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<  Design concepts  ~  Game Project-Nature

Mizana
Posted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 12:38 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 04 Feb 2010 Posts: 11 Location: Chillin by the lake
This is a little feedback and show and tell about a game that is my future.

Nature
Nature will be a 3d online multiplayer game. The basic idea, and hook, is...
If you can't survive, you lose.
Your character is one of the many different species that must live and survive with each other. Stunning realism will be painstakingly added pixel by pixel to create the best animations and environment of any MMORPG on the web. Play as a wild horses and deer of many different kinds, play as wolves, mountain lions, and other fierce predators. You will have many needs that must be met; Health, Energy, Food, and Water.
In this game, players are the only prey.
Can you survive as prey in a family herd? Fight off attacking predators? Protect the young generations from being picked off? All in the need to eat and drink?
Can you survive as a hungry predator, roaming the land, finding that perfect herd, with that injured individual? And are you prepared to face its angry friends?
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Control concept:
You will see through your characters eyes, basic movement the usual arrow keys with of course the run feature...you'll need that. Specific controls for every different species. Herbivores such as the deer and horse shall have attacks such as hind kick, strike out(with the front hooves), which could be combined with a rear for intimidation. Wolves and mountain lions will sport attacks such as claw as well as bite, they can also jump onto large prey provided the prey can not shake them off in time.
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Now your probably thinking, 'Wow everyone is going to be a wolf.' True many people would take the wolf and other iconic predators if let free to pick what they wish to be. That is why, when you first create a character, the ONLY thing you will be able to choose is gender. You will only be able to have ONE character as well. This character will be decided what to be and what to look like by a system that, I don't know if it exists but we'll get it, will take in the data of the current populations of players and decide based on that. Example: For every 2 deer, there is one wolf.
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At first, we'll just start out with a basic grassland biome, then as progress is made, expand to other biomes such as tundra, desert, and Savannah. Each new biome will have it's own animal exclusively that live in it. E.g. You will not find an red deer in the desert, you will find Gemsbok and Oryx.

I really don't feel like typing out EVERYTHING so just ask any question that comes to mind :3 You'll really help me by asking questions because it helps me develop the idea...
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Ymedron
Posted: Wed Mar 10, 2010 4:48 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 12 Apr 2008 Posts: 176 Location: Finland
This sounds really interesting and nice... However...

Are you sure the players would want to play it, if they can't choose their species?
I personally get frustated and angry if a certain species in an MMO can only be female (or male), or a certain class can be only female or male, like in Perfect World. Often so much so that I refuse to play the game at all.
Other people might feel the same to be forced to play as an animal they do not like. ESPECIALLY if they only have one character. If a determined player wanted to play a species, s/he would probably try to create a character, if it's not to their liking, they just delete their account/character and try again.
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shojakka
Posted: Thu Mar 11, 2010 11:51 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Nov 2009 Posts: 148 Location: RI, USA (teehee, acronyms)
This sounds awesome, and i wouldn't really mind having my species/ gender chosen randomly, it feels more real cause in reality we can't really decide whether we want to be human male or female (or can we?)
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shojakka
Posted: Thu Mar 11, 2010 11:52 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Nov 2009 Posts: 148 Location: RI, USA (teehee, acronyms)
please tell me it'll be for mac *crosses fingers*
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Mizana
Posted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 5:51 am Reply with quote
Joined: 04 Feb 2010 Posts: 11 Location: Chillin by the lake
I don't know if it'll be for mac yet ^.^ And no there's no humans, completely animals. And I guess if you REALLY don't want to play some animal, there can be a way to have your character reset so you can try again.

If you REALLY want a specific animal, there will be something you can buy to guarantee you get that animal, and choose it's pelt and body shape and possibly breed such as different breeds of horse or deer.
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Ymedron
Posted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 12:34 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 12 Apr 2008 Posts: 176 Location: Finland
Hmm...

I can see there being a huge abundance of a certain species among the buyers (mountain lion, wolf, any predator, because they can fend off others unlike herbivores)

My own suggestion would be to classify animals into tiers like this:

Predator
-Mountain Lion
-Wolf
Large Omnivore
-Bear
Large Herbivore
-Deer
-Moose
Small Herbivore
-Rabbit
-Wood Duck

The game would then say for example 'There are far too many predators at the moment- the ecosystem can't take more.'
or 'The large amounts of herbivores have caused the forest to be less supportive of new ones.' and it would either discourage you from choosing a species (like if you chose one anyway, you would start out with your hunger gauge less full or some stats reduced) or outright forbid you from doing it if the balance is too far off.


*shruggelious*

Changing your looks could be buyable, but choosing your species not. It creates elitism among those who can pay and those who can't, and will give the payers a humongous edge.
Imagine you are good at playing a predator, but you have to start a new character- oopsie, you have to be a deer now? Better pay up or suck it up!

*cough*
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Mizana
Posted: Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:00 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 04 Feb 2010 Posts: 11 Location: Chillin by the lake
Ah yes, there are many problems to be resolved and patched up. I was thinking that Herbivores would have certain perks, like much more health, and not having to put much effort into finding food. They'd have more energy than predators, though short in speed. They have to eat a lot too.

