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Muzlack

storyline help please

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Ok, my friend and I are making an RPG. We started it a long time ago in qbasic (haha) and we finally decided to do it in c++ like 3 years later. Now, we have known this whole time the basic storyline of the game, and a few weeks ago we wrote the storyline in our design document. At the time it seemed really good but I opened it up again the other day, and man! It''s horrible! So maybe I could get a little help getting just the basics of a storyline from you guys and we could build off that. Here''s our basic idea. 1- There is a wizard whose whole town was destroyed by the king''s (un named) army. They were afraid of the mages and destroyed the whole town except this one wizard was the only one that survived (reason?) 2- The wizard somehow makes the leader of the army (un named) start a slow transformation into this beast that he controls, so to everyone back at the castle, it seems like he''s losing his sanity. (It''s kind of like lord of the rings, I''m pretty sure Golam was a human and he became so corrupted by this ring that he turned into that thing) It''ll be kind of like that. So somehow he becomes possessed by this wizard. 3-For some reason, the king suspects something and summons Arean to investigate and finds out about it. 4- He eventually travels to this city where the mages lived and finds out that what happened to the captain is happening to everyone (maybe a poisoned water supply?) and the wizard will soon have an army capable of world domination. 5-finds a stone that has the power to grant a wish if taken to this sacred tree. 6-Somewhere along this journey, Arean also becomes infected by whatever is taking control of everyone. He slowly is becoming one of them. 7-At the end of the game, (You have to picture this) Arean runs for the tree and just as he makes his wish to stop all this, he transforms into one of these creatures and dies. Ok, I know that all sounds really stupid, but if it can be tied together correctly in CAN turn into a really cool game. I can really imagine the ending where Arean''s companions yell at him to make the wish while they both are dying trying to hold back the wizard and Arean dies just as he''s making the wish. Just the whole concept of killing himself to save the world thing is pretty neat. SOO, could I get a little help tying this together? Maybe just a sequence events that lead up to this and makes sense?

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This is just my opinion, and others would probably totally disagree with me, but, I don''t like games where the main character dies at the end. After working so hard to get through a game, I don''t like the story to make me feel like it was a waste, because if the game''s story is a good one, the player will become attached to the characters. If you kill the character, you kill the player''s attachment to the game. Lufia 2 did this, and I found it kind of frustrating.

Now, this kind of thing can be turned into motivation if used in the right points in a game, like Final Fnatasy 7, when Aeris died, I really wanted to beat Sephiroth even more; or in Chrono Trigger, it helped the player to focus on some other characters a while until you found out how to go back in time and save Chrono.

Metal Gear Solid didn''t kill off a main character, but I really thought it was going to happen. This is something that not many games do today. I actually felt suspense while playing MGS. I guess the setting was dark enough to make me feel the actual danger of the place. However that game accomplished this should be used more often, since in a lot of games, dying just means reload the last save.

Wow, that was more than I intended to write! Anyway, if your still reading this, I like the story ideas (I love stories in a fantasy setting), but get some opinions on the ending before using it.

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quote:
Original post by Muzlack
It''s kind of like lord of the rings, I''m pretty sure Golam was a human and he became so corrupted by this ring that he turned into that thing


Gollum was not a Man, but a Hobbit (akin to the Stoors, in fact). The corruption part, of course, is correct.

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Well, would it make it any better knowing that you are going to die for like half the game? I think it would improve the matter. Or, lets say he does die, but I would need to come up with one of those things like on the movie casper. remember, because he did such a nice thing for that girl, he got to be alive again? something like that could work, but I had better come up with a darn good reason, cause it would just be really stupid if an angel came out of no where and gave him life.

More importantly though, these events have hardly anything to do with each other, I''d really like some help coming up with a basic storyline.

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For me, knowing the character was going to die would just make me not want to play that half of the game. And you''re right: if the character does die, you''ll need a really good reason for bringing him back to life; something that will be very beleivable in the game world.

As for the base story, it seems like you have that figured out already. Was there a specific part you wanted people''s help on?

