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Overview:

Styx is a fear-based action/adventure FPS being developed using the Unreal Development Kit.
This game will take control of people's most powerful emotion: fear. The game takes place deep in a
cave that has been excavated for archaeological purposes by a large corporation. The player is thrown
into this dark environment with his escape path blocked and the realization that there has been some
horrible event that has left the camp and it's various outposts empty. The player very quickly realizes
that he/she is not alone and lurking in the shadows is some unknown horror that hates light and seeks to
harm the player.

Target Audience:
This game is made for an audience of male and female players between the ages of 18-35.
These players are familiar with common FPS controls and have at least some FPS or adventure game
experience. These players enjoy exploring new environments and solving puzzles. This audience is also
not afraid of being scared and may even enjoy horror movies. These players might be familiar with
Dead Space and other horror games.

Features:
– A unique and beautiful environment.
– Fast-paced action mixed with periods of rest.
– Ambient fear that will leave you shaking.
– Narrative that's intertwined within game play.
– Interesting and challenging obstacles.
– Minimalistic interface.
– Simple controls with an easy learning curve.

Premise:

Date: 2047
Place: The Balkan Peninsula, 3700 meters below sea level
Reason:
In 2046 a caving team discovered a massive labyrinth beneath the Alps, they explored it for
days until they had to return to the surface for supplies. Upon revealing their discovery, governments
sent expeditions and teams into the underground network, discovering a vast subterranean world
beneath our feet. Filled with unique wildlife, the labyrinth is a veritable goldmine of untapped
resources and biology ripe for study. Recently, in some of the deeper areas, ancient pots, tools, and the
occasional ruin have been discovered, leading humanity to believe that there was once an ancient
offshoot of the human race that lived beneath our feet.
Outpost 34 - "Styx" 3700 meters below sea level, Personnel count: 17
The research outpost, commonly referred to as Styx, is the 34th outpost in the Balkan area. Set
up by the corporation Ulisect for advanced study into the archeological sites in the area. It is named
Styx after the underground river that runs nearby the outpost. The area that the Outpost is in is
surprisingly barren when compared the the lush wildlife and subterranean plants found elsewhere in the
tunnel network. However, Ulisect states that the possibility of finding archeological discoveries makes
the area worth the investment.
The Ulisect corporation had just finished the excavation of their third advanced artifact when
they discovered a network of thin tunnels leading away from the archeological site. A team was sent to
explore the tunnel network shortly before the entire outpost went offline.
Character: You play a technician sent down to replace the previous one who was incapacitated after
being bitten by a subterranean spider. A technician's main duty is to keep the outpost and its machinery
running.
Origin of Creatures and Artifacts:
The creatures trapped below the surface were actually once a highly advanced sect of humanity
that lived below ground. These people lived in a series of large colonies deep under the surface. They
were split into two castes: the leaders and the workers. They enjoyed the benefits of highly advanced
technology, perhaps the result of a material or substance that remains previously undiscovered to our
world. The workers had no interaction with the surface but it is possible that the leaders had very
limited interaction with the local population, perhaps exchanging ideas. Archeological dating seems to
indicate that this civilization was at it's peak around the golden age of Greek Civilization. Perhaps their
interaction with the Greeks could explain both their advanced ideas and technology and perhaps even
their religion.
However, a catastrophic event, most likely a very large earthquake, seems to have trapped the
civilization and killed off most of it's leaders. Cut off from the outside world and without the
knowledge of how to use the majority of their technology, the worker caste eventually adapted to their
dark environment, slowly becoming more animal-like and evolving to survive in the harsh
underground. Thousands of years later it is possible that these "humans" no longer resemble anything
even remotely human. The workers currently treat the ruins of their past civilization as holy relics and
any intruders as prey. The Ulisect corporation, while digging in the area, stumbled upon the first of
these ancient ruins. Their scientists could not figure out it's function, but it was clear that this thing was
far beyond our technology. They declared it as possibly alien and in an attempt to keep the ruins for
themselves, played it off as though they were simply on an archeological expedition with no significant
findings.
Titan Culture:

Titan culture thrived around a vast, underground network of small cities connected by labyrinths
of paths and numerous smaller collectives or outposts. Titans were, in many ways, very similar to their
surface counterparts. They practiced a polytheistic religion based around multiple deities that they
believe existed within the vast underground. The acquired food through domesticated animals and
through multiple unique and particularly nutritious strains of fungus that required no light to grow.
They were grown and harvested in massive quantities in a similar fashion to how surface agriculture
worked.
Titan society was split into two distinct sects. The ruling class was an elite group responsible for
governing all aspects of society. The Titan government was ruled by a group of a dozen ruler elders,
each representing a different section of the government. Rulers were born into the class and could not
be removed unless they committed a serious crime. The rulers were, through some process of primitive
genetic engineering, physiologically different than humans on the surface. They were much larger, as
tall as 9 feet, and usually much stronger. They were assumed to also be much smarter than the working
class. The rulers were also the only members of titan society that were able to interact with their
technology, which could have been due to a genetic change or simply because the technology was too
complex for the working class to understand.
The working class were almost identical to their surface counterparts, except for slightly larger
eyes that developed over time due to the relative lack of light. The workers were responsible for the
daily activities of society including food production and the continuing excavation of new tunnel
networks. The workers were not slaves, but possessed little freedom when compared to the ruling class.
They could not transgress their status within society and their careers were usually assigned to them at
birth. Education for the working class was career-driver from early childhood.

Titan Technology:

Titan technology remains a mystery to anyone that attempts to study it. Titans possessed an
incredibly complex form of wireless energy that was broadcasted from a central power source
somewhere within the cave network to numerous smaller generators that provided wireless power to
any other technology in the area. It is still unknown how the power was originally generated. Their
technology was extremely advanced even by today's standards but it was used in a reserved fashion.
Most members of society lived their lives without any aid by technology, which was focused around
things like excavation equipment, water collection and official communication. It is safe to assume that
the technology was also used for defensive purposes.

Interaction with Titan Technology:

Interaction with Titan technology was limited to the rulers only. Research suggests that rulers
held some sort of key that identified them as rulers to the technology. Thus, the technology was built
with the specific intent of being kept out of the hands of the common citizen. No one to date has been
able to replicate interaction with the technology, so information is limited.
World and Environment:

The game takes place in an excavated cave in the near future. This cave mixes natural caverns
and formations with excavated tunnels and areas. Sections of the cave were inhabited by the excavation
and archeological crew, so some areas are filled with pre-assembled habitation modules, mining
equipment and other machinery. The cave is filled with dark area and lit mostly by a network of
lighting put in place by the crew.
The equipment used by Ulisect in the caverns is slightly more advanced then current
technology, but most of the sub-terranian teams prefer tried and tested equipment. The result is a mix of
flashy new technology and older, used equipment.

Styx Outpost
The outpost is broken down into a series of sub-areas. These areas include an administrative
section, the main science lab, 3 archeological areas and a forward mining base. The main areas are
connected by large mining tunnels for easy access, although the event that left the outpost empty seems
to have collapsed some of the tunnels. A large subterranean river runs between the main lab and the
mining outpost, which has been bridged by Ulisect teams.

Administrative Area:

The large access elevator in this area makes it the forward place for receiving personnel and
supplies. The elevator is large enough to handle very large cargo, including some pre-assembled
machines. This area also houses the main generator for the outpost, although each sub-area has their
own individual backup generator with a nearly limitless lifespan.
Only a few meters away from the elevator is the main administrative module. This module
contains a briefing room and the office of the on-duty administrator. The module also houses an array
of floodlights on the roof.
This area
connects to the main
habitation and
communication areas
via two off shooting
tunnels. However, these
tunnels seemed to have
been blocked in
whatever chaos took
place here. The
remaining open tunnel
leads to a machinery
storage area and then to
the main lab.

