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Author Topic: Games you wish existed  (Read 593360 times)

Naturegirl1999

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8340 on: June 06, 2020, 10:53:12 am »

This sounds interesting

A game I wish existed would be an MMO where everyone can time travel, and through the process change/create timelines, when you first join, you join an existing timeline. There could be portals (rare) that can take you to a new timeline (or old timeline). Example, if you helped the USSR beat the USA during the Cold War, and find a portal, you’d be able to travel to a timeline where you did something else and caused a revolution in Ukraine instead. But once you travel through a portal to a different timeline, you won’t be able to go back to a timeline you were in before. Players might be able to interact with future/past selves in the same timeline, and through that, create a new timeline. (Think branches, you can travel back towards the trunk of the time tree, or towards the tips of the time tree’s ever growing leaves/new branches, but only portals can take you to branches from a different point)...I can make a picture to try and explain the portal thing better

You can of course travel backwards and forwards in the new timeline too, but you can’t ever go back to timelines you portaled away from. Since this would be an MMO, everyone is always making new timelines.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2020, 11:07:19 am by Naturegirl1999 »
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Reelya

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8341 on: June 06, 2020, 11:08:02 am »

The idea of time-travel games is very interesting. I believe there's at least one time-travel based RTS game.

However, the mechanics of such games are very complex. Also for multi-player games the main limiting factor seems to be that the central time-travel fiction of jumping timelines doesn't really work once you're trying to facilitate multiple players. That's because all players actually exist in this shared external timeline, and trying to justify in a time-travel game why there's this external clock (the real world time) is both complex and heavily limits the "rules" / time-travel "system" you can have in your game world.

So, a multi-player time-travel games requires that all players are effectively godlike entities that actually exist in single external absolute timeframe (the timeframe of the real world). For games that have linear time, this is no problem at all, since time can just go faster or slower in the game depending on what you're trying to depict. But for any sort of "non-linear" time, the fact that we actually exist in real linear time gets in the way. If you have a single player then time travel is no barrier to narrative, since you're effectively Marty McFly jumping back and forth, but with a single linear perspective of time. But if you had, say, someone playing as Marty, and someone playing as Biff, and Biff stays in 1955, Marty suddenly can't hop forward 5 years to see what Biff is doing, since both Biff and Marty actually exist in a sychronized time frame, which is our world.

Yeah, so time-travel game is a great idea. But you can either do a free for all time-travel thing with a single player, or you can do a much more limited type of time travel with multi-player. It's the MMO part that breaks the idea. So, each player could be a "time agent" and time agents exist in "meta-time" or something, which is our world's real time, and they can travel to different places and times and enact events.

Another core problem with time-travel games is one of scope. Games currently have a lot of problem giving meaningful differences when you go "off the rails" even in small ways in their linear narratives. Having a non-linear narrative where you can go back and forward in time would not be practical to create detailed scenarios for. So, you'd have to use procedural generation to generate events / story. The best you're going to do is something like history mode in Dwarf Fortress, but the player can jump around in time and mess things up.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2020, 11:20:13 am by Reelya »
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Skynet

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8342 on: June 06, 2020, 12:22:46 pm »

You might want to look at Millennia: Altered Destinies, a single-player time travel game where you are modifying a single timeline in an attempt to rebuild a galaxy after its destruction by the Micords. The reason it's close to your MMO idea is that they is also another NPC faction that is modifying the timeline (The Hood) as well, and you have to fight against their timeline modifications - I've even watched an LP where The Hood winds up modifying a timeline while the player was in mid-dialogue with one of their proxies over a crisis, destroying the planet they were on centuries ago, and that timeline modification inadvertently terminated their proxy they were talking to.

Millennia uses procedural generation for coming up with its history, and one strategy for dealing with a random crisis is to introduce a minor change in the timeline a century ago, thereby forcing the procedural generation to run again - which may lead to the erasure of the random crisis in question. I call this strategy the "Butterfly Effect tactic".
« Last Edit: June 06, 2020, 12:25:08 pm by Skynet »
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Reelya

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8343 on: June 06, 2020, 12:26:43 pm »

Larry Niven wrote a nice little time-travel series, of which Rainbow Mars is a collection. In his one, there are multiple possible futures, but each specific future also has multiple possible pasts that could have lead to that future. The main character is an agent in a devastated future, and he's tasked with things such as bringing back a horse from their "pre-history" and accidentally brings back a unicorn. That sort of thing. They don't quite catch on that the "past" they're traveling to isn't "the" past, each time it's one of the possible multiverse-pasts for their current timeline, so the odds of actually traveling to the specific past of their world are actually effectively zero.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2020, 12:30:41 pm by Reelya »
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Urist McScoopbeard

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8344 on: June 06, 2020, 12:58:39 pm »

You might want to look at Millennia: Altered Destinies, a single-player time travel game where you are modifying a single timeline in an attempt to rebuild a galaxy after its destruction by the Micords. The reason it's close to your MMO idea is that they is also another NPC faction that is modifying the timeline (The Hood) as well, and you have to fight against their timeline modifications - I've even watched an LP where The Hood winds up modifying a timeline while the player was in mid-dialogue with one of their proxies over a crisis, destroying the planet they were on centuries ago, and that timeline modification inadvertently terminated their proxy they were talking to.

