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Arresting People

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Hey, I'm working on a design, and one of the key ideas is that you don't have to mow down everyone in your way; you can also arrest them. Every player and enemy has an HP meter and a Morale meter, and some enemies have a morale meter far shallower than their HP. What I'm wondering is, what would be effective abilities/items to reduce this morale meter? What sort of animations would be appropriate for subduing individuals? That sort of thing. I'm planning to just have arrested individuals disappear from the screen and go right into your score, so, that's less of a concern.

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Hey, that would be cool. If instead of just shooting them down you had to chase the bad guys, tackle them, and hand-cuff them. Assuming you're playing a cop in this game, you could include other helpful weapons for subduing an unruly opponent: pepperspray, a baton, a tazer, things like that could be used to slow down or immobilize the guy long enough for you to 'cuff 'em.

Other tactics to employ would be just shouting at them: "Stop! Police!" Maybe offer a few variations.. Shouting at them to stop might reduce the morale of some opponents (they'll decide to give up) but it might encourage others to run even faster.

You could include different hand-to-hand combat techniques depending on where you are and whats happening. Tackle the guy if he's running, push him to the ground or in a wall if he's nearby but not running. Include pat-downs, etc.

Sounds fun!

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Quote:
Original post by Beige
Hey, I'm working on a design, and one of the key ideas is that you don't have to mow down everyone in your way; you can also arrest them. . . I'm planning to just have arrested individuals disappear from the screen and go right into your score, so, that's less of a concern.


I like the idea that arresting may be harder than just shooting them but gives you a better score if you do. As long as it's not frustrating to the player and maybe has a good contextual incentive (storyline reason, or nifty game effect somehow), it will actually happen.

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Take a look at Swat 4. In that game, you have to "non-lethal" someone (using smoke, bean bag shotgun, tazer...) and then you take out your cuffs and arrest them. I would love it if you could press a surrender button also.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
take a look at the latest (or only?) judge dredd game. you can either shoot people or arrest them. a little voice gives you info on your objective and you run around the level walking by punks, prostitutes, and others. as you walk up to them they start avoiding whatever criminal behaviour they were engaged in and acting innocent. you get close enough to them and hold some key while trying to keep the person in front. they'll duck, beg, and plead to let them go, but if you hold it long enough (like 3 seconds) they'll finally give in and you slap handcuffs on them. if they don't see you coming up you can arrest them right away, and i think, you get more points.

each one of these arrests adds to your arrest quota for that level, which is, i guess, like catching yellow stars or whatever else you need to get to bonus levels in those old side-scroll games.

not only was this feature fun because it gave me the chance to see some different animations, and hearing the excuses was sometimes funny, but it also made it seem like the random characters were more than just speedbumps on my way to the main boss.

hope that helps.

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You could watch an episode of COPS (if you live in America) and get a ton of ideas. In addition to verbal commands and threatening with weapons, something like a K-9 or helicopter may also reduce a suspect's morale.

What kind of a setting are you using? Realistic, fantasy, city-based, urban, futuristic, cartoon, all of the above?

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Thanks for the ideas, everyone! I will have to check out that Judge Dredd game.

I was thinking along the lines of manipulating the enemy's morale somewhere along the lines of not just an extra out. For instance, like Taolung mentioned, enemies that respond differently to low morale or morale-damaging attacks.

For the first fight with them, you use your megaphone or tear gas or whatever, and they charge at you, doing massive damage, instead of coughing and hacking. Once you realize this, you can use morale to force them to charge at you, which is very good if you have your nightsticks and riot shields.

Something like that.

I was also tossing around the idea of incorporating dialogue options in combat, trying to talk down an enemy. But I don't know how I could do it without major UI problems, breaking the flow of the gameplay up, etc.

Quote:
Original post by hunterb
You could watch an episode of COPS (if you live in America) and get a ton of ideas. In addition to verbal commands and threatening with weapons, something like a K-9 or helicopter may also reduce a suspect's morale.


Heh, spotlights and police dogs! I never even thought of that. I guess I'll have to watch that show more.

Quote:
What kind of a setting are you using? Realistic, fantasy, city-based, urban, futuristic, cartoon, all of the above?


Near-future, mostly realistic with some gadgets and stuff.

Well.

Close combat is viable due to a storyline loophole, a passive personal shield that deflects ranged attacks but lets melee attacks through, something like the shield from Doom. That, and the plucky hero's uncanny ability to dive across a room and emerge unscathed by a hailstorm of bullets.

