Deciding where to Spawn Players

Introduction:

When designing a multiplayer level one of the things that needs to be taken into consideration is where the players spawn. This is something that people think is simple however player spawns can make or break a level. If a player is constantly spawning too far away from the action they have to spend time getting to the action, if they are constantly respawning this can be very frustrating. On the other hand it can be just as frustrating to the player to spawn too close to the action, if they respawn too close to the action they have a chance to be killed right as they spawn which is (in my opinion) one of the most frustrating experiences in gaming.

Space Dunk Spawns:

When designing levels for Space Dunk the spawns constantly get moved, the players can’t die so respawning is restricted to after a team scores and the game resets. This poses its own set of problems, since the players respawn after a goal is scored so all the player have to respawn at the same time. When I was creating the half-court level I originally had the spawns on the opposite side of the map from the hoop. The problem with this method was the player would respawn and then immediately be able to grab the ball and easily make a shot. This turned the level into a race to see who can get the ball first and which ever team reached the ball first was almost guaranteed to score. After testing the map we decided to move the spawns to the same side as the hoop, this had the players initially running away from the hoop to get the ball then having to run back to the hoop to score.

Conclusion:

When deciding where to place the spawns remember that QA testing is the best way to find out if the spawn locations are good. The nice thing about spawn locations is that they are easy to move and test in different locations.

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