An idea to get things rolling

Go down

An idea to get things rolling

Post  MitchRichardson on Mon Jul 04, 2011 6:17 am

Genre: A hybrid of action and tower defence
The core idea: You are an engineer, tasked with protecting a shipment of cargo to its delivery point.
The core mechanics:
- You control the engineer to place towers and keep them running
- You must protect your shipment as it makes its way across the map without losing too much cargo from varying enemies
- As per most tower defence games, you will have access to a multitude of different towers/turrets with varying abilities
- Building towers requires a resource that will be harvested from points placed on the maps
- This same resource will be nessicary to keep the towers running and functional
- A skill system will be implemented to make tasks that you regularily perform faster or easier as the game progresses to counter the increasing difficulty of the levels

Few additional details: The setting of the game is relatively unimportant. It works in many scenarios with creative thinking. Examples: Crashed space ship on alien planet, getting crew to safety, some form of gas readily available on planet. Sailing cargo across an open ocean filled with pirates, resources floating about from other previously pilfered vessels. Driving through ghost town protecting tour bus that took a wrong turn, use abandoned gas stations for resources.

As you can see, the core idea is here. I can't wait to hear some of your thoughts on one of my many ideas. As always, keep your critisim constructive and positive. Point out what works, and what does not.

Since we are working in a limited time frame, I want everyone to have their ideas posted on this board by Friday July 8th. Im hoping to have a poll up on Friday evening where we can vote on which idea we will progress forward with, and have a solid conclusion by Monday of next week. Majority vote winner will be chosen for our project, so make your ideas innovative, interesting, and creative. Also, you may post more than one idea if you choose to.

Cheers everyone, and let's formally begin this project!
avatar
MitchRichardson
Admin

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 30
Location : Halifax

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  eschermond on Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:05 am

I think Tower Defense (or defence for my neighbor to the north) is a good place for a young dev team to start. It's easy because the mechanics are relatively straight-forward, and we don't have worry about setting the world on fire trying to invent new game engines or anything.

Having said that, I do think that we can set ourselves apart and be innovative with something as "relatively unimportant" as the setting. Plants Vs. Zombies was hugely successful due in part to the comedy of it's setting. Here's a few ideas that I've come up with, after reading Mitch's post.

    1. Internal Organs being protected from diseases
    2. A band on stage being protected from crazed fans
    3. National Monuments being protected from terrorists


Being that the project is going toward a good cause, it might be possible for us to contact a band or musician to use their music if we decide to go with idea #2. These are obviously just preliminary ideas, though. Again, I'm not trying to set the world on fire. I'm sure I'll come up with some more ideas as the day goes on, and could work towards fleshing out any of these ideas, if they sound appealing.
avatar
eschermond

Posts : 9
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 41
Location : New Jersey

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  MitchRichardson on Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:37 am

Just wanted to clear something up in my previous post that escher pointed out. I didn't mean that the setting as a whole was unimportant. The aesthetics and setting of a game are vital to the overall feel I agree. I just meant that in regards to the mechanics I described in my idea, the setting wasn't important. Just that they could fit in a variety of scenarios, and there wasn't one specifically chosen for it.
avatar
MitchRichardson
Admin

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 30
Location : Halifax

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  DoctorRheet on Mon Jul 04, 2011 8:40 am

You say it's an action-tower-defense hybrid. Do you mean that you'll be able to control your character by letting the player run around and attack enemies too? That could be interesting. While you can always upgrade your units in tower defense games, I think it would be great to be able to upgrade your character too, unlock new weapons, etc. It would be a bit difficult to balance, but it's an idea.

Maybe make enemies be able to attack towers. I'm not sure if anyone's played League of Legends, but it has an interesting mechanic where there's giant, high powered, slow-firing turrets. You have to get tons of AI bots to take the turret's fire while you run up and attack it. It could work the opposite way in an action-TD as well, forcing you not just to build as many towers as possible, but to make sure they aren't destroyed.

Balance it out by having units with a weak attack but rapid fire rate, have a tower with high damage but slow fire rate. Make the players more concerned about wasting their currency by letting a tower be destroyed than the only time they feel pressure being when the towers are gone and enemies are attacking the base. I assume in an action-TD it would be important to place your towers wherever. I'm thinking of it being a top-down game.
Just my two cents.
avatar
DoctorRheet

Posts : 41
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 22
Location : Alabama

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  eschermond on Mon Jul 04, 2011 8:57 am

This makes sense to me. In the example I gave before of a band on stage defending against crazed fans (don't think I'm trying to push this idea, but I do think it's pretty neat and I would play it), the TD aspect of the game could be the band playing music while defending. Attacks could be things like Amplifier Feedback, Thrown Drumsticks, Water Bottles, etc.

In between "gigs" you could "level up" each member of the band by having them practice their instrument, getting scary tattoos to keep fans from attacking, etc. It could incorporate aspects of a rhythm game, possibly an art/drawing game a la Scribblenauts.

Just an idea.
avatar
eschermond

Posts : 9
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 41
Location : New Jersey

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  DoctorRheet on Mon Jul 04, 2011 9:45 am

Scribblenauts wasn't an art or drawing game, though. The key mechanic was writing words to make an object appear to solve puzzles. And while I think the band thing would be a neat idea, it would feel too much like an advertisement, imo. I also feel rock music has become a huge cliché in gaming, like how the 90s were all about X-TREME sports. I love metal though.
But yeah, focus on mechanics before the theme.
With the action TD, I was thinking making the player control like in a top-down shooter. I'm not sure melee would work so well.
avatar
DoctorRheet

Posts : 41
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 22
Location : Alabama

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  Nina on Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:29 pm

Idea: (I know you wanted to think of mechanics before theme, so feel free to take or ditch any mechanics and/or the idea)
Core idea: You are a guy smuggling harvested/lab-grown human organs... by getting them implanted inside yourself
Core mechanics: (all general tower defense mechanics)
- having to go from point B (start) to point C (finish) while enemies are coming out of point A, heading toward the player (eg. going between the airport and hospital, flying between hospital cities, etc)
- between B and C there's stationary enemies that you have to destroy before you can pass them
- enemies will be attacking your towers in addition to you (the towers would be your hired enemies in crime, equipped with various weapons?)
- enemies will have varying amounts of HP and varying attacks but also varying amounts of ability to get you in trouble (a local police officer vs. an FBI agent)
- player can attack enemies, but has to be stay range of them rather than going further away
- player can choose how many organs to take with him, but more organs will slow down your body and may cause death by too much stress to your heart/lungs; he can also pay for body upgrades and upgrades to his spaceship/other vehicle of choice

I really like the idea of being able to control the player while being attacked. The more interactivity, the better—I hate how helpless/boring some games can get while the enemies are slowly being paraded through.
avatar
Nina

Posts : 10
Join date : 2011-07-03

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  DoctorRheet on Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:32 pm

lyris wrote:I really like the idea of being able to control the player while being attacked. The more interactivity, the better—I hate how helpless/boring some games can get while the enemies are slowly being paraded through.
This is my main complaint with RTS/TD games. Then again, I hardly play any. But yeah, action is always appreciated.
Not sure I like the theme, but I like the idea of having to take something and bring it back somewhere, with the more you carry weighing you down. It sets up a nice risk/reward scenario. This is me being as vague as possible, but a glorified game of capture the flag could be a great deal of fun with RTS elements.
As far as enemies with varying attacks, I think it'd be better to limit each unit to one attack. That way, the player can think ahead ("Alright, I see these types of enemies coming, they do this attack. To counter this, I should put this here.")
One problem I see with the type of CTF thing is that it wouldn't work well as a tower defense. I could see this best working if you have freindly AI units to send out that can advance with you, rather than stationary turrets.
avatar
DoctorRheet

Posts : 41
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 22
Location : Alabama

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  MitchRichardson on Mon Jul 04, 2011 6:46 pm

One problem I see with the type of CTF thing is that it wouldn't work well as a tower defense. I could see this best working if you have freindly AI units to send out that can advance with you, rather than stationary turrets.

I had thought of this as well, and the particular work around I was thinking of was something along these lines.

- The cargo (Whatever themed vehicle/transportation device is moving across the maps) would have a limited area to place a few towers/turrets/whatever you want to call the defensive devices. These would be attached to said cargo and move throughout the map with it.
- Additional stationary towers could also be placed, but would be made as throwaway towers. Think mines/traps/slowing devices/walls/etc.
These would be obviously less costly to produce then the upgradable and main defense points attached to your cargo, which would function as your main defense.
- Of course in addition to running around gathering resources and placing these devices, you would be attempting to wear down your attackers as well.

All of these points keep the core idea of a strategic tower defense core game, but implement some innovative action elements to keep things fast paced and interesting. Also note, enemies would not be walking across a set path or road, the cargo would. Enemies would be spawning from random areas around the sides of the screen/map, and following the cargo to attack it based on coded AI. This also gives us the chance to make some interesting levels, developing strategic spots to place particular defense points to increase chances of success.
avatar
MitchRichardson
Admin

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 30
Location : Halifax

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  DoctorRheet on Mon Jul 04, 2011 9:23 pm

I think the CTF idea is straying a bit too far from the idea of Tower Defense, and would work better as a normal RTS. Maybe I'm not envisioning it correctly, but it seems a bit clumsy to throw tower defense into a game about protecting something that's position is constantly changing.

I think TD should be about strategically placing towers, which honestly, most TD games don't do -- they limit you to place towers in certain spots. Have predictable enemy patterns in terms of movement, and let the player see what type of enemy units are approaching which areas (minimap?), and allow them think, "This would be the best unit to put here, I can use these two here, and I'll be by this weaker turret over here to attack." Maybe have the CTF thing for bonuses: you could get more currency/points if you go to the side of the map close to the enemy's spawn, take whatever it is, and make it safely to your base, only the more you carry back slows you down. Maybe have even larger bonus that, when picked up, disable all of your character's attacks and slows them down. When would you win? I guess after surviving so many waves, or making it an endlessly replayable arcade-style game.

Also, when you say the cargo is on a set path, do you basically mean make it an escort mission, sort of like TF2's payload mode?

Also also, I dig the idea of having mines/traps.
avatar
DoctorRheet

Posts : 41
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 22
Location : Alabama

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  John on Mon Jul 04, 2011 9:39 pm

Just to make the game a little more challenging

-You have to replenish fuel or ammo
-There's more than 1 thing to protect each time you go to the next level
-Enemies resistance to certain attacks
-Every now and then some enemy which is rare but gives you that "incentive" to kill it as soon as you can

John

Posts : 3
Join date : 2011-07-03

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  SushiGummy/GeorgeBoden on Tue Jul 05, 2011 5:05 am

Are we for sure sticking with tower defense? Or should I post ideas for other possible genres as well?

Here are a few of my thoughts relating to this particular idea:


- Most flash tower defense games just give you a store where you buy power-ups in-between levels, but I'm thinking it should go a bit deeper than that. Maybe have enemies drop weapons which cannot be bought, or have certain challenges for each level (such as beating the level under a certain time limit) to get rare items or power-ups.

- Maybe there should be points throughout the game where you have to choose between two new weapons, possibly with different endings or alternate game routes depending on your choices? Of course, if this were the case, the weapon choice would have to relate to the story someway or another (which wouldn't be hard, just something to keep in mind).

- One thing we could do to make the game harder as it goes on is to give the player new tools which they will need to beat further levels. Maybe have a tool that surrounds the mouse with a circle, and have everything in the circle move either more slowly or quickly? Or a square that surrounds the mouse which horizontally mirrors anything inside it? In addition to giving the player more room for new strategies, it would also allow us to incorporate puzzles within the levels. In addition, if we were to make these puzzles work just right, we could have it so that each puzzle has several solutions, in order to essentially let the player invent their own way of solving it. An example could be reversing an enemy who's shooting a laser to the left in order to hit some sort of switch to the right. Mixing the tower defense genre with the puzzle genre could definitely work out.

- We could have different terrains or areas throughout the game, each offering a new and unique approach to the gameplay. For example, maybe some kind of magnet-related terrain which makes all machinery less effective? Or a ground terrain which makes the cargo and enemies move more slowly?

- Along with weapons, items, machines, and all that, we could also have some kind of partner system. Instead of just having one engineer running around taking care of everything, you can hire more engineers, fighters, maybe even enemies, to do some of your jobs for you so that you can focus on the more important obstacles during very hectic levels. Heck, along with hiring people, we could even have certain partners simply join you, similar to the partner system in Fire Emblem games.

- If we're going with this cargo cart escort idea, I'm thinking the cart should be customizable. The player would have the ability to attach a certain number of machines to it, which could attack or defend against enemies. Maybe there could be a weight system, where the cart will move more slowly when more weight is added to it.

- Personally, I think a leveling system would work if it wasn't too complicated. Instead of having attack/defense/speed/whatever upgrade whenever you level up, it'd simply be something like "You can't build/upgrade/buy this machine until you're level 10." I'm not saying a complicated leveling system wouldn't work, but it could be a turn off for players who just want to play a simple tower defense game. I personally find it hard to get into a game that gets too complicated with stats.


Anyways, that's everything I can offer for now. I'm kinda tired right at the moment, so hopefully I'll be able to come up with even better ideas tomorrow. As for the story/setting/theme, I honestly don't think it's a good idea to come up with one right now. If we wait until we have verification on how the game will play and what sort of features it'll include, I think we'd be able to come up with a few better themes and stories simply because we'll have a better idea about how the game will play.
avatar
SushiGummy/GeorgeBoden

Posts : 22
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 26

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  MitchRichardson on Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:17 am

I agree with with pretty much everything you say Sushi. You have some very innovative ideas if we end up going with this genre. And to answer your first question, no, we're are not for sure sticking with tower defense. You can post any idea you wish on the idea board and I'm encouraging it as there will be a vote at the end of the week for our final decision. I'm actually kind of disappointed in the lack of personal ideas right now. Almost everyone I talked to when starting this said they had great ideas to express, but no one has put anything up yet. This isn't to say your not giving good ideas and criticism to my personal idea, but I would also like to see what you guys want to make as well.

