Jump to content
  • Advertisement
Sign in to follow this  
Iron Chef Carnage

Two games, one arena?

This topic is 3988 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

I was thinking about zombies, as I often do, and was thinking about a way to make a multiplayer game in which players, upon death, become zombies and have to fight against their team mates and former adversaries alike. The problem there, of course, is that the "zombies" aren't really shambling flesh-eaters, they're the same Dew-chugging gamers that were weilding imaginary SMGs moments earlier, and the temptation to eat only "enemy" players would be overwhelming. I'm framing this narrowly, but it's hard for me to describe the idea in broader terms without an example. So what if the zombies couldn't see the game arena the same way the humans did? What if you couldn't tell friend from foe and couldn't see their uniforms and couldn't say, "Jump if you're on my team" into Ventrilo and identify targets that way? In an unrelated example, let's say it's a flight game, and when your F22 gets shot down you become an alien who uses EMP powers to bust up airplanes from orbit. Your screen switches to a color-matching game, and the effectiveness of your attacks is determined by your success at the game, and there's absolutely no way for you to know which airplane you're zapping, zince there's nothing in your game interface that could even really be identified as an airplane. Doing better at this game increases your score and lets you unlock sweet new airplanes for the next round, but it cannot in any way be used tactically to achieve the goals you worked toward before dying. Thus, having more "dead guys" makes the game more dangerous for the "survivors", as a proper zombie horror situation should. Are there any examples of this being done well, or at all?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement
Well, the question there is - is there a punishment for the zombies team killing? If you remove the punishment, but also remove the reward, than there's less reason for players to try and identify their team mates.

It should also be relatively simple to provide quite a different experience for zombie players than for humans, change the rendering techniques used and how things are represented (replace the player models with something "amorphous" and generally unidentifiable and you're half way there!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What an intriguing idea. To answer your question, I don't have a clue if anyone has done anything like this successfully. I offer a complimenting idea though. What about a vampire-like theme. The only way to beat the game, is to beat the game properly of course. You die, and you can start from your last save-point or whatever, and go on. But if you choose not to start from the last save point (or whatever) than you get turned into a vampire (assuming thats what killed you) or a ghost or something, and then you have all these amazing abilities... invincibility, unlimited ammo (just bite someone etc), flying, super-speed, walk through walls, whatever. Now the people that want to beat the game can take on the challenge of the game, and the people that just wanna throw in some secret codes and cause destruction only need to get themselves killed on purpose! Awesome thought Iron Chef.

Cheers
-Scott

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My solution would be to make teams on a game to game basis meaningless after the fact.

I.E. teams are randomly assigned at the beginning of a round.

Also, if your dead your rewards are based on team accomplishments UNTIL you died, and zombie performance after.

With this set up, there is less incentive to work together after death.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So you want to bend the perspective of zombie players in a way that causes zombie behavior to make sense?

In Return, the zombies ate brains to get rid of the pain of being dead. They could only eat live brains to accomplish that.

You could implement zombie penalties and bonuses. Something like a vampire. The zombie gets weaker and weaker as it goes without flesh/brains. When very weak, a few bullets will take it out, it can't wrestle with humans very well, etc. If a zombie is very "successful", its strength could grow. Since it is just animated flesh, you could create a limitless pool of health points, where each feeding increases that pool. Since it is limitless, no kill would ever be wasted.

I don't think it will be easy to remove the friendship or team bonds that a character had when it died. Even if you do distort the representation, players will find ways to cheat the system. For example, humans could stay in some type of funky movement pattern, or give off subtle signs to help friend zombies recognize them. However, if the bonuses are big enough, and the human goal conflicts with the overall zombie goal, you may be able to convince most zombies to turn on their older friends for their newer cause.

It would also help to make humans fear proximity with zombies. You could implement some type of random infection system, where medium proximity with a single specific zombie will cause a human to get infected and die.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I regret the zombie reference now. I mean make it a totally different experience. Look at Puzzle Pirates. There, you do things like play Tetris to sail a ship. That's what I have in mind. When you die, you never see the game arena again. Your screen turns into Bejeweled, and your character in the "real" game floats at absolute random, invisible, through the map. When you get a kickass combo in Bejeweled, your ghost (unbeknownst to you) emits a pulse of destructive energy, damaging the nearest player. You have no way to know who you hurt, they have no way to know who hurt them, and at the end of the round your bejeweled score is added to your team's score, and you get a bonus for having the highest post-mortem points-per-hour.

So maybe your points will save the team, and maybe you'll kill your flag carrier, but you've got a solid reason to work hard at sabotaging living players indescriminately, and they've got a solid reason to be pissed when their best Bejeweled player bites it.

I'm talking about a total disconnect between one game experience and the other.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Iron Chef Carnage
When you die, you never see the game arena again. Your screen turns into Bejeweled, and your character in the "real" game floats at absolute random, invisible, through the map. When you get a kickass combo in Bejeweled, your ghost (unbeknownst to you) emits a pulse of destructive energy, damaging the nearest player. You have no way to know who you hurt, they have no way to know who hurt them, and at the end of the round your bejeweled score is added to your team's score, and you get a bonus for having the highest post-mortem points-per-hour.

I think you're trying too hard to disconnect the two. If my actions have some meaning within the context of the game but I don't know what the outcome is, that meaning is completely wasted to me. Sure, at the end of the game I can see "oh, I did well" or "oh, I screwed up", but at that point you might as well just flip a coin... no strategy involved. In fact, in your example doing well could potentially hurt your team, making the outcome even more random and pointless.

I like the idea of having your post-death interactivity be a different game, but you need to be able to see the effect it is having. If you want to keep players from intentionally helping their teammates, there are a number of things you can do:

1) Do you really need team play at all? Or can everyone have their own agenda?
2) Have the effects of your actions be global: instead of playing as a zombie, what if your actions cause AI-driven zombies to spawn around the map that will attack anyone?
3) Make the "goal" of the post-death game into revenge. Whatever you do in that game, it targets the person who killed you, and the only way you can return to life is if that person dies.

Those are the first three things that come to mind... whatever you end up doing, though, don't hide the effects of the players actions from him. It'll only serve to make the afterlife game frustrating.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Halo has a game option kind of like this in multiplayer. As the "zombies" kill people they turn them into more zombies. The only way to tell friend from foe eventually is that the targeting reticle turns red.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fun idea. It reminds me of a certain sci-fi book where the main character plays a video game. Unbenknown to him he actually controls real people in an actual battlefield.

If the players in the different games are not actually aware of eachother then you have a nice element of unpredictability in the games.. Who knows what havoc the players can cause to eachother without even realizing it.

A less radical idea is having a RTS type game where a player may have a typical starcraft-type view and build buildings and command units on a higher level, e.g. command armies to attack a certain location (but not micromanage their exact movements). Then you can have other players actually involved in the world in first-person as in a fps..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yes, this is being currently done by VALVe, who aquried the gem Left 4 Dead and turtle rock studios ( they seem to have a knack for finding good ips and having people make it in the scource engine)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Advertisement
×

Important Information

By using GameDev.net, you agree to our community Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.

GameDev.net is your game development community. Create an account for your GameDev Portfolio and participate in the largest developer community in the games industry.

Sign me up!