Hi! I am a huge fan of classic cRPG games like Dungeon Crawler, in particular the Eye of The Beholder and Lands of Lore series.. I remember when I was a kid I would plunge into endless dungeons and chop monsters for days. Unfortunately, all of these games had a technological (and time) limitation where multiple dungeon levels were made up of the same elements. This solution, of course, had a positive aspect as it created a claustrophobic feeling of being in these dungeons, but on the other hand, many players complained of boredom and monotony.
A very important technological step in this type of games was brought by the title of Legends of Grimrock, in which the authors of the game used interesting 3D graphics, considering the capabilities of the computers at the time. The technological leap also made it possible to present the open air space in a more interesting way. The choice of Unreal Engine 4 was obvious to me. Unlike Unity 3d, I was able to achieve a satisfactory visual quality of the game much faster. The very cool flow of the editor made me work on the prototype of the game even more eagerly.
The first prototype of the gameBased on an excellent template I purchased from Unreal Marketplace, I started experimenting with the dungeon layout. Initially, following the aforementioned titles, I started building a grid system of cubic blocks.This type of solution was fine, but I quickly concluded that the maze would be made of repetitive blocks (just like the original games of this type) and it might turn out to be too boring.I started looking for a different solution – I moved the blocks endlessly, sometimes building thinner walls, but it was still not what I was looking for.
Bingo!While exploring the Unreal Marketplace store, I came across one interesting bundle of assets called Lordenfel. While playing with 3d models, I accidentally came across the so-called vertex painting. In this case, painting was used to change the texture of the stone walls and the appearance of moss (2 separate channels R, G)
Suddenly it dawned on me! A thought started to form in my head to make a dungeon crawler game less repetitive than the classic 90s games. Following the blow, I began to experiment with the form of the walls – so that they were not template-like. I created various layouts on the grid, I checked how the team was moving through such stages.
Finally it worked! I found the direction I wanted to go! My goal was to create a dungeon crawler game with more polished and unique rooms. I think that was a great idea – well, there’s just one thing.. Creating stages this way takes a lot more time than using grid-based editors. Well, it's a give and take. I hope this idea works out :)