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University of Derby School of Computing & Mathematics

A Project completed as part of the requirements for the BA (Hons) Computer Games Modelling and Animation

Entitled

The Different Artistic Elements of Level Direction within Different Genres of First-Person-Shooter Games.

By Stevie Adams

in years 2012/13

stevieadams1605@Gmail.com

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Contents
Table of Figures .......................................................................................................................... 4 Abstract ....................................................................................................................................... 5 Introduction ................................................................................................................................ 7 Literature Review ....................................................................................................................... 9 Halo 3 Environment Presentation ........................................................................................... 9 GDC Level Design Notes ..................................................................................................... 10 Horror/Survival Level Design: ............................................................................................. 16 Hourences - The Hows and Whys of Level Design: ............................................................ 20 Summary............................................................................................................................... 23 Examples of currently released games using Level Direction Elements.................................. 24 Dishonoured ......................................................................................................................... 24 Mass Effect 3 ........................................................................................................................ 29 F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin .................................................................................................... 39 Methodology............................................................................................................................. 42 Project Goal .......................................................................................................................... 42 Level Planning/Design ......................................................................................................... 42 Results Collecting ................................................................................................................. 43 Final Results/Conclusion ...................................................................................................... 43 Instrument Development ...................................................................................................... 44 Results and Analysis ................................................................................................................. 46 Action Genre Results ............................................................................................................ 46 Horror Genre Results ............................................................................................................ 50 Others factors that could have Effected my Results ............................................................. 53 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................ 54 Bibliography ............................................................................................................................. 56 Appendix .................................................................................................................................. 57 1.A Participant Consent Forms ............................................................................................. 57 1.B Participant Testing Footage ........................................................................................... 58 1.C Action Genre Maps ........................................................................................................ 59

3 1.D Horror Genre Maps ........................................................................................................ 60

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Table of Figures
Figure 1: Candlestick Face ....................................................................................................... 15 Figure 2: Building Anticipation Graph ..................................................................................... 19 Figure 3: Bad Lighting example ............................................................................................... 21 Figure 4: Good Lighting example ............................................................................................ 21 Figure 5: Dishonored Lighting example 1 ................................................................................ 24 Figure 6: Dishonored, forcing the player turn avoid an area .................................................... 25 Figure 7: Dishonored, Making the desired path stand out ........................................................ 26 Figure 8: Dishonored, Eye catching area ................................................................................. 27 Figure 9: Dishonored, Enemy placement ................................................................................. 27 Figure 10: Mass Effect 3, Advertisement ................................................................................. 29 Figure 11: Mass Effect 3, Scrolling Advertisements ................................................................ 30 Figure 12: Mass Effect 3, Non Symmetrical Design ................................................................ 30 Figure 13: Mass Effect 3, Standout Objects ............................................................................. 31 Figure 14: Mass Effect 3, Eye catching paths ......................................................................... 32 Figure 15: Mass Effect 3, Vehicles point to the way out ......................................................... 33 Figure 16: Mass Effect 3, Interactable objects 1 ...................................................................... 34 Figure 17: Mass Effect 3, Using red to tell the player you can't access a location .................. 35 Figure 18: Mass Effect 3, Using green to let a player know this area can be accessed ........... 36 Figure 19: Using colours to show intractable objects .............................................................. 36 Figure 20: Mass Effect 3, Enemy placement ............................................................................ 37 Figure 21: Mass Effect 3, Using Lighting composition to draw a player down a path ........... 38 Figure 22: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Example of lighting in horror ..................................... 39 Figure 23: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Screen effect................................................................ 40 Figure 24: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Enemy Surprise ........................................................... 40 Figure 25: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Armoury ...................................................................... 41

Table 1: Action Genre Level Direction Elements results ......................................................... 46 Table 2: Action Genre Results Bar chart .................................................................................. 48 Table 3: Horror Genre Results Table ....................................................................................... 50 Table 4: Horror Genre Results Bar chart .................................................................................. 51

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Acknowledgements
I want to say thank you to my Lecturer Phil Morris for convincing me to turn this design project into a research paper, I would not have had anywhere near as much fun doing this project otherwise.

Most importantly I want to thank my mother for her amazing support whenever she saw me working on this, and for making sure it wasn't a grammatical failure at the end.

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Abstract
This project is based all around how to set a level up to guide a player around it successfully without them even realising it, during the level design process. During this project we will be looking at various different articles that cover what different elements there are and how they affect a player when they are used on them. This project will also be examining how to set up these design elements so that you do not do the opposite of what you are trying to do and cause a player to get lost and/or break immersion. Finally this project will look into which of these level direction elements are the more powerful and where others become better when they are coupled with others.

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Introduction
When it comes down to level design, there are a massive amount of different elements that need to be considered during the production process. These range from level layouts, to weapon placement, to AI difficulty or even level direction throughout the game.

This research project will be researching the different forms of artistic level direction in current gen games. This refers to the different forms of visual guidance the level designers use to lead the players through their levels and guide them towards game objectives. It can also be used to set the pace of the game as well. For example, you can use low light, and eerie messages to make a player traverse a level slowly by creating a sense of anxiousness and foreboding.

The research will use information from several publications that companies have released at different conferences like GDC (Game Developers Conference), and the many online articles and books that well known level designers, such as Sjoerd De Jong (known to the game design community as "Hourences") have created to aid other designers. After that this project will use all the information found from each of those articles and use it to go through several different recently released games and see how those developers have incorporated the different techniques into their games. This is to see how they vary over different genres and types of games. The project will also examine tweaks that have been made to these direction elements and also to see if they use a specific type of level direction to lead to a certain thing, like using a star to always signify a hidden door.

The information gathered will be used to design one level for a First Person shooter (FPS) action game. Then a level from an already released Horror FPS game called "F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin". Two genres have been chosen because they are the most common types of FPS and cover a good range of design elements. The Action level will be designed to be able to be completed in a variety of different ways because throughout it I will have a variety of what will be called level direction elements that will be researched. The horror level is more to see how these previously mentioned level direction elements (LDE's) have been adapted to suit the game to see how much it effects the ability to guide a player through the level.

8 After this a sample size of a minimum of twenty people will be asked to play the levels to see how effective each of the level direction elements are. After this the results will be recorded from the tests of each participant's play through that will be plotted and totalled up to see the level direction elements that drew them towards certain areas of the game.

These results will be analysed and compared with one another and then presented in the results analysis detailing which level design elements were the most influential between the genres. This will not only tell us which LDE's are the most useful and dominant in each genre but also which ones work best across both genres too. These results can then be used by other level designers to refer to when they design new levels for their game to make sure they know how to lure the player down the chosen route.

