Developer Journal Series 1 - Environment/Location Design

Some concepts for the game environment.

In Project VeN's prototype, the story takes place in a milk bar. Today we will be talking about the design decision behind the scene and revealed some of the phased out scenes.

The project's environment has only one design pillar,  that is, to recreate Melbourne's overall "feeling" in the game. We wanted to set the plot in the place that our development team was most familiar with, therefore expressing the Melbourne feel becomes top priority.

Melbourne street-sighting sketches the Joe did for inspiration.

At the very beginning the team was struggling with what Melbourne's environment actually felt like. Graffiti, trams and deadly animals all seem to fit well. Eventually we decided that a cafe, which can be seen pretty much next to every corner in the CBD area, was chosen for delivering that Melbourne feeling. However, there are tonnes of cafes sporting different themes and concepts. Which one can capture the right mood becomes a hard choice.

Some of the concept arts for the coffee house.

Ngoc, our character designer came across the idea of a milk bar. She grew up in Melbourne and fondly remembered living next door to one. At first it seemed to be a crazy weird idea, however, it didn't beat whatever the team came up with after that. After a whole afternoon of brainstorming we decided to stick with the milk bar idea.

Once the main concept of the scene was decided, everything seemed to fall into place. First the layout of the milkbar was established, then came the main props that were going to be used, and lastly the exterior of the milkbar.

The ground plan for the interior and ideas for frontal look.

So that's how the inside cafe got to this point! Onto environments!

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