Preliminary Focus is a mod that takes place before the events of the original Portal, but under the influence of a different AI. The player will be introduced to many new testing elements throughout the duration of the mod, and will experience a smooth learning curve from beginning to end.
Today I show how far that our mod, Indestructible Core Intelligence has come; from the time when Blue & Bluer was hardly even serious about creating a mod, to the time where we are now.
Posted by Cadeη on Apr 7th, 2013
Back when Blue & Bluer had barely just been formed, and the select few members who had been using Hammer were complete and utter novices, I expressed my ambitions on how we should make this mod different, unique, and LOL EPIC SAUCE BRO. While to professional modders this could have meant completely redesigning Portal to something that never was, like Steampunk for instance, instead, my group decided that I meant something like "Make the lighting blue." Yeah, you heard me right. You might also want to note that when I say blue, I don't mean that lovely, atmospheric, cool shade commonly seen throughout the Modding community, I mean strait up 225 blue. I realized that making our test look like they'd been lit up by a generic black-light could be a potential problem, so I killed it.
Alright, "killed it" might have been an exaggeration: when I told my group that pure blue lighting wasn't really that innovative, and wasn't even really that good to look at, they said that they liked it and tried convincing me to keep it in. Eventually I convinced my group to replace it with something less seizure inducing.
Fortunately though, later on, when I began learning how to use Hammer myself, Portal Nerd (Thomas) whipped up a very innovative style to use in the mod. It combined light grey metals, light panels, and spotlights to form a 'different' type of futuristic look. We had also come up with a neat little core mechanic (literally) where the player would try to stick a "testing core" into a core receptacle to open up an exit or something like that. Of course, we were all very proud of it, and the community seemed to like it too.
But while this was really cool and all, I eventually decided against it; the grey metal textures were not very detailed, at all, and the Core mechanic was a little buggy; So in the end I just decided to go with a more Portal-like design. However, I do doubt I'll ever regret my choice of abandoning it.*
As you can see, we've come quite a long ways. And we finally settled on a look that most resembles Portal 2's co-op, with some slight improvisations. We're getting much better, not perfect, or anything really that amazing, but better. Even now we are all learning on how to improve our level design.
So please, if you have any advice on how we could improve our level design, do tell. It would please everyone working on the mod greatly (just don't forget to use fancy words, that would please us even more so).