Turn-Based Mayhem: The Scale of the Action

Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land info pageOne of the very early design decisions we had to grapple with was the scale of the game – by this I don’t mean the scope of it (epic, please!) but if the scale of the units in the game screen is an approximate mirror of realism or more representational. Let me explain more with pictures… Here is a screenshot from the (amazing) Advanced Wars:

Advanced Wars Screenshot

Each unit on the screen is an icon and not the real size of the unit in question; else a tank is the same size as a building, a mountain or some trees. Clearly a mountain is not the same size as a tank, what this means is the images are icons, as in ‘here is a tank unit’ or ‘here are buildings’. Nothing wrong with that way of doing things at all…

The other approach is this (screenshot from X-COM):

XCom Screenshot

What you have here is a proportionate scale – the building much bigger than each person, a doorway is the same size as a person etc.  The scale is a realistic one, the size of the people in the levels is not as an icon but realistic.   We’ve opted for this approach; the landscape in the game will have trenches and buildings in proportion to the units.  We feel for a horror game, this is better as it allows a sense of threat to the units, so a huge monster is more than a single square in size, and so the player feels the threat more…

About Tomas

Design & Production Director at Auroch Digital. Designer of Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land. Writing and blogging things that surprise, entertain and interest me...
This entry was posted in Call of Cthulhu, game design, The Wasted Land and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Turn-Based Mayhem: The Scale of the Action

  1. Pingback: The Making of Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land (via Game Dev Story) « A Great Becoming…

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