ACM - Computers in Entertainment

Level design optimization guidelines for game artists using the epic games

By Christian Rubino, John Power
SPECIAL ISSUE: Media Arts (Part II), [Vol. 6, No. 4]

DOI: 10.1145/1461999.1462007

This article aims to provide guidelines for artists during the planning stages of game-level design and production that will anticipate an optimal balancing point between rich graphical content and sufficiently fast frame rates. To achieve this end, a detailed examination will be undertaken on data optimization methods, occlusion systems, and planning strategies with the intention of streamlining game production and level design to give the result of expertly optimized game levels.

The means to achieving this aim are

• to define what factors affect frame rates: terrain, binary space partitioning (bsp), static mesh, decorators, and particle emitters; and

• to discuss potential occlusion solutions and test them: zone fog, anti portals, and zone portals; and

• to combine the results into a guide.

Using occlusion systems in the right way almost always results in faster frame rates and smoother playability, and therefore in an opportunity to supply more or at least maximize the graphical in-game content.

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