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  • The Delicate Art of Designing Platformers

    By Chris Zukowski

    (or how to make Super Mario levels that dont suck)

  • Wizard Golf RPG (iOS)

  • Dead King (In Development)

  • 1980 - Chris Zukowski Born (US) 1985 - Super Mario Bros. 1 Released (US) 2015 - Super Mario Maker Released (US)

  • Sketchbook c1988

  • YOUR MARIO LEVEL HAS NO CHILL

  • + = Platform Design Metatiles +

  • Super Mario Bros. (NES)

    Metatiles

  • Super Mario Bros. (NROM) US Super Mario Bros. 2 (TSROM)

  • World 1-3

    World 2-3

    World 3-3

  • Metatile list

    00 - Blank

    01 - Black Metatile

    02 - Bush Left

    03 - Bush Middle

    04 - Bush Right

    05 - Mountain Left

    06 - Mountain Left Bottom/Middle Center

    07 - Mountain Middle Top

    08 - Mountain Right

    09 - Mountain Right Bottom

    0A - Mountain Middle Bottom

    0B - Bridge Guardrail

    0C - Chain

    0D - Tall Tree Top, Top Half

    0E - Short Tree Top

    0F - Tall Tree Top, Bottom Half

    10 - Warp Pipe End Left, Points Up

    11 - Warp Pipe End Right, Points Up

    12 - Decoration Pipe End Left, Points Up

    13 - Decoration Pipe End Right, Points Up

    14 - Pipe Shaft Left

    15 - Pipe Shaft Right

    16 - Tree Ledge Left Edge

    17 - Tree Ledge Middle

    18 - Tree Ledge Right Edge

    19 - Mushroom Left Edge

    1A - Mushroom Middle

    1B - Mushroom Right Edge

    1C - Sideways Pipe End Top

    1D - Sideways Pipe Shaft Top

    1E - Sideways Pipe Joint Top

    1F - Sideways Pipe End Bottom

    20 - Sideways Pipe Shaft Bottom

    21 - Sideways Pipe Joint Bottom

    22 - Seaplant

    5E - Brick (1-Up)

    5F - Hidden Block (1 Coin)

    60 - Hidden Block (1-Up)

    61 - Solid Block (3-D Block)

    62 - Solid Block (White Wall)

    63 - Bridge

    64 - Bullet Bill Cannon Barrel

    65 - Bullet Bill Cannon Top

    66 - Bullet Bill Cannon Bottom

    67 - Blank Used For Jumpspring

    68 - Half Brick Used For Jumpspring

    69 - Solid Block (Water Level, Green Rock)

    6A - Half Brick (???)

    6B - Water Pipe Top

    6C - Water Pipe Bottom

    6D - Flag Ball (Residual Object)

    80 - Cloud Left

    81 - Cloud Middle

    82 - Cloud Right

    83 - Cloud Bottom Left

    84 - Cloud Bottom Middle

    85 - Cloud Bottom Right

    86 - Water/Lava Top

    87 - Water/Lava

    88 - Cloud Level Terrain

    89 - Bowser's Bridge

    C0 - Question Block (Coin)

    C1 - Question Block (Power-Up)

    C2 - Coin

    C3 - Underwater Coin

    C4 - Empty Block

    C5 - Axe

    23 - Blank, Used On Bricks Or Blocks That Are Hit

    24 - Flagpole Ball

    25 - Flagpole Shaft

    26 - Blank, Used In Conjunction With Vines

    00 - Vertical Rope

    41 - Horizontal Rope

    42 - Left Pulley

    43 - Right Pulley

    44 - Blank Used For Balance Rope

    45 - Castle Top

    46 - Castle Window Left

    47 - Castle Brick Wall

    48 - Castle Window Right

    49 - Castle Top W/ Brick

    4A - Entrance Top

    4B - Entrance Bottom

    4C - Green Ledge Stump

    4D - Fence

    4E - Tree Trunk

    4F - Mushroom Stump Top

    50 - Mushroom Stump Bottom

    51 - Breakable Brick W/ Line

    52 - Breakable Brick

    53 - Breakable Brick (Not Used)

    54 - Cracked Rock Terrain

    55 - Brick With Line (Power-Up)

    56 - Brick With Line (Vine)

    57 - Brick With Line (Star)

