What is the actual game mechanism, is the player able to manipulate the time, to freeze it, jump back to alter the game progress or is it just a generic MMORPG with a fantasy-time setting ?
Before I being, I’d like to put up my thought about the “Hub” as such that I want the character to originate around whenever not fighting:
The Hub will incorporate features from Bastion. One such feature is the concept of having to progress and acquire a certain item in order to unlock buildings in the Hub. I will use Time Shards instead. So the hub will start with the basic Blacksmith and Potion Brewer and will require you to spend Time Shards in order to unlock more buildings or upgrade already known buildings. This will be also the place all “Friendly’s” discovered along the way come to. It will contain certain other areas that I wish to think up, like Sora’s personal room where you can hang medals/Achievements or items you have collected etc.
When I first created this, I hadn’t put much thought into the design concept, so I decided to start from scratch and came up with the idea to write down all the generalized topics I wish to cover in my design, and delve into it through there. I came up with the following ones:
What can the player do?
Run, walk 360 degrees, Crouch, Block (requires shield), attack (does not require sword), spell (requires equipped spell), Potion, Passive Ability’s (did not wish to implement ability’s, make it more complicated than it needs to be)), Skills (specific skills designed for specific weapons), Capture/Train pets (any monster in the game except bosses and mini-bosses can be tamed, higher the level the more Time Shards required and it doesn’t always work)
What can the player use/What can he level up?
Player can use: Swords, shields, bows, Guns, spells, potions, Pets
Player can level up: Stats (the basic RPG stats), any equipment can be upgraded except for potions, Passive ability’s, Skills, Buildings in the Hub (such as the blacksmith, or to put one in in the first place if it’s not there yet), Pets, certain character movements like run or block will be able to be leveled up as well
How does the player progress?
The player progresses by “beating a level” and returning to the hub, either with one of the big Time Shards or crossing out that area in the map as an area without a big Time Shard. Levels can be completed again, but the Time Shards gained are reduced by /10
What can the environment do?
The environment can fall, it contains traps (to be specified at a later date), Invisible areas, extra areas that can only be accessed through certain ability’s or weapons (extra areas, with benefits)
Stepping on certain areas will make them fall, Traps (once again, specified later)
Every time a level is cleared, the world will darken slightly (I’m thinking of making it so that you can only clear levels so many times before it is too late and time cannot be repaired and you lose the game. The only way to stop this is to get a big Time Shard which restores time again, giving you a drive to progress onwards and stopping people from “grinding” to make the game easier)
I don’t feel the need to specify this very deeply. There will be 4 kinds of enemies, mini-bosses, bosses and Time Shard bosses. The 4 kinds of enemies are the Normal monsters, the Enhanced Monsters, the Super Monsters and the Time Monsters (ones that have been affected by time so deeply, they display traits of several monsters). The mini-bosses will occur at random intervals in a level, and usually involve some sort of “entrance” visualization (as in, mini-bosses are not set, and so appear at random when a player is in the middle of a level).
The bosses will occur at the end of every level that does not have a big Time Shard, and are randomly decided (there power is not). The Time Shard bosses are a total of four, and are extremely intelligent beasts that protect the shards. After they are defeated, the player gains a ton of Time Shards and if they attempt to capture the beast before its death then they gain a special ability (a nice hidden trick huh). The Time Shard bosses are very important in the story line, as they explain certain things as well (and they hint at the fact that taking the four shards might not turn out the way they you wanted it too).
Hades will help you out throughout the game, and I wish to have an ultimate hidden ability you can acquire that allows you to meld with Hades for a short time to gain incredible power. I think I’ll implement this ability by showing interest in Hades, and asking about his story.
Most of the other friendly’s will be at the hub, as in the blacksmith and the rest. I will add in a few other people that can be found along the way of the adventure, and appear at the hub after the level you find them on (they are not compulsory either, but you can gain benefits from them by hearing their stories as well).
Also, I assume pets can be counted as friendly’s as well.
