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Extrarius

Diablo 2035

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In my recent quest for games to play, I noticed a distinct lack of games in the genre/style I love. Thus, I've started thinking about a design for a game that would be (theoretically) simple to make but also fun to play. The obvious idea that comes to mind is procedural content and the most prominent recent game (that I know of) in the proper style was diablo, so I started disecting various parts of the game. As far as the story/plot/setting/etc, it seems that for the most part Diablo was pretty weak here because it doesn't fit the genre/style. However, such things are neccessary because they help guide creation of the game world and the window through which the user sees the mechanics. In Diablo (and far too many other games), the game was set in a fantasy world with hellish demons and devils of all sorts being the enemy, and magic items dropping to fuel the player into deeper and darker dungeons. Seeing as fantasy settings are second only to psuedo-realistic settings, the idea of doing it as science fiction came to mind. Just about all of the elements translate in one manner or another to science fiction without much trouble, and I'd like comments on my translation (below) and comments or suggestions on ways to improve things. To start with, instead of hell in a dungeon, a typical replacement setting for science fiction would be monsters in an underground top-secret weapon labratory. It fits very well, because it could have both vast open spaces (with odd machinery filling and acting as cover / obscurers) and tight, precision-machined spaces full of computers etc. The demons, then, become genetically engineered alien soldiers coming through some kind of Portal Man Was Not Meant To Make (but did anyways). Instead of 'Hell' difficulty, there is the 'Third Wave'. Magic swords and enchanted armor become altered blasters and shield belts. Bascially, I'm thinking that the players will always be inside something like Samus' (star of Metroid) power suit. The weapons become different kinds of blasters, armor becomes various shielding technology, rings/amulets/charms become 'suit enhancement modules', sockets become 'module slots', gems and runes become 'item enhancement modules'. Instead of Cain and Wirt, the military is guarding the exit and you have 'John Doe' and 'Mr Smith' to greet you (and stop you from leaving). Town portals are replaced by teleportation, and most floors are guarded by 'telejammers' that must be disabled before your backup can beam you to the level of your choice. Those levels not guarded are accessable at any time, but the team won't beam you down there until they know you're ready. To facilitate two-way teleportation in blocked areas, you have to activate a beacon to be teleported in/out, but it only has enough juice to work once. Levels become 'suit upgrades', which means that having to return to town after a time would make sense, and doesn't seem too bad an idea. Instead of experience, there is 'Honor' or 'Acomplisments' or the like that shows how much higher ups are noticing you, and instead of 'Level Up', the explantation would be something like "Your performance convinced _ that you're worth the cost of upgrade" or "Your quality work convinced _ that you could actually use a more powerful suit" etc. The modules mentioned above would initially come as ready-to-use items you can equip by sticking right in the inventory slot, but as you progress down to the depths of the lab, they would cease being immediately usable and an engineer from the team above would be required to custom-fit the part-alien technology into your suit (and also to identify it's functionality). Perhaps nanites could perform the same function, since they can 'see' and modify the hardware at a very low level, and an engineer at ground level could be guiding them to the proper actions. Weapons would be similarly unknown, though they could be used without being identified. Perhaps some of the buttons/dials aren't obvious, so only some of the functionality will be available when using an 'unidentified' weapon. Also, maybe there is a chance of incorrectly setting an option and causing a weapon to overload (destroying itself and possibly the user) if it hasn't been properly analyzed by an engineer. The same could work for protection technology. Instead of health and mana, the two stats become shields and energy. In a sci-fi world, things are so deadly that without shields, health is meaningless. The armor-replacement items would act as inertial dameners and energy deflectors, deflecting blows and reducing the amount of damage that gets through to the suit's shields. The only two things I'm not really sure on are spells and skills. Any ideas on what those should be converted to? Thoughts, Comments, Suggestions?

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This sounds really cool Extrarius, seems like something not really done before. I remember the Syndicate was something like this but still was a blast. Anyways keep working on this :)

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Generally, some sort of [possibly genetically engineered] psionics fits best into a sci-fi setting. I would be highly suprised if there's not a few sci-fi roguelikes floating around to get ideas from (since diablo is just a shiny, popular roguelike).

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That sounds really good, congrats on the idea. Make sure you have multiplayer though, and I'd buy it.

For classes, you can have soldier, engineer, demolition expert, etc with the skills being things like skill shot, multi shot, power blast, stunner shot, for the ranger-ish class, and direct blast, heavy blast, and wave blast, for the demolitioner. For an engineer, you might give him the ability to identify things himself(Even though Diablo didn't have that), or you might give him the ability to set traps, like the assassin on diablo 2. Soldier specific things can be military issued, battle enhancing drugs for things like extra speed, attack, or defense for a limited amount of time, depending on level of skill.(Or is that what Telastyn ment by "genetically engineered psionics"?)

