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My game's concept

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I have mentioned bits about my game here, but now I''m going to "spill the beans" and would really like it if you could give some feedback. Note: I''m aware that the idea might be too big to realize and currently I am only making a prototype that contains only a small amount of what I originally had in mind.

Background

The idea was originally based on John Wyndham''s "Day of the Triffids" (a post apocalyptic sci-fi novel), but if the prototype is done, I probably want to get a writer on my team to write a different story, but with the same premise. I''m not sure if it could cause copyright problems if I have the people go blind overnight like they did in the book. Besides most people being blind, another element in the story is the triffids -- walking plants that suddenly started to gather together and hunt for humans. Their poison is fatal. I will probably replace the triffids with non-fantasy animals.

The concept of the game''s story

As most people suddenly go blind, there is great chaos all over the world, especially in big cities. Many people die on the streets. Some sighted try to help the blind, but there are too many of the blind and diseases are beginning to spread. People will gather into groups and move out of the cities to form new communities. All those groups have different beliefs and visions for the future. Some of them start fighting with each other. This is similar to the world in games like Fallout. You play a single character, with the goal at first being to survive.

Gameplay

The main idea for how the game would play was to take the best elements of many different genres and mix it all together in a way that allows many different play styles. From this follows the current working title "Melting Pot". There would be
  • Adventure game style puzzles and dialogues.
  • RPG -- quests and character developement
  • Real-time strategy -- different factions fighting each other
  • Tactical combat -- some quests & missions would involve this
  • Vehicle sim -- freedom to travel the world by any vehicle (but vehicles would be less present than in GTA)
  • Empire building -- build your factions base. Technology trees.
  • Sims -- build and decorate your home.
  • Career & dynasty building -- start as a hobo, end up as a leader of a faction. Get married and continue to play as your offspring when you die.
  • Mad Max -- build your own crazy postapocalyptic vehicles
  • Meet characters and events familiar from classic literature such as the reincarnations of Don Quijote and Sancho Panza.
  • ...
How would all those different genres work together? I don''t know certainly yet, but don''t think of those things listed above as different genres forced into one game. This game would not be defined by any current genres. I list them only for comparision. The game would combine all those things naturally. Imagine that you are playing an RPG, but instead of travelling by foot all the time, you have the option of riding a horse, a boat, driving a car, or flying a helicopter. And you can control those vehicles yourself as in any vehicle sim game. Or you can just click on your destination on the world map and watch your progress there (accelerated time). If something happens on the way, your progress on the map stops and you are thrown back to the main view. Be a lone wolf doing odd jobs or become a member of a faction and start commanding others as your rank rises. Start managing your factions base (this is where the empire building / RTS part kicks in), defend it against other factions. Or just find a lonely house in a distant place by a lake and rise your family there. Grow crops and farm animals. Once in a while, drive to the nearest factions headquarters, wait for the cover of night and loot their base for any supplies you need.

The prototype

I know this sounds too big and difficult to develop, and I''m not trying to at the moment. The prototype that I''m currently designing and developing consists of much less:
  • A small world with a tiny part of a suburb of a big city where you start from, some nature (with roads), and two small bases of two different factions.
  • One controllable vehicle -- a car.
  • Some adventure style puzzles and RPG style quests.
  • Various interactions with NPC characters.
  • No combat (or very little of it)
  • No RTS / empire building / dynasty building
What do you think of this idea? Is it too crazy? Do you like it? Do you dislike it?

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i like the gameplay features. they''re much in line with what i''m attempting. the concept is a little...uhhhh...but it could work, given some fleshing out.

but yeh...the gameplay, i really like those things being thrown together. takes aways alot of silly glass walls (like, why the hell can''t i shoot down airplanes in gta? why can''t i burn down buildings in dungeon siege?). i find the combining of these features to be much more natural than games that separate them. to paraphrase, why would i bother running, if i can''t hide?

one feature that you may want to consider is a limited in-game editor, for rts, sim, and empire building purposes. this way, when you tell your subordinates to, say, build a church, you won''t necessarily get the same church you got the last time you had them build one (unless that is what you want). one of my ideas was to include some basic editor in the game itself, as part of the control panel interface. the editor could be given basic modeling controls (creating, extruding, and texturing polys should just about cover it), and the player could then create "blueprints", which could be implemented immediately, or saved for future use. i have yet to see such a feature implemented (although, admittedly, i haven''t played that many games), but, if done correctly, such a feature could greatly improve the interactivity the game.

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You''re right, the concept (story) needs a lot of work and I could probably use a totally different story.
It''s just that I had this idea after reading the book (2 years ago) and by limiting my fantasy/imagination about the game''s story (because the book''s story is very open-ended), I was able to fantasize about the gameplay a lot. However I think the concept got a bit too attached to the book''s story. I''ll have to detach it by abstracting the gameplay more (does that sentence make sense?). And then either come up with a story on my own or find a writer.

And yes, I have thought about an ingame editor (for building blueprints). All the buildings would of course be RPG style (enterable, full of stuff), not like in Warcraft or Sim City. Any building''s (and room''s) functionality could be changed. For example you could set up your base in a huge castle or in a small village.

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I had similiar idea (this is my standard phrase of Fantasy strategy/RPG game. My idea was that some minor gods wanted to come greater but there could be only one . So every lesser god selected one person to control. And it would control one of his/her offspring.

Empire building would be in significant role as would be race and religion settlements.

I think that your concept is interesting. You bravely combine different genres. Just make sure that there are enough rewards at every part. If not every one is just building their own cars

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I''m in the same boat you are. I''m working on a game where I have more of the gameplay figured out than the actuall storyline. However, since mine doesn''t involve any RTS empire building, I figure this idea (which I just got reading your post) will be more appropriate for your game type than mine (FPS + RPG).

Your player''s country (real or imaginary) has been conqured by another [think Terminator + Escape from New York]. The citizens, who have no intentions of going out quietly and gracefully, form into seperate rebel factions. Some are political, some militiant, some survivalist, others peacefully trying to deal with their conquerers. These factions are all at war with a common enemy, but some also with each other while others are allied. The player can make different allies and enemies each time they play the game and choose which their school of resistance will be.

Hope this helps. Please leave the money in my swiss security account (as if I had one) :D

Good luck with your game!

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