You've been logged out of GDC Vault since the maximum users allowed for this account has been reached. To access Members Only content on GDC Vault, please log out of GDC Vault from the computer which last accessed this account.

Click here to find out about GDC Vault Membership options for more users.


The Number One Educational Resource for the Game Industry

Session Name: Stop Getting Lost: Make Cognitive Maps, Not Levels
Speaker(s): Nicolas Oueijan
Company Name(s): thatgamecompany
Track / Format: Design
Overview: Unless a game is explicitly about navigation, getting lost in it will almost always result in an awkward and frustrating experience. This age-old problem plagued architects and urban planners long before it plagued designers in the game industry. Luckily, level designers and environment artists have the opportunity to learn valuable lessons from these more experienced disciplines. This talk will leverage cognitive science, anthropological, and urbanism research to explore what it means to get lost and how spaces can be designed to prevent this from happening. By identifying elements in the built environment that contribute to more comprehensive cognitive maps, developers can start creating virtual environments that are more navigable, memorable, and less likely to disorient players.

Game Developers Conference 2021

Nicolas Oueijan


free content