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Ideas to make racing through a futuristic city interesting?

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Hello,

 

I've been working on a game for some time. In short, it is a "sci-fi airplane racing game", set in the far-future, but I'm trying to make the game at least slightly realistic.

 

It's a huge, oversized project, that I'm completely crazy to start on my own. My current goal is to see if I can at least create a very rough version of it on my own, and maybe team up if that turns out good. It's more a hobby than anything else.

 

Many things are already in place, but I'm short on ideas for track design, and I'm asking myself: "What are interesting things to race through that actually make sense from a story point of view". It is set in a rather large coastal city that hosts a racing event (anually or something?).

 

How I see the track before me:

  • Players start out in some kind of stadium that is open on two ends (not shure how that's called) that is located on a cliff, between to higher areas.
  • They then turn and follow the coastline, the "racing area" is limited by floating "beacons".
  • They follow this coastline towards the estuary of a large river that flows through the city,.
  • The players then follow the river into the city, with spectators lining the river banks.

 

Aaand I'm out of ideas. What would be interesting features of this city that racers can fly through that would make sense? I was thinking about making the river go underground or something, so they fly through a tunnel, but then I'm not shure how to make them exit again.

 

I'm posting this here in the hope that you might have some cool ideas for this track or maybe the game in general. I'll post some screenshots later (don't expect too much, it's mostly empty terrain).

 

Here's the starting area: Schermafbeelding%202014-08-11%20om%2020.

 

And the famous (empty) coastline. Maybe I'll add some buildings at the top of the cliffs, and maybe some beaches: coastline.jpg

 

Another shot of the coastline, a small peninsula that you can fly through. This thing needs a bridge.

Schermafdruk%202014-08-11%2020.58.27.png

Edited by Werner291

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The way I see it since it is planes that are being raced, there are three major obstacle types that you can make. The first is altitude-related obstacles. Ones that force the player to drastically alter their altitude to avoid it. The second is directional obstacles. These will force the player to move left, right, slightly up, slightly down, or any combination of the four. The third is rotation-related obstacles. Rotation-related obstacles force the player to rotate their plane. I would focus less on the scenery of the level and more on the actual design of it to make it fun and interesting. I would start off working with these three principal obstacle types and designing the track, but along the way come up with some unique obstacles to implement to help make your game stand out from the rest of plane racing games. Not that plane racing games really has a huge market, but I digress. Also in regard to this quote from your question, 'What are interesting things to race through that actually make sense from a story point of view'. As predominant as story has become in games over the past few years, gameplay will always be more important. This is coming from someone who both writes and designs for games. Design the gameplay, then mold the story around it in a coherent way that it seems natural and planned from the start.

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