Team Size

Team Role

Genre

Company

Platform

Project year

Engine

7

Technical Designer

Unreal Engine 4

PC

2018 - 2019

Multiplayer FPS

Emissive Games

Project description

Retro Rockets is a 3v1 multiplayer fps. Play as one of the Retronauts and work togather to clear objectives or play as the killing robot Destructo and use its unique abilities to hunt and kill, but be careful. Killed Retronauts have an opportunity to make the hunter become the hunted by coming back as a Securobot, an unkillable force armed with rocketlaunchers.

Main Responsibilities

Combat Design:Design and implement one of Destructo's main abilities

I had to design one Destructo's main abilities. This ability would be the last one for the character's current set and would be used to compliment an ambush focused playstyle.

During playtests we came to find out that it can be quite challenging to hit a Retronaut with a normal stab attack. Destructo can solve this by shooting its plasma gun to stun a Retronaut to stab or a Securobot to make it safer for them to get away or stab a Retronaut. The plasma gun has quite a bit of cooldown though so it cannot be used in quick succession. Due to its versatility we also could not lower the cooldown time as that would easily make it too powerful.

So the ability had to be something that would aid Destructo's ambush focused playstyle, help it ease the aiming of its stabs and be an answer to the powerful Securobots.

I came up with an charged homing attack. The player would need to charge the attack for a short while in order to use it. Destructo's movement speed will be slowed while it is charged to prevent players from running around the level with it fully charged and also to incentivize its use in ambushes.

While it is fully charged it will take a bit of time to lock on to the closest target that is in line of sight. The lock on time is also used to prevent the ability from being spammed. After the lock on time the player will receive audio and visual feedback that the target is currently locked on to. If the target is out of range it the reticle will turn red. If Destructo attacks again when the reticle is green it will rush to the target and execute a stab attack. This attack will go straight to the struggle state if you attack a Retronaut or will perform a powerful knockback attack to a Securobot to create some space.

Design and implement several interactable items that support the general design of the game.

I first brainstormed ideas and put them in different categories divided by how they are activated, damage type received or dealt and if its purpose is to only enrich the level or if it also has a gameplay purpose. 

After brainstorming I would decide on which ideas to further work out and pitch. Scope as well as other pros and cons would be kept in mind during this and possible risks would be stated during the pitch itself.

After we decided on the items I would create, test and iterate on them. Some of the examples that are in the current playable demos are:

  • A fire extinguisher that can be blown up to create some sort of smokescreen to blind other or block line of sight. Hitting the top of the extinguisher can make it fly across the room giving players the option of using it as some sort of mid range smoke grenade. 

  • Confetti filled balloons. These balloons can be by popped by attacks or by the Destructo walking to close to them. When popped they emit a loud and festive sound effect that can be hear from a distance. There is a chance these balloons have confetti in them. If a player is too close to a confetti filled balloon when popped the confetti will stick to them and they will leave a colourful trail that can help other players to find you.

  • An unstable battery. Batteries are key items the Retronauts need to carry in order to to solve objectives and win the game. Unstable batteries can also be found throughout the level. These batteries can be charged with electrical damage and be used just like normal batteries to give Retronauts more chances to solve their objectives. However, unstable batteries have an added risk to them. Once they receive enough electrical damage they will explode and release an electrical field. Everyone caught up in the field will be stunned for a duration. If the Destructo is close enough it will even receive damage.  This can be used on both sides. To drop and activate a a surprise trap for a chsing Destructo, or for the Destructo to use and stun possibly the entire team.

Bugfixing and technical polishing of new and existing systems