Originally Published: 11/04/2016
When I started using Doom builder I found the controls quite challenging, particularly the change of WASD to ESDF when in view mode. Originally, I wanted to design a level that revolved around varying levels of a central hub. After realising the limitations though, I quickly changed my design to something more flowing and looping. I wanted players to keep seeing the goal they we moving towards every time they returned to the central hub.
I wanted my experience with the editor to inform the plans I had for level design in our prototype, however, after exploring through some of the limitations I realised I would not be able to do this. However, I was able to apply the lessons on limitations to using the terrain tool to build or prototype. It is an interesting step to working within the limitations of a particular software; after moving from some extraordinary 3D modeling tools to something so limited, it offers a valuable learning curve for creativity. This was probably the best lesson Doom builder taught me, to not think of tool restrictions as limitations but rather as modifiers, restrictions that allow you to explore creative solutions.
As a key component, I wanted to make the floor lava. This adds an environmental danger to the player, rather than just the threat of monsters. Falling into these lava pits, which line the paths in the central hub, kill the player, forcing them to restart.
Two key cards are located around the map, with props such as hanging torsos being used to almost accent their locations and to draw the player over to them. The reason that these keycard locations are so emphasised is that there is a point during the level that punishes those that have not explored the level by locking them in a room if they haven’t got a keycard.
The first chamber houses a Demon, which has been positioned strategically as to provide the danger of both it damaging you and pushing you into the lava. This felt appropriate to incorporate the environmental hazards that I have put in place with the combat.
Toward the second chamber, I have distributed a lot of health, implying future combat and allowing the player to retrace their steps and heal if needs be.The next big challenge is for the player to time their shots to take out former human’s and former sergeants, managing both their health and ammo supplies while trying to take these out
While not a complex level, it still poses a challenge to amateur Doom players like myself. And while the level I designed has some basic functionality I wish that I had spent more time adding and exploring better aesthetics for the design. It was admittedly a rushed job. All that being said, 10/10 for fun assignment.