Team Size: 4
Role: Level Designer
A fun accessible puzzle game that requires you to think before you act!
Honey was one of the earlier commercial projects I worked on. Since I was still fresh at the company I was purely in charge of creating levels. The game itself was an interesting puzzle concept which made the creation of the levels a really interesting and fun job to do. The harder parts were making sure the puzzles wouldn't break but still make sure the player had enough creative freedom to come up with an unique solution. Working on Honey taught me a lot about trying to cater to an audience.
I mostly worked on the level design in Honey. It was my first time working within a HTML-5 environment. This meant I still had to learn the code and the way levels were implemented. To make this easier for myself I used paper prototyping. I made the full level with bits and pieces of paper to create an easy overview. Then I could just look up the code for every block and implement them into the code.
Once the level was actually implemented I would play it several times and iterate on it further. The paper prototype was mostly to create a solid idea for a level that I would use as a starting point and through playing the level I would finalize it.
On the left you can see the paper prototype on top and the actual level in the bottom. This is one of the levels that stayed really close to the original design, mostly because it was an introduction level for the purple blocks.(Purple blocks can not move and only rotate.) The lower left corner of the level was a little to easy because you didn't have to use the full grid to complete the level with 3 stars. This is the main reason that the 3rd star was moved. Since the player had to learn the purple block mechanic I wanted her to use as much of the grid as possible.
As said above most of the work I did on this project was level design. This is why further down the page I placed some more paper prototype and actual levels side by side so you can see some of the iteration.
Another level that had little iteration, the original design worked well enough for the position of the level. It is one of the earlier levels that asks the player to use both movable and rotate only blocks together. It also add unmovable blocks in the mix to make sure the player is getting used to mixing the mechanics and solving puzzles with them.
This one needed a little more iteration than the others. When playing the level it felt a little easy for its position in the game, also the stars where to easy to gather. To solve this I placed some extra blocks at the top goals to
" trick" the player into thinking the solution is done differently than it actually is. I also moved the stars around to make more use of the complete grid.
This is one of the harder levels to design since it uses the self moving blocks. You can see that several iterations have been done within the engine to make the level more playable. I think this was also the limit of paper prototyping the levels. I could get a vague idea of what I wanted to build with the self moving blocks but I had to make sure the game wouldn't break. So even though the basic idea could be made within the paper prototype it still needed extensive testing within the engine.
Copyright 2016 Jan van Lamoen