3am the night before our latest UDK level was due, half the class was still in the classroom. Most would stay overnight, camping out at school from 9am Monday through midnight the next night. Five weeks may sound like a long time to complete a 5-10 minute single player experience, but when you have to create everything from the concept and layout to mechanics and scripting from scratch, even ten weeks sounds like a tight squeeze.
My Factory Frenzy level has certainly come a long way, from the original puzzle idea when I was first learning kismet, to the tentative cell diagram, and finally, to the finished level, complete with cinematics, sound effects, enemies, and a boss puzzle.
You start the level by taking a helicopter ride from an island to a nearby factory. You’re prompted to shoot the colored panels to get through the factory. You soon encounter enemies, lit up with red lights. As you shoot them, you neutralize them, turning them green.
Eventually, you make your way to the main assembly line area, where you start in on the first puzzle. You must stand on the moving platforms of the conveyor belts to shoot the panels of the same color, all while dodging enemy fire. Be careful though – the enemies in this area don’t stay permanently neutralized; after a certain period, their green lights blink, and then they reactivate and turn red again.
After shooting all the colored panels in the required sequence, you progress to the boss puzzle, a Simon Says game of sorts. You must remember the codes you’re given in order to shoot the correct panels. Meanwhile, an evil boss mechanical arm swings down every so often to thwart you. After entering all the codes, you defeat the boss and encounter an army of green bots, neutralized due to your efforts and ready to serve you. But wait…as the camera pans, the green lights start blinking…and the whole army turns RED.
Here are some before and after screenshots of the work I’ve done on Factory Frenzy within the past five weeks:
Main Assembly Line Area, Bottom Floor
Stages of Boss Puzzle
Phase 1 Phase 2
Phase 3 Victory
Ending Cinematic Yay! …but wait…
Over the past five weeks, I spent well over a hundred hours on Factory Frenzy, had lots of glitches, learned a ton of scripting, and had more fun than I could have imagined.
Now, on to the next level!