It would take you a while to think up ideas for lots of skills, and a while more to even them out, but I think you have a brilliant game idea rapidly forming.

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Well, my difficulty with skills and classes comes from the fact that I was planning on having procedurally generated weapons. Instead of "rocket launcher", you'd be able to find a blaster with "Explosive: 5 Meters" as a kind of 'magic modifier' (think rares in diablo 2). Instead of "ShotGun" you have a modifier "MultiShot: 20 Shots, Arc 10, Grouped" (grouped meaning shotgun, spaced meaning more like a nova kind of effect). Instead of melee weapons, there would be a "Melee" modifier that would only be applied to weapons with area of effect. In essence, a weapon with "melee" would also always have something like "Cone: 5 Meters, Arc 10" meaning it acts kind of like a flamethrower, hurting everything in the specified cone when fired.

These types of modifiers would be in addition to the "+X% Damage" and the like already in diablo, and it would allow for VERY powerful weapons ('rocket shotgun').

Some of the effects I have in mind so far are partially repacements for the elemental damage types, while others are simply effects not found in diablo 1 or 2:
Explosive - Normal damage to target, reduced damage (based on distance) to nearby targets.
Plasmatic - Projectile continues through the primary target, stopping after it's penatrated a certain length of material (doesn't go through as many large targets as small ones, but does more damage to larger foes).
Ionized - Projectile path bends somewhat (specified by a variable) toward nearby targets, and on hit they are periodically stunned (shown as electric arcs over the alien w/ them spasming for a short period).
Melee - The area of effect (all melee items have an AOE) begins immediately at the tip of the blaster instead of where the bullet hits. For ranged attacks, the AOE begins at the impact point (or possibly later for Plasmatic weapons and any similar effects?).
Cone - The area of effect is shaped as a cone and extends a specified distance forward with a specified angle. Everything in the cone takes full damage/effects/etc. With a low angle, this can act as a 'line'
Radius - The area of effect is a circle of the specified radius and everything inthe area takes full damage/effects/etc. If this is combined with 'explosive', the explosive distance starts at the edge of the radius effect, thus having the same falloff rate but a bigger 'inside radius' (normally 0).
Cryogenic - Enemies are slowed by a certain amount based on the damage done to them by a crogenic attack, up to some specified limit. The effect is proportional to the target's maximum health, so it takes more damage to get the full slow effect if an enemy has more health (ie for 'bosses' or 'unique' aliens).
MultiShot - This indicates a weapon fires multiple projectiles per shot, and parameters are the number of projectiles per shot, the amount of distance the projectils area spread over, and how the projectiles are spread over that distance ("Grouped" meaning shotgun-like, "Spread" meaning evenly spaced, maybe more options like "X-Y-X" to indicate 3 groups of shots with each group taking the same space so 2-5-2 acts like a 3-shot spread, but with the left and right shot each being 2 grouped bullets and the middle one being 5 grouped).

Also, I was thinking that each character should always have two weapons, one 'normal' blaster and one that acts kind of like a grenade launcher, so there would be two classes of weapons and each one could be randomized (and a 'grenade launcher' without explosive or AOE would essentially shoot bouncy 'lead' so to speak). This would allow the game to feel a bit more arcade-like and allow some strategy etc. It also fills the 'shield' slot that would exist in diablo and adds a bit of variety.
Alternately, maybe 'Bouncy' should be a modifier and any two weapons could be dual-wielded.

Instead of spells, how about 'energy' is used as ammo, so you can't just keep blasting away forever without thinking about it. However, it should regenerate quite quickly so you can get back into the action without too much wait, and 'batteries' could be lugged around for when you really need to get back into action IMMEDIATELY.
Maybe skills could be used to temporarily add a modifier to a weapon and also make the weapon take a bit more energy (and the skill itself uses a bit of energy also). This way, the weapons can be randomly generated and there can still be skills that do the same thing. It'd be kind of like an arcade-style powerup except that it comes at the push of a button =-)
Also, perhaps one skill could be transfer energy to shields (acting like a healing spell) for use in emergencies. The opposite could also be a lifesaver, getting that last bit of ammo to kill the boss before it kills you.

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Sounds like a realy good idea.. I can imagine the fast action game play.

But one comment is when reading about levels. As Armor Upgrades.. I dont know exactly what you have in mind, However if the Armor Upgrades Means New 3d Models.. Then you could have a rather large work load for your 3d Artists.