Obstacles:

The first obstacle


that the player is faced
with is that there are
initially only a few
lights on right next to the elevator. The rest of the area is entirely pitch black. The player must find the
generator at the edge of the lights and turn it on using the interaction button.
Now that the lights are on, the next challenge is to explore the Hab module for any clues as to
what has happened. Inside the administrative office the player will find a gun on one of the desks.
Interacting with the gun will allow them to pick it up, which completes this challenge.
The final challenge is to move onto the roof once the inside power has gone out and turn on the
auxiliary floodlights, allowing the player to move onto the next area.

Important Assets:

-The Elevator: This is the collapsed cargo elevator that the player entered the cave on.
-The Generator: This generator provides power to this section of the facility. It is initially on standby
mode after a power surge.
-The Hab Module: This module contains a briefing area and administrative offices.

Narrative Importance:

This section familiarizes the player with the gameplay, including the interaction button. It allows the
player to initially explore under stress-free conditions and begins setting the back story through the use
of subtle narrative. The monster only begins to get aggressive once the lights inside the Hab Module
are turned out.
Machinery Storage Area:

This is an area where multiple smaller single-man operated drilling machines are being stored.
As the player walks into this are, they immediately notice that a large cave-in has happened, blocking
what looks like a main route out of the area. Beyond the cave-in is an area where two drills are visible.
As the player walks towards the area, the lights shut off behind him/her. One of the drills is being
repaired, but another is hooked up to a small generator. The player is able to interact with the drill by
hitting the green button on the control board at the back of the drill.
Interacting
with the drill turns on
it's lights, revealing
another drill in the
darkness. Interaction
with this drill does
the same thing,
revealing yet another
drill that has seems to
have crashed through
a section of the wall,
revealing a chasm on
the other side.
Interaction with the
third drill lights up
the chasm. The player
walks into the chasm
and notices a thin,
natural stone bridge
spanning the gap.
When the player
attempts to walk
towards the bridge, the creature makes it's presence clear by dropping small rocks onto the bridge. As
the player tries to cross the bridge, the monster will attempt to throw more larger rocks and knock the
player off. Upon crossing the bridge, the player can move onto the next section.

Obstacles:

The main obstacles in this section is the player figuring out how to turn on the drill lights and
crossing the bridge. The drill control panel contains a glowing green light, which should guide the
player to interact with it. The bridge involves timing and proper prediction of when the rocks will fall.
If the player attempts to dash across the bridge, the rocks will knock him/her off.

Main Lab:

The main science lab is a module placed in a partially natural, partially dug out cavern. The lab
houses a number of scientific computers, instruments and devices all intended to be used in the study of
the ruins found deeper in the cave. The lab's floodlights can light up most of the surrounding cavern
and it's generator supplies power to the outlying archeology sights and the lights connecting them.

The cavern that the lab is located in has four connecting tunnels. Two of them are larger tunnels
dug by machinery while the other two are natural pathways that lead to the recently discovered
archeological areas.

Science Lab Wing:

After the discovery of the titan artifacts, the Ulisect corporation moved a large lab module to
one of the open caverns near the three discovered sites. This wing is devoted to science and was
populated by a small crew of scientists before the incident. The lab holds some pieces of titan artifacts
that were being studied. One of the artifacts in particular seems to have attracted a lot of attention from
the team. This artifact was code named “Kronos Stone”.

Security Wing:

A large portion of the lab module was blocked from worker access and marked as restricted
entrance only. This was the security wing. It was responsible for monitoring all activities in the cavern
and housed a small contingent of armed and well-trained guards. There was also a number of large
weapon lockers. Ulisect went through particular trouble too ensure that this module was secure and
kept out of sight of any prying eyes.

Obstacles:

First Encounter:
The player runs across this area twice during the level. The first time, the player only has access
to the science wing. The security wing is blocked by darkness on the outside and a locked door on the
inside. The player enters the area first near a large power generator that connects to a large group of
wires strung to the dark lab. The wires are held up by power poles, with a switch and red/green light at
the bottom. The player must activate these power poles, by interacting with them, in the right order to
produce four green lights. When this happens, the lab will light up and allow the player access inside.
Now that the player is inside the lab, they find a series of research desks. Some desks contain
what looks like parts of a creature, but are to mangled to reveal anything. There are two doors on the
inside, both are locked. One leads to the security wing and another leads outside again. On one of the
desks is a strange looking object of unknown origin. This object is the Kronos Stone and gives the
player access to interaction with the Titan technology, although this is not made immediately clear to
the player. Upon nearing the object, it begins to float in the air and emit a green and purple glow. In
order to advance, the player must pick up the Kronos Stone.
Now in possession of the stone, the other outside door unlocks, giving the player access to the
lit tunnels leading to the next area.

