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Using dragons in a real-time strategy game

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What''s up, people? I was thinking of game ideas recently, and I came up with an idea. I love dragons, and thought that a game with only dragons would be cool. I thought of starting out with just a basic dragon available and later wings, fire, ice, and other "evolutions" would be available to have new breeds of dragons at your disposal. I would like to have any feedback you have. Ideas, comments, disagreements, whatever! I would like to have some opinions. Thanks.

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I too think dragons are cool,
but making a game entirly populated with dragons?
Would they talk ect? It might get a bit boring.
I would suggest using other mystical creatures as well, e.g. Griffins, Leviathans, Giant eagles ect.

Also, check out my game project on DX++ (link below) it has some rather good dragon drawings by me.

DX++ The DirectX Programming Site

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I actually like the idea of an all dragon game. Perhaps involve small towns of people that have a "fear factor" towards a particular dragon. Your brood would continually grow and evolve as you get your treasures from the neighboring towns'' tributes... etc. Furthermore, your soul purpose would be to beat out the other broods. You would have to face difficulties such as "heroes" who challenge your dragons or maybe a revolt of a city... and of course the opposing brood which wishes to take your cities (and the maidens and tributes that they give their brood). I really DO like this idea. Let me know if you want more ideas or if I''m totally off-scope. I would help with your project but I''m involved in a project already and am strapped with time...

In any case... great idea.

Enoch

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Sounds interesting. You might want to look for a bestiary as these dragon-like creatures all have specific names. I don''t know which is which off the top of my head, but to name a few: Wyverns, Drakes, and Wyrms. Also, I thought it might be worth while to differentiate between Western and Eastern types of dragons.

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I think a lot of research needs to be done in this matter... for example, maybe there is a dragon that can only come out at night? Each dragon may have an absolute weakness... etc... This idea has pretty good potential.

Enoch

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unless I am sorely mistaken, we started the categorization thing around Dungeons and Dragons. In the myths, legends and fables where dragons originated, I hardly think they bothered to classify different kinds of dragon since they never appeared in numbers. The names of the various "types" of dragon are actually just regional names, or names of individual dragons taken from various myths.

Go ahead and do the classifications if you want, but don''t think they are by any means authentic. This is the Middle Age people... PER Rennaisance. Nobody even bothered classifying REAL animals, much less imaginary ones.


=====
Are you aware that the people who bring you television actually refer to it openly as "programming?"

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Freakshow,

that's not the point of whether or not they were named in the olden days... For gameplay issues it would be a lot easier to differentiate a Red Fire-breathing dragon and a Red Melee dragon as names (pulling these from my arse) than a dragon and a dragon. See the point?

Now, I can see hiding these names too... Maybe just giving dragons names and not knowing their true abilities? That could be interesting. Who knows... *shrug*

Enoch



Edited by - EnochDagor on July 17, 2000 7:48:32 PM

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Thanks for the great feedback! I was trying to get the details fine-tuned (like talking, towns, riders, etc...) so you guys have been a big help! Keep on responding. EnochDagor, those are some really good ideas. Thanx. And Freakshow, I didn''t intend for this game to be "politically correct" with the history of dragons. This IS just a game, you know.

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I know I''m still sort of Ogre Battle praising, but I think the game applies here for part of this post.

I don''t know if anybody remembers the old SNES Nintendo game Ogre Battle, but it had interesting things with dragons.

First of all, all the dragons had different pictures so you could tell what kind of dragon they were. So, even without the name showing, it should be fairly obvious (hey that''s a black dragon...)

Second, the dragons evolved into different forms based on their path in life. "Good" Dragons became Silver Dragons, and then later evolved into Gold Dragons if still "Good", and later still became Platinum Dragaons if they were really "Good"

All that aside, I think their should be a dragon for all the elements. A game populated with dragons has got to have a large variety of dragons. Maybe even have some hidden types. Have Thunder Dragons and mystical Lava Dragons and stuff like that. And don''t just say ***** dragon (i.e. Black dragon, Gold dragon, Silver dragon, Thunder Dragon, Blue Dragon), more interesting names would be good too, like... the Triyars, or something. Oh, and it would be cool if the player could be any of those dragons that he ran into. Oh course, if a player could be any dragon, you would have to have some way of balancing out the different races of dragons, or else every single player is going to be the powerful Hurricane Dragon, and no one will touch your well thought out Pepple Dragon.

Note that my post seems to assume that this game will be an RPG. Now an adventure game or a Platform game WOULD work... but... somehow a game with a civiliation of dragons and evolutions and different forms of dragons and stuff like that just seems to shout out RPG. And if you, or somebody, does make it an RPG, the different races should be thought out, don''t just have the black dragons who spit acid, and the red dragons who spit fire, and leave it at that. Give a little more detail.

Blada blada blada, hope my post was helpful.

