One challenge of BioBeasts is adding variety to what is essentially an "X" layout. BioBeasts takes place inside a research facility as your character breaks from its containment cell. Throughout the game, you will journey through the facility to your eventual sweet, sweet escape to freedom.
The first screen is pretty basic. We wanted the background to convey that sci-fi atmosphere without overwhelming the action. BioBeasts is a fast-paced game so the background could not be distracting.
That said, we felt the initial design for the starting area was very plain. Thus, we decided to add more containment cells, more color, and more visual interest. Backgrounds shouldn't overwhelm the action, but that doesn't mean they should fade into obscurity.
To keep the environments from becoming repetitive Charfade experimented with different color schemes to define each area. By altering the color schemes, she was able to create completely unique environments while maintaining the same basic layout.
As players fight their ways through the facility, they will pass through a containment facility, an armory, an infested quarantine zone, and other diverse settings.
Some environments will be used as an obstacle the player must overcome. We can place scaffolding, wires, and other foreground elements to hide enemies until the last moment, forcing players to react more quickly than normal. Animated elements will give the environments depth and life beyond a static piece of art.
These are just some methods we're using to make BioBeasts as lively and visually appealing as possible. An environment should not simply be a piece of static art, but should convey a sense of place and progression, augmenting the action rather than overwhelming it.
We will continue to play with color options and interactivity in the various battle environments to make the world of BioBeasts a living and breathing world; a world of terrors that you'll want to escape, but have a blast discovering.
What other regions would you like to see explored in BioBeasts?