems, heavy post-processing, high-res textures, high-poly meshes and detailed character, AI and animation design. These assets are all offered within the dev tools but are ungrouped, unorganised and in a "raw" state I guess you could say.

 

My project will show evidence of:

- Planning

- Optimisation

- Scripting

- Navmesh

- Detailed Sound Design

- Story boarding

- Cinematics

- Advanced lighting

- New features and game-play mechanics

- Factual research

- Architectural design

- Publicity

- Being prudent

- Long term commitment

 

But is this project enough? Things that will be missing is the initial steps of production such as alpha testing as I'm already working with a functional game with thousands of assets. Will people take me seriously or just call me an over-ambitious "modder", even though I'm doing more than sheer modding. What I'm attempting is a risk but I am confident in the level of professionalism and can explain all the fundamental aspects of design and the production process to show that I know what I'm doing. Also, I hope to bring a large audience to play my creation and show evidence of how I publicised my creation.

 

Please be completely honest with your comments. I'm currently in a tough part of my life where I've just graduated from University and have admitted to myself that I've been in denial about what I want to do.

Edited by TheTurkishMoose

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Thanks for taking the time to read! Currently, I've been working on a project for 4 months and plan to have a BETA by Christmas and to have a finished product by mid-2018. The project is an unofficial, non-profit expansion of a AAA game. I've decided to keep this project under wraps and publicise it when ready! My aims with this project is to show evidence of professional design and concepts, hard work and commitment to a project, to build a reputation for myself and to be able to show people what I've made and leave them with no doubts about my talent. But is this project enough?

 

Without seeing the project itself, there is no way to tell. Just from the part of your comment that describes the project "unofficial, non-profit expansion of a AAA game", you should be able to see yourself that this pretty much can mean anything. It can mean that you put minecraft-meshes into a low-quality randomesque ARMA-mod, or you could've created a 10 hour high quality GTA-expansion - which makes a huuuge difference.

 

I think if you want to get see if "this project is enough", you'll have to actually show it. Without that, all I can tell you: It strongly depends on the project itself.

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The project is an unofficial, non-profit expansion of a AAA game.

 

This is a red flag for me. Personally, I don't look favorably on projects that use other people's intellectual property and I know that several others who feel the same. Not everybody does, and it's possible that your actual project, were I able to see it, wouldn't actually be doing that. But this description certainly makes it sound like it might be.

 

But is this project enough?

 

Without seeing your project and knowing what career path you want to pursue, there's not much I can tell you about how "impressive" this project would be.

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This is a red flag for me. Personally, I don't look favorably on projects that use other people's intellectual property and I know that several others who feel the same. Not everybody does, and it's possible that your actual project, were I able to see it, wouldn't actually be doing that. But this description certainly makes it sound like it might be.

 

 

What I'm releasing would be created with the official dev tools released by the developers. It will have to be launched via the game itself.

 


 

Without seeing your project and knowing what career path you want to pursue, there's not much I can tell you about how "impressive" this project would be.
Without seeing the project itself, there is no way to tell. Just from the part of your comment that describes the project "unofficial, non-profit expansion of a AAA game", you should be able to see yourself that this pretty much can mean anything. It can mean that you put minecraft-meshes into a low-quality randomesque ARMA-mod, or you could've created a 10 hour high quality GTA-expansion - which makes a huuuge difference.

 

 Okay well I guess I can tell you more without comprising any information. First off, I hope to enter the industry with a career as a level-designer.

 

The project is a large, open-world, urban location. There are various "sectors" within the map to showcase different styles of architecture and contextual decoration design. The game is 3D and of a high graphical quality including particle systems, heavy post-processing, high-res textures, high-poly meshes and detailed character, AI and animation design. These assets are all offered within the dev tools but are ungrouped, unorganised and in a "raw" state I guess you could say.

 

My project will show evidence of:

- Planning

- Optimisation

- Scripting

- Navmesh

- Detailed Sound Design

- Story boarding

- Cinematics

- Advanced lighting

- New features and game-play mechanics

- Factual research

- Architectural design

- Publicity

- Being prudent

- Long term commitment

 

I'll put this in the initial post also

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What I'm releasing would be created with the official dev tools released by the developers. It will have to be launched via the game itself.

 

Okay, so as long as you're not using assets from some other game, only those you've created yourself or those that were part of the original game, that probably keeps you clear of the IP violation hurdle.

 

It does make your project harder to evaluate, because for any one item somebody sees that looks awesome, they have to determine if you actually did that if you just leveraged something else that was already available. The former is more impressive than the latter, but it's often to determine.

 

There are various "sectors" within the map to showcase different styles of architecture and contextual decoration design

 

This is probably good, as it can demonstrate your range as a level designer.

