Programmer Art

 

The above screenshot may look familiar to anyone who visited our station during Nordic Game Indie Night – Juha built this level especially for the event. In terms of visual quality, it looks similar to the demo levels although some of our new animation features make it more vibrant when in motion.

While we constantly evolve our tools to streamline the process, getting even a small puzzle to a state like this takes a lot of time, which is why our development levels look pretty different…

These are screenshots from our in-development levels, we make them to try out different ideas for puzzles and see if they are playable and fun. Very little – if any – data is kept, but as it mostly a matter of tweaking the system and getting a sense of the space we need for a puzzle the knowledge we gain from them is the important part.

When building these levels, we only draw out physics, place game objects and – in some cases – write scripts to handle specific interactions. The temporary art is generated automatically and activated with a keypress, for the game objects we have a small cache of different images that we can use to signify functionality.

All of the art in these screenshots is temporary save for the player character, but since we are playtesting these levels they need to communicate the functionality of game objects. We also added some texture and color to the temporary art to help differentiate different levels from each other.

5 Responses

  1. WC says:

    Programming art is my biggest problem when developing. I can’t stand the sight of my horrible, horrible art, and yet I know I need to use it to get the basics down first. Conquering this problem has been my biggest task so far.

    • Juha Kangas says:

      I think a lot of people have this same problem. I guess our way through this hurdle was that our demo sort of proves our final art and now we feel confident that the game can look good in the end even if we only have programmer art at the moment.

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