X360, PS3, PC Tuesday, May 12, 2009 | 4:07 PM

Riddick AoDA dev diary

Riddick AoDA dev diary

Even though the game has been released for some time now, Atari released this developer diary of The Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena, where the developers go and explain with lots of details how their level design process works. Quite interesting.


Concept to Final dev diary

All comments

Commented on 2009-05-12 17:34:26
Will buy this soon.
Commented on 2009-05-12 19:42:54
I haven't beat it yet, but I think it's pretty awesome and I don't buy the crap that they made it too much of a shooter. The first third of Dark Athena is all stealth-based, the other third has been lots of shooting, and the other third I guess we'll see.
Commented on 2009-05-12 21:58:40
In the demo, I was using stealth all the way till the end.

Took alotsa time though.

So I do think it's all about the person playing the game.
Commented on 2009-05-12 22:31:32
The Butcher bay part was AWESOME GOTY material but the Dark Athena part SUCKED!!! So much shooting and the game performs badly on my top of the line machine...the frame rate kept hoovering arround 30 - 60 FPS making it unplayable...
Commented on 2009-05-12 23:42:11
I've always been madly interested by level design and scripting in games, great video, and after my last exam, I'm picking this up since I loved the Darkness so much.
Commented on 2009-05-12 23:48:30
I've steered clear of this one even though I loved Butcher Bay and, initially, was looking forward to this one.

The Dark Athena level design just isn't all that compelling imo. Wish they'd dump this engine and move on to a PROPER sequel. I'm more and more inclined to believe Riddick BB was a fluke, looking at the lack of similar quality in both The Darkness and Dark Athena.
Commented on 2009-05-13 08:14:37 In reply to Doom_Bringer
Posted by Doom_Bringer
The Butcher bay part was AWESOME GOTY material but the Dark Athena part SUCKED!!! So much shooting and the game performs badly on my top of the line machine...the frame rate kept hoovering arround 30 - 60 FPS making it unplayable...
30-60 FPS is unplayable? Since when?
Commented on 2009-05-13 13:05:58 In reply to Jato
Posted by Jato
I've steered clear of this one even though I loved Butcher Bay and, initially, was looking forward to this one.

The Dark Athena level design just isn't all that compelling imo. Wish they'd dump this engine and move on to a PROPER sequel. I'm more and more inclined to believe Riddick BB was a fluke, looking at the lack of similar quality in both The Darkness and Dark Athena.
The Darkness was excellent, where was the lack of quality? The subway? The hell zone? The new york streets? Apartments? Clubs?
Commented on 2009-05-13 15:17:17
The Darkness, sadly, is hit or miss. I loved it. One of my best friends, did not.

Some games are just that way. Go figure.

As for Dark Athena. Loved it; even more than Butcher Bay in some areas. Most of the game is stealth - almost all the sections on the Dark Athena are. They do get some balls-to-the-walls shooter bits in, but just like with Butcher Bay, those tend not to work as well as the all out stealth sections.

Sadly, I have not completed Dark Athena yet, but that is only because my 360 RRoDed, when I was in the colony level. Now there is a section that starts out pretty cool with some rather fun platforming and puzzle solving bits. Followed up with a bit of stealth. Unfortunately, manages to devolve to almost purely shooter (at least the section it had gotten to that point by the time I found the FLAC gun).

I think in future Riddick products, Starbreeze should dump the entire "shooter" thing almost completely, and focus more on the stealth. The stealth is where Riddick truly shines (that an the Ulaks), and leaves you more often than not, feeling like a real bad ass, unstoppable predator. The stealth is what really makes the series rock, and that is where Starbreeze ought to keep the games primarily focused. The hand-to-hand combat with the Ulaks is also pretty bad ass, and a definite improvement over the hand-to-hand in Butcher Bay. So definitely more hand-to-hand in the series future. And as I stated above, even though (so far where I am at in the game) it is grossly underused (and a bit underdeveloped), I think platforming and puzzle solving if handled right, could fit right in to give the game some variation. I know the shooting/action bits in the game are there to change things up a bit, but outside of the bits where you commandeer a mech, the shooting really does not fit all that well with the rest of the game. I'd rather they improve the use of better platforming and puzzles in future games in the series, as a way to break of the action, than continue to try and shove a balls-to-the-walls shooter in there.

Anyway. Despite it's shortcomings, I had a lot of fun playing both. Now I just have to wait until it comes back up in my Gamefly queue, so that I can finally finish it.
Commented on 2009-05-13 18:44:04 In reply to digi_matrix
Posted by digi_matrix
The Darkness was excellent, where was the lack of quality? The subway? The hell zone? The new york streets? Apartments? Clubs?
Everything. The level design (hell zone=most boring level ever), overwhelming backtracking, poor...no TERRIBLE shooting mechanics, poor overal design choices (constantly having to destroy lights), etc. There just wasn't much going for it, except for the dialogue. Story was crap as awell in contrary to popular believe. It just was a very average game with some very poor design choices.
Commented on 2009-05-13 20:13:56
Well the I loved the original and I still have to play Dark Athena some more to have a serious opinion...

About the game


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