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A Parable of Rust and Rot



Time Span:

Team Size:



Source / Hammer

6 Weeks

1 Developer

Mission Designer


Mission Designer | Event Scripter | Level Designer

Commentary Video

High Concept

I designed "A Parable of Rust and Rot" for Half Life 2: Episode Two to appeal to First Person Shooter fans. Genre conventions like half cover/full cover and ammo, as well as tropes like exploding barrels and man-able turrets became part of my repertoire. I learned that I could design for an audience unlike myself.

In addition to FPS action, this level also features environmental and scripted storytelling, gravity gun puzzles and an original world space. All of these elements needed to work together to provide a cohesive experience with a core message and gameplay theme while fitting the Half Life 2 mold. It allowed me to practice design principles in a professional editor, and cut teeth as a level designer.

Development Timeline

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Level Design Document


Initial Gameplay

Gameplay Complete



Drafted up maps for interior and exterior space.

Gathered visual references and wrote dialogue script.

Sculpted the geometry. Put in large, medium, small objects.

First pass at gameplay: puzzle and combat.

Finished first pass at all gameplay elements.

Added dialogue sequences and lighting.

Improved and polished the puzzle, combat, and narrative.

Started adding decorative props.

Flashing lights, trim, decals, skybox, vents, more props.

Improved the enemy AI.

Midground objects, more decals, rubble, extra monitors, NPC animations, rafters, light sources.

Photo Gallery
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