Josh the Whale | Level Design and Creation

Josh the Whale | Level Design and Creation

Josh the Whale is moving along nicely.  Bryce is figuring out the new engine and we have already put together some proof of concept work.  While he’s figuring out how to get this all put together in an application, I am trudging forward, getting other areas of the game designed and finished.

This is a time lapse video of the cave entrance where a few pages if the book will take place.  This video is especially long because all the interface  movement would be too distracting if I compressed it down to 4 minutes.  So, if you don’t want to spend 20 minutes watching this video, watch for about 1 minute and then skip ahead 5 minutes, this will give you a good feel for the whole process.

As you can see, the difference between the concept art and the finished result is dramatic. And I predict that there will be more changes in the future, as we test on different platforms.  This is partly because of my lack of planning, but also because plans change as you continue to consider your market and what ideas you wish to express visually within the story.

And there are also limits with polygon count amount other things.  I try to avoid thinking that way when doing this kind of work, because even with restrictions you can usually get what you want out of it, if not stubble upon a few good things you wouldn’t have seen without the restrictions.

The processes that I go through to hash out these designs are simple:


Brainstorm and Sketches (What colors, what environments, visual style)

Concept art  (Hardest part, because you are trying to develop a visual style and language that best fits the idea)

3D’ize  the Ideas (Modeling, Texturing, Rigging, Animating, and other asset creation)

Troubleshooting (testing to make sure that the colors are sending the right visually messages, the main character sticks out enough, etc.  Often the longest part of the job)


It’s allot of work, and can be very daunting when you first approach it.  But as the artwork comes, the assets get animated, and those assets are placed into an interactive state, it can be very exciting and encouraging.

I will continue posting about this app, since it looks like we are still a good month away from a final product.  But I do have other things lined up.

I am currently putting together a personal project video series, that should carry on for a few months.  I got a few ideas in mind on things I might be able to contribute from my limited experience.  And placing some of that experience into a fun video series will help keep me motivated in my work, and hopefully motivate some of you as well.