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Literature Review

Halo 3 Environment Presentation

This was a presentation that Bungie presented at GDC back in 2008, It talks about the many different things they had to consider when designing the levels for one of their best selling games "Halo 3". It has a few slides dedicated to guiding the player through the levels, which even though were techniques from 2008 are still very viable today.

About half way through the presentation there is a section that talks about avoiding the player getting lost. The quote is: “Force an Orientation - One-way Asymmetry Simple asymmetry to the terrain or structure can make a space both more interesting to fight in and it can prevent players from getting lost. It’s made even better when that asymmetry is formed from a prominent feature, such as a cliff, river, or giant window. This will allow players to reorient themselves after being turned around in the heat of combat.)" (Bungie, 2008)

What this is implying is to not make the levels look the same on both sides; to make everything look different and add “prominent features” commonly known as focal points, to let the player use as a form of map orientation and navigational aid. This will prevent the players from getting lost and will help to stop the level from looking too symmetrical. This is one of the most important things when it comes to level direction and design in all genres. The trade-off to doing this means that more work has to go into levels in order to achieve this effect and look to break away from looking the same for the sake of reusing the level kit, which is why a lot of beginner level designers don't make use of this key design aspect. In relation to the point of this project, the importance of this level design element is close to paramount because of the player needing to know at all times if they are going backwards or forwards through the level.

10 The presentation went on to say: “Suggest Specific Tactics or Gameplay Obvious strong position -these are spaces that lend themselves to assault and defense. A single stronghold with numerous avenues of attack.” (Bungie, 2008)

This explains how to use various different kinds of visual aesthetics and different amounts of cover in areas to suggest to the player which way to go within the level. If you combine this with what the previous quote was talking about it should clearly lay out a path for the player to hopefully easily follow and should prevent any map orientation confusion. This is aimed towards the action/sci-fi genre of First Person Shooter games, so it is not really relevant to the horror/survival genre due to a general lack of needing to take cover. You may need to hide in some horror games, but hiding from a monster is not the same as taking cover from bullet fire. For this reason when it comes to designing horror game levels you need to find a different source of powerful level direction (which will be explained further later on); you can't just throw in thirty places to hide in a room, as it would take away a massive form of realism and fear factor.

GDC Level Design Notes

This article was created from the notes and minutes of a developer talk at GDC 2010, where they had many industry head level designers explain the various aspects that go into making a level work and how to make level design for games work and stand out. There is a lot in this about level design which isn't overly relevant to this project, but there were a few areas that cover level direction as well. One of them is: “Ecology is item placement (health, powerups, weapon pickups, other collectibles...). Item placement must have a meaning (narrative justification for example) and reward player behaviour (exploration). A player should not be forced to grab all those pickups. Instead, he will generate himself the need for those items...this is where a level design is great.

In a nutshell: Item placement + connected game systems + level layout = gameplay. Through the visual is communicated the affordance. Taking examples from Bioshock we saw earlier, he points lots of visual cues or signs to help the player identify where are hidden the goods. For instance, some tickets lying on the floor is leading to a cash register containing money or an alcohol sign above a bar where drinkable items are located. Also,

11 player must be kept inside the simulation boundaries.” (Douce, 2010)

This talks about item placement around the levels to direct the player around the different areas and reach the objective or other mini objectives or hidden/secret things. An example could be the use of related items to point the player towards a goal in the level, for example if you make it so that you need to find something in a computer room, having computers on the floor near the room will suggest to the player to follow that direction. This can also be used when you make a resource a necessity, like if you made the player regenerate health if they were in water and having water on the floor would make the player naturally head towards the source, you help the player to generate the need for it like the quote said. The flaws with this however are that you need to either make the objects different to any others you might have in order not to create confusion for the players, which requires more development time and more items to load in game, or in the resource case you need to make sure that the resource is constantly needed. Using the previous water as a health source example again, if the plan is to use water or fountains as a level direction element, you need to make sure that there is a constant need for more health, so careful thought needs to go into the core game design and enemy placement needs to be very well considered for this to work. As a form of artistic level design, this is a very dangerous one to use but can be very powerful if used correctly. If you don't generate enough need then it won't work in luring the player around the level.

Further on in the article there is a section that talks about how objects and object placement are an integral part of level design:

" There are three kind of objects:   

Dynamic physics Destructible Damage-inflicting objects"

"Physics are close to reality, so it's easy for a human to apprehend the results. Damage inflicting objects are the cheapest way to get response from the environment." (Douce, GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 4, 2010)

12 This is also applies very heavily to having a clear cut level direction. You can use a mixture of obvious signs to stop a player going into an area or lead them towards it e.g. using a giant no entry sign on the wall next to a doorway to try and stop the player going down it, or subtle objects/object movement, like a window smashing across the room to catch the players eye and lure them over to investigate. This can also be achieved using the "damage-inflicting" objects, like a room full of fire, because they can provide a clear "do not go this way" message to the player. Doing it like this does it in a much more artistic way than just having a locked door or a corridor leading to nowhere. This makes the player feel more involved and immersed with the overall game, becoming more a case of "I don't want to go that way because I don't want to kill myself" instead of "I can't go that way because the game won't let me". The first shows player attachment to character, where as the second shows a breaking of immersion. You can't however just fill rooms with fire or have every window in the game smash whenever you want to direct the player, so it's up to the level designers to find different ways of doing each of these things. Though at the same time they can't go around making really obvious suggestions, like the giant no entry sign, to players because then it becomes a case of hand holding the players through the levels and destroys any form of fun or exploration. So you can only really use obvious signs in situation where the player only has a split second to make a choice where to go, if they were being chased for example.

The usage of signs as an artistic level direction has become a lot more common in games in recent years because of games like "Left 4 Dead" utilising it. The issue most companies fall into is that they leave these long messages in places player don't generally stand to read them in and it fails as a level design element then.

The final page of this article talks about story telling through levels and environments, and how powerful it can be, or how quickly it can fail. In the article, Joel Burgess says "The Level Designer has a very special relationship with the player: he's kind of driving the coach where the player is seated during the game journey. So we definitely can let the player enjoy some sightseeing as we drive (Douce, GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 5, 2010)

This is an integral part of level direction, especially when it comes to horror/survival games. A good story will make the player very immersed within the atmosphere of the game which is very important to a horror game, if you can't trap them inside the games feeling/mood it will not be scary to them which is something all level designers need to keep in mind. There are

13 many ways to tell a story through the environment, the article lists the most powerful two: " There are two kinds of tools we can use:   Language (speech, text, spraypaint, ...) Visuals (layout, FX, clutter, ...)." (Douce, GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 5, 2010)

Both of these are very powerful when it comes to level direction, the language section is key to accomplishing the story immersion and we can use this to lead the player through the levels out of curiosity and interest. We can use messages on the walls to direct players to rooms, or scribble warnings to look out for, which will make the player wary. As mentioned earlier, these can heavily influence the pace of the game. Bloody messages may be very cliché, but that means that they work which is why we see them in every horror game.