Millennia uses procedural generation for coming up with its history, and one strategy for dealing with a random crisis is to introduce a minor change in the timeline a century ago, thereby forcing the procedural generation to run again - which may lead to the erasure of the random crisis in question. I call this strategy the "Butterfly Effect tactic".

That's pretty lit for a game made in 1995, I'll check it out!
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Reelya

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8345 on: June 06, 2020, 01:20:49 pm »

That's extremely lit for a DOS strategy game that I never heard of despite living through the 1990s and playing a lot of DOS strategy games.

I feel like I've entered a different timeline where someone went back and made that game.

All I can say is that perhaps that one got lost in the shuffle since around then things were shifting towards Windows.

Aoi

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8346 on: June 06, 2020, 02:59:51 pm »

One of the things that makes M:AD kind of awkward is that it's actually entirely possible to paint yourself into a corner through various means as early as selecting seed planet (though, to be honest, you have to be pretty oblivious to screw up that early). And, due to how the game works, you'll never really know if you screwed up until you just can't seem to progress no matter what you do.

And as I recall, the other agent of the Hoods that you have to fight against is actually
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
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Reelya

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8347 on: June 23, 2020, 05:34:26 pm »

I know. Its one of the reasons I dont like MMO's, their precision-engineered balance reduces your choices to very carefully selected options, all your options and paths have already been planned out for you on a whiteboard in a sterile office enviroment somewhere.

But I dont blame the designers for that, its sort of a requirement for multiplayer games because as you said, the players will tend towards the most efficient strategy.

What I said is just what I would like from my POV, something that favoured creativity over victory.

*sigh* There are so few games like that.

That sounds like it would be very hard to design for. For that you need emergent elements, and by their very nature it's almost impossible for devs to actually predict what the outcome of emergent elements will be. It's also quite likely that with emergent elements there will be big swings in play style as new combos and exploits come and go, and this will tend to shed players who can't or won't keep up. So such a game might constantly see its player-base being bottlenecked.

As for the carefully crafted (overly crafted) game balance thing, that's kind of inevitable because of the above considerations. They don't want big swings in player numbers if things like new strategies or builds come and go and wipe the floor with existing characters. They want a steady experience for as many players as possible, i.e. fairly predictable outcomes based on the decisions you make. You shouldn't be destroyed because other players came up with something new and you didn't keep up with the latest strategy guides, because that removes the sense of there being predictable outcomes based on your decisions. The player in a well-designed game MMO or not, should totally be penalized if they play poorly, they shouldn't be penalized because someone else worked out how to royally fuck them over, because that removes player agency, and is the reason for ragequits and bottlenecking of player numbers.

There's also an important balance that's often overlooked. There's internal balance between options, but also the external balance of playing that game vs trying some other game. Just nerfing the too-powerful option can backfire. It does not in fact force those players to choose other options in that game unlike the expectation. They could just choose another game. Hence, the propensity for successful MMOs of proactively preventing the too-powerful strategies from arising in the first place. Allowing the swings back and forth and then nerfing stuff causes you to leak players from both ends.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2020, 05:47:44 pm by Reelya »
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Niveras

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8348 on: July 16, 2020, 07:47:58 am »

Anno with a medieval- or high-fantasy set dressing.

Basic population is your run of the mill tiers of wealthy citizens, but your specialized population are districts of different fantasy archetypes. Witches, wizards, shamans, priests, warlocks, among others. Their labors consist of alchemy, spells, magical rituals and communion with divine/demonic/elemental spirits to manage magical or otherwise ephemeral resources.

Actual gameplay could be pretty much carbon copy of Anno 1404, 2025, 2205, or 1600, it would more or less just look different (though I expect there'd still be some changes to supply chain management to accommodate what makes sense in the setting).

