Author Topic: To you, what is bad level design?  (Read 10166 times)

Arthur

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To you, what is bad level design?
« on: June 15, 2012, 01:32:59 pm »
This topic is made for the people who want to begin making levels with the editor. It will tell them what they souldn't do in their own levels. If you find design flaws I didn't mention, please answer! ;)
So, here are the things I never like to see in a level:
  • Inegal difficulty. If your level isn't meant to be very hard, please don't put very hard things in! These include two tiles gaps with spikes on borders, timing puzzles with an extremely low margin of error, Veni-Vidi-Vici-likes... BUT you can make sub-levels of different difficulty: the best exemple is Dimension 333333: the introduction level is almost trivial, the green zone is as hard as the main game, the purple zone isn't easy, the red zone begins to be quite hard, the blue zone is very hard... And I ragequit a lot on the final zone.
  • Desynchronising rooms. I often see rooms where if you wait 30 seconds, the enemy/platform position makes you have to quit the room to be able to pass it. Believe me, I always hate to see these.
  • Leaving obvious glitches in your level. The most frequent exemple is one-way warp-lines: when you try to turn back, BOOM, Viridian is stuck in a wall or in outer space. :vitellary: There are also people who forget to remove important script boxes, which were only meant to be accessed by scripts...
  • Bad script knowledge. Terminals aren't meant to have Viridians's voice, are they? :D If you want to use script, try PJBottomz's scripting tutorial level: It doesn't talk about 2.1 features because it's quite old, but you'll have a good knowledge of everything you'll need for a while.
  • Making things you're the only one to know about: this one is probably the most frequent of these all. The level I played that exploited the most that was CCCCCCCCCC Retold: you could very often walk into a spike or fall off a platorm upon entering a room, especially in the final level. An other exemple is hiding spikes in disappearing platforms or behind the room name: when you make your level, you always know where these are, but players can't try to remember it.
I hope it helps! Thanks for reading  :viridian:
« Last Edit: June 16, 2012, 10:13:53 am by Arthur »

FIQ

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2012, 01:47:30 pm »
This is a very nice topic (but I guess it would suit VVVVVV Levels better).

Apart from what you already told, I think single tiles (normally, not within Direct Mode in which it can be remedied a bit) looks pretty bad. Yes, I'm looking at you, A New Dimension.. even if the level was good in general. :)

Glaring bugs, insanely hard levels that doesn't feel rewarding, just frustrating, floating spikes (usually), possibilities to get Viridian stuck in a wall, are all examples of bad level design IMO.

SirBryghtside

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2012, 07:06:01 pm »
The thing I loved the most about VVVVVV itself was how many checkpoints were put on the maps. I think the main thing to remember when making a level, then, is to put in checkpoints after every single 'challenge'. If there's a non-Veni Vidi Vici room without a checkpoint, throw one in.

Arthur

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2012, 10:06:18 am »
I totally agree with you two, but the single tiles aren't bad level design, even if these are VERY annoying...
I forgot to tell about the things only the level's maker should know. I'm adding them to the first post right now!

blue626

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2012, 07:15:55 pm »
Perhaps exploiting glitches on purpose is bad level design too, because the level won't work if the glitches are fixed, and I think that doing so is unfair.

There are also people who forget to remove important script boxes, which were only meant to be accessed by scripts...[/li][/list]

You mean you can create script boxes/terminals and then erase them, not erasing the script so that it can be accessed by other scripts?
Also, can you create two script boxes/terminals with the same script?

I totally agree with you two, but the single tiles aren't bad level design, even if these are VERY annoying...

Single tiles or one tile wide/tall walls look weird. You should avoid doing these unless they become invisible and you do this on purpose.

FIQ

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2012, 08:01:23 pm »
Also, can you create two script boxes/terminals with the same script?
You can! Just create two script boxes/terminals and point them at the same script name and it will be re-used.

Pyrite

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2012, 02:18:59 am »
You mean you can create script boxes/terminals and then erase them, not erasing the script so that it can be accessed by other scripts?
Yes, you can. I did it accidentally, it's still there.

Hilbert

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2012, 03:02:40 pm »
Bad internal scripting. That ticks me off. :violet:

blue626

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2012, 03:08:00 pm »
Bad internal scripting. That ticks me off. :violet:

What do you mean by that? Can you give me an example?
Also, you knew that the last reply was 2 months ago, didn't you?

Dav999

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2012, 03:11:10 pm »
Bad internal scripting. That ticks me off. :violet:

Off topic: I see what you did there, you viewed Who's Online and saw I was reading this topic, then you started reading it too :viridian:
On topic: I don't know how many incredibly hard levels I've seen, and single-width walls, floating things, and lack of checkpoints (combines with hard levels), and WALL GLITCHES. You know, you're just walking into another room, you get stuck in a wall and end up in outer space, followed by another wall glitch which makes the screen flash. And you can start the whole level over again! :violet:

Warning - while you were typing a new reply has been posted. You may wish to review your post. \care

Dav999

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2012, 05:44:21 pm »
Bad internal scripting. That ticks me off. :violet:

Do you mean... People who use internal scripting but have no experience so it looks bad, or internal scripting in general?

Hilbert

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2012, 11:37:19 pm »
stuff like boxes with customposition(center) and stuff in it when you test your level or crashes your game :violet:

Dav999

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #12 on: August 29, 2012, 05:22:36 am »
stuff like boxes with customposition(center) and stuff in it when you test your level or crashes your game :violet:

So you didn't see that in other levels? A good habit is pressing Shift-S after every change, or at least before every test. I sometimes forget it, though.

blue626

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2012, 01:17:04 pm »
stuff like boxes with customposition(center) and stuff in it when you test your level or crashes your game :violet:
I think that only happens if creator doesn't test his/her level.

I recommend testing parts of the levels often. That includes the scripts and the challenges (so it's better to not activate invincibility or slowdown mode). If you (the level creator) aren't sure if the scripting works well(when using internal scripting, for example), then save before very scripting test. If you played PJBottomz' tutorial level and read the "Scripting commands index and tips" thread (and understood both) and you aren't using internal scripting in your level, then it should work well. After you completed your level, play all of it, by selecting it from the levels menu (and not test it from the editor).
If you don't do what I recommended above, then your level might have glitches that make the level impossible to complete (the glitch that Roskilla mentioned is an example). This should be added to the list.

Bearboy

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Re: To you, what is bad level design?
« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2012, 03:10:12 pm »