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GrimRupert

Looking for suggestions...

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Greetings. Me and two or three other guys are learning C++ in school (I am four chapters ahead of my class and going), and, starting next Tuesday, are going to begin making a game based on the Alien Legacy, the four really good movies made by Fox. I am going to be the Artist as well, and, for this, I believe I should give a few features of the game. -A nice, SNES look to it that will make some remember the days of Zelda: A Link to the Past and Super Metroid (Zelda view, Metroid creepiness mixed with that of the first and second movies). -An assortment of weapons: the Pistol, the Shotgun, the Flamethrower, the Pulse Rifle and the Mini-Gun. -An assortment of tools to help get through the areas, like the Motion Tracker from the second movie (if possible), Motion Bombs, Grenades, and also a Blow Torch from the second movie. -Having to fight Fighter Aliens, Wall Crawlers, Aliens in the shafts, Aliens from under the floor, Dog Aliens from the third movie and Facehuggers (not to mention the Hive Queen). -Armor Upgrades to increase your chances of survival (hehehe....maybe). -As a later upgrade, a POSSIBLE online play ability, depending on how well we can work with DirectDraw, if we can. -Hopefully a simple use of the Arrow keys, shift key, z, x, c and v keys, and space bar, and hopefully nothing more (including the ability to strafe left, right and backwards). Now then, I would like to know, especially from other Alien fanatics, what YOU would like to see in the game (and no acid spitting. I know it was in the fourth movie, but movie 4 was practically a fan-fic. Especially since Dan ''O Brannon, one of the two creators, screenplay writer for Alien, co-story writer for Aliens and co-screenplay writer for Alien 3, had nothing to do with Ressurection). Thank you for reading this post. I will update you people whenever I can on our game, and try using whatever suggestions you can make. School sucks, people suck, family sucks, life sucks, reality sucks... When all else fails, Playstation prevails...

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First off, I hope you have your legal counsel ready when Fox decides they want their pound of flesh Second, please don''t hardcode the input keys, nothing is more annoying than having to learn someone else''s key pattern to play your game.

Have you designed a plot yet, or are you just going to glom all these features together as a proof of concept and then make a game out of it?

-------------
-WarMage
...and you had BETTER put some mad shouts out to H.R. Giger!!! (rhymes with eager!)...

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I'm a big fan of Aliens. You could make this a straight shooter, but I think you'd lose something important.

I think you'd capture the feeling of the series if you focus on making the aliens formidable, the odds incredible, and the methods to fight them diverse. The crew of the Sulaco didn't just mow down the Aliens left and right. They did a lot of running backwards while shooting, locking doors, evading, and hiding out. They had to do this because the aliens were so tough and scary that they couldn't go toe to toe with them.

For a Zelda type game, I think it would be cool to add:

* Hidden info - You can't tell where the Aliens are, there's darkness and line of sight obstructions

* Stealth - Maybe steal some ideas from Away Team or Commandos, where line of sight and distance to enemies determine if you can be seen and heard. Running would be loud and fast, sneaking slow and quiet

* Barricades - At a minimum, lockable doors (that Aliens can eventually bust through). Even better, the ability to push stuff like desks or bookshelves in the way, or use explosives to blow up a wall & create debris

* Limited ammo - Again, you're not so scared when you can gun you way through them

* Acid Damage - Even done like those acid spitting dogs in Diablo would be fine... Kill them, and they leave a pool that does damage when you walk through it. Shoot them when only 1 square away, and you have a chance to take damage

* Shoot / move Independence - Shoot one way, run another

* Environmental Puzzles - Sneak over to a switch, turn it on, and lock the aliens in a room; or put down a trap or bait to lure them

* Aliens afraid of fire - Now, how much flamer ammo do you have left?

Fortunately, a lot of this doesn't take a lot of programming know-how and I think improves the gameplay a lot. (And I'd follow Warmage's advice, in that you might not exactly want to make them Aliens per se)

PS: Two good games to check out (their bargain bin now) are Incubation and Enemy Infestation. Both were a kind of puzzle-y, and the second had really bad voice acting, but they might inspire you.