I'd prefer to focus on the interconnected industry of a magical society moreso than niches being filled by singular powerful individuals, so I'd rather not see adventurers per se. However, if you loosened the normal Anno restrictions of island gameplay and instead do something a bit more freeform with a procedural map where AI adventurers pacify the countryside that you later expand into (something across between Factorio for expansion in a flat open map but Anno for scale & supply chain gameplay) it might work.

.

In a similar vein, a Factorio-like automation set in Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, where you're a (singular) contractor in the late-ish game hired to clear fungus from a procedurally-generated region. Since mind worms had some value in the SMAC economy (energy credits), you could probably spin research into applying mind worm carcasses to advance in tech. This could probably even work as a Factorio mod.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2020, 08:00:03 am by Niveras »
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Niveras

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8349 on: July 21, 2020, 05:48:10 am »

Not so much an entire game, but a concept behind a game's world-lore:

An MMO of WoW's production values, where instead of the story being plotted and planned by committee, it is actually loosely played as a competitive 4X game by the devs against each other. Devs choose or or assigned a faction to lead, and trying to "win" the game 4X-wise pushes where and what content they develop in-game that actual players are playing.

This is a bit muddled since players generally hated the idea that first Thrall was Metzen's avatar, or that Sylvanas was now the favored poster boy (or that devs favored the Horde in general). However, the difference is that, even if these characters are mary sues or author expies, they have no competition from other devs. What if Thrall's decisions for the horde had to be justified not as "good content" by a committee, but to actual people who are representatives of the other horde leaders?

If a dev leaves the team, the character dies - could be dramatically to push the plot, like Caine's death, or it could be accidentally for shock value, shaking up the narrative that way.

The basic premise is that the dev team acts like the world is an empire-level tabletop RPG (as opposed to the usual murderhobos), but players are adventures in the world their machinations create.

(I guess the actual idea is to have faction leaders actually act like human beings and react to politics - interpersonal or diplomatic - as they should, not just go along with whatever because that's what the committee wrote.)
« Last Edit: July 21, 2020, 05:51:00 am by Niveras »
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Dunamisdeos

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8350 on: July 25, 2020, 05:07:32 pm »

Ok so Hogwarts Houses, the video game.

That sounds lit.
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LordBaal

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8351 on: July 25, 2020, 09:49:03 pm »

I have been thinking about a hugely insanely detailed grand strategy game. Total War like but with every feature ever in all of them rolled into one and then quite some more stuff like larger strategy map, cities creation and destruction, provinces/regions creation/modification/destruction, two or more layered maps, roads creation/destruction a la civilization, city managment more like a city sim, say banished or foundation like. And Medieval 2 mod flexibility (but enhanced).
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delphonso

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8352 on: July 26, 2020, 05:15:04 am »

I want Kenshi that is:

1. Optimized, so it doesn't melt my PC.
2. Semi-procedurally generated, so it has some replayability. Exploration is the main part of the game, but isn't enjoyable a second time.

Been playing Horizon's Gate and thinking about doing a Let's Play on the forum, but unsure since it has the same issue as Kenshi in that regard.

Urist McScoopbeard

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8353 on: July 26, 2020, 07:31:35 pm »

I have been thinking about a hugely insanely detailed grand strategy game. Total War like but with every feature ever in all of them rolled into one and then quite some more stuff like larger strategy map, cities creation and destruction, provinces/regions creation/modification/destruction, two or more layered maps, roads creation/destruction a la civilization, city managment more like a city sim, say banished or foundation like. And Medieval 2 mod flexibility (but enhanced).

Not quite THAT grand of ambiton, but Manor Lords looks likea  city builder + Total War combined
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LordBaal

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Re: Games you wish existed
« Reply #8354 on: July 26, 2020, 07:59:48 pm »

I have been thinking about a hugely insanely detailed grand strategy game. Total War like but with every feature ever in all of them rolled into one and then quite some more stuff like larger strategy map, cities creation and destruction, provinces/regions creation/modification/destruction, two or more layered maps, roads creation/destruction a la civilization, city managment more like a city sim, say banished or foundation like. And Medieval 2 mod flexibility (but enhanced).

Not quite THAT grand of ambiton, but Manor Lords looks likea  city builder + Total War combined
Yeah, I already got an eye on that. It seems like something half way of what I want. If it has a grand campaign map it would be awesome, but from the look of it, it seems it will be a Stronghold on steroids and way more details.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2020, 08:15:42 pm by LordBaal »
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I'm curious as to how a tank would evolve. Would it climb out of the primordial ooze wiggling it's track-nubs, feeding on smaller jeeps before crawling onto the shore having evolved proper treds?
My ship exploded midflight, but all the shrapnel totally landed on Alpha Centauri before anyone else did.  Bow before me world leaders!
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