Every serious game developer knows that world building is an integral part of the process that creates a truly immersive experience. There are a variety of techniques that can be used to achieve this: from presenting the backstory of your player with a wall of text, to clever level design tricks known as environmental storytelling. The latter is often preferred. Unravelling the lore of your world from a few hints scattered across the levels is, de-facto, a game within the game. And while most players might just ignore them, others could find great pleasure in resolving this meta-puzzle.
Games like Dark Souls are notorious for their rich—and somewhat obscure—lore, which can be pieced together through the strong environmental storytelling and the various hints hidden in the item descriptions. Other games go even deeper than that, and create entire new languages for their fictional civilisations.
This is not something so uncommon, and many other media before games have long relied on fictional languages to create a much deeper sense of immersion. The entire world of The Lord of the Rings was built around a series of languages that J. R. R. Tolkien himself created before writing the books.
🇷🇺 A Russian version of this article is available here.
This tutorial shows how to download videos from YouTube and to process their frames with Python; I have used this technique to create game barcode, an image created by sorting the colours in each frame of a particular video. You can see some of most intriguing here:
When a game is on TIGsource, there’s a good heuristic for its future success: the number of pages its devlog has. The original post about FEZ, for example, counted 127 pages. Rain World, on the other hand, is getting dangerously close to 200. When a game is able to generate so much discussion, is hard to imagine anything but success in its future. Set in a post-apocalyptic future, Rain World asks you to accomplish a simple task: to survive. The eerie world is surrounded by glowing lizards and skeleton vultures. The developers or Rain World have been open about the different techniques they’re using in the game, including the secrets behind the super smooth movements of the main protagonists: the slugcats. Yes slugcats: agile creatures with bodies as flexible as slugs, simulated with real physics and rendered as meshes. A very early demo of the game has been made available to the backers who helped Rain World being funded on Kickstarter.