Predators would of course have their own pros and cons too. They have less heath, and energy, but can run fast and do good damage with attacks. They don't have to eat as much, but have to rest more, laying down probably as opposed to herbivores being able to rest just by standing but not doing much more than grazing or something.

I imagine a scene, a pack of wolf players are on the hunt, and they find a fairly sized herd of deer grazing. The the attack begins, the wolves split a deer from the herd, running with it and nipping and biting. It goes on for a little while, but no luck this time, the wolf players eventually run out of energy. The deer runs off on it's larger amount of energy, slightly wounded. One thing I think would've helped the wolves is to have been more aggressive with the attack, do more than nipping and biting or something, run down the deer's health more. Or, maybe take turns running after it by different players conserving energy and make the deer wear out instead. This would promote hunting strategies at least.

I'd also want there to be a point system I guess, the more natural stuff you do, the stronger you get, but doing something too much won't help, but hinder. Doing something over and over would actually make you loose points after awhile, like rubbing on a tree too much, eating too much(that might be rare for Herbivores), drinking too much, maybe even socializing too much(everyone needs alone time). All those would only take effect I guess if someone is doing it excessively, like rubbing their antlers on a tree for more than 5 minutes straight or something. I guess it'd be like you get points for a while, then your get nothing, then points start subtracting. There's also the threat of a predator finding you while your 'grinding', a term used I think to describe doing something over and over and over just to train a skill or get experience.

The more points you gain, the stronger you get. Attacks, offensive or defensive become more effective, but your needs also increase, like you need to eat more or something. But when you die and your character gets restarted and all, your like you were when you started, all your hard work is gone. More incentive to live hm? Well maybe half or 3/4th of your points are gone...

Also, I forgot to put this stuff in first post, there might be 'safe zones', areas where predator and prey can mingle without fear. But it's a maybe now because prey may stick close to safe zones and if predators come after them, they can just run in and be safe. Another problem may be predators waiting just outside the safe zone waiting for prey to come out. That second one may be avoidable by players just leaving for anywhere instead of specific places. First problem may be fixed by having there be no food for quite a ways around the safe zone. Also, in the safe zone, you will not be able to eat, drink, or rest, but your needs will still deteriorate normally, so players will be forced to leave the safe zones to live...

Must do other things so this is it for now!
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shojakka
Posted: Wed Mar 17, 2010 1:37 am Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Nov 2009 Posts: 148 Location: RI, USA (teehee, acronyms)
Simply a suggestion, but instead of making the forest look like a forest and the wolves look like wolves you could stylize them and make them more like a rendition of the actual thing, that way making it more unique and people aren't disappointed when their deer doesn't look like an actual deer. Also, will you be strictly limited to only land creatures, or will there be the option to be a bird of some sort or a frog?
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Mizana
Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:01 am Reply with quote
Joined: 04 Feb 2010 Posts: 11 Location: Chillin by the lake
I was thinking of that Razz It depends how hard it would be to whole second world needed for birds and such. There'd need to be air predators, birds eat bugs a lot too I think, would need to make a way to have bugs available, plus the environment be suitable to be viewed from the air instead of just the ground. I suppose it wouldn't be impossible to add new animals after the base game is completed and running fine, you know?

I was kinda thinking, the ocean could be a great area too with all it's indigenous animals. It would probably limited only to social animals though, but you just know people are going to be want to be sharks.
On second thought, maybe the ocean isn't such a good idea...It's so big and there's not much to do for non-social creatures to do than swim around Razz
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Ymedron
Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 5:19 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 12 Apr 2008 Posts: 176 Location: Finland
I think bugs wouldn't be necessary- they could be treated like grass or plancton. You would just have to find good nodes of bugs to get a bit of your hunger filled- these nodes might run out before you can eat your fill.
Because if you think about it- Nobody wants to play an insect. You could be killed for bulls*t reasons like being hit by a raindrop and drowning in a pond, being crushed by a larger animal's body...

About perks:
Actually herbivores are faster than carnivores. They have to be, because if they were slower carnivores would never have a problem killing all the herbivores and driving them into extinction. (only about half of the hunting attempts of lions actually succeed)
Predators use ambushes to get to the prey before they can build up enough speed, tire them by persistently chasing them even though they can't catch up, or picking on the old, weak and sick.

I think every species should have their own perks- Horses have better than average speed (for a herb.) and a good endurance, though they might trip in forests, gazelles could have a good speed and evasion but bad hp etc.

Hyenas could have an excellent endurance, medium speed and strong attack, while cheetahs would have poor endurance, excellent speed and average attack.


Ocean:
Ocean is actually the best environment for a game like this:
1. The game would require less resources to render the environment, especially in the big blue.
2. The sea is the richest in species- though you might want to concentrate on just one area. Kelp forest or a coral reef are interesting places to start.

You wouldn't need to play every species- a clownfish rarely if ever leaves it's home...
But I can imagine people playing as a cleaning prawn. They could have a minigame of sorts to clean fishes. (and people would come there to get cleaned, because the pests and parasites may just kill a fish in areas where cleaning prawns live.)


