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Making a multi-character game


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#1 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 03:41 PM

I want to make a game, and when i was playing with a software for First Person Shooter games, i had the thought to make a game about a character from a manga that I read and really liked. But the problem was, that the character was not the main character, nor was any one character in the story the center of the story for long. This proposed the idea to make the game about all seven of the main characters. The manga in question is the recently ended manga, Katekyo Hitman Reborn. (I provided the wiki instead of anything else because I felt that you would prefer to just look up information that i don't give you, instead of reading through the entire manga or watching the anime, as you might still get clueless)

 

The manga in question is about a kid and his six friends who get strung up and pulled into a series of adventures involving the mafia. Laughably, the plots themselves rarely involve anything mafia related, and no controversial topics (Prostitution and/or drug trafficking, money laundering, etc.), instead making it just about assassins and gang related violence. But the story itself is good, and I wanted to make an interactive game that gave the player the choice of playing as any one of the seven main characters. 

 

I have a pretty good idea on what to do for some of them, but a major problem I have is with Kyoya Hibari and Ryohei Sasagawa. Ryohei is a problem because not only is his involvement in the story the shortest, but his skill set is also the shortest. His only skill set is healing and boxing, having no weapons/tools to use except for boxing gloves and booster shoes for flying. He does little to nothing in regards to the plot, compared to the rest of them, but his involvement is too great to just leave out. Plus, i feel like if I use the rest of them, and not Ryohei, I might be being mean to a fictional character. 

 

The other problem is with Hibari. Hibari has the second least amount of screen time in the manga, but his performance in the story is the greatest. He is regarded as one of the biggest bad@$$es (Biased opinion) in manga and it would be impossible not to use him. Unfortunately, his fightng style is a mixture of melee combat, and ranged combat, with no guns ever being used around him. He uses tonfas for close combat, and throws spiked hedgehogs that supersize into giant rampaging bulldozers that mow down his enemies. He also gets access to an assortment of secondary weapons, like a super long chain to attack long range with, handcuffs that he uses for an entire fight, he basically uses unconventional weapons all the time. This makes designing game play around him even harder than around Ryohei. 

 

Now, it might be easier to just make him use a tonfa, and maybe swing a chain if you hit the write number of combo hits, but then he starts to feel like Ryohei, as both would just be basically punching the enemy into submission. 

 

What I'm looking for is help in figuring out how to make game play around these guys. I understand that some corners will need to be cut, but i want to figure out the best way to do this, and I can't figure out how to do this best.


Edited by Deathbymanga, 15 January 2013 - 11:26 PM.


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#2 sonicarrow   Members   -  Reputation: 421

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:32 PM

If you haven't played Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, I would highly advise it.  It's an excellent game as is, but also shows a possibility of how to split a game between a number of characters without hindering gameplay.



#3 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 08:58 PM

thank you, i will give it a shot



#4 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 9874

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 09:56 PM

Deathbymanga, you should not make a game based on someone else's characters. You should create your own characters, or you'll have to change your name to Suedbymanga.

http://sloperama.com/advice/faq61.htm


-- Tom Sloper
Sloperama Productions
Making games fun and getting them done.
www.sloperama.com

Please do not PM me. My email address is easy to find, but note that I do not give private advice.

#5 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 11:14 PM

Oh, i was definitely going to try and get the guys opinion. I guess i may have been a little misleading. I am still a student, studying digital media & animation. This means that any idea i want to to, is more an idea i WANT to do. doesn't mean that i have the capabilities of doing it. I am sorry for saying TRYing instead of WANTing, i'll edit that right away. 

 

I felt that the idea of making a game based off of Reborn was perfect because there were so many diverse character fighting styles that game play was sure to stretch to every available one. This means that I would have a chance to explore all the different styles of game play and see were my forte laid and where I needed to study more in. 

 

I'm still very curious about the idea of unconventional fighting styles in games, and continuing this thread will certainly help me with games I legally can try to do, though i think i should be able to try to get the legal permission to make a game based off of a manga. I mean, Naruto and Dragonball have lots of games, though truthfully, they are primarily Mortal Kombat-esque, rather than the explore-able, interactive rpg way I wanted to do



#6 Kenji Kousagi   Members   -  Reputation: 124

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:45 AM

This topic could be applied to a broad spectrum of situations.

 

In a game that is based around a series of characters and one (or two in this situation) are important but are seen very much. ((Basically restating your OP))

 

You could do side missions where every time you transition characters you briefly visit one of the characters in question. Depending on the flow of your game, this could be adjusted.

