Death is useful
The theme immediately made me think of a game I played recently,the player has an unlimited number of men, the death of each one allows for further progress of the next. Jumping in the middle of a spike pit provides the next man with a platform to jump on. The puzzles get tougher as the game goes on.
I get the feeling this is a similar idea for everyone else. I'd like to do something a bit different and maybe incorporate the idea that death is useful to one person not just the next person in an endless stream of people. Also, this isn't the best fit for my current skills and resources.
The Game Idea
You are the nefarious leader of a party of adventurers, there are dungeons to explore and treasure to loot. But you want all of the loot, it would be useful if your fellow adventurers died before they got back out.
My idea is is for a top down puzzle game set in a series of increasingly puzzling dungeons. Each level (dungeon) requires the player to get a minimum amount of loot. The more adventurers you get killed on the way means the more loot for you. The party is of a fixed composition, if you kill all the adventurers before the end of the dungeon, you'll get stuck, or have to back out and fail.
The player will move the party, and can send out an adventurer (if there are any left), they each have a set of skills and weaknesses, which you can combine to solve the puzzles in the dungeon. If they manage to return to the party, or you collect them, you can reuse them. Whilst on their own, they will be at the mercy of dungeon monsters and can fall foul of various traps.
There will be 3 types of adventurer:
Warrior - Warriors can not be beaten in combat, they will engage monsters on site. They will block enemies they encounter keeping your party safe. They will kill their foe after a short while and continue on.
Rogue - Rogues can avoid any trap. They will head directly for any loot they see. They can unlock doors they encounter.
Wizard - Wizards can power magic artefacts.They run immediately from monsters.
I currently have two basic traps:
Pit Trap - Will kill a single adventurer, but then any one can traverse it.
Spike/Rock Fall Trap - Will kill a single adventurer and then block the path, changing the direction your adventurers go.
? - I feel another trap will be needed to round things off.
Three types of monsters should provide enough variety. Various speeds and toughness should allow for more varied puzzles.
The environment will contain a few interact-able objects and special terrain pieces:
Toggle/one time switches. Magic bridges, teleporters.
The puzzles will hopefully be a combination of determining the correct adventurer, order, and timing to send characters. As well as killing them off at the right time to make the most money.
I created a very basic mock up to get some ideas thought through. It isn't very good but was part of my thought process: