Thursday, January 14, 2010
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
I added the stat 'corruption' - this is similar to a regular timezones Integrity stat- only for the Debris instead of timelines. Shattered timelines revitalize this stat which otherwise has a natural decay.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
It is always now, everything is happening now. - the structure of time
For this concept one must think of time in terms of a spread sheet, where the rows represent various time events that a player can enter and manipulate, and the columns represent the Players time, past, present, and future. For Example:
Each color here reflects an individual timeline. Players can only effect what is in their present.
Each cell would contain three types of data: Causality State, Player Data, and Time line Integrity.
Causality State represents the state of historical progression, i.e. outcomes of important battles, political assasinations, election results, etc.
Player Data represents data specific to a player, i.e. hidden caches of diamonds/gold/weapons, secret cabals of followers, hidden island establishments, gambling events with player known outcomes.
Time Line Integrity - a timeline can only endure so much interference. Everytime a player manipulates a timeline they are further degrading its integrity to varying degrees based on the type of interference. A healthy timeline will gradually recover some of its integrity. When a timeline reaches a critically low level it is open to destruction from various mobs and players, destroyed timelines then become part of the debris, they no longer progress and are completely open to looting.
Begining with Death
The way I envisioned this game, things should not be clear to the player from the begining but revealed over the game's progression (with some possible bypasses, not sure).
You would start the game by generating your character, in something that had the feel of an online survey: Name, age, sex, maritial status, occupation, location.
A huge amount of options would be great, but whatever. The point is to create a normal person who would exist in the real world. Some starting stats could be based on occupation and it would be really cool to have some story elements based on this begining information.
I might get back to this depending on how far I take this design, it's still only semi-formed here.
You would then begin the game by dieing during the collapse of a timeline. The two could be linked, say you were slaughtered by void worms ripping through reality or blown-up by a paradox triggered hydrogen bomb (kind of an ultimate weapon for player initiated timeline destruction). But it could also be that you were just killed at the same time as the timeline destruction took place, mob execution, car accident, accident at the home. This places you in The Debris. I also considered some other names for the debris: the Bardo, Purgatory, Meta-time, the Void, the Underworld - I think having multiple names and descriptions will add to the Lore of the game world. What your character's initial experience would be though is either looking at their own corpse in the environment they died in, or a randomly generated non descript place, kind of similar to a room escape puzzle, if anyone has read the book Dream Science this is the feel I'm going for.
Initial levels will be simply learning to navigate in the Debris. It is a mish mash of all types of fractured realities with hostile natives of the outer void combing over them for sustenance, much like yourself. You'll collect weapons, armor, strength and skills, and gradually learn to access living timelines. Dieing in the debris, basicly places you in a new random place in the debris, possibly with low health and minus any belongings you had gathered.
There are several ways to access the living timelines and characters may consider it science or magic, but there is never a clear cut decisive answer on how things work or why. There are only theories and viewpoints, and what can actually be done. Timelines can only be entered at specific fracture points and only for the length of that fracture but once there players can travel to different locations find the outcomes of there previous interference and so on.
A player can enter a timeline through the possesion of an avatar within the timeline or physically. Physical entrance creates far greater degradation to the timelines integrity. Possesion requires a certain level of psi ability and a possessible avatar - at first you might only be able to access drug addicts, religious devotees, coma patients; but as you progress you might be able to possess military leaders or politicians, IDK.
anyway thats it for now.
- Run - Energy 5 - Mind 2 - Exp 2 - success 74%
- Attack - Energy 7 - Mind 3 - Exp 5 - success 68%
- Hide - Energy 1 - Mind 4 - Exp 4 - success 48%
Monday, October 5, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
What is already out there:
In Mount and Blade their were a group of companion characters which I found very interesting. You needed to find them at different locations and have sufficient money and leadership skills to convince them to join your group. Once they joined you could give them any equipment you desired. As they leveled you could choose how to distribute their skill points. They were interesting, when you ventured near their hometown they would give you a little back story about themselves or the town. If their morale fell they would complain about certain other members of your party or reversely compliment certain others. If their morale fell too low they would leave your group taking any equipment you gave them with them. Eventually you might be able to find them again somewhere new.
The game oblivion included a little mini-game in which you could try complimenting, joking, intimidating, or something else I don't remember, to get NPCs to like you. This was important for obtaining quest information or getting better deals from merchants, there were also numerous escort quests like so many games at one point they also had follower characters such as a mercenary that could follow a few basic instructions (attack with magic/attack with melee/etc.) similar to pets in many games.
There are several MMO games out currently that allow you to level specific character skills while offline through the use of "jobs" (I believe EVE online, and City of Heroes are a couple of examples of this). Mortal Online has passive learning skills "skills learned by studying a book" or similar but only while online.