However level designers need to be very careful when using text, as Joel later went on to say in his presentation: "Why language? Because it's familiar, direct and clear. But there are traps, like tired techniques (i.e. unskippable lenghty paragraphs of scrolling star wars text :) or localization concerns (slang translation is VERY hazardous)" (Douce, GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 5, 2010)

This is a trap a lot of games fall into, there have been so many occasions where players have gone "I don't know where to go!" and someone as replied "did you listen to what the guy was saying, he tells you" and the first said "no because there was too much writing and I couldn't be bothered to read it!". This must be avoided for successful story driven level direction, this is where level designers can use small notes on the wall mentioning the place to go in forms of warnings, or, like in "Left4Dead", discussion on the place and how to get there. There will however always be the players who skip all forms of dialogue and don't care about the story at all, and level designers use the other previously mentioned forms of level direction for those occasions, but this is a player choice and not down to lack of direction being put in by the designer, they can't guide someone through speech and text who doesn't want to listen or read. When it comes to action games in this respect, there isn't always a lot of time to allow for this level of story driven direction because of the fast paced nature of action games, there are however other means of doing thing, like having the name of a place as a objective for the player to constantly refer to, and using things like advertisements for the place they need to get to or street signs pointing in the direction the player needs to go. This is a very low form

14 of language based story level direction but it still very effective. Bringing this back to the point of being a level direction element, this is useful to players who bother to read it, so it cannot be used on its own to guide a player around because if the player doesn't read it then they wont follow it. This worked well when it is combined with level direction elements that are subliminal messages.

When it comes down to visuals for games, there are so many that can effect whether a player decides to go down a path or not that you need to be careful what you decide to use. In the article Joel listed a few of the most influential visual effects used in level design and how our brain processes them:

"We have a huge array of visual tools at our disposal:       

Level Layout Lighting AI behaviour Small clutter Particle FXs State changes Post Process

To make the best use of those tools, we must understand a bit how the human brain works. That's what Gestalt is about. To bastardize the concept, Gestalt is about the human cognition and especially its ability to do pattern recognition. Joel showed us a famous picture of a glass forged from 2 human faces.

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Figure 1: Candlestick Face (Douce, GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 5, 2010)

Whether we first saw the faces or the glass doesn't matter. What mattered was the fact our brain did compute the image to extract a meaning. Our brain is hard wired to draw conclusions: we crave order in what we see! Familiar shapes are the most recognizable. Nowadays, there are a lot of gamer demographics, and it's still growing! We can easily be lost, but since we're all humans, we can use gestalt. " (Douce, GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 5, 2010)

This information on how our brain works are pivotal in using these tools to make the player want to traverse your levels. You can use these tools to build up emotions within the player just by seeing the smallest of things because their brain wants to understand why these things are happening, or wants to understand what these things are doing and for what purpose. When you combine that need from the brain with things such as flickering lights in a very dark corridor in a horror game, it instantly builds fear and caution in the player, but also gives them an unbelievably strong amount of curiosity to see what's down there. This all happens without them realising that their brain is being played like an instrument and if used correctly can be reused a number of times and the brain will get drawn in every time. There are so many things you can do with lighting in a level to decide where a player goes that entire books have been written regarding it. This project will also delve deeper into lighting later on. For now, it can be used to draw a player to a path using not only brightness, but colour,

16 whether it flashes, how far away it is, it is quite possibly the most powerful tool when it comes to level direction.

The other main effect that can control level direction is post processing. There are so many ways a level designer can use post processing to guide a player it's surprising. You could create a whole screen effect to signify when a player is heading in a direction they shouldn't be, or you could create a form of edge detection to go along the path you are meant to be following for a clear "follow this way" message. Post processing has a large amount of powerful features which you can use for direct, in the players face, messages and guidance. This can be very useful for action games as you can pass messages to the player very quickly using post processing to signify if they are doing something wrong or something right, which helps a lot with the previously mentioned fast paced nature of a lot of action first person shooter games. The one thing you need to be careful of with both lighting and post processing is to not have too much going on in the game space at once to cause confusion for the player. In some games you want to create a form of being lost where the player needs to find their own way, but during that time they are still immersed in the game and they are still playing and having fun. If you confuse the player because too much is happening at once and then they die or can't do something because of it, that doesn't just break immersion, it causes anger and will probably lead to them not wanting to play anymore. It's not always down to having to many gameplay mechanics that cause confusion but just too much going on within the screen at one time. A recently release game called "Planetside 2" suffered from this, there are so many things going on at once in relation to game mechanics and things on your screen, that for new players it is overwhelming and takes a lot of perseverance to try and understand what is happening. So much so that around six or seven 10 minute videos had to be made to act as tutorials to help new players understand what is happening. This is bad game design and bad game level direction if you need to use over an hour worth of tutorials so that players can understand how to play your game.

Horror/Survival Level Design:

When it comes to horror games, the entire experience is about jumps and frights as well as mind games and playing with a users fear and emotions. There are a number of ways to do this, and they all make a massive amount of curiosity for the player, which level designers can

17 use to guide the player around the level. This article found on "World of Level design" covers the many things that need to be considered when you make a horror level, and covers a lot of detail about guding the player around those levels.

One of the ways to improve level direction is through the use of clichés, as mentioned within the article: "Clichés do work.

Even when we know what is going to happen, there are certain psychological triggers that make us react. That is why they are clichés, because they have been proven to work.

The goal is to recognize the clichés and then take it a step further.

Knowing how clichés work and what they are. You would then be able to anticipate the player's reaction. Having that knowledge of player's expectation and their possible next step you are able to put a new spin on them. Use clichés as a base for your level designs and game designs." (World of Level Design, 2009)

So what this means is that even though clichés work in guiding the player around the level, the player already knows what's going to happen and this isn't exciting, you don't want to ruin gameplay and level guidance by doing that. If you constantly have someone appearing at the window then the player will avoid windows because they are bored of what happens next which makes that level guidance element stop working. So the designers need to make them do new and exciting things at the climax of cliché. This keeps the gameplay fresh and exciting and would keep the players interest throughout the game. This is means that you build new curiosity and can lure the player along the desired path you want. Examples of ways you can do this are through use of sound effects from down corridors to catch the players attention and try to lure them down a path, or you make it seem like something is chasing them and make them think they are running away down a path but are actually running the way you want them to go. A very good way to use clichés as level design elements is in the monsters you use in the horror games, the best example are the FEAR games, they use the cliché image of an evil little girl as the main antagonist which was made famous by the "Ring" films. By using something like this as a main antagonist the player is able to instantly realise that that person/monster poses a serious threat and should be avoided.

