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Horror game bosses question

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I am not sure if I am posting this question in the right area since I am new here. But the question is this. Do you think the idea of a boss chasing you from screen to screen is a bad move? Or do you think it should only follow so long? This is for horrror games only. And would you give it the ability to break down things to get to your character? Such as walls, doors, windows, etc. I would really appreciate serious replies... thank you

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If a boss did that, it would be pretty sweet. Especially in a horror game. You run off screen thinking your safe, only to see the wall come crashing down and the monster running straight for you.

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See thats exactley what I want. I want people to feel as if their safe but in all reality they are not. The bosses are there to scare the living hell out of the player besides wanting them dead. And I appreciate the comments that I have gotten thus far. And I hope to see more..Thanks to the people that responded to my post....Bruce aka Duncan

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When you say "boss" do you mean like Resident Evil: Nemesis boss that chases you throughout the entire game or do you mean end of level boss?

If your talking like Nemesis then just like RE you will have to have certain places where the boss can't follow 'cus i wouldn't want the boss chasing me non-stop throughout the entire game. It would be too similar to having to complete the game within a specific time period and that might not always be fun.

If your talking end of level boss then i guess it's ok for the boss to chase you non-stop, even breaking down walls, doors, windows etc if they have to.

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I like it when there is some sort of scripted boss sequence; I think it really adds to the game. However, Hexgear is right, don't have the boss follow through the entire game(or even halfway). Just have a sequence where it breaks through several rooms chasing you, whilst you run from it. Although, in devil may cry, there was this spider boss earlier on in the game. You had to fight him and then he sinks into the ground(and you think he died) but in the next level, some five or six rooms later, he drops from the ceiling and chases you through this hallway, busting up the floor and pillars in the hall, and you are forced to run. At the end of the hall, in the next room, you confront him and kill it. It really had a more involved feeling to it that added a slight shock when he drops in front of your charactor.(he was no small spider, either, being almost twice your size.[smile])

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Another good example to work of of besides DMC would be the first X-men legends. At one point you fight juggernaut in the mansion and you need to keep up with him throughout the rooms as he crashes though everything. Then in each room you'll fight a bit then continue chasing again. Finally in Professor Xavier's office he stops and you finish him off. I know you want the boss to be chasing you instead of the other way around but its the same concept to build off of.

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First of all I would like to say thanks to all who posted their comments to this post. And I can now give you more details about the scenario I was working on. And from what I read from your replies I have read them and understand what would and what would not work. And I definitly can see your point of views. Ok here is the situation with the boss. Well one of the bosses that is.

Example:

Let's say you happen to be going through an area of the city looking for stronger weapons, possible escape route, or maybe even a way to progress further into the city. Since some areas are inaccesible due to debris and or other objects you are having to bypass an area that it is in. Any ways let's just say one the boss i am referring to from the posts sees you. Of course it will then chase you, and try to kill you. Since the thing will be on your player in a matter of seconds, your only option other than fighting is to run away. But the boss will be on your heels. And lets just say that there is a building that you can go into. So now you have two choices other than fighting or running. To hide or not to hide in one of the many rooms.

So lets say that u decide not to hide but keep going, the boss would then follow you from room to room or from area to area, but only go so far. And then stop. Because it has lost interest in the chase or some thing else gets it's attention.

To answer the screen to screen comment here it is.

Like for instance in resident evil 2 when you encounter MR.X (the Grey Looking guy with the Green Lab coat). On Scenario B when you take the lighter to light the torches in that one room to get the cog wheel. He then gets into the room with you. Once you have the item and exit through the door, which the new screen loads and once the game has resumed, MR. X breaks through the wall to get to you. Of course you might get hit. But he has followed you from one screen to the next. Even though he busted down a part of the wall.

But as to my question, do you think it would add to the scariness of the game if the boss did more than just break down a wall? In my opinion i would like to see him break down a door or smash through a window to get to you. Whether or not he follows you. In the end I am only looking to add more scary parts to the game project i am working on. I hope this answers some of your questions. If not I truly apologize and will try better next time.











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Guest Anonymous Poster
it's a good idea. but of course, bosses have the tendency of chasing people alot, without giving up. which is what make Nemesis NOT so realistic all the time.
But heart pumping all the more.


but it all rounds up to what kind of monster you we are dealing here. I went through your process of how I could make it realistic. It was tough since my monster is supremely fierce, fast, agile and ....well the final element was the key.

There's are plenty of ways to find out how a monster can give up chasing a victim. there are ways indeed.
But if a monster leaves a hole in the wall, the hole's gotta be there forever. and if this monster does chase you all the time, then what happens if you appear in areas where other creatures lurk? You have to find alot of possibilites, then add a few elements to how the monster would stop chasing you, in order to stop leaving holes in the entire game of course.

