Procedural art for game ‘Hellbound' - An Interview with Catinca Matei

Procedural art for game ‘Hellbound' - An Interview with Catinca Matei

09/19/2023 - 14:40

It was a pleasure talking to Catinca Matei, a third-year Creative Media & Game Technologies (Visual Arts track) student who worked on the game ‘Hellbound’. In this interview, Catinca shares insights about the development process, her role as a technical artist in the project, and her future plans within the world of procedural art and game development.
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Can you tell us something about the game you worked on?  

Catinca: ‘Certainly! "Hellbound" is a top-down action game. The game revolves around a Fallen Angel that broke free from the Chains of Damnation. Playing as the Fallen Angel it is your mission to redeem yourself by using the very chains used to tie you down to destroy the souls of the most dangerous Lords of Hell. Players navigate through a series of different levels, featuring a boss battle with multiple phases. We drew inspiration from the game “Hades”.’ 

‘It was a unique project for our year, being the sole game designed for PlayStation 5 (also available on PC).’ 

You can play ‘Hellbound' on:  

What was your role in developing the game?  

Catinca: ‘My primary role in developing "Hellbound" revolved around procedural level generation. We created the game from scratch. During the early stages of my second year, I embarked on a personal project to create a level generator using Houdini. My task in the game's development was to enhance and adapt this generator to seamlessly integrate with our custom game engine. Additionally, I served as a link between our programmers and artists, facilitating the smooth integration of art assets into the game engine.’ 

What did the development process look like for 'Hellbound'?  

Catinca: ‘The development process for the game engine, the level generator and the game itself spanned the entire second year of our study programme. Our team consisted of 17 people, including programmers, artists, and designers. Collaboration was a key theme in our journey, and while there were initial communication challenges, we eventually found our rhythm and became a close-knit team.’ 

‘Throughout the development journey, we gathered feedback, both internally and during the showcase industry event in July 2023. We received positive feedback from industry professionals who were impressed by the technological aspects of the game, including the custom engine and procedural level generation.' 

What are your future plans? 

Catinca: ‘Procedural art is a passion that I am eager to pursue further. My journey into this field began with art as a hobby and basic C++ coding courses during high school. Combining the two has been very fulfilling. Tech art offers the best of both worlds, and I intend to continue exploring it. While level generation is a part of it, I'm also interested in other areas. Additionally, I aim to make my level generator available for Unreal Engine.’ 


You can find Catinca’s portfolio on Artstation and connect with her via LinkedIn