Spaceflight

The sky is not the limit.

Fly through the sky and onwards into space. Explore vast distances in style.

Showcasing of the prototype. Warp speed flight begins at 04:20
Team size - 2
Engine - Unreal Engine 4
Time - 2 weeks
Genre - Third person space flight prototype
Period - November 2020
Design target  - To prototype and demonstrate a space flight and ground to space  transition system.
Main contributions -  Level design,  planetary objects,  the ground to space transition system, and atmospheric effects.
Sub contributions - General blueprinting and gameplay design
This is a practice level I designed where you fly through hoops to progress onto a path towards space. The level style I chose has this airy feeling to it that I felt instilled a sense of flying and encouraged the player to try out different maneuvers.
My Work
Design

Making the planetary objects look right when reflecting the sunlight and having the right amount of occlusion in the darker areas required a lot of tweaking.

I designed the ground level, flying obstacles, flight path, ground to space transition, planetary objects, and space level, basically anything that isn't the character movement and the flying system itself, except for warp speed travel.

Early version of the level showing parts of the planet to space transition system.

Technical
Beyond general blueprinting assistance, most of my technical work was devoted to planetary object scaling, distances, light effects from cities on the dark side of planets,  space level atmospheric visual effects for planetary objects that interact with sunlight,  clouds, gravitational pull, as well as tweaking the values of everything regarding atmospheric occlusion and materials and textures, as well as working together with my group partner on the warp speed travelling.
Entering warp speed travel.

Things get a bit wonky when you travel too great a distance from the starting point in unreal. This wasn't an issue since I kept the planetary objects within reasonable distance. However, If I were to do it again,  I would divide the space level into sections that could be loaded seamlessly instead of keeping the level as large as I made it.

reflection
I had been wanting to make a space flight prototype for quite some time. So when the course instructions were to make a system of some kind, I immediately suggested it to my group member who agreed that it was something that he himself hadn't had much experience in so he felt that it was a worthwhile thing to learn. Afterwards I felt like this was some of the most fun I've had making anything, and I definitely want to do more in regards to working on space flight and exploration games, using some of the many lessons this work taught me. I am still working on the prototype on my spare time, trying out new ways to tweak and improve it.

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