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Feedback on Storyline System for Mow Flow: Lawn & Order

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Hello guys, I'm the Project Lead on Mow Flow: Lawn & Order being developed by Star Chart Studios. It's just a name for now, we haven't formed an actual company or anything. But the logo's cool! 

 

Early non-official trailer

 

We're working on a game called Mow Flow: Lawn & Order. Satire, parody, and humor is abundant. But there's also a branching storyline, and I'm having trouble adopting a way of thinking that might better incorporate satirical humor, as well as lead the player along. The idea so far is that the player will start off from "Level 1", then they'll be able to choose from "Level 2A", "Level 2B" and such, the letters signify what branch the player opts for. Players will have the option to travel between house lanes they've unlocked in order to unlock new ones and go back to earlier areas and unlock an early house lane even though they're in the late game.

 

If we were to introduce story elements into the game at a later stage, what are your (someone from the development team says hi to everyone) thoughts on that process? How should we deal with information that the player may not have taken part in earlier, but may see again? Is it immersion breaking? Let's put up an example.

 

Casey is past the House Lane 4A in the game (all areas are referred to as house lanes from now on and will be shortened down to HL#X), zhe has the option to travel to either Japan or Brazil. At this point in the game, the main character (Meep) and the major sidekick (Miyoda) have built up a relationship of some sort. At the very least, it would be more interesting to have unplucked some of the secrets hidden beneath the surface of both characters at this point. But assuming they've become somewhat familiar, Meep may have told Miyoda about zheir ability to perform photosynthesis via the sun. It's news to the player as well at the point of reveal. Then, at an earlier stage in the game, the player had opted to go down a certain branch and ignored unlocking certain levels. But at one point they go back, and they unlock a level they didn't do earlier in the game. Perhaps Miyoda questions Meep's unwillingness to eat (he's already full of sun energy) as if she didn't know about the photosynthesis? This is the conondrum on my mind, if you have any feedback it would be greatly appreciated.

 

Best regards,

Dan Isaksson

Edited by Proximately

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If there's one permanent sidekick, you could make the dialogue with that sidekick dependent on number of levels cleared, rather than branch.  And the branches instead could each develop a relationship with one or two local people who are asking for help and/or antagonists.  So you'd lay one storytelling system over top of the other, and might sometimes have a double scene before a level.

 

Also you should totally have directional mowed lawn and customers who want artsy patterns mowed into their lawns.  And maybe more than one tree stump graphic (or a rock) for variety.

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