You could pretty much turn any marine life into a boss fight in a game, just by upping the size of the antagonist in question. Or not, in the case of that 3.8 metre crab!!!
Hrmph, I thought I'd already responsed to your post, but obviously not ...
The question is: how do we convey the player's (and by association human society's) lowly status? One obvious answer is to turn the player into a pathetic weakling relative to other (non-human) enemies, and build the game up around stealth rather then combat.
The other responses from yourself and Angel Dust seem to concentrate less on the player losing power relative to other creatures, and more on the player doing things which would have been "beneath him" before the fall (i.e., scavenging for food). Which, for the record, I think is also a good idea.
I think it would be interesting to have the player character scavenging in a big city, and alternating between his life pre and post apocalypse. We could give the player a different set of actions in each time frame. For instance, before the apocalypse, the character would be around a lot of food, and it would be in the player's interests to store that food in secure places, but food would not be a resource that your pre-apocalypse character would deign to pick up and carry around. After the apocalypse, on the other hand ...
Talking of post-apocalypse, it's about time we saw some overgrown apocalypses:
Screenie from Enslaved.
Oh god YES I would love overgrown apocalypse. This desert shit is so fucking tired.
A random idea that occurred to me recently was a game where you play someone with a lot of enemies that want to kill you, perhaps the leader of La Resistance.
You would have to go about various activities, such as travelling, meeting people, arranging attacks, and making deals, all while avoiding being assassinated or caught by the police.
You could use a variety of methods, including always keeping your own true identity a secret, using decoys and doubles as targets instead of yourself, constantly changing meeting locations at the last minute, carefully going over the floor plans of any location you visit to avoid places where you could be easily targeted by a sniper, constantly moving your base of operations, carefully monitoring your accomplices to be sure that they won't betray you, etc.
I have no idea if such a game would really work mechanics-wise.
This is neither crazy nor zany, but I was watching the first Star Wars movie the other day and I realized there's never really been a game that portrayed force users the way the original trilogy does. Maybe this is a shitty idea, but it made me think that a Jedi game with Thief-like mechanics (obviously, the elemental arrow stuff would be replaced by similar force powers) would be ridiculously badass. For the obligatory franchise tie-in the first mission could even be as Obi-Wan as he sneaks around the death star.
dethtoll: this is a great read http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/en...e-west-preview
Oh my god this looks fantastic.
One of the things I always loved about the Fallout series was the robots- ancient rusting hulks with no idea that the world they were once programmed for no longer exists. This looks to be completely centered around that idea, which is awesome.
This is a definite buy.
Random scenario: You are trapped among a civilisation of primitive insect-like aliens. They will attack you on sight unless you smell like them. By day you try to integrate with society to try to find a way out, and at night you stalk victims, harvesting their bodies for hormones. They are suspicious and the net is closing in on you.
Perhaps they live on Earth and think that they're actually human. You could bundle all sorts of Kafkaesque allegory in with that.
You are one of an expanding colony of people living deep within a long-abandoned underground complex, that began when a small group of people left the surface generations ago for a reason that has not been passed down. While the colony is self-sufficient, with its own means of food production and some light manufacturing ability, a population explosion has given rise to the need for more room. The problem is the complex is vast and much of it has been thrust into pitch blackness after hundreds of years of disuse. This alone wouldn't be so bad, if not for the fact that the complex is also patrolled by security bots of all shapes and sizes, as well as strange, monstrous lifeforms only vaguely resembling their normal ancestors.
Here's the kicker: the game is semi-randomized. It would be divided up into cells, each cell holding a randomized type of section- everything from an abandoned living quarters area to a power station to whatever. If a cell draws a certain type of area, it would affect other cells for congruity- so, if a cell draws an underground transport station, then every cell in a straight line from that station would be a tunnel or another station, and the tunnel may have maintenance doors. Certain cell types would be limited in number, so there would only be 3 or 4 stations in the entire game, for example. Moreover, exactly the sort of thing you see in a given cell would be randomized- sometimes doors won't work, maybe a tunnel is collapsed, forcing you to go around, et cetera et cetera. On top of that, there are multiple levels, so 30 cells in a given level times let's say 10 levels equals 300 cells to explore, each taking up roughly the same amount of square feet (if you consider the whole cell and not just the walkable area) as a massive warehouse- and you'll never explore them all.
The basic goal of the game would be to slowly but surely expand your colony. You would have to explore each cell one by one, and make sure it's secure enough to be properly defended so that the colony could expand into it. As you progress through the game, you may want to establish camps far away from the central colony, so that you may rest and reequip. The catch to doing this is first you have to make sure that there is a quick and easy path from home base to the camp site, so that supplies can move out.
