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The Number One Educational Resource for the Game Industry

Session Name: Middle-earth is Burning - Fire as a Gameplay Element in BfME2
Speaker(s): Martin Hoffesommer
Company Name(s): Electronic Arts Los Angeles
Track / Format: Programming

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Overview: Innovating within large codebases that have been around for multiple product cycles can be a major challenge. Using BATTLE FOR MIDDLE EARTH 2 the challenges and solutions on how to add fire as an actual gameplay element will be discussed. Beginning from the initial mandate of "We want more fire" design ideas and prototypes are presented. A brief discussion of why a grid based approach was chosen over other potential solutions is followed by code snippets from an early implementation within a proof-of-concept prototype that also serves to demonstrate on how to visualize new design ideas to non-technical staff quickly. This is followed by a discussion of how to visualize the fire grid, gameplay implications and design restrictions. Finally a postmortem style presentation of the results are shown in-game.

GDC 2006

Martin Hoffesommer

Electronic Arts Los Angeles

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