My fiancée and I started working on a PAC adventure game. The scenario is based on drugs, and the decor is rather fun, with unusual level transitions. These strange transitions have me a little worried and have led me to wonder: is it bad game practice / badly seen by the players to have strange transitions?
Let me give a more descriptive example here. In our game, the starting area is an island. The puzzle of the island is to assemble a machine. when this machine is assembled, it gives off steam and you faint and wake up in a strange hotel. That's what I mean by level transition: moving from an island to a random hotel, and so on. When I consider a game like Dark Souls 1, zone transitions are very fluid; the whole world is like a big block. Again, you have a game like Monkey Island. At Monkey Island, the levels are clearly divided into different areas – from island to island, ship to ship – but the transitions are smooth.
Overall, the summary of my question is: how acceptable is the transition from one level to another? Is it acceptable (this meaning good game design) have strange transitions at all? For the moment, every good game I can think of has good level transitions, but I'm curious to see what the general consensus is. Thank you!