-Blackstream

"See you later, I'm going to go grab a few Bytes. I'm so thirsty, I could drink a whole data stream."

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Hmmmm, hello it''s me again.

Actually I think that a RTS works good too, espcially since if you have units, then a player could experiment with all sorts of different types of dragon, instead of playing a game as a silver dragon, quitting, then playing the game as a black dragon...

I still think, though, that thought should placed into the creation of the races.

Lets see, more input....
Since it is hard for dragons to build anything (no thumbs) they would probably have to live in caves or trees or something. Unless you made a race of dragons that had a thumb...

The rest of the game depends on how barbaric or how civilized you want these dragons to be. You can have complex cultures, with ideals, rituals, and stuff like that, or you have have the Neaderthal, get all the knights loot and get everyone elses loot too, type of dragon. Heck, I think that some races of dragons should be civilized, and others should be barbaric.

I think that maybe the dragon should have a mortal enemy they always fight with, like the Wyverns or something. Hmm and maybe magic casting dragons, and then the brute strength dragons, and then the fast agile dragons...

I guess when I''m trying to say in the midst of all my rambling is that diversity between the different races of dragon should be done.

blah blah blah, hope I helped you out some more.

-Blackstream

"See you later, I'm going to go grab a few Bytes. I'm so thirsty, I could drink a whole data stream."

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You all seem to have this under control, so I''m just going to have a swing at freakshow.

"Authentic" Ummm, dragons aren''t real (note the present tense in case someone dig''s one up tomorrow) Dear Mr Freakshow you appear to be having some trouble telling the difference between you imagination and reality. You appear to have developed a ''wanker'' defect. Please stay on the line and one of our support personal will get to you as soon as possible, To try and help you fix you neck top box.


As Mr Cup always says,
''I pretend to work. They pretend to pay me.''

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What about start the game of Dune style where you choose your family (of Dragons). Different strengths for different families of dragons etc. It sounds like a very fresh idea for an RTS :-). Good one!

I love Game Design and it loves me back.

Our Goal is "Fun"!

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Some more thoughts that I had...

Things to think about:

1) It was already mentioned to have a "family" of dragons. I agree with this. Most games pan out great if there is a definite line between sides. (case in point: C&C had GDI and NOD, Starcraft had Zerg, Protoss, and Terran, etc...) In your case, maybe a pure blood wyrm group? Maybe it''s divided by good and evil. That is something that needs to be balanced out during the game balancing phase but needs to be planned on now.

2) Hehe, Thumbs. hehe. Anyway, it brings up a good point. How does the brood interact with the world? What is the form of "money"? For example, you terrorize a town with your brood. And you have a shapeshifting dragon (common if I recall correctly) that can mix within the town''s people and convince them to offer the dragons certain items (money, maiden''s, etc..). Furthermore, you can use some form of mind control spell that works similar to charm in EQ. Maybe when you get a maiden, you can turn her into a mistress of some sort (trying hard not to steal from Dungeon Keeper)
In any case, the real point of all this is: how does the brood grow? Where do more dragons come from and where do you research the upgrades? Maybe a spawning pool type idea like Starcraft? Who knows. But that is a major part of the game to learn.

3) What are the dragon types and their abilities? How many abilities can a dragon have? Are they static or can the player mix and match them at run-time? For example, can I design a dragon? Maybe take a fire-breathing component and mix it with a chameleon component. Maybe take an ice-breather and mix it with a charm and fear component (once again taking from EQ... namely Vox, tho, I don''t think she charms). A healing dragon? Etc...

4) What are the roles of the broods within the realm? Would it be beneficial for one brood that is labeled a "good" brood to be a defender of a realm while an "evil" brood uses the methods of terrorism and charm and deceit to steal corrupt and destroy the realm? These things are important to know...

5) Since this is dealing with dragons, are their buildings? Or is it simply a cave?


Anyway, thought I''d get some wheels turning.

Enoch

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wow! what great ideas.. thought I would throw a few out as well.. going with the idea of different types of Dragons as well as families of dragons, why not create families of dragons? Basically, depending on which dragons you breed, that will determine the type of dragon that is "created" into the family.. like a Fire Dragon breeding with an Earth Dragon could create a blend of the 2. Basically, you would raise each dragon, then send it off to find its own home, where it would horde gold and terrorize the locals. Multiplayer would rock, as you could breed your dragon with the dragon of one of your friends, creating even new varieties of Dragons, as well as battle your dragon against another...

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This idea sounds familiar to me... where have I heard or read about it before? hrm... perhaps this URL might bring back a few memories http://www.lionhead.com ... Ahh! Black and White!...

Nah seriously folks, I''m not dissing the idea but it sounds eerily similar to black and white, where you control a large creature and get it to evolve and the landscape changes to suit your style of play etc. But I reckon if pulled off right it would be cool... the dragon idea that is.

