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One Button: Redux

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Rather than necroing a thread (for the second time), I''ll simply reference it. The question is what you could design with just one button for input, and there are lots of clever designs in that thread. I''ll modify the requirements somewhat, breaking things into two categories:
  1. Directions + Fire button You can use a mouse/joystick/gamepad/direction keys to control movement and a single button to initiate (or halt) a certain action.
  2. Fire button only Nothing else. See what you can come up with.
Continuing from the linked thread, two ideas are fairly obvious:
  1. Gradius-/Nemesis-/R-Type-style games: Why would you ever stop firing? You usually hold on to the primary fire button pretty much all the time, except when using your secondary (which is typically a limited resource like some sort of "megabomb"). So why not have auto-primary fire and use the fire button to trigger the "secondary"?
  2. Sports games. You can make an adequate football (soccer) game with a single fire button. You can make a perfect tennis game with a single fire button (this is my focus at the moment), especially with an analog button.
Yes, you can distinguish between digital and analog fire buttons. Tennis Game Using Analog Directions + Analog Fire Button Depression characteristics ("touch") - rate of depression, force/intensity of depression - directly vary shot characteristics. Shot stance (forehand, backhand) are selected based on position of ball relative to player. A fully extended movement (running) + fully depressed fire button with the ball some distance away yields a diving shot (watch out on concrete!) On PC keyboards/gamepads, analog control can be simulated somewhat by incrementing deflectiong/depression the longer the key/button is held down. (Feels weird, but is an acceptable workaround.) What are your ideas?

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Anyone here play Wario Ware on the GBA? I played the ''demo'' avalible via Wario World on the Gamecube and its quite addictive. Its basically this very same style of game. You get short (literally 5 to 10 seconds long) games played rapidly in sucession. You win a game, you win a point. Because they''re so fast (and so many different ones) the controls *have* to be simple so they can be picked up straight away.

Equally the Mario Party games have a similar slant. Simple, quick games with limited controls. Not the most compelling of games but good fun and cheap on the re-released games now.

Unfortunatly I''m all out of actual ideas myself right now. The best I can think of would be some kind of skiing game - gravity keeps you constantly accelerating downwards (and lets be silly and say no terminal velocity so you really do get faster and faster forever). Then just a left/right/jump controls to avoid the usual obstacles, tree, elk, etc. And no brake!

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how about a fighting game?
combos of different directional buttons with the action button makes different moves.

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quote:
Original post by AcRiD_aCiD
how about a fighting game?
combos of different directional buttons with the action button makes different moves.
Did you know that some early Street Fighter arcade cabinets had analog buttons? And consider all the special moves that require some stick jiggling to get off (fireballs, hurricane kicks, flash kicks...)

That''s a pretty good one.

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Fire button only

You control a single turret in a 2d side view of a battlefield. You''re at the center and enemies approach from both sides. You shoot in arcs a la Scorched Earth. Firing causes recoil which has two consequences: different angles = different ranges, and the only way to change the direction between left and right is to cause enough recoil to tip the barrel over 90 degrees.

Possible addition: holding the fire button before releasing it for more power which translates to greater range and more recoil.

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Well the Atari 2600 only has one input button on the controller, so that's a few hundred games that you can make.

[edited by - botman2 on March 7, 2004 12:27:03 AM]

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Morse code was mentioned in the last thread. A Morse learning program that doesn't suck would be cool (I'm too lazy to figure out those that are available - and so are most people).

I wanted to make a one button game some time ago. It was supposed to be a Tarzan swinging from trees game - in a jungle there are a series of support points. The player is tied with a rope to one of the support points. Whenever he presses the button, the rope to the current support point dissapears, and a rope to the next one appears. The player has to navigate around the jungle, avoiding all sort of obstacles (moving or not).

