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Brokenimage

Mental conflict--Suggestions appreciated!

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Hi there! I've whined about this project before, so forgive me... I'm currently working on a superhero RPG. Everyone that enters the city where the game takes place are interviewed extensively by the police, so that they can determine their powers/weaknesses, so they have an advantage, however slight, if they need to fight them. The grandson of a known supervillian is attempting to enter said city, and enlists the help of a telepath (the player) to get him through the interview, by modifying the emotions of the interview-er, hopefully to distraction. Problem is, I want this distraction scene to be a sort of challenge/minigame, and not just a lame-o cutscene. Can anyone think of anything, other than the basic Q&A session? (BTW: I'm not a very experienced programmer, so please, nothing needlessly complex)

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Have you played Shenmue II on XBox (may also be on other platforms, I'm not sure)? It has sequences that are almost cutscenes, but at certain times ask the player to push a randomly selected button within a certain amount of time. If they player pushes the button in time, they succeed in doing something and get a better outcome than they otherwise recieve. If they fail to push the correct button in time, the game simply continues rather than having them fail and need to try again, although they'll recieve a slightly less favorable outcome (not neccesarily failure however).

For example, consider a chase scene through a busy area. The player is suddenly given 3 seconds to push the "X" button. If they succeed, they jump and slide over an obstacle, catching the villain, but if they don't they bump into the obstruction, and the villain escapes for now.

It's an excellent way of seemlessly integrating player reactions into what's essentially a cutscene.

Anyways, I've been rambling on about this because it's something you could consider using for your game; perhaps when certain questions are asked the player will have a few seconds to hit a certain key, and thier action will vary somewhat based on whether or not they succeed. You could have a few different outcomes for the section if you wanted as well:
- The player performs perfectly, and the villain manages to completely fool the interviewer.
- The player performs acceptably, and the villain fools the interviewer, but the authorities are suspicious.
- The player performs badly, and the villain doesn't fool the interviewer at all.
- The player performs so terribly that the interviewer realises what is happening.

Just an idea, I'm sure there are other good ways to deal with the situation.

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In Neverwinter Nights, there was a scene where you had to act as defense lawyer for an NPC who was suspected of murder. During the quest you could go round a collect information by talking to people, examining scenes and the rest of it, and you use that knowledge and information in court.

A system like this, where you have to say the *right* thing to keep the interviewer distracted could work quite nicely. You could learn about what is most likely to distract, and have to say that sort of thing, without being too blatent.

Another way to have the actual scene of the interview is by having a minigame with a line, and two dots (or whatever visual reprisentation you want). The first dot is you, and to extent it along the line, you have to answer questions that the minigame gives you, questions about things you ought to have researched. The other dot is the interviewers interlect (?!) and it goes at a steady rate, if he catches you, you lose.

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There's an old game called Paradroid which had a part where you basicly had to take control of other robots running around a spaceship. Battles for control were centered around trying to get control of the most registers which had a few randomly generated obsticals. Battles were usually about a minute to 30 seconds long.

Not very helpful but... There was some sort of political type game released in the past year or two where you would try to convince a person on the street of your ideology. Some sort of minigame was involved. Wish I knew the name of it, I wouldn't mind knowing more myself.

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...now that I think about it, there was on old Blade Runner game made by westwood (terrible game, btw), with a little minigame kinda like what I'm looking for.

The game/movie/book is mostly about conflict between humans and replicants--androids that can pass for humans in almost every way. the only way to really tell if a person was a replicant or not (other than open-chest surgery, presumably) was to put them through the "Voight-Kampf" test, which measured their reaction times to certain questions.
When actually administering the test, the player could choose to ask three kinds of questions: Hard, Medium, and Easy. The harder the question, the more accurate the results, but harder questions also annoyed the victim(?) more. The challenge was trying to ask questions long enought to get a verdict, while keeping the victim relatively calm.

'course, I'm not exactly sure how it would apply to this thread, but, it's worth mentioning, methinks.

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