THe things that I would try and include would be the ability of your dragon to grow and develop, or family group to grow and develop. that way over time you might be able to change your brood of black evil dragons to a more happy red fire breathing earth dragons of sorts...

Just throwing ideas at you, sorry if they hurt...

Dæmin
(Dominik Grabiec)
sdgrab@eisa.net.au

CyberPunk RPG
http://www.eisa.net.au/~sdgrab/index.html

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I think an rpg style game with a dragon as the player''s character would be cool. you may be a nice or malicous dragon. you could raid farms and villages, or you could help people out (if they dont kill you first). you could have other monsters too, which you could deal with however you want.

just a thought...

<(o)>

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Hey, i don't usually work with this sort of stuff but i have a suggestion. To add realism i would suggest you study different types of current animals, such as dogs (wild) and see they're differences- strengths, weaknesses, what they eat/ when they sleep/ stuff like that...
i think the result would be much more convincing then.

-mike

my ² cents

Edited by - thr33d on July 19, 2000 5:40:48 PM

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adastra: Dragonheart as a game? Well, that would be interesting...

- DarkMage139
++++++++++++++++
I can do things, things you never knew,
I can change your world if you only knew.

I can do miracles if you want me to.
Anything is possible, I'll prove it to you.

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ya mage, that''s what i was kinda thinkin about. but the game can be expanded a great deal more. and the primary protagonist is the dragon, not the man. the player may be able to hook up with humans though...that might be cool

<(o)>

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You might want to check out "Council of Wyrms" boxed set by TSR(wizards of the coast now). Its rules for playing as dragons. I havn''t played it but it might give you some ideas. Only costs about $20 bucks.

ECKILLER

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I just wanted to mention that the original post stated that the game would be a RTS... usually RTS games include several dozens of units. One dragon was not the point of my posts. I was stating those ideas for multiple dragons under one player. Why should the amount of detail be limited to a single entity, in this case a dragon... in Black and White it is some other thing. In any case, just wanted to point this out.

Enoch

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A game of only dragons is actually what i''m working towards in all my programming endeavors. Mine won''t be an RTS, but it will involve lots of stuff mentioned here (and i thought of it before reading your posts, so nanner nanner naaannr ). Right now however, i''m trying to develop a good engine with which to make the game.

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Where did the creator of the thread say it was to be an RTS? I don''t see that in the original post anywhere...

This is a pretty interesting idea though, so I guess I''ll chuck in one of my own ideas for everyone to think about.

Everyone is talking about using RTS and RPG style gameplay... so here''s an alternative... how about an RPG-Wargame? I''m not sure if I can think of any good examples of existing games to describe what I mean, so I''ll try to describe what I''m thinking as best I can.

The main elements that this combination utilizes from RPG''s would be:
1) The player controls a main character, perhaps a few others (not many)
2) The methods of character advancement
3) Plot and storylines of varying sizes effect the world which react to the player''s actions

From wargames:
1) The players main character(s) have the ability to control large numbers of NPC allies/soldiers/etc. (depending on type of game).
2) Warfare between various factions (duh) - but with RPG aspects added in, such as leader personalities, and dynamic plotlines
3) Strategy and tactics, not merely number crunching to figure out which side has the best equipment/skill
4) Easy integration of multiplayer... you could even go further than most wargames (and RPGs) go by having differing levels of command for each player. ie., you might have one player acting as commander (main char), another player on the same team acting as a general (secondary char?); these players would feel more like they''re playing a wargame than an RPG.
Another player on an opposing side that plays a spy, an assassin, a hero, or whatever (use imagination) that "feels" more like he''s playing an RPG than a wargame.

If it was designed well, a player could even change roles at will simply by taking steps to do so. For example, if a player has been relying mostly on his main character''s abilities (main characters would potentially be very strong in this case), if he decided that he''d rather hire/build/recruit NPC support he can do so. This would in effect transform the game into more of a wargame than an RPG, or vise versa.

Now that I''ve explained the basic idea I''ve thought of a game that is slightly similar in one aspect... called Warsong (for Genesis or something). The similarity is that the generals are much stronger than the troops and are by themselves a small army (you could play and win the game without even using armies if you do it right).

I still can''t think of any games that have the flexibility that I''m attempting to describe here... there probably is a few but, who knows.

Anyway, maybe this helped stir up some new ideas for someone, at least. On a side note, I''m looking to get involved with a project similar to what I just described (or tried to describe anyway...). I''m a C++ programmer that can do some OOP, general 2D graphics (especially interface graphics), and basic 3D graphics. So if this sounds at all interesting to a few people...

Maybe I''ll post this on another thread (probably should have, heh), but I posted here because I think it''d work in your case. It is just a rough idea that I need to brush up some but hopefully I got the point across.

===========================================

As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.

-Albert Einstein

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Doh!

oops!

===========================================

As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.

-Albert Einstein

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