Throughout the game you would begin to find hints that yours is not the only colony down here, and the complex itself is unimaginably vast. You'd find dead soldiers here and there, signs of recently-abandoned life in a living-quarters area, so on and so forth. The important thing, however, is that you never meet anyone alive who isn't from your colony, with the possible exception of a survivor of some horrible massacre.
Which leads me into something else- throughout the game, you and your colony will be stalked by something worse than the average mutant bug, some strange shadow beast that prowls the darkness, its growling audible for what must be miles. You can fight it off, yes, but you can't kill it, because it'll only come back for more later. There's only one, but the way it strikes repeatedly gives the impression that there are so many more. The finale of the game would involve fighting the creature off just beneath the surface, and finally cranking open huge bay doors that let sunlight in, killing the thing.
The twist ending is when you finally reach the surface, and find that everything is in ruins, overgrown and falling apart, and at night the shadow beasts come out...
A scifi take on Dwarf Fortress? Would it be RTS style?
After watching Inception, I wrote out a concept where you're a police investigator and the technology exists to mine brains for memories of witnessing a crime. In this case, the brain is of the homicide victim himself just after he dies, with his wife's consent since she wants the perpetrator punished (debating whether he was actually shot in the head, so his memory-world would be really glitchy and some key memories are missing, but he's been dead for about a day so there's some of that in any event.) The point is, there are enough hints in the memory of the event to lead you to mine deeper into his memory. And maybe at points you can leave for the real world and investigate real scenes for more evidence and clues, but all the juicy things are in the memory.
The gameplay would be in the style of LSD, where interacting with certain things (based on hints you get exploring) teleport you to new scenes, i.e., other memories about that person or item, so interacting in a memory-world opens up new memories to explore (the story at different times and places you can explore in any order), and you can weave in and out of the memories, going deeper and deeper trying to reach the deepest levels where all the real secrets are kept. And of course there's always more things hidden there than the crime itself. And there can be action in the scenes themselves. I have a good story scripted, but won't spoil it here. I'm thinking I might build this in Dark Mod, since I like it's object manipulation and stealth gameplay might be good (and I know it better than other engines). But I want this to be near-future, so it would need an asset rehaul. I think it'd be worth the effort, though.
Dethtoll's idea is awesome, but I think not well suited to an RTS. Better, I think, would be an FPS/RTS/RPG hybrid, where you play as one character but, as the game goes on, going from just trying to survive on your own to leading the expansion of your colony.
I just think RTSes aren't quite as well suited to the ideas of exploration and survival.
My beloved Hardwar is a little FPS-RTS-like in that you can buy & program hangers all over the world (FPS-like) that act on their own in the economy (quasi-RTS-like?). So maybe that's a kind of model. You'd actually directly order people & things to act that then they do their own thing, possibly through a portable device so you can keep track of them -- i.e., an interface that's part of the world and not any immersion-breaking game GUI. In that spirit (staying entirely in the game-world and in game-time) FPS & RTS could be a natural fit for each other.
Definitely not an RTS. It'd be in first person, but you'd have a HUD menu that would give you a rough abstract of the zones you own versus the ones you've merely explored. You would not have a complete map, but you might be able to download locations of different places, such as power substations to get the lights on.
Here's something else I was thinking about- initial difficulty becomes automation as the game progresses. How? HUD software upgrades. For example, when you're first starting out, and you're still on sublevel 10, say you want to establish a camp far away from the home colony- a camp near an elevator shaft, that, while not climbable the whole way, will at least grant you access to one or more floors. First you'd have to make sure the site is secure and easily defended- the area immediately surrounding the elevator is probably not a good idea, because who knows what could come down from above? But a half-empty warehouse nearby would serve nicely. The problem is you'd have to determine, on your own, the safest route between the camp and the colony, and so you'd have to take into account all the known sectors you've been in, and early on you'd have to figure this out yourself, which may lead you to picking a bad route. But with a software upgrade, your HUD will give you a brief rundown of each sector you've visited, and further upgrades provide more information. So each sector could be ranked by how quickly one can get from one end to another, any obstacles in the way, unknown hazards that might come in from neighboring sectors, are the doors to known danger sectors sealed off, so on and so forth. The highest upgrade would calculate all of the possible routes from point A to point B for you, and list them based on speed, safety, and distance.
There's also the matter of scavenging supplies, both for you, and for your colony and camps. Some sectors would be prime places to look- residential sectors, warehouses, manufactoria, that sort of thing. Exactly what the supply level is like would be randomized- say a residential sector's small shopping area would be ransacked, but the warehouse 3 sectors away is sealed up and hasn't ever been opened. The manufactoria would enable the further creation of supplies once they have power, personnel to operate and protect it, and ready materials (usually scrap from destroyed robots, but warehouses would provide raw materials as well.) There would also be farm sectors, operating on things like hydroponics and sunlamps and whatnot. Some would be in disuse, some would be wild and overgrown (and full of plant mutants!) and some would be in pristine condition, full of food ready for the pickings.
The more sectors you secure, the better-equipped you and your people will be, and eventually your colony and camps will be able to go out on scavenge runs- maybe they'll drag away the robots you destroyed, then they'll get a little braver and make recon trips into known resource-heavy sectors.
The important thing to remember, however, is that you have finite human resources. Since aside from the odd massacre survivor you never find anyone else alive in the tunnels, anyone who dies is one less guard, one less factory worker, one less farmer, one less supplier. So you need to be careful, especially once the shadow beast takes notice of you.
I think this ties in somewhat with the idea of automation making it easier. Trying to build an empire and defend it is really difficult if it's just you- you can't be everywhere at once. Putting a camp (By camp I mean, say, an outpost and armory) right by said elevator shaft is inviting destruction, since if you're not constantly guarding it, it will be attacked and destroyed. But if you can enlist the aid of a few people, suddenly it becomes easier. Defense of the camp has become 'automated'. It's not perfect, and if you don't take proper precautions they may be overrun and killed, but now at least you can go and get work done without having to worry about your base being razed by even the weakest of enemies.
As your power grows, more tasks would become 'automated', i.e. carried out by NPCs. The game would shift away from the just-you-surviving shooter aspect, and more towards managing your resources and the people who follow you. Of course, the NPCs would be limited in ability- not so much that they're worthless, but enough to give the player serious reason to accompany a raid.
A few games have tried similiar concepts, but none have pulled it off. Microsoft's urban assault was an RTS where you could jump into any of your units. At first, you'd spend a lot of time fighting on your own to build up a force, then you'd need to focus more on large-scale management as the size of the battle grew. It just wasn't that good a game.
The trick is to keep it small-scale. It's not a battle, it's defending every possible chokepoint, and sealing off the ones you can't. If you can't defend or seal off, you may want to consider finding another place. Example being the elevator. There's absolutely no way you can defend and hold that- not unless you manage to create easy access between floors and are able to secure every sector along the available length of shaft. Otherwise, if you only defend the bottom half of the shaft but leave the upper sector open, you risk something bad happening.
So its like evil genius, but with the ability to travel your world in first person.
I'm not sure if this has been done before, but I always thought that a super-miniaturized version of an RTS that focuses on a single squad of soldiers would be very cool.
The level design would be somewhat akin to, say, FEAR or Crysis. Basically, each level is a linear progression of encounters, but each encounter in and of itself is an open space that you can maneuver how you wish in. Interspersed between these linear levels, and more towards the end, could be larger encounters, such as being thrown into a large building and having to work your way to an extraction point.
Gameplay would focus on coordinating attacks and using your units to flank enemies. When sent to a location, units would automatically do basic survival tactics, such as taking cover and avoiding gunfire, but would generally stay in the place they are told to stay. Each character would have an "engage" and "infiltrate" mode, so as a basic tactic you could send one unit up to the line on engage, but send units to flank on infiltrate, and then switch them to engage once they have successfully flanked. Other tactics would be necessary, such as ambushing, splitting up enemy groups, setting up traps and baiting enemies, triangulating fire (maybe triangulating from different heights could be introduced later on too), etc. Level objectives would run the gamut of defending spots from waves, extracting an item from a stronghold, getting from A to B, and saving hostages.
Also, because it's a minor annoyance I've experienced in some RTS's and it'd be necessary to have units properly flank in the right ways, you can choose to select a destination for a unit OR to draw a rudimentary path for them. That way, you can specify your soldier to take a longer, safer path around an obstacle without having to micromanage the destination. Soldiers on infiltrate would properly hide behind cover and move up for stealth kills when encountering patrols along paths. They would give a standard "I can't do this" when faced with a situation in which they cannot stealthily pass a patrol, in which case extra units may be necessary to quietly take out a single patrol.
It would need a steady difficulty curve progression to introduce tactics upon the player. You would have 2-6 main characters (additional ones added in the story throughout to up the difficulty) and depending on the situation you could get control of dummy, expendable units. Dummy units can be killed without punishment but main characters must survive. A down but not out system where once a unit is downed it can crawl behind cover would be necessary I think, and once downed you would need to send another main character unit over to patch them up. A system where each main character has a different purpose, such as a sniper, a medic, an assault guy, etc. could work, or it could be a system where all main characters don't have specified purposes and you can switch their weapon loadouts as you feel.
Really, any plot context that involves a small group of rag tag soldiers works.