Hi, I am Philippe Cwik, a 28 years old guy that is in love with level design for nearly all his life. I focus on making high quality maps for multiplayer real-time strategy games. The eSports side of these games is a huge draw for me because seeing professional players exploit every single bit of my maps is something very satisfiying. Currently, I’m looking to expand my level design knowledge and skills in all kinds of games.
2010 – 2020
Starcraft 2 is the game on which i honed most of my level design and level building skills. The eSports side of games is a major point of interest because it gives me a great thrill to make high quality maps possible for high caliber tournaments and ranked ladder. During all those years i spent making Starcraft 2 maps, my tasks were the following:
- Whiteboxing the map layouts with balance and interesting features for the players
- Testing the maps with high level players
- Making gorgeous and easily readable environments
- Avoiding all the cliping of units into the environment
- QA for other team members during the ESV team days.
Here is a list of all my maps that have been used in the official ladder and high caliber tournaments :
Tainted Radiance is a Rogue-like Real-time Strategy (RTS) game i am currently creating since 2020 with Tristan Charial which is the programmer of the team.
I wanted to create my own RTS game for a very long time and last year was a good time for my first attempt. Because of the very small size of the team, Tristan and I knew the scope of our game had to be limited.
We both enjoy RTS games and Rogue-likes but there are barely any games that mixes both. Because of the high natural replayability and the relatively low requirements of unique content for Rogue-like games, we thought creating such a game was feasible for us.
I focus on designing the systems of the game: The units, weapons, skills and upgrades. This is also my first direct experience with game balance where i spent many hours in spreadsheets.
My other major work was around the level design. So far, i created handcrafted multiplayer maps. This project brings a big change because the game is exclusively single-player and each level is generated procedurally.
Levels are generated in the following way :
- The procedure selects a random island from the library of handcrafted islands. Ideally, we would prefer to create the shape of the island procedurally but Tristan already has his hands more than full. Also, our current handcrafted islands are good enough for their purpose.
- The unit types that will be present on the island are selected.
- Three waves of enemy units are generated by spending a “Power” score that is tied to the level. Each enemy unit has a “Power” score so the balancing of the level is more comfortable.
- The player’s spawn point is chosen among multiple ones. Our islands are completely assymetrical so the player plays a bit differently depending on where his units spawned.
- The enemy’s spawn points that are more than 10 tiles away from the player’s spawn point are chosen. This prevents long range enemy units to shoot at the player as soon as the level begins.
- Neutral interactive objects are spawned on the island. The player can use those to his advantage but the chaotic design of the combat can turn interactive objects against him.
2018 – 2020
During the past few years, i created multiple small games in Unity. I created my first game alone, Bound, before entering the Professional Bachelor’s Degree in Game Design near Paris. It is a rythm game in which i tried to do the level design in a rational way.
My other games were made in a team with developers and artists. In every project, i was focusing on the level design. I also spent a lot of time rationalizing the game systems.
The game I am currently working on is called Tainted Radiance.
Starbow was one of the most succesful melee mods in Starcraft II. I helped the team by making high quality maps for their ranked games map pools and tournaments.
I was a pillar of this game’s map-making community. I bringed my experience of tournament maps from Starcraft 2 into Planetary Annihilation. This game’s editor was quite restricted in terms of level design and environment art but i still managed to make interesting maps. This game has spherical maps which are a total game changer in the way in designing RTS maps. These maps don’t have any corners so it gives players more freedom of action. The tournaments ran by the community used very often some of the maps i made.
Starcraft: Brood War
2007 – 2010
Starcraft: Brood War is the game where i started making multiplayer maps in 2007. Over the years, i improved enough to have two of my maps used in the biggest unofficial 1 versus 1 ladder server: iCCup.