Designer Dissection: Gallery

(RazielWarmonic) #1

In this Designer Dissection, Level Designer AK leads us through the design decisions behind Dirty Bomb’s next Execution map. Check out the Prototype Showcase post for the full rundown of the event, and try Gallery out for yourself in the Server Browser and in Private Matches until the 2nd of January.

Goals of the Map

Travel times
Good pacing is an extremely important element as it keeps the game exciting and engaging. Nailing the travel times in Gallery was the first and most important stage of the block-out. Controlling the pacing ensures the map is exciting and dramatic. It is essential to ensure the time to the first encounter or objective is not long enough for players to become frustrated or bored.

Intuitive Routes
Primary and secondary (bypass) routes flow well from one area to the next. They are clear and easily readable. Restricting the player’s choice to 2 routes at any branch creates simplicity within the flow from one area to the next. This simplicity of fewer routes means higher chances of an early encounter with the enemy.

Additional secondary/flanking routes have been incorporated into the map. If a primary route is locked down, a flanking route will give access. Many of Gallery’s bypass routes utilize wall hops or long jumps which have been used in interesting ways for players to discover, adding excitement to the flow of the map whilst navigating into strategic positions.

Player guidance is really important and Pylon signs have been placed throughout the map to direct players. Creating a visual language is the next step to aid with player guidance when art is added.

Balanced Combat Areas
Combat areas have been designed to be balanced for both Jackal and CDA. The use of trick jumps can get players out of sticky situations or into a better defensive or offensive positions. However, there is always a risk to reward. To gain a better position the player may have to reveal their location briefly to reach the vantage point, or the vantage point may have strong offensive elements but no cover from its flank.

Cater to all Merc styles
It’s true that some Mercs are less useful in certain maps than others. For example, Shotgun Mercs such as Aura and Proxy who rely upon CQC have fewer opportunities in Overground compared to Market where they are far more appealing. The architectural theme of Gallery lends itself well to long, medium and short range Mercs with wide open areas, tight corridor sections and multi-story verticality. Gallery has utilized this architectural theme to its fullest capabilities and maximised on combat varieties.

Utilise all Merc-hanics™
Dirty Bomb’s core gameplay mechanics are what sets it apart from other first person shooters. Gallery will create opportunities for players to use all gameplay mechanics –

  • Deployables – The architectural layout of the map has many corners and sets of stairs with surprise areas for the deployment of mines and turrets. Once art is in place, fallen leaves will decorate the surroundings to give the impression of autumn and create prime areas to obscure mine placement.
  • Air Support – Air support will be viable over the outside areas of the map, and some buildings are destroyed to further create opportunities.
  • Trick Jumps – Trick jumps are integral to the game and have been strategically positioned around the map to gain access to bypass routes and vantage points. Trick jumps are intuitive and fun to discover and pull off, and (most of them) are clearly marked with footprint decals.

Have you played Gallery? Where does it succeed and how could it be improved? Let us know in the comments below!

(CCP115) #2

Another great insight post, but I will say Gallery looks incredibly tiny compared to all the other maps…

also merc-chanics.

(Terminal_6) #3

Played a few games on Gallery, here’s my piece:

DISCLAIMER: I might have a slight bias because of how terrible I was playing while checking out Gallery (I did better later on). And, as with most people, it was easy to get lost on a new map that hasn’t yet received its textures. Currently, it feels like a modern art museum.

So, I’ll go down the list. The map is highly compartmentalized, due to high walls and verticality. As a result, it manages to, in ways, feel perhaps larger than the other Exec. maps. While this isn’t exactly a bad thing, it means you’ll be craning your virtual neck a bit more because of how many places have access directly above, and generally keeping your head on a swivel because of how much easier it is for the enemy to maneuver out of your sight.

Main gripe:
Feels too wide. The distance from A to spawn and B to spawn seem fine, but the distance between the two points seems stretched. As a result, new or otherwise inexperienced players will have a hard time finding the action if they chose the wrong route in the beginning. The urban (very urban) nature of the map doesn’t always show the fastest routes very well.
Eventually, I got better at hoofing it between points, but my team was often splintered and spoon-fed to the enemy one by one.

Smaller concerns:
Skyhammer has a very easy time “hiding” his airstrikes. If the marker is tossed on one side of a wall, the enemy will have a harder time identifying the trajectory. Yes, this happens on all maps, but one airstrike can cover a lot of different parts of the map due to the compartmentalized design.

Flanking routes are difficult. Veteran players will all eventually know the map like the back of their hand, but at first glance, it can be very hard to find a way to a Vassili on the higher levels, for instance. From some places, such as pylon B, it can require a bit of observation to find a route up to the overlooking balcony.

In Regards To…
Corners. And stairs. Yeah, that’s a lot of corners and stairs. Honestly, I’m alright with that. Playing as Sawbonez, I had a lot of opportunities to be squirrely and outmaneuver a larger opposing force.

Trick jumps. Without textures, the walls accentuate those dirty footprints rather nicely. I saw a lot of them, but I couldn’t tell exactly where they went, so I wasn’t compelled to try them. Most of the map seems accessible without them, though an adept trick jumping ninja could pull off some crazy big-time plays.

The general feel. I feel like I’ve been turned loose into a modern art museum/jungle gym. With guns. That’s probably just the texturelessness, which, when added, will improve navigational flow, which is probably my biggest issue with the map.

That’s all for now.

(3rsh) #4

from my experience everyone dies instantly if everyone goes to the middle alley. throwing everyone in the front lines, usually ending up with half of the team dead on either side, since everyone just spams their explosives at each other. This map doesn’t provide the cover you have in Overground (Market lacks that a lot). I understand the new idea that is implemented, however I would like if you added some variation to this map for versatility for players, which is why a lot of people don’t like playing execution.

(MoopCat) #5

I was playing on Gallery today and Dirty Bomb “stopped responding” which then had to close down. This has never happened before and i’m not sure why just thought i would let you guys know this has happened.

I have only had a chance to play this map about 6-8 times its an ok map a little small i kinda enjoyed it at first but im not so sure i like it with every merc i have and i dont want to only have the choice to use 1 or two every time i play this map. all in all can’t wait to see the finished product!

(enigmaplatypus) #6

why I think that gallery is a great map…

1.) it gives both attackers and defenders a fair shot at winning. (map is unbiased)
2.) it has many side routes that give enough options to flank the enemy team.
3.) both pylons are defend-able and attack-able.
4.) the pacing is good and the choke points are few and can be easily avoided.

i ultimately think that gallery needs little if any fixing :slight_smile:

great map, love it keep up the good work :smile:

(The_Enema_Bandit) #7

I like the Gallery. Now let’s see how the paintings gonna look like! :slight_smile:

(streetwiseSailboat) #8

I actually like Gallery compared to the other execution maps. I felt the travel time was fine, there was a good sense of verticality and it was fun as both attackers and defenders.

(Blackclaw) #9

So I played a couple of matches and I do have to agree with terminal 6 because the routes between A and B are weirdly hard to find and follow and have often found myself back where I started but after a few matches I have begun to understand the map better and master the " intuitive routes ". The only thing I can think of that is negative is that as the attackers run out of spawn and up the stairs and into the open room with crates and they go forward and up the stairs again into the small passage way that leads out, if an airstrike is called in our a laser you may still kiss your arse goodbye because there’s nothing you can but hope you some how miraculously survive. But what I do like about this map is that it is almost the opposite of dockyard because gallery is small and compact and dockyard is long and spacious. This map gallery is looking to be promising, keep it up. :wink:

(phoenixgamer) #10

Don’t you think you should close this post?