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 Post subject: University Projects: New and Old
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 9:18 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:38 pm
Posts: 42
Location: Preston, England/Larne, NI
Hello! I'm very excited to see a Games Design section up at the board, because although I dabble in 3D, I am primarily a designer, and I am primarily interested in design. Mechanics, conceptualisation, level design, game balance, allll that good stuff. I thought I'd post a few of my University projects to get feedback and responses different from my usual crowd. These concepts are all "done" now (my course modules only requiring I conceive the idea and illustrate it, not make it in full), but I'd still be interested in seeing what you think. I don't want to overload anyone with text, so I'll post one idea a day for a few days.

First is one of my projects from this year. My brief was to use the "climbing large creatures" mechanic from Shadow of the Colossus as a starting point to create a new concept. The learning outcome was intended to teach me how to creatively use the tools I am given, in this case, an existing mechanic.

Grease Monkey

Setting: “Grease Monkey” is set in an abstract and cartoony universe populated by anthropomorphic characters. After the destruction of earth, mankind dispatched an “arc” containing the DNA of all of earth’s species and humanity itself. Unfortunately, it crash landed en route to its intended location, ending up instead on one of the orbiting moons. The on board computer lost much of its human DNA when the arc split in the moons atmosphere, and decided to fill the blanks with the various animal species’ data it had, creating the bizarre and zany creatures which make up the games cast.

Story: Wherever parts of the arc crash landed an oasis of life was instantly created and varied societies quickly evolved, but soon the anthromorphs venture out to explore and colonise the rest of the “planet”. As these different societies began to meet and clash however, the wastes became a lawless no-man’s-land similar to the Wild West, with the anthromorphs using their inherited technological knowledge to design giant vehicles and eventually huge mechs dubbed “Ramblers” to traverse the vast expanses of the moon and claim territory, by force if need be. The player takes the role of Bishop, an engineer responsible for the maintenance and repair of several of these Rambler units.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_8sj8MJezjzM/S ... A31TEX.jpg

Gameplay: The main part of the game is whenever the Rambler Bishop is responsible for is facing some form of threat, be it an environmental hazard or quite often, a battle with another Rambler. The Ramblers are all basically walking levels, their bodies/chassis covered in various platforms and surfaces which the player can platform their way across using Bishops acrobatic abilities; which include jumping, shimmying, climbing up, sliding down, swinging with his spanner/wrench and pole walking, among others. Generally the player will be informed of a specific problem the Rambler is suffering, and have to travel across the surface of the Rambler, in order to reach a maintenance room somewhere on its anatomy, and repair the problem via a motion-based “mini-game” or contextual action. Some earl y examples of this form of level design, and the contextual actions, can be seen in the accompanying “pitch” boards.

Of course, during these sections the Rambler is not merely standing still, it will be walking, running, punching, taking fire, jumping, and performing various other actions. The player is kept informed of the progressing external events via occasional comic-book style cut-in frames which show cinematic angles of the Ramblers current status and movement. (Again, this can be seen in the pitch boards) The player is also warned in advance if the Rambler is about to undertake any action or damage so dramatic it will affect gravity or stability via a “hazard” icon in the HUD. At this point they must use the “grip” button to make Bishop hold tight to the closest railing, pipe or edge, or they may be thrown to a lower platform, interrupting their attempt to reach an area requiring maintenance.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_8sj8MJezjzM/S ... A32TEX.jpg

New elements will be introduced to this formula as the game continues in order to keep the experience from going stale. This includes opportunities to “jump ship” to an enemy Rambler and perform actions at key points to sabotage rather than repair, the acquisition of new “stolen” Ramblers from completed battles as new areas, the extra difficulty of damage affecting the layout and stability of the Ramblers platforms, the introduction of internal rooms and areas inside the Ramblers, which will act as alternative paths between the surface points and maintenance areas, and new environments. At first the barren areas of the moon appear to be purely an alien desert, but eventually this gives way to mountainous regions and frozen wastes, all of which have their own challenges and obstacles for the player. During environmental hazards, Bishop may even have to leave the Rambler in order to perform tasks such as untangling it from vines or triggering landslides to clear a blocked path.

Apologies about the links in place of imagery, I could not get attach to work.

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 Post subject: Re: University Projects: New and Old
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 5:56 pm 
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Location: Dorset, UK
I love this idea :) And you can thank me for the Game Design board ;)

Forgive me if I missed it, but will this be third person? Since third person I think would be the best choice, allowing the player to see the cool acrobatics/slo- mo part :D

We there be any parts where the game slows down, and we are allowed to roam at all? So we can take our time in this cool world?

I realise this was a project for school. So you mightn't have thought this far ahead.

Cheers

Harry

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 Post subject: Re: University Projects: New and Old
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 9:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:38 pm
Posts: 42
Location: Preston, England/Larne, NI
Thank you for the games design board! lol

It is indeed third person, it would be played in traditional third person adventure perspective, with the camera button zooming out Zak and Wiki style and showing a more "side on" perspective so you can see where you are trying to get to on the Rambler.

If you mean slow down as in, parts where the robot isn't in trouble or in battle, then yes! I'd actually planned on having a bunch of other crew members on board operating the Rambler, and between action scenes you would be allowed to roam the Rambler freely conversing with them. Similar to in Final Fantasy 7's airship, where you could run around chatting to the other characters before indicating you are "ready" for the next part of the game.

I tend to think way farther than I'm meant too lol

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 Post subject: Re: University Projects: New and Old
PostPosted: Sat Jan 16, 2010 9:37 pm 
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Location: St Helens
dude you need to get this made and released as wii ware or on psn/xbox live arcade i'd pay to play it

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 Post subject: Re: University Projects: New and Old
PostPosted: Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:24 am 
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Nice idea, great work mate

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 Post subject: Re: University Projects: New and Old
PostPosted: Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:45 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:37 pm
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Location: Sweden
Looks great mate, love the concept actually. Okay I picture the game like this: The player is Bishop a Rambler mechanic, the Rambler performs different tasks like fighting other Rambler or helps in environmental threats. As the Rambler does this it will eventually brake down without maintenance so the players part in the whole game is to repair the robot?

I think that one of the main things about Shadow of The Colossus was that you felt like a hero and an adventurer taking on something bigger than yourself. In some ways the Bishop is a Hero indeed because the job needs to be done. Another part of Shadow of The Colossus is the physics, there needs to exist a technology behind the game to make it even more unpredictable.

Like the physics based jump you can do on the third colossus

at (0:23)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tw9hgQfmRBw

One way to start of each level instead of starting on the Rambler would be catapulting to it or something.
But yeah, Great idea you have there mate, love it, just tell us if you need any help creating some 3d art for the thing :)

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