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3rd Person Shooter game

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Hi there, I and some friends are developing a 3rd person shooter/adventure game. what do you all think should be the do's and dont's of 3rd person shooter/adv games?? Tell me what you like and don't like...gotta hear from the public. later ppl! :)

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Well, you need to be sure to have lasers, magic spells, and robots and wizards on motorcycles and dragons who eat them. Whatever you do, don't include plumbers or clowns.

Hmm...

Maybe it would help if you offered a little more information about your project? Genre, setting...? You're asking a pretty wide open question there.

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Well it's a game set in the near future, 2036. Just picture a Metal Gear Solid feel in a big city like Gotham. It takes place at a large corporation's complex. The weaponry is basically pistols, machine guns, gatlins, shotguns, katana blades, etc.
Maybe that lowers the vagueness.

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Not a lot. With what you've given us, I think the list of "do"s and "don't"s is unlikely to get more advanced than:

DO: Explain with more detail

DON'T: Focus too much on weapons.

A description of the gameplay and atmosphere will be far more usefull to Gamedev posters than just telling us it'll be a cross between Metal Gear and Batman, but with weapons ranging from sharp bits of metal from feudal Japan to multi-barrelled automatic rifles from nineteenth-century USA to laser-powered CQB force multipliers from the world of tomorrow.

My advice is to forget about "Do" and "Don't" lists. Looking for hard and fast rules about game design is a good way to limit your potential. Instead, design a sample level from the game. Don't worry too much about story or whatever. Just draw a level on a piece of paper. Put some crates, some crawlspaces, some gun emplacements and a few guards into a two-story "kill house", and then sit down with your team and decide what it'll look like when your hero goes through that area and kills/incapacitates/evades the enemies. It's best to do this with a case of beer and some props, so you can act out all the ninjutsu, shooting, and tactics that he'll be using. I sometimes use this technique when I'm writing a story or planning a post on these forums. Even if it doesn't give you a 100% feasible design document, it'll help you get acquainted with your ideas and set the tone for your project.

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Well I'm looking for more of what ppl want in this type of game. For instance, when I play a 3rd person game (MGS, Splinter Cell, Rez Evil), I like the character development. You got to have the ppl in the story grow, otherwise whats the point of progression with the game? Also I do not like how sometimes the camera is in front of the character and you cannot see whats in front of you.

These are the types of things Im looking for for feedback, things of a 3rd person game that transent all genres, settings, etc. There are things ppl like and dislike on any level. Also, have you been playing a 3rd person shooter and wished it had different functions, features, etc? Any feedback is appreciated.

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The floating cammera angles can be abit annoying in certain games. An alternative if your not running in to many wide open area's is to use pre-placed Camera angles (ala Rez Evil). The thing about those is that if you don't place them properly you end up with more of a problem than a solution. A good idea might be to combine the two for hallway/open room environments, switching between a roaming cam/fixed angle when you enter/leave hallways/open area's.

There are alot more 3rd person games you could look at for idea's if your looking for any. Project Eden and Martian Gothic, allows you to control upto 3 people that you can switch between, so one guy can flip a switch to allow another one of your characters to progress. Or Oni, which focus's on martial arts combat with pick-up-as-you-go disposable weaponry.

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Along those same lines, take a look at the camera in Pince of Persia: Warrior Within. By default, it's a chase cam, which does its best to show you whatever elevant items and enemies are in the area, but can be controlled with the right analog stick. There are two other options, however--first-person and "landscape" camera angles.

First-person is just what you think it is, and can be very handy for spotting traps, passages or enemies. Landscape is a pre-set location in the area, chosen for its favorable view of the area and the puzzle you're working on. The camera controls are limitted to zoom variables, but if I get stuck, I can just snap into landscape view and there's a good chance it'll show me some thing or relationship between objects that I hadn't seen otherwise.

