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How to be Evil?

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How about making an RPG where the aim of the game is to be(come) the evil overlord / destroyer / conqueror. How would you make an RPG where the aim was to maintain power and be evil?

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The ability to kill, eat, torture and rape you friends and enemies would get you on the right track. Then betrayal and stealing, destroying other people's possesion or take prisioners and selling them as slaves isn't nice either.

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Yeah, just have nefarious deeds lead to something other than fugitive status. The ability to conquer territories and collect taxes from them is the foundation of any empire. Using fear to keep the subjugated masses in line makes it an evil empire, and having absolute authority over all levels of government and society is what makes you an evil emperor.

Betrayal is my favorite evil deed. You and your team get right up the the magical amulet of power, and then you knife them all and take it. Hah! Profitable, despicable and easy enough to set up. I remember a short story, I think it was in the DragonLance universe, where a dragon discuised himself as a dragonslayer every few months, went into town to hire the half-dozen most powerful warriors, and then led them into a trap and killed them, thus ensuring that there were never any humans around tough enough t take him down.

For more advice on sticking it to your allies and becomeing the queen bitch of the universe, see Kerrigan, Sarah.

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That is a much harder task to do than is sounds. Doing percieved evil deeds only to do them is not believable. There must be a situation were the perception of doing these evil deeds is the only way to achieve the goal.

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See the game "Evil Genius" for reference. It's a realtime strategy style game, but could lay a good groundwork for an RPG, since all you would need to add would be more in-depth storyline and background.

I would just feel the need to stress, as others have said, that the idea of just going around and killing everything, or stealing everything in sight or whatever else would be a rather pointless and quickly boring game. There must be some larger reason for behaving criminally, obviously as you've said, you have to become the grand evil overlord, so the dastardly deeds you are performing should work in some way to reaching that goal. Yes petty theft should be a possibility, since afterall, you've got to start somewhere. But with a game of this type it's important to provide a large number of options as to how to be dastardly. If it all boils down to just killing or stealing, then once again, the replayability factor drops dramatically. However, if you can, in addition to stealing and killing, put out hits, form a drug ring or be a drug trafficer, bootleg alcohol and other contraband, launder money, collect "protection" money or any other number of things, then it takes longer for the player to become bored.

I'd also recommend providing a large list of "equipment" or tools of the trade that the player can choose from, not necessarily in a straight line improvement style, but maybe Player A likes to rough people up with a bat while Player B likes to break knee-caps with a tire iron. Allow the player to really play out their twisted, demented little personas. They'll love it cause of course, the real world has cops that keep the "honest" honest. Also something can be said of having in-game cops, to make sure that the player must use some tact in undertaking and creating their evil empire.

Anyway, that's my two cents, something to chew on.

Vopisk

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It depends entirely on your definition of "evil". If, like most games, you define evil to be along the lines of the moustache-twirling black caped tying-maidens-to-railroad-tracks variety, then the usual path of just acting like a complete bastard is typical; this is what was done in Knights of the Old Republic, and most people tended to like that.

However, I tend to dislike that kind of thing, because at its core it's stupid, especially if you are trying to maintain a positon of power. No-one trusts a back-stabber who is often more of a menace to his friends than his enemies. Instead to be a true ruler with an slightly evil bent I'd prefer to be totally Machievellian; skillfully manipulating others into doing my bidding. Under this scheme, the ruler might even appear to be nice, kissing babies and generally trying to make people happy, but in this case the motives are different from a "good" character; the ruler isn't doing it to make people happy, the ruler is doing it to stay in power.

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Quote:
Original post by Trapper Zoid
It depends entirely on your definition of "evil". If, like most games, you define evil to be along the lines of the moustache-twirling black caped tying-maidens-to-railroad-tracks variety, then the usual path of just acting like a complete bastard is typical; this is what was done in Knights of the Old Republic, and most people tended to like that.

However, I tend to dislike that kind of thing, because at its core it's stupid, especially if you are trying to maintain a positon of power. No-one trusts a back-stabber who is often more of a menace to his friends than his enemies. Instead to be a true ruler with an slightly evil bent I'd prefer to be totally Machievellian; skillfully manipulating others into doing my bidding. Under this scheme, the ruler might even appear to be nice, kissing babies and generally trying to make people happy, but in this case the motives are different from a "good" character; the ruler isn't doing it to make people happy, the ruler is doing it to stay in power.


So it's a lot like the President of the United States is what you're saying?

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Well, here are some things that villains would like:
1. power
2. money
3. great fortress/dungeon/evil cave/old hut/parents basement
4. Lots of minions to do dirty work
5. Some way to deal with those meddling heros
6. more money
7. a life of debauchery
8. the praise/acceptance/respect/fear/mortal terror of their subjects
9. more debauchery
10. cool magical items
11. not letting anyone else have any more of the above things than themselves.
12. other stuff

So a villains measure could be divided into
1. Resources- Their bases, minions, weapons, territory etc.
2. Reputation- How much they are liked/feared by peasants, hated/feared by enemies, liked/feared by allies.
3. Personal abilities- The villains personal stat (magic, swordmanship, etc.)


Resources would be gained or bought with money that is stolen, or acquired through different ways. (robbing, poaching, selling illegal items, grave-robbing, or just doing legidimate business)

Reputaion would go by a love/hate/fear basis
If they love you then you can command them, they might resist if they don't love you enough.
If they hate you then you're enemies.
If they fear you then you can push them around but they might try stopping you if they don't fear you enough.

stuff like inviting people to depraved parties, extream taxation, or public executions effect how different groups feel about you.

Then personal abilities is basically the same as those of RPG adventures or bosses or whatever. Useful for striking terror into people or dealing with adventures on a personal basis.

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For ease of storywriting/plot, I'd place the game in a culture that is naturally cutthroat/evil. Machiavellian Italy, hyper-styalized prohibition Chicago, a dark elf city... Then setup the competition in that selfish, cutthroat style.

Though the standard comedy-faire evil like Evil Genius and Dungeon Keeper is fun too.

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