 

The game is 3D and of a high graphical quality including particle systems, heavy post-processing, high-res textures, high-poly meshes and detailed character, AI and animation design.

 

This, on the other hand, is largely irrelevant to the task of demonstrating you're a good level designer. The ability to do these things is a plus, but you could be amazing at all of these together and it wouldn't amount to anything if your actual level design skills were poor.

 

 

 

 

My project will show evidence of:

 

You think that. But what you think constitutes evidence of those things and what professionals think constitutes evidence of those things are probably very different.

 

Of these things, what's important is probably "planning," "scripting," "architectural design" and "gameplay mechanics." The rest is largely irrelevant and/or not actually as possible to judge based on one project as you might think.

 

As an aspiring level designer you want to focus first on creating playable spaces, spaces that permit the gameplay in question to happen, and more than that, to shine. Most other things are secondary to that: the ability of a space to look nice, artistically, to feel lived in and real, is important, but only to the point where it props up and supports the gameplay and the art style desired. 

 

If your project can show that you have a mind for that kind of spatial thinking, then it will be a worthy addition to your portfolio. If it can't, or if you let that get overshadowed by attempts to do everything, it will probably hurt you more than it will help you.

 

It will never be enough, on it's own; you'll never get a job based on one demonstration project alone. But if you focus on the things a level designer should, and not on the extra cruft, it will probably be a benefit to you.

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It does make your project harder to evaluate, because for any one item somebody sees that looks awesome, they have to determine if you actually did that if you just leveraged something else that was already available. The former is more impressive than the latter, but it's often to determine.

 

For example: A building would be made of segments. There are various skins to experiment with and thousands of decals and minor details which can be used to ensure that every building looks realistic and unique. I've also created custom buildings using preexisting segments which are well optimised and without a doubt, a new addition to the game. There is also a feature integral to the game-play which I can't really mention which relies on smart and innovative architectural design.

 

This, on the other hand, is largely irrelevant to the task of demonstrating you're a good level designer. The ability to do these things is a plus, but you could be amazing at all of these together and it wouldn't amount to anything if your actual level design skills were poor.

 

I was just replying to an earlier comment from Juliean. I'm just letting you know what I'm working with and setting the scene without releasing what the project is.

 

spaces that permit the gameplay

 

Just this line alone is the main focus of this project due to the nature of the game-play.

 

As for the standard and variance of design skills... well you'll just have to wait until release! So far, the comments you have made have invested me with confidence that what I'm doing is plenty to show my skill. My main concern is with the fact that I'm using dev tools and not an engine where I would have to start from scratch. But all the skills and things I'm doing are relevant to both. I guess this is something I can address with a smaller project later.

 

Thanks Josh

Edited by TheTurkishMoose

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Is my project proof enough of professionalism and talent?


No. It proves you can make a mod. It does not prove you're talented in a
general way. It does not prove that you have a professional attitude and
comportment. If you want to showcase your level design chops, make several
levels (mods of more than one game), rather than one huge oeuvre. And
some of your levels should be made together with other people, so you can
prove your ability to work well with others.

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TheTurkishMoose, on 09 Feb 2017 - 1:40 PM, said: The project is an unofficial, non-profit expansion of a AAA game.   This is a red flag for me. Personally, I don't look favorably on projects that use other people's intellectual property and I know that several others who feel the same. Not everybody does, and it's possible that your actual project, were I able to see it, wouldn't actually be doing that. But this description certainly makes it sound like it might be.

 

If the project was a mod or something this is less harmful, especially if the game featured and supported modding. Still re-inventing someone else's IP is a hard point to sell to someone looking to hire.

For mine own opinion, the only telling part it that you disclosed it, which is favorable to you, because I wouldn't be thinking that you would take other people's IP without crediting them. This is a BIG NO NO in the business.

 

Furthermore, links or screenshots at a minimum would help actually get an accurate response. For all we know this is just a write up and it is hard to not find someone with a similar "idea" or project.

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If the project was a mod or something this is less harmful, especially if the game featured and supported modding. Still re-inventing someone else's IP is a hard point to sell to someone looking to hire.

For mine own opinion, the only telling part it that you disclosed it, which is favorable to you, because I wouldn't be thinking that you would take other people's IP without crediting them. This is a BIG NO NO in the business.

 

Furthermore, links or screenshots at a minimum would help actually get an accurate response. For all we know this is just a write up and it is hard to not find someone with a similar "idea" or project.

 

 

Of course I would give credit where it's due and ensure that no one is thinking that I'm stealing someones work and making it my own.

 

I may not be able to get an accurate response now but on the hypothetical idea that I do fulfil all my goals to a professional standard, then this would be a useful step to showing that I can efficiently execute different aspects of level design. Still, more work would need to be done after but I have time and any time spent designing and learning is time spent well (in my opinion).

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