18 The article also goes onto explain about the use of anticipation and pacing within the levels to build up the scare factor and control how the level is explored. As previously mentioned, it's all about setting the speed at which the player goes through your level. Pacing also refers to how often something happens within the level, and how often you scare the player. The article goes on to say:

"Pacing should be built slowly and meticulously. Thinking through every event as each step on a staircase. One step at at time until you reach the top. You never want to go from step one to step ten without hitting every step along the way."(World of Level Design, 2009)

This just re-illiterates not to have your major frights happen in the beginning because you want to give time for anticipation to build. You can however fall into a big trap with pacing, if you take too long to present your dangers your game becomes boring and loses immersion. The previously mentioned anticipation is the backbone of horror games because it's what the entire level of curiosity the player has is built up from. It is through this feeling on anticipation that we can use sounds, screams, flickering lights or any form of level direction to pull the player towards an objective, it causes the "I know something is going to happen over there" feeling and the entire time they move towards it because of curiosity.

The article also further explains anticipation with "Think of a roller coaster. As you wait in line, you hear the sound of the roller coaster go up and down. You hear others screaming and yelling. You feel the ground shake. As you slowly make your way you see others in front get in and they are gone. As you get closer and closer you feel your heart pumping faster and faster. So once you are inside the cart, there is no point of going back. You have been strapped in and ready to go. Now you are going up slowly waiting for your decent, and then all that waiting and build up is justified by the roller coaster being released as you plummet on the first dive." (World of Level Design, 2009)

There is however a big downside to anticipation and that is that the climax of it all must be really eventful and exciting to the player, as the article goes on to describe "If all that waiting around comes to a disappointing release then the intended effect is lost. Nothing would make up for it. Your experience would be ruined. At the same time if you didn't have the build up, and all of a sudden you get on and whoosh, its over. It would be a disappointing ride.". (World of Level Design, 2009)

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This is an issue that a lot of level designers have. They usually spend a lot of time building up anticipation for meaningless things or small encounters and by the time the big monster rolls around, they have spent their bag of tricks on everything prior to this and nothing is surprising or scary to the player anymore, "FEAR 3" suffered horribly for this, it tried to be scary all in the beginning and by the second level nothing was new or scary at all and the game turned out rubbish. This article gives us a great diagram on how to do this right.

Figure 2: Building Anticipation Graph (World of Level Design, 2009)

The last part of this article talks about making moral choices within the levels. Whereas the majority of moral choices are related to a games overall story progression, or are related to gameplay features, it does cover how moral choices can be used to guide a player around the level. The article reads "So how do you begin to have your player have more of a connection with your game and your level?  

Begin by introducing decisions into your game, into your level design it will stand out as a unique and very rare map. Introduce a choice in player's path."

(World of Level Design, 2009)

The main thing to take away from that for level direction is to offer choices to the player. Not only does this engage them more within the game and make your map stand out, it covers up the reality that they are being subliminally hand held throughout the map. If you make

20 everything linear the players know about it; there have been many games ha have been described as being "too linear in level design". When this is said it shows bad level direction or lazy design which makes the game less fun to the player. When it comes to doing this in horror games you could present a choice where the player can hear a woman screaming from a room down the corridor, the player can either choose to go into the room and investigate, or they can choose to avoid it completely, both would have been paths to the end of a level, but one gives off the image of posing a massive threat to the player whilst they could save someone and the other doesn't pose a threat at all, this is a moral choice in level direction. In order for this to work however, careful level layout planning needs to be done and tested in order to make sure that everything still works and the level can be completed successfully both ways, this takes up more design time which is why some games miss out on doing things like this or don't have the time left and choose not as well done game design. So coming back to the point in this project, you need to make your level direction elements build up anticipation and make it seem like the player is guiding themselves throughout the level instead of being hand held by the level design and level direction elements.

Hourences - The Hows and Whys of Level Design:

Sjoerd De Jong, or more commonly known as Hourences, is one of the games industry best known level designers when it comes to the Unreal Development Kit (UDK) and has created some of the best tutorials there are for level design in UDK. He has also released two books which are regarded by many as fundamentals for all level designers. One of these books "The Hows and Why of Level Design" has a number of topics that, even though are aimed for level design as a whole, are very relevant when it comes to level direction. One of his chapters is based solely on lighting and how to make it look good and realistic throughout the level. It was previously mentioned how powerful lighting is for guiding the player through the level, but in order to keep a good look of realism and accuracy within the game the lighting still needs to look correct. If this is not done everything else falls apart; incorrect lighting can be one of the worst things to happen to a game so to make sure that this doesn't happen! This book covers all aspects of setting up lighting correctly within UDK and general things you should consider for all level building.

21 " The most basic rule of lighting is that it always needs a light source. It is impossible to have lighting in an area with no source" (De Jong, 2007)

Figure 3: Bad Lighting example (De Jong, 2007)

This pictures shown a scene incorrectly lit. As like the quote was saying all lights need a source in order to look correct, otherwise the whole scene just doesn't make any form of visual sense. If the scene wasn't a corridor but say a room with multiple doors you wouldn't be able to guide a player using the lights because the whole thing is one block light. This is how the scene looks with correct light sources.

Figure 4: Good Lighting example (De Jong, 2007)

As you can see the lights which are now being shown as coming from the lights in the roof, look a lot more correct and the lighting composition makes the darker areas between each light's radius look a lot more interesting. Light sources and light composition both contribute to level guiding because a player will always travel into the lighter areas. A designer also need

22 to make sure all of the lights look correct from each source, as the book says "Another lighting aspect to avoid is lighting that is out of balance with the size of the source. An example could be a small light source that somehow manages to illuminate an entire room or corridor " (De Jong, 2007)

This is one of the biggest mistake level designers that are not very experienced make on a regular basis, even some professionals still do it in some games because they are too lazy and think that no one will notice. Seeing this makes the room/level look off and unfinished so it ruins the feeling of the game. Bright lights will always lead a player down that path, but if you do not make the lighting fit the environment then everything else looks out of place and the game looks tacky.

