Combat Game Designer at Don’t Nod Entertainment


Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden is an A-RPG developped by Don’t Nod Entertainment and published by Focus Entertainment released in 2024.

The game mainly showcases its story and the difficult decisions it asks the player to do. It also had a strong focus on Combat to convey the story and difficulties in an interesting manner.

I had the opportunity to join the Banishers’s team in 2022 and work for a year in the Combat Game Design team.

During this time, I was able to work on 2 different subjects:

  • Boss design :  I designed and implemented improvements on attacks, combat rythm and staging of 2 main bosses
  • 3C : I had a few 3C subjets in charge and helped with integration and balancing.

Boss Design

The Beast

The Beast is the game’s first Boss, it’s a more action-focused Boss.

Integrating new attacks

To give the Beast a complete set of varied attacks. I integrated new attacks or updated pre-existing ones.

In order to implement an attack fully, I integrated its animation and VFX as well as placed accurate and interesting time-windows for the player (hit frames, vulnerability/invulnerability, anticipation and releases, break to and from each attacks)

Improving pace

The Beast is really an action-focused Boss, more than other Bosses in the game who are more puzzly so giving it a snappy pace was a must.

To achieve this, I tweaked the Boss’s passive behavior, as well as its cooldowns and the order and frequency of its attacks.

I also tweaked which attacks would be present, at which rate regarding each phases of the Boss.

Improving signs & feedbacks

I also worked on suggestion to improve the lisibility of the Beast’s attacks and integrated them (special VFX, special lock points, barks).

I also worked with lighting and environment artists to make sure the arena was suitable and interesting for the fight, while maintaining staging directions.


The Puppeteer on the other hand is a more puzzle-based Boss with a specific behavior in which the player has to find and hit its weakpoints during specific time windows.

Integrating attacks

Just like for the Beast, I implemented and later improved the attacks of the Puppeteer by integrated animations, VFX and time-windows (appearance of VFX, hit frames, vulnerability, invulnerabilty…)

Improving pace

Since the Puppeteer is very puzzle-based, I made sure each phase of the Puppeteer was built upon the knowledge of the player at each moment.

So the first phase is relatively easy with a few easy to see weakpoints and they progressely get more hidden and hard to get as well as the initial attacks get faster, bigger and more numerous. I also added more intense, specific attacks in each phase.

Improving signs & feedbacks

Since the weak-point mechanic can be a bit tricky, the signs for it needed to be really clear. I worked with VFX artists to accentuate the weak points as well as their behavior (i.e. pulsating when they can be destroyed).

For the Puppeteer staging, I also had to work closely with environment and lighting artists, together we made sure that everything made sense in the arena.



The Rifle mechanic was challenging because it needed to be executed both in and out of Combat, with different constraints as well as be historically accurate.

It was a strong attack for the player but was disregarded in playtests because it was too difficult and unintuitive to use.

Therefore, I suggested and integrated improvements in : 

  • Behavior (controls, acceleration, soft and hard locking enemies, accuracy)
  • Pace (faster animation, easier to break from and to another attack)
  • Signs (reload UI, availability, ability to see enemies while in rifle stance)

Antea & Red synergy

To show the bond between the two main characters, we wanted to make sure it shined in Combat with the synergy between them.

Therefore, I integrated energetic passive attacks, made them easier to see and more impactful through camera effects and balancing.

I also worked on the « Switch » between the characters to make it easier and more reactive through timings and chainable attacks.

I also worked on balancing to encourage players to use the combat system in its depths.