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HighTreason

My Post-Apocalyptic Life - Game Design Document

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Hello!

 

Well, here it is. The game design document I have been working on obsessively for over a week now. I realize there are a few holes still left to be filled. Some of them will be filled on the fly and some will be filled in as a I think of them and hopefully some can be filled in by suggestions from helpful folks like yourselves.

 

I know it's long and involved, but I would be very appreciative if people want to take a look at it and give me some feedback. Does it seem like a game you might want to play? What seems fun about it? What aspects do not seem very fun. What needs to be better thought-out or changed? etc etc.

 

I also know the name is kind of goofy and will probably be changed. If you have any suggestions for that, send 'em along. :-)

 

This game is about overcoming the challenges of living in a post-apocalyptic world. It is designed to be challenging and therefore maybe not designed for the casual gamer in mind. Although I hope it's tons of fun.

 

The specific numbers given through this document are starting points and the real numbers will be determined by testing and creating a balance between fun and challenge.

 

I hope some people will read it and give me some advice on how to make it the awesome game I envision it being.

 

Thanks!

Edited by HighTreason

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Not many people would read through a 28 page game manual, could you give some main points on here? I skimmed through a little bit and it seems like it would be fun.

Edited by zebrakiller

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Something I really did not see in your document was the point of view, control setup and in-world player flow. To be more specific - is it a 2D or a 3D game ? What is your navigation tool inside the game world - are you using a first person camera, are you going for an over-head position with a point-and-click control scheme or is it something totally different ? How is the player going to transition from states ? How does that tie in with the environment ? With the set up scheme, how will the player be able to interact with intractable stuff ? There are many other questions in these lines that you can ask yourself and yet are a corner stone of the experience.

Another thing I was really missing in your document was the basis of the atmosphere, look, feel and aesthetics of the entire world. Yep, sure, it's post-apocalyptic so that doesn't lead to sunshine and happiness obviously, however execution can be done on this in multiple ways. Is it a world without hope that tends to grind on the player's mind ? Is it a world that has no short-term happy end and you are in full survival mode ? Are the set pieces suppose to scare you ? Or is this a world that starts from the beginning - one kingdom falls and another starts to show itself. Is it a world where after despair - hope comes ? Do the set pieces show more nature or more destruction and aftermath of the apocalypse ? This is very important for the overall tone that you are going to be setting and for the entire experience as well.

 

If I go through the document again, I'll probably find something else as well, mostly due to the fact that the stuff I mentioned above is missing.

Iterate on your document and see what you are missing and where you can improve. Think of the cornerstone things you are missing. Add them in, then iterate again and again.

 

-- Small edit here --

 

You should really add the platform that you are striving to develop for as well as your target audience. This is a MUST answer question. Who are you making the game for and how will they be able to reach it ?

 

Just my two cents on the topic, hope it helps.

Edited by ivan.spasov

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@zebrakiller:

I'll try to type up an overview and post it when I get the chance although what I'm looking for now is really for people who want to invest a little bit of time reading through it and spotting glaring problems with the game which would be hard to do from an overview. But I realize there aren't many people who are going to be willing to dedicate the time to do that for some stranger on a forum. :-)

 

@ivan.spasov:

Thanks for your comments. I will be sure to add those things on my next pass. I knew there were things very clear in my head that I forgot to write down. A lot of the reason I posted it here is so people can tell me what I am missing, so thanks. I'll answer your questions here as well as put them in the next document.

 

is it a 2D or a 3D game? What is your navigation tool inside the game world - are you using a first person camera, are you going for an over-head position with a point-and-click control scheme or is it something totally different ?

It is a 3D game. 3rd person RPG style. So WASD for movement. Mouse pointer for selecting and interacting with items.

 

How is the player going to transition from states?

If states means modes, then simply by pressing a key. Not sure of the default key bindings for this yet. maybe F1, F2, F3 or something like that.

 

How will the player be able to interact with intractable stuff?

Usually by clicking to select the item and choosing the interaction from the action bar.

 

Another thing I was really missing in your document was the basis of the atmosphere, look, feel and aesthetics of the entire world.

This is planned for another document. This document is how the systems will operate. The story and look and feel will be separate. It might not even be written by me if anyone else joins me and is better at that kind of thing. I'm more of a systems guy. But in short, the world has been in shambles for generations. No one has any hope that things will return to "how they used to be" or even has any memory of how they used to be, maybe they've heard stories. The objective is to be happy right now with what is available, build your own place in the world and your own friends and family. Hope comes from within. There will be small towns and nature mostly.

 

You should really add the platform that you are striving to develop for as well as your target audience.

The target platform is computers: Windows, Linux, and Macintosh. Client will be downloadable. Target audience is people who like games like Wurm and A Tale in the Desert but find they don't have enough action or want more clear goals. Also possibly people who like The Sims but wish it were more difficult and/or multi-player. Ultimately, the game is for somewhat serious gamers who like a challenging game and are willing to put time into it, which is not a huge audience I know, but a dedicated one if the game gets their attention.

 

Of course this game isn't going to be made any time soon. It's far too complex. But it's my dream game. Well, the first version of my dream game. I have even more stuff in mind that I cut out because it was already so complex. :-)

Edited by HighTreason

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