Another aspect of level direction that this book goes into is item placement. It only talks about item placement in multiplayer games but multiplayer and single player games share a lot of similarities when it comes to level direction in First Person Shooter games. The main difference between single player and multiplayer level direction is that in single player you are trying to get from start to finish, where as in multiplayer player you are setting up a series of looping paths that all inter-link in order for players to always be on the path to something, and for each of these players to cross paths and fight.

"One very important aspect of multiplayer games is item and weapon placement. The pickups will determine where the player will travel through the level and the subsequent routes they choose. Pickups create goals and destinations and thus ambushes as well. Pickups can help the player by providing them with health, ammunition, and extra tools, but can also work against them by giving away their location and therefore endanger them" (De Jong, 2007)

This follows on from the players making their own need for items, as previously mentioned in the GDC article, but this one mentioned endangering the player, which in single player games, depending on what you are setting up, you may or may not want to do. What this means is to place items that will be essential to players smartly, (you don't put health packs in room where the player will take a lot of damage), but you can use items to lure a player into little traps you may set up to mix up the gameplay, the idea is to not have the player run in and die over a 20hp med kit.

23

Summary

The information gathered throughout the literature review explains the areas a level designer needs to consider and make sure they get right when directing a player throughout the level. It covered information from non symmetrical level design to messages on the walls to building anticipation. It even covered how to correctly set up lighting in a scene regarding composition. This was covered because of how powerful lighting as a level direction element but if it isn't set up correctly then it doesn't work.

The information here covers enough so that level designers can use something for either an Action or a Horror game and place in enough level design elements to allow for successful navigation for players. It also covers the placement and amount of level design elements to place so that it covers all bases. The information from here will also be used in the next section to show how current released games adapt these level direction elements to fit within their environments to give examples of how they can be used.

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Examples of currently released games using Level Direction Elements
Here I will showcase a few currently released games that use powerful Level Direction elements and how they have adapted some of them to fit the needs of the game.

Dishonoured

Dishonoured is a FPS Action/stealth game developed by Arkane Studios and released by Bethesda Softworks on the 9th October 2012.

Figure 5: Dishonored Lighting example 1 (Arkane Studios, 2012)

Here Arkane have set up this spotlight to act as a giant arrow of sorts for the player. It is a very powerful form of level direction because even without the player realising they will follow the giant beam of light.

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Figure 6: Dishonored, forcing the player turn avoid an area (Arkane Studios, 2012)

In this picture there are rats on the floor. This game has rats set up to be a major threat to the player when there is not another source of food for them. Therefore when the player see's a giant group of rats on their own, it will cause the player to turn around and go the opposite way due to the rats threat to them. This is used to prevent the player from reaching undesired areas.

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Figure 7: Dishonored, Making the desired path stand out (Arkane Studios, 2012)

At this section of the game the player is sent to kill a high ranking government official. The building in the picture has been decorated differently than normal with the giant red flag, symbolising the target is within this building. This is a great use of prop placement to guide the player.

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Figure 8: Dishonored, Eye catching area (Arkane Studios, 2012)

This room is a completely different colour compared to the other rooms in the building. This catches the players eye and draws them in. This is a good trick for drawing people into secret places or drawing them towards key points in the level.

Figure 9: Dishonored, Enemy placement (Arkane Studios, 2012)

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Because of the stealth nature of this game, having groups of enemies together will cause the player to find a different route around an area. As you can see in this example, the player is now scaling across rooftops. This is a good way of drawing players along an intended path.

29 Mass Effect 3

This game is a third person Sci-fi Action/Role playing game developed by Bioware and published by Electronic Arts, released on March 6th 2012. Even though this game isn't an FPS game, it still uses a lot of FSP style LDE's because of it being a shooter style game.

Figure 10: Mass Effect 3, Advertisement (Bioware, 2012)

The advertisement in this room looks so drastically different to the rest of the room it appeals to the players curiosity instantly drawing them towards it. As they get there the door next to it opens up revealing a weapon for the player to obtain outside of level goals. Another thing to note in this picture is how this method of player attraction has been adapted to still fit in the game world.

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Figure 11: Mass Effect 3, Scrolling Advertisements (Bioware, 2012)

The advertisements in this section of the game scroll in the direction that the player is meant to be going. This causes the player to subconsciously follow the intended path. Once again this LDE has been adapted to follow the games style.

Figure 12: Mass Effect 3, Non Symmetrical Design (Bioware, 2012)

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This screenshot is a clear example of non symmetrical levels. This allows the player to instantly know which direction they are facing and prevents them from getting lost.

Figure 13: Mass Effect 3, Standout Objects (Bioware, 2012)

The light coming from the VIP sign is completely different to the overall blue colour of this level. This change of light will draw the player straight to it.

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Figure 14: Mass Effect 3, Eye catching paths (Bioware, 2012)

This staircase does a similar thing as the previous image, using the glowing lights on the sides of the stairs to draw the player up them. Both of these images are very clear examples of how the development team set up the lighting to guide the player.

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Figure 15: Mass Effect 3, Vehicles point to the way out (Bioware, 2012)

In this docking area, the window has cars and ships flying in from the right and exiting on the left. This causes a similar thing to happen with the scrolling advertisements. In this case they are pointing towards the area exit.

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Figure 16: Mass Effect 3, Interactable objects 1 (Bioware, 2012)

This is an example of how intractable objects in the fighting areas of shooting games are giant magnets when in combat. Whether it's a form of explosive to use against the enemy, or a ladder to get to higher ground, the player will head towards it.

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Figure 17: Mass Effect 3, Using red to tell the player you can't access a location (Bioware, 2012)

This shows how use of the colour red on doors can be an instant message to the player that the area that way is locked and that they need to find another way. Instant messages are needed when in combat because the player has enough to deal with already.

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Figure 18: Mass Effect 3, Using green to let a player know this area can be accessed (Bioware, 2012)

Whereas the use of green on doors allows for an instant message of "this door is unlocked" so the player knows that they can go this way.

Figure 19: Using colours to show intractable objects (Bioware, 2012)

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Greens can also be used to signify objects that can be activated while in a combat area instantly.

Figure 20: Mass Effect 3, Enemy placement (Bioware, 2012)

This room has a special form of enemy placement in it. Because the room is dark it allows the player to set up his AI companions for an ambush. Because of where the developers have set up available cover for both you and the AI, it causes you to place them exactly where the developers want you to be for you to do exactly what they intend you to do, while making you feel cool for setting up a successful ambush. This is a great way of giving something back to the player while placing them exactly where you want them to be by using cover placement.

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Figure 21: Mass Effect 3, Using Lighting composition to draw a player down a path (Bioware, 2012)

This is a good example of a light in a corner drawing a player off the intended path towards something secret. In this case, a weapon upgrade.

