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  • Level Design Analysis: Oxenfurt In The Witcher 3

    [09.15.20]
    - Eduardo Tassi

  • Composition & Design

    I find composition to be one of the greatest strength of this level, leading lines and framing are used to gently guide the player through the level. Additionally, the placement of landmarks perfectly blends in with the environment, they all fit the vertical style of the city making them recognizable even from long distances to perfectly capture the player's attention and give them a point of reference within the environment.

    The big tower located in the main square near the Auction House is a landmark always visible not only from the inside of the city, but even from the outside. Landmarks in Oxenfurt are usually recognizable for their vertical structure, providing a feeling of scale and contrast that makes the level feel dramatic and big.

    The same can be said about the two main gates to enter the city, you can build up anticipation by forcing the player to cross narrow and enclosed entrances, and then release that suspense by revealing a large and diverse space.

    Points of interest are equally distinguishable, the buildings and spaces related to main narrative quests are usually more recognizable than others. Secondary points of interest are still very easy to navigate thanks to some diegetic elements placed in the environment, like some building's signposts that immediately capture the player's attention.

    Conclusions

    Re-creating Oxenfurt inside UE4 was a fascinating challenge that allowed me to hone my practical skills as well as my analytical thinking as a level designer. This project took me over two months of work aside from my day job, I honestly believe that so much more could have been done looking at how much content there is inside this level, still, I'm very proud of the end result. 

    I hope you enjoyed the reading! Let me know if you have any feedback, feel free to contact me on Twitter: @tassi_eduardo

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