A Suggestions on Skills and Spells.. well spells anyway is one keep them.. just becous its futuristic doesnt mean that magic has gone away.. I would just recomend creating magic that would have a different feel and purpose then your heavy weapons.

Like Elemental Spells like Ice Storm, Fire ball, Lightning strike.. would only copy what a gun could already do. But if you had a Mage or Techno Mage then he could use mayby the lighter side of weapons and have spells, like
Speed Boost
Aura of Protection
Confusion (or for this game, Shattered Mind)
Mage Shield (Fuse magical energies into a techno shield)
Invisibility
Fire Shield (Shield that damages back)

or etc.. Searching the spells that are already out there for games could be a good idea, like go to google and type "Wizard spells" and skip hogwarts

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First post! Umh.
Quote:
Instead of spells, how about 'energy' is used as ammo, so you can't just keep blasting away forever without thinking about it. However, it should regenerate quite quickly so you can get back into the action without too much wait, and 'batteries' could be lugged around for when you really need to get back into action IMMEDIATELY.

Think I'd prefer to use energy just for special abilities/skills rather than ammo.
Quote:
Also, I was thinking that each character should always have two weapons, one 'normal' blaster and one that acts kind of like a grenade launcher, so there would be two classes of weapons and each one could be randomized (and a 'grenade launcher' without explosive or AOE would essentially shoot bouncy 'lead' so to speak). This would allow the game to feel a bit more arcade-like and allow some strategy etc. It also fills the 'shield' slot that would exist in diablo and adds a bit of variety.
Alternately, maybe 'Bouncy' should be a modifier and any two weapons could be dual-wielded.

What you could do is to make 3 different weapon types, say, light, medium and heavy. Medium would be more powerful than light and heavy more powerful than medium. Not all classes would be able to wield the heavy weapons, or dual wield things (some classes could be able to dual wield light weapons, or all classes could dual wield light weapons while some could have a medium in their main hand and a light in their offhand, or some such). In addition, certain effects could only show up on certain weapon types (no explosives on light weapons, for example).

The different classes could have access to different skills (or something equivalent to skills, built into them suit-things), quite like in Diablo. Skills could increase the power of all weapons, certain weapon types, certain effects etc, and some skills could grant the player special abilities (eg. spend x energy to spin around firing oh-so-rappidly for y secconds, or to jump and fire at the ground beneath you (might be decent for some heavy-explosive-weapon-wielding fella if swarmed by critters)). Some could be passive while others would cost energy to use. IMO, skills should in general increase things by a percentage, so that some plasma-skill wouldn't be effective if you're not using a plasma-weapon, and some multishot-skill would be more effective the more shots your weapon fires at once by default.

That way there'd be different classes and builds that are more/less effective for certain things, and prefer certain kinds (dependant on weapon type (size) and/or its effects) of weapons.

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I figure skills would be Skills. but split up into two sections inherent skills and armor-based skills. example: the player might be a natural with stealth, his armor gives him the skills of super fast computation or defense maneuvers only done with the suit on.

Spells would be, for me, any items which give an effect. examples are: portable shields, sound disrupters, satelite guided lasers, mini tanks that capture enemies and not be detected (or very hard to detect).

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Original post by Extrarius
Instead of "rocket launcher", you'd be able to find a blaster with "Explosive: 5 Meters" as a kind of 'magic modifier' (think rares in diablo 2)

Not sure I like that idea. Things can get *too* generic too. Imagine Diablo 2 with *only* rares. No different weapon types, just rare versions of the same basic weapon.
Boooring. Elegant system, but boring. [wink]

Instead, Diablo defines a whole range of basic weapons with unique graphics and stats. And then they add random/procedural bonuses *on top* of that.

Being able to look at a rocket launcher and say "Wow, a rocket launcher! Awesome, I want that" is a pretty important part a game. Looking at "Weapon_Template #345 with +2 explosive radius is just not the same.

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I don't think a mage class belongs mainly because the type of damage they do is duplicated by guns and explosives. Psionics is an interesting idea but I'm not sure how well it lends itself to the more arcade style of play. Also, why mess with what people know? Is there any reason to call it anything other then experience? That's what it is but when you rename it you remove that instant association people get when they read experience.

One thing that kept a lot of people playing Diablo was their unique weapons and in D2 and D2:LoD it was the set items. After a time mindlessly blasting enemies gets boring, especially if all you find are slightly different versions of weapons you have already found. Once you see one of those gold or green items though it becomes a clickfest to get to it. So what kind of history do you have that would support those unique or set type items? Instead of an alien invasion why not set it in more of a cyber punk type world ala Shadowrun? It had a mix of magic and low tech and hightech that worked quite well. You could then arrange a number of excuses to roam through crumbling cities killing people.

