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melvosh

Player Control

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I was reading my design doc for a iso game that where making and the part about what the player can control came up. Just to add some background first is that in the game there is no resource control or advancement in technology in the game. You start and your "side" is fully laden with equipment ready to go. Basically its like you have been placed into a war 100 years from when had started. That being said my main question would players prefer to play as "one" character and have the AI control your other troops. That way u could watch him grow etc etc Or would they rather be in general control of the whole army picking and choosing what each troop does? Thus having no single character advancement. I guess thats more like a C&C style of play. Or perhaps have a single charcter that you can advance and still be in control of the rest in a general way? I know all of it could rely on what style of game it is but the game is played in real time and the planned battles or "quests" will vary in size. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Cheers Adam

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"would players prefer to play as "one" character and have the AI control your other troops."

=> RPG-Like

"Or would they rather be in general control of the whole army picking and choosing what each troop does?"

=> RTS-Like

"Or perhaps have a single charcter that you can advance and still be in control of the rest in a general way?"

=> Hmmm... Battlezone like ?

If your game is a RTS, the first choice would probably not be a good idea. My favourite gameplay for a real time strategy game would be the third one; when your units are not completely stupid and are able to act on their own. In Battlezone it was really well done, you were able to give orders to each unit/group of units. But perhaps this kind of gameplay would suit better to a 3D RTS. If it''s ISO, I''d probably choose the classic way (C&C like).

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your mentioning fully developed tech trees got me thinking

what if there are a series of freindly bases near each other. you only control one. each base is limited on what it can produce.

to get the benefit of unit types complementing each other, you have to agree to form one of your attacks in cooperation with one of the others who is interested in the same kind of approach ("oi, mate, ive got extra snipers. let''s make a deal").

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Thats interesting walkingcarcass as i think that could actually work in a way. At the moment the idea is that the player recieves his orders and missions from the main base so the game never stops so to speak as u can fully enter the main base much like the old game UFO enemy unknown where u sorta could do the same at one point.

Maybe perhaps i could have smaller bases at the war zones that u get dropped to where u can set up your team etc etc thats going into battle. And each base has certain equipment that others do not, sorta like some bases are to far away from home to recieve regular cargo dropped to them etc etc. Hrmm that could even be a mission now that i think of it to deliver supplies...hrmm

Thank for the replies...

Cheers
Adam

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I''m a HUGE fan of games like Commandos: Behind Enemy Lines, so thats where some of my ideas are stemming from... but I''ve always wanted to see an RTS where you command multiple units with DIFFERENT skills, and those units make up a very small element (say of 4 to 20 individual units) that have RPG-lite elements of advancement. No I''m not thinking of Warcraft 3, for one thing I think Warcraft 3 totally sucked, and part of that was the fact that your characters, while they can advance, are just as expendable as ever. If you build up one particular hero unit, then he dies, then "oh well."

I''m thinking something like this: Each unit can advance through the military ranks relevant to your world, and the more he advances the more refined his skillset. Using a US-military-like advancement format, eacho of your "commandos" (or whatever you want to call them) might start out as a "private" with very broad skills (which each private has in common) and then advance them all the way up to Seargent and eventually even General, depending on how well each individual unit performed; and as each unit advances, you can spend earned skill points in specific skills, making that unit more specialized. Units that always hung back wouldn''t get as many leadership points nor as many kills, therefore they wouldn''t get to specialize as much and would become more like grunts (which are also important in a battle, though perhaps thats not a very politically correct way to say it!). Oh and one more thing; each mission should have objectives (obviously) and those objectives should require a specific number of units survive. Earlier missions, for instance, might require that at least "8 out of 10" of your soldiers survive for the mission to be considered a success; while later on, in harder, more suicidal missions, it might be "4 out of 10". Of course, the sooner you lose those men, the harder it is to keep them alive in following missions. So if you lose all but the required 4 men on Mission 8, Mission 9 is just that much harder. Therefore at the end of each mission you can make the decision to advance to the next mission with what you have, or replay the mission and try and keep more of your guys alive.

Just an idea. :D


Brian Lacy
Smoking Monkey Studios

Comments? Questions? Curious?
brian@smoking-monkey.org

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