Second Encounter:
The player has now passed by the second archeological site and returned to this section near a
lit entrance to the security wing. The player enters the security wing in total darkness. Only the small
patch of floor that the player is standing on is lit from the outside. On the interior wall, just to the left of
the doorway, is a glowing green lightswitch. The player activates this and the lights flicker on to reveal
a bloodbath. Body parts, blood stains and bullet impact marks litter the wing. At that point, a security
breach warning plays, shutting the door behind the player and locking it. The player must deactivate the
warning from the computer console, which then unlocks the exterior doors. The player can now exit to
the bridge section.

Important Assets:

The lab will be the most important asset in this section. It has already been used in the
habitation section and can be easily reconstructed due to it's modular nature. The other noteworthy
asset is the Kronos Stone, which must indicate it's importance to the player at only a short glance.

Narrative Importance:

This section reveals a lot to the player. The science wing reveals that Ulisect was actively
perusing research into the titan artifacts and the creatures down here. The Kronos Stone interacts with
the player and recognizes the player as a potential user/owner. In a way, it reveals that the player's
character has a special purpose within the caves and now wields an immense power. The security wing
reveals that Ulisect was aware of the threat that the creatures posed, but were completely unable to
provide adequate protection.

Archeological Areas:

These sites contain the secret that Ulisect has been trying to keep from the outside world. These
sites contain unearthed structures that seem to contain a technology more advanced then our own.
Scientists have yet been unable to figure out their exact origin or purpose, but an array of archeological
equipment remain in these areas for studying and monitoring the sites.

Archeological Site 1: Titan Power Transmitter

Unknown to the Ulisect scientists, the structure labeled Arc-1-3b9 is actually an ancient
wireless power generator. These structures were placed throughout the Titan underground network to
provide local power to any other structures in the area. The device itself looks like a ball standing atop
a sleek and curving pillar.

Obstacles:

When the player discovers this site, the monster will have knocked out all the lights behind the
player, leaving them trapped in the Arc site area. The first obstacle is to find and interact with the Titan
Power Generator. Possessing the Kronos Stone allows the player to interact with these devices. Upon
interaction, the device will power up and send out a shock wave of power, knocking out all lights in the
immediate area. The only light left will be the purple glow of the generator, but it is bright enough to
illuminate a pile of flammable barrels and equipment sitting near the entrance to another tunnel.
Shooting these barrels will cause then to leak fuel and set on fire. The already leaking trail of
fuel will flow down the inclined, short tunnel and into the river below. The player must quickly run
through the fiery tunnel and into the water, where the spot lights from the bridge will light the player's
next path.

Important Assets:

The Power Transmitter is the most critical asset in this area. It needs to clearly signify it's
purpose to the player and also set the aesthetic look of the coming artifacts. There flammable barrels
and the subsequent fire when shot is a technical challenge that the team should not overlook.

Narrative Importance:

This section is the first in the important archeological areas that attempt to reveal background
about the Titans and their technology. Interaction with this artifact makes it immediately clear that Titan
technology was advanced even by modern standards. It also reveals that the player has the ability to
interact with these objects relatively easily when compared to the many failed attempts before him/her.
Finally, interaction with this artifact allows interaction with any other artifact in the area, essentially
providing a story basis for why the titan technology begins to come to life.

Archeological Site 2: Hidden Titan Bridge

The player exits the burning tunnel onto a thin stone bridge that spans over a raging river. The
bridge and the river below is lit by the massive spotlights on the man-made bridge further down the
river. The player crosses the bridge into what looks like another tunnel, only to find a dead end. At that
point, the floor gives way, dropping the player into a water-filled cove that exits into the river below.
The river's current immediately begins dragging the player down river. The player passes under the
man-made bridge and notices lights on the right bank, further down stream. The player must move to
the right side of the stream and exit the flowing river into the lit area or else the river will drag them
over a massive waterfall and into an early death.
This area has a bunch of archeological equipment and temporary lighting focused on what
seems to be two large pillars perched on the side of a large cliff leading into a dark abyss. The pillars
are clearly of Titan origin. One of the pillars begins to with an interface similar to the first artifact when
the player approaches it. When the player interacts with this artifact, a large stone slab floats down
from the ceiling and into place in front of the player, hovering above the dark void. Stepping on this
slab will cause another to fall and as this process is repeated, a bridge will be formed, allowing the
player to cross to the next section.

Obstacles:

The main obstacles in this area is avoiding the massive waterfall and interacting with the bridge.
At this point, there is a possibility to allow a type of puzzle for the bridge that involves the player
stepping on slabs in the right order, but that is subject to scope-related restraints.

Important Assets:

The most important asset in this area is the bridge and it's proper technical execution including
kismet-activated matinee sequences. The river and the subsequent water will also be an asset that
requires a particular amount of attention.

Narrative Importance:

This artifact further displays the technological ability of the Titans. Although it is never
specifically referenced during gameplay, the river that the player falls into is the Styx river, which in
Greek mythology was the river that doomed souls crossed before entering hell.

Mining Site:
This is the forward site of Ulisect's continued expansion into the cave network. A small fleet of
digging machines and earth movers are stored in this area. Leading up to this area is a large bridge that
spans the Styx river, 50 feet below. The bridge is equipped with floodlights facing off the side, lighting
the river below.
Beyond it is the area which Ulisect was continuing to expand it's tunnels before the Event. Most
of their heavy digging machinery is stored here, at the end of a very large tunnel. Piles of dug up rubble
and rocks that have not been dumped into the river litter the area. Leading up to the area, along the
large tunnel, are a series of elevated catwalks that allowed personnel to move about without getting in
the way of the constantly moving machinery. The catwalks are lit by lights hung on the ceiling, but the
floor of the tunnel remains covered in darkness except for a few minor areas. The player must navigate
the broken and unstable catwalks in order to make it to safety of the lit mining area.

Obstacles:

This area will be mostly unscripted platform jumping. Falling into the ground will result in
quick death unless the player can make it back to the limited number of ladders connected to the
catwalks.

Important Assets:

The catwalks and machinery in this area will be constructed out of existing static mesh
components and therefore do not require any major art assets.

Archeological Site 3: Tunnel Maze and Titan Door.

Leading away from the mining site are two tunnels with lights strung throughout them. These
tunnels are the entrance to a vast and complex maze of tunnels that the Ulisect team discovered just
before the Event. Navigation through these tunnels is difficult under normal circumstances, but during
this area, the monster will be knocking out lights and wires and in attempt to catch the player in the
darkness. The player must move quickly and follow a path of lights that are quickly turning off.
Pausing at the wrong time or moving too slow will result in death.
When the player finally clears the labyrinth, he/she is greeted with final archeological site. Dug
out of a slab of rock and dimly lit by temporary lighting is a massive metal door covered in carvings
and engravings. Matching a series of symbols in the right order will unlock the door, allowing the
player to pass through.
Once through the door, the player walks out onto a ledge spanning over a massive chasm.
Growls can be heard from every direction, seeming as if there are a hundred creatures in the darkness.
Suddenly, the ledge gives way and the player drops into the abyss.

Obstacles:

The tunnels will be one of the most difficult challenges in the level. The player must be able to
navigate efficiently and identify diverging paths quickly before the darkness catches up. . The locked
door presents a logical challenge where the player must identify the puzzle and then solve it.

Important Assets:

The Titan door will be the most important asset in this section and the most artistically
demanding. The animation of lining up correct symbols will present a significant technical challenge
and will be subject to change according to scope limitations.

Narrative Importance:

This is the ending to the level and thus holds significant important to the story. The discovery of
the door tells that Ulisect may have let this (these) creatures loose by disturbing them. The final cavern
should convey that there are more than one creature in these caves, possibly hundreds of them and they
are aware of the player's presence. Finally, this area should set up the possibility of this story
continuing far beyond just this level. The player should get the feeling that they have only scratched the
tip of the iceberg that is the mystery of these caves.

Aesthetic Direction:
Cave Aesthetics:

The caves in Styx will remain pretty uniform throughout the level. The cave walls are scattered
with large boulders and the dim lighting sometimes grants the illusion that the caves are much bigger
than they actually are. The gave floors will be covered in dirt, which should indicate some sort of path
to the player.
Lighting is of particular importance in the caves. The exact edges of large chasms will never be
shown, creating the feel of massive abysses. Due to the dark nature of the game, lightmass cannot be
used within the caves and must be mimicked. Level designers should also be wary to the nature of
strong, single lights without lightmass to blow out normal maps. Thus, lighting should be kept to a
series of small lights used to mimic one larger lit area.
Scattered around the caves will also be numerous smaller details such as dripping water,
blowing cobwebs and numerous small “creature” caves, where the creature can supposedly move about
the cave in it's own dark network. Stalagmites and Stalagmites should be common in natural cavern
areas, but not the areas dug out by the excavation teams. Rubble, machine parts and evidence of the
teams working in the caves should be constant.

Sound:

Cave sound in Styx covers everything from ambient sounds to reverb volumes. Each section
should have a series of ambient sounds, ranging from a background cave noise to wind gusts and water
drips. Creature sounds should also be present when appropriate and always coming from dark areas
near the player.

Lab/Hab Module Aesthetics:

The lab modules are semi-permanent structures brought down in modular sections and
assembled within the cave network. These structures are made to provide shelter and comfort to those
working within the caves, but can also act as crisis shelters in the case of an emergency. They are
equipped with long-lasting oxygen supplies and built to withstand cave-ins.
These structures convey the feeling of lab-like cleanliness, combined with the look of rigid,
armored strength. They look as if they would be equally as comfortable on the moon. The interior can
be arranged in different fashions, using customizable interior wall pieces. The doors are complex and
armored. They are capable of locking and also providing video surveillance to the outside. The labs
stand on adjustable legs, so they can be placed in areas of varying height or terrain.
Sound:

Sound within the labs should consist of ventilation background noise and various
computer/electronic sounds where appropriate. There should also be the slight buzzing of florecent
lights coming from the ceiling.
The use of ambient sound zones will be important within the labs. These sound zones should
shift the ambient sounds from the cave background to the ventilation sounds of the labs upon entering a
doorway.

Arc Site Aesthetics:

Titan technology is still a mystery to everyone working within the Styx outpost. The artifacts
found seem to be made out of some sort of metal alloy that is dense and heavy, yet smooth to the touch.
A common theme on these artifacts is numerous engravings on the artifacts that range from pictures to
symbols similar to the Greek alphabet. The exact significance or purpose of these symbols is a heavily
debated topic.

Sound:

Upon activation, these artifacts will play a sound that conveys the energy given off by the
artifacts. It should be a “glowing” sound that comes from within the object itself. Interaction with the
object should also play similar sounds, although lighter and softer.

Gameplay:
Staying in the light:
The creature determined to make a meal of out the player has adapted itself to the extremely
low-light environment of deep cave networks. While it is unclear exactly how strong it's other senses
are, it's hatred to bright lights seems to indicate that it relies at least partially on it's vision. To this end,
the best way to survive is to remain in light areas whenever possible. The creature has the ability to
navigate the caves at an extremely quick pace and it will be there in the event that the player steps out
of lighted areas.
This creature, however, is not dumb and will attempt to remove the lights whenever possible.
The player will not enjoy the luxury of knowing that a light will always remain on. There will be many
instances when the player must move quickly to avoid lights that are being destroyed or are only able to
stay light for a limited amount of time.
If the player does wander into an area of darkness, the creature will attempt to attack the player.
At first this may be in the form of a damaging claw swipe: done enough times and this can prove fatal.
However, as the player advances into the cave, the creature becomes more enraged and determined to
harm the player. At later stages, the dark can be instantly deadly.

