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Concept to Flash Implementation

Using the Shallow Sea as an example, here is the progress a level goes through from rough pencil sketches all the way through to a final, traversable environment.

First off through several meetings, we decide on all the elements of the level from what theme we'd like to create, the gameplay flow of an area, and ideas for landmarks, roads or anything else that defines the environment. The level design can change during production, and has a degree of flexibility until we land on a final result.

As you can see in the early concept stages, a grid in the same proportion as the 780 x 505 pixel rooms are used for laying out objects, determining how each room will transition to the next, along with their overall composition. This is an important step. The giant seahorse skeleton that you walk on for example was formed so each section of its body flowed cleanly into the next room, and the spot you transition over to the inside of the shell is located at the center of a room.

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The pencil concepts then get a color treatment to be used for reference in creating the template geometry and ultimately, the finished 3D models. This level's beautiful painting was done by the artist Jen Zee.

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Once all the final geometry and textures for the area are created, each room is rendered and composited together in Flash. On top of this, the individual assets that you can walk in front and behind sit on top. I'll explain this process in more detail in the future.

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This last image taken from Flash scaled at 25% shows what the level actually looks like in game without the colored water filter.

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More to come next week--

Previous topics:
Overview of Environment Art Pipeline
Thats awesome~

EDIT: OMGOMGOMG First post o-o
DragonKazooie89's avatar

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Neat. It's nice to know this stuff because I'll be entering the game-making business (hopefully) when I graduate this fall.
Chokin's avatar

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I think these threads are really interesting.
It's so cool to see how it's all done.

Can't wait to see what's next. ;3
Arwen's avatar

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LiXKuja's avatar

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Each stage pic was amazing, it got more beautiful as it was built. Now we know how long it really does take, a lot of work.
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First page! -cough-

That's so awesome, Mavdoc! So that's how you guys make Shallow Seas, as well as all the other areas in zOMG!

I love how you guys are getting more involved with the zOMG community by showing us behind the scenes stuff!
Valheita's avatar

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It's so much prettier without the water texture.

Not that it isn't always pretty mind >.>;;
Patrick Jiuliani's avatar

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Its very interesting to see how certain aspects of the design change over time and I still cant get over how good things look those geometric shapes. Do certain steps like this get done for the small environmental items as well such as the trees rocks or coral or are those all done in 2d
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Nice!!! It's astounding seeing all the work you guys put into creating zOMG. Great work on the Easter event btw 3nodding

*goes and stares at the maps more*
gataka's avatar

Familiar Lunatic

Sweet! >.<
"[...]anything else that defines the environment"
Does this include any particular challenges an area's geometry might induce?
Or is this part of the "gameplay flow"?

With this new insight, I'll draw up my own areas.
It’s nice to see the area as a whole instead of a series of  "780 x 505 pixel rooms".
And I love how Jen Zee colors things.
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wow that is awesome.
I can't believe so much goes into it!
Clear Rainx-'s avatar

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That is soo awesome.
Wow, so much detail!
Celeste Chantecler's avatar

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