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arka80

Roguelike idea

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Hi all, I'm joking with some ideas about a kind of roguelike and I'm curious to know if, for you, these ideas deserve an implementation (-> can be fun) or maybe if there's something like that yet out there.

 

The gameplay genre is roguelike (classic top down), BUT the focus is not on the character, it is on the world. It's like the story of humanity: starting from the Stone Age with an almost obscured world map except your village (well, cave actually) area. You don't choose a class, you born as something: a hunter, maybe, or a harvester.

Gameplay consist in exploring the world, find resources and discover obelisks: each obelisk is a human milestone, or a technology, like the discovery of Fire, or how to work the stone. Some obelisk can require other to be discovered first: for example, to go in a dungeon (dark) you will have to have discovered Fire before, in order to have torches.

Characters die as part of gameplay. Each time you die, you born as something else, somewhere else (another cave/village in another world zone).

 

Going on, you explore and uncover the world map. Every Age has a number of technologies to be discovered and of resources to be gathered in order to pass to the next Age. Caves becomes villages and the cycle begins again with another born (but with totally different character classes).

 

You don't buy or find equipment and you don't level: discovering technologies bring better equipment and stats to your characters.

 

In every rpg must be a progression, but rather than leveling the PG, you level the setting.

 

The fun elements, up to me, are:

 

1) frequent change of character (each character must bring to a specified gameplay: for example a hunter will play as a quite standard roguelike character, fighting beasts for meat, while a harvester will explore the cave surroundings looking for herbs (the good one ok, the poisoning one... bye bye harvester).

2) see how a new discover changes the world (unlocking new classes, giving better equipment)

3) beat the game (reaching the last step of human progression... it is not important to set it now, but game will be actually beatable)

4) active exploration: you explore the world searching for something, every time.

5) ?

Edited by arka80

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I think it all falls down to execution, but the core idea is interesting. I like how "death" is treated in your high level concept (feels a bit like how rogue legacy recycles previous characters). Might be good to have a few winks to your previous characters too, such as say:

Your first character is dead. There is now a tombstone in his home village. If you visit it, you can steal a gear item he had in life (that awesome sword for example)

 

Would characters still have levels? I think you could come with a system that ties in time and experience: age. Since ultimately your character will die anyway, might as well introduce this long-forsaken mechanic where a character "ages".

Èach character could start their journey at around 13-18 years of age. Up until 30, they'd grow in all stats much more rapidly, beyond which physical abilities would lessen up until 60 or so. Beyond that point, the character would reach some kind of stagnant stage (or so).

 

Characters would get a chance to die from illness at any age, but the death% would increase drastically as you age (especially beyond age 40).

 

A number of things could make you age, such as combats, actual obelisks ("it took the man 3 years to master the flame!"), etc. It would be a very interesting resource that you, as a designer, could employ in various different ways.

 

Best of luck! I'm actually curious about how that might turn out...

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I thought to not consider levels for a specific reason: player frustration.

 

Since characters must die in order to let the game progress (you need various characters types to achieve all the requirements to pass Age),  I think it is frustrating for the player to grow a character and loose it in a systematic way (and begin again with a level 1 character)

 

The more, experience points, the holy grail of character progression, will still be there but will be a "world" resource: you gain them as humankind, not as character. You need a certain amount to pass Age, together with some other resources. I think at something like Social, Scientific, Artistic and Spiritual obeliks areas (and relative kind of characters).

 

So the real character is actually the world/setting... characters are more like troops in a rts.

 

But I like your suggestion of consider character age, thank you. I need to brain-crunch this thing but seems interesting, since the concept of "age" seems to be a key feature of this game idea.

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I see your point. Age does seem like it would still be fitting...

 

Perhaps an adventurer is naturally expected to retire if he lives beyond 40 years of age anyway? That might help you introduce / force other types of character gameplay and a good tie-in to the next life perhaps.

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Your game description kind of reminds me of Dwarf Fortress, [*1] which is a very popular game.

 

 It is all in how you design your game - I do not know how well this would work

 

You don't buy or find equipment and you don't level: discovering technologies bring better equipment and stats to your characters.

, however there is nothing wrong with trying new ideas to see what happens.

 

[*1] Adventure Mode

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Your game description kind of reminds me of Dwarf Fortress, [*1] which is a very popular game.

 

Mmm, don't think so. I played DF (but not in adventure mode) and it is a very different game. Adventure mode appears to me like a traditional roguelike (with all the deep of DF, by the way), it's "character-centric"; even if you can find and loot the corpse of your previous character there's not such a strong concept of "world-advancement".

 

But you're right, "there is nothing wrong with trying new ideas to see what happens". 

I think I'll give a try if tomorrow this will still sounds good to me smile.png .

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I think a prototype, even with very raw/low tech and feature set would be the best way to start with this. Toy with the concept a bit more, see what works / doesn't. 

If you can, have a dev journal on this, I'd really like to keep track of your progress!

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I think a prototype, even with very raw/low tech and feature set would be the best way to start with this. Toy with the concept a bit more, see what works / doesn't. 

If you can, have a dev journal on this, I'd really like to keep track of your progress!

 

this.

 

Journal will be the tool of choice to talk about this, but a thread in the forum is the better way to have quick feedback to start with.

Your idea regarding age is taking form, solving a design issue I had: rechargeable powers. Some characters can take advanced actions, powerful things that can incide in the world.

For example: after you discover the obelisk "social organization: tribe" you unlock the chieftain character, which can create new villages. But at what cost? I don't want to spend gained resources, since I want them as a collectable-only thing. So the idea: he can set a new village every x year of game-life. Similar mechanic will be suitable for other characters.

(New villages are a key feature, since characters can move in a limited range from the native village, and exploring the map requires new spawn spot to be created)

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So the idea: he can set a new village every x year of game-life.

 

Any idea on how you'll have time "advance"? Will be it flowing organically (each action comes with time moving forwards, or even realt-time moves forward), or related to player actions?

 

I don' know how far you want to reach into this, but it might be fun to advance your world so far that you can time travel back to a previous era with a character (but may be entirely beyond the scope of what you're trying to achieve).

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So the idea: he can set a new village every x year of game-life.

 

Any idea on how you'll have time "advance"? Will be it flowing organically (each action comes with time moving forwards, or even realt-time moves forward), or related to player actions.

 

I should be working, but actually I'm thinking at this aspect at the moment ph34r.png

What I want to discourage is the left-right-left-right trick to let turns (time) pass. So probabily large scale time advancements (years) will take place according to something else, like the discover of an obelisk (3 years to master the fire, as you suggested before). But it is something I have to think of. Since the character life is a pretty clear abstraction of many human experiences I feel I have room for inventing.

 


I don' know how far you want to reach into this, but it might be fun to advance your world so far that you can time travel back to a previous era with a character (but may be entirely beyond the scope of what you're trying to achieve).

 

aha, time travel! THIS is the ultimate-complicate idea for a time-age-based game biggrin.png . Definitely something to write down and remember! What if at the end of the game, once reached the top, you need to discover the way to come back and start again? ahah, what a great image for the "cycle of life"! Funny tongue.png

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