39 F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin

Figure 22: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Example of lighting in horror (Monolith Productions, 2009)

Here is an example of the lighting in horror games. Notice the high contrast and intense lighting composition. This is done to draw the player around the level while still keeping the atmosphere scary. These lights can be flickering as well to build up a lot of anticipation.

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Figure 23: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Screen effect (Monolith Productions, 2009)

This is an example of a screen effect that occurs when your near Alma, this prompts the player to escape and run away. This can be used to make a player run down a corridor and make it seem like they are just running away from the enemy.

Figure 24: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Enemy Surprise (Monolith Productions, 2009)

41 The enemy here appears when a switch is pressed to cause a shock horror. This not only builds anticipation and will control the pacing around the next area but it conveys that the enemy is a threat and will cause the player to avoid them if they come into contact with it again.

Figure 25: F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, Armoury (Monolith Productions, 2009)

This image shows a room off the main path that contains a huge amount of weaponry. This is an example of how light and atmospheric change can drag someone off the main path to find something hidden. This concept can be used for collectibles and hidden secondary objectives.

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Methodology

Project Goal

In order to find out which level direction elements are the more powerful ones and find the best places to have some of them in the horror/survival and action/sci-fi FPS games an action genre level will be made using the "Unreal Development Kit" (UDK) and a level from a previously released game, "FEAR 2: Project Origin) will be used to cover the horror genre. These will be aimed to take around ten - twenty minutes completion time which will have a minimum of twenty participants. From here a checklist of all of the level design elements that are in both levels will be made and the participants will be observed with; if a level design element influences a player then it will be marked down as used. From here I will take all of the results I have and place them into tables using Excel to instantly calculate percentages and make tables from the data. In order to make sure no data is missed I will be using the screen capture software "Fraps" to record each participant's game so that it can also be referred back to later on and see exactly how effective each level direction element was.

Level Planning/Design

As mentioned within my literature review, careful planning needs to be done when it comes to the level design for the action level I, especially since it will be tailored to have multiple paths all leading to the same end. It will need to make use of all the different kind of level direction elements in multiple different places with different combos of each one to have a fair comparison between them all. This will be used as the test to see which LDE's are more powerful than others.

From the literature review and other small articles or posts that have been used, there is now a good range of level design elements to use. These can all be adapted and varied based on the environment and the atmospheric setting.

Using these maps that have been drawn up showing the layout for each level and placement of each level design element. This will allow the ability to see when other level design elements

43 become more powerful so that notes of them can be made for the in the final document. The notes on the side explain certain areas where major design elements, like choices etc. are used.

From here the plans will be used to build the level within UDK, setting up all level design elements listed on the maps. this will be where certain elements change from testing and implementation issues but all base features will remain the same to what they were design with on the sketch.

In regards to the level from "FEAR 2: Project Origin", It will be tested first of all multiple times and a map will be made of that level as well in the same style with each level design element listed. Results Collecting

When it comes to the testing there will be a computer set up with the action level and the "FEAR 2" level, in order for them to work they will need to install the UDK editor on the computer in question as well as "FEAR2: Project Origin". After the levels are working "Fraps" will be set up to record everything on the screen. There will also be headphone required so that the participant can hear all the sound that they need to. Next the participant comes in and the observer takes the maps and sits and watch them as they progress throughout the levels. While they progress the observer will be plotting their route on a copy of the maps made earlier that have each level design element marked on them. After all twenty participants have played the levels, the observer will go through each video and note on each map their route if anything was missed before, what elements were successful and makes notes where each one stood out more. This information will be what all the information in the results analysis will be referenced from.

Final Results/Conclusion

After all the data collection is complete the findings will be placed into various different graphs and tables to clearly show the findings. This will be followed by an in depth conclusion of the whole test which will detail which LDE's were the most used and some of

44 the reasons behind why they work so well and why some didn't work as well. Doing this will make the findings reliable to other researchers doing similar studies.

Instrument Development

During the course of the development of the Action Level, a few close friends and family were asked to test the level for bugs, competition time, visibility and lighting, making sure events happen when they needed too etc. This proved useful as there were a quite a few bugs that needed to be fixed , mainly being when it came down to the complex systems for the level created within kismet. The main issues came down to the custom AI path finding and missing collisions on meshes when they had become animated through matinee. The AI was broken due to the commands they had been given only running once and after that had completed they stood still and completely ignored the player, This was fixed by adding in a search for the player and placing it on loop. From there this was linked into the attack functions within the kismet AI and the bots after then always seek out the player once they have been spawned. The meshes losing their collisions was a result from them being converted to a "mover" actor so that it could be animated within matinee. This effected every door within the level, most of which opened quick enough for it not to be noticeable. There is however a door that requires a switch to be pressed to be opened, but this door could just be walked through and major events within the level could be skipped. To fix this blocking volumes were placed over the mesh and animated to move alongside the door within the matinee. Because blocking volumes do not lose their collision when animated this became the new collision for the door and fixed the issue. After these fixes had been made a few more tests were made to ensure sound worked and made sense, to make sure the AI didn't break in any other major way and just other general mishaps like incorrect model placement. The participants who took part within the testing phase have had none of their data saved so that it cannot be used for the results, nor will they be asked to be a participant for the actual

45 tests because they would already know where to go and where each level design element within the level is.

As for the testing of the horror level (the F.E.A.R. 2 Demo) the project designer was the only tester for it in terms of being used within this experiment. He played the level multiple times to test the length of the demo. Most importantly however he played the level multiple times to plot out a map of the whole demo and mark within it each level design element he could find. This was done multiple times to make sure each level design element within the level had been found and listed within the map.

After these tests were done the project moved onto the testing phase.

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Results and Analysis
Here are the results from testing phase. See Appendix: 1B. for the videos for each participant and see Appendix: 1C for the maps following each participants path throughout both levels.

Also because of the different nature of both genres, no comparisons will be made between the two genres at this stage, the results are just representative of the genre they are within.

