Tom Armitage

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Kyle Gabler released the entirety of his soundtrack to World of Goo a few months ago, as previously mentioned on Offworld.

Now, Sebastien Wolff has gone one further, having arranged the entirety of the soundtrack for solo piano, and made his scores available for download. They’re available in PDF, Midi, and Sibelius formats, but I’d recommend the PDF if only for the charming art direction of the whole affair.

It’s strictly unofficial, but Sebastien’s produced smart, entertaining arrangements of the already charming soundtrack, and given how much we love World of Goo here at Offworld, how could we not link to this?

World of Goo complete piano sheet music [Sebastien Wolff, via Rock, Paper, Shotgun]

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Tom Armitage

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[Guest blogger Tom Armitage can usually be found writing at Infovore, about games, design, software, and whatever else takes his fancy. By day, he works as a maker and writer, most of the time for Schulze & Webb; by night, he’s a Tauren Hunter, a passable Abel, a shoddy Cammy, and slayer of thousands of zombies.]

Steve Gaynor’s latest post on Fullbright is a lovely analysis of one of the parallels between level design and architecture. Using BioShock as an example, Steve considers the problems facing a level designer wanting to keep players oriented and making progress within the game.

That’s not too hard if you’re on a strictly linear ride. In a game like BioShock, though, a degree of freedom is important to the player’s experience of a game (and in this particular example, you could argue it’s essential). And that freedom is often delivered through much less linear kinds of level design.

How does the designer keep the player oriented, and give them the information they need to easily navigate from one side of the level to the other?” That’s the question Steve sets out to answer. The parallels with real-world architecture he draws are interesting. This, for instance:

minor spaces are always closer to major spaces than they are to other minor spaces– the player always passes through the hub to get to another spoke.

seems like as important a maxim for real buildings as it does for the fictional ones of Andrew Ryan’s Rapture.


It reminds me a lot of Matthew Frederick’s 101 Things I Learned In Architecture School – which is, if you’ve not read it, a delightful and very readable book that serves as a nice crash course in some maxims of architecture. It’s not going to qualify you to build skyscrapers, but as a series of notes on the construction of spaces to be experienced by humans, it’s well worth a read, and has all manner of interesting crossovers with many forms of design.

It’s a good post, anyhow, and well worth your time – as is Steve’s blog, if you’re interested in all things game design. Although Fullbright is his personal blog, Steve’s a designer at 2K Marin – who are currently working on BioShock 2 – and whilst he openly admits that this post, is “personal observations having spent a lot of time examining the levels from BioShock, and not any kind official process or information”, it’s always nice to know that there’s a certain kind of thoughtfulness going into the games you’re looking forward to playing.

Reorienteering: spatial organization in BioShock [Fullbright]

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