 

I've never been a fan of the Kindom Heart series but sonicarrow does have point. I like the name pun there Tom haha.



#7 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 04:19 AM

That by be good in an interactive/adventure game, like The Kore (I'm using this as reference because my sister owns it and I don't have many reference material. I'm sorry if it isn't a well known game), where the point of the game is to move from area to area, usually in a 3D platform style, but it doesn't have to. Spyro or Crash Bandicoot are also good examples.

 

But i guess I'm just getting hung up on the manga still, but it was primarily a fighting game, with many, if not all, of the character's key or only moments are centered around taking down big bosses, I feel that players will get confused if the character all of a sudden has to play as a 3rd/1st person shooter, when previously they were going as a melee beat em up character. 

 

One idea may be to put the game like how Super Smash Brothers Brawl did, by using the interactive story mode as a separate entity from the main purpose of the game. Maybe make it a 3D beat em up game with shooter and flight capabilities as accessible attributes given to individual characters. Players can practice with different game plays by having the story change from one group of characters, letting additional players come around and play, but ad some adventure and 3D exploration that SSBB left out in their sidescroller method (though, admittedly, the game SSBB's game play was made as a reference to the traditional side-scroller game play of Nintendo's earlier products that many of their characters had still mostly been involved in). 

 

Actually, that does sound like a good idea for a multi-character game idea, though it seems unused for some reason. Did Mortal Kombat vs DC have a travel based system like SSBB? Or was it just fight after fight after fight like most beat em up games?



#8 Kenji Kousagi   Members   -  Reputation: 124

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:08 AM

Did you ever play Streets of Rage (or any of its clones)? It's like a cross between a platformer and a fighting game.

 

Basically you walk down the street punching everyone in the face till you get to the other side. At the end you fight the boss and so on.

The thing about the style is it allows for lot's of different play styles of characters within simple boundries.

 

Had a thought just now...

Dynasty warriors has a cr*pload of characters and they bounce all over the place. You could definately checkout gameplay and how they do story transitions.



#9 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 06:07 AM

I don't have a Sega Genesis, but I am going on a Retro shopping spree, so I'll try to find Streets of Rage to give it a shot. I'll also go look for Dynasty Warrior, as I've heard a lot about it. thank you



#10 Kenji Kousagi   Members   -  Reputation: 124

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 07:15 AM

Id go ahead and just wiki SoR (and games of their genre), the concept is super easy to grasp, hell even looking at a youtube clip or two would tell you all you need.

Dynasty Warriors is a simple hack'n'slash but it pretty much shaped the genre plus with the amount of games they released you shouldnt have a hard time finding one for pretty cheap.



#11 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 08:00 AM

I know a little about Dynasty Warriors from a few reviews, and the presentation looks awesome.

 

As I looked over SoR, it just felt like any other beat em up from the 80s. Maybe it had the potential to let three people play, dunno cause i stopped watching right away, but the characters were just stereotypes of beat em up games: a white main character with very Anglo-Saxon traits, a woman wearing a revealing outfit (She probably used a lot of kicks and was faster than the others, and a tough black guy. There were some combat traits shown on the front page, but they looked arbitrary at best. On a whole, it looked like a cr*ppy way of trying to do a multi-player beat em up game. And when I said 3D, i didn't mean 2.5D. people seem to make that mistake sometimes, i know i did at first with the whole New Super Mario Bros. I mean, 2.5 allows for more interesting images, and in regards to SoR, it allows for four six directional movement, but i just feel that pure 2D beat em ups with characters jumping onto moving trunks and onto fences and roads was more strategic than being able to move in four directions as well as jump and duck. 

 

But I'm side-tracting. The point i wanted to do with the Reborn game idea, was to try and make separate game play, as a way to show off the different fighting styles the characters all had. One used swordplay and the environment (modern FF + Sandbox games, only just using water as a useable material), another used only his fists (pure beat em up, only i'm sure with much more detailed 3D platforming perspective), one used illusions to do espionage (Solid snake, old FF with magic used more often, you get the drift), and another guy who mostly flies around and avoids combat, turning a fighter jet game into a person with rockets on his hands. These characters are all so different that if any of them had a game alone, only the flyer guy would be able to make a game using the plot of the story because he was the main character. The rest, if they wanted their own game, would definitely require added story feature especially for Ryohei and Hibari.



#12 Kenji Kousagi   Members   -  Reputation: 124

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 08:46 AM

Ah I get it now.

