Moveset Reworks
Refining Gameplay Identities across the game's roster

Content Update
Design & Implementation

About 5 months into my time working on Rushdown, I was tasked with planning and overseeing mid-scale reworks for the game's entire roster (8 characters at the time). The project was set on a ridiculously tight deadline, and involved working with numerous stakeholders ranging from players to upper management.

At this point in time, Rushdown was still finding its identity amidst the many ideas that had been implemented in an attempt to distinguish the game from its predecessor, Icons. While numerous mechanical changes had been made to systems and individual moves, none of the characters had really been looked at in a holistic manner. A lot of vestigial design choices from Icons remained that no longer made sense in the context of the game that Rushdown had become.

On top of this, a particular piece of feedback had been recurring across playtests -- "The characters all play the same". The powerful universal systems in Rushdown on top of the lack of cohesion in characters' movesets led to an environment where characters all relied on the same set of underlying stategies and gameplay patterns to succeed.

In order to remedy both of these related issues, I wrote up a project pitch that involved many mid-scale reworks to characters from a more top-down perspective. I dubbed this project a "gameplay identity rework", and after some discussion it was greenlit by management.
Ashani's "Phaze" mechanic can be used to teleport a short distance during the startup of certain attacks. This allowed us to double down on her identity as a quick, snappy character in a game where everyone has access to impressive movement options.
A gif mockup I made for an alternative mechanic that would allow Ashani to feint certain attacks. We eventually scrapped this idea because we felt that feints didn't provide enough direct power for a character's signature mechanic.
Urdah's "Cargo Rush" allows her to dash while carrying a grabbed opponent. This was a riff on a similar mechanic that Donkey Kong has in Smash Bros, but desigend to incorporate the game's signature "rush" mechanic.
Raymer was given a bullet resource for his projectiles, along with new moves that allowed him to use bullets in creative ways.

His side-special, pictured here, allows him to spend one, two, or three bullets to perform different moves depending on the input used.