I actually wish for there to be no progress requirements for unlocking things. You either need to have the right level, enough Time Shards, or find it through a hidden means. The only progress requirements would be for the hidden ones, since they are hidden throughout the different levels.
I don’t find it too necessary to dwell on, but I’m thinking of having a score for killing, destroying things, collecting loot and finding hidden stuff. There will also be a multiplier, which multiplies depending on how many Time Shards you have stored up and the difficulty. Which means, if you make it harder on yourself by not spending Time Shards then you gain a better score at the end. Achievements can be thought up much later.
This is just my thought that there should be hidden abilities that you have always had that you won’t be told about, and will have to discover for yourself.
How linear should the pathing be?
My idea is to set it in 5 areas. Area 1-4 will be when you are collecting Shards 1-4 and while you can go anywhere in that area, you can progress past the area until you find the big Time Shard (which generates at a random part in the level). The last Area will be once you have shards 1-4, and will be a small Linear area unlike the rest (the main storyline will finish here, and it won’t be that long).
First things first, excellent concept, and a very good start - What kind of game-play are you envisioning? It sound like it's very similar to Kingdom Hearts (also with the character name Sora (the main character in KH)), but from what you said, I can picture more of a third person wasd system.
Keep the ideas flowing! Do you have a blog/site/display space for any of this, or is it all internal?
Haha yeah, I randomly thought of Sora from there and decided to implement the name, so it doesn’t have much impact on the actual gameplay. Hmmm, the game-play I’m envisioning? I guess I wish to have some similar aspects to this game on the computer, Bastion. I only realized after I created this that the concepts were similar, but I think I’ll implement versions of some of the stuff in the game. I also like the idea of a “Hub”, somewhere to rest after the journeys and upgrade etc. That’s one of the main things I’ll put in. Also maybe put in the narrator talk, it was an interesting concept. If you look at the game: http://www.youtube.c...v=TptJHeWngJs#!, you’ll get a general concept of what kind of game I want to achieve.
The system itself is unknown right now; I would definitely prefer it to be a third person viewpoint though. Whether it’s open world, or a side-scroller I’m unsure of. I’m leaning more to open world.
I forgot to include the genre, sorry. It's an RPG.
Impeding on ingrained concepts of Humanity, and altering them in a realistic viewpoint…While this was not my initial thoughts when I created this concept, I realized that if I projected my aim this way the results could turn out in a much more favourable way. Here is what my original idea was:
God bestows upon man the ability to rewrite time. In this instance, time cannot be altered excessively or else it will unravel, which proceeds to happen. After time has shattered, the story begins with his quest to restore time.
A pretty basic concept and one I doubt that’s never been thought up before. I mean, time unravelling? Not too original. These were my first thoughts on what my idea had started as, but as I began to think deeper, I started to wonder…how would my audience be affected by my story if I used ingrained truths they've been brought up with and altered them? With this thought in mind, I began to alter the concepts of the characters and the design of the story. With the story design, I decided to alter three fundamental concepts Humanity knows (not agrees with).
1. God is good
2. Devil is evil
3. Big Bang created the universe
Here is the new story design:
Pseudo (“God”) bestows, upon a man named Sora, the ability to rewrite time. Sora, being brought up with high moral values, decided to set his sights on removing all the evil that once happened. Yet time can only be altered so much, before it beings to unravel. Unbeknownst to him, this had already started and so as he progressed through time it began to unravel at a continuously increasing speed. By the time he realizes that all of time was unraveling it was already too late and so time broke into an infinite amount of shards. Everything goes dark, and Sora wakes up back on Earth. At first, everything is seemingly fine, but as he explores Earth he discovers that everything in existence has converged upon it. With a confused mind, he sets out to uncover the truth and in doing so meets Hades (“Devil”). Sora finds out from him that all of time has converged upon one point. Hades continues to explain to him that time is in temporary stasis, yet soon it will start to implode upon itself; and only by repairing time can it stop. He tells Sora that this has happened before, and is what is known on Earth as the Big Bang. Yet this time the universe will not be able to survive the explosion, due to it still repairing itself after the previous one (the universe’s continuous expansion is this). Hades says that in order for time to repair itself, it must get back the main body of itself which contains its emergency functions. This main body is split into four, and scattered across Earth. In order to restore it, all four shards must be brought into the center of the convergence of time. Hades then continues to offer his help.