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a couple things, why does the captain take the armies to the mage''s town, why does that last mage live, why doesn''t he just kill the commander, and how does he infect him, and just those kinds of things that make no sense, really.

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Wait, I might have it.

Two ideas: lets say a scratch from these creatures causes you to be infected, which would be perfect for my idea. Lets say the whole game, you think arean''s wish will be to stop the wizard, but rather, he goes back in time to when he got scratched by one of these monsters, and killed it before it had a chance. Then, he continues through the game again (you won''t have to play again) and still has a wish to destroy the wizard.

Lets keep the idea and suppose that he got scratched by one of these monsters. Ok, when he wishes to stop the wizard, he kind of faints, and everyone thinks he''s dead. But, actually what happened is it would be like one of those old stupid fairy tales and when he killed the wizard he broke the spell off everyone, including him. I don''t know how I''d explain that in the game, but that would work.

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Well, the part about why the commander attacks the mage's town could be used to add a lot of mystery to the game. When the main character finds out that he is trying to stop a mage who was really just defending his town, you could have the character question which side is right. Some common reasons that the commander may have had could have been for power (which would make the mage appear better than your own side) or it oculd have some kind of deeper meaning in the world's history (which would extend the story's length in trying to unravel this), something like the leader of the mage's town stole something from the commander that could prove dangerous to them if used against them, so the commander attacked. The mage who lived was away from the town (on a mission, or casual trip or something), then comes back to find a ruined city, and knowing nothing of the reason, only those responsible, attacks in rage.

As for the part about how he "infects" the commander, he's a mage, so it would be very natural for him just to use magic. This would fit very easily into the story.

Hope this helps!

[edited by - Taiyou on August 18, 2002 12:55:26 PM]

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My 2 cen... uhh *counts on fingers* 20 cents

Ending: you could always do multiple endings, I always like those. If the player manages to complete the game within a certain limit - perhaps, once they find out that he''s becoming infected, they have 30mins of play time in which to use the stone to make the wish, etc... You don''t have to tell the player they''ve got 30 mins, or have any kind of counter - perhaps, at 10 mins and 20 mins the character cries out in agony or something. At the end, if they''ve managed to do it in under 30mins, then they get the good ending. Otherwise, they get the bad ending.

1
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The wizard didn''t get killed like the others because:
a) He wasn''t there, he was up in the mountains for some reason
b) He hid from them
c) He magically transported himself away. He''s a wizard, using magic to solve the problem would make sense. He''s the only one that survived because:
a) He was lucky
b) He killed off the others, either to stop them from telling where he was, or to give them a quick painless death (as opposed to the slow, torturous one at the hands of the enemy).
c) Uhh.. there is no (c)

2
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I like this. Perhaps, if you go with magical solutions to the previous problems, it drained his magic to such an extent that he can only control a single person, and only a small bit (increasing as time goes on).
For the same reasons the wizard would not be able to attack the king or his army directly. Also, the king may have wizards on his side, using magic to protect him. Their magic would be stronger than the wizard''s magic, so he wouldn''t be able to affect anyone inside the magical shield.

3
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King could recieve reports from the commander''s lieutenants, saying ''he''s acting odd.''

4
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Suggesting a poisoned water supply could be interesting - a sort of dramatic irony, depending on how you tell the story (the player character doesn''t know what''s causing it, but the player does). There''s a risk that could be frustrating for the player ("why do I have to bother investigating the river? I already *know* what''s happening..."). If you don''t reveal to the player about the wizard controlling the commander, then it could be very interesting. The player, being a seasoned RPG connisseur, is presented with dialog about a poisoned water supply. Aha, he thinks, so that is what this is all about. Then, when the real truth is discovered, it''s a surprise. My point (and yes, I do have one ) is that it''s a break from the typical RPG - making the player waste time for the sake of the story.

5
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Needs elaboration. What, he''s walking down the shop one day, and just happens to spot this magic stone on the ground, with a note explaining what it is/for/does...?

6
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Good.

7
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See beginning of post...

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