Another thing that I think you might be missing is the swarms in Diablo. What happens when all of your enemies have ranged attacks like you? It becomes a matter of who has the best armor/weapon because you both have to be a certain distance to shoot each other which ultimately makes you vulerable. In Diablo most of the enemies were melee which gives you a chance to break away fromt he action to regroup or to just run if need be. It gives you a chance to corral enemies so that your spell casters can annihilate them. Much lower level characters could help in a battle by running around distracting some of the enemies. If all of your enemies were ranged attackers then they would just retreat shooting at the "distracter" and not giving him a chance to divert their fire much.

Anyway, just a few thoughts. I am very interested in this project and a Diablo clone is something I have contemplated working on for quite a while.

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Original post by Manic_Gamer
[...]But one comment is when reading about levels. As Armor Upgrades.. I dont know exactly what you have in mind, However if the Armor Upgrades Means New 3d Models.. Then you could have a rather large work load for your 3d Artists.[...]
I plan on the player characters always being inside a kind of 'powered armor' like that worn by Samus, so most upgrades will be icons that you drop into a slot on your suit. They might change the color of the suit, but very few items will actually have any physical appearance. I think for items lying in-game, it'll just be a generic square-ish 'techy thingy'. Maybe the items have different colored auras to represent what it is (yellow for shields, blue for weapon, green for suit-slot module, etc).
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[...]A Suggestions on Skills and Spells.. well spells anyway is one keep them.. just becous its futuristic doesnt mean that magic has gone away.. I would just recomend creating magic that would have a different feel and purpose then your heavy weapons.[...]
I don't like the idea of adding magic. Magic and tech can mix in wonderful ways in games like ShadowRun, but it's just not the way I see my game world. Psionics is ok, but I'm still having a hard time thinking up effects that don't belong elsewhere (on weapons, as suit modules, etc). Most positive abilities ('buffs') already belong on items of different types, and duplicating them as spells or skills seems redundant.

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Original post by Gnarf
[...]Think I'd prefer to use energy just for special abilities/skills rather than ammo.[...]
Sure, but there needs to be a decent selection of skills/spells/etc that you'll use often for that to make any sense.
Quote:
[...]What you could do is to make 3 different weapon types, say, light, medium and heavy. Medium would be more powerful than light and heavy more powerful than medium. Not all classes would be able to wield the heavy weapons, or dual wield things (some classes could be able to dual wield light weapons, or all classes could dual wield light weapons while some could have a medium in their main hand and a light in their offhand, or some such). In addition, certain effects could only show up on certain weapon types (no explosives on light weapons, for example).[...]
A problem with this is that it sounds rather arbitrary. Also, it depends on classes that don't yet exist (and making classes solely for different weapon-wielding abilities would be odd imo, though perhaps that could be a skill).
Quote:
[...]Skills could increase the power of all weapons, certain weapon types, certain effects etc,[...]
I really don't like those kinds of skills, because it can be _extremely_ frustrating to find a new item that is far better than you current item only to find it's worthless to you because you didn't know that kind of weapon was good and put all your points in 'Axe' instead of 'Lance'. At the very least, this kind of skill mandates some way to 'unspend' points.
Quote:
[...]spend x energy to spin around firing oh-so-rappidly for y secconds, or to jump and fire at the ground beneath you (might be decent for some heavy-explosive-weapon-wielding fella if swarmed by critters)). Some could be passive while others would cost energy to use.[...]
These are decent skill ideas, and definitely more arcade-like. I'm still not sure there is enough to make distinct classes with their own skill trees. If there aren't enough skills that one will generally be quite helpful at any time, mana/energy won't be a resource so much as a waste of time and screen space.
Quote:
[...]That way there'd be different classes and builds that are more/less effective for certain things, and prefer certain kinds (dependant on weapon type (size) and/or its effects) of weapons.[...]
Well, there should already be better/worse builds in the system as is, since taking a slow-firing explosive weapon means you need to have backup (either an ally with a faster weapon or your secondary weapon is essentially a submachinegun).

Quote:
Original post by Alpha_ProgDes
I figure skills would be Skills. but split up into two sections inherent skills and armor-based skills. example: the player might be a natural with stealth, his armor gives him the skills of super fast computation or defense maneuvers only done with the suit on.

