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How to make world borders/boundaries?

Discussion in 'Game Design' started by DizzyTornado, Apr 3, 2015.

  1. DizzyTornado

    DizzyTornado

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    So, I've seen many ways of doing this, but I have been unable to find a suitable way of doing this. I'm making a game similar to the new open world Zelda game, I was even thinking about copying how they do world borders for my game, but I can't really do that since it's coming out next year, and we haven't seen what the borders will look like yet. There's always the classic "mountains to the West and ocean to the East" approach, but I want something new, in my previous games I would usually just have oceans off to all sides, but for this game that won't work, just because of the envirnment, but I can't just have mountains off to all sides, since there is a lot of verticality in the game. So how do you guys think I should handle this?
     
  2. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    That depends entirely on the game's setting. You could have natural borders, as you mentioned (mountains, ocean, etc.) You could have police barricades closing off areas due to "whatever reason".

    Personally, I've always toyed with the idea of having an endless environment, but having enemies get progressively tougher the further out you go. Eventually, you reach enemies that are literally unbeatable. They will always kill you and send you back to your last save point, thus creating an intangible border.
     
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  3. smd863

    smd863

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    Discworld
     
  4. Zomby138

    Zomby138

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    Some games use a huge cliff drop, so you get to the edge and can look out, but if you try to get down you'll fall and die.

    There were some of these in Dragon age 3.

    Also in DA3 they sometimes have a sandstorm that sort of pushes you back, creating a sort if boundary.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2015
  5. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    Dragon's Dogma had evil tentacle creatures in the water that would kill you if you venture out too far.
     
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  6. TonyLi

    TonyLi

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    Following up on @khanstruct 's first question, can you describe the setting and theme of your Zelda-like? A space station could be a self-contained torus, or an underground bunker in an asteroid. A fantasy environment could be on the back of a giant turtle floating through sky or space. If you can tie the boundaries into the setting, players should be more willing to accept them.
     
  7. GarBenjamin

    GarBenjamin

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    Maybe what you can do is about 5 seconds worth of distance from the outer game world boundaries slow the player's movement speed greatly, start fading out the world and display a wavey text in large print... "Continue into Limbo and be lost forever?" The closer they get to the boundary the more the display fades until finally at about 20% alpha the player loses control and watches their character continue on forward fading into nothingness. Wait a second or two and return to the main menu. Might want to do an autosave first named "EdgeOfLimbo" or such.
     
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  8. HappyG4mer

    HappyG4mer

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    Make it a giant floating island and think of your character as one who loves his life enough that he wouldn't want to jump off. :p
     
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  9. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

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    You could always handle it the way earth does, and make your environment cycle back on itself. Go far enough west and your character actually ends up east of where they started.

    If you are going to do soft boundaries like unbeatable creatures, make sure its obvious they are meant to be boundaries. Its easy to get frustrated with a broken game if you come across unbeatable monsters.
     
  10. evan140

    evan140

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    You need to talk about anything, "Happy Gamer"?
     
  11. evan140

    evan140

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    Make it so that when make it to the border and you come back, you find your aunt and uncle have been murdered by an imperial army, but it's setup to look like the local traders did the attack. Then it unlocks a huge quest where it turns out the main character is the chosen one of an old religion and discovers his real father isn't dead!

    Nobody will notice. Do it. Do it for the force.
     
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  12. MurDocINC

    MurDocINC

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    I tried this with a terrain, I flatten the edges to same height then cloned it into a 3x3 gird. The middle was the playable area with triggers on edges to teleport player to other sides. The outer terrains were to make the teleport visually seamless. Beside a split second lag on teleport, I had an endless world. It was a small scale test though so not sure how well it would perform on large terrain with lots of objects.
     
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  13. Mr-GamingWatch

    Mr-GamingWatch

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    I suppose it all depends on the story to the game.

    Mountains/Oceans make sense if you have a large terrain like that.
    Other games use force fields that will push you back if you try to leave.
    Frequently a lot of games with an apocalyptic theme have some time of radiation which kills you.

    One of my personal favorites is in Halo to have a huge laser strike you down.
    Killed by the Guardians.
     