Action Genre Results
Table 1: Action Genre Level Direction Elements results

Times Elements are Action Pipes Followed Vents Followed Signs followed Clutter observed Alarms followed Enemies killed Darkness traversed Weapons picked up Medkits used Intel found Flashing lights explored Cover used Total Used 7 3 95 25 125 139 10 60 41 11 29 46 591

Total Number of Elements 20 20 260 60 280 160 20 80 60 20 40 80 1100 Percentage 35 15 37 42 45 87 50 75 68 55 73 58 54

This table of results contains mostly percentages of the level direction elements that influenced the participants paths as they progressed through the level. There is also an

47 "Enemies killed" result which works differently compared to the others. The "Enemies killed" results are based on how many enemies were killed depending on which path the participant took throughout the levels. This is because some of the paths result in AI spawning in to attack the player and some paths do not. As you can see in Table 1, 87% of enemies were killed throughout all the tests. From analysis of the videos and path comparison across the maps, we can see that the majority of players all took the same path, which resulted in the second AI rarely being spawned and the third and forth AI nearly always being spawned. These AI spawns were specifically placed as markers to see which level design elements attracted the players more.

What this proves in both cases here is that the flashing alarms that lured the participants away from the second AI spawn were more powerful at luring players around the map than the piping going around the walls that did lead into the AI spawn. This is further backed up by the result for "piping followed" only happening 35% of the time. As for the spawns later on, it goes on to prove that a resource that has a need generated for it, in this case, the med packs, is much more powerful than the flashing alarms as well as signs pointing the way. This was proven by over 75% of players walking into the first med pack room in order to top up their health which had been depleted before by at least one enemy AI encounter.

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Table 2: Action Genre Results Bar chart

Action Genre Results Graph
100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0

Percentage

Looking at other results within the table and chart, you can see that 75% of the weapons in the tests were acquired by players. During the observation of these tests it was evident that nearly every player ran up to the broken doors within the level to see what was on the other side. This is a clear sign that curiosity is a powerful level direction element because players would go out of their way to look across one of these doors, simillar to how seeing this door in F.E.A.R. 2 in figure 25 would draw a player in out of curiosity. Further analysis from this shows that once a player see's an item on the other side of the broken door on value, the example in this case being the shock rifle on the other side of the first broken door encountered, the majority of players will actively search for the way round to get to that weapon, even if it means going through very dark areas which usually signifies danger. This is a clear example of risk and reward to make a player seek out a bonus objective and how to extend the play time of a level.

What was also an interesting result is that the flashing alarms and the signs pointing the way to go were both followed closely by the same amount of times, with only 7% difference between the two. This shows that players will follow flashing lights as a guide like they would follow signs. Evidence to further prove how these flashing lights lure an player is the 73% of the major flickering lights in the test luring place down into their area. Upon further

49 analysis of the maps from this genre, it shows that in the start the majority of players use the flashing alarms that are in abundance but they then seamlessly swap to the signs when they start to appear later on in the level. This means that these two level design elements work very well together as quick forms of level direction and can be used in most levels together to achieve a desired direction. This prevents overuse of just one of these level design elements and allows for some variety in the level design process.

A result that came of no surprise was how powerful the cover was in the final room of the level. The cover in this room was specially placed to test single room level direction. What is mean by this is making the player move a certain way around a room for whatever reason is needed, simillar to the way Commander has been set up in figure 20. From the layout of this room's cover you can see I was trying to lure the player around the south side of the room. By looking at Table 2 you can see a large amount of cover was used but by looking at the maps you can see that the majority of players only used the first two pieces of cover and if they still needed anymore after that they used the third piece in the middle. I believe the cause for this was down to the enemy AI's that spawned not posing enough of a threat and that the players usually had killed them before they needed to use the cover that lured them south.

Interestingly the "Intel received" results came back with 55% of participants finding the intel. This was a test to see that if a player was told to find something if they would go out their way to find it. The results came back and it shows that technically more players do search for it, but this was by a very small margin. If this part of the test was to be redone it would be changed to offer a better incentive to the player to find the secondary objective because the current one doesn't offer any incentive when the idea is presented to the player.

The biggest anomaly in these results is the unexpectedly low score for the vents being followed. This was very interesting because the vents use the exact same principle as the piping but scored much lower. There are a few reasons this could have happened. One is there were other level designed elements that were more powerful, the shock rifle spawn looks to be the cause for this. Another could be that the player didn't notice it that well and it therefore didn't lead them. Further testing would be required in order to fully find out what the cause for this anomaly could be.

50 Horror Genre Results

Table 3: Horror Genre Results Table

Horror Lighting Followed Child Alma Seen Teen Alma Seen Med Kit Used/Picked up Flickering Lights followed Dark Area Explored Weapon Cache pickup Ghosts Avoided Points of Interest Examined Blood Trail Follow Cover Used Total 221 82 90 77 99 76 63 87 90 27 222 1134 380 100 100 120 180 280 100 140 140 40 460 2040

% 58 82 90 64 55 27 63 62 64 68 48 56

These results follow the same system as the previous action genres results, each number in the final column is the overall percentage of times a level direction element influenced a player. However observation changed a lot when doing these tests due to the linear nature of this level.

The action level was especially designed to have multiple ways of getting from start to finish with different level design elements at each turning. This demo has just one path from beginning to end, so how the level design elements were decided when observing these tests were; if a player looked at or very close near to a level design element and moved in the direction because of it, that counted as a successful level direction element.

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Table 4: Horror Genre Results Bar chart

100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0

The first thing noticeable within the results from these tests is that both the Alma sightings scored very highly. During the testing these offered a very interesting revelation, the idea of the little girl and the older, dead version, is to scare the player away from them. Now for the older "Teen Alma" this did it's job 90% of the time, the only reason it wasn't 100% was because it is harder to scare some people than it is other and she didn't scare them at all. What this caused was the players to, most of the time, run away from her and further down the developers intended path. However, with "Child Alma" things went odd. Instead of players running away from her, like they would "Teen Alma" or the from the rats in Figure 6, the players followed her and tried to interact with her. Now this was intended in the starting area, but later on in the demo when the idea is to flee from her, some players even went as far as to follow her into the darkness to see where she went. Even though this was not the intended thing for her to do 100% of the time, it still caused influence over the players choice of path throughout the game and this is an example of how level design elements can be used for many different things and in many different ways.

Another element that turned out interesting was the ghosts encountered in the school section of the demo. During this phase the room light becomes very dark and the player can barely see anything except for flashes of Alma and the attacking ghosts. It's important to note there

52 that the results here are not how many ghosts the player saw or killed, but how many ghosts altered the players movement, for example if it made the player run back the way they came or charge straight at it guns blazing. What was interesting with the ghosts was that they were the main cause for people running into a corner and trying to wait out the sequence shooting any ghost that came near them. This is probably because the ghosts flooded the area and attacked from all sides so the player backed into a corner to try and fight back. This can be used to force a player into an area you want them to go into by correct spawning of enemies.