Spells would be, for me, any items which give an effect. examples are: portable shields, sound disrupters, satelite guided lasers, mini tanks that capture enemies and not be detected (or very hard to detect).
While those are good ideas, I'm not sure how well they fit into the arcade-ish type of gameplay I'm aiming for. For example, a laser tripmine could be useful, but I'm not sure there will be enough tight spaces to make it meaningfull. A proximity mine/grenade, on the other hand could be very useful, but it makes more sense as either a single-use item or as a secondary weapon.

Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
[...]Also, why mess with what people know? Is there any reason to call it anything other then experience? That's what it is but when you rename it you remove that instant association people get when they read experience.[...]
Sure, it's labeled experience, but it doesn't represent quite the same thing (even though it works exactly the same way). Such shallow games don't mess with what people know, they just make up different excuses =-)
Quote:
[...]One thing that kept a lot of people playing Diablo was their unique weapons and in D2 and D2:LoD it was the set items. [...] So what kind of history do you have that would support those unique or set type items?[...]
Well, the game takes place in a huge top-secret underground military labratory, so just about anything as far as equipment goes could be made unique. As far as set items, I was thinking of having the random items give bonuses that would encourage the use of groups of equipment (such as "+X% explosion radius"), especially in "item enhancement modules" (that fill slots aka 'sockets' in items). However, making 'uniques but more common with more bonuses when used together' isn't any different than uniques IMO, so it's also easily possible.
One simple thing to do would be to steal ideas from other game, such as making a doom-like BFG as a unique item, a redeemer from unreal tournament, etc. As far as what to base sets on, I'm not really sure. Any ideas?
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[...]Instead of an alien invasion why not set it in more of a cyber punk type world ala Shadowrun? It had a mix of magic and low tech and hightech that worked quite well.[...]
I don't want my game to be shadowrun-esque. In fact, my visualization of the game world is almost the exact opposite - a very ordered, clean, shiny environment (think cleanroom). That is, until the player shows up and firefights break out.
Quote:
[...]Another thing that I think you might be missing is the swarms in Diablo. What happens when all of your enemies have ranged attacks like you?[...]
They don't =-) The aliens had superb shields that rendered ranged weapons useless, so the arms race switched to mostly melee with a few special ranged weapons that can pierce shields. Since they were fighting melee among themselves, they stopped wearing the shield technology and instead switched to heavy anti-melee armors. Lucky for the players, humans took a different tech path and have shields that work decently against both ranged and melee attacks. Of course, the best shields were being worked on in the lab, so you'll have to salvage them if you want Real Ultimate Power =-)

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I really don't like those kinds of skills, because it can be _extremely_ frustrating to find a new item that is far better than you current item only to find it's worthless to you because you didn't know that kind of weapon was good and put all your points in 'Axe' instead of 'Lance'. At the very least, this kind of skill mandates some way to 'unspend' points.

Sorta agree and sorta disagree. If you chose 'Axe' because you wanted to chop heads off of folks, then I don't see the problem, as a lance is no good for that. If you chose 'Axe' and there's no real difference between axes and swords in terms of gameplay, then that's a problem.

Anyways. I'll just add an example here, that can be considered adding to my previous post or addressing comments on the previous post where appropriate :P

(some of the things here, like using cooldowns rather than energy, are sorta just for-the-sake-of-an-example)

No energy. Activated skills use cooldowns (some skills can use shared cooldowns). 3 kinds of armor suits, and 3 kinds of weapons (light, medium, heavy).

3 classes.

One class with a lighter armor-suit thing, can wield light and medium weapons and can dual-wield light weapons. It runs faster than the heavier classes and has low-cooldown jump and roll skills that are quite effective for avoiding various attacks. It also has a kick ability that knocks an enemy away and dazes it for a little while. This class relies on its speed and abilities to avoid being swarmed by enemies while taking'em out somewhat randomly (firing all over the everything while really focusing on avoiding enemies/damage).

One class with a medium armor-suit thing, can wield light, medium and heavy weapons (no dual wielding). When wielding heavy weapons it moves slower. It's got an ability to do double-shots, shooting twice at once, and can do that jump'n-fire-at-the-ground ting. This class can take out grouped enemies quite easily, but has a harder time if the enemies are more spread out, particulary if they are also using ranged attacks.

One class with a heavier shield than others, can wield light and medium weapons (no dual wielding). It can do low-cooldown charges, dealing damage to enemies in its mellee range while charging, (sorta-)low-cooldown 360 degree spins dealing little damage but knocking back enemies in mellee range, and high-cooldown 360 degree spins dealing massive damage to all enemies in mellee range. This class charges around, trying to get swarmed by mellee enemies (knocking them back every once in a while if still waiting for more to come nearby) then killing off loads with the spin. It wouldn't do as well against ranged enemies, unless it could somehow lure them to come close.

