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About Purgatorio

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  1. Making an Ability both a Curse & a Blessing?

    There's only 1 status/condition, let's call it "sickness" and it goes from "mild" to "sever" with maybe 3-4 levels of severity. There is a single medicine you can take to reduce your Sickness level by 1, or maybe 1 half. Contact with certain entities raises your level. My goal is to make each level provide 2 sides of a coin -- to encourage the player to utilize it, but not to depend on it (the abilities, that is).
  2. Making an Ability both a Curse & a Blessing?

    Here are the positive benefits I've considered so far, in order of lesser to greatest: - Become neutral to certain enemies - Short-circuit electronics - Pass through walls Negative effects so far - Cannot operate electronics - Attract certain enemies - Takes damage (when passing through walls) - Messing with the GUI I don't know how possible it will be to affect their screen because the more I delve into possible effects, we seem to be rather limited. In Amnesia: the Dark Descent, for example, when the player's sanity is waning, their vision becomes blurred. I'm not sure if that's even something our technology/processor will let us do, unfortunately. It just seems like one of the few things we can do, really. I'd love to make them hallucinate though.
  3. MMO Postmortem Project - Player Impressions

    I played a good, solid 10 minutes of the WoW trial and thought the graphics were weak and the interface too painful to look at. I also found myself confused with the quests I was given and had difficult navigating the map. I've played Guild Wars for 4-1/2 years and I thought its best feature was the combination of excellent support/patching, along with good graphics and gameplay -- not to mention it was free. The only thing I disliked was the (probably unintentional) bias towards grinders/speed clears; the game became less about enginuity and more about playing the same build of skills that everyone else has played. I played FFXI for maybe a year and found it to be the most addictive thing I've ever done. I loved the graphics, classes and so much else about it. The only 2 things I didn't like: Subscription fee and the fact that leveling up was rarely a solo act, and that it felt like you needed to level up before actually enjoying any of the primary story lines and missions. Finding a party was always problematic, and therefor leveing was problematic. I absolutely loved the open feel of its world, being able to travel on foot, boat or by chocobo.
  4. I've been contemplating an ability mechanic I want to try out, but I can't really figure out how it would balance itself out. Essentially it's a condition that provides the player with a 'progress/status' bar, indicating the severity of the condition. What I wanted to do, was to provide benefits at higher levels but balance them with negative effects. So while at the beginning, the effects are relatively benign and non damaging, the player can worsen/improve the condition to raise their level, and thus gain alternate powers and negative benefits. There is no combat in the game, and health isn't really a HUGE deal (think Amnesia: the Dark Descent). The condition at various stages would basically serve as an alternate means of solving some puzzles, allowing for a secondary solution that can be utilized or outright dismissed according to the player's playstyle. I've got a few different benefits to try, but because health isn't an issue and there is no combat, what could some of the negative aspects be? Messing with their UI/GUI? At the highest stage of the condition, I've speculated that the player will actually be able to go through certain walls at the cost of health (I know I said health isn't a big issue, but it still exists) but I want there to be some other negative aspect to accompany it since if they are able to figure it out and mitigate the damage taken by going through walls with stock-piled health items, I don't want it to be something that can be abused -- although maybe there is still a way to go around this second negative aspect? The condition itself sort of serves as a puzzle in a way, which is why I don't want it to be picked up and then just abused -- it has to be carefully manipulated. And there is a way to lower the condition, and for it to be raised so they can manipulate the levels if they need to. I just haven't figured out how many stages/levels there should be. Any thoughts/suggestions? Did I just say all of this and not make a lick of sense?
  5. What Would You Need for a Solar System Simulation?