I figured I would get the thoughtflow going a bit at least. I was trying to visualize out loud a bit. Plus, you never know what you can find inspiration in! :D



#13 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 09:08 AM

alright, let's try and get into the idea i think you were trying to spur. With your help i at least figured how i was able to get Ryohei's combat system set up, and how i was going to allow for all the characters to shine, without ruining plot. But i still have the major flaw of how to present game play for Hibari. His overall style of combat in the manga is as a one-man army. But he never uses firearms. If anything, he feels kind of like Kratos, only with a little magic applied to him as well.

 

But let's lookn at things from a kevin bacon experience. We compared Hibari to a one-man army who never used gun, but instead used unconventional melee weapons. one of them being a long chain. Then we compare him to Kratos from God of War. He too was a one-man army. he used swords instead of tonfas, but the force he used in combat was the same, plus they both used chains. Now, unless Kratos had the ability to summon monsters to fight his battles, or used magic in some way, we'll need to extend this bacon list. who knows, we might read six degrees. 

 

what is similar to kratos, but uses more magic in its game play. we can lessen the destructiveness or brutality of the game play as we go down this list. what character is a strong, if not powerful figure, with a range of weapons, going from mid-range to close range, but also used magic. now the difference would be that he would need to used weapons for mid-close range, while using magic for long range. I don't play many games sadly, i need to remedy this, but maybe something from Dragon Quest, or i think that is what it is called. The game had you hunting giant monsters to make weapons and armor from their bodies. Did the character in that game ever use magic? What about Cloud from FF, did his game play ever allow choosing between magic and buster sword? (You see how i am ignoring range differences now)



#14 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 07:41 PM

I looked into Cloud and FF7's game play, and i feel i might have actually gotten a good idea for how to incorporate the game play into Hibari. Use combat methods like Kratos to present the brutal, raw destructive capabilities, as well as allowing for the chain-to-melee change i want. But also allow for instant weapon slot/equip change. Remember the magic method used in FF 7? where you would equip different spheres to grant different magic. To work with the fluidity, the character will be able to mash buttons to deal damage in melee, but will also be able to change the equipe weapon from tonfa/chain, to magic porcupine, and allow for different spells to be used: Mow down the enemy, barrage a swarm of enemies, used bullet charge, etc.This also allows for his game play to be done in a RPG style, while Ryohei would be done in a Beat em up game play. and it fits their weapons. Ryohei uses boxing, which is a western fighting style, and beat em up is primarily focused on western scenery and environment, while Hiabri uses weapons that at their core are traditional, though unconventional. Tonfas come from Eastern martial art, animal summons are very common in FF, etc. 

 

The only problem i now see coming up is with Hibari's use of handcuffs. They aren't very common in his fighting style, but he does defeat a boss using only handcuffs. But the only use of handcuffs I can remember in video games is from that Batman game where you could handcuff thugs after you took them out. Brilliant game play, but not at all how hibari used it. Hibari used the handcuffs to capture the enemy in mid spar. to lock their wrist or other weapon. I think for this, as he only really uses the handcuffs once, and just to defeat one boss, it would be better to just have him use cutscenes with button commands, like how Resident Evil 4 did with a few of their fights. Boss fights are too cinematic to leave it to the player alone, so let the enemy try to weave down the enemy, and when they accomplish that, they cut to a cutscene that lets the player mash combos to help the player continue through the cutscene. In my opinion, this is the best way to make an interactive, cinematic game play, though others might not agree. It allows for the player to react to required tasks, while accomplishing the actual feats of defeating a semi-shade of the awe-inspiring cinematic enemy. Sure, the enemy would be way stronger and the win more rewarding if the enemy was only fought one on one, without the director's help, but i feel that cinematic help is greater to game play sometimes.

 

Now that I got Hibari squared away, and Ryohei is settled for now, I guess the best choice of option is to go over the other five to make sure I don't get biased about my choices, but first, I think i should get your impute on my decisions so far. Do you agree? Do you feel a better approach could have been made?



#15 dakota.potts   Members   -  Reputation: 455

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:24 PM

So consider this: You can take team members along on missions (say 3 or 4 max out of 7) allowing you to choose which characters you take. However, each character has their own missions that they must be a part of the party on. Sometimes you may need 2 or even 3 specific characters allowing you to choose the wild cards. This could be done Final Fantasy style or Ghost Recon style or anything in between. This way, while certain characters may have less necessary story missions, they are always free to join the ones for other players.

During the ending of the game, you could require a group of 3 to do a small mission which the group of the remaining 4 will finish, therefore wrapping up involvement with all 7 characters.

Just a thought, since this seems to be a thought experiment.

