What I'm very curious about is if Nadeo is going to use the same block-based building system as in TM, and, if so, how they are going to design the blocks.
By that, I mean that there's an obvious focus in TM--the road (whether "road" means actual road, or parking lot surface, or platform, or whatever). The focus is the surface the car will normally travel on, and everything else is secondary to that.
I've been making shooter levels since Doom, and I do it for a living, and the block focus for a shooter is much more difficult to define. In a shooter, the equivalent to the road is simply "where the player can go", and that's a HUGE
range of potential places, even if you start by being very specific regarding time period and environment.
Let's say you decide one block set will be modern-day
, and subway
(which is pretty specific).
That still means that (if you're going for at least semi-realism) you need flat floors, subway tracks, subway cars (moving?), tunnel walls, stairs/escalators, flat walls, curved walls/corners (convex and concave), lights, benches, payment booths, railings, pillars/supports, some sort of waist/chest height objects for crouch cover, and mantling over, alcoves in the walls to break up gameplay and to duck into, wall decorations, and so forth.
And that's just all the normal boring stuff. Any good shooter level will have risk/reward areas, sniper spots, tighter passages (maintenance areas?), and level-over-level areas (which means a second floor of some sort, or at least a raised walkway or observation area, and just some things for eye-candy (glass walls? neon signage? maybe even a small fountain or some central statues or monuments?).
I have trouble imagining how to create the block flexibility to allow building an "infinitely" (yeah, I know) different number of these environments, while still keeping the granularity of your block set large enough to make building relatively quick and easy, as in TM.
That's one thing I love about making TM tracks; it doesn't take days or weeks or even months, like making a modern shooter level. You can make something very cool in an evening, and have fast iteration and no compile time. I hope we don't lose the quick flexibility combined with awesome variation that TM has when SM and QM are relased.