______________________________________

Pax Solaris

[edited by - Diodor on March 8, 2004 1:31:50 AM]

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i just say summergames!

instead of shaking your joystick from left to right just hit the one button as fast as you can. (and be sure to buy a new keyboard soon...)
-----------------------

maybe a frogger clone with a predefined path.
just hit the button at the right time to jump.
the difficulty would be that you can''t press it everytime you have a chance not to die.
(imagine a gap in the traffic on the street. you eventually have to wait long enough to jump two times or you''ll get stuck on the street)

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Jungle Hunt was sweet.

Maybe a "mindless marcher" game, like Lemmings, where one click makes your little guy change directions, and two makes him jump (just set it up so that if he changes directions twice in a row he jumps in the original direction). You could have all kinds of different mazes and obstacle courses that way.

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Most of the MSX games made by Konami I played when kid had just direction cursors and one button, including a soccer game (Konami''s Soccer) and a tennis game (Konami''s Tennis). Even more, Konami''s Pong (a ping-pong game), could be played with just the fire button! (the paddle moved automaticaly, and you could press another button to use the paddle reversed).

A more recent sample would be "Pink Panther: Pinkadelic Pursuit" for the PlayStation: there are some levels where the Pink Panther is skating, and you just had to jump. I don''t remember if you can also crouch to go faster.

theNestruo

Syntax error in 2410
Ok

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quote:
Original post by OrangyTang
Diodor: heh, sounds like Jungle Hunt. Classic game.



Wise man grbrg


How about a racing game? Continuous acceleration is implied, pushing the button turns left, letting it go turns right.

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I''m seeing lots of ideas, some good, some... not so good. While a lot of things are possible with a single button, let''s try to also make the control seem intuitive. Here''s an example:

quote:
Original post by Diodor
How about a racing game? Continuous acceleration is implied, pushing the button turns left, letting it go turns right.
I think the more intuitive variant is to rotate that game 90 degrees clockwise and turn the vehicle into a helicopter. Constant forward motion, pressing the button pulls the yoke back and raises the helicopter, releasing it causes the helicopter to descend.

Keep ''em coming!

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I recently made a pong game that uses one button:

Hold space to move to the left, let go to move to the right.

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quote:
Original post by Oluseyi
I think the more intuitive variant is to rotate that game 90 degrees clockwise and turn the vehicle into a helicopter. Constant forward motion, pressing the button pulls the yoke back and raises the helicopter, releasing it causes the helicopter to descend.


Heh, how could I forget - I wrote exactly that game for my graphical calculator (a Casio fx9750G) during many idle study periods. It was about the only game it was possible to write at any decent speed. The great thing being that you only need to draw a single pixel every frame, the rest stays as it was before.

Quite addictive. I had randomly generated 'stars' that you had to manuver around. The higher the level the more stars. It even had extra lives you could pick up and saving. Saving was possible every 5th level, you held down the button right at the start to guide the line into a 'save box' right at the bottom of the screen.

The final edge on the right also had a 'window' you had to go though. Every level it would get progressivly smaller.


Edit: also, anyone remember Micro Machines 2 on the MegaDrive? 'Party Play' had 8 people simultaneously by using a total of 4 pads. Two people shared a pad, with constant acceleration and buttons for left, right and brake.

[edited by - OrangyTang on March 8, 2004 3:41:19 PM]

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Control a one-feet robot jumper moving on a side-scrolling screen. Whenever the robot touches the ground, it jumps. Depending on the time the player kept the button pressed during the jump, the robot jumps higher or lower (think the launching of a ball in a pinball or a pool game). Again, all sort of obstacles.

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Half baked idea: trains on a network of tracks. The player controls the direction of one of the junctions (one incoming railway, more outcoming ones). Each button click changes the direction. The purpose is to create some patterns depending on the color of the cars - or something, I''m somewhat confused.

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I notice nobody''s cited rhythm games yet. There are half a dozen variants that can be generated to a basic button-pump game based just on the premise of hitting the button on time, every time.

ld

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Directions + Button (Kinda Cheating IMO)
Puzzle/RPG, where you move your avatar around in a Zelda:LttP-like game. There is no combat. Pressing ''the button'' changes to an item-selection mode where you can use the directions to select an item you have (in order to use it) or a blank square to go back to the game.