    Things wouldn't need to necessarily occur in real-time. There could be a brief cinematic to show the effects and when it ends, you're left with the results of the event. Not as awesome, of course, but again -- this didn't need to be an exact, real-time replica. Just simulate likely outcomes and processes. And by simulate I mean produce -- nothing happens without the player's direct or indirect involvement. Everything that's been said on this topic has been way over my head.
  6. I can certainly agree that my approach to writing a game design out vs. writing a short-story or novel are completely different, but that mostly rests in how I'll present the material -- for a novel I'll be, well, writing a novel but when I approach a game, I break it down into its core elements and make lots of lists; I'm often tempted to write about the game as if it were a story which is a habit I'm still trying to curb. As far as [b]content[/b] goes, no I don't think my approaches differ too strongly; I try not to 'target' an audience and simply attempt to produce an experience that I want to share with others, one that I think will touch a variety of viewers. I think that can work for games and normal fiction. Also, people tend to work on what interests them -- so just because you don't see anyone else trying to construct a romantic simulation, doesn't necessarily mean that others couldn't jive with that type of game. I can only work on projects that interest me or else I become bored quite easily. It also depends on how you approach a game-type. Rather than putting gender labels on games, find a way to make them appeal to a wider audience. I think Fable's inclusion of the whole sexual reproduction/family system gave some players a chance to participate in a certain type of gameplay that they wouldn't have, were it standalone -- it presented the aspect in an RPG, fantasy setting that seems to appeal to a wide audience. With that said, I don't see why we can't create games that compromise and present the player with uncommon activities that are presented in a familiar way. I think for the most part, games are designed to satisfy a target audience and by that very process, they're obviously going to exclude some audiences. I can see creating games to fill a vacant niche market if you're really focused on creating something marketable, or trying to make something that can satsify a niche that has gone unattended. I hear a lot about "hardcore" and "casual" gamers now a days and that tends to break games into either FPS or family-friendly pickup games; there are of course other games that try to appeal to players who love a game with stories, or thought-provoking gameplay, but these games (at least in my opinion) almost supercede the hardcore/casual label since you could easily find people in either category who are more interested in experiencing a story as opposed to simple fire-fights or party games. I think if you, or anyone, has a really interesting idea -- even if there doesn't seem like there would be an obvious market for it -- to just follow through with it and see what happens. People will buy almost anything and it's hard to accept that something can't have a target audience; they're out there, you just have to lure them out with something new.
  7. What Would You Need for a Solar System Simulation?

    [quote name='shadowisadog' timestamp='1313854012' post='4851618'] Well the more you simplify things down, the further away you go from a "Solar System Simulation" which is the topic of your thread. If you really want to do it for the experience, why don't you simply try it? Even if you fail you are likely to learn a good bit in the process and you should gain a better understanding of the iPad processing limitations. [/quote] I'm not looking to program anything personally. And a simulation doesn't necessitate an exact replica, at least that wasn't my ultimate goal; I didn't actually think the examples I gave would be this intensive of a program. I see explosions that affect objects in games all of the time, I was merely wondering if you could break down the same elements and principals into a simplistic idea of planets and stars, rather than guns, ammo, bombs, buildings, etc. Like a proof of concept for technology/programming. The general consensus seems to be that this isn't practical, at least as it has been described. The concept was to present an empty amount of space with raw resource/material that could be used to create other entities. I'd probably just be typing at myself at this point to give further explanation. Perhaps I can revisit this at a later time. Thanks.
  8. What Would You Need for a Solar System Simulation?

    Frob @ Would it be possible to make the gaseous forms follow liquid physics but just present them, visually, as having more of a particle/dust effect or appearance? As opposed to dealing with that number of individual particles? I wouldn't actually want each particle to interact with each other, but rather different types of particles. So if the gaseous cloud is made of red particles, and I compress a chunk of them -- they become a larger, solid blue particle. Each type of particle would be assigned a set of characteristics, ideally. And a gaseous form would be its own entity that can be combined with other gaseous forms, or divided into chunks, but it wouldn't have to go so far as separating individual particles, of which as you've said, could and would be many. ex. Red particles can be swirled, compacted and moved with the touch of your finger (so you're moving the entire cloud of gas as if it were a liquid) Blue particles would attract red particles when in a certain proximity and can keep them in orbit or be enlarged by 'rolling' it through more Red particles Yellow particles cause all other particles to experience a reverse in their properties while in proximity, over a slow period of time ( Blue particles would repel Red particles, etc). It's quite possible that I'm simply trying to explain the same thing you've already told me, and if that's the case I apologize. What you've said makes sense though. I just thought this sort of thing would be a next experience, but if it's too impossible for the mobile devices I'd likely just keep it in my portfolio as a concept.
  9. What Would You Need for a Solar System Simulation?

