I moved to Seattle from Chicago to work on Guild Wars 2 as a level designer. I also worked on content for the 4th and 5th year anniversary updates for Guild Wars.
For the first couple of months, I ramped up on the MapEdit tool that was used to build the maps in Guild Wars 2. Primarily, my job was pure map and geometry creation. For a large portion of the project, I was one of only two level designers on the entire project. I used a height map generator to create terrain and a library of props to populate the maps. I also textured and did the first lighting pass on my maps. Essentially, my job was to prep the maps I worked on as much as possible before handing them off to environment art.
I laid out and designed the Zaishen Menagerie for the 4th year anniversary update for Guild Wars. On Guild Wars 2, I worked on the following maps in the game:
- Dungeon – Sorrow’s Embrace
- Dungeon – Crucible of Eternity
- Dungeon – Arah (the final version was completed by environment artists)
- City – Rata Sum (the final version was completed by environment artists)
- All of the Completive PvP maps in the game, including the Hub map. We prototyped numerous game types for a long while before settling on the style of game play that went into the game. I made upwards of two dozen different arena style maps during this time.
- The World vs. World maps. While doing this, I created several different keep layouts to see what worked and what didn’t in WvW. Last, I also did a little bit of scripting to populate the keeps with NPC guards.
I also was responsible for updating the meta-data controlling where the maps existed in the world (positioning, connection points between maps, etc). I was responsible for creating the sectors for about half of the entire game (PvE and PvP alike). While doing this, I also created points of interest and res shrine locations. Whenever one of the PvE content designers needed a map change for their areas, I was the one they came to for those changes. Last, I was also responsible for updating and maintaining the wiki in regards to map creation.
Videos and Links:
Zaishen Menagerie – 4th year anniversary update for Guild War 1
Sorrow’s Embrace – Dungeon
Crucible of Eternity – Dungeon
Battle of Kyhlo – PvP map