Nick Urko's Portfolio


Team Size:
Production Time:

Level Designer
UDK (June 2011)
16 weeks (15 hrs / week)
20-60 minutes



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Download Documentation


Arbor is a gloomy, enchanting, atmospheric 2D side-scrolling puzzle platformer with playable foreground and background zones set within the ruined Temple of the Arbor Goddess. Whatever civilization once created the massive structure has long since perished. To rejuvenate her ruined temple, the Goddess brings to life the last of a legion of tiny clay figures carved to serve her. This humble servant, simply called Votive, must brave the wastes now overrun with Dark Miasma, crumbling architecture, and corrupt creatures. He must gather and transport Sacred Bulbs to the plots of Hallowed Soil that still remain in the Temple. Only then can the Bulbs sprout and flourish, and the Goddess restore life to her quickly failing world.

Arbor boasts a dark and spooky feel rendered in stylized realism. The Temple Grounds are enormous and create an intimidating atmosphere. Players feel alone and overwhelmed by both the sadness of the Temple and the beauty that must once have been.

My Responsibilities

Kismet and Scripting Integration

I was in charge of kismet and scripting integration for this project. I made a variety of prototype kismet objects for our design team to work with early in the project, and then helped integrate the final components into the game when they were completed.


This is the temporary Door object from Arbor.  It was replaced later in the project, but it served its purpose of letting the Design team get in and work early in the project life-cycle.

UDK's Special Tools

I used many of UDKs special tools to create interesting gameplay scenarios.


Fracture Tool

I used the fracture tool to make sections with exploding pillars.


When an RB_RadialImpulseActor is set off near one of these fractured meshes, the fragments are sent flying, revealing a new path to the player.

Physics Asset Tool

Physics Assets work together with animation data to get smooth animations.


Basic physics assets were created so the enemies would animate properly.

Physics Constraints and Physical Materials

I created some physics platforms that were used throughout the game.  More information on how I did this can be found here.


Waterwheels are the most complicated object, made of several meshes and constraints to get it working correctly.

The Cloister

I was the chief designer in charge of The Cloister, one of the three levels in Arbor.


The Cloister is a dark level within the Temple, and has many challenges for Votive to overcome.


Full Playthrough Videos

The Narthex

The Cloister

The Gardens

Final Cutscene


Game Maps

The Narthex

The Temple Hub

The Cloister

The Gardens