informa
/
Design
Featured Blog

The Art of War: Gears of War - Knock Knock

A combat analysis of one of the standout levels in Gears of War, looking at how successful design principles are used to create an entertaining combat experience.

Introduction

Crafting satisfying combat encounters is by no means a simple feat. Few titles are renowned for successfully delivering gratifying combat scenarios for players to experience. Much can be learnt through analysing some of the best examples that are on offer, and extracting the key principles and they way they have been implemented to gain a better understanding of what makes them so rewarding. This is an analysis of the Knock Knock level in Gears of War, taking into account some of Epic's publicised design principles as well as more general understanding of cover based shooter combat and level design.

Hourglass

One of the much lauded aspects of Gears of War's level design was its "hourglass" sequence structure. More open arenas, referred to by Epic developers as "combat bowls" are linked together by confined corridors. This creates an expanding and contracting volume of space as you move through the environment, which is where the hourglass dubbing comes from.

Image

Latest Jobs

Sucker Punch Productions

Bellevue, Washington
08.27.21
Combat Designer

Xbox Graphics

Redmond, Washington
08.27.21
Senior Software Engineer: GPU Compilers

Insomniac Games

Burbank, California
08.27.21
Systems Designer

Deep Silver Volition

Champaign, Illinois
08.27.21
Senior Environment Artist
More Jobs   

CONNECT WITH US

Register for a
Subscribe to
Follow us

Game Developer Account

Game Developer Newsletter

@gamedevdotcom

Register for a

Game Developer Account

Gain full access to resources (events, white paper, webinars, reports, etc)
Single sign-on to all Informa products

Register
Subscribe to

Game Developer Newsletter

Get daily Game Developer top stories every morning straight into your inbox

Subscribe
Follow us

@gamedevdotcom

Follow us @gamedevdotcom to stay up-to-date with the latest news & insider information about events & more