Level Design

I’ve been in the midst of creating levels for our upcoming game, Dukes and Dirigibles.

It is an exciting process, but not without trepidation. I usually start each level with a theme in mind – maybe the level is focused on a particular style of layout, or heavy/light on certain enemies. Shortly after I start though I usually begin to fear that my idea for the level was all wrong, or at best unachievable. Maybe the level is too tight for the airships, maybe it’s too big and feels vacant, or maybe the flow just isn’t what I anticipated.

Pushing through this stage, however, leads me to enjoyable part. Once I accept what can and cannot be accomplished in a given play space I begin to move past seeing limitations and into seeing opportunities. At this point the personality of the level truly reveals itself and its construction suddenly seems easy. Well, maybe not easy. :)

Consistently I find myself thinking, “This is the best one yet!” A judgment based heavily in the moment, but not insincere. Which levels will pan out to be my (and/or the fans’) favorites, I cannot say. But it is encouraging that I become excited to see each new level in-play, and have yet to feel let down by the results.