Of course, all of this could be achieved in without classes, perhaps allowing for certain combinations of them and such (and it could probably be more skills/abilities/classes; those are from-the-top-of-my-head stuff, sorta). Anyways: I wouldn't mind that much that I might find a really awesome weapon that wasn't all that interesting to this kind of character, or couldn't be wielded, as I chose to build that kind of character because of the way it'd play (not because it'd be oh-so-powerful), which would either way be different if I was using that weapon I'd just found. That said, it's just a matter of opinion; if it's not what you're going for, then it's not what you're going for :) You could just as well let all those abilities be available to any character (or any character of a certain level) or whatever...

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Hellgate London (soon to be released) is exactly a Diablo clone set in a sci-fi world where you collect guns & armor & ammo. It plays _exactly_ like Diablo and has procedurally generated levels.

-me

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Original post by Palidine
Hellgate London (soon to be released) is exactly a Diablo clone set in a sci-fi world where you collect guns & armor & ammo. It plays _exactly_ like Diablo and has procedurally generated levels.

-me


And takes place 3 years after Diablo 2035! Although I'm not sure how they play exactly alike since it seems like Hellgate London is a first person game.

Edit: Ah... looks like it can be 3rd person as well. Still not quite the same feel as Diablo. Closer to Phantasy Star Online except slower.

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Space Hack ( http://spacehack.rebelmind.com/en/main ) is a Diablo clone in Sci-Fi theme released somewhere around middle 2005.

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Original post by Gnarf
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I really don't like those kinds of skills, because it can be _extremely_ frustrating to find a new item that is far better than you current item only to find it's worthless to you because you didn't know that kind of weapon was good and put all your points in 'Axe' instead of 'Lance'. At the very least, this kind of skill mandates some way to 'unspend' points.

Sorta agree and sorta disagree. If you chose 'Axe' because you wanted to chop heads off of folks, then I don't see the problem, as a lance is no good for that. If you chose 'Axe' and there's no real difference between axes and swords in terms of gameplay, then that's a problem.[...]
In a game like Counter-Strike, it's a real problem if weapons aren't distinct and yet still ballanced. In a game like Diablo, there isn't really a way to make weapons distinct because all the things that are different about them (damage per hit, swings per second, etc) are also different between the same class of weapons (not only do you have 'hatchet' and 'great axe', but you have 'great axe +5 speed') and thus the divisions only affect the range of attributes (instead of 'hatchet', call it 'great axe +1 speed' and the difference is only graphical).

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[Classes]
Your classes don't really fit the kind of gameplay diablo has IMO. Most of the skills/spells listed so far in this thread seem to be really targetted at a kind of tactical/stealth gameplay that just doesn't exist in this type of game IMO. I am also thinking about a game somewhat similar to counter-strike except iso/ortho (Infantry, perhaps?), but that game would be only superfically similar to this one (both top-down, etc).

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Actually made a futuristic dungeon crawler-ish game some time ago [and boy was it terrible looking, but the mechanics were fun and it made a lot of sense within it's own context. I liked it, but programmer art means I'm the only one who will ever like it :P], and while it wasn't a direct adaptation of diablo, as you're describing [which sounds pretty neat], it was future-ish in setting. My general method of implementation is that it took place on a spaceship, that got shot down, and crashlanded on an alien planet, and the ship has since been infested with quite a number of local alien wildlife [mean critters, people-eaters], and a bit of a dispatch of those who originally shot your ship down, that have come to assure that there are no survivers [recon teams, robot probes, those kinda things]. In star-trek fashion, the ship was civilian/military/scientific all roled into one, and the military section of the ship was destroyed by the weapons used to shoot it down. The civilian/research/general city like sections had weapons illegalized, and were only allowed in military sections [you don't want some dork shooting a hole in the hull of your pressurized spaceship]. Boils down to what is effectively a fully formed, but largely abandoned, futuristic city with sections of the outer landscape, thrown at an alien planet like an apple at pavement :P. Weapons mostly had a certain improvised and hand-crafted feel. Electrical discharge weapons made of old ship circuitry, guns machined out of reckage, that sorta thing [no kill-everything laser super guns or anything], with improvised armor to deal with a situation that was more or less sprung on a space-city turned planet-crater.

It was fun, but ugly as sin, and so short :P.... really wish i had developed it better.

Anyway!, yes make it! we need more futuristic games in general that aren't FPS :P The orcs vs' human deal has been beaten to death [at least give us new fantasy creatures! stop riding tolkiens poor tired races] and space is damn sexy.

