DREAMWORKS DREAMPLACE: SLEIGH FLIGHT SCHOOL

  • Role: System / Level / UX Design

  • Genre: 3-Lane Finite Runner

  • Engine: Unity

  • Developer: Bully! Entertainment

  • Client: DreamWorks

  • Total Dev Time: 2015; 3 months

  • Platform: iOS / Android

Intended as a small part of the DreamWorks DreamPlace experience around Christmas time in shopping malls, children could play this game while waiting in line to see Santa. Players fly Santa's sleigh through 3 different levels; jumping, diving, and switching between 3 different lanes to avoid obstacles in this infinite runner style action game. 

TASKS / RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Authoring GDDs, priority lists, and asset lists.

  • Creating client-facing presentations and project updates.

  • Wireframes for all menus and UI elements.

  • Writing copy for all menus and UI elements.

  • Planning out and implementing overall level and environment design at a macro and micro scale.

  • Design of level obstacles.

  • Adaptation, tweaking, and fine tuning of the design of mechanics proposed by client. 

  • Design of FTUE.

DESIGN PROCESS

The process first began with outlining the overall emotional intensity curve we wanted for each level and identifying what our landmarks and environments would be at each stage of that curve. From there I'd make sketches of those landmarks and areas and work with the art team to finalize the general idea of what we wanted to make. Some examples of this down below:

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From there I would then use graph paper to sketch out the general layout of the level itself to hand off to the art team to put it together. Usually a white box would be the first step however with the very short turn around of the project and with the fact that many of the tools and mechanics weren't created yet but the level needed to begin work this was the best route forward for empowering the art team quickly and effectively. Art assets were still created individually so things would be moved around if the track itself needed to be moved. 

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Once the tools to place obstacles had been created and I knew what I was working with I then used Google Sheets to outline the obstacle placements along the track using the system that the developers outlined for me. This system made it very quick and easy for anyone else on the team to implement the design to exact specifications while also making it easy to adjust the document if needed with little additional edits.

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