Star Wars Galaxies – Sony Online Entertainment

Star Wars Galaxies - Sony Online Entertainment

Company: Sony Online Entertainment (now DayBreak Studios)
Job Title: Game Designer
Editor/Engine: Proprietary/Linux/Java 4.21
Other Tools/Languages: Perl
Start/End Dates: June 2003 – January 2011
Primary Duties:

  • Scripted/Programmed quarterly quest content as well as several mini-games.
  • Wrote quest story arcs based on Star Wars lore and upcoming books.
  • Created 3D game levels, placed 3D terrain and props, created sounds and particle effects.
  • Mentored and managed design apprentice program.
Pod Racer #1
One of my duties was to implement new vehicles and provide feedback for art to better tune the vehicle and the player avatar sitting animation.


What I was responsible for:
• Creation of the Pod Racer Electricity Particle System using the proprietary particle system tools.
• Hook up of vehicle start, loop and stop sounds provided by Lucas Arts.
• Set up the vehicle top speed based on existing vehicles in the game.
• Be the initial tester for vehicle and player animations.

Pod Racer #2
Another Pod Racer Vehicle I implemented for Star Wars Galaxies. In this video you can see rubber-banding where the vehicle is actually attempting to travel faster than the server could keep track. This combined with speed hack countermeasures capped the top speed of vehicles.


What I was responsible for:
• Creation of the Pod Racer Electricity Particle System using the proprietary particle system tools.
• Hook up of vehicle start, loop and stop sounds provided by Lucas Arts.
• Set up the vehicle top speed based on existing vehicles in the game.
• Be the initial tester for vehicle and player animations.

The Greeter System
I designed and implemented "The Greeter” NPC system in Java 4.21 based on a player’s forum idea. The Greeter was a consumable reward object that allowed the owner to spawn a specific NPC in their house. This NPC had a variety of behaviors that could be configured by the owner, with the most obvious behavior of greeting each player that entered the house. Greeter NPCs had up to 15 different voice over lines and 30 different emotes that could be triggered when a visitor entered the home. The Greeter system involved several different types of characters such as Jawas, X­-Wing Pilots, Imperial Officers, Stormtroopers, etc.


What I was responsible for:
• Programming/Scripting of The Greeter System.
• Set up of all voice overs, animations and behaviors.
• Creation of the UI allowing player configuration of their Greeter NPCs.

Bugged Power Chair Vehicle
The Power Chair was featured in Star Wars Episode 2 when Cliegg Lars lost his leg to a Tusken Raider attack on Tatooine. As you can see from the video, there are some substantial issues with this initial art implementation. The entire vehicle was incorrectly rotated 180 degrees during the modeling phase making it travel backward when used. The seating animation is also incorrect. Both issues where corrected and the final Power Chair worked as intended.


What I was responsible for:
• Creation of the Pod Racer Electricity Particle System using the proprietary particle system tools.
• Hook up of vehicle start, loop and stop sounds provided by Lucas Arts.
• Set up the vehicle top speed based on existing vehicles in the game.
• Be the initial tester for vehicle and player animations.

AI Helper Tool
While still in QA I scripted a tool that allowed QA to spawn any creature or NPC in game and give it commands through a series of menus. For instance, a dangerous creature could be spawned with all of the relevant statistics from the combat system, but it wouldn't attack the tester until the tester requested combat. QA could command the NPC or creature to do a variety of things such as test resistances or test dance moves.


What I was responsible for:
• Programming/Scripting of AI Helper Tool.
• Programming of all AI and combat features in the tool.