    58 - Brick With Line (Coins)

    59 - Brick With Line (1-Up)

    5A - Brick (Power-Up)

    5B - Brick (Vine)

    5C - Brick (Star)

    5D - Brick (Coins)

  • Think of Design in terms of Metatiles

  • 2-3 2-4 2 3

    Lateral Vertical

    Mario Golden Ratio [Demo]

  • + = Platform Design Metatiles + Formal Design

    Elements

  • Formal Elements of Platformer Design

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space R m h t y h Rhythm

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space R m h t y h Rhythm

    4-4 2-1

    2-3

    5

    3

    3

    2

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • With platform games, only playing the difficult parts

    can really take it out of you. It feels good to play parts

    that you can breeze through as well.

    [Prevents] that feeling that: "I'm still useless at this!"

    -Miyamoto

    Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

    0 10

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

    0 10

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

    0 10

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

    0 10

  • Vision Rhythm Time Surprise Resources Elevation Hazards Space

    0 10

  • = Platform Design Metatiles + Formal Design

    Elements Organization +

  • Organization

  • Five Paragraph Essay Three Act Structure Setup & Punchline

  • Kishtenketsu

    http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/168460/the_structure_of_fun_learning_.php?page=4

  • Introduction (ki)

    Development (sh)

    Twist (ten)

    Conclusion (ketsu)

  • Super Mario World (SNES)

    Forest of Illusion 1

  • ki

  • sh

  • ten

  • ketsu

  • = Platform Design Metatiles + Formal Design

    Elements Organization +

  • Lets Build

  • TIPS

  • Hunter S Thompson while at Time Magazine typed the entirety of the Great Gatsby

  • http://www.mariouniverse.com/maps

  • Bibliography

  • Design Theory

    Your Super Mario Maker level has no chill - http://boingboing.net/2015/09/14/super-mario-maker-levels.html I am ERROR : The Nintendo Family Computer / Entertainment System Platform Reverse Design: Super Mario World - http://store.payloadz.com/details/2006117-ebooks-games-reverse-design-super-mario-world.html# Super Mario Maker dos and donts - http://www.avclub.com/article/readers-lay-down-their-super-mario-maker-dos-and-d-225548 Antiepixelante - Level design lesson: to the right, hold on tight - http://auntiepixelante.com/?p=465 Antiepixelante - http://auntiepixelante.com/?p=459 Breaking the Law of Miyamoto http://gamersquarter.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=1244&sid=51655ca7914bd7ba2430d25dbff1fa72 The Structure of Fun: Learning from Super Mario 3D Land's Director (kishotenketsu) http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/168460/the_structure_of_fun_learning_.php?page=4 How to make great levels in Nintendos Mario Maker (Erin Robinson Swink Quote) http://boingboing.net/2015/09/11/want-to-create-mario-maker-lev.html

  • Interviews

    Iwata Asks - http://iwataasks.nintendo.com/interviews/#/wii/nsmb/0/3 Iwata Asks - http://iwataasks.nintendo.com/interviews/#/wii/mario25th/4/0 Time Magazine Miyamoto QA: http://techland.time.com/2010/11/08/shigeru-miyamoto-legendary-nintendo-designer-speaks-on-the-mythology-of-mario/

  • Talks and Podcasts

    Scroll Back (GDC 2015) - http://www.gdcvault.com/play/1022243/Scroll-Back-The-Theory-and Puzzle Design - Braid, LimboNot part of Mario except ghost houses. But this is an interesting video about a puzzle level: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6IBwvvNJ-mE&feature=youtu.be&t=2s

  • Cool Levels / Cool Designers

    Tom Hall Designer from Doom and commander keen: 68B9-000-0036-A704 Chris Kohler:D05A-0000-0077-8974 Jeremy Parish: EDD0-0000-0024-CA8E Dereck Yu (Spelunky): BD99-0000-0062-6FC7 David Hellman (Braid Artist): B3CB-0000-0033-507C James Kochalka: 287C-0000-007A-E3E3

  • Made Here in Phoenix

    14C5-0000-0034-E90B Tim Winsky B671-0000-007B-C8B3 Justin Walsh 9966-0000-0041-C582 Chris Zukowski

  • Chris Zukowski @adventureMtn www.returntoadventuremountain.com Mailing List

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