    [quote name='shadowisadog' timestamp='1313809089' post='4851464'] [quote name='Purgatorio' timestamp='1313797656' post='4851432'] [font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"][size="2"]You'll have to forgive me if I say something that doesn't make sense (I'm not a programmer), how huge of a programming undertaking might this be? I gather that this will involve algorithms (that I am equally unfamiliar with), but what level of expertise/knowledge would a user need to do a mock up in Unity?[/size][/font] [font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"] [/font] [font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"][size="2"]I should say just to avoid any issues: I'm attempting to research the graphical/programming requirements of creating such a program, so when/if I am given an opportunity to create it, I know what to look and ask for.[/size][/font] [/quote] I can tell you that the program you are describing seems unrealistic from a number of perspectives. The computational requirements sound immense for the scope you are describing. the iPad/iPhone does not have near the processing power for "forming stars, making stars/suns go supernova, etc)" especially in real time. You could make a very scaled back, precomputed and low geometry (relatively) version of a galaxy with enough trickery but it wouldn't be anywhere near what you are describing. I will provide the advice that if you are potentially going to receive an offer to do this for money, that you not do it. If you are not a programmer and you do not know the scope of the project, you are simply not in a position to be able to reliably create it (or even know what you are getting yourself into). [/quote] It's possible that I made it sound more complicated than I intend for it to be. Here's what I was going for, with a bit more depth: The first mode would provide a 'canvas' of space and gaseous forms/debris. The user would use gestures to compact, swirl, move and manipulate the gas to form solid entities that could be further manipulated to create stars, planets, nebulas, etc. This isn't looking to present an exact model, but there would be events that could occur during use (supernovae) that would destroy and change what they've created, or in certain events, open access to new creations (molecular clouds). Ex. A system of planets and stars has been created, but due to the proximity of certain celestial entities, a supernova has begun; as it runs its course and completes, the effects of a supernova would occur: the colors and forms would expand, explode -- what have you. So it's less about being an exact replica of the myriad processes, and more a basic yet visually appealing version of what goes on in space. At the moment I can't think of a game to compare it to, but hopefully I've explained it a bit more accurately. So what you mentioned, "a very scaled back, precomputed..." version sounds like what I am going for. I was just interested in finding out what engine would be best in handling and replicating effects for the particles, gas, etc. for the target console (iPad/iPhone). It's also possible that even a scaled down version like this still couldn't function on the newest generation of ipads, but essentially it would be intended for anything with touch/motion capability (PS3, Kinect, etc). I appreciate your candor, however; I definitely was not looking to explore the mathematical computations of our universe, but was hoping that I could present something that offered the same awe and beauty of the ever-changing cosmos without bogging the user down with the unknown science of it.
  10. What Would You Need for a Solar System Simulation?

    [font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"][size="2"]You'll have to forgive me if I say something that doesn't make sense (I'm not a programmer), how huge of a programming undertaking might this be? I gather that this will involve algorithms (that I am equally unfamiliar with), but what level of expertise/knowledge would a user need to do a mock up in Unity?[/size][/font] [font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"] [/font] [font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"][size="2"]I should say just to avoid any issues: I'm attempting to research the graphical/programming requirements of creating such a program, so when/if I am given an opportunity to create it, I know what to look and ask for.[/size][/font]
  11. I am interested in creating something that is very similar to a solar system simulation -- the creation, movement and effects of what is present in the simulation is important. Ex. If a Supernova occurred and there were surrounding planets and stars, the engine/graphics/etc would need to know how and what it is supposed to do. Further, a part of this 'simulation' is the ability to create a system or galaxy, and the engine/graphics/physics/etc. would need to be able to allow for the logical processes, effects and other etcetera that occur (forming stars, making stars/suns go supernova, etc). So with that said, this would be something to be used on the iPad and iPhone, using gestures similar to what a mousepad would offer + some (pinching, pulling, flicking, etc.). - What engine(s) would be best for creating this program - What languages would be best for creating this program - What software would be best for generating the effects/graphics (lights, particles, gaseous forms) And is there anything else I would need to know or consider in the pursuit of this program? Because I am asking these questions, it's possible that what I've mentioned is not feasible for the console I mentioned; if that's the case, please let me know. Thanks.
  12. Non-humanoid Protagonist