Environmental Obstacles:

There will be a series of challenges that the player must overcome to continue moving forward in the
cave. Some of these may be as simple as navigation, while other solutions will require more creative
thinking. The player will usually be guided through these challenges simply by paying attention to
his/her surrounding environment. Hints and clues will be presented to the player through the use of
subtle cues, such as sparks, flickering lights, color-coded signs or other “attention-grabbers”.

Environmental Interaction:

The player will have two main means of interacting with objects in the environment: picking up
or using switches. The player will have the ability to pick up and move or store certain objects within
the environment. These objects will be used to help the player through environmental obstacles. The
player will also have the ability to interact with buttons or switches, usually used to control lights or
other electrical equipment.

Attention Grabbers:

The main method of guiding the player through the dark environment will be through the use of
attention grabbers. These can be broken down into three main groups which sometimes combine
together: Light Sources, Events and Colors.
Light Sources: In a dark environment players will naturally be attracted to light sources. The
player will always attempt to head towards areas of solid light because it signifies safety.
Flickering lights and sparks also serve to grab the attention and guide the player towards an
area.
Events: Events that are triggered within the nearby vicinity of the player can be used to draw
their attention. If a ladder falls from the ceiling, a light bulb bursts or a machine starts up, the
player will be inclined to investigate.
Colors: The use of colors will never be explicitly explained to the player but will become
increasingly apparent quickly within the game. The use of green within the level will almost
always indicate a path, switch or object that will allow the player to advance further.

Combat:
There will be no combat within this vertical slice of Styx. The player will be given a small gun
as a psychological boost, but will never actually get a chance to use it against the creature.

The Gun:

The gun serves mostly as a psychological tool. Although it is used briefly to solve one puzzle, it
is never actually used in combat. The gun can only hold 12 bullets at a time and cannot be reloaded.
Collecting more ammo simply fills the ammo counter back up to 12. Ammo is scattered in important
areas throughout the map, most notably next to the first artifact. The ammo respawns after 30 seconds,
so not being able to complete the gun-critical puzzle is theoretically impossible.
The gun will never be used in combat during this level. However, it sets up groundwork for a
continued game and the use of guns during combat in future levels.

Death:
In the event that the play dies, the game will use a checkpoint system. The player will simply
respawn at the last checkpoint they cross. Players will not know when they cross a checkpoint. There is
not limit on the number of times that a player can die.

Example Gameplay Walk-through:


The player starts with a black screen and the sounds of some structure collapsing around
him/her. The player's vision begins to clear and it is apparent that he is standing next to the rubble of a
massive elevator shaft. A few lights that were attached to the elevator structure remain on, the rest of
the area is black. A spotlight on the elevator is shining on a large generator nearby. The player walks
over and notices that the screen on the green command console says “Emergency surge protocol
executed, press 'E' to reboot”. The player activates the control console.
The generator spins to life. Lights begin to flicker to light slowly in the distance and suddenly
an entire structure is lit up. It looks modular in nature, but clearly built for habitation purposes. It's
lights on it's outer walls light up the surrounding area. A high pitched screech scrapes against the
darkness; it is clear that the screech is not human. The player follows the trail of lights to the door of
the structure, which opens when the player presses “E”.
The room inside the structure is a briefing room. There are chairs, a white board, a few tables
and a banner that reads “Welcome New Guy!”. On one of the walls is another door that leads further
into the structure. The player walks through it into an administrative area filled with desks and
paperwork. On one of the walls is a very large map that seems to map out cave. An area on it is circled
red. The player notices something on one of the desks: it's a case and inside the case is a small pistol.
When the player gets close to the pistol, a green “E” icon appears over it. The player presses “E” and
picks up the pistol.
Suddenly, the lights inside the building cut out. An emergency light attempts to turn on in the
corner of the office but bursts with the power surge. A soft banging on the outside of the building turns
into a fury of banging, scratching and growls. Next to the office is a maintenance closet, it's emergency
light flickers to life and a ladder slams down to the ground from a hatch above, triggered by the
emergency lighting.
The player follows the ladder up to the roof of the structure. Sitting on the side of the structure
is an array of flood lights, linked to a small generator. The generator has an on/off switch on it, painted
green. The player flips the switch and the flood lights shine to life, illuminating an area moving away
from the building and down a large man-made tunnel.

