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TIGSource ForumsCommunityTownhallForum IssuesArchived subforums (read only)Archived ProjectsBalding's Quest (Moderator: BMcC)Balding's Quest: Milestone 2
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Derek
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« Reply #60 on: February 27, 2007, 06:53:34 PM »

We'll start designing levels eventually, but first I want to just get everyone to brainstorm.

It's going to be a back and forth:

1. Throw some ideas out there based on what we've already got.

2. BMcC and Arne can direct and focus the flow a bit with words and artwork.

3. Rinse and repeat.

The goal for this milestone is to get a lot of design work and basic infrastructure for the game laid out so that in M3 we can concentrate on implementation.
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BMcC
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« Reply #61 on: February 27, 2007, 06:58:54 PM »

Yeah, now is the time to throw any and every idea you've got out there.  Before things start getting set in stone.

Xion:  I very much like the idea of secret exits that open up new paths to new levels.  Or maybe even alternate paths connecting existing levels!  Very Super Mario World. Smiley

Re: Timed Events -- Someone mentioned a level with the water level rising WAY back, and I thought that pretty cool... and easy to work in. Grin
« Last Edit: February 27, 2007, 07:05:45 PM by BMcC » Logged

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« Reply #62 on: February 27, 2007, 07:55:50 PM »

But maybe a tutorial breaking down how it's made sometime?  That could be applied to many languages.
That'd be very nice. Kiss
Aah... just a little source code? Puh-leeeease?

I don't care too much about a tutorial, there is plenty of stuff out there like that. Unless you're gonna do something amazing beyond "this is how you write a basic platformer."

I guess in the best case you could hook up Lua or something and allow for some scripting. People have a ton of whacky gameplay ideas, and with talk about each level being a minigame in its own right, you'll either have to code a ton of special behavior for everyone designing levels, or expose some of the game to people that want to add custom behaviors. Or you could just keep the project simple and keep out crazy ideas that require a lot of custom code outside of the core game mechanics.

In the worst case someone could end up writing another game in parrellel with the same art, or small apps demonstrating chunks of gameplay (seems like this has already happened), but that is against the spirit of the project and clearly won't scale beyond the initial stages of development.
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« Reply #63 on: February 27, 2007, 07:59:40 PM »

[...] or small apps demonstrating chunks of gameplay (seems like this has already happened) [...]

Buh?  Huh?
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« Reply #64 on: February 27, 2007, 08:02:38 PM »

It'd be cool if there were some off-map levels, like sky and desert, that would be accessed by levels on the edge of the map that have maybe a hidden exit. Like, push this box out of the way to find a hidden door. Or use this item here to blow a hole in the background revealing a tunnel....

I agree.
That would be so neat (maybe make 2 or 3 secrets).  Just to add to that idea, how about having enemies that don't really harm you but will either grab you or suck/swallow you in to a secret area (like some  sort of ground plant, or a puddle of goop).  The player won't know this though. (it's a secret) I think having one of these types of extras every now and then is nice.  B/c then players will want more (even though they won't get anymore   Lips Sealed   ).  I guess it's like only getting one slice of delicious cake, and that's it.  Great now my brain is bubbling!  Thanks a lot bud.   Huh?



That rising water is sounding good.  hmmm....Maybe one part of the ice/snow level should have snow falling that accumulates.  That would be very  Shocked  .  no pressure though.   Lips Sealed Smiley
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« Reply #65 on: February 27, 2007, 08:16:48 PM »

[...] or small apps demonstrating chunks of gameplay (seems like this has already happened) [...]

Buh?  Huh?
Nothing complex...  Someone had some jumping demo or something?
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BMcC
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« Reply #66 on: February 27, 2007, 08:20:43 PM »

[...] or small apps demonstrating chunks of gameplay (seems like this has already happened) [...]
Buh?  Huh?
Nothing complex...  Someone had some jumping demo or something?

Huh... I didn't know of it.  Sad

So far I've just developed the game, starting from a blank white screen.
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« Reply #67 on: February 27, 2007, 08:28:03 PM »

http://web.telia.com/~u48508900/platform/jump.bmx - from Arne
and http://madgarden.googlepages.com/jumpy.zip from Madgarden. 

Simple demos that may have been written earlier and maybe not directly related to the game. Sorry if you misunderstood, I didn't want to make you think someone was coding ahead of you.
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« Reply #68 on: February 27, 2007, 08:40:50 PM »

The boss stages are singing their siren song already!
Given the style of the game the boss fights could be anything from a Giant Metal Monster Crab that you have to defeat by activating a piston to crack that tough shell to a shaolin priest on a rock beneath a waterfall his beard flowing like water that requires you to pass an arduous challenge instead of combat or surviving a horde of zombies that keep rising from the grave.

These ideas probably won't be used but should the bosses be tied to the plot or will they be arbitrarily based on what we find fun to make?
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BMcC
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« Reply #69 on: February 27, 2007, 09:26:31 PM »

@Impossible:  Heh, I've never seen that code from Arne before, and I remember the jump test being posted, but IIRC I didn't play it 'cause I had already put the jumping in place...  Embarrassed

@Matt:  I dunno if we'll have time for all that, so we're just going to have to combine it all into Giant Metal Sholin Crab Zombies.  In space.

(Right now, just focus on fun ideas. Smiley)
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« Reply #70 on: February 27, 2007, 09:33:27 PM »

In one of the factory levels, you could start out in the dark, or have select few emergency lights on in the level, and you have to get to a switch to turn the power/lights on before you can beat the level.  That would also turn on any mechanical traps and enemies as well.  For this idea to work, however, it'd have to be designed so that getting to the switch does not involve a lot of blind trial and error pitfalls, because that's just annoying.

For the idea of helping NPCs so they help you, were you thinking only bosses, or any NPC, like a little rabid turtle wanting food, and you're the closest thing to it, until you knock an apple into it's path, kinda thing?  The latter is what I was envisioning, and liked.  Mind, as some one else said, it couldn't be that common an aspect of the game.

The extra, secret, off-map levels is a great idea.  The incredible amount of exploration available in Super Mario World really adds re-playability.  That game makes me so warm and fuzzy inside.
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« Reply #71 on: February 27, 2007, 09:35:41 PM »

That game makes me so warm and fuzzy inside.

I know!  Kiss  I might need to take a break and play through it again.  (And call it "research.")

The core platforming engine is totally completely done as of right now, by the way.  Grin
« Last Edit: February 27, 2007, 09:44:53 PM by BMcC » Logged

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« Reply #72 on: February 27, 2007, 10:57:31 PM »

For the idea of helping NPCs so they help you, were you thinking only bosses, or any NPC, like a little rabid turtle wanting food, and you're the closest thing to it, until you knock an apple into it's path, kinda thing?  The latter is what I was envisioning, and liked.  Mind, as some one else said, it couldn't be that common an aspect of the game.
I wasn't thinking specifically boss NPCs, but probably NPCs that were interesting / special in some way.  Ones that you could actually maybe put in some fun dialog for, and also scatter subtle clues about so the player knows to help them.  So some bosses might be good candidates.
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« Reply #73 on: February 28, 2007, 08:51:47 AM »

At the moment ideas are being thrown around at an alarming rate and no ranking of actually how good they are and whether they would fit.

Derek compiled some stuff from the old thread, I think he might do the same again with this one once the time comes. At any rate I will look through the thread again when doing the level mockups, and I've already have some stuff in the back of my head.

I've made a tool for automatic tile extraction from level mockups, I'll show once it's presentable. Right now I have work to tend to though, so maybe later his night.

I liked my story/setup about the antagonist, maybe a cthulu-like comic creature, using a materializer to bring his old game collection to life and mix it with reality, because then the homages make sense and getting the games back makes sense. It allows for great nostalgia opportunities (but possibly also copyright/licence infringement :/ ).
« Last Edit: February 28, 2007, 08:54:14 AM by Arne » Logged
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« Reply #74 on: February 28, 2007, 10:06:58 AM »

If it's free/for the sake of parody/your own interpretation of the character (which it is - pixel art deforms everything away from its origin, unless you start lifting retro game characters direct), isn't it fair use? I don't know. I'm no lawyer.
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« Reply #75 on: February 28, 2007, 10:21:03 AM »

I wasn't thinking specifically boss NPCs, but probably NPCs that were interesting / special in some way.  Ones that you could actually maybe put in some fun dialog for, and also scatter subtle clues about so the player knows to help them.  So some bosses might be good candidates.

