Visual Story Ideas

1) What Did You Witness?

For this idea I was inspired by Paolo’s demonstration in class of creating characters from manipulated simple shapes.  But in this case, the player will be “designing” the character.  The game starts off with a pixelated background of a dark alley, a building, and a vague silhouetted figure.  Then Policeman Bob will show up to inform you that you have just witnessed a crime and need to describe the perp.  Policeman Bob will ask questions relating to the perp’s physical appearance, specifically: lower body type (boxy, round, v-shaped), lower body size (long, squat, proportional), upper body type (boxy, round, v-shaped), upper body size (long, squat, proportional), head shape (oval, rectangular, heart-shaped), head size (long, squat, proportional), gender, skin color, hair color, hair type (curly, straight, wavy), hair length (long, short, shoulder-length), clothing color, and shoe color.  At the end, the player will brought to the police station to identify the perp they described.  The player “wins” if he found identified the correct criminal.

2) Enchanted Wilderness

In this game, the player would be hiking and stumble under an “enchanted” forest with legendary animals.  He then gets to choose which animal he wants to follow and learn about , make friends with, or capture.  The three animals he can follow are a dragon, a unicorn, or a phoenix.  I want each of the three characters to have unexpected qualities: for instance, if the player decides to follow the unicorn, he always views it from the profile, and at the end he sees it head-on and it actually has two horns and is an evil, devil-type character.

  1. From a gameplay aspect I think the second idea has much more potential to be an engaging experience for the player. I’m intrigued by the idea of following an animal around, and I definitely want to see what you come up with. I do see a potential concern where developing three story lines becomes too much to still have substantial depth to each of them, so I would encourage you to complete two of them before you decide on the third. Cool idea!

  2. For idea 1, I’m not really seeing any developed characters in terms of personality/interaction. The idea of ‘designing’ a character by describing them to a policeman is cool, but I’d like you to maybe be able to interact with that character more rather than just discuss them indirectly. Or flesh out the character of Policeman Bob more.

    I like the idea of subverting the stereotypical characteristics of fantasy creatures in #2. I think this idea works slightly better since there would be more dialogue and character interaction.

  3. the first idea is great! i think this would make for a fun easy going game

    i like where you’re going with the second idea more though. so does each character have a personality? one is evil, one is nice? are you following one to get out of the forrest?

  4. First off, whatever your game is, you should draw it all by hand. Those drawings are GREAT. Neither of the gamplay ideas sound especially compelling, but it occurred to me that it would be a lot of fun to combine the two into some sort of magical forest crime spree. I would also encourage you to inject some politics (race, gender, religion, police authority etc.) into the profiling game. Even a simple matching game can say something, and often it’s the simple games that can get a point across more clearly.

  5. But oh man is that a sassy unicorn.

  6. I agree that the first game might be a little simplistic. You don’t seem to have meaningful interactions with either the criminal or the cop, and the game feels more like a puzzle game than a dialogue-based one.

    The second one has a lot of promise, especially if you can deviate from the usual cliches about unicorns and dragons and develop your own mythology. What are the outcomes? What happens if they turn out to be good or evil, and can you influence this?

  7. I agree with Jessica, it would be a good idea to flesh out Policeman Bob a bit more so that the interactions to create the character would be more interesting and not just creating a character. Also maybe you can explore what happened to you. You are at this scene, you don’t know what happened to you, you must be in shock. You could explore that a little bit too.

    The second one would also be interesting and I like the surprise endings. What would you do with the creatures? do you just capture them or not? i am confused about what exactly the player does between the choosing of the creature and the end.

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