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MMM developer story Part 2

Destroying Buildings in Mighty Monster Mayhem

07 Mar 17
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When we first started building MMM, we knew the most exciting part of the game was going to be building destruction.  You’d climb, jump, throw, and eat things, but the #1 thing you’d do is destroy!

To make destruction feel how we wanted, you needed to be able to punch, crush, and tear apart every bit of every building..

Building Interiors - Old BuildingThe Prototype

Making that happen required a bit of work.  I want to note that this work was NOT done by me, but by one of our great programmers Kyle.  He started with a fracturing and destruction plugin from the asset store, then heavily modified it, built some wrappers, and made it work for our game.

Since MMM is a multiplayer game stuff gets more complicated.  Each of these destroyed chunks needed to be tracked over the network along with the state of the building.

So we prototyped it out, and it was FUN.

But there was a big issue.  If you destroyed too much of the building, you couldn’t climb up it anymore.  On top of that, when a chunk of the building came out, it was a huge solid chunk, which felt and looked strange…

Fixing the problems – The interior..

It was time to brainstorm and come up with solutions….

We spent some time coming up with ideas.  Some were good, some weren’t really feasible, and some didn’t solve the problem.

Our placeholder to test the interiors idea

Our placeholder to test the interiors idea

What we needed was a way for the player to be able to continue climbing, have a place where we could put yummy civilians for monsters to eat, and make it look cool at the same time.

The decision was made to create our buildings in a more modular way. The interior and exterior were now going to be separate objects.

The exterior would be a hollow shell placed over the interior. The interior would be an under construction or damaged building frame.  To test out the idea, we started with a placeholder building structure from the Asset Store.

We got this working quickly and it was awesome. The ‘feel’ of destroying the building was great, and you could still climb around, hold on to the inside, and crush the walls.  You could even swing yourself through the inside of the building like a real monster would…

Building Interiors - Going inside the hollow building exteriorMaking it ours

But it still didn’t really look right.  Mostly because the art was a freebie from the store that didn’t match our theme.  It was a building that was totally destroyed on the inside, which seemed out of place in a thriving cartoon city.

It was time to build our own interiors. Our art team got to work and pumped out some fancy living spaces that we could stack up and turn into a full interior structure.

Once the new interior was completed, we put everything together and the improvement was astonishing.  It finally started looking like a ‘real’ building that had been torn apart by giant monsters.

What’s Next?

Right now, we really like the building setup, and the way everything feels.  But there’s still room for improvement. You may have noticed one of the biggest outstanding issues..  The interiors are very repetitive.  Our art team is already working on some variety there both in the look by adding offices, labs, and more, but also making the inside look a bit less pristine.

As development progresses, expect to see some really amazing looking interiors, full of people and powerups to eat… and a couple surprises.

Building Interiors - Building Falling

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