The story and the mechanics

Since both Nikolai and I have full time jobs, it´s a little tough to find time to work on the game. But we´re slowly moving forward, and spend most of our evenings talking about the game concept or learning Unity. I have started  on a great tutorial, which explains most of what the different tools in the program do.  I´m also working my way through code academy´s programming-lessons, to get a basic grip on coding. Nikolai will of course be the one doing that part of the work, but it´s helpful to know a bit about the language.

The game concept is starting to get somewhere as well. The main storyline is getting clearer, and we have some new thoughts around the mechanics. Nothing is set in stone yet, but I feel we´re moving in the right direction.

We have talked a lot about it, and come to the conclusion that we don´t want to share the full storyline until the game is done. It has some twists and turns that we would like to be a surprise. But we´ll give you a short summary of the basic plot, and what poor Edgar has to face:

Edgar_Gameconcept-01 Edgar_Gameconcept-02 Edgar_Gameconcept-04 Edgar_Gameconcept-05 Edgar_Gameconcept-06 Edgar_Gameconcept-07 Edgar_Gameconcept-08 Edgar_Gameconcept-09 Edgar_Gameconcept-10

So that´s the plot. Roughly… It´s pretty basic, and gives Edgar a clear motive: Collect parts to fix his girlfriend. It also makes it easy for us to divide the game into chapters – one for each part. In each chapter you will be introduced to new or more advanced mechanics.
It´s  a common story, but the twists makes it special. Just wait.

About the mechanics: This is where we have been struggling. The mechanics has to be based on something that the humans could have used as a weapon against the robots. Something that destroys or manipulates metal. We lost the battle for magnets against Teslagrad and our new friends from Bergen (Go play the demo). So then what? We talked a bit about using the qualities of metal itself. (Melting points, chemical reactions, corrosion, mass….) but it didn´t really fit into the idea of a weapon. So we made a list:

What can destroy a robot:
-Rust
-Acid
-Electricity
-Computer viruses
-Water
-Explosives
-Nature (genetically modified super-nature)
-Lasers
-Heat
-Teleporters (Just teleport them into space. Done deal)
-Wind
-Lava
-Vacuum
-Ice

Acid. Acid is cool. There has been made several games using acid before, we know that… but it fits really well. It could also add something to the story, in terms of the humans making a weapon that not only destroyed the robots – but also, in the end, themselves.

…So we started talking about the possibilities of using acid, and I started sketching:

Edgar_Gameconcept-11 Edgar_Gameconcept-12 Edgar_Gameconcept-13-13 Edgar_Gameconcept-14 Edgar_Gameconcept-15 Edgar_Gameconcept-16 Edgar_Gameconcept-17 Edgar_Gameconcept-18 Edgar_Gameconcept-19 Edgar_Gameconcept-20

If any of you people out there has any thoughts or ideas, please share them with us. Like I said: nothing is set in stone yet.

2 thoughts on “The story and the mechanics

  1. To add to the list of hazards, electromagnets maybe? They can create a magnetic field which can be turned on and off, and can also be reversed 🙂

    As for what humans could have used to battle robots, EMPs come to mind.

  2. I love the story, description and design!

    These are just spin-off thoughts after reading this entry.

    Inspiration;
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WnPrtYUKke8
    http://science.howstuffworks.com/aluminum-foil-in-the-microwave.htm
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FaMWxLCGY0U

    In general, going the science way adds a lot to the basic hero’s journey. Any game you accidentally learn something from (even though it’s not the focus of the quest) gets an extra layer of interesting. <3

    Might be “things that affect metal” could be the enemy, with acids / bases being the general obstacles / helpers, while other ways of enhancing / destroying / changing the properties of the metal(s) act as chapter-villains, building up to something in the end.

    Perhaps the robot changes its properties during the game? Builds himself better, changes parts for other metals so that he can survive through certain environments.

    Also, I don’t know how long the gameplay will be, but one of my favourite games from the 90’s was Mickey Mania, where you had to play through the whole game on five lives. No save points, no cheat codes; if you died, you were revived at the start of that chapter, if you died the fifth time, it was all over. (Even though I played it on the Sega MD, I’d call it Nintendo Hard)

    …Point being, it would be cool if you made it so that his deterioration, if he has it, is “non fixable”. He has to take care of himself throughout the game, or he will only fix his girlfriend to become a complete wreck himself. That way, you can both “win” the game (get to the end, girlfriend is back in one piece, you are scrap metal) and you can win the game (get to the end, girlfriend is back in one piece, you are at full health, both live happily ’till the mechanics give in.)

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