- Movie themed for environmental immersion
- Environmental hazards add special flavor and gameplay
- Hills and valleys exploration gameplay
- High view distance
Tatooine was the first planet I had a chance to work on, and remains my favorite. As designers we would form groups in other MMOs and look at spacing between points of interest and widths of different paths. I drew inspiration from a number of different game sources and movie scenes like Return of the Jedi where Luke freed his friends from Jabba the Hutt.
The Dune Sea had a special strategy where one could travel to the top of a dune and see their objective. While they were in the dune's valley, players felt like they were exploring. Since this area was mostly free of props, we could have a strong view distance capitalizing on the feeling too look out and see the endless stretches of dunes. This really drew players into being immersed in one of Star Wars iconic planets.
The edges of the playable area are deliberately vague, having an exhaustion zone to keep them on the map. As the players enter the exhaustion zone, a sandstorm starts to pick up, and gets more and more intense the further the away from the playable border they travel.
The Sarlaac Pit was a stretch goal if art had enough room in the pipeline to include it. To make it fit in the schedule, we had to make the Pit a static prop with a death volume at the bottom. Although this Sarlaac misses the rything tenticals from its movie cousin, the fans get a sense of being in the movie.