As far as spells are concerned, since those are the topic-to-add-to,could always consider them sorta like add-ons to a specialized weapon [you have your shoot-to-kill weapon, then your utility weapon, that can do neat things like push doors open, knock enemies down, put up force feilds, throw gravity at the bad guys]. For the different classes, you can have versions of the suit [heavy suit = warrior aka just a straight out grunt, light suit = rogue aka only efficient at longer ranges, carries long range weapons, relies on stealth... and a research suit that represents the wizard, using mostly the special weapon]

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You could always do what most thriller games do and put very very little ammo in the game. If you go trigger happy, you have to do melee. Makes the monsters a bit scarier when you know you only have 3 shots left. This also gives you an excuse to put in more melee weapons than normal :) Just make sure the melee weapons are consistant with the world... such as crowbars (HL + HL2), Fire axes, knives, bars. shovels, billy clubs, shock sticks / sick sticks (Minority report),

As far as psionics go, look at System Shock 2. It had psionics and it was futuristic. The type of psionics you had depended on the type of class you were. One was heavily on psionics... which you still had a device to use your psionics through. And the other two classes only had psionics as more of a backup or support roll like healing and second sight or something like that.

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One thing I was thinking about doing in my game is scaling everything both down an up. What I mean by that is that levels/rares/etc would come less often, but be a very noticable increase in power.
For example, in Diablo 2 when you level up, you get 5 attribute points. While that may seem like a lot, after playing for a while that tiny difference doesn't really matter much. By the time you make it to 'hell' difficulty, items are giving far larger bonuses than levels. At the beginning of the game, level requirements come into play almost as often as attribute requrements.
If, in my game, you get 3 points(scaled down) to spend on attributes, but 1 point of attribute is about the same as 5 points in d2 (scaled up), the difference will be far more noticable and thus acts as a larger reward.
In d2, skill points after the first offer RAPIDLY diminishing returns, so in many cases it's better to go for breadth instead of depth. The same won't be quite as true in my game, but it must be to some degree or people would only buy a single skill. In addition to that, each point can make a much larger difference if levels are designed to come less often and they should make such a difference to make levels worth it.

Now, if levels don't come often, there don't need to be as many skills, and they can be more powerful. For example, a skill that temporarily gives your gun 3-way multishot (or triples the multishot if already present) could exist even though it would be VERY powerful. Or maybe it gives ((SkillLevel-1)/3)+2 multishot (2 for level 1-3, 3 for 4-6 etc) with increasing duration and decreasing penalties to damage (ie at level 1 it might do -50% damage, so it just makes you hit more enemies but not do more damage, but at level 2 its -45% so you do 110% damage total, at level 4 its -56% so you do 130% damage {3x shots}). In addition, there could be stuff like temporary invulnerability, infravision, etc (maybe there are different skill trees and you get a point for each one?)

This would also apply to item modifiers. I don't like the way that diablo has +1% defense for a total of 3 defense on a low-level item. I'm thinking that that kind of modifier might come in increments of 25 percentage points, and will always be enough to add at least 1 point (so a 2-damage weapon will not have +25% but might have +50%, etc). Since numbers are smaller but represent larger amounts, the bonuses are not only high but much more meaningful. By scaling everything in this way, I'm hoping that maybe finding a 'rare' (item with many modifiers) will be an awesome event, kind of like finding a unique in diablo 1 was (until you noticed your two-'fix item was much, much better). Also, I think that most modifiers will come in pairs - one that is a static bonus and another that is a per-suit-level bonus, both affecting the same item property, so that items will last longer (as they would not with only static bonuses) but not indefinitely (as they might with only level-based bonuses).

Now, despite all this, I think it might be a good idea to make single-modifier items (without the pairs) drop rather frequently, because it allows you to fill your equipment slots as you want and it gives you a chance to have backups when your ('rare') primary weapon isn't appropriate (ie a high-damage gun for bosses, explosive multishot for everything else, etc).

Thoughts/Comments/Suggestions?

[Edited by - Extrarius on May 26, 2006 5:18:12 PM]

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Well, I would not like a futuristic game, where you can magically multiply your shots. In my opinion a sci-fi stetting should have higher standards regarding realism then a fantasy setting.
I guess finding enough powers to generate diverse charate builds can be a problem.
I would prefer powers like:
Spray'n'Pray: Conelike area damage for automatic weapons
Spot Weakness: From time to time a "weakness mark" appears on an enemy and disapperears after a short period of time, shooting this enemy leads to extra damage or something like that.

