Poppy - Game Idea
I had an idea for small game that we could possibly make happen with the guys at Keito, where you control a girl called Poppy (this title might be altered; it's just a working-term), who is adventuring in a ruined world, trying to catch various critters. These critters could then be used as currency, and exchanged for beautiful apparel. The game would be a mix of catch-em-up and dress-up genres, so you'd have action and a goal.
Poppy is aimed at bored people fiddling their phones in the subway, cafe, etc... I want to have this game take place in the Fungivale world, so there might be some familiar creatures roaming about, and maybe even the infamous Muckle might make a cameo somewhere here to tie Poppy into the Fungivale lore.
Poppy is far from ambitious, in fact, I think it can be completed very swiftly, depending on the speed of the scripting duties, considering it would need a unique engine unlike we've built before -- more on that below.
You control Poppy, lively little girl who is lost in world with ruins of olden, often forested and dilapitated. There are signs that an ancient civilization that once dwelled in the area; the ruins are littered with debris and trash, and also occasional treasures that help you catch the critters more efficiently. Also, you could learn magical spells to help your hunt.
Poppy is trying to catch four different kinds of critters (at first, they may come more), each with their own set of AI and behauvior, some more docile than others.
As she collects various critters, they become available as currency, which you can exchange to purchase pretty dresses and other outfits to clothe your little adventurer. This is pretty much the sum of the game experience, though there is much we could add.
There ought to be more to the backstory: who is Poppy? Where did she come from? In order to have magical powers, one has to be a magician of some sort. I imagine Poppy's father to be a wizard prince of some sort, who for some reason has disappeared. His absence would have something to do with the critters you're collecting - perhaps there's a sinister secret hidden to it all?
If we decided to implement some sort of loose plot into the game, your task would be to find clues of your father's whereabouts and/or ultimate fate. For this, Poppy could have her own airship, which I envisioned as something resembling a giant, living teakettle, with which you would travel to exotic places in search of clues. I have a slight dislike towards games that don't have an ending - which you can theoretically play forever. A game really comes alive when there is a line to follow, an arc, and a clear-cut ending which tells you a story, a teaching of some sort.
I want to comprise the adventuring part of the game of a totality of tiles. My experience in this regard has mostly to do with messy RPGMaker tiles, and I believe there is a better way to have a game function with tiling graphics.
First of all, Poppy game screen is viewed from an isometric perspective. There are multiple levels of tile surfaces, some "higher" in the game world than others, and a jump command. Jumping from too high will result in a temporary cooldown, as Poppy gathers herself after a slam onto the ground.
Possibly the game could have an algorithm that creates more of the game world as the player explores deeper into the levels. As I see it, this is one of the main advantages of tiled world versus wholemap worlds. I have a slight objection towards eternally selfspawning maps, though, as I already mentioned that I oppose everlasting games.
A critter or an object (or the player) occupies one tile at a time, and with the interaction key Poppy activates the tile directly in front of her. If there is an object or a critter on that specific tile, then Poppy claims it; simple as that.
More musings later...
(c) Heikki Kuusipalo 2017 - return to skyesken.org