A few weeks ago, I took a design test for a Jr. Level Design job at Naughty Dog. The test asked me to create two levels. The first level was supposed to be 3-5 minutes of cooperative combat, while the second level was supposed to consist of 6-8 minutes of combat mixed with a cooperative objective.
I had never designed and documented a level in this kind of detail before, so I wasn’t entirely satisfied with my final draft. I ended up designing the first level using Photoshop and creating a top-down map, and the second level using Maya – which I haven’t touched in 4 years. And on top of these challenges, I only had 4 hours to do it in. Download the document here.
The idea for my first level consisted of a multi-tiered combat map in the treetops. The idea behind this level was allow the player to pick their style of attack. The player could either watch the initial guards movement in the treetops and plan a stealth mode of attack, or go in guns blazing and have to face more enemies. The top-down map is below.
The concept for my second map was a mixture of close-quarters and higher-ground combat with a piece of movable cover to force the player to use their surroundings in a tactical manner. The end of the level consisted of a firefight with the only piece of cover being the movable treasure chest that the players must pick up halfway through the level. A single player could drag the treasure chest with both hands while the second player covered him, or both players could grab the treasure chest and have one hand free to shoot their pistol. My Maya block mesh is below.