This was my initial idea for the second level in the game, the triskele trees. The goal of the level was to heal the great tree in the middle which would enable the path to continue to the third level of the game. In order to do this the player would have to get to the smaller corrupted trees in each circle (actually a triskele) and heal them, which in turn would be able to heal the bigger tree. The thought behind this was that they had the same roots, the roots would also help guide the players to the tree by creating a visible link to the big tree.
This part was called Spiral Hill for most of the production. The player would have to make it to the top of the hill to heal the tree.
Once on top of the hill I really wanted the player to be able to look down on the rest the of the map. I always believed that creating epic scenes in an organic way that shows the player what is to come, while also being pretty look at, is something very desirable.
Unfortunately this did not work out because of huge lag. Maybe we could have made it work if we had more time and technology but having any large areas at all was deemed unviable for the game.
Early on in development I wanted the levels to be very much like puzzles. Very compact and with many places to trick pursuers. This particular level was whiteboxed by me and tested for quite a while, before we decided to cut the level completely from the game due to time constraints.
This was the whitebox (more like greenbox now but whatever) for the main hub of the finished game. For the final version of the game both level 1 and 3 where cut, including the part of level 2 above this picture. So we were left with one pretty big tree, "spiral hill", and one more area, which we called the water area, all in all it is basically the triskele trees minus one area. Following above picture the player where to start at the southern blue block. The hill was to the right and the water area to the left.
While we never made a follow up level to the triskele trees (other than an almost empty room) we still wanted to leave the game open to expansion, and at the same time also give the player a goal. The picture above shows the tree blocking the road to this 'next' area which is basically just the credits.
This picture was created from zooming out the level in our game maker studio prototype of the game. It is the design of the game's second level which has an electronic theme.
The screenshots from the zoomed out levels in game maker where extremely low-res, as such I created high-res pictures in photoshop that were supposed to me more clear. They were also made to be the right resolution right from the start so the artists could then just draw backgrounds on overlays of the picture and it would turn out fine.
The game's endboss was supposed to be a huge vaccuum-dragon. As such I designed abilities for it. The picture above was used to demonstrate how the boss would cough up objects and dust, that the player could pick up during the fight to regain health.
These two pictures depicted the boss' normal attack, where he just vacuums half room at a time, getting stuck in the flow would pull the player towards the boss and getting eaten would be an insta-death mechanic. Maybe not the most suiting for a kids game, in retrospect.
In the finale the boss would would pull the whole room with a wide sweep, it was not as powerful as the earlier ones, but it would also pull objects from all over the room that the player would have to dodge.
In Europa Univeralis 4 Taiwan is a horribly undetailed island, completely lacking everything from playable tribes, logical province borders to even trees. Seeing as my girlfriend is from the island I thought it fitting to make a mod for it, making it more detailed, this also had the added benefit of her being able to help me with research.
This close-up showcases the provinces and colors I have chosen for the mod...
...and this picture showcases how it currently looks zoom-outed in the game.
Editing provinces in EU4 is done in pixels. Since I love making maps, this was probably the most enjoyable part for me of making the mod, but unfortunately it did not last very long.
The first Taiwanese idea is "Headhunting", a sport many, especially the mountain tribes, engaged in.
Giving only one single bonus, like morale, is incredibly boring and I knew I wanted most of the ideas to give at least 2 distinct bonuses. It just makes it more interesting to design and balance, while also giving the nations a little additional depth for the players.
To make a mod adding nations feel engaging, unique events are a must. In reality there doesn't seem to be too much history of the tribes engaging in politics across the sea, but seeing as Taiwan getting united by a single tribe didn't happen either one can get a bit creative with these parts. It is very important to at least make them seem feasible, while at the same making something interesting happen.
This particular event may seem to simply add some opinion with the Ming Empire, but if you read the text you will also see that it sets a country flag called "accepted_china_influence". This in turn is used in a later event that fires another event related to China and your tribe.
Any country using only the standard missions feel horribly incomplete in the game's current state. As such I felt that I needed to at least add a few unique ones for the tribes, while at the same time modifying some existing ones. The result is a modified generic mission table with some unique flavor to it.
This mod was made a few months before the Taiwan mod and it was both more and less ambitious at the same time. The mod mainly entails simply making unique modifiers for a variety of provinces with a few events thrown in for good measure. Reality is that every single modifier requires extensive research in order not to misrepresent the area historically, while also providing some interesting gameplay bonuses. The mod was originally supposed to cover many more countries and provinces but this did not come to be, and probably never will.
This map/mod for Starcraft 2 changed enormously over the period I worked on it. At first it was a single-player map focused on intentionally placing 'bugs' all around the game and having people play through it and try to learn to utilize them.
In the end it was converted to a 2-player duelling game of blazing fireballs with 'cheats'.