Progress: 12/13/2021

This is a project I've been working on for quite some time. I'm not an artist, and I don't have a huge amount of experience in level design, but I'm absolutely a good engineer if I do say so myself. So, I've taken my strengths to start building something using whatever existing content I can find to bolster up my weaknesses.

I've put in about a year of spotty work - it's all done in my spare time and very inconsistently. Most of the work has been setting up systems for later use - my engineering background coming into play. Things like a dialogue system, combat design, level design tools (camera triggers, "object fade" triggers, encounter managers, etc). There are a number of little editor tools that I've built to facilitate things as well.

Almost anything "artistic" aside from a handful of materials, effects, and models was pulled from the Unreal marketplace or other free sources. It's both impressive and disappointing what you can build with purely an engineering background. I have a budget that one day I'll be using to commission bespoke work - in the meantime, generic assets is what I'm working with. Being a passion project rather than my career means I have all the time in the world so there's no rush.

The video below is two short levels - I actually have a few others that are in various states of blockout, but these are the most "complete". I'm using that term very lightly - these two levels are still absolutely in the blockout stage, but they are more than literal grey boxes. There's some level and dialogue scripting in place, some placeholder cinematic sequences, and a whole lot more that I'm likely forgetting to mention. It's hard to show off something in this state, but I'm proud of what I've done so far.

Additional Credits:

  • This work is built on Unreal Engine 5
  • Music (c) Hayden Folker under the CC BY license - I needed some placeholder tracks to test music systems and there's a lot of good stuff here.
  • My good friend @NelHex who has been helping me out with some concept art, and drew the only placeholder dialogue portrait that isn't just a white square.
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