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Old 10th-September-2017, 08:44 AM   #1
Cognisant
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Default Help me design a game

Okay it's 2D, in space, same high-rez bitmap art style as "FTL" (see spoiler for an example of what "FTL" looks like), smaller ships (fighters and such) can land inside larger ships and on any ship that has more than just a cockpit the player can have their character walk around inside the ship and shoot/interact with things.

Spoiler:

I'm imagining something more like "Freelancer" crossed with "Rimworld" than anything in the same league as "Star Citizen" or "Elite: Dangerous", a space game that's more focused on fun than realism and the simple graphics/gameplay make it easy to create content for; maybe a persistent online sandbox, maybe just local single player, depends how difficult the former is to set up.

See that's where I'm stuck, there could be evil aliens to shoot down and derelict ships/stations to explore but what are the players fighting and exploring for?

To get money for a bigger/better ship? Okay but then what?
Build a space station? Then what?
I'm not a fan of self defeating objectives, like making money to buy a better ship with which to make more money and buy a better ship, so on and so forth until the player runs out of better ships to acquire.
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Old 10th-September-2017, 09:04 AM   #2
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Default Re: Help me design a game

Well you can have several factions/aliens/space pirates to fight each other while your MC is picking out the destroyed bases and survivors. You can scale the enemies as your MC progresses. They can start out as fighting scout ships to gunships and finally battleships.

Lore-wise you can argue that your MC is an insignificant commoner that gets more and more in/famous as time goes by.
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Old 10th-September-2017, 11:26 AM   #3
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Default Re: Help me design a game

That's pretty much how "Freelancer" worked, you were free to roam around and earn money in each area until you've bought the best ship and all the best weapons available, then you go do the next few story missions to progress to the next area. The game was really all about its story, the missions were okay and you could spend some time with spreadsheets figuring out optimal trade routes if that's your kinda thing but as a single player game there was nothing to keep me playing once the story ended.
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Old 10th-September-2017, 09:08 PM   #4
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Default Re: Help me design a game

Kinda reminds me of Vega Strike. I liked that game a lot.
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Old 10th-September-2017, 11:41 PM   #5
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Default Re: Help me design a game

The screen is a problem, from a top down view the player's ship and enemy ships have to be very small or the player won't be able to see them until they're practically onbtop of each other. Having the player's ship at the bottom of the screen and the view rotating with the orientation of the player's ship helps but it doesn't solve the problem.
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Old 11th-September-2017, 12:38 AM   #6
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Default Re: Help me design a game

All games are finite. Multiplayer enhances it. You need multiplayer.
I don't know much about this kind of games.
I youtubed freelancer and its cinematics reminded me of the loungest journey. Which is a game I enjoyed playing very much because of its weird futuristic bohemian ambience. I beat it twice just because of that.
But if u want to focus on multiplayer fun, well, Call of duty gives players certain special awards for, an example, winning 125 matches in 4 days.
I hadn't seen my brother so obsessed in a while.
U know why? Because now he can troll people with a new gun which he claims to be overpowered and concieved for trolling purposes. U need to give players reasons to seek for revenge.
So, u need to put a lot of things so people can use them and combine and make better versions of them. U say they are balanced. U put some statistics which confirm it but then the rpg happens. Or the dark knight halberd. U need them to find where the game is broken so they feel cool about knowing where to cheat.

Bloodborne gives u as an almost side story the chalice dungeons where difficulty gets harder every time and u find new and old harder versions of bosses.
In animal crossing u farm stuff man.
U could be mysterious about things that are not that impressive at the end.
Put fake symbolic stuff so people try to understand what it all means. Try to create a culture. So they feel like anthropologists. Symbolism is key too.

Dark souls keeps you engaged because of the ambience and story (for me its 70% of the game), but also because you can always be better and have cooler weapons and make thousands of varieties of dresses and be a magician or pyro or a clown. Pokemon did the same.
The witcher makes me feel free and away from this rotten world.

There is still people playing no man sky because they really know they will find that one special promised land. Haha.

So there are two ways. U can beat your back to death and create thousand of different things so the player is always experimenting.
Or you could do an amazing beautiful looking game (u have tons of good examples of this recently, can't recall names) or if u wanna go old school damn donkey Kong 2 with a baddass soundtrack so it will stay forever in the minds of players. Catchy stuff. That gets stuck in people brains.

I think visuals and sound are key. Sorry for the scattered shit, I'm on the phone watching Dexter. Got a bit boring.
I haven't said anything new tho.
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Old 11th-September-2017, 10:36 AM   #7
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Default Re: Help me design a game


Well that's very close to what I had in mind.
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Old 11th-September-2017, 05:46 PM   #8
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Default Re: Help me design a game

The thing about games is that you have to be in the mood to play them. If you overanalyze them like your normal, rational self does, you stop enjoying them because they are pointless time wasters. Some of the best games have stories. It's a rewarding, fulling experience for certain gamers. But our perceptive side hates that. We want the story to go on and on and yet be fulfilling. We need something new every time. That said, I think it's important to find a good story rather than looking for a mediocre story. You want something that you enjoyed once and therefore don't mind playing over and over again. Otherwise, I"d recommend RTS. It excites your strategic side and lets you keep redoing it over and over again. Don't look for an "ultimate end" in games. You won't find one, and you wouldn't be happy if you did anyways.

If you take the story-based approach:
- The story should have flexibility in user choices, but still have a generally forced path overall. This avoids two issues: Your mind feeling the anxiety of wanting to try out every path (assuming you get anxious, which I guess some people do ??), diluting the story into being pointless because you can avoid parts XYZ. For a space game, this could be like running-the-gauntlet against some alien infiltrators on the ship, which the player has done all kinds of work to prepare for, but only delayed the inevitable. Perhaps even delaying it to be better prepared might make the event worse! (more enemies)
- The story provides the "ultimate end" but it's really just a coming to fruition of something presented earlier. For a space game, this may mean the player character dreams of returning to their home planet, but they must first fulfill the wishes of some cruel field marshal in their space military. Along the way, dreams of home are analyzed and even compared to the aliens, bringing up questions of ethics and justification as well as emotional ties. Perhaps you are forced to choose between allying with aliens - which seems enticingly convenient for a mission, otherwise they may make it worse - or obeying your superior, both of which lead to betrayal and distance you from your goal. You have, as a player, only a slim but possible margin of avoiding the dilemma, but so small most people don't see it coming and have to follow the main story.

If you do RTS, your work is cut out for you. New terrain, new maps, and lots of RTS references. Pick the aspects you like. RTS can happen inside ships. It's like it has to be ship-v-ship battles.
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Old 11th-September-2017, 10:28 PM   #9
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Default Re: Help me design a game

I'd imagine mitigating difficulty for a game would be rather difficult without someone to bounce ideas off of.
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Old 12th-September-2017, 01:16 AM   #10
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Default Re: Help me design a game

Also think about designing an inifinte random level for players who passed the game, or maybe even a certain level of character customization

Possibly out of bounds now, but that kind of stuff (also multuplayer as tmb said) makes a shitty game an awesome game.

History? Maybe.
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