It's "action movie" realistic, let me put it that way.

[Edited by - Beige on February 11, 2005 3:16:20 PM]

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[quote]Original post by Beige
I was also tossing around the idea of incorporating dialogue options in combat, trying to talk down an enemy. But I don't know how I could do it without major UI problems, breaking the flow of the gameplay up, etc.
[quote]

I think you're on to a great idea. It does pose a problem in terms of maintaining the gameplay's flow, though, but I think there is a lot of potential for deep gameplay.

The "morale" factor can have a very interesting emotional aspect.

Consider, for example, the phenomenon of "suicide-by-cop," where an individual has become suicidal, but is afraid of actually committing suicide, so they threaten police in order to force them to shoot. Law enforcement has a very difficult job trying to protect themselves and the suicidal subject and either get the person to surrender or incapacitate them.

Keep working on it!

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This sounds uncannily similiar to my post in the "Combat vs. Pacifism" thread.

Anyway, here are several things that can turn a battle in your favor.

1. Look tough- Enemies are intimidated by policemen and not by weak victims. So depending on how intimidating you look you can either scare crooks just by being there or attract them like a magnet.

2. Give in- If you want to, you can "give up" on certain enemies. If you're getting mugged, you give them your wallet. If they are trying to steal your car, get out. The crimminal thinks they won... and then you can shoot them when their guard is down.

3. Take them down- Remove their advantage. If a rapist corners you, attack them first. Anything that weakens their position.

4. Strengthen yourself- Yell for help, get a weapon, take control of the situation. Anything that makes you more formidable.

Conversly, I suppose some enemies might have mo

So, for some useful ideas on each item.

#1
Reputation- If you have a high Rep then the crimminals recognise you and lose more morale by seeing you. This could become a factor in arresting "big time" crooks.

Disguise- By walking as a plainclothesman then crooks may underestimate you, then you can arrest them easier.

#2
Run Away- Leave a battle quickly, you lose some Rep but live to fight another day, works 100% of the time unless the crooks are copkillers or something.

Give Money- You put away your weapons and hand them a wad of cash. If the crook is greedy, stupid, or overconfident this makes them let their guard down so you can sneak attack them.

Throw Money- You throw a wad of money at the enemy. If they are stupid, greedy, or overconfident they stop to pick it up and you can sneak attack.

Accept Bribe- If the battle is in your favor, then you can forfeit the battle and collect money.

#3
Deal Damage- The more they are hurt, the less they feel like fighting (usually).

Steal Weapon- If they are distracted or stunned, rush in and grab their weapon.

Yell and Threaten- Point your weapon and them and yell, this grabs the enemies attention and keeps them on the guard.

Tear Gas- Stuns and/or blinds the enemy.

#4
Subdue- Once the enemy is weakened enough, you can try to tackle and subdue them. Succeed and they are arrested, fail and you are prone to attack for a moment.

Call Backup- Summons allies and their Rep and attack power is added to your side.

Pull out Weapon- More powerful weapons raise your intimidation power.

Warning Shot- Keeps enemies on defensive, doesn't hurt them, may raise your accuracy.


=======

As for subdoing, you could

1. Knock them out (a blow to the head or sleeping gas)
2. Subdue them (weaken them and then tackle them)
3. Force them to surrender. (weaken them and prevent them from escaping so they give up)

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FYI you could arrest perps in the Judge Dredd game for the Super Nintendo by either first hitting them with regular ammo and then a rubber bullet or however many rubber bullets it took for them to get on their knees and put their hands behind their hands, then you just walk over and press the arrest button. That game was awesome.

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True Crime: Streets of LA gave you the option of showing your badge or firing a warning shot instead of just starting a fight. Some perps would surrender as soon as they knew you were a cop; others would take you on. If you show up in a police car with the siren on, though, you were almost guaranteed an easy arrest. Those flashing lights and wailing sirens take the fight right out of them.

And don't forget handcuffing unconscious opponents and corpses. That's standard operating procedure. Unless it interferes with needed medical treatment, the cuffs go on as soon as they are in custody, alive or dead.

I recommend that you have most enemies give up fairly easily. True Crime and my police training both suffered from the "everyone fights, then runs, then has a gun" problem. My guard was never down, because I was always 100% sure that I was going to get shot at. Let players become complacent. Make it easy to "farm" reputation points by arresting boatloads of drug pushers and shoplifters, and then when a guy who just rana stop sign takes a swing at you, you'll be terribly surprised.

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