Idea for a game

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SomeGuy12 101 Jun 07, 2013 at 18:53

I had an idea for a game in which you play as the leader of a civilization in a ruined world tasked with looking after their people by building houses and leading them to survival by helping them fight monsters and other civilizations. The story is that people found an energy source known as Aetherium that, unknown to humanity, had leaked through from a rift in reality into a dimension called the Aether that had been closed for thousands of years, hence the aetherium being deep underground. Humanity realized this and learned of the power that Aetherium contained and used it as an infinite energy source, as well as harnessing its power by exposing themselves to it and absorbing its energy. Soon, however, an aetherium flood of colossal proportions was predicted to come through the rift when it opened. Humanity prepared for this flood to make them into gods. Instead, they discovered that aetherium in fact simply evolved your body, hence the powers it gave people, and they also found that exposure to large quanitites would turn you into an insane, monstrous Aetherling, and with most of humanity turned into Aetherlings the Earth would have been screwed even if the rift the aetherium came from hadn’t dragged the Earth into it as it closed, warping its spacial relativity so that it would constantly expand and grow combined with the other planets taken in by other rifts. You play a human who was fortunate enough not to die initially largely due to the God Engines, machines which exposed you to a small amount of aetherium to make you stronger and faster, as well as stopping your aging, giving you magical capabilities, turning you into a living battery and letting you come back to life inside the Engine after you died, and now you have to rebuild civilization without letting your God Engine be destroyed. Now that may sound fairly cliche or overused, but here’s the thing: In this game, it is entirely your civilization. You can design all of your units Spore-style, but you can also design buildings and choose the effects they have (to an extent) as well as naming everything, and treating your people however you want. You can play as a regime supporting freedom and technological advancement, or you can play as an oppressive, militaristic empire, it’s all up to you. As well as that, the world, its resources/monsters and the other civilizations are procedurally generated (if we add multiplayer support, there are less randomly generated civilizations depending on the number of other players) so you can keep the same civilization growing forever. There’s going to be a lot of other features including frequent updates, your people evolving and adapting to the environment automatically and the ability to take control of your squads in combat, play it as a standard RTS or set it to autopilot and spawn your hero onto the battlefield. Who would be interested in playing or helping to make a game such as this?

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Reedbeta 167 Jun 07, 2013 at 22:48

@SomeGuy12

I had an idea for a game in which you play as the leader of a civilization in a ruined world…
…now you have to rebuild civilization without letting your God Engine be destroyed.

All that is just backstory, not a game design.
@SomeGuy12

You can design all of your units Spore-style, but you can also design buildings and choose the effects they have (to an extent) as well as naming everything, and treating your people however you want. You can play as a regime supporting freedom and technological advancement, or you can play as an oppressive, militaristic empire, it’s all up to you. As well as that, the world, its resources/monsters and the other civilizations are procedurally generated…your people evolving and adapting to the environment automatically and the ability to take control of your squads in combat, play it as a standard RTS or set it to autopilot and spawn your hero onto the battlefield…

So this game is a Civilization clone, a Spore clone, an architectural modeler, some sort of tactical combat game, and some sort of superhero action game all in one. This concept is far too large to work. Blizzard would take 8 years and spend $500 million to build this game.

I’d advise seeking depth instead of breadth in game design. What that means is, instead of trying to cram a whole bunch of different games and concepts into one, pick just one core game mechanic and think hard, do experiments, etc. about how you could do it really well. What sorts of problems do players run into with this mechanic that make the game less fun or less interesting for them? How could you solve those problems? What sorts of stories can you tell through this mechanic? What sorts of stories don’t work well with this mechanic? What are all the possible variations on this mechanic, and how do they interact with each other? How can players build their skill with the mechanic? How does the experience differ for an unskilled vs a skilled player? These are the kinds of questions that game designers work on.