I think you should make just one mode. And make it the most fun possible. Personally, I believe a game focusing on one thing is always better that one that tries to do many incompatible things. At least I have never seen one that would not be better if they discarded the excessive modes.
AcharisMember Since 05 Oct 2010
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Posted by Acharis on 12 December 2013 - 03:42 PM
I'm not sure why you ask, is there some reason you can't do it the same way other games of the genre you are making did? Generally, menu is probably the last place where you would want to be original (confusion).
Posted by Acharis on 05 December 2013 - 01:17 PM
Check that one if you want to get into the mood of mercantilism http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercantilism
Trade subsystem for a *relatively simple* strategy game during industrial revolution. You govern an island nation and want to industrialize it.
I look for a suitable trading system and please try not to go too complex, it's just a subsystem, it's not a trading sim
- it needs to allow acquiring some resources, since the player won't have them all domestically in sufficient quantities
- it should use merchant ships (player owned) to carry stuff
- you should be able to buy raw resources
- you should be able to sell finished products (preferably with some limit, so you can't simply produce and sell everything and make big bucks), maybe some sort of "markets for finished products" would do the trick?
- it might use navy ships to "protect the trade"
Posted by Acharis on 05 December 2013 - 05:51 AM
Well, my personal recommendation would be to stop reading these design docs and start making a game. Any game.
Can you give me personal recommendations?
Otherwise you might turn into an armchair designer who only talk and plan and never finishes
Making games is soo much more fun than reading some boring design docs...
Posted by Acharis on 03 December 2013 - 12:32 PM
1) Are there value limits? Looking at the example game: 0 low 9 high and actions to increase or decrease past the limit results in no change.
Yes, partially. Support can't be higher than population of the province. If there are 2k people, rebels can at most get 2k strength (which is unlikely since support of 50% would be a soft cap). It also means the player can afford (and actually should in many cases) let the situation go wild in some uninmportant provinces (mountains with a few small villages, let the rebels rule there) and focus on defending important provinces instead (capital and provinces with cities).
2) Is there a setup phase? If so do I choose where my capital will be?
No. You are a dictator, not a settler, you inherited/obtained the country with a pre existing situation and your goal is to change it (or not let it degrade further). There also will be, quite likely, different scenarios (with different starting conditions).
3) Are there multiple phases per turn once the game started?
No... Each turn would probably represent 1 month, so you will be operating at the strategy level. Note that most of the time you will be dealing with economy (building infrastructure) not with fighting rebels.
4) Can the the rebellion event occur multiple times?
5) Is there any more you can reveal about how fighting works?
I think it will be quite primitive (since it's not a wargame). You have police units, regular army units and heavy army units. Rebels have just one generic rebel unit. Police units can fight rebels but that's a last resort, they are primarily used to suppress the support before the rebelion occurs. Regular army units are like 2-3 times stronger than rebel units. Heavy army units are not really meant to fight rebels, they are 3 times stronger than your regular army units and are used for military coups threats, they can fight rebels, but not much better than regular units and they have heavy penalties in mountain provinces.
Generally, when opposing units occupy the same province they fight until one is crushed (destroyed rebel units will spawn "guerillla markers" in the province, which you should deal with later). The combat in province represents a series of battles in a big territory (a province is rather big battlefield), it could take 3 turns (months) to reach a conclusion.
Each province is controlled by the government (you) or by rebels. If you are fighting an opponent you can withdraw to neighbour province that is controled by your side (so you can retreat with your police units for example).
You (the player) are time pressed, the very existence of regular, moving rebel units (not guerillas) makes people doubt if you (the government) is controling the country. Prolonged fighting with rebels might make the population to overthrow you (or a military coupt will start if the military decides that a general would be a better dictator since you are so incompetent). Generally, rebels, even during a rebellion are not that deadly strong, but they have all the time on this planet and they can start a new rebellion later; you don't have this luxury and you need to crush them every time and you need to do it swiftly.
Posted by Acharis on 01 December 2013 - 01:55 PM
This topic is for a "dictator" type game (turn based strategy/sim). I want to focus here on internal conflicts like rebels, uprising, military coups.
I look for anything related, comments, polishing, other ideas.
A *very* short list of other games of this genre
Dictator from ZX-Spectrum (remake here: http://www.nrtoone.com/dictator/ ), Tropico 1,3,4 (a nice one, partially based on ZX-Spectrum version but with focus on infrastructure, but the internal struggle part is weak, especially in earlier instances), and some very old PC almost text only game I can't recall the name that you always ended up overthrowed no matter what you did.
In short, not much to borrow from
Premise of my game
You are a dictator of a small island made up of around 16 provinces. Each province has some infractructure, ecnonomy, population, etc. Among other things these can revolt (not necessarily the whole population, could be just some factions that don't want you in power anymore). By design the situation on the island would be somewhat unstable, so you would need to face some internal threats on regular basis even if you keep the population perfectly happy.
