Game Development Reference
Game Levels in SketchUp
3D games come in many varieies. First of all, they vary in the way they display the game
world, either as a top-down view (a bit like a board game), or from the side similar to a
plaform game, or from eye-level.
Then there's how they control the way you follow your game character. Do you simply see
through the eyes of your character and see what they see? Or, is your character in front of
you, and your point of view remains behind them? Maybe the scene in front of you is staic
and only changes screen by screen. Maybe you are looking down like a god and the scene
only scrolls to the North, South, East or West when your character gets near the edge.
Whichever diferent game coniguraions you could choose, the same basic element can be
found in every one of them--The Level. A level is a secion or a stage in the game. When you
design your game, you break it up into levels, because this will keep you from having to think
of the whole game at once. For example, you may be creaing an adventure game taking
part throughout the coninent of South America. You may break your game up into levels
such as The Airport, The Hotel, The Mayan Village, The Jungle, and so on. Each of these may
sill be too big, so you may choose to divide them up further into sub-levels, which are more
focused on a paricular goal within the main level. Within the airport level, you may have ive
sub-levels based on progressing through parts of the airport unil you reach the plane, or
from the plane to the taxi.
A level is a discrete area within your game world. In games such as the adventure game I
have described, the levels may be quite large and unwieldy, in others, such as those with
huge maps to explore, they become just too big to handle. For this reason when you design
your games, you will almost always break up the levels into further chunks. The best way
of thinking about this is to take the analogy of a chess board. The chess board is the game
world, which has just one level, but that level is broken up into squares. Each square has a
reference, A4 or F1, so that we all know where it is. The chess pieces are the players or non-
player characters that move around in that level. Now, in your game you can break up your
levels into squares, too. Each square will be an element of the game level. When you create
many squares, your game level will be complete.