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DYLAN GALLARDO

Spacewalk


Spacewalk

A first person zero gravity movement experiment, created with Unreal Engine.

The demo video shows the progress after about three weeks of working with Unreal. This was meant to be a short project to learn Unreal and to figure out an interesting movement system for a game with a zero gravity space. I didn't want to take a 6dof approach entirely, because I wanted the movement to be based much more on needing to push and pull yourself around using the environment, rather than it feeling like having a thruster for forward/backward movement.

I settled on a sort of tether approach to attach the player to a point so they could swing themselves around. This gave a nice feeling of physicality to moving around and lets the challenge derive from figuring out what you should be grabbing rather than fighting the control scheme.

One of the most interesting design issues I had was letting the player "spiral" and roll out of control during wall impacts without it becoming too frustrating to control. The solution I found was to dampen the character's rotation and torque when the player is moving the mouse (for the camera). This allows for control when you need it most, and allows for a nice balance between playability and presentation. It even allows for the player to intentionally let themselves spiral out of control, which was a perfect little addition to allow some expression in the movement.

Sound design was another thing I emphasized here. The sounds for colliding with objects are dynamic for instance, the sound that is selected and the volume is all determined by what part of the character collides and how forceful that impact was. This helps to reinforce the physicality of the player and environment.

The environment is all placeholder art created with Unreal's BSP tools (which are very versatile). The layout is definitely not finalized, and is still very much in flux.