A big thing to note here is the lighting. There was more lighting throughout the map than any other level design element, which is to be expected because lighting is a key feature is making a horror setting look correct. The issue here is because there was so much of it there was a lot of light that the player didn't see as well as did see, and all those lights that the player didn't see really brought down the results for both the normal lighting and the flickering lighting. This still didn't stop them from scoring quite high percentages from the amount of use they gave and that shows how often it was used and how often it needs to be used. For future testers doing similar projects the lighting will probably need to be ranked in a different way in order to not have major impacts in the results that don't reflect anything because some of the lights are there just to create the atmosphere, not to guide the player.

What was good to see was participants being drawn towards the points of interest in the level. These included things like major colour changes in the scenery, very similar to the scene within figure 8, stand out objects, an object that was recently interacted with etc. Some of them caused the player to avoid them, which was their intention as well. After scoring pretty high in the percentage which is reflected within Table 4's bar chart, it shows that using points of interest do work well in this setting as a method of luring a person down a secret path.

The final results are to do with weapon pickups and med packs. These results turned out to be very similar to the action genre's, which is not surprising because it is a trait they both share. The need for weapons and health packs were generated through combat with the enemies. What was very interesting however is not many participants actively searched for new weapons within this game, it always a case of they stumbled upon them by chance. Over 75% of players didn't find the rocket launcher, over 50% of players didn't find the sniper rifle despite it being out in plain view when they exited the subway. This was due to two reasons, one it was placed on top of boxes that had soldiers all around them, so the player was

53 preoccupied with combat. The second reason was the soliders the player fought dropped so much ammo for their weapons that usually a participant would never have to worry about ammo or weapon switching (there were a few exceptions to this however) so they didn;t have to seek out new weapons in the map to replace their own. Now there was a need for these higher powered weapons, but the player didn't meet it until the end of the demo when they had to take on an armoured enemy. By this point these weapons were far away or very well hidden and the player was stuck with the weapons they had been using throughout the demo.

Others factors that could have Effected my Results

There were many factors outside of the game's environment themselves that could have effected my results in a multitude of ways.

First of all my sample size was made up entirely of male due to no female being present whenever I performed my testing. It has been proven that women play games in a different mind set that men and that mindset would have been likely to produce slightly if not very different results in most areas.

Another factor comes down to skill with first person shooter games. Some people play these games all the time, some people hardly play these games at all. A person who plays these types of games a lot with have an advantage over someone who doesn't and it will also generate less need for things like weapon ammo and health which will result in them not needing to see them out in the map whereas a person with no FPS skill will be constantly searching them out.

And finally as mentioned before, some people are easier to scare than others when it comes to horror games, and some people like shooting things a lot more than others. It comes down to how immersed a player can get into the game they are playing and not every player will get fully immersed meaning things like story info or shock horror frights will not work for them and those level design elements become pointless to them.

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Conclusion
The overall results from the tests done in this project have given very good results. They have proven what level direction elements work the best and why others do not work well at all. The results can now be used by any level designer to go through their own levels and ensure that people will be able to navigate correctly along the intended path most of the time. The results can also be compared to the images of existing games that have been listed below the literature review. For example look at Figure 21 and Figure 22, these are two games that are from each genre but have the same lighting style in regards to composition. This is because of the way it highlights an area to create curiosity, this is a perfect example of how to use lighting correctly in games.

If the project was to continue, further testing would be done within both genres to allow for further experiments with different combinations of level design elements. Furthermore a horror level would be created similar to the way the current action genre level was in order to better test the level design elements. Also having seen how the horror level design elements were adapted within a released game it would also be interesting to see how the elements are adapted within an action released game. This way all bases are covered and clear examples for everything can be given.

Some tests and results however didn't quite go as expected. As previously mentioned the lighting test within the horror level was very hard to plot correctly and there was quite a bit of confusion when the observer was trying to plot them down, which will have effected the results undoubtedly. Luckily, the importance of lighting at a guiding aid is pretty common knowledge and proving it works wasn't as major as proving other level direction elements within this test. Also the information within the literature review covers how to effectively use lighting as a level direction element anyway so anyone reading this can still find out information and achieve desired results from this project.

Another addition to the project would be of a programmer could be brought on board to develop a special program that plots a players path throughout the level for you and recorded important statistics that could be used to enhance the final results even further. This is similar to what the company "Splash Damage" do for their current upcoming game "Dirty Bomb" with a system called "Echo".

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A must change for this project is taking it away from a male only participant base and make it open to people who are not knowledgeable of how games are made, this would have effected the results less than having an entire participants group of games designers.

This project is able to help anyone who reads it in expanding their knowledge on how to use level direction elements and can easily be used to improve a level designers level experience. The research doesn't stop there however and this information can be more than expanded upon by other people into different genres and new ways of making level direction elements.

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Bibliography
Arkane Studios. (2012, October 12). Dishonored. Lyon, France. Bioware. (2012, March 9). Mass Effect 3. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Bungie. (2008). Level Design in HALO 3. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from Bungie: www.bungie.net/publications.aspx De Jong, S. (2007). The Hows and Whys of Level Design - Second Edition. Sjoerd De Jong. Douce, S. (2010). GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 2. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from World of Level Design: http://www.worldofleveldesign.com/categories/wold-memberstutorials/sylvain_douce/gdc-2010-level-design-part2-sylvain-douce.php Douce, S. (2010). GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 4. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from World Of Level Design: http://www.worldofleveldesign.com/categories/wold-memberstutorials/sylvain_douce/gdc-2010-level-design-part4-sylvain-douce.php Douce, S. (2010). GDC 2010 Level Design Notes Part 5. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from World Of Level Design: http://www.worldofleveldesign.com/categories/wold-memberstutorials/sylvain_douce/gdc-2010-level-design-part5-sylvain-douce.php Monolith Productions. (2009, 03 13). F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin. Kirkland, Washington, USA. World of Level Design. (2009). Horror/Survival Level Design Part 1. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from World of Level Design: http://www.worldofleveldesign.com/categories/level_design_tutorials/horror-fear-leveldesign/part1-survival-horror-level-design-cliches.php World of Level Design. (2009). Horror/Survival Level Design Part 2. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from World of Level Design: http://www.worldofleveldesign.com/categories/level_design_tutorials/horror-fear-leveldesign/part2-survival-horror-level-design-anticipation-pacing.php World of Level Design. (2009). Horror/Survival Level Design Part 3. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from World of Level Design: http://www.worldofleveldesign.com/categories/level_design_tutorials/horror-fear-leveldesign/part3-survival-horror-level-design-story-environment.php

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Appendix
1.A Participant Consent Forms

58 1.B Participant Testing Footage 2x CD Submission

59 1.C Action Genre Maps

60 1.D Horror Genre Maps