Reward and Ending:


Styx rewards players in two manners: allowing them to advance and giving them a rest.
Completing or solving an environmental obstacle allows the player to continue moving forward in the
level. This is especially important to the player since the use of darkness severely limits their
movement and control of their environment. Additionally, the level will be broken up into periods of
tension and periods of rest. Rest will become a player reward for surviving areas of tension or action. It
allows the player to gather themselves and also provides a limited feeling of safety, which is important
in a fear-based game.

Cinematic Cutscenes:

Intro: This cutscene is mostly a black screen that plays the sounds of a descending elevator. The names
of the development team members and the name of the game flash up briefly during this period.
Suddenly, the sound of creaking metal can be heard and then the sound of the elevator crashing to the
ground below. The black screen fades out, revealing a blinding white light coming from a spotlight.
The scene zooms out of the spotlight and reveals that the camera perspective is laying sideways on the
ground. The camera then mimics the avatar's head movement as he/she stands up, at which point the
cutscene fades into the gameplay screen.
Ending: The player is standing on the ledge looking out in to the massive abyss. Suddenly, the ledge
gives way and the player falls to the bottom. The camera fades to black as sounds of falling rocks and
creature growls can be heard. The camera fades in again, revealing a partially broken light sitting
besides the player, protecting them from the darkness. The camera blurs out again as the player
presumably faints.

Example Trigger Scripts:

All of these scripts are set to be fully repeatable and reactive upon player death:

A standard monster attack volume trigger that is set up to be activated or deactivated using
repeatable triggers. The trigger uses a Boolean system to determine if the volume should be active.

An example of a kismet sequence that causes a light to flicker. The sequence modifies a vector
parameter value on the light's material, while toggling a point light and sound. This particular light uses
a Boolean system to be turned on and off when a trigger is used.
An example of a kismet sequence used to when a drill's engine is turned on, thereby activating
it's lights. The unique aspect of this sequence is that it modifies multiple vector parameter values on the
drill's material, allowing separate control of the main drill lights and the lights on the drill's control
panel.
Setting an object to have rigid body physics upon trigger is easy to do in UDK. However, telling
that object to return to position when the player dies is a different story. This trigger finds the position
and rotation of the object at the start of the level and then makes sure the object is set to that position
before it is triggered by the player.

Controls:
W – Move Forward
A – Move Left
S – Move Backward
D – Move Right

Spacebar- Jump
Control – Crouch

E – Interaction

Left Mouse - Fire


Technology:
This game will be produced using the Unreal Development Kit and will be playable on PCs. 3D work
will be through Autodesk Maya and Zbrush.

Subversion: SVN

The team will be managing tasks, communicating and tracking time through the Unfuddle SVN
repository system. This system not only allows for manageable communication, but provides an
efficient version control repository for the team to work with.

Backups:

The lead designer will make weekly backups of the current repository to an external hard drive.
In the unlikely event that an error or corruption occurs within the repository, the most amount of work
that will be lost is limited to roughly a week.

Risks:
Styx was designed around a low-risk policy. The only animations that have to be done outside
of UDK are the gun animations. There is no advanced programming requirements: the only coding that
has to be done is modification of current scripts. Currently, the only game mechanic that remains
untested is creating a checkpoint spawn system.
The main challenges are more directed towards time management and organization then
technical ability. Our 3D artists have a heavy, but reasonable amount of modeling work ahead of them.
Equally, our level will be very trigger and Kismet heavy, which means that our level design team will
have to be very organized . However, if we keep our current pace then these challenges will be met
with success.