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MindWipe

Need help to get challange into game(help with design!!)

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Okey, so I''ve began making a simcity type game. Well, it''s a little different. This is more like a mars colony game. Story in short: "Mankind at war, you flee to build colony" Okey, so I''ve been working really alot on it. And though I''d begin with the hard part. I''ve now got the basic design, all graphics(except menu), really good UI and in general a good working system. So, what''s my problem!? I don''t know where exactly to receive some challange. The basic design of the game work like: - People need houses and food(from farms) - Houses/Farms need money to be built and power to hold - Powerplants needs money to be built and people to operate So I get this circle: ...Food->People->Power->Food->People... Works pretty well I think. But. My problem now is that there''s no damn challange! You build a house get more people, get more money buy more farms & powerplants. There''s just no way you can loose!? What would be the best idea to solve this!? Thanks, MindWipe

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Where do the people get water from? I''d imagine they''ll need some sort of ice mining set up in order to get water out of the ice caps or the frozen tundra. There''s another utility that requires both manpower and machine power. What about oxygen for that matter? There''ll need to be suitable life support systems in place.

Then of course, what do the people do to keep themselves occupied when they aren''t working? How do you stop them from getting claustrophobic and going on mad, psychopathic rampages as the close quarters of a martian colony starts to get to them?

Then there''s natural disasters such as dust storms, landslides and cave ins. Plus you could always have little green men to come along and mess things up.

Also, you could add a goal - rather than just build a thriving colony, perhaps you''re trying to terraform the planet? So you will need to spend resources on terraforming projects as well as the basic stuff needed to keep everyone alive.

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quote:
Original post by Sandman
Where do the people get water from? I''d imagine they''ll need some sort of ice mining set up in order to get water out of the ice caps or the frozen tundra. There''s another utility that requires both manpower and machine power. What about oxygen for that matter? There''ll need to be suitable life support systems in place.

Then of course, what do the people do to keep themselves occupied when they aren''t working? How do you stop them from getting claustrophobic and going on mad, psychopathic rampages as the close quarters of a martian colony starts to get to them?

Then there''s natural disasters such as dust storms, landslides and cave ins. Plus you could always have little green men to come along and mess things up.

Also, you could add a goal - rather than just build a thriving colony, perhaps you''re trying to terraform the planet? So you will need to spend resources on terraforming projects as well as the basic stuff needed to keep everyone alive.




Thanks!

Heh, well, the game is actualy named "Arctic Colony" (covers blown!)

But yeah, natural disasters is good idea! And I''m thinking healthcare would be good otherwice people would die or disieases would spread. I already have a system up and running that gives every person an age and you need to be > 15years to pay taxes.

I actualy wanted you to have "workhours" instead of money, but it only confuses the player I think.

/Mindwipe

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I like the natural disasters, but are you going for the strictly SimCity crowd or the more aggressive types?

If the latter, then we end up in the RTS area and you can consider things like rival colonies encroaching on territory, chasing off bandits, or if you don''t mind a little creative/sci-fi license you can add native creatures/flora that might be hostile to settlers.

If the colony is sponsored, there might be a time limit or quotas they have to meet. Perhaps they''re there to mine natural resources, and the sponsor won''t fund the project unless they feel it is profitable. Setting up mining operations, dealing with workers, corporate sabotage, rival mining companies...tons of options.

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what about immagration/emmagration, most people don''t want to live in the artic so the player could have to get them there and keep them there.

maintanice you could have building breakdown quickly maybe a diffrent levels of buildings. Tempory - last a couple of months, longterm - good for a year or two, permant - lasts for several years.

Also give the colony a objective maybe its to conduct reserch and so you need labratories and manpower perhaps there are even reserch resources that the player has to locate inorder to conduct research. Adding an exploring part to the game.

Also where does the money come from? Does the amount increase and decrease? Do you have to pay workers? Purchase critical supplies that you can''t get at the colony?
If money is based on the amount of research done last month and you have to pay workers the came could potentily be very challenging. Or maybe you have factories where you produce verius arctic brand goods for resale around the globe.



-----------------------------------------------------
Writer, Programer, Cook, I''m a Jack of all Trades
Current Design project
Chaos Factor Design Document

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quote:
Original post by MindWipe
Story in short: "Mankind at war, you flee to build colony"


Well I''d basically have it where you have to 1) keep everyone alive with power, food, water, air... 2) keep everyone occupied with jobs, so plenty of work 3) keep everyone happy with entertainment (so far just like simcity) 4) but also the risk of war affecting mars. The need to build an army to defend. While if you want to stay away from the RTS style you could just build the army base area and let the computer simulate a fight or two. Then it''s your job to repair what was destroyed.

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Being in such a harsh environment, you have equipment failure, bad weather, disease, morale etc. The challenge then becomes putting in contingencies and shifting priorities and resources correctly in response to the crisis at hand. Something as trivial as which way you face a building can determine how efficient it is in the cold wind. Sometimes resources might dry up completely and you have to relocate to survive. Sometimes all your options are bad so you have to choose the lesser evil and no matter which your citizens will be upset.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
If possible, try making it so that each person likes a different form of food, and you can produce different kinds. If they don''t get there food, they get angry. To much anger and people will turn to crime.

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Your challenge is to create an economic cycle with production and sinks. By adding additional variables to the model you are able make it more difficult to reach the end result.

Variables could include:
Productivity of Farms
Productivity of People
Density of People - More food needed
Weather
Technology used on Farms
Fuel for Technology
Disease to Farm Stock

Also, you may create more complex trees to the end game such as different techonology trees to produce crops, faster or with a better yield.

Just map it out on paper

www.gamedogma.com

[edited by - MojoHammer on November 22, 2003 10:41:14 PM]

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