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  14. pixelknight

    pixelknight

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    It sounds like the theme of the game is a natural type of border possibly with a medieval theme or such so I'll assume that be the case.

    Some natural border ideas:
    Raging impassible rivers
    Forest that gets denser and denser until it cannot be traversed
    Orc battle fences with log spikes
    Big Rubble
    Destroyed village buildings with junked carts or other debris forming a wall -- Dead Island did a good job with this by removing the obstruction at a bottleneck when you've unlocked another part of the geography.
    Low cliffs that the player can see the top where the character is restricted to the traversable area
    An endless (looping) desert where the player can turn around and get back to the game quickly
    A Ravine, but the rope bridge to cross has been cut
    A dust cloud that makes it impossible to see forward (and concealing a forcefield)
    A Gnomish mine field that is guaranteed to hit the player after a certain distance
    A favorite: player-caused disaster which makes areas borders impassible (fires, giant cracks in the ground, etc)

    Some unnatural border ideas (I'm not in-favor of unnatural borders):
    A painted red line the player cannot pass
    A forcefield / magical wall
     
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  15. DizzyTornado

    DizzyTornado

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    I really like the raging river idea, the forest, and ravine/bridge idea. I think I will try those. I actually had already thought about making the game on the back of a giant turtle or other large creature, as the game is focused on large creatures such as the collosi (from SOTC), but I also wanted it to be on Earth, so that wouldn't work.
     
  16. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

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    Sometimes just being honest with you players is good. Flashing to ext on the screen that says "leaving play area" can be just as effective as contrived natural boundaries, and it prevents confusion when players think they should be able to reach an area.
     
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  17. AndrewGrayGames

    AndrewGrayGames

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    I prefer the Zelda approach of using mountains, sheer cliff faces, and other 'obvious' obstacles to block players into the play area. If the sheer obviousness of the blockage isn't enough, basic experimentation on the player's part helps them to understand, "no, you can't go past this."

    Of course...Zelda also includes subversions to this, in the form of the segment of wall that you can plant a bomb by to find a secret treaure.
     
  18. CaoMengde777

    CaoMengde777

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    lol gta san andreas you fly a plane too far and like .. you were travelling too far -> and suddenly you are flipped and travelling <- and you hardly even notice it..
     
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  19. Xoduz

    Xoduz

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    Sharks can be very effective borders in water. Also, sandworms, in deserts. :p
     
  20. pixelknight

    pixelknight

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    Made of agree.. I too enjoy clearly defined play areas that put the attention to the game. For the not so obvious sharks or sandworms. Being able to see the existence of them before getting too far out sounds smart.
     
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  21. DizzyTornado

    DizzyTornado

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    I actually thought of a new idea:
    - you have a square terrain, each side of it has trigger, if activated it will teleport you to a spawner "GameObject" opposite the direction your going in, which are also placed on all four sides of the terrain.
    - each "Spawner" has one axis locked; for example if a spawner is on the South or North part of the terrain the Z-Axis is locked; and the X-Axis is locked for the East and West sides.

    Sorry in advance, since this was probably hard to understand, (it made my own brain hurt while writing it). I wanted to have pictures to illustrate it but I didn't have time. I was pondering how to accomplish a seemingly "round world" for an entire day, lol.
     
  22. DizzyTornado

    DizzyTornado

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    Also, I wanted to do giant sandworms, but two problems; 1. One of the bosses is a giant sand worm/snake, so I only want there to be one of them. 2. The "edge" of the world isn't a desert.
    Also, isn't that the way the did borders for another game? I think it was Mad Max or something...
     
  23. DizzyTornado

    DizzyTornado

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    Oops, almost forgot, sorry for the triple post. I had a game breaking glitch. So, for whatever reason when I open the main scene for my game, there is no GI, I have no idea whats causing it as if I make a new scene GI is working great.

    Some info:
    - The terrain is 4096x4096 meters, and in the final game there will be around 12 to 18 times that much terrain, so if its the terrain causing problems, then that will need a huge workaround.
    - The only objects other than the terrain are the MainCamera, a directional light, a terrain, and a small village made with K4's Far East Pack.
    - No vegetation.
    - No Image Effects or particles.
    - No scripts.
     
