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S A C R A L

"Once home to many this sacral complex now is but vast and forgotten | 4-8 players"

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Sacral is another project I've completed where I designed the art for a blockout by purely fat.
 
As you can most likely tell by the pictures, Sacral is heavily inspired by Dark Souls. I made the teleporters look like the famous fog gates through which the players are able to traverse the map more quickly.
The tone of the map is kind of greyed out, as if something great once happened here, but now it is all forgotten through time. The sun provides hope with its rays over the surrounding mountains and trees, the misty fog acts as a counterpart and darkens the hope.
 
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I really like the colour tone of this level. Another designer liked it so much that he even copied it for his map; that, to me, is the biggest compliment someone could give. I could imagine making more designs with these greyed out and cold, yet somewhat earthy colours.

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I am mostly satisfied with the art being an openly lightened one and therefore having less options budget-wise. The lighting serves its purpose and the continuity to me is very believable.

Unfortunately, I was not able to erase a framerate problem when looking into the map from the snipe spawn... I had to remove some cool aesthetical stuff for it to be somewhat bearable. At least, it's only limited to one spot (5x5x5 meters).

The architecture is not as brilliant as I would like it to be. That is why some structures like the bridge arches and small door frames are not round. Something, I'd hope for Halo 6 to give us way more efficient options...

 

However, I am pretty proud of the big tower with a small playable spiral staircase within:
 
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Now from the visuals onto the core design of the map, a few words from purely fat:
 
Spoiler

 

So Sacral was a design during a period, back in 2017, where my process and goals were a little weird.

-The main process was the deconstruction and redistribution of campaign levels from different games.
-The other was to create an exploratory feel, where a meta would take a while to fully establish based on the average person's ability to learn a map from anecdotal evidence. This also has to maintain the feel from what was before my main process.
-The map is largely based on players choosing paths wisely to promote good positioning to run spawns while having enough depth to create unpredictable spawning forcing players to learn to take advantage of the depth of the map to force a possibly easier spawn run. By doing this you can create a situation where dying is advantageous as a reset.
-The structural inspiration is from Dark Souls 2 and base on the areas surrounding the shaded woods.

 


Thoughts about Dark Souls 2 (Fashion Souls):

The meta was weird, because of a very large but redundant sandbox, that became not very redundant through powerstance and the fact that it was just aesthetic choice at a certain point based on the idea that a large amount of the redundancies were merely fashion. This combined with a very arena esque world design created a lot of different encounters through the fact that the areas of the game are very distinct from each other, because it is the least interwoven Souls game. (You ****ing go up in a elevator in a windmill to the Iron Keep that is a Castle Fortress in a volcano - game's a little silly).

So I designed it and had a general atmosphere in mind.
Buddy took the map and I gave him no time frame, because I have a mindset that even if it isn't finished I still gained from the experience of designing it.

So about a year and a half later Buddy wants to work on it and starts working on it. I make some design changes like opening a rock wall and getting rid of an ugly ass terrain ramp and replacing it with a tower. Buddy and I compromised on a few stair cases, small tower, and a roof for forging/artistic/budget reasons.

I went double speed boost, rockets, sniper, stack-able light rifles and some grenades. Because DEPTH!

 

 

 
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And with that, thanks for reading and thanks to anyone, who tested Sacral! Currently, there haven't been many 4v4 playtests. We do know that 2v2 is more methodical and slower paced, so 3v3 might actually be the perfect matchup, who knows? :)

By the way, the pictures are a bit tricky. The fog on this map constantly changes, just so you know.

 

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