My idea of implementation (the rebel part)
There would be a RED faction (some sort of extremely levist communits that wants to replace you). The map (and the whole game) would be kind of "layered", each province would have infrastructure, population and other stuff you can affect. It will also have statistics of RED support level in a province, number of their bases and guerillas. You can't easily affect this "enemy" layer, it does not affect you as well. But when a rebelion breaks up, all these provinces will spawn enemy military units that you need to fight of with your army before they reach and capture your capital.
You would have 2 main assets to fight RED, police and army (tokens on the map). Police would be used to slow down the support of the RED. The army would be used to fight RED when things go too grim (like full blown uprising with spawn RED units or fight the guerillas). Optionally, you would be able to send army to do more drastic, semi police like actions, but it would cause discontent among the population.
Or maybe police would be tracking rebel bases and then the army would launch attack to eradicate them.
Generally, you would be trying to reduce the support of RED (by not upseting population and by using police) and later, when inevitably they start a rebel, use army to crush them (and protect your palace).
I was also thinking of adding another faction, the YELLOW (or orange), some sort of rich plantators or capitalists that would like to get rid of you as well, BUT above all they do not want the RED to take over. They would always attack RED first, and in a desperate situation, they could even help you (they see you as the lesser evil).
So you have a dilemma, they are bad and they undermine your rule (reduce stability of your country and have other unpleasant effects), but they are not that strong (to rebel openly) and they could help stop the RED. You could want to get rid of them or order police to overlook them so they can fight your common enemy, the RED.
Posted by Acharis on 26 November 2013 - 05:58 PM
This topic is about my prototype of a turn based strategy game that was simulating industrial revolution. I posted here a post mortem, but I also would like to get your ideas how to redo/fix it, since I like this project. So any comments are highly welcomed
The prototype was a turn based, very small and cozy strategy game of industrial revolution period. You had 16 provinces (an island), no enemies, no combat, just economy/infrastructure/trade.
The core mechanic was factories and resources transformation. For example you first built coal mine and iron mine, then foundry to make steel ((5 coal + 5 iron = 5 steel )* numer of foundries), then you could use steel to produce other things. There were many other formulas like this (wood to planks OR paper; wood to textiles; clay to bricks).
Each province had population, it was providing labour to factories and consumed food (they key was to improve agriculture via fertilizers and machines so you could free farmers and convert them to labourers and to get a population boom).
What went wrong
1) The biggest fail was province level factories/mines. You were building factories in provinces, but the resources were country wide. I made 2 reasons to make province selection important. First, was the transport cost, the resources were to be transported (invisible to the player! another not so great idea) to other provinces (so you wanted to build a foundry in a provice that had coal and iron mine). The second reason was wages; the wages paid to labourers were based on unemplyment/overhours, so you wanted to spread your factories more or less evenly.
But... as a player I noticed I really wanted the information how many coal mines I have GLOBALLY compared to my iron mines GLOBALLY and foundries GLOBALLY. So when building inside a province I was always looking to the country global stats. I even dispalyed two numbers next to each mine/factory how many of these I have locally (in province) and how many in the whole country. It sux, big
2) Next problem was the provinces identification, I could not get to rememebr what I have where But, that's maybe there was no map yet, just a dropdown list with province names.
3) Next one was pointless localization of provinces. Yes, this was this (hidden) auto transport of goods thing, but other than that it made no difference where each province was located (neighbours).
4) The last mistake, I think, was the cleanliness of resource system. I insisted on fixed 1 coal + 1 iron = 1 steel (s the player can instantly calculate how many mines he needs to build to assure flawless enonomy). Which made all improvements like efficiency technologies impossible (other than by big steps) and what worse all factories always had the same efficiency no matter the labourers (labourers availability only affected the wages costs - if there was a shortage of workers you simply paide much more). I also insisted on no fraction of resources (like 0.95 coal) which probably was a mistake...
What went right
The theme was great, I really liked it. The resource system (coal+iron=steel), even through had flaws in implementation, was very nice, it felt like an industrial era.
How would I do it now
First, I would make it less clean and take away from the player some control. There is no need for a player to be able to calculate everything precisely, approximation is all right. Maybe even some randomness (in mines capacity for example) or delays in production, generally, a bit less predictability how many units of toilet paper your industry will make next turn Just a clear understanding of general direction is sufficient (this would also cut down on boring micromanagement).
Next I would discard the artificial systems that were supposed to give some significance to provinves localization, like transport of resources. It was complex, messy, hidden from the player and generally did more harm than good. Instead I probably would make some factory slots in provinces or other purely local stuff.
And above all, I would much earlier implement a map, like that one And I would allow putting some tokens on provinces (on the main map, not from inside the province). These things simply look tasty
(it's just a draft of a map, don't try to find a logic why each province has different icons, I was just testing what icons/font sizes would look best)
Posted by Acharis on 22 November 2013 - 02:53 PM
In theory. In practice, how many people who like playing online arcade games do not have Flash installed already?
but you'd be surprised by how many people will hit the back button on their browser when they encounter a prompt to install the latest version of Flash or Unity Player.