Along with some passive weapon skills you should get some nice selection of possible char builds.
I would like to see powers that are at least "action-movie-realistic".

Item requirements should be some kind of DRM-scheme, doing some subquest(can be even simple ones like in Fate) for some corporate suit and he will grant you licences for using their hardware- if you can find or afford it.

You might want to look into http://www.restricted-area.net/ a futuristic diablo clone. When I played it, it was kinda bugridden - including major showstoppers like monster level scaling producing unbeatable boss enemys.

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Quote:
Original post by mctb32
Space Hack ( http://spacehack.rebelmind.com/en/main ) is a Diablo clone in Sci-Fi theme released somewhere around middle 2005.


I remember reading up on this game and then this thread reminded me of it right off the bat.

Not saying that you shouldn't go on with the project, sounds fun. In fact I'm actually in the process of "mind digesting" an idea of my own but in a more modern environment.

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Quote:
Original post by Nostyle
Well, I would not like a futuristic game, where you can magically multiply your shots. In my opinion a sci-fi stetting should have higher standards regarding realism then a fantasy setting.[...]
Science fiction is as much fantasy as anything Tolken has written. If a flux capacitor can travel through time, and tachyon emitters can be powerful beam weapons, I don't see what stops a weapon from being modified to shoot multiple projectiles. Of course, unless it's reactor/battery/etc is designed for that, you can't do it constantly or it might overload the weapon (causing X seconds before it can be fired again, maybe a big explosion, etc)
Quote:
[...]I would prefer powers like:
Spray'n'Pray: Conelike area damage for automatic weapons
Spot Weakness: From time to time a "weakness mark" appears on an enemy and disapperears after a short period of time, shooting this enemy leads to extra damage or something like that.

Along with some passive weapon skills you should get some nice selection of possible char builds.
I would like to see powers that are at least "action-movie-realistic".[...]
List any you can think of. That is part of the purpose of this thread =-)

Quote:
[...]Item requirements should be some kind of DRM-scheme, doing some subquest(can be even simple ones like in Fate) for some corporate suit and he will grant you licences for using their hardware- if you can find or afford it.[...]
This sounds too 'now' for my tastes. Also, my idea is that most of the technology you recover would be from the aliens themselves.
I was thinking that one passive ability might be 'salvage', which helps you 'find' more items by being better able to recover whatever technology survived the firefight, and an active ability 'Field Engineering' that lets you 'identify' unknown technology. The reason 'identify' is marked off is that it wouldn't be like diablo where an item is fixed in type and you're merely discovering what it is - there would be some interface for picking what you want and some chance you'd get that or something similar (because you're not picking up COTS technology, you're rigging up whatever parts you can find to do your bidding).
In addition to that, as an extension to the 'energy as ammo', I was thinking that maybe each part has an energy requirement and the suit would have to have enough to power whatever you use. Most instant-use (vs always-on) items would have some kind of reservoir that they would charge when not in use, and when used power would come from there (ie a 'clip' for weapons, shields only protect so much depending on capacitor, etc) and it would charge from the suit power supply when not full. This way weapons and shields could have HUGE energy constraints that can't be met by the suit's power supply but you can still use them as long as you make sure you're out of sight a second or two after every few shots. Different weapon types will of course have different requirements, and your basic blaster won't take any extra energy while a multishot plasma cannon might take so much that, while recharging, the rest of your items are inactive. "Self-Powered" or "Low-Power Use" could be 'magic' item attributes that can really help out for the big guns.

There could also be other concerns, such as the standard strength attribute. Power armor multiplies strength, but with an increase in lifting power comes a corresponding increase in weight. A BFG sure is nice and effective, but it also weighs 3 tons (plus 1 more for the optional gun-powering fusion reactor). Of course, it would only apply to logically large equipment - a basic shield belt would not have a strength requirement, but larger weapons (more modifiers) and better suit modules (extra power generation, advanced multi-layer shields etc) might have some. Combining this with the bidirectional scaling, there won't be things requiring str scores from 5 to 100 in steps of 5 - I'm thinking I'd like to keep all attributes in a 1-10 range.

Another concern might be parts available - perhaps most advanced items (multiple modifiers) come through some kind of crafting system, and you just aren't likely to get high-power parts (think gems/runes/jewels in diablo 2) until you get to the later floors of the 'inverted tower'.

Really, this isn't meant to be exactly a diablo clone - I'm just using diablo as a base because it has many elements I want. Think of this more like "diablo meets the arcade" with elements from games like scrolling shoot-em-ups and beat-em-ups to make it faster and less cRPG-centric.

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