  24. Bulslayer90

    Bulslayer90

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    Really depends on the environment in the game, example: in my shooter the player is in a colony on a foreign planet, the planet exterior does not support life so the whole colony is underground. Games like Ace Combat use an out of bounds system where if the player gets to close to the border of the map for too long some unknown assailant shoots them down with rockets or whatever. Other games like Halo use invisible colliders that kill the player if they touch it, these are common on levels where you can see the lower part of an area that you go to later in the level but just jumping off the cliff will kill you. I personally advise against invisible borders as much as possible, they tend to leave players with the "well why can't i go there" question and it drives some people crazy. Also invisible borders can sometimes lead to areas of you're map where the player can clearly see there is nothing else after that point. Ran into that problem when I started playing around with custom FarCry maps as a kid lol. Something Silent Hill Home Coming did that I liked was if you walked to far into the fog the main character would make some text comment or something and then turn around and walk back. You could do something like that.
     
  25. rakkarage

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  26. Not_Sure

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    Just to throw this out there:

    What about increasingly difficult encouters with enemies so that it becomes impossible to go further?
     
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  27. khanstruct

    khanstruct

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    No one ever listens to me :(
     
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  28. AndrewGrayGames

    AndrewGrayGames

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    I do!
     
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  29. Tomnnn

    Tomnnn

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    You could put yourself into the game as an npc to show up when ever the player is going out of bounds and guide them back. You can be some invincible npc that uses conjured bindings to drag people back to the nearest point of interest.
     
  30. Not_Sure

    Not_Sure

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    I heard you. I meant as a curve of difficulty rather than a monster that auto kills you.
     
  31. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

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    Just remember to make it obvious it's a boundary. I've played several games where it's appeared there should be a way to get passed a difficulty wall, if I got the right gear and a high enough level. Only to eventually google it in frustration and realise that it's not possible by design.

    The appearance of content that should be reachable, but is not, can be very frustrating.
     
  32. Tomnnn

    Tomnnn

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    Ever play a game where something that's meant to be a boundary is actually killable, letting you progress to an area you shouldn't, thus breaking the game?
     
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  33. elmar1028

    elmar1028

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    In Prototype, the whole city is surrounded by water. Whenever character falls into water, he automatically jumps out of it towards the land until he manages to go back into the game.
    There is another way to "exit" the game through the bridge, which is heavily guarded. If you try to leave the area you'll be attacked by heavy artillery and it would be a matter of seconds before you die.
    It doesn't matter if you manage to destroy all helicopters and kill all soldiers in that area, there is an invisible enemy who would send airstrikes on you, thus making it impossible to progress the bridge.

    The point: instead of doing invisible walls, have someone who would disallow player to progress any further. E.g dragon or some creature.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2015
  34. jackh3r1pp3r

    jackh3r1pp3r

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    I am also trying to create borders in my game which takes place in a city but I don't want road blocks or anything as the borders. I just want to make it so the player doesn't fall off the world. I was thinking about an invisible barrier with something akin to black smoke or ash being emitted from the borders but I don't how to accomplish that. Any suggestions?
     
  35. TonyLi

    TonyLi

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    You could use something like Fog Volume cubes as the borders, with invisible colliders a few units into the fog.
     
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  36. AndrewGrayGames

    AndrewGrayGames

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    Oo! And then, you can put dark, menacing shapes in the fog to make it even more obvious. Sort of like the mission in WoW where you have to go into the Emerald Dream to get an item.
     
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  37. AlanMattano

    AlanMattano

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    the borders are round It just end and you fall infinitely, looking the flying island.
     
  38. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

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    On the way you get a great view of the world on the back of four elephants riding on top of an massive turtle swimming through space. Sounds good to me.
     
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  39. AlanMattano

    AlanMattano

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    Yes looks simple and it makes me smile thinking about elephants and turtles :)
    Yes and that Greek God Atlas looking to you!
     
  40. Tomnnn

    Tomnnn

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    That reminded me of Chowder, one of the last shows I saw on TV before I stopped watching TV.
     
  41. Nevercallmebyname

    Nevercallmebyname

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    Could I ask about a specific use case?
    A space game with 2D controls. The playable area is roughly a circle. What do?