This section is the location of the flute civilisation, We based this off the flute attributes similarly to some of the others, in this case, the flute has several major elements that will influence the design of the environment. The people are naturally shy and I want the environment to reflect this, having areas that are hard to reach and possibly places the player cannot get to, places that allow them to escape with ease as if catered to their innate shyness. This coupled with things we associate with the flute, such as being childish, simple, rickety and poorly constructed. These kind of words generated some instant ideas that lead us toward almost childlike structures, I believe a treehouse layout would be the best way of conveying this, in the narrative we worked on the idea that before the game, the large triangle man caused the destruction of their previous settlement that was land based thus another reason for an elevated layout. This also works well with a shyness element, having bridges and houses out of the players reach that the people scurry to works well to build up the feeling we’re trying to bring.
This environment style gives us a good level of control over vertical space as well, while others focus more on X and Z space this environment could afford some interesting dynamics that make use of the camera moving up and down.
Unlike the last chapter, this one is not based on an actual location but rather an idea of child-like treehouses, no actual civilisation other than some small tribes of New Guinea utilise treehouses as a structure, and so this creation tends to lead more towards a fantasy element or a childish interpretation thus the theme. Treehouses are largely impractical however, this suites the flute civilisation quite well as the subtle elements of their back story and character point towards impracticality and poor decisions, perhaps reflected in their building style as a nuance, crude and inefficient buildings made from wood and rope.
As this area is based within treehouses, the primary and most obvious visual element of the surroundings are very large trees, these trees are far wider that player characters and extend from the ground that the player either cannot directly see or is simply unimportant. Occasional foliage is visible on the trees and growing on the treehouses, ivy, mediterranean style shrubbery.
Bridges could become an issue if not thought about, as movement is quite fast and flowing the bridges have to be wide enough that players don’t keep crashing into the sides or falling off if that’s a possibility. A possible way to handle this is have nets underneath the bridges that players can fall in and then get out of however this could break the flow of the game, an easier and more effective way to handle this is to keep players on the bridges.
The treehouses have to be significantly larger than initially thought due to the rope bridge issues we I don’t want players falling out of the treehouses and I don’t want players to be constantly crashing into the sides due to the speed of the movement system that Dean is working on at my request.
Moodboard Visual inspiration
Various mood boards of the visual inspiration for this area.
I own none of these images, they are being used for educational purposes
This area was fun but also a logistical headache, initially, the bridges were designed before the movement system and when speaking to Dean about the jumping and gliding I realised players would probably fall off the bridges, I considered nets underneath the level but opted with enlargening the bridges and treehouses substantially to make it easier to stay on