I think a system of 'karmarebirth' could solve the playing problem.

A newbie starts in the lowest roster, which has proportionally the largest amount of species. A small fish perhaps.

If they play well and collect a lot of points, they may choose to rebirth. Rebirthing would allow them to start over as an upper roster species, or a new young species of the lower roster. This means that you have to be a really good player to play a shark, and sharks would also be one of the hardest to play along with whales.


As for training skills

Training skills would make you better at those specific skills, instead of netting points. This means, you will get special bonuses from skill-levels.

Take for example:
A wolf-pup digs holes while playing. He gets better at digging holes. (+1 cautiousness, which helps among other things finding good spots to dig.) The skill to dig also makes you better at storing food in these pits. The stored food would last longer the better you were at digging and picking the spot you dig in.

Or another example:
A horse-foal plays around in a meadow, jumping over rocks and logs. Her skills at jumping improve. (+1 dexterity, which among other things makes you trip less) This allows her to jump a bit higher and further.

Other examples:
Bear could get more strenght from tipping over a dead tree.
Horse could get more endurance from running.
Mountain lion could get more dexterity from sneaking around.

Not every species could get upgrades at every stat, because they evolutionally won't really need them.


To prevent grinding, the more you use a skill the lower your stamina goes. When you run out of stamina, you have to rest, and instead of running you have to walk. This means that most of the skill-training could take place as a young animal.
Animals which aren't nurtured gain less skill-ups, but instead start with higher skill-levels. (snake or a tortoise)
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Mizana
Posted: Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:57 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 04 Feb 2010 Posts: 11 Location: Chillin by the lake
That is a great idea! I also notice bears tipping over trees would also benefit horses in their jumping skills Smile Though trees should probably also fall on their own once in awhile in case the bear population isn't tipping trees in the specific area. I don't know about mountain lions stalking around to gain exp, then they'd be stalking all the time, though it could probably be tuned to be slow enough to be painfully boring Razz As well as taking up energy.

A little problem I see though with Karma-rebirth is overpopulation of lower status animals. When, if ever, this game opens, there's going to be a flood of new players, it'd take a while for people to move up the animalic ladder.

Another little thing I feel like mentioning is maybe, like for a deterrent price, there could be unique mythical creatures and stuff! Like dragons of different designs, unicorns, griffins, phoenixes, or maybe just really rare or extinct creatures like Irish elk or saber tooths. Stuff like dragons and Phoenixes that have fiery powers and such, their fire would only be for show, it would not work for life purposes. Griffins, hippogryffs, or anything else with wings would work the same as birds, only they would being land and air creatures at the same time. Hippocampi would work well in the water habitats, sea dragons as well. There can also be completely made up animals too as like a contest thing. People design a creature and send it in, then the best one based on originality or functionality or something is chosen and turned into a special animal, and the person who won gets to be it for free because, well, it's their design.

Other stuff callin again, that's all for now x.x
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Ymedron
Posted: Fri Mar 19, 2010 5:33 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 12 Apr 2008 Posts: 176 Location: Finland
I think adding them to the normal world would not be a good idea, since it's supposed to be a realistic setting.

Maybe adding a server with mythical creatures in it rather than normal creatures could work, but just adding dragons or gryphons into a normal forest: Overkill.

There could be only ONE dragon in the whole forest, because if they are the size they are portrayed in, they wouldn't get enough food.
If it was the size of a deer or a large goat there could be more.

Servers:
A. All different environments in different servers. (Forest server, desert server, kelp-forest server...)
B. Several servers with a full world with different environments. Would require a humongous world to prevent animals from straying too easily into the wrong environment.

Other servers:
Prehistoric world? Would need a lot of research though...
Mystical world - a mix of fantastical and mundane animals, like gryphons in the desert and mountains, dragons in the forests.


Edit: Actually, an environment NEEDS a lot of small animals. Most of the energy carnivores get from their prey goes to waste. This is why a bird for example needs to eat tons of insects per day. Sometimes even more than it weights.

.....................................|Predat.|
......................|--------------Herbivores------------|
|----------------------------------Plants----------------------------------------|
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BearHello
Posted: Sat Mar 20, 2010 7:21 am Reply with quote
Joined: 21 Feb 2010 Posts: 18
Mizana wrote:


If you REALLY want a specific animal, there will be something you can buy to guarantee you get that animal, and choose it's pelt and body shape and possibly breed such as different breeds of horse or deer.


If it was awesome, I'd so pay to be a bear XD
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brit_120684
Posted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:37 am Reply with quote
Joined: 20 Mar 2010 Posts: 41 Location: Canada
if this is really going to happen, wow i would definetly pay. i have alwayswanted a game like this. though dont you think there should be some birds of prey options, like eagles and such?
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atomtengeralattjaro
Posted: Fri Aug 26, 2011 11:51 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 25 Jan 2010 Posts: 15 Location: Hungary
the entire world of warcraft development team of Blizzard should immediately stop what they are doing and start working on more interesting stuff. This, for example.
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