This was just one of my ideas for the project. Also, yes, no particular theme or story is going to be chosen until we have our final genre/mechanics/gameplay aspects laid out. It's much more easy to incorporate a theme and story around the gameplay then trying to work the other way.
avatar
MitchRichardson
Admin

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 30
Location : Halifax

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  DoctorRheet on Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:59 am

Question: Should we being trying to keep the game simple? All of the ideas are great, but I think we should choose just a few of these mechanics and combine them.

Also, I'd like to see some other ideas as well. I can't think of anything.
avatar
DoctorRheet

Posts : 41
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 22
Location : Alabama

View user profile

Back to top Go down

A couple ideas...

Post  eschermond on Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:16 am

Here's a couple I just thought of, they're just rough ideas I want to get out before my kids scream them out of my head:

Zombie apocalypse scenario. Player is trapped in his house and has to find a way to survive increasing number of zombies. Player can have stats like strength, hunger, thirst, fatigue. Player will have to venture from his house in order to find things like food, water, weapons, etc. in order to survive. Stats such as stealth, speed, intelligence could be upgraded in order for the player to venture out and find items from nearby houses. Object could be to survive for a set amount of time, leaving the player open to choose whether he wants to fight the zombies or just survive in his home. Each day, the player would be forced to rest in order to replenish the "Fatigue" stat; find "Food" to replenish the "Hunger" stat, etc. While in his house, Player will have to move about carefully, as making too much noise could alert the zombies to his presence, increasing the chance for attack. Another stat could be "Noise Level" or something along those lines.

Patient Zero Scenario Player is the first person to be infected by a disease that threatens to wipe out the entire population. It's up to the player to not only survive and try to find a cure, but also avoid infecting as many people as he can. Everyday medicines like aspirin or cough medicine could have positive effects but would not cure the play completely. In addition, their effects would diminish each time they are used. Player would have to make his way from the point of infection to the single person who can cure him. Setting could be a populous city/area, making the avoidance of infecting others more difficult. Infecting innocent citizens would have an adverse affect on score and status (think Karma in Fallout), but infection could also be used against enemies in a positive fashion.


Like I said, just rough ideas. I would be willing to flesh them out a little more if anyone is interested.
avatar
eschermond

Posts : 9
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 41
Location : New Jersey

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  John on Tue Jul 05, 2011 8:00 pm

My idea would be a game with a good storyline, you get to choose what are you going to do or say so things will change according with the choices you make, for this we need a good writer, some character designers, etc. It is simple and it can be really entertaining as we can make the player get interested until the very end. If there's someone with a good story but never got the chance to get it out here's your chance.

John

Posts : 3
Join date : 2011-07-03

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  brycehalda on Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:51 pm

I really like the "protect the band" idea as well as the "protect the cargo". But for the "protect the band" idea, it could be that the fans are going to get to the stage with no set path, unless you funnel them with your towers (kind of like desktop tower defense). And the more you advance, it opens another entrance after a few levels, then it gets harder, then another entrance, then harder again. I don't know if that's how desktop tower defense works, I didn't play too much and it was awhile ago (I'm not trying to revamp desktop defense with a new scenario and layout, but i like how its set up)

brycehalda

Posts : 13
Join date : 2011-07-05
Age : 23
Location : Spring Hill, Kansas

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  MitchRichardson on Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:14 am

unless you funnel them with your towers (kind of like desktop tower defense).

I'm glad you brought this up. You may disagree with me, but the whole reason of a moving cargo target was to avoid this situation at all costs. This is the formula of Desktop Tower Defense, as well as many others that you can find on WC3 custom maps. My reason for avoiding this is not only has it been done many times, but everyone who is well versed in them, like myself, knows to just labyrinth your towers into a maze. This becomes extremely tedious and boring once you figure it out. It completely takes away any action aspects as you just build a larger maze, and if enemies get close to the end, make it bigger. You become an observer to whats happening later in the game and rarely feel involved. A moving cargo target would automatically crush any chance of you being able to make this maze, and instead make you place defenses across key areas of the map.

This isn't to say that people won't be able to try to maze off of map choke points, but why would they when another spawn point will be approached shortly after which they will need to have defenses set up for as well? Mazing will be not any help to the player in these situations. That was originally why I had come up with this concept.
avatar
MitchRichardson
Admin

Posts : 23
Join date : 2011-07-03
Age : 30
Location : Halifax

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: An idea to get things rolling

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum