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Petrograd: an action-thriller first person shooter. Enter the shoes of a Black-Ops Special Agent, investigating the disappearance of a full city's population overnight. An eerie atmosphere and immersive environments are just the beginning, nothing is quite what it seems in this suspenseful experience set in post-USSR Eastern Europe. The purpose of this project was to create a trailer with near triple-A quality, that goal was achieved on Feb 2009, and thus this project has concluded. The studio has since turned pro and continues to produce commercial games. Thanks for you support.
A brief look at environment design using the CryEngine Sandbox editor.
Posted by ben72227 on Sep 19th, 2008
Intermediate Level Design/Theory.
Hey everybody I've gotten some questions regarding level design and working with CryEngine. I am the lead level designer for the Petrograd mod, so I thought I would post this to let everybody see some of the work I do for the Petrograd mod.
For this first post, I'm going to talk about how I design environments - for this example I will do a quick and simple design of a city street.
First I start off by painting the textures - my vision for this street is a small boulevard with a landscaped median in the middle of it. So I'm going to paint textures for the street and the median.
Next I want to add some brushes to the environment - so I'll add some apartment buildings, a sidewalk and curb, some utility boxes and a small bus stop.
Now I want to add a few entities (which are objects with physics properties and such) - so I place them into the environment. I add some light poles and some phone booths.
So now we have a pretty decent environment, a few good brushes anyway. But it looks pretty barren. So, what am I to do? I know - I'll add some vegetation. First, I put a few big trees in.
Looks better - but it could still use some more detail I think - so I add a few small shrubs to round it out.
Ok - so now I have the vegetation out of the way. Looking at my progress so far - it looks good, but I still have work to do. At this point, I start to focus on the small details. A very easy way to add detail to environments is by using decals. So I put some decals on the street to make it look more like a street. Some patches to the pavement, a manhole, and a storm drain.
I put some street lights in earlier - but I felt that they were missing something - so I add some powerlines to connect them.
And with that - I'm done with the building of my simple street environment. Here is a screenshot of my progress so far:
It looks fairly decent...but I decide that I want to have this particular environment be part of a night-time level. So I change the time of day settings to night-time.
Only problem is - there aren't any lights lol! So I add some lights.
And with that, I'm basically done with this simple environment. Now I need to export this to the engine so that it will be playable in-game. I always like to see how things look in different modes - so I render the environment in wireframe mode and sketch mode before I export to the engine.
Everything looks good to me - so I go ahead and export to the engine. The final render looks like this:
And so there you have it. Well, this is the end of my first post. I've never done a blog like this before so I'm eager to see how you guys respond. If the response is positive I will probably do another post in the future. I hope you enjoy and learn something from this!
-Benjamin Thatcher (ben72227)