Hi all, about a week ago I was scrolling through the games on yoyogames.com and I couldn't believe how many zombie based games I saw. Something you should know about me is that I am a HUGE zombie fan. I actually can get into a serious conversation for hours with someone if the topic is on zombies. So being the zombie fan that I am, it really disappointed me when I played the games that I saw and most of them seriously sucked and were simple zombie shooter games. In my opinion, people don't even play zombie games anymore because they are sick of the never ending amount of non creative and very unoriginal zombie games out there, I know I am. After a little inspiration, I decided it was time to make a stand and bring back the true zombie survival theme you feel when playing games such as Dead Frontier.
If you want to know about the mechanics of the game, check out 1, but if you want to read the game concept, check out 2 first, but be sure to go back to 1. It's cool.
1. Now that you know my motivation, let me give you some information about my ideas for game play.
Unlike most zombie games you see out there that focus on killing zombies, my game will heavily rely on the survival aspect and the story aspect, rather than the action aspect. The game will follow the lives of five randomly generated (or player made) characters. Each character is writing a journal about his or her experiences during the apocalypse, they will talk about how they survived, what big choices they made, if they found new survivors, if they had a close call, if they learned something new, all of which will be controlled by the player. The five characters who the character controls will not be in a group and will not know of each others existence until the player brings them together, this of course will not be mandatory. At the end of each day in the game, the game engine will give show you your current character's journal entry of that day, then will switch characters to the next character in line and start the day over again until the fifth character survives the night. If any of the characters dies, then a new one is generated (Appearance, name, occupation, all the journal entries up until that day, etc) or player made (The journal entries will always be randomly generated). If you think that the game will be slow paced or text based, I can see why you think that, but it actually will be a pretty thrilling top down shooter. Let me explain how I will do this. Since the start of the game, the player will have a current objective that he chooses himself and then must fulfill. For example, Lets say bob is a cop and gets a dispatch call to a home. Your current objective will be to drive down to the house, then when bob arrives at the home, he sees a crazed man trying to smash his closet in, and hears screaming coming from the closet. The game pauses and a message pops up "How do you react to this situation? do you take out your gun and tell the man to stop, or do you try to take him out with your night stick?" if the player chose the second option, your objective will be to take the crazed man out using melee weapons, killing him with your gun will fail your mission and will lead to you not getting experience, but if you manage to take him out, bob will gain experience. There will literally be thousands of choices in the game, many will be based on the main story line, but most will be randomly generated. The major choices will change the story line, the minor choices will just affect the level of the character.
2. Now that you know the mechanics of the game, let me give you some information on the story and the concept of the game.
Many people think that I truly believe that the zombie apocalypse will happen, but lets be reasonable, the dead coming back to life? That's a little absurd, so when I was coming up with the idea for the game, I tried to have everything be believable. One of my main goals is to make the player believe that this could actually happen. The reason I am labeling this game as a "Zombie Game" is because it is about surviving in a world filled with ravaging mindless cannibals trying to eat you, but rest assured, these guys are NOT undead. All of their body functions still work, their heart beats, they need to eat to get energy, they need to breathe, and they can reproduce, but all of these body functions are completely altered, almost like the host of the virus forgot how to do all these things and had to adjust to a new way of doing everything. Their heart rates severely increase along with their rate of respiration. Their muscularity system changes, they now use all the power that they have, but it deteriorates quickly, which is why they constantly need to feed on meat, they need a serious amount of protein to survive, but everything still seems to work similarly to the way it worked before, all but their brain functions. They forgot all their memories, they forgot how to communicate, they developed animal instincts, and animal thoughts. It's literally evolution reversed, but without any new generations. However, even though these people are technically not zombies, they still transfer the virus in a similar way. In order to get infected, a healthy person has to receive an infected persons bodily fluids into their blood stream. A bite, is the typical way of transmitting the disease, but any other transfer of body fluids works just as good. The primary objective that the player has is basically to rebuild society (or at least New York City, where the game takes place). He will live in a secure shelter with his survival group (it is composed of whatever npc your characters saved) He will be recieving tasks from his survivors, he will go on looting trips with them, he will secure areas with them etc.
The player starts off with no secure areas, he then has to find a secure shelter and make it even more secure by barricading it, setting up alarm systems, traps, all that good stuff. Once he does that, and kills all the zombies on the inside, he has secured the shelter. Lets say for example that that the player secured an apartment building, or at least one floor of the building. He then can set up "Work shops" in the apartments. One apartment will serve as a sleeping quarters for his crew, another apartment will serve as a laboratory, or a hospital, or an armory, or a storage facility, or a prison, or maybe an indoor farm. (Remember, this is a game so even though this takes place in New York, no building will have more than 10 floors, and no floor will have more than 6 apartments. Also not all buildings can be secured.) Each sleeping quarters can hold only a limited amount of people depending on the size of the apartment. It will be something that makes sense to game play, like 2 - 6 people per apartment, so if you don't have any available sleeping quarters, no new survivors will appear to you. Only a survivor who is a scientist can work and gain information in the lab. Only someone who is a doctor can work and heal in the hospital, if your character is one of these occupations, then you can work in your facilities from the moment you build one of them. However, usually you will have npc doing that stuff, they will frequently send you and a looting party on missions to get food, supplies, new test subjects whether they are healthy rats or infected humans, survivors who reported themselves on the radio you found, etc. The game will inevitably end in five game years, so there really is no way you can loose the game, but the point is to try to have the least amount of deaths possible. When the game is over the player will have the option to continue playing the game forever, but there will be no more major story line stuff, although there will be plenty of extras that the player can unlock after the fifth year, such as awesome weapons, and stuff.
There is OBVIOUSLY a lot that I haven't thought up of yet, for example I haven't even thought up of the cause for the virus, but i'm taking my time with that one, I want it to be as original as possible. Not a bio weapon, not an alien invasion thing, not an accidental experiment, not a cure for cancer. And I realize that this may sound a lot like that movie "I am Legend" with Will Smith, and I know! I know! its an accident, i'm trying here. Lol.
The player will have the following levels, I divided them into Logic levels and Physical levels
Logic skills (Many of the replies to certain situations will be based on this) -Combat (The player will have a better understanding of how to fight the infected and will develop new attacks as this skill heightens) -Science (Player learns new biological stuff, including health related stuff, and working on a cure for the virus) -Mechanical (Player learns to build and fix new things) -Negotiation (Player learns to deal with ally and enemy healthy humans more effectively, he becomes a better leader)
Physical skills (Skills that improve the chance of survival of the player) -Agility (affects your energy, mele attack rate, walking/running speed,etc.) -Constitution (affects mele damage, what stuff you can carry, max health,etc.) -Firearm (affects, accuracy, reload speed, etc.)
This is really all I can think of on the spot.
Please, any feed back would rock!, even if you just send me a "hi, nice idea" or a "hi, bad idea"
Thanks so much for taking the time to read all of this, I really appreciate it.