In Overgrowth we are trying to make the world feel like it has a real history. The different animal races have been around for a long time and there is a lot of litter left from past groups that have died out or moved on. In addition to abandoned habitations, we have some more mysterious ruins, such as these monoliths. The idea for the monoliths came from the blocks in Lugaru which were used to make huge structures that were really epic.
In updating the blocks we had to make them a bit more realistic-- not just perfect cubes. One of the ways I did this is to make broken variations of the objects. These were designed to be able to be combined to make a lot of unique-looking structures, like the parts used for buildings.
We didn't have to keep these large cube-things for Overgrowth, but for me it was an important part of what made the world unique and interesting. As the artist on Overgrowth I want people to be able to know exactly what game they are looking at from a single screenshot, even if they are not very familiar with video games.
The other great thing about the monoliths is that they follow their own rules, and so they can be placed in a level in ways that wouldn't make sense with other objects. This opens up a lot of gameplay options. I posted some concept art with some level ideas, but now I am actually making them in the engine.
There are a lot of possibilities for different categories of monoliths that offer up new types of gameplay. This is just scratching the surface.