As to character development, good use of NPCs is a terrific tool. Try to avoid the standard "damsel in distress", "venerable teacher", and "token minority sidekick who dies tragically" stereotypes, but use a good secondary character to reveal important info about the hero. If used properly, flashbacks can be useful as well. But try not to spend too much time in cut scenes. It's a shooter-type game, after all, and people will want action more than they want cinema. Plot and characterization are just the icing on the cake, and few people like cake with too much icing.

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don'ts:

Crates. Whenever i run into a crate in real life nowadays, there's this quick first thought in my head that i should either smash it on jump on it. Endless repetition does this to your brain. How many crates do you see in a day?

Lack of focus: have a gameplay theme, stick to it. Sneaking is one, but if sneaking, what is a machine gun/gatling doing there?

Excess backstory: if the story doesn't affect the game in any way, i wouldn't read it. If it's a cutscene and its pretty, i'll just stare without minding what it's really happening.

about camera: Prince of Persia and Silent hill had fixed camera AND chase camera. It's chase camera usually until you come in range of a fixed one. PoP in addition had a fight cam, and it was pretty good. if you have automatic camera of any kind, an override/snap button is a must. both SH and PoP had one. in addition, PoP had landscape view.

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Quote:
Original post by Iron Chef Carnage
Along those same lines, take a look at the camera in Pince of Persia: Warrior Within. By default, it's a chase cam, which does its best to show you whatever elevant items and enemies are in the area, but can be controlled with the right analog stick. There are two other options, however--first-person and "landscape" camera angles.

First-person is just what you think it is, and can be very handy for spotting traps, passages or enemies. Landscape is a pre-set location in the area, chosen for its favorable view of the area and the puzzle you're working on. The camera controls are limitted to zoom variables, but if I get stuck, I can just snap into landscape view and there's a good chance it'll show me some thing or relationship between objects that I hadn't seen otherwise.
Ugh, please don't take Warrior Within's camera system as an example. That system has probably managed to piss me off more than the lack of nice music, lack of plot, and lack of characterization combined...

You control the regular camera with one stick, but the first-person camera uses the other stick. It gets stuck against small wall obstacles, like pillars. The fixed camera positions frequently won't give you the information you need to complete the puzzle (for example, it won't show you the particular ledge you need to grab, or the corridor you're meant to run off down. It switches position at incredibly inconvenient times, and because the movement is all basic camera-relative, means that you suddenly veer off to one side.

So please, don't copy it [rolleyes]

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Don't make another Heavy Metal FAKK 2. The game was complete crap.

The best third-person action/adventure I've ever played is Beyond Good & Evil. If you haven't played this game, DO IT. Use it as a prime example. It's about what I'd expect Secret of Mana to look like on modern hardware. However, I would recommend some type of co-op mode. Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles is a great modern SoM clone.

Far too many games lack co-op modes. When you have good network code and a shallow story, there's really no excuse for leaving out co-op. Far Cry is an excellent example of this: why not have two players instead of one? There's even a second character in some parts of the game, but you can't play her! The code was there, and it wouldn't have broken the story. These short-sighted design decisions are completely absurd.

Halo (for X-Box) sort of smudged on this: only one Master Sergeant showed up in the cut scenes, but you could still play with two people. It still worked. Halo co-op was a fantastic gaming experience. (It was lost somewhere in the transition to PC. This has me utterly dumbfounded.)

Edit: Someone might bring up the co-op mod for Far Cry. Don't bother. It was ridiculously buggy and actually broke the single player game.

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I recently played The Suffering.
It had a standard 3rd person chase cam, and sometimes used a fixed cam for some rooms.
The nice thing about it, however, was the option to switch to First Person perspective. When you did, the game actually BECAME a FPS. some controlls were slightly different to appeal to the FPS style.

For some, jumping from one ledge to another is harder in FPS tahn in 3rd Person, but for other, its the opposite. Having both views was nice to be able to see the environment easier. You cant look up as easy in 3rd person, so alot of games ahve a First Person view taht you can use to do it, but then you're usually at a vast disadvantage if you get attacked in First person Mode.In the Suffering, you could look around the environment, and not have to change views to kill the bad guys.

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