Interestingly enough, I had done some theorisation a year or so back about possibilities such as these and that is a significant factor to leading me to coming to the conclusions of what to alter. I also wanted to have a way that the world changes, in order to enhance the feeling of time imploding/running out:
As Sora progresses, the world grows darker and darker and things become less visible. When this becomes increasingly obvious, he asks the devil and he explains that time is starting to implode upon itself and is causing everything that was once of time to slowly fade away.
Now, when I glanced at the character concepts, I decided that Hades and Pseudo should have some sort of mature “squabbling” as such. I also delved back into previous hypothetical thoughts I’ve had, and found one that put Pseudo and Hades as “Protectors of the Earth”. Aliens, as such, that are here to maintain the balance and prevent external influences to effect Earth. I decided to maintain some of their original concepts though, such as the Underworld because I liked the idea of Hades having to bear the burden of the Dead because Pseudo forced it upon him. It also ties in with my idea for currency and leveling that is later on. Here are the characters:
Pseudo and Hades are aliens who protect the Earth from outside influences, but they are at odds all the time. This is because Pseudo is irresponsible, and causes problems like this all the time. Besides that, Pseudo refused to help Hades out with the dead and so Hades has spent his entire life helping out the Dead. The only upside to this is he has their total loyalty, and so Sora receives help from them in his journey. Their squabbles originate from their huge differences, and the fact that they've been together since time began. Thinking on this, I decided upon a love-hate sort of relationship since long-term friendship usually becomes such a thing. No feelings for each other though, since I didn't want to side-track the story for them.
Sora is set as a human with high moral values, which is then shown to be the cause of the suffering. I created the character this way in order to impede upon people the neutrality of this universe, and how being good doesn't necessarily put the world better off. Things are not all black and white, as such. I also wanted him to have a deep past, that is eventually shown throughout the story. I decided to put no lover in there, since this story wouldn't do as well with one (which is usually the opposite case).
Now, when I delved into actual character progress, I hit a stump to being with. I thought, this is the end of the universe. So there’s no way I can use money as the currency, and if time is stuck then giving him the look of growing stronger is out of the question. So I decided upon a more interesting solution to the currency and leveling problem. Time shards:
Buying any sort of item requires “Time Shards”, the currency of this game. Since time has been unraveled and it’s all converged together, all knowledge on building such things has been lost. At the start of his quest, Hades offers Sora the services of his blacksmith etc. and explains that though their memory is lost, it can be partly temporarily restored. The more difficult the creation of an item, the more Time Shards needed to restore the knowledge. Also the greater the weapon, and the more Time Shards used, the harder it is to wield (needs a certain level)
Also, Sora discovers straight away that he has lost all his strength too. Hades explains to him that because he is the one who directly caused this event, everything he could do previously has been removed. He tells Sora that although this is the case, he still has the ability to rewrite time. Hades asks to see the ability, and after messing with it for a bit says that his altered version should know allow him to permanently gain back part of his strength by using Time Shards.
Doing this not only created a way for the character to gain currency, and level, but it also created the typical “spending Choice” most games incorporate. The player will have to carefully choose how much Time Shards to expend in buying items and leveling the character.
This is as far as I have gotten in the development. I would like as much constructive criticism as possible on what I have already thought up, as well as some ideas on expansions of what I have created/new concepts to the game.
Take note that I do not wish to keep this game concept solely for my own development, in fact I don’t even want to create the game itself. I wish to work on the story and design and pass it onto a team who can do something with this. My experience is not near enough to go anywhere with this, and I’ll happily admit it. Yet I won’t discard or stop creating this idea.
I’m hoping that I can get a lot of help from you, the community, in expanding this idea and if any of you are interested in using my idea then ask me below or contact me through my email: