Nim

Role: Technical Level Designer

Development Time: 4 Weeks (2019)

Tools: Unreal Engine 4

Team: 12
 

Contributions:

  • Tutorial Level

  • Opening and End Cinematic

  • Initial Prototype

About

 

Nim is a Third-Person Puzzle Platformer with a Hook and Tethering Mechanic where the player can Tether Physics based Objects together in conjunction with a Swing Mechanic in order to traverse the environment. 

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Mechanics

Hook and Swing 

Swing Across gaps.

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Hook and Tether

Tether certain objects to anything in the environment.

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Slow Motion

Slow Down Time to easier Hook while flying fast

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Tutorial Level Design

Tutorial Level

Introduces the Mechanics and Components in ...


a Safe way with no enemies and plenty of checkpoints.

  • Each Mechanic gets introduced and then re-iterated with an evolution to solidify the learning process.
  • By keeping it linear, I could more easily predict where the player would look, which was crucial since it was decided that we had to use In-World Tutorial Prompts.





Tutorial Play Through
Complete Play through of the Entire game available Here

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Starting Area

The Secluded Tree is where the Guardian Spirit, Re-Awakens...


after years of slumber when the forest is threatened.

  • Is located outside of the Village that has been overtaken by enemies, thus giving us designers flexible distance to teach the player the Mechanics before they get there.
  • Overlooks the games End Goal and the path the player has to take to get there.





The Vista

The goal of the cinematic was to first give a soft introduction to the World and ...


its Setting, then introduce our Main Character, and finally Hint at the players objective.

  • I try to achieve the intro to the World by having it fade in from a Starry Sky before it slowly moves down into the forest and settles on a shot of the Secluded Tree where our Main Character is.





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Introduction to Swing

The goal of the cinematic was to first give a soft introduction to the World and ...


its Setting, then introduce our Main Character, and finally Hint at the players objective.

  • I try to achieve the intro to the World by having it fade in from a Starry Sky before it slowly moves down into the forest and settles on a shot of the Secluded Tree where our Main Character is.





Introduction to Tethering

The Secluded Tree is where the Guardian Spirit, Re-Awakens...


after years of slumber when the forest is threatened.

  • Is located outside of the Village that has been overtaken by enemies, thus giving us designers flexible distance to teach the player the Mechanics before they get there.
  • Overlooks the games End Goal and the path the player has to take to get there.





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Introduction to Slow-Motion

The final part of the Tutorial has the player Hooking and Tethering a ...


Swing-able Log, then utilizing it to Swing Across.

  • The player have to again re-iterate on the core mechanics that are used throughout the game but this time in combination with each other.
  • Makes use of lanterns and branches to guide the players point of view, and pop-lights behind the branches to make them more visible to the players point of view.





Ends with the Culmination of All Mechanics

The final part of the Tutorial has the player Hooking and Tethering a ...


Swing-able Log, then utilizing it to Swing Across.

  • The player have to again re-iterate on the core mechanics that are used throughout the game but this time in combination with each other.
  • Makes use of lanterns and branches to guide the players point of view, and pop-lights behind the branches to make them more visible to the players point of view.





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Cinematics

The Cinematics are made in Unreal Engine 4's Sequencer.

Opening Cinematic

The Intro to the World

The goal was to show that the Tree is poisoned and that the character heal it.


  • First the camera pan closer to Tree so that you can see that it is purple and poisoned, it pans upward so the player can take in its entire size.
  • In the next shot there is a close up of the character as she unleashes Healing energy that the travels toward the tree.
  • I use the effect to cover the camera naturally with a white fade out, when the camera fades back in the tree is green to hint that it has been restored.





The Intro to the Character

In the final shot she walks out of the Tree while the camera ...


pans around her and centers on the End Goal and then Pans toward the path that leads to it.

  • Keeps the Character within the frame to enforce that this is what this character sees and wants to go.





The Intro to the Main Goal

In the final shot she walks out of the Tree while the camera ...


pans around her and centers on the End Goal and then Pans toward the path that leads to it.

  • Keeps the Character within the frame to enforce that this is what this character sees and wants to go.





End Cinematic

(The End Cinematic doesn't have SFX or Music yet)
Utilizing the Healing Effect to transition from Sick to Healed Tree

The Goal of the Cut Scene

The goal was to show that the Tree is poisoned and that the character heal it.


  • First the camera pan closer to Tree so that you can see that it is purple and poisoned, it pans upward so the player can take in its entire size.
  • In the next shot there is a close up of the character as she unleashes Healing energy that the travels toward the tree.
  • I use the effect to cover the camera naturally with a white fade out, when the camera fades back in the tree is green to hint that it has been restored.





 

The Prototype

  • The player can Hook and Tether puzzle components and NPCs together for a lot of potential Emergent Gameplay solutions to puzzles. 
     

  • The Cable itself can be interacted with to knock over Enemies or bounce on.
     

  • Served as the foundation for the project. 
    Unfortunately it turned out to be too difficult to make the puzzle components fit and work art-wise so almost everything had to be cut.

Mechanics & Puzzle Components
Nim - Character Close Up