Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Level 4 was another one of those very early concepts that evolved over the years. The basic idea was to make a level using assets similar to those from the first area of the game and transport them into a grainy black and white movie world. Everything in the middleground was in silhouette and this idea lasted until we brought the game over to WiiWare. For gameplay purposes silhouetting simply wasn't going to work; there was just too much going on and you wouldn't be able to tell what's what.

Below is a rough timeline showing how the look changed (click for full size):

Note that this isn't a complete, comprehensive look at the silhouette theme. I want to show how the cloudy silhouette theme changed. In a future post I will show discarded areas and different versions of this theme, and the Torque Eduardo screenshot is a glimpse of that.

As usual, very few assets were used to make up this level. Many of them based on assets from level 1.

(click for full size)

Below is a reference mock-up using final assets.

(click for full size)

And here's an in-game screenshot from the final game:

(click for full size)

The grain is exaggerated in the screenshots--don't ask why. It should look more subtle on your tv screen. Of course, as it always happens, whenever I look back at the game I feel like changing this and that and in this case toning down that grain a bit. But that's okay, I'm satisfied with the end result all things considered. Take what you learn from the past and apply it to whatever you do next, right?


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

ASSETS: Levels 2 & 3

Level 2 and 3 both have assets based on those from the first area. Long ago in one version of Eduardo we were going to split up levels into worlds-levels, similar to something like Super Mario Bros. 3. World 1 would have its own theme, world 2 its own theme, etc. This carried over into the final version of Eduardo in a couple of ways: the first three levels and then the final level which is split up into four parts. At one point we had a bamboo world with three different variations and I hope to delve into that later on.

I've mentioned in previous blog posts about how my own process of asset creation changed over the years, and level 2 represents an example of some older sensibilities. I was inspired by some Japanese woodblock prints for this level, for the background sky and the bridge which you happen upon toward the end of the level. By "inspire" I mean that I rather shamelessly recreated the bridge from one particular print:

I changed it a bit but it was a pretty close recreation done in photoshop. If I were to do something like that today it would look completely different, and most likely be done on paper first. I always try to improve my processes and techniques, and this is an example of learning from working.

So just like level 1, level 2 had to use very few assets, shown below (not pictured: the overlays used, which in most cases were the same ones from the first level).

(click for full size)

Concept image using assets from the game:
(click for full size)

Onto level 3.

Similar as before, but as the only vertically-scrolling level I decided to add a few more hills for the parallax layers. I rather like the way this one came out. It's also the only level where I didn't create the background from scratch. It worked best to use a real space photograph and add a bit of color to the bottom of it.

(click for full size)

That's all for now!