(althrough, I have heard some whinning of Flash players who were refusing installing Unity3D, but really, since Kongregate fully supports and promotes Unity3D games I is hard for me to believe those are players worth fighting for)
Tip: do not care about general population, care only about the tiny part of the population who already likes playing the kind of games you are making.
Posted by Acharis on 20 November 2013 - 03:41 PM
Hmmm, how to explain it best... OK, I will tell it this way, there is a big HTML5 fashion right now, there are hordes of people that will shout "use it, use it, it will do whatever you want!" They lie to you It's not that there is any separate lie, everything you mentioned is correct, JS is pretty fast nowadays (compared to the past), it usually works (not always, as you noticed with FireFox in your case), it can even do real 3D via WebGL (if you have the plugin installed which most people don't). The thing is, HTML+JS was not built for speed. It was not the purpose or the main objective of these languages. Flash (and especially Unity3D) were designed to build blazing fast arcade games from the start, that was their purpose, these were designed for it.
Or to put it another way, your game is very slow on my machine (4core CPU, 8GB RAM). If you made it in Flash/Unity3D I could *bet* it would be very fast no matter how crappy your coding skills would be. And the best thing, you would not need to care what version of what browser the players use, it would run *identical* on all on them.
Posted by Acharis on 20 November 2013 - 10:30 AM
Such game should be made with Flash or Unity3D. HTML5 is simply not fast enough to provide smooth scrolling. Not suitable for arcade (you can make some strategies in it, maybe even RPGs, but not arcade).
Sure, maybe you could fix it and make it work, but... why wasting time on optimizing when you could use the optimal tool from the very start?
Posted by Acharis on 19 November 2013 - 04:52 PM
How a purely IF style text adventure would be better than a point & click graphical adventure? That's the question you need to answer (how one concept is better than another concept, not just if it's bearable). Otherwise it's just making an inferior version of the game...
Note that graphical adventures killed text adventures in late 80s (I think), it's not that it's a modern trend. So, even nostalgia driven people are, well, heavily extinct in that case. Even the point & click adventures were announced dead decades ago (yet it resurrected due to kickstarter).
I don't know, I'm skeptical, but I suppose, under specific conditions and for specific niches it could work. I just would not count for it to be a success of the level of Deponia.
Posted by Acharis on 17 November 2013 - 12:24 PM
Ignore it. Players won't really mind nor care... There is "suspension of disbelief" that players are supposed to provide
Besides, you are not fully correct. It's not possible to go beyond faster than light (except cheating like wormholes, but that's not about the speed but distance), not within Einstein's model of the universe. Going above the speed of light would break more things that free time travel...
To be more precise, space and time are inside the same equation. When you increase space (like speed) then you *have to* decrease time. So space + time = always 1, therefore if space (speed) would ever go above 1 this whole equaliton would go into negative numbers... And that would make the whole Einstein model universe made kaboom
Posted by Acharis on 15 November 2013 - 04:50 PM
Make hull bar red, not green.
Also, add numbers! Anyone who wants to get details of a ship wants numbers, just a bar is not enough. And other stats (weapons, damage, hit chance, evasion, speed).
Cooldown is not really needed... It's too "temporary" to make that information useful. Maybe just icons of weapons (just next to the description of the weapon's damage and range) that change colours based on how soon they will be ready?
Posted by Acharis on 10 November 2013 - 03:59 AM
After playing Twillight Struggle Nth time, I have changed my opinion a bit. I don't think the replayability of a map does not come from different maps. I single static map that you play on over and over is still surprisingly replayable (if compared to pure event based games)! I wonder why...
So basically what you're saying is that if we go for an event-based approach, gameplay is gonna be roughly similar every time you play the game so it gets boring quickly.
I start to think that maybe a map + events that affect the map are the way to go?
Oh, no. I'm not gonna portrait Versailles of Luis the Sun, no way! There is a limit how degenerated, depraved and sick a game can be
Oh, you can have the player manage the nobles.
Some french king had decided every nobleman should be with him 9 months a year, making them spend money on parties and all and then loaned them money, making them more dependent on him.(because nobles can rebel)
On a more serious note, just managing nobles seems meh to me. As King of Men said, if you want to manage nobles go and play CK2, it portrayed it very good. I don't think I woulod be able to do it much better than they. Plus, I lean more towards a bureaucratic empire, like there is this emperor and organizations, guilds, corporations, social struggle, spreaders of dangerous ideas. Less feudal and more modern (not that they can't be nobles there, I don't have anything agains them, but just limiting it to nobles seems not so great to me).
Posted by Acharis on 09 November 2013 - 08:10 AM
I think you might be interested in this topic http://www.gamedev.net/topic/649747-innovation-vs-proven-concepts/ ...