Open Source Game Concepts


Mqark

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Well, I've just discovered after all these years and several versions of word and several windows OS releases that my original documents are un-openable in their native from - hmmpf, so I'll attempt to find a converter / repairer that get's them open properly. For the mean time, here's a brief version of one from memory:

Bang! Garner (AKA Puzzlebots)

Genre: 3D Puzzle

Concept
What would happen if you were unfortunate enough to be blown apart? Well, obviously, all of your body parts would have an overwhelming desire to get back together with the rest of the parts that make the body whole.

The separate parts need to find the relevant joining parts, a nose needs to find a head for example. The nose and a leg will not be able to recombine to continue the search. Also various body parts wont be able to navigate the environment to continue the search until they’ve found another part, e.g. a bum needs legs to jump high!

Its your task to rebuild yourself, as there are approximately 25 controllable body parts each with a different control method, you will have the option to select which part to control whenever you wish, say for instance that you decide to start with the nose, but feel you’ve reached an insurmountable barrier (well insurmountable as a nose anyway!), then you can switch control to a leg and you are transported to the current position of that leg.

There is an on-screen operation! style indicator, showing which body part you currently control (e.g. left or right leg) and how many other body parts are needed to complete the body. Of course, as you go along, will you get larger and more complete, this can be to your disadvantage as well as your advantage, because if you don’t rescue the appropriate body parts in the correct sequence, you may be unable to reach that last eyeball that’s rolled down the drain.

You will have the option to disengage parts and leave them in a pile ready for assembling elsewhere once you've found that difficult part.

In order for this not to be gross (but there could be a market for that!) I imagine the main "character" to be a robot which has a tendency to explode. This allows for different styles of robots in different environments.

I see it being quite a frenetic game played against the clock. It's clearly quite a simple concept, and at the time there wasn't anything quite like it - I don't *think* there's anything like it now, but it’s something we’ll have to accept that you might have been recalling something deep within your memory and confusing it with a new idea.

I’d pitch this as a big jolly colorful 3D platformer style game with graphics and sound to suit.

If anyone can help with document recovery then that would be pretty useful!

I hope to be along with some more soonish...

Cyclone rangers

Genre: Ancient Greek and Weather theme 3D racing / platform game

Concept
Earth has become overrun by evil. The god Zeus has declared war against the evil leaders, and has commissioned a troop of special soldiers. Zeus uses his control over the weather to send the soldiers down to earth to wage battle with the evil ones.

Each mission sees the solider using a different type of weather to make his journey from the heavens down to the earth:

Lightening, which the player rides like a wave, always making sure he follows Zeus’s instructions as to which fork to turn to next as he will fall straight to earth if he chooses the wrong fork.
Rain, which the player uses as a set of steps, which he can jump onto to move in any direction, above, below or around him.
Tornado, which the player glides in to make his way to earth, he must ride the spiraling air currents with a great degree of skill, because if he were to lose concentration for even a split second, he would lose control, and it may be a long time before he can regain control over his flight.
Snow (Like the rain), cannot be used for too long, as the weight of the player would only crumble the Snow flake he was standing on.

Hail, again the player is discouraged from hogging a single stone of hail, as he is likely to freeze to the hail stone and eventually crash into the ground.

When the player reaches the ground, he can safely hop off the last Snow flake just above ground level, then it’s down to battle with the one of the evil ones. The evil ones are 5 classical Greek villains, Medusa, Griffin, Hydra, Minotaur and Cyclops.

So the idea was to be able to traverse different weather systems and the variety of ways they allow you to move / interact. It seemed a perfect fit to use Zeus as a bit of a back story - these days, the graphics could make this a stunningly presented idea, however it is quite a tenuous like and I'm not sure how strong it could be as an idea.

[edit] ARRRGH - what's up with this forum - I don't want to add two post's together, I want two seperate posts. AND what's up with the bold tags?....
 
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OrR

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Ok, let me rephrase this old old game idea I once had one more time:


Update

In a parallel world that is only slightly more insane than ours, God exists. The old dude on his cloud created the humans a few thousand years ago. They have been developing very well. In fact, they have developed faster and better than He would ever have assumed. The inefficient operating system running on the humans' brains is severely outdated at this point. It's time for an update.
Of course, God can't take care of the more than 6 billion humans all by himself. Or at least he is too lazy to. So he creates a bunch of angels to help him. Or, more precisely, do the job for him. You are one of them. Your job is to take on a batch of 100 people and infect each and every one of them with the nanobots performing the brain update. Once you are finished, there are another 100 people already waiting for you somewhere else...


Gameplay

The game plays like a typical first person/3rd person action game (GTA 3&4, Fallout 3, ...). The levels vary in size but they are all strictly limited to an area inhabited by 100 people. The game focuses on the story and the daily routines of these 100 people. To finish a level, you have to get to know it's inhabitants and find clever solutions for very openly designed puzzles.

Your main goal is to update people's brains and thus infect them with the nanobots you are provided with. There are many different ways to accomplish this. Some examples:
-Put them in food. Infect the whole potato supply in the supermarket and you will have updated a good portion of the level's inhabitants after a while. Present a child with an infected lollipop.
-Sneak up to people from behind and inject the nanobots directly.
-Stick them to things people might touch. For example on a dog's head that is later petted by it's owner. Or a switch on a traffic light that is used by many people. The chance that people get infected this way might not be 100%, though.
-Shoot them at people with one of the game's weapons. These are not easy to get, though.

Of course, you have to be careful not to attract any attention. You are a bloody angel after all! If people start looking at you too closely, they may even notice your wings... Attention is represented as a bar and almost every action adds a little to it. If you put bots into food when nobody is around, you don't gain attention. However, if you shoot somebody with a sniper rifle and other people see you doing it, well, that is just not a good idea. If you attract too much attention, you are declared faulty, called back to heaven and eliminated. But even before that, the more attention you gain, the harder your life gets. Attention slowly vanishes with time so you might be able to do something more extreme every once in a while.

At the beginning of a level you get exactly the 100 nanobots you should need. Of course, they almost certainly will not be enough. One person eats three infected potatoes and you are already two nanobots down. You can get more nanobots from your superior in heaven. Your contact to him is through a waste container in a dark corner of the level. However, the great nanobot factory in the sky does not run on thin air. Making nanobots costs money, so if you waste them, you will have to pay to get more. Money can be earned in many different ways, depending on the level context. It can also be stolen, but that easily attracts attention. Your contact in heaven can also provide you with weapons and other useful equipment but, you guessed it, only for adequate sums of money.


Goal

Your goal on the first playthrough is to finish the levels by infecting all 100 people in them. That does not mean, you have finished the game, though. Your result gets a rank from S to D, depending on a number of factors like time needed and attention gained. Improve your rank! After that, you can play the levels again with special conditions, like a much smaller attention-bar, no money or a strictly limited amount of nanobots.
Another gameplay variant is time trial mode where you have to play the levels as quickly as possible. For this mode, all random elements are taken out and the levels are strictly scripted. Then there is multiplayer mode where you play the same level with a bunch of other players, competing for who can update most people, or other goals like updating special hard to get to people or even updating each other.


Style

The game should be somewhat realistic, especially during gameplay. Of course, humor plays a major role, and the vibe shouldn't be that different to GTA. All game modes and levels are justified with sequences featuring the heavenly world and even God himself and these can be borderline insane. If you contact heaven in the game or, for example, get a friendly reminder that you are causing too much attention, some of this crazyness shines through to the normal world.

Some example levels:
-One skyscraper in a big city. (Tokio, New York)
-A few blocks in a town. (Random European town)
-Small village of 100 inhabitants (Island would be a beautiful environment)
-Huge, thinly inhabited area in Siberia.
-Native tribe in a jungle.
-Typical American gated community.
-North Korean weapons factory.
Bonus levels:
-The ISS.
-A cow herd which needs a compatibility patch.
Levels are made from a lot of rather average people but there are a number of more special characters with unique characters. There might be an old dude who never leaves the house. Another one only gets pizza for food, delivered from outside the level, and sits in front of his computer all day. Some people need to go to work or school and thus leave the level for most of the day. Some people are much more paranoid than others and look around all the time.


What makes this awesome?

A game with the mechanics of a modern 3D action title but with no violence. A living, breathing world with intelligent AI characters featuring realistic behavior but with the fun factor and replayability of an arcade game. Complete freedom! Only the people are scripted. There is no story guiding you on a narrow path through a level. Instead you make your own story, based on your abilities and your creativity. I want to play this some day!


Challenges

The biggest challenge in actually making this game are probably the AI characters. They have to have a heavily scripted daily routine, every one of them being noticeably individual. At the same time, they have to be able to react to the player and to react to other AIs reacting to the player. The world needs to be simulated to as much detail as possible so that the crazy methods players come up with to infect people actually do work as one would expect. However, the level of detail can be chosen by the developer, and a first version does not have to be very complex. It could still work quite well in a 2D top down world with limited detail.


Opinions? Feedback? Anyone up for actually making this game? :D
 
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Chip

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I cleaned up your formatting as best I could. The problem with URLs, multiplying apostrophes, and tags breaking on edit are known forum bugs that we're waiting to have fixed. Your two posts were combined because of an anti-double-post feature that does just that.

To get your documents open I'd first suggest Openoffice. It is free and supports every document format I've ever heard of: www.openoffice.org
 
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Mqark

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'Chip' said:
I cleaned up your formatting as best I could. The problem with URLs, multiplying apostrophes, and tags breaking on edit are known forum bugs that we're waiting to have fixed. Your two posts were combined because of an anti-double-post feature that does just that.

To get your documents open I'd first suggest Openoffice. It is free and supports every document format I've ever heard of: www.openoffice.org
Thanks Chip. I'll try your suggestion.
 
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Mqark

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@OrR

I also had the notion that playing as an angel as some kind of special agent might be quite intriguing, but i could never come up with a framework of an idea I was completely happy with.
I like your idea of trying to influence people, but for me - just my opinion, don't be offended please - I can't come to terms with nanobots and angels. I think angles would have more of a mystical magical influence on people.

I know you're suggesting a twisted parallel world and that could work really well if it was a dark and twisted Tim Burton or Tim Schafer style world - I just don't see nanobots fitting in there.

I think Shenmue did quite a good job of imitating a real world with characters that seemed to be independent and go about their everyday life. So I can see where you're coming from there.


My loose idea that I didn't really like on this theme (if you're at all interested) is as follows:

Name: Heaven help us (I hate it - but it's a start)

An agent must be killed and sent to what appears to be heaven (but it's actually a con). He must get to the top to establish where the lost souls are and how to send them back to the true heaven as this final resting place is nothing more than a front for the devil. Psychic mediums uncovered this information by communing with pissed off spirits.
The agent must be convinced to make the ultimate sacrifice for humanities future beyond the grave. He must wade through the seemingly utopian existence to discover a way to protect the innocent souls. This spirit faces the strongest opposition from souls that have no reason to believe they are in fact in purgatory. He must find some way to convince them that this false Heaven is in fact their prison and that they have been cheated out of their rightful destiny. The foe is none other than the Devil, the agent must find someway of gaining assistance from the other side which is always just a hands reach away and yet
poles apart.

Alternatively, someone in this heaven realises it's wrong and has to do something about it. Maybe a bit too much like other plots? (Matrix)...

I'm not sure what kind of play mechanic this could be - RPG or first person action... The pre-amble sort of implies an investigative role play game.
 
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Kramy

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Wow, that static game was interesting. My vision seems to be enhanced in an odd way. All the colours I'm seeing are so smooth and dull, but I can see quite far.

Strange.
 
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Mqark

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Right - last one for a while... (they're getting less structured all the time and I'm breaking my own rules!)

TV world

You play the role of little people inside a TV trying to keep the viewers entertained - by acting out different types of programs and scenes. You get to see what the show is then you have to choose outfits and props from a small store. You are actually in a TV, and you get a collection of lines that your character can say at anytime that are appropriate to the type of show, but it is all about ad-libbing and coming up with a script all of your own. The view is divided into 2. A large view and a picture in picture style view - you mostly see from inside out - so as you can see a prop box inside the telly and trap doors / rigs etc that are used to allow you to move around a set. You also see an outside in view showing you what your show looks like on the TV.

The inside out view has a large glass fish eye lens effect with very large figures who are the viewers watching your show. you can gauge your performance by how uncomfortable they look or if they have left the room or not. They will also laugh, scream , cry or seem attentive when you are performing at appropriate times.

The viewers have a remote control - if the channel hop coz they are unhappy with your performance, then you will hear a loud hissing noise, see snow on your screen and then be given a few seconds to find out what the next program should be and to change costumes and get props.

You won't have to totally ad-lib as there will be a computer controlled cast if you chose feeding you lines and getting you into particular situations. There is good opportunity to have lots of action fun in western shoot outs, swashbuckling, star trek shows etc. loads of opportunities for spoofs on many famous shows. drama could be done and soaps - but only with tongue firmly in cheek.

Two players or more could play together to act out a scene where they have a western style shoot out etc. All that really needs to be done is for a narrator to keep a story going in introductions and cut scenes. The "Actors" need only act out the action scenes and maybe throw some dialogue out here and there. I can see a good selection of pre prepared lines like in monkey island for the characters to say. could lead to some very funny banter

This isn't like previous games that have basically set their action in a filmic environment, as they don't give the impression that you are acting. Nor is it like a cinema ware game that has you playing sub games that take inspiration from scenes in films. they all have just come across as video games with a theme created by influences from certain movie styles.

The whole idea of this game if very much of complete immersion into a TV show - but in the slightly surreal notion that you are a little person in a TV set. You control all of the action within a tightly controlled but otherwise completely free environment. If you want to stand still for two minutes you can, however you may find that the viewers get annoyed and possibly channel hop - and ultimately turn off the TV set.

You are responsible for producing an entire evenings viewing for 4 channels of TV. This will consist of around 8 shows of about 30 minutes (4 hours).

This isn't anything like the sim's, sim city, populous etc. this is you 3rd person perspective single character dealing with his environment and circumstances. - more like tomb raider etc. You aren't the producer, director etc. you are the star (in a sense).

If it’s going to be compared to anything, it’s little computer people on the C64 – or maybe at a push kung-fu chaos on the Xbox – however unlike the xbox game where the concept was loosely that you were making a show, the action in reality just being a power stone style beat-em up. In this game you really are in a show trying to hit cues and prompts and trying to provoke a reaction from your audience.

The background scene will change behind you to represent different locations by means of a painted curtain unravelling behind you.

You could be expected to advertise products during ad breaks.

Think of the TV show ‘Who’s line is it anyway?’ and you’re on the right lines.

Sports shows could be entertaining. especially if you play a porky character...

Don't know why there are little people in the TV set - they are just there.
 
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OrR

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'Mqark' said:
@OrR

I also had the notion that playing as an angel as some kind of special agent might be quite intriguing, but i could never come up with a framework of an idea I was completely happy with.
I like your idea of trying to influence people, but for me - just my opinion, don't be offended please - I can't come to terms with nanobots and angels. I think angles would have more of a mystical magical influence on people.

I know you're suggesting a twisted parallel world and that could work really well if it was a dark and twisted Tim Burton or Tim Schafer style world - I just don't see nanobots fitting in there.
Well, I don't think of the backstory as your biblical or anime heaven. Instead, it should feel like a B-movie, with God being a lazy Roman dictator type, hairstyles from the 70s and 80s etc. In fact, I'd love the heaven-scenes to be actual live action movie sequences. That way you get a great contrast between the heavenly world and the earthly world but not the way you would expect... Down on earth, however, everything is pretty much as it is in reality. You can't just do magic to reconfigure a brain, you need nanotechnology. While the world is condensed and exaggerated a little, it is not cartoony. In a cartoon world, you can do everything, but people often won't care or even notice. Only if you use a realistic setting they will be surprised by little twists you put into it.
 
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Mqark

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'OrR' said:
'Mqark' said:
@OrR

I also had the notion that playing as an angel as some kind of special agent might be quite intriguing, but i could never come up with a framework of an idea I was completely happy with.
I like your idea of trying to influence people, but for me - just my opinion, don't be offended please - I can't come to terms with nanobots and angels. I think angles would have more of a mystical magical influence on people.

I know you're suggesting a twisted parallel world and that could work really well if it was a dark and twisted Tim Burton or Tim Schafer style world - I just don't see nanobots fitting in there.
Well, I don't think of the backstory as your biblical or anime heaven. Instead, it should feel like a B-movie, with God being a lazy Roman dictator type, hairstyles from the 70s and 80s etc. In fact, I'd love the heaven-scenes to be actual live action movie sequences. That way you get a great contrast between the heavenly worl and the earthly world but not the way you would expect...


Have you seen Zardoz? Because that sounds almost exactly like what you've just described. A perfect fit as far as I can tell.
It's difficult to see exactly what someone means from just descriptions alone so of course if at all possible it is best to support the ideas with diagrams, sketches and story boards - but that's where most of will fall down as we probably don't feel capable of putting what we can see in our heads down onto paper.

I'd love to be able to describe these ideas of mine (wether they're any good or not) in a much better way.
 
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OrR

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I've never heard of Zardoz but it looks interesting... Might watch it one of these days. B) I also still haven't played Shenmue. :(

I am bad at drawing and I have no programming skills so pretty much all I can do is write down ideas.

By the way, I really like your body parts puzzle idea. Of course, I'd prefer to play with real body parts instead of the kids friendly robot version. :D
 
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Raz

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Ive always wanted to see an online FFTA online game... Would be awesome if players connect all around the world and make clans and have battles and such......
 

typs lik dis

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Final Fantasy Tactics can already be played with online multiplayer on the PSP if you have War of the Lions and a router or wifi chipset compatible with Xlink Kai. FFTA can be played online in any emulator with netplay, and you can arrange matches on forums.
 

Tempel

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'OrR' said:
The biggest challenge in actually making this game are probably the AI characters. They have to have a heavily scripted daily routine, every one of them being noticeably individual. At the same time, they have to be able to react to the player and to react to other AIs reacting to the player. The world needs to be simulated to as much detail as possible so that the crazy methods players come up with to infect people actually do work as one would expect. However, the level of detail can be chosen by the developer, and a first version does not have to be very complex. It could still work quite well in a 2D top down world with limited detail.
If you could do this, there are innumerable amazing games that could be made; if games are about simulating things we can't do, this would allow us to play around with social effects in ways that we are reluctant to do for real. Problem is, I have no idea how to create a realistic social simulator, and I expect many people are in the same boat. If someone was willing to create a good framework for this, I would be ecstatic, but I don't count on us homebrewers being able to make it any sooner than the professionals who would certainly sell it at exorbitant prices.

But nevertheless! If we had some solid social simulation, we could make a game where, with limited interactivity, you must convince a society that you exist. Or a game where you play a character who can control time and must carefully manipulate events to achieve certain goals. Or a standard RPG that has more convincing and interactive townsfolk. The possibilities are approximately endless.
 
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Mqark

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'Mqark' said:
'Chip' said:
I cleaned up your formatting as best I could. The problem with URLs, multiplying apostrophes, and tags breaking on edit are known forum bugs that we're waiting to have fixed. Your two posts were combined because of an anti-double-post feature that does just that.

To get your documents open I'd first suggest Openoffice. It is free and supports every document format I've ever heard of: www.openoffice.org
Thanks Chip. I'll try your suggestion.


Well, look at that! It only bloody works :D colour me impressed!
Thanks so much Chip - I'd not of thought of that, and now this software will be a permanent resident on my Pandora!!!
 
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