I think dialog would be too much, give it away too easily.  If the objects are there in the level, and there is some kind of connection between the behaviour or appearance of the NPC and the object, I'd think that would be hint enough.  Like an obviously powered down robot and a battery, each at opposite ends of a level, most likely meaning retracing your steps.

This brings up another question.  If the levels are going to be timed, would the ideal time (the time required for it to be beaten in to get something special from it) include any NPC interaction, or not?  I believe it was said that the levels would be replayable once beaten to attempt a better time.  If that's the case, then I suppose a straight run through, excluding any NPC interaction, like any other stage, would be the ideal time.  At the same time, if the NPC interaction is included in the time, and the player beats it, and realizes they were way under the time, that the time was easier to beat than most, then it's a good clue that there's more to the level than they thought.

This brings up another, thankfully smaller point.  Will the time be displayed when you're playing?  Will the player actually realize they're supposed to beat it as fast as possible?  Or will it just make a special ding or something if you do beat it in the ideal time?  The difference being, of course, bringing the time to there attention, and how aware they are of the possibility of secrets.
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« Reply #76 on: February 28, 2007, 10:27:12 AM »

If it's free/for the sake of parody/your own interpretation of the character (which it is - pixel art deforms everything away from its origin, unless you start lifting retro game characters direct), isn't it fair use? I don't know. I'm no lawyer.
My understanding is:
Free: Not a sufficient condition for fair use (helps though)
Parody: Yes, as long as you're actually parodying the thing you're copying (for an example of doing it wrong, look up Penny Arcade's strawberry shortcake comic)
Your own interpretation: Irrelevant -- it's still a derivative work

So as far as tributes go, you're probably not going to fall under parody or fair use.  You could fall under fair use if you just have a simple image to illustrate 'this is what that video game looked like,' so that could allow, eg, collectible trophy images.  You could also dodge a lot of the issues by giving a nod to the style of a game without actually copying it or using its name -- eg, the secret level that looks suspiciously like a Metroid game.  And finally, there's the 'as long as it's not super blatant, who will even care?' protection of being a low profile project run by people who aren't worth suing.
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« Reply #77 on: February 28, 2007, 10:32:47 AM »

I wasn't thinking specifically boss NPCs, but probably NPCs that were interesting / special in some way.  Ones that you could actually maybe put in some fun dialog for, and also scatter subtle clues about so the player knows to help them.  So some bosses might be good candidates.
I think dialog would be too much, give it away too easily.  If the objects are there in the level, and there is some kind of connection between the behaviour or appearance of the NPC and the object, I'd think that would be hint enough.  Like an obviously powered down robot and a battery, each at opposite ends of a level, most likely meaning retracing your steps.
Right -- don't do dialog to give clues that the character wants something.  I was thinking they could do dialog, however, after you've given them what they want.  Like, you give the robot his battery, he wakes up and says,
"YOU COME BACK HERE WITH THAT BATTERY, YOUNG MEGATRON, YOU COME BACK HERE THIS INSTANT!"
"..."
"... you're not a young Megatron.  Where did that little rascal go?  Wait, where am I?  What time is it?  What day is it?"

... or something like that.
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BMcC
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« Reply #78 on: February 28, 2007, 10:57:41 AM »

I liked my story/setup about the antagonist, maybe a cthulu-like comic creature, using a materializer to bring his old game collection to life and mix it with reality, because then the homages make sense and getting the games back makes sense. It allows for great nostalgia opportunities (but possibly also copyright/licence infringement :/).

Personally, I would rather let the homages be really cool secrets and have the "main" game be 100% original.  I like collecting the game discs (and being able to view them your collection) as an objective, though, and I don't think there would be any copyright issues with it.

I have a thought on the story that I'd like to run by you -- OK, say the villain steals your game collection and you go off to reclaim it, right?  I think it would be neat if the main character was just some balding loser who sits on his busted couch playing old videogames all day, but when they get stolen, he rises to the occasion and conquers all these crazy areas and obstacles laid before him.  But (here's my idea) when he finally recovers them all, he just returns to his couch and starts playing them again, not even realizing that the journey he just undertook in real life was as amazing as any game.

Thoughts?
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« Reply #79 on: February 28, 2007, 11:33:46 AM »

The boss stages are singing their siren song already!
Given the style of the game the boss fights could be anything from a Giant Metal Monster Crab that you have to defeat by activating a piston to crack that tough shell
It would be too easy to just flip it over and hit it's weak point for massive damage...
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