STREETS OF RAGE

Ruffian Games

Position: Project Lead

Duration: ~6 months

Engine: CryEngine 3

Information

Following the cancellation of Codename: Kingdoms, Ruffian began working on a number of projects, one of which was a pitch to Sega to create a new Streets of Rage title. I was a massive fan of the original games, and being given the chance to bring back such a well-loved franchise was like a dream come true. Unfortunately, Sega cancelled the project before reaching the necessary stage gate to properly fund production, but not before a significant amount of pre-production was completed, as well as the initial prototype that spawned the project in the first place.

Though my company role was officially lead level designer, the project was very much under my supervision, and I was solely responsible for creating the pitch document as well as the formation and direction of the prototyping team.

The Pitch

The pitch consisted of a high level design document and was accompanied by a slideshow presentation. The pitch outlined the proposed game and design pillars as well as an environment and casting guide. The slideshow contained production and budgetary facts along with a video of the prototype in action. This was presented directly to Sega by Ruffian’s Creative Director,  Ruffian’s Studio Head, and myself.

The Prototype

Using experience gained from work on Codename:Kingdoms, the prototype was built in CryEngine 3. This had me working closely with the art team, where I’d provide them with a number of whitebox prototypes, mood boards and annotated rough paint overs to guide asset creation. I also assisted programmers with scripting and tuning a new spline-based camera that was influenced by player position and movement. The new camera system was tied to the level design metrics that were being driven by a number of whitebox prototypes I had built. Additionally, I worked closely with animators to create two cinematics to introduce and bookend gameplay as a means to illustrate our final production value intentions.

The prototype was created in less than 6 weeks by a small but dedicated team.

Responsibilities

  • Establishing gameplay pillars and leading the vision of the project
  • Responsible for pitch material from concept to playable prototype
  • Designing combat spaces and scripting set pieces within CryEngine 3
  • Collaborating with the combat designer to script AI behaviours and wave logic