Another interesting game in development, the Secret World, has had different puzzles revealing tidbits of information (Mortal Online did a bit of this as well with their timer background images). Its just another example of offline gameplay that could be looked at.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
This game would have to be single player or multi-player and I have some ideas on how it could be a persistant sandbox multi-player game based on a Game Master set-up, but I'll get to that later.
The main point of this game is that you are a brownie a tiny roughly 5" man or woman who has a number of possible mounts but the focus will be on squirrels. You will have an army (again like Mount and Blade) and you and your squirrel mounted army ride through the forest conquering different tree-based castles.
This means there is a lot of climbing and jumping between branches. Thin branches would bend with your weight, if they were 'green' they might give you extra bounce, dry they might break. Unlike Mirrors edge however falling is unlikely to kill you. A particularly bad fall might result in some damage, but usually the main reprecusion is that you are not where you want to be in the battle.
There could be a number of other types of possible mounts, most notably aerial mounts- sparrows, hawks, falcons, owls, bats (these last two would have bonuses for night battles). In aerial combat foliage is a big problem, smaller birds can more easily make their way through it than larger birds. It is also important to note that all mounts should require care and feeding so owning a hawk would be great for taking out sparrows but also very expensive. - I've also been toying with the idea that your charisma might take a hit for owning a predator (not sure).
I wanted the game to be focused on seiges, but also have features that are simply impossible to acheive in an MMO. This and some of the conversation in the seige warning thread brought me to the conclusion that it would need to be multi-player. However I don't want it be that you log in for a session and then log-out and that session is done. I wanted a persistant game world that develops with your character. This made me think of the advantage that many Pen and paper rpg's had that I know of no computer games having- a dungeon (game) master.
I would want the Game Master to be necessary for any multi-player session. The primary duty of this person would be to get a number of people together , set the hours of gameplay and create the game world. Whether they play too or just created PvE events or whatever would be entirely up to them. They would be setting the rules and the lay of the land though so if they set it up giving themselves a huge advantage and then played PvP style they probably wouldn't keep their group for long.
Some of things a GM should be able to do:
1.)set game time - all characters are persistent within this time frame (perhaps AI orders set by players if they are not logged in)
2.)create the world map - I envision an interface of a giant map and nodes that could be used for procedural creation of the game map. this would include placing all Tree types, NPC spawn points, streams, cliffs etc. The GM would place a stream node for example and the engine would then render the stream according to how it would run down hill on the terrain, place a tree variety node and that tree will propogate based on sun, water, soil and competeing tree nodes. This could get quite complex and I don't know how well it could be implemented but I've seen some very interesting videos on the subject that give me hope.
3.) set rules:
Full loot/partial loot?
4.) set-up NPC encounters and spawn points
this could include questing options
I would love to hear constructive critiques. If your a game developer please feel free to steal all my ideas as I will never really make this, I just think about these things alot.
A lack of PUG would be the death of such a game, as I imagine the best longest running games will indeed be closed. Here are some ideas I had on minimizing this possibility:
1) Single Player->Multi-player transitioning- When playing in Single Player mode have a PUG wanted chat window displayable (on-toggle) that way you can be scanning and playing at the same time. Also allow for Single Player character import into multi-player games, with a GM decided handicap/boost to level playing field among players.
2)Standard Mode- this would basicly be a standard pvp set-up where all the GM is really doing is setting the game hours and perhaps selecting from several pre-created maps. This would work well if you want to establish yourself as a GM but know one knows or trusts you yet or if you really just want to play your character and not worry about anyone shouting hey no fair you cant play PvP and be the GM.
3.) Community Support - Some things to make forums work well would include an indepth rep system with 'badges' those mini-icons under your avatar kind of like the Escapist forums has. These would be rewarded based on various things: Post count, positive rep, negative rep, GM, established GM, RPer, PvP master, Mod-user, Mod-team, Mod creator, etc.
The last bit makes me want to add that I would like the game to be extremely mod friendly and have mod support. This is one of the strengths you can gain in multi-player when you make the unfortunate sacrifice of the massive.
I think the GM-based multi-player format concept actually has more legs in itself than the setting I've come up with. I think many people would enjoy just some straight up AD&D style action under this set-up.
Humans: To a six inch brownie a six foot tall human would appear to be 12 times there size, imagine a 72' giant. Brownies will not be encountering legions of knights, what I might be willing to include is a single human woodsman or peasant farmer family. They would be epic sized quests to drive them off or steal their food. Strategies for driving them off might include trying to make some family members think one of them is crazy, or that their house is haunted, poison their supplies, or if you feel brave and have a large enough army just attack. I could see them as fighting you with things like a wooden spoon or their shoe.
I think bees/beehives would make a good tree castle upgrade - supply your troops honey and add protection to the tree.
Another bird mount I want is the humming bird. Very low weight capacity/armor/health, high maintenance cost, but has ability to hover and is lightening fast. Good Sniper mount.