    Here's an example of a story revolving around an inanimate (sort of) object: [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubber_(2010_film"]http://en.wikipedia....bber_(2010_film[/url]) As far as what I think, I believe that it is possible to have a non-humanoid act as a protagonist -- or even antagonist. The writer simply has to present the object/character in such a way that the player will want to invest their time into the story and gameplay. Most games have an endgame. Player starts here --> ends here. Even if it was a pixel entering a fractal, to save other pixels, I get a sense of adventure and heroism. Who is this tiny pixel, and why does he think he can save the other pixels? Other things like art and gameplay can really help to sell the unusual protagonist as well. Not quite a character, but the game "Flower" has you controlling a single flower petal (inside of a plant's dream) and you guide it around beautiful landscapes, rousing other plants to bloom and collecting other flora to accompany your single petal. Obviously the petal isn't a protagonist in any sense, but it's what the player controls and they have to invest themselves in the notion that they are going to experience something unique through controlling this object. I haven't played the game myself, however I don't think it follows a single plot -- it's more like an experience. But by that same company is a game called "Journey." It has a subtle focus, but the character is completely anonymous -- who knows what lurks behind the shadow of its hood? I think anonymity could be put into the non-humanoid category because for all you know, you could be playing as a Dog/Broom wearing a cloak, manipulated by forces unseen; but it's the combination of these things that creates the character and protagonist, and this scenario could possibly work out incredibly well given a good enough explanation. I think once you identify the possibe motives of this 'object', it sort of inherently acquires traits we usually reserve for sentient things. Heck, you could probably turn the number "1" into a protagonist, sent on a journey to acquire the greatness of a triple digit and it must encounter other numbers to learn the ways of yadda, yadda, yadda.
  13. How do you write a GDD?

    [quote name='Katie' timestamp='1313242668' post='4848628'] Why don't you write games for something you DO understand? Design some card games or board games. That way you're not writing in such a rarefied space. [/quote] Because I'm not interested in other types of games. And I'm already working on 1 board game as it is. I have several ideas for games and that's what I'm pursuing. I understand that constructing other types of games is or can be sufficient for resume material, however I'd prefer to get experience and practice in creating gameplay mechanics and further understanding the importance of a video game's aesthetics in combination with concept, gameplay and content. And yes, you can certainly do that with board games as well. I'd just prefer to utilize the ideas I do already have, rather than push them to the wayside. I'm also aware that GDDs are constantly changing. My question was focusing on the worthiness of a GDD that had no programming content, but I ended up answering my own question after some further thinking. These documents are, for the time being, made only for myself and potential employers so I'd be the only one putting anything into them. I was basically under the impression that a design document without any programming information would seem worthless or confusing, but I can lay the ground work for that easily enough so that if I were to share it with a programmer, they would have enough to go on.
  14. How do you write a GDD?

    [quote]I feel that it would be possible to write a GDD, but you must understand your limitations and also stretch them to the limits. You may not be able to program, but if you have played enough games you should have some sort of idea how to break your idea down into more definitive parts that a programmer would better be able to tackle. Make it as clear and concise as possible while not losing your overall view, and also leave some room for flexibility and consultation/amendment. [/quote] Thanks for the reply. That's a very simple, logical approach. And yes, I could certainly break down the mechanics for anyone else to grasp. Part of my inquery was also aimed at the typical lengthiness of a GDD, and whether or not a programmer or employer would be sifting through 50 blank pages to read the 3 that actually have something written on them. But what you said is useful in that I can do my best to populate as much of the GDD as I can by myself. As long as my work is there and coherent, I think that can get the point across.
  15. RPG: Skills

    I would recommend that you take a look at [url="http://www.guildwars2.com/en/the-game/combat/part-one/"]http://www.guildwars2.com/en/the-game/combat/part-one/[/url] and browse some of their other blog articles. Arena Net has come up with some fresh ways to utilize skills in their game, and it's always helpful to see how others are trying to break the mold as you yourself might be attempting. Just an example from their system: Players can equip a combination of 2 weapons, and their first five skills are determined by the weapons they wield. The Main-Hand covers the first 3, and the Off-Hand, the last 2. There are then 5 utility skills that can be changed outside of combat. Most professions have the ability to "swap" between weaponsets during combat, effectively granting them 2 different skill sets. Skills in this sense allow the player to adapt to situations almost instantly, making combat intuitive and strategic rather than something where they can google the best builds and min-max their characters for efficiency. Player skill plays a tremendous part in their system. I don't know if any of that will be up your alley, but I thought to mention it just in case.