For me, I found mine. truly effective. but not perfect. just take time. but it's cool man. the only problem with horror games producing mosters like that is that they don't make it realistic, or it doesn't really make sense.

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Well I will say that you do make sense. I will continue taking my time to put out a more realistic survival horror game. I just want the players to realize that this game will be a true horror survival game, and not a cake walk like resident evil 2 was and still is. I just have to figure out what i am going to do with the monsters and how i can play them in totally. As too the bosses I will definitly take the time to work things out. Because like you said, it should be realistic. And I hope in the end that I can achieve that goal. And thanks for your input..

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I like this idea and, I would also like it that, if you manage to wound it at some point(s) in the game while it's chasing you and it decides it needs to go back to it's lair, or whatever, to heal, then you should be able to track it to wherever it's resting and finish it off if you can.

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it's a good idea. but honestly, alot of people thought of it. but honestly, no one could perfect it.

as I mentioned before (above) There must be reasons how the monster stop chasing you. What are the key points which make a boss not want to chase you?

Because alot of people are engross in making the monster chase the person, the only thing in alot of people's mind is having the monster chase, chase, kill, kill. Thus, forgetting the nature of how the monster should act in different situation.

MY monster is blind. That was the key element. So If you want to avoid conflict, then yes, against a blind monster, any idiot would know what to do. But that is not the whole thing behind the monster. Think with an end in mind. Play yourself as the role of the monster, doing your best to perfect it's nature and find out how it can find it's victims if it knew they were hidding silently. Or is there an additional hidden ability you'd give the creature that allows it to detect it's silent victims? I know I have, and doing everything to perfect your monsters/bosses and the way it works, will give you the ability to figure out how to beat this creatures, thus, perhaps even end up thinking of a new form of gameplay along the way.

To me, horror games, it's all about strategies.
In all RE games, the bosses has never been difficult. What makes the game hard is the lack of ammo and durablility of enemies, and yet pros could finish it in an instant.
Tyrant, is always about running a certain degree in a one -one combat to avoid it's perfect swing.
X, it's just running away.
Nemesis, is also about running away, or purely fighting with maximum fire power.

Seriously if Nemesis was that brilliant a creature, I believe it could have been made better, since Umbrella wants to make it a bio weapon.

you have got to know the nature of your monster. You have to imagine yourself in the creatures shoes. How can you perfect it's nature as this type pf beast. Then you put it up against your main character, and in his shoes, figure out what he would do in tight situations, low ammo situation, pure fighting situations. there, new gizmos of gameplay will be formed. I did all that, the results stun me. But because I am not a developer, designer, can a disc support what I have to offer? Who knows. but that aside, this is a method I use to help myself. it ain't perfect, but the results it provide is much better.

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Two games that I really enjoy that feature this sort of thing is Prince of Persia: Warrior Within and Clocktower.

Prince of Persia had the dahaka, that would chase you relentlessly until you could get to a safe place. The fact that it was invincible made it so that you HAD to run, with perfectly timed maneouvering, which for me, was the best thing about the entire game. The chase sequences often involved the Dahaka bursting through walls and generally destroying the scenery, but since it was a very linear game, you didn't often have to return to these destroyed areas.

Clocktower is an old SNES survival horror game, where you played this little girl who was searching a house whilst being chased by a maniacal killer. In the game you were completely defenseless, you had no weapons or anything, and you had to run and hide and use the scenery to stop the boss. Eventually though he would pop up in other rooms and start the chase again. It is easily the scariest game I have ever played, it even had a panic button!

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Guest Anonymous Poster
it is like No One Lives Forever 2.

you have a boss in that game that does right the same. and it is frightning so, good idea.
i recommend doing that.

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I reckon the best type of boss for a horror game would be the Far-Cry style monsters, but in a more significant role. They punish you if you ignore them, they kill you extremely quickly, they chase you very well, they work together, some are quite fast and in some cases even partially invisible, they appear out of nowhere and scare the living shit out of you, they're neutral and they're strong but beatable. It adds a sense of reality to the game in that if you don't use stealth at least part of the game you'll eventually lose it. If you don't use heavy weapons and be loud in other parts of the game you'll lose it. It all adds to the balance of the game, they're stronger than you, but it doesn't necessarily mean you can't beat them.
As for the breaking through things, which is very weakly in relation to the Far-Cry monsters being able to jump far and high to get to you when you think you're in a safe position, that's a good idea. Just make some walls destroyable for the monster etc. I don't mean in a non-realistic matter, like some time through the game the monster smashes through a 10 metre thick titanium wall, and the next a paper-bark wall is holding it back. Just make it balanced, so that sometimes the monster can get stuck, not permanently, but long enough for you to escape it. Maybe have a maximum distance it can follow you at, as well as time. You can also incorporate other influences into the equation, for example, if it's chasing you, then all of a sudden there's another 4 or 5 monsters you're fighting, the game checks to see if the boss is in view, and if it's not, the boss disappears.
That way, when the player is finished killing these other 6 or 7 monsters as quickly as they can out of fear that the other big bastard behind them is just waiting for a clear shot to fist their head off, they turn around and it's gone, creating a sense of curiosity and fear. Of course that would be a very technical attribute because if there's no where for the boss to go and it disappears, making it obvious that the game forced its disappearance, it'll make the player dislike the game.

