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Fun little RPG based on spell casting with Pokemon like elements...

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Okay so I was sitting here with a nice code base capable of a 2d game on the pocketPC with the ability to have a gesture system...i thought a mage spell casting game would be great. So i talked to a friend, posted here to get ideas...a few weeks later still nothing I came up with (even with the help of others) has sat well with me to sound like a fun and compeling game, though through all the suggestions there were some running themes: Magic points: bad idea, no one seems to like the arbritariryness of this..so neigh on the magic points. Modular: a lot of people seemed to think a modular based system was really good...i.e. use different gestures to build up different spells... This system while interesting doesnt do it for me because: Anyone can play around in a battle to learn a new gesture...just by drawing on the screen and bingo they cast a spell...I have no idea how to solve this and thusly dont want to get into this way of doing things. So how to solve the magic problem of a magic based game without any real good ideas? It should be mentioned the game takes place ina dungeon u explore...the dungeon is simple, a bunch of squares, and clicking on an adjacent room than ur in takes u to the next room, where u might find treasure, or a monster. So now as we speak an idea is brewing, how about your mage being just a mage that has the ability to capture and train familiars...then to get the familiars to attack or defend, or heal you do this by drawing on the game screen (during a battle) the required gestures to preform such a casting by your familiar. Does this sound like an okay idea? and Familiars who are in battle gain levels, upon getting levels they can get new gestures to cast, and the familiars "change title" (sorta like evolving as they do in pokemon) What sets this aside from pokemon? Well the gesture system for one, you have to memorize how to string gestures together to do an attack for a familiar u have in battle. There would be items in the game, like perhaps spell books that teach specific familiars differnt abilities. I want the dungeon to play a part in the game, it would be again a bunch of squares, as u explore it, the squares are replaced with little icons of a room, with x many exits into it, showing you where in the dungeon you can click and go next... The dungeons will be randomly generated. Familiars will have a school, and or an element associated with them...making some familiars more powerful against others etc... the dungeon will eventually have a stair room, perhaps garded with a boss that will take you down lower... Then i want there to be special rooms strewn throught various levels of the dungeon that are say: shops, shrines, and realestate...perhaps with enough battles, prestige, and gold you can actually purchase realestate that gives you kudos, bragging rights and special real-estate purchases give special familiars special powers....? How does all this sound folks? Any ideas, critiques...pitfalls? more ways to make even more unique. I am trying to follow a strict spec, since the game will go on pocket pc, it will need certain requirements: Like for instance: It must be pick up and play fun. Play must be enjoyable in 5 minutes of play, or 5 hours of play. The resources of the game should not be to expanse...limited animations, limited sprites...since the game (Even movement on the dungeon) is turnbased, then limited animations should be feasable. and other such requirements. So that is why I am looking to make just a fun romp of a game. Something fun to pick up and play for a short while or a long while that is hopefully a little different, and what isnt different is quite proven and fun. Thanks for humoring me, -Shane

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Wow, that's pretty ambitious. You sound like you know what you're doing, and you say you have some code already, which bodes very well for your project.

I advise you to shy away from capturing and training beasties. Your magic system seems to be the highlight and focus of your engine, and throwing in a "collecting" element might detract from that.

Instead, incorporate the familiars into the magic system itself. Either summon them, or make them into metaphysical totems that aren't really in the battle, but function as deities. Instead of turning your "Timber Wolf" into a "Werewolf", have the "Wolf Spirit" favor your character and allow him access to more powerful forest/wolf/shadow magic, or whatever, that critter manifests.

That way, you can use the gesture system, but random scribbles might wind up being an arrogant demand for power to which you aren't entitled, and hurt your piety rating with a given spirit totem. Acquisition of items and real estate could help with this, since having a little effigy or restoring an ancient temple could put you right in the money with the corresponding demigod.

You could even balance them against each other, so that the Salamander and the Ondine don't really get along, and to garner favor with one you must risk the displeasure of the other.

These are all the suggestions I can think of. I hope some of them helped you out, and I hope your game goes well.

[edited by - Iron Chef Carnage on October 6, 2003 4:33:35 PM]

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