#16 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 12:57 AM

a completely acceptable thought, and one that i will more than willingly choose to look into. Most console systems only allow for four players at a time, which is often more than any household ever uses at a time. So having 3 characters at a time is a pretty good estimate of feasible character options. 

 

The other characters I will discuss in a list before tackling them all one after another:

 

Sawada "Tsuna" Tsunayoshi - Tsuna has rockets on his hands that allow for him to fly and move like a jet. It also allows for him to attack with fire, blasting flamethrowers at his enemies, and trapping enemies in fiery pillars.

 

Lambo - A baby wearing a cow suit that can switch places with his ten year older self on occasion. When he is a baby, he throws pink grenades, while as a teen, he runs into his enemies like a charging bull, with electricity coating his body to increase the damage.

 

Mukuro Rukuro - This character can also transform. He can move around as an owl, though probably much more rudimentary than Tsuna, and change to a warrior who slashes with a trident. He has the power to cast illusions however he wants to make whatever he wants to happen, in your mind. 

 

Takeshi Yamamoto - Yamamoto is a swordsman that uses the surrounding water to increase the destructiveness of his strokes. 

 

Hayato Gokudera - Gokudera uses a launcher equiped to his arm to fire blasts of energy to destroy his targets. He can equip power-ups to give his blaster new powers. This goes from five different categories: Storm-His normal launcher, Rain-weakens enemy barriers, saving firepower, Sun-Works like a machine-gun, firing a barrage of shots that all home in on the target, Cloud-a shot-gun like attack that sprays an assault of energy over everyone in front of him, and Lightning, which was his strongest attack and could demolish anything in its path. 

 

 

 

Tsuna is a speed guy, a lot like Sonic, only he is also aerial, so his game mechanics are often like that of a jet plane, moving through a series of obstacle courses. But he is also a  humanoid character, and this is a combat styled game, so he still needs to be able to fight, as well as fly. This is where the joist stick will usually be used for directional movement, and if this is put on a Wii, which is probably will due to its origin, it will have access to the Wii motion controller, allowing for directional tilting. Think Super Mario Galaxy with that bird that carried Mario around, and you simply had to guide it using the Wii remote. You could then bring the arrow buttons as combat directions for when he fights in one place.

 

Lambo is an interesting method that I can only think of two ways that really did it similar. the Minish Cap from the Zelda franchise, and the mini-giant world in Super Mario 64. both of these worlds showed ways that the player could change from baby Lambo to teenager Lambo. 

 

Mukuro is like a cross between Solid Snake and a Black Mage from the old FF. He uses Illusions to make himself invisible for stealth, send barrages of magical attacks that cause mazing theatrical effects, to other tricks for game play. 

 

Yamamoto's Game direction is a little off, as all the games are heading towards the same way, but Yamamoto uses water to increase his attack, so he could damage pipes to let water out on the ground. The water could follow Yamamoto, just because of magic, but he could end up waisting water the more high-powered water attacks he uses. So it might require strategy in how much magic you use, and how often you just use basic hack-and-slash attacks. 

 

Gokudera was the one I was inspired to amke a first person shooter. And I already explaine dhow his system would be built on power ups, but that isn't all. Throughout the game, there will be mobs that all seven characters will need to combat, maybe less for Tsuna, as he will be air-born a lot, but the enemies will use a one out of seven magic types that any of them have. Now, not many will use projectiles outside of Gokudera, who will probably get many of them, but still his fair share of close-up enemies that he will need to escape and regroup. But this Magic type will mean that sometimes Yamamoto's Water magic will destroy an enemy, while another will require two or three more hits. 

 

The seven types of magic, with their core character are as follow, with their direct weakness:

Tsuna-Sky-weak to Sky

Lambo-Lightning-weak to Storm

Gokudera-Storm(Primarily)-weak to lightning

Yamamoto-Rain-weak to sun

Ryohei-Sun-weak to rain

Mukuro-Mist-weak to cloud

Hibari-Cloud-weak to cloud

 

Now, remember when I talked about the different power ups for Gokudera's blaster and how their types now seem to match up with the elements just shown below? well Gokudera can equip different types of blasters to change his blaster's type, but his equip blasters have limited ammo. this is why he is allowed these power-ups. because he uses strategy to choose which powerup to use. Does he just trust the always there Storm blaster to take out the weaklings one at a time, or does he round them all up and them unleash one cloud attack on them to shut them all down at once. strategy.

 

Of course, his power-up system and Hibari's weapon equip system will need to be looked into for the brawl section of the game as well afterwards.



#17 Deathbymanga   Members   -  Reputation: 134

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 08:16 AM

was it too much to add a type system with strengths an weaknesses?






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