Level Design Toolbox (Co-Op, Stealth)
– Players can walk.
– Players can run.
– Players can launch each other.
Environmental Level Rules
– 3 Levels of height (half-cover, full cover, 2x full cover).
– Have spots where the player can get launched to and provide vision.
– Have less safe space for the player on the bottom.
– Make sure to limit sight lines for the players on the bottom.
– Continuous Patrol
This level was created a co-op stealth game. I started pretty early on with the level design. Our goal with this level was to give the player dynamic ways to use the mechanics and give him a lot of choice of where to go to.
The goal for this level was to force the players to launch each other and pass information off to each other. In normal stealth levels it should always be fair and predictable where the enemies are at all times. But because of the mechanic we implemented I wanted to make it a bit more unfair so the player is forced to use the tools he has at his disposal.
– Sketchup Layout
We already established our mechanics early on which was being able to launch one another so we wanted to create a small level with tight sightlines to test this mechanic and see how well the trading of information worked between players.
We first tired experimenting with two types of designs, one with more open space and another which was tighter and had a lot more restricted sightlines.
A bit of a more open level ended up was what we eventually chose for.
After testing our mechanics, we moved on to make the actual map. I already worked out a full level that we could implement but after discussing it with the team the level was too large so I downscaled it.
The level is divided into three main areas:
– Main hall
The introduction part is to learn players the mechanics and give them knowledge on how to tackle the next challenge.
The main hall is the main challenge of the level and here there is a lot more open space from which the players can navigate through.
The exit is the final part of the challenge, because you respawn at the start of the level I didn’t want to make it overtly complex but it shouldn’t be a cakewalk.
Incorporating Mechanics in the Level Design
I tried to create vantage points for the player where they can oversight over the next part of the level and they can guide each other.
For the AI positioning, I tried to get as much coverage as possible so the player always has to be on alert.
The AI positioning is also a bit more unfair opposed to normal stealth games because we have the mechanic that allows players to gain more vision and that way it forces them te be more cautious and actually make use of the mechanic.
Throughout development we had some iterating on the level itself. We had one particular level we liked but had to be scrapped because it couldn’t be realised in the amount of time we had. This level was more rectangular than the final one. Giving the player a bit more freedom but it turned out to be too time consuming so we had to condence it down.