--------------------
Just waiting for the mothership...

Edited by - Wavinator on September 21, 2001 7:18:24 PM

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Certainly try to find and play Incubation.It had one of the coolest features I''ve ever seen : sometimes when the aliens moved, the camera would show what they were seeing in first person.So you could watch them run up to your helpless character and tear him apart...
Muahaha...

Jonas Kyratzes - Progressive Game Design & Development
"God is silent. Now if only man would shut up." - Woody Allen

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I’m a huge Aliens fan, so pardon me if get a little self righteous. I’ll try to keep this short.


Things to think about:

Remember that the resemble aliens whatever they “come out of”. So think of some new hybrids. (even fish with long black bony blade tails etc…) Every movie following the first failed to get this right, and take advantage of it.

Have you played Aliens Vs. Predator? Do it now. Cause that was pretty damn good alien blasting play.

Definitely take Wavinator’s excellent advice about not being able to match the aliems in melee. Just read his post again.

Don’t the mistake of Alien 4. Remember how we were so scared about the idea that the aliens getting to earth? That was stupid. If they get on earth, you could just drop a bomb on them and kill them all. One reason they can be so scary is because somtmes when you have a big gun –you can’t shoot them cause their blood will eat a hole in the space ship! Remember Alien 1 “-its got a wonderful defense mechenism. You don’t dare kill it!”

SO:

Have killed aliens blood eat a hole in the floor beneath them. A real hole which the player could fall into and have to jump over.

Color the walls and floors systematically so the player knows if he is on an exterior wall. (So the player knows if the floor has no other floor beneath it!)

This will REALLY keep the player on their toes, and keep them from being too trigger happy. It will also generate the kind of suspense Wavinator was talking about.

This could get even better if the vacuum didn’t kill you instantly, but started sucking your health down fast, and started sliding you a little towards the hole. Picture this: Flashing lights and sirens go off. The player starts loosing health right away. They have to get to a door they can close, fast! And they have to not get trapped behind automatically closing pressure doors too.

Every door could have a little flashing light to display weather or not there is a vacuum behind it.



This would really drive a claustrophobic fear into the guts of your players, and separate your alien game form the rest in realism. You could have pressure suits with a certain amount of air, and which could only take a certain amount of hits before leaking... so many cool things you could do with this.



zTn

“I sparred with creatures from the nine hells, and they kicked my ass.”

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Reply to WarMage: The game is going to be freeware, so Fox won''t have any reason to sue or whatever. Non-profit organization so far
As for plot, basically, during the events on the Auriga (Alien: Resurrection), a military ship recieves a faint and scrambled transmission from a recently downed shuttle on Lv-426. When the Military ship lands, it finds the shuttle landed near the destroyed colony''s Atomic Shelter, the only thing left OF the colony (remember how the colony exploded in Aliens?). The shuttle, which held a vast number of people, is empty, and the marines are sent in to explore (hopefully we can devise a Multiplayer mode and/or on-line play mode).

Trust me, I know you gotta plan ahead a LOT for a game (I used to use RPGToolkit, which was decent, but not as good as using C++).

Reply to Wavinator: Thank you for your suggestions. There are several types and ways to defeat the aliens. For example, in order to defeat the WallCrawlers (which use Guerilla tactics), you must leave motion bombs on the walls. To kill the air duct crawlers, you must activate fans in the air ducts (boy are we gonna build puzzles around this > ). The ones under the floor we are trying to figure ways to kil them other than tossing grenades into the floor holes.
When it comes to acid damage, I''d do so, but there will be times when you got so many coming at you you have no choice but to walk over dead bodies. And, as for feeling as if 20 against 1 is unfair, the Pulse Rifle and Mini-Gun makes short work of them. However, you may want to use tools and such as well, or else your ammo is gone.
There will be a strafing option so you can shoot in one direction while walking in others, so you don''t find yourself cornered.
I will think of that book case option. We are including the blowtorch from the second movie, as well as the Robot Sentries (sometimes good to have there, sometimes not).
I appreciate your suggestions and shall consider them.

