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Interviews with Top Builders - Part 1

A few weeks back we asked Big Bang Racing top level creators, n00b and Nino, to partcipate in our improvised interview.
We sent them out the questions and got immediate positive feedback! Thank you guys :smile: This is a very interesting read and we are proud to share it with you exclusively on BBR Forum - enjoy!


Q1: How was your first experience with making levels?

n00b: The first thing I did when I went into the level editor was mess around with all the gadgets and materials to see what it was all like and what I could do with them. I was pretty amazed by how simple it all was to use, so I got the hang of it pretty quickly. My very first actual attempt at making a level was more of a test of everything to see how it could all work (or not work) flowing through a level. Overall, my first experience making levels was incredible. Everything was so easy to use and even with such simple gadgets, over time you learn how to combine things to make more complicated stuff, such as the overpowered player launcher that was quite popular for awhile. I have a soft spot for stuff like this, creating stuff with all the gadgets is super fun.

Q2: Were you an instant success? Or did you fail in a few levels before you got the hang of it?

n00b: I was definitely not an instant success! My first level that I made didn't get more than 30 plays up until when I became popular. Even when my most played level was published it wasn't immediately played as much as it is now. I'm not sure why it happened, but I went on vacation and that's when all of a sudden I got popular: I gained about 3000 followers in just 4 days. Even after that, most of the levels I publish are nowhere near as popular as that one.

Q3: How much time does it usually take to build a level?

n00b: Most of my levels I spend around 1-3 hours working on. Some exceptions are some shorter levels like my player launcher level which was much faster to make. I generally make a level as soon as I get an idea for one, but sometimes I will write down ideas if I don't have the time to make it right away. Usually I will work on a level in 2 or 3 sessions. In 1 or 2 sessions I will plan out where the player will go, make the path, add gadgets, and make sure I can get through the level. In the last session I add decorations (as much as the thermometer will let me) and test the level 10-15 times to make sure there's nothing that could go wrong.

Q4: What is the best level you think you have made?

n00b: I'm pretty proud of my first auto level because of how well rated it is, but the level I think is best that I have made is "Infested Waters." This was my first and one of my only levels centered around looks. The reason I like it so much is because of the simple and (in my opinion) pretty well decorated main path, but all the maps are hidden through camouflaged portals. I feel like that level would be the most likely to be a real level due to it's slight challenge.

Q5: What is the Editor item that you like the most (or a combination of items)?

n00b: Definitely the treadmill. It's so simple and to be quite honest doesn't have too many combination options (that I've found), but it is amazing at what it can do. I have used them in the majority of my levels whether as a jump, loop, or simply a speed boost. And probably my favourite thing about them is that it makes any vehicle, regardless of it's cc, move the same speed which is very helpful for getting jumps to be as precise as possible for everyone playing the level.

Q6: What would you tell new builders to help them start creating cool levels?

n00b: First and foremost, and I know it sounds cheesy, but it's about having fun. Make the levels that you want to make. Experiment. Some of my most popular levels I made to test an idea I had, some popular levels I even made as a joke, and people just happened to like it. That being said, some extra tips that in my opinion make a level better:
(a) Keep surfaces like loops and places where you are supposed to go fast smooth. It's hard to keep up your speed if you aren't able to drive. If you want a bumpy part in your level though, go for it.
(b) Decorate. Sometimes the thermometer is full, and that's ok, but if it isn't try and throw in some decoration for something to look at. Regardless of whether the thermometer is full, you can use other materials to decorate as well.
(c) This one is simple, avoid making a blank level. Especially for races, as it does not make it fair to lower ccs.
(d) Make sure you pick the right mode (race/adventure). If you are going to have a puzzle or pretty hard level, make it adventure because you are able to take your time, try as many times as you want, and the ghosts of other racers don't give away the answers. Also, avoid putting automatic elevators and/or gears in racing levels because it destroys any lead you would have had.
(e) Test a lot. Due to not being able to edit/delete published levels, when you hit that "Publish" button, there's no going back. You always want to catch an error or oddity in your level while you can change it.
(f) Don't make the level too short or too long. Nobody really wants to spend less time in a level than the time it takes to load it or have to redo a 10 minute long level (that may be a bit exaggerated but I'm sure you get the idea) after dying accidentally.

I figure I might as well add some cool stuff I've found you can do with gadgets and stuff:
(a) When drawing or erasing with material, it does not cut into other materials. This means you can make molds with square materials for circular ones and vice versa.
(b) Fans and treadmills can move physics objects such as boulders and planks.
(c) By zooming in and out while panning to the side, you can center the camera outside the dome which will let you place objects outside the dome! Takes some practice, but it's fun to mess around with.
(d) Gears can be stacked together to make a wheel.
(e) Treadmills do not have strength increased by stacking them, however black holes and fans do.
(f) There is a short period of time where the player cannot enter a portal after exiting one, which can let you make things such as player launchers.

Q7: What new tools do you think would help new builders during the design process?

n00b: The features included as of now work really well. To make things easier though, maybe there could be some form of grid lock for square materials so it's easier to make a straight line. Same-ish thing for circle materials, It might be cool to have a tool that lets you make a perfect circle. Two features that aren't there as of now that would be pretty awesome is some way to credit people for ideas, like the description thing that was previously in the game, and (it's been brought up on the forum a lot) a way to share levels to a select few people (like your team) to test before it goes completely public so you can fix up anything the additional testers may have found.

Q8: Anything else that you would like to add?

n00b: This is my favourite mobile game ever!! It's the only thing I've ever seen an ad for and not only choose to look at, but as soon as I saw it I was like "I have to get this game." Love the game, love the community, and I have to say, the staff at Traplight are amazing. Thanks so much to everyone there for contributing to make this thing, it's epic!



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