The basic idea is that you go around, talking to people, completing tasks, attaining items, and you can use the items to build things(like maybe use board then a rope to build a bridge in one place to get across), give to people to get new items/unlock areas/etc.

I kind of feel like this is cheating since the direction keys are essentially acting as extra buttons (to move the cursor on the inventory screen) and if you allow this, you might as well allow a diablo-like game where there is one button (left click, lets exclude spells) but lots of GUI buttons (inventory, stats, etc).

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RPG - pressing the button rotates the selected action - deciding how the player avatar handles the current situation.

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Diodor, holy crap that''s a sweet idea. It would be a really neat AI experiment. Just have different "behavior states" and cycle between them with a simple click. It would be like adjusting the emotional balance of your character. If he''s locked in a room, you put him in McGuyver mode. If he''s getting shot at and there''s a rifle nearby, put him in Rambo mode. If he''s in a bar with hot chicks, put him in James Bond mode.

Awesome idea. really, you could just simplify it so that it would be a simple explore/fight/hide system, and put him in a little side-scolling platform world, like Blackthorne.

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quote:
Original post by Diodor
RPG - pressing the button rotates the selected action - deciding how the player avatar handles the current situation.


Hah! Sounds like those "Lone Wolf" or "Choose Your Own Adventure" books, but snazzier Now that brings me back... ah, sweet nostalgia

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I was Lone Wolf for Halloween in sixth grade. I got kicked out of the school party because I carried an actual bow and arrows and my (fake) sword was made out of steel. I was so looking forward to that pinata...

I''ve been thinking about a hybrid between the Lone Wolf system and Dragon Slayer. You could have "cusps" in the action where you can do something. I have two ideas in mind.

First, the choice of reactions. When someone comes at you with a knife, your hero (and perhaps the player) will first be surprised. If you hit the button then, he''ll react in a panic, flinging up his arms or diving out a window or whizzing in his breeches. If you wait a quarter of a second or so, he''ll get his head on straight, and look for a way out. Now the button will cause a more thoughtful response, but still an evasive one. If you wait another quarter of a second, he''ll steel himself for a fight, and take up a defensive stance. Now the button will fight. If you wait too long, though, he''ll do the last thing on his list, in this case perhaps try to duck under the knife and trip the guy.

If you just mash the button, your guy will run around willy-nilly, screaming like a woman. If you don''t do anything, he''ll roll with the punches as long as he can, but won''t take any real action, and so his butt will inevitably be kicked. The best thing to do is size up the situation and try to do the right thing in each. Maybe when you''re being chased by a bear, screaming like a woman and diving down a steep hill is just the thing to do. Against a mugger, you might try your luck at a fight, or just remain passive and let him rob you. You get the idea. Each situation could have multiple possible outcomes, and it wouldn''t just be a "choose right or die" situation. The story would branch and bottleneck, like the Lone Wolf books, and if you do a lot of fighting your guy might become a better fighter and be able to kick that mugger''s nuts in instead of just rolling over and giving him your stuff.

The second type of scenario would be opportunistic. You''re walking down the street and the police are chasing a man past you. They shout, "Stop that man!" and a little icon or whatever appears on-screen. If you hit the button then, your guy sticks out a foot and trips the perp. Maybe the perp gets arrested and you get some reward money. Maybe that perp was actually your contact for the next mission. Maybe that perp gets up and tries to stick a knife in you. Anything is possible with clever writing.

Heck, in an RPG fight situation the button could do other things, too. When you''re actually fighting, it could control how hard and how well you hit, like a punt in football games. Dodges and blocks could also be tied in. When you''re wandering, your character might go to the village square, and then look around, wondering where to go next. When he looks down a street you want to explore, hit the button and he''ll stroll that way. If he''s walking and you want him to go somewhere else, hit the button and he''ll pause, stretch, and look around. With good character anims this could be really sweet.

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