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AI in story concept, and perhaps a bit of an update

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'Ello everybody, it's good to be back in the forum-post saddle... I've of course been continually preening and buffing out the lore of my game world- it is going according to plan for the most part.

 

I've been hard at work at establishing a 'global state of affairs' for the player to become immersed in. An element of the story telling involves a disjunction between the immediate experience of your characters and the looming political subplot. Linking the two of course will be the philosophical content of the game- which will gradually wind around itself Ouroborically until at last the game comes 'full circle' and thrusts its message in the player's face painfully. Disparate events reform as a singularity- and this in itself is a philosophical theme. 

 

But back to the topic at hand. I've been working a bit more on the nature of the villain's scheme for the purpose of getting some more visceral impact out of it. 

 

My plan is to have an AI in the game, call it CR0-9. This is an AI that manages the governmental affairs of one of the three central continents in my game as well as the confidential materials that an underground scientific community utilizes to input data and findings. Thus- the AI is largely responsible for regulating a lot of important material throughout the world. I plan on introducing this AI through cut-scenes involving governmental elite for the third central continent- rather comedic ones. 

 

So my idea, as indicated in the topic title, is to have this AI really be  the main villain who is directly hooked up to the CPU. 

 

This does a few things for the plot:

 

1.) The villain has a reason for knowing much, and in advance.

2.) He can keep tabs both on the scientific organization, and the relatively technologically advanced 'stable' continent.

3.) When he needs to exact his plan, he can practically force both forces to do his bidding. 

4.) CR0-9 is a re-iteration of the villain's real name, Cronine. 

 

The 'dramatic irony' at work is that this villain professes to be more human than anybody else despite his thoroughly 'inhuman' body. Another component of the irony is that his brother is mobile- and he represents the antagonist that is 'in sight' for most of the game. So it all ultimately spills together by the end. 

 

_______

 

Feedback, comments, anything is fine to hear from you all. Is it generic ultimately? I really must lend heavy thanks to all the people here who heard me out beforehand because my story is nearing the point where the 'sequence of events' can start to be lain out. I'm pretty happy with all of the material I have so far.

Edited by Stumpmaestro

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I'm not sure if I am lost because you didn't really explain enough to us, or if I'm lost because I missed something... Is there a previous thread you made with important information we need to know to understand this? If so could you please link it here

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Well, the previous thread contains dated information as is, but this post is indeed hanging on the coattails of previous threads. Just for the purpose of brevity, I will briefly discuss what I have going on:

 

I'm designing the story for a JRPG-esque game, art-style ideally reminiscent of Metal Gear Solid with perhaps a bit of something else. The plot revolves around a political subplot that 'macrocosmically' reflects themes in the 'microcosm' of the protagonist party. These in turn resolve in a philosophical plot that 'brings it all together'. I have quite a few ideas percolating for the various plots and subplots. You get a few central philosophical themes, a metaphysical one, and so forth.

 

The major themes of the game are war/peace, suffering, agency and what one ought to do.

 

I'm still working out certain characters and plot events, but I have a good idea of where the overall trajectory is tending. 

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Basic thoughts:
Reminds me a little bit of FATE, from Chrono Cross. But not overly so, and not in a bad way.

1.) The villain has a reason for knowing much, and in advance.

Good. I like seemingly-omnipotent (or, in this case, omniscient) villains, but I like there to be a reasonable explanation for why/how they are, even if it's just a subtle background explanation that can be missed.

4.) CR0-9 is a re-iteration of the villain's real name, Cronine.

That can either be fine, or really cheesy, depending on how you handle it. 
 

The 'dramatic irony' at work is that this villain professes to be more human than anybody else

This is often played for laughs, and has been done quite a bit.
Either the AI/robot/created-entity claims to *not* be human, but is really extremely human (e.g. Bender from Futurama), or it claims to be above humans but secretly envies them, or they claim to be extremely human but really "don't understand what humanity is about".

If you want it to be dramatic rather than comedic, you'll have to do so carefully.

Another component of the irony is that his brother is mobile

How does an AI have a "brother"? Is the brother subservient? How/why?

and [his brother] represents the antagonist that is 'in sight' for most of the game.

Another risky thing that can be done very badly or very well.
Swapping villains in the final act can be cliched and anti-climatic. If ye-ol' switcheroo occurs, it should occur before the final act, so players have time to accept the new big-bad, and so you have time to address why the big-bad even needs to be taken out, and to develop the relationship between the protagonist and the new antagonist. This is necessary even if the new antagonist was already present throughout the game, and legitimately pulling the strings the whole time; IMO, players still need time to adjust to the character being in a new role.

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Thanks for the in-depth response. 

 

 

 


Another risky thing that can be done very badly or very well.
Swapping villains in the final act can be cliched and anti-climatic. If ye-ol' switcheroo occurs, it should occur before the final act, so players have time to accept the new big-bad, and so you have time to address why the big-bad even needs to be taken out, and to develop the relationship between the protagonist and the new antagonist. This is necessary even if the new antagonist was already present throughout the game, and legitimately pulling the strings the whole time; IMO, players still need time to adjust to the character being in a new role

 

With regards to this, I plan on introducing this AI villain much earlier- only that you don't know he is who he is. You encounter him at first as the AI- a screen no less. It isn't until a very late point that you realize that he is another entity entirely, who exists behind the AI.

 

Symbolically, the brother you pursue or encounter mostly throughout the game has one red eye in it's right socket. Now, throughout the game you assume the AI is its own existence- a villain perhaps related to the red-eyed cyborg, but not in blood. You think, perhaps they are working together.

 

It's after you've had a lot clarified that you encounter the main villain holed up by the CPU of the AI- a single eye gleaming from within the circuitry of the machine. It will be basically a large coffin-like structure- and he will possess but one red eye in his left socket, as opposed to his brother's right eyed one. Then you're hit with the realization. All along- this computer screen, this machine, has been a man- very old mind you- pulling the strings. 

 

 

 


How does an AI have a "brother"? Is the brother subservient? How/why?

 

The brother is subservient in a sense. I take the concept from the Jungian concept of the complementarity of opposites. One brother is the 'extravert' who goes out and DOES, while the other is stationary and limited in place- the 'introvert'. Together they compose a single being, in a symbolic sense. They are aspects of the same 'plan'. 

 

 

 


This is often played for laughs, and has been done quite a bit.
Either the AI/robot/created-entity claims to *not* be human, but is really extremely human (e.g. Bender from Futurama), or it claims to be above humans but secretly envies them, or they claim to be extremely human but really "don't understand what humanity is about".

If you want it to be dramatic rather than comedic, you'll have to do so carefully.

 

The AI in question is a human originally who has uplinked himself to a power source that sustains his existence. He is thus too old to be human anymore, but he lives for them- he wants to sacrifice any chance at reprieve for the purpose of bringing humanity to a higher level of evolution, development. I probably should have clarified this. He is somebody who has seen a hellish possibility, and will deprive himself to guide us onward.

 

 

 


That can either be fine, or really cheesy, depending on how you handle it. 

 

It is cheesy actually. I'll have to play with it more. It was more that the player becomes accustomed to one name, only to have his real name spoken rather casually. The link is thereby forged.

 

 

 


Good. I like seemingly-omnipotent (or, in this case, omniscient) villains, but I like there to be a reasonable explanation for why/how they are, even if it's just a subtle background explanation that can be missed.

 

Compound this with one of the philosophical themes of the game. He knows not only the real 'goings ons' of the world, but also the philosophical tendency of these elements. How they all ultimately speak to the history of ideas.

Edited by Stumpmaestro

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