Reply to zTn: Dude, you are talking to an Alien fanatic trying to have as much from the movies as possible.
I cannot include vacuum since they are on a planet. And, as I said, there will be times when it''s gonna be 20 aliens coming at you down the hallway and you can either A: Try to run (which never works/ed), B: Use yer automatics, or C: Use everything you have. So, holes in the floor is a not so good idea, though I was thinking of using it at first. I may try using it some other way, though.
Next, the furthest I am going is the dog-alien, like in Alien 3. I am aware Aliens take on the attributes of the creature they gestate out of, and will use this in a 3-D comic I''m gonna make of Aliens (also non-profit).

As for games to be played, I have Alien Trilogy and Alien Resurrection the Game, both of which are good. I cannot wait until Aliens versus Predator 2. I would get those games you suggested, but I am trying to save my money until I get a new job (recently sent an application to Funcoland).

Thank you and see you all later.

School sucks, people suck, family sucks, life sucks, reality sucks...
When all else fails, Playstation prevails...

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quote:
Original post by GrimRupert
The game is going to be freeware, so Fox won't have any reason to sue or whatever. Non-profit organization so far

I don't think that matters at all. Even if it's free, you don't have the right to use their copyrights/trademarks etc. to market your own product.

So be careful, and don't be surprised if you get sued.

On another note: Have you played a game called "Alien Breed" and its sequel "Alien Breed: Tower Assault". They're old Amiga games that have been ported to the PC (DOS) and can probably be found on some abandonware site if you search google. They were heavily influenced by the Alien movies, and at least the first one was pretty good in my opinion. Especially at the higher levels it was kinda creepy (or perhaps it's just that I was a lot younger back then ). Anyway, you should have a look at them. They are topdown shooters with some simple puzzles thrown in.

Edited by - Dactylos on September 24, 2001 1:44:18 PM

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quote:
Original post by GrimRupert
The game is going to be freeware, so Fox won''t have any reason to sue or whatever. Non-profit organization so far


quote:
Original post by Dactylos
I don''t think that matters at all. Even if it''s free, you don''t have the right to use their copyrights/trademarks etc. to market your own product.

So be careful, and don''t be surprised if you get sued.


Just to back this up, keep in mind what Paramount did to the fans of Star Trek who were posting material from Gene Roddenberry''s universe on their websites. Paramount was pretty pinheaded about sending cease and desist orders to many of the most popular sites. I''m not sure if they actually went forward with lawsuits, but the threat very much was there.

--------------------
Just waiting for the mothership...

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Thanks for your concern over being sued. If Fox gets pissed, I''ll just remove it from the Internet (though I plan on having it say "Based off of the by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation and the creations from the minds of Dan ''O Brannon, H. R. Giger and.....the other guy...." I gotta check the credits on my Alien video again.

Also, I would like to say that I just made my first actual program w/o using the exercise from a programming book. It''s a simple calculator program that asks for two numbers (one at a time, of course), asks to input a number representing either addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, and then gives you the answer and shuts down (or shuts down immediately if you input the wrong number).
I am hoping to add characters and repetition to the program as soon as possible. After all, we all gotta start somewhere.

School sucks, people suck, family sucks, life sucks, reality sucks...
When all else fails, Playstation prevails...

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About the legal issue here, at the moment I''m producing a prequel to Final Fantasy 6 (if you haven''t ever played it, do so now). It''s ''by the fans, for the fans'' so to speak, and we haven''t encountered any problems. Sakaguchi himself actually complimented the old producer on his work for it (his friend works at SquareSoft and showed him), so you might be surprised.

Then again, the big guys at Fox studios might turn out to be idiots...who knows these days?

-----------------
Matthew Myers
Executive Producer
MAZE Interactive Entertainment
Fierce Legends Software
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