1 week full-time. Created with Unreal Engine
DESIGN BASED ON NARRATIVE
I wanted to design this entire level around one given narrative, and make sure that narrative would blossom with each scene.
A DYNAMIC EXPERIENCE
Five Story-beats (seen in blue) and the exploration of these scenes help push the story through each of the three acts.
Short sequences and other gameplay elements, such as hide & sneak, create a more dynamic experience.
As seen below, I organized the flow to fit a 3-act structure.
I found it important to create surprise and keep the player hooked throughout the experience.
THE PLAYER EXPERIENCE
Next follow a depiction of the player exeprience through this narrative-driven level.
SETTING & MUSIC
The player start shipwrecked on this quiet island. Ahead, white rocks on the beach spell the word "farewell".
Music is a powerful tool in storytelling. For this level I choose "Safe Haven" by Inon Zur to set the atmosphere and mood.
Characters depicted in this story are gender neutral by purpose, to strengthen the immersion and avoid the sexism of stereotype characters.
In this first scene I wanted to reveal the Tech Genius who used to live here, but also hint to the carring partner who made fika and helped said Tech Genius to take important breaks.
Hologram, Log 57
The Tech Genius reprogram "War machine" into "Robopal", but also wish to reprogram war-memories out of self.
I wanted to highlight the carring partner's attempts to help, setting up a garden and being romantic. Here the player will have a first encounter with the hostile Robot AI called "Robopal", who instead of helping out in the garden now patrol the island searching for humans to kill. A little sneak gameplay brings the player to the bridge ahead.
Hologram, Missing Log Number
A farewell-letter from Tech Genuis, pleading to one day be forgiven for giving up.
SCENE 3 & 4
The bridge collapses and the player is forced to follow a dried-up stream to the seculded Fish Shed. Here I display the carring partner's violent death, crushed long ago by a boulder thrown by the hostile Robot AI.
Hologram, Log 68
Tech Genius sound hopeful, mentioning how "Robopal" show no sign of rebot and that the carring partner just finished building a garden. Tech Genuis wants to get better.
After this hologram the player have a second encounter with the hostile Robot AI, who chase the player through barricades (once set by carring partner to defend self against Robopal) to the first elevator.
Beside tech equipment and everything the player need to survive, the player may also notice large numbers of empty alcohol bottles once finished by carring partner after Tech Genuis' disappearence.
Hologram, Log 13
One of the first logs talking about the two of them discovering this lighthouse. Tech Genuis constructing the elevators and plans to reprogram "Warmachine", and the carring partner building their house and fishing down by the water.
In this last scene I wanted to show the uncontrollable greif of the carring partner, who can't stand all the memories sealed within the house.
The player may turn on the lighthouse light and find one last hologram.
Hologram, Log 102
Tech Genius list everything set up to help the carring partner survive. Mentions that "Robopal" still show no sign of rebot.
Now the water call Tech Genuis to let go.
A SILVER LINING
This is the sad story of a Tech Genius haunted by affiliations in war, and the carring partner who rescues said Tech Genius away to a new place and, for a time,
give the gift of relative peace.
This level might turn to semi-survival gameplay, while figuring out a way to get off the island. It could include nearby islands to discover and/or people coming across the lighthouse by ship or other means of transportation.
Could be a much older story hidden beneath the lighthouse.
I would like the player to come across more information regarding Charlie & Kim; what happened during the war, what did the carring partner do before meeting our Tech Genuis, and much more.