That's 100% based off 4 or 5 hours of FarCry play-time tonight, I'm not a fan of copying other games, but I have to say that FarCry has the best gameplay experience I personally have ever had, and would recommend you to at least try to use some of their AI techniques.

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In reality, you would not have to worry about other monsters. Think about shelob from lotr or other big mean monsters. First of all, all the smaller monsters stear clear of bosses lair and surroundings. Second, when they hear that megalith coming, they run faster than the pc. Therefore it would be sensical that if the boss is on your tail, you won't see any other monsters. This allows the pc to concentrate on the boss. As far as hiding and the like, you can have area's built right for some relief time.

Example: you are running through the grouds of a compound and come to a wooden warehouse. The first time, the pc runs into the warehouse and slams the door only to have the monster break down the door and surrounding wall to get at the pc. Now the pc is more aware so he runs out of the warehouse towards the main building, which is made of glass and steel. He runs through the steel door and closes it, thinking he is safe.

This lasts only a second, as he sees the monster running towards the window and not slowing down. He barely has time to start sprinting down the corridoor before it smashes through the glass and gallops after him.

Maybe you could have a guard crouching behind a desk (like this is the entry so there is a guard station) and the spider (thats what ive been thinking of as the boss) kills him with one of its legs almost without stopping and tosses his corpse off screen.

The pc spots a vent and rushes to it, barely wrenching it off and getting inside before the spider lashes its razor sharp appendages right where he had been in the cooridoor. Now at this point, the spider has no way of pursuing the character, and we give him a minute to cool off and patch up before throwing some mobs at him. He goes through a section of the building, killing smaller monsters along the way, and comes to a larger hallway. By this point he has forgotten or momentarily put the spider to the back of his mind. So we drop it on him from above and resume the chase.

Obviously this would not go on too long nor through too many scenes as it would get tedious, but it would be long enough that the player would be significantly be shaken. Also, perhaps the last scene where he kills the spider it could be that he uses something from the area to kill the spider, or an area where he has more of an advantage so he could actually kill it, since he can't kill it during the chase.

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true. however, most games are already applying that system. no monster go near boss area, or etc, as you have mentioned. Seriously, I find it...well, good, but not realistic enough and doesn't truly bring out the real life challenge.

Games are meant for entertainment. but if they want to make it realistic, they'll have to make it damn realistic...in terms of gameplay I mean. Mainly horror as well. sometimes it's cool to have a monster chasing you everywhere and then some idiotic creture stands in your way through the chase, avoid it and perhaps the boss might stop to kill the following creature and then give chase, or maybe just avoid the little monster and continue after you. All goes down to the nature of the creature.

[Edited by - G-Irregular on April 3, 2006 9:38:28 PM]

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I agree with you, thats why I put that bit about a guard in. Having stupid enemies in the way who get trampled by you or the boss adds a coolness factor to your game and a power factor to the boss.

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Do you mean like in Devil may cry when that spider keeps following you around and then you keep coming up across that bird thing? (I love that game, lol.) Anyway, yeah, I think it sounds like a brilliant idea. I think you should make it so that the boss dissapears for a while making you feel safe and in the clear, and then when you least expect it make it burst through a wall at you or something causing you to jump out of your skin. I read in a book that to make something really scary you have to keep having a period of calmness between shocks because then you can get people when they least expect it.

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One idea that would work well with this would be that bosses can't be killed by normal weapons. Instead the player has to utilize the environment to defeat and delay the boss.

For instance let say a boss is chancing you through a bio lab. You can seal it in a feezer by shooting a tank of liquid at the right moment, which will stop to boss for 5-7 minutes. Giving you more time to explore the lab and try and find what you are looking for or a way to stop it once and for all.

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Be a total bastard to your player and have a breakable wall on the other side of town from where you meet the boss. Only the boss can break that wall and behind that wall is a super secret that everyone wants.

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While the idea of having a monster boss chase you is scary intially it's not exciting and after awhile becomes monotonous.

Try having the monster following the character through cutscenes and things like that while the main character continues on it's quest. This will foreshadow the eventual encounter and when done right will cause fear in the plar, knowing that they are being hunted and will have to evntually face it.

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