Thursday, June 6, 2013

Hiding

Ages ago I made a post about the idea for a 2D/3D coop platform game. In the game two players share the same game space but they each see it from different viewpoints. They control the movements for the player character together. One player inputs left and right which can be seen in the other players viewport. The other player input up and down again this is only visible in first players view. The combination of co-control and the incomplete view of the game forcing the players to talk or scream to each other to rely the information their co-player lack in their viewpoint to safely navigate through the level.

I keep coming back to ideas for local multiplayer games that utilizes hidden information so I might as well start writing them down.

Semi Coop Maze Runner
An iteration of the 2D/3D coop is a maze-runner game where the two player do not share the same game space but they still control the movement of the player character in the co-players space and not in their own space and share potentially power-ups or downs. 

The top image is player A's screen and the bottom is player B's screen.

In the example above player A sees the screen a the top but her up and down input only affects the player movements on player B's screen seen below and vice versa. So again the players must communicate to get their characters trough the maze without hitting the walls. Picking up or avoiding items is also a combined effort whereas collecting points could be a secret mission for the players making the game semi-cooperative.

Game Mechanic for Non-Color Blind
Another way of hiding information is to play with color. In this mockup all 4 players see the same game space and the same objects are present in the space but each player have their own background color which naturally hides the game object that share that color. 
4 players, same game space, different background color.
Again this could be a collaborative game where the players have to talk to each other to fill in the whole picture. One could also imagine that the players were teamed up in intricate ways making the game competitive.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Playtesting = Game Design

Today I playtested "the mansion game" three times. It's impressive how much changes from one game to the next. Rules are tweaked and in this case the size of the board was almost halved. The result a faster and probably funnier game.

I haven't written the rules down yet. The game is a puzzle game and the mechanics are about movement, shifting the board pieces aka rooms around and moving the character in order to snatch gems. The goal is to be the first to get all the gems in your color. While playing your objective is therefore to rearrange the board so you can move as freely as possible while hopefully limiting your opponents movement.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Two Board Games

Testing the four-player-game with two players
Lately I've been working on making a couple of board games. Well it started with one -a four-player-game but being designed for four I can only playtest when there are four people around with an hour or two to spar. Strangely enough even though I share a flat with four other people it rarely happens that they are here at the same time. So I began developing a second idea that could be playtested with only two people.

To begin with the allure of making a board game is really that it is something I can make on my own (with the brilliant input of playtesters). I find when working on digital games as you can see in the very old previous posts that I get stuck in the scripting part of the process. And then the game mechanic ideas are sidetracked by the fight with the code. Though I actually really like coding I don't seem to be good enough to work my way through to a finish prototype on my own. Board game prototyping could be the way forward. I guess you could just call paper prototyping.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A 2D-3D-co-op platformer

I haven't giving up on the kid game. It's just resting.

In the meantime I've dug up another project. This game idea was born at the Nordic Game Jam and executed as You say Jump? I say How High!. Is a 2D-3D-two-player-co-op platformer where the main focus in the the verbal interaction between the two players playing. Both players control the same character. None of them however have full control. One player sees the character in top view and can move the character up and down. The other player sees the platform from the side and only controls the sideways movement. As both game view are flat 2D view neither of the players have enough information available on their screen to control the character alone. THEY MUST COMMUNICATE!

 This image is suppose to explain the basic game mechanics.

For the game jam we had a crazy set up with one computer and two screens. None of us had touched Unity at that point so we went with bad old flash for developing. It turned out to no ones surprise that it was a difficult task to code what on all accounts except the visuals is a 3D game in a 2D environment. So all in all not the ideal offset for the huge commercial success we all were hoping for ;)

After playing around with iPad I realised how ideal it is for two-player games. So now I'm prototyping the game in Unity.

Monday, October 25, 2010

!++

I let Christoffer be the ++ on the blog. He wrote one post. And then nothing...
So now I have to do something. And so I have. I've made a draft for the graphics for his game.

The style reminds me of drop7 right now but maybe it will get a life of it's own.