Battle Royale Design Project

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For this project I wanted to analyze the map Erangel from PUBG and create my own level of the same size.
I looked at rotation paths, the water problem and Refuge vs Prospect.

About my level

  • Developed over 4 weeks half time

  • Developed in Unreal Engine 4

  • Inspired by PUBG

The Water Problem

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When swimming in PUBG there is no counterplay to getting shot other than to pray they miss.


Shallow deltas allow players crossing the river a chance to fight back when getting shot.


Battle royale maps have been notorious for water, the vast majority of maps are even islands. 

I believe that
water is used too much in the battle royale genre. Especially since the games usually don't support acquatic combat, as level designers we need to think of different ways to create natural borders and chokepoints.

My level features just as much water, if not more than Erangel. But I tried to avoid using water in such a manner that if the player was spotted, they instantly lose.

In my level I have
two large motorways that cross the level. I wanted to use these to create chokepoints and borders, just as PUBG uses rivers. The difference becomes that if you are spotted crossing a road you can shoot back and use utility.

Chokepoints in rivers usually become the bridges that cross them, in the case of the roads on my level
I used tunnels to let players cross while the road was underground. areas with a higher density of cars also becomes a natural crossing point.

Using tunnels to create crosspoints above the motorway.

Refuge vs Prospect


When designing my level I thought alot about refuge vs prospect in the battle royale genre.

I started by painting over Erangel and sloppily
marking spots with low refuge AKA no-mans land. Places where the player feels exposed and wants to avoid at all costs. Atleast half of Erangel seemed to count as no-mans land and I decided to try to keep the same ratio in my level.

The other factor I considered while studying Erangel was
which spots had the most Prospect. Meaning the locations where a player can see a large portion of the map. These locations will naturally attract players, so I thought it would be important to spread these areas out across the island to not make all players go towards the same couple locations.

Locations with both high prospect and high refuge will be the
most desired spots on the map so I tried to give every compound less of one of these values.


Rotation paths


The roads on Erangel would never be approved by a city planner but they are genius on an island where everyone has to be able to travel anywhere.

The road system on Erangel is built up by
multiple smaller loops inside a big loop that covers the entire island. Players can enter and leave these loops at any point, meaning the roads are a smoother alternative to driving straight towards your target.

I wanted to use the same method when creating my road system, always making sure that
entering and leaving the roads is a safer and faster altenative to driving through nature.


The Circle


It's important that the circle never finishes in water, so I developed a system that takes sample points and picks the one with the least amount of water. Changing how many sample points are placed changes how random the circles becomes.

The sample points check for nearby water by looking at each one of the
evenly spaced water points (black means water) within their radius. For each water point within their radius the sample points get a score depending on how close the water point is.

Water points
compare their world position to a pixel on a texture of the island, if the pixel has an alpha value of 0, the water point is in water.

Each phase of the circle is
adjustable in a data table!