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supesfan

The steps to adding game mechanics?

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Hello everyone,

 

I was wondering, how in the world do these professional game developers add the kind of mechanics you see in games these days? I understand that "game mechanics" can be a term that is slightly interpreted differently by people, but what I mean by game mechanics is the things that the player uses or does in order to actually play the game. For example:

 

My first thought is a game like Batman Arkham City, which was incredible!

 

In order to progress in the game you had to fight people with a somewhat complex yet simple combat system that they implimented. Thats what I mean by game mechanics.

 

To be specific, how do you actually go about adding mechanics like that in your game? How do you  make your own fighting system like that?

 

Does it involve rigging your character, and then adding  animations before importing the charcater into the game engine?

 

I am not even sure how to go about researching something like this? Any advice?  I would like to make a combat system of my own?

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how do you actually go about adding mechanics like that in your game? How do you make your own fighting system like that?
Does it involve rigging your character, and then adding animations before importing the charcater into the game engine?

 

Are you asking a programming question? Are you asking a graphics/animation question? Or are you asking a game design question?

If the first one, this belongs in For Beginners. If the second, this belongs in Visual Arts. I don't think you're asking the third (the subject of this forum, Game Design).

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This has to be one of the vaguest questions I've seen in a long while.

First off, the combat system in a Batman game is actually a wide array of game mechanics, each with their own pacing and distinct feel.

Don't let the fact that the game makes it easy for you to learn this system fool you into believing this is by any stretch 'simple'.

You probably wouldn't believe the amount of time that countless individuals have spent to get the right timing, that extra tidbit of feedback, that additional tool/combat move/combo just to make sure that, in general, the combat would feel great... and up to the very last minute, despite having almost everything, it must've been fairly dull.

 


To be specific, how do you actually go about adding mechanics like that in your game? How do you make your own fighting system like that?

It takes many visionaries. From my limited experience in this specific type of system, I'd say that, at the very least, you'd need someone with clear creative control (game director or game designer), someone with a more down-to-earth approach (game designer) and someone to actually prototype the actual idea (gameplay programmer).

Then, you need someone with clear modeling skills, a rigger, and an animator just to get your core character and a dummy enemy into place. You can probably start trying stuff from then on.

Before the end, you'll need someone to texture, quite possibly an FX artist of some sort (for all of the nifty special effects you see in combat), and a bunch of other folks I'm probably forgetting about (oh, and a sound designer, of course!)

 

On a title I've worked, they've sent the 'combat' team to train in martial arts for a few classes before even delving deeper into the actual development.

Their team was of about 10 people, 3 of which were specialist programmers (fully dedicated to the combat only), 1 was an animator, 1 was a sound effect designer, and I can't quite remember who the others were as I was not immediately tied to that subgroup.

 

If your intent is to prototype a full combat system on your own, you're looking at a lot of work. Try starting with a clear and concise idea of what you want it to feel like, then model/rig two characters (possibly one and its clone) to serve your purpose.

Then, prepare the actual animations you'll use for this, and finally delve into the actual coding/integration.

If your overall plan makes sense, you could end up with something that works.

If it looks good, do the final touches (add the textures, fx and sfx).

 

Good luck!

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Wow!, thats sounds like A LOT of work and a lot of late nights. Hey thanks for the reply though, this really helps me better understand what I wil need to do. I found this really good article online as well about animating, that cleared soe stuff up for me as well. It's here: http://www.penny-arcade.com/report/article/animation

 

Well, what I plan to do, is to use the Xbox 360 Kinect piece and probably some middleware for the animation recording, or perhaps Maya, I heard that works well too. I have studied martial Arts for a while, and I have a pretty good idea of what I want to do, however it's cleaning it all up that scares me! Anyways, thanks again.

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hey supesfan,

 

I too am impressed by the elaborate and exciting hand to hand combat afforded by Arkham City's Freeflow Combat System. I've done some research on the topic of incorporating it into a future game and came across an in-depth and informative article in the online Computer Graphics World magazine which you may find interesting. Scroll down to the Combat Choreography section of the article, which describes the lengths that Rocksteady went to implementing such an amazing combat system in their game.

 

http://www.cgw.com/Publications/CGW/2011/Volume-34-Issue-9-Dec-Jan-2012-/Mean-Streets.aspx

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