Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Video Game Ideas By M. A. Packer


            The premise of this game goes as follows: you play as Ted McBride, a college student who is at his best friend’s apartment to borrow his shower after a game of racket ball.  Ted tells his friend all about how he is finally going to ask out a girl he really likes.  His friend tells him that will be quite difficult.  When Ted asks why his friend tells him that he also likes this girl and likewise intends to ask her out that very day.  The friend then departs, stealing Ted’s clothes and cell phone.  Now Ted must streak across town back to his own apartment, get dressed and meet the girl at the rendezvous point before his ex-friend beats him to it.  Depending on how well the player does, there will be different outcomes, whether they be his friend beating him to the punch and he meets a nicer girl, the girl rejects both of them, the girl wants to date both of them, etc. etc.  These particulars could be fleshed out later.
            The gameplay: the game would be very similar to Metal Gear Solid in which you carefully navigate the terrain and use clever hiding, stealth and trickery to avoid being spotted.  This includes hiding behind and inside objects, deploying distractions that make people look away, etc.  The game would be top-down like classic Metal Gear but would not have any violence of any kind.  When people or animals spot you, the game cuts to a quick scene showing the individual (or multiple individuals in the case of crowds) looking at you while pointing, then after an awkward silence with creepy music in the background, they will scream (like the aliens at the beginning of Space Quest 4).  The game will then inform you that someone saw you naked.
            Because Ted just got out of the shower, the first quarter of the game will involve him dripping and leaving a trail of water wherever he goes.  People can see this trail of water and follow it back to Ted, so you have to be quick and decisive until you can find a place to dry off (drying will require something that will be fleshed out later).  During the last quarter of the game, the police will slowly wise up to the fact that there is a possible streaker out on the loose and this will mean that Ted will have a much harder time of it, dodging police searching with dogs.
            The game will not show any actual nudity, instead there will be an emoji covering Ted’s unmentionables.  This emoji will doubly serve as an indicator that warns you if people suspect Ted is nearby, if they heard something, and finally when they find you.  It will have a progression of something like: Smiling-Frowning-Angry-Alarmed.  There should be quite a lot of animations for different NPCs that can spot you.  As stated above, this could include individuals or groups of people.  This could also include animals, like dogs and cats, which will likewise point at you, stare bug-eyed with creepy music playing, then scream.

Party Delve

Image result for gradius style games

            This game idea is based on two of my favorite games: Gradius and Dungeons & Dragons.  At its core, you play as a human adventurer who travels from one area to the next on a linear journey towards a main villain’s level.  Every stage scrolls from right to left and the human adventurer can walk on any solid ground, including bridges and platforms.  When you press the attack button, the adventurer stabs with his sword, dealing damage to oncoming patterns of enemy forces.  He can backpedal to avoid being stricken by enemies and to continue damaging them.  Holding down the attack button allows him to continuously stab, and whenever you defeat enemies you gain experience points.  Enemies also have a chance to drop currency, ranging from copper pieces to silver, electrum, gold, platinum, small gems, and larger jewels.  This currency can be used to upgrade your character at the villages that lay between each stage.  Now let us describe each component to the game.

            The party consists of the adventurer and any retainer he or she hires.  If a retainer dies, the adventurer will need to hire a new one and begin from scratch, buying upgraded equipment.  Every character levels up as they gain experience, all the way to a maximum of 10 levels.  When a character levels up they gain a certain amount of HP, which will be described below.
Adventuere: the primary unit, which is slightly larger than the other party members.  The adventurer starts with 5 HP and gains 5 more Hp each level attained.  When the adventurer dies, the game is over and the player must begin from the last town he or she saved their game in.  The adventurer attacks by thrusting with his sword directly ahead of the group.  As his sword upgrades, the reach of this attack improves somewhat.
Dwarves: there are two of these that the player can hire, and they stand on either side of the adventurer.  They can be equipped with shields like the adventurer, and can buy battle axes, which only go up to +4 but have good reach akin to a pole-arm and deal 4 damage per +1.  Their attacks are slightly away from the party: if the adventurer attacks towards the East, the dwarf at his left will attack to the North East, and the dwarf at his right will attack to the South East.  Dwarves gain 4 HP per level and may upgrade their armor up to +4.
Elves: there are two possible elves that the player can hire and they stand right behind where the dwarves would be.  Elves fire arrows from their bows in the same direction that the adventurer attacks.  The arrows fly until they either strike an enemy or hit a barrier, like a wall or pillar.  Their bows and arrows increase to a maximum of +4, dealing 4 damage per +1, and their armor increases to a maximum of +3.  They gain 3 HP each level they obtain.
Cleric: these stand right behind the adventurer, between where the elves would be.  They have no attack, but hold a scepter, which restores 1 HP per +1 every five seconds to the entire group.  They gain 3 HP each level and their armor and scepter can improve up to a maximum of +4.  Clerics will also remove negative status from party members every ten seconds.
Wizards: there are two wizards that can be hired and they are positioned behind where each elf would stand.  Wizards gain 2 HP each level and their armor can be increased up to +2.  They wield staves, which can be improved up to +5 and these staves send out balls of fire, which home in on enemies, dealing 5 damage per +1.
Halfling: a good hire early on, the halfling is positioned behind where the cleric would stand and between where the wizards would stand.  They attack enemies that approach from behind with their daggers, which deal 4 damage per +1 and can be upgraded to a maximum of +5.  They can wear armor up to +3 and gain 3 HP each level.  What is more, they can automatically open locked chests that appear throughout each level.  To do this, the player simply positions the halfling over the chest as it appears.

            In town you have the opportunity to upgrade equipment, pay for healing, and hire retainers.  Personal equipment for the adventurer and his party goes as follows: his basic weapon, which deals 5 damage, a shield, which provides cover from projectiles when the adventurer isn’t attacking, his boots, which determine his movement speed, and armor, which absorbs damage.  Each item may be upgraded all the way to level 5 equipment, but some retainers’ equipment is limited by how much it can be upgraded, most especially armor.  The cost per level increases exponentially, requiring the player to really save that money as he or she acquires it.
Sword: starting at level 0, this weapon has reach and damage, which increases by level.  Deals an additional 5 points of damage per +1.
Armor: starting at level 0, armor absorbs damage equal to its +1 modifier.  Ideally each new tier of armor will improve the adventurer’s appearance, starting whim appearing in woolen clothes at level 0 to having glowing, golden mail at level 5.
Shield: starting with no shield, there are three tiers of shields, beginning with the humble buckler, then increasing in size from round shield to tower shield.  These shields provide protection from projectiles while the adventurer is not attacking, but projectiles wear down the shield until it is destroyed.  The adventurer can save up and purchase a magic shield which never breaks and has the same area as a round shield.
Boots: starting at level 0, boots determine walking speed, not only for the adventurer, but for the party.  With each +1 increase (to a maximum of +5), the adventurer can walk faster and faster.  While his retainers will follow his movement, if their boots are of a lower value, they will struggle to keep up, requiring the player to stop or backpedal to rejoin them.  If everyone has the same value of boots, they will all move in unison.
Mythic Items: these are special potions and magical items that cause permanent improvements.  For example, you can buy potions that permanently increase maximum HP for a single character (maximum HP can never go higher than 50).

Enemies in the game have a broad range from small and fast to large and dangerous.  There are many enemies, each with different flavoring depending on the level.  For example, there will be ice-based enemies in the frozen tundra and fiery enemies inside the volcano.  It should be noted that, regardless of how much armor the party has and how little attack an enemy has, the minimum damage that can be dealt directly to a party member is always 1 (unless a shield blocks a projectile).  There should be no blood or gore in this game, instead when enemies die they will poof into sparks and then clouds of smoke, after which their XP value will flicker.  The following are the primary types of enemies:
Small Trains: small enemies with only 1 HP and deal only 1 damage.  They are worth 1 XP each and may drop small values of treasure.  As their name implies, these enemies follow after each other in patterns meant to hinder the party.  They can be any small creature, such as bats, rats, tiny spiders, angry snowflakes, etc.
Phalanxes: these walls of enemies converge towards enemies at a somewhat slow pace, throwing projectiles and attacking with melee when up close.  They each have 5 HP, 1 armor, and deal 3 damage.  Their leaders, which are slightly larger, drop random money, and each are worth 3 XP.  These resemble orcs, goblins, skeletons, etc.
Scattered Mediums: individual monsters with 7 HP, 2 armor, and deal 5 damage.  They are worth 5 XP and drop random money.  These come in the most variety, ranging from spiders, medium-sized dinosaurs, wolves, and so forth.
Individual Giants: as with scattered mediums, but with 20 HP, 4 armor, dealing 7 damage, and are worth 10 XP.  They always drop a good amount of money and come in a variety of large shapes, such as dragons, giants, trolls, big dinosaurs, etc.
Creepy Singles: special enemies that can come with a range of qualities and stats. These ones should be very rare and are worth 30 XP each.  They are especially dangerous as they inflict negative status, like curses (causing controls to invert), poison (causing ongoing damage every second), and petrification (causing the whole party to stop moving for four seconds).  They also drop quite a lot of money.
Big Blockers: especially large giants with 50 HP, 5 armor and deal 10 damage from projectiles and 20 damage from melee.  They stand still in front of entrances, blocking progress, requiring the player to defeat them quickly before the scrolling of scenery kills them off.  They are worth 50 XP and drop the most money.
Boss Enemies: these enemies have 500 HP, are invulnerable to all harm except in special situations where their weak point is exposed (a dragon with its mouth open, a cyclops with its eye open, etc.)  They deal 10 damage from projectiles and 20 damage from melee attacks, and defeating them earns the party 100 XP.  They drop a lot of money and mark the end of each level.  The screen no longer scrolls while fighting these, providing the player more leeway in defeating them.

            Each level of the game is called a Dungeon and consists of different flavored scenery.  Each level scrolls from right to left and last about 5 minutes each (the levels are relatively short, but the scenery scrolls slowly).  Every level starts out wide and open with waves of simple enemies, building into hazardous terrain with traps, broken paths, and obstacles requiring activation, like switches or levers that open doors or extend bridges.  All of these are functionally the same, but graphically unique, depending on the level.  For example, in a forest level the party encounters a ravine.  They see a tree with a partially damaged trunk, which when attacked will cause the tree to fall and form a bridge they can cross.  In a dungeon level there could be a switch they need to hit or a button that needs to be shot.  Chests litter each level, which may be opened by attacking them (chests have 20 HP and 5 armor) or by positioning a thief over them.  They drop random amounts of money.  Traps can be shot, causing them to go off prematurely, but some hazards, like falling rocks, occur regardless, requiring the player to maneuver the party through a break in the chaos.

The game starts the players in an open field with simple, mundane enemies for their adventurer to take on.  This brings them to a village where they can spend the first bits of money they find, either upgrading their equipment or hiring retainers.  After this there is a long, scrolling map, which uses an inky quill to show the player their progress.  Some of the levels branch off, allowing the player to choose their path, but follow this terrain:
Plains, Forest, Hills, Mountains, Frozen Mountains, Snowy Valley, Grassy Plains, Muddy Swamp, Misty Hills, Windy Mountains, Broken Wastes, Sandy Dunes, Scattered Oasis, Dense Jungle, Undead Battle Field, Blighted Wilderness, Jagged Peaks, and finally, the Enemy Stronghold.
Appropriately flavored villages lay between each “dungeon” and offer progressively better goods and services as the player progresses, and each town has a shrine or temple where progress is saved.

And there you have it, another very silly game, but one I would have much fun playing.

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