Gamesurge have posted another Level Designer Interview, this time with T. Elliot Cannon, who was one of the original level designers on Unreal and is now working on a massively multiplayer broadband only internet world centered around the mythology set in MYST and RIVEN and anchored in D'ni. Heres a quote:
What's lacking in level design today? What can be done to fix that problem?
Actually I think the quality level of level design in products shipped this year shows a tremendous improvement over the previous year. Level designers today are doing much more than geometry, lighting, and monster placement, they are laying out and creating game play and cinematics to tell the story. With this being the case, the only thing truly lacking is grand scale, which is more of a technology issue at this point, rather than a missing skill or ability for all the designers out there. What I mean by this is level design that is on a massive scale rather than a series of maze-locked door levels. I look forward to the day when a single player game takes me across a continent, ocean, or solar system rather than from maze A to maze B.