Looking for somone to come on board for an adventure to make an adventure
The Game is a JRPG Style/Inspired cute, but adult themed low-fi/low res 2D pixel art cyberpunk(ish) adventure.
Some Concept Images are below the text of the game and project idea.
The Setting and Scenario
The game will be set in an alternate reality, a typical metropolis with a slight cyberpunk feel. Mixing influences and reference from old, modern and futuristic. Although the game appears at first sight to be cute and cartoonish, the underlying tone of the game will have an adult theme, perhaps a mix of Futurama and Family guy + others types of humor. Certain aspects to this alternate reality I would like to keep a secret until release, however although I have not formed any specific story lines, I have formed a strong scenario in which creating stories and quests should be easy. In effect I am creating a world, a city for stories to be overlaid on top of rather then creating a story then creating a world to go with it.
Of course I do have many ideas for stories and quests, but the point is that anyone coming on board this project has a lot of freedom in working with me to produce good stories. I will strive to make the world as rich and varied as possible so creating stories to take place in it with its characters (or new story specific characters or locations) will be really fun.
The game will feature a JRPG style perspective, looking top down and slightly to the front with flat perspective (orthogonal). I am still learning how to work in this very tricky style so I will improve my scale/depth consistency over time. Even still because of this very specific perspective many "compromises" in depth, scale consistency .. etc are representative in style to how they would be in any realistic style, which is quite common in JRPG style games and other genres.
The game should be an open city environment / free roam and I will strive to make sure that most (if not all) buildings will be enter-able which is a big component to open world games that really frustrates me. Seeing interesting shops/buildings.. etc that are just teasing you until you realize its just external decoration.
The game will have two main types of areas of gameplay, that is the external (the city outside) and internal areas (inside buildings)... From a scale point of view the external city is a sort of map like representation of the game world, while the internal are in most cases more then double the size of what the buildings appear to be on the outside.
Player can store certain items that they can pick up in their inventory. Player can only hold certain amount of items (or by weight) at any given time. Players inventory may be up-gradable to carry more.
Simple Hacking Mechanic:
Player will often find locked doors, containers,..etc and in some cases they will be able to play a hacking puzzle mini game in order to access the locked item.
Although the emphasis of this game is not on fighting, there will be occasional instances of a fight being triggered between the player and one or more NPC's. This fighting mechanic has to be simple.
A light survival mechanic such as the three standard ones, hunger, thirst and exhaustion could be implemented to take advantage of the richness of the variety of items i envisage. Other additional survival mechanics such as levels of toxicity in the body (from drugs, stale food.. etc), Sexual desire, (a requirement to visit brothels (male or female/or bot depending on player character choice ), Money Management (the requirement to not run out of money)... and other possible additional survival mechanics.
Shop Lifting Mechanic:
Since the world will be so rich with unique items in stores/markets/malls..etc there could be an interesting shoplifting mini game/mechanic. As an example for a certain quest the player has to find a specific item from a specific store, steal it without being caught, and return the item to whoever set the quest. This mechanic could also be implemented into the survival mechanic. Stores, depending on scale or how well off they are, will have camera security systems / guards which will have cones of sight, Player has to avoid the sigh cones or not look suspicious in the first place. Additional mechanics could also feature a system whereby if items have security tags the player has to enter a hacking mini game to unlock the tag from the item before they are detected by the movement of security cameras, guards or staff.
Player Character Customization
At the start of the game the player will be able to create their own character using a simple system of head/torso+arms/legs+feet. And while progressing through the game be able to buy new tops (torso+arms), bottoms (legs+feet) and Head ware.
The Character designs as featured in the concept images I made a while ago and perhaps might not suite the game (might be a bit too childish looking) are fine for scale reference, but ideally to have someone make better characters to suit the game would be really great. If I can not get anyone to work with new characters then I will use the ones I am using now but improve them a bit. There will be 100`s of different looking ones not just the 8 or so i made for the concepts.
Assuming there is a money system to the game, the player can buy and sell items from different traders and shops, but keeping it very simple.
Every Unique Item such as posters, shop produce, drinks, NPC's ..etc will have their own description and be integrated into the games achievement system. Each time a player finds a new item such as a new poster/advert then have not seen before, and assuming they click on its description, it will then be visible in the players wikipad. On collecting certain amounts or finding special items achievements will be awarded.
This wikipad system (tablet software) will be similar to style of the Hitch Hikers Guide information guide.
The game might have a day/night cycle which would be nice to integrate into mechanics such as certain shops being only open at certain times of day..etc however if there is no day/night cycle the game will be set in a dark/murky/smoggy twilight(ish)/night(ish) sort of atmosphere.
Possible Method of Releasing the Game
An idea is to release this game in episodes. This means I can prioritize with building the external city with a few internals for various buildings that fit into a first episode story. So when the outside city is complete there may be a 1st episode release, giving the player a specific story/side quests to take advantage of the completed internals for buildings. The player can still free roam the city but buildings (internals) will be unlocked in subsequent episodes as they are developed. This might entice players to keep updating their game to see new internals, stories, quests, characters, items.. etc, while the core game mechanics don't have to change that much.
Doing it this way also means that if the game is not very successful one release of episode 1 or 2, then development can stop or prioritize on other areas, so much of the work on internals and other things wont have to be committed to.
This method can also be used to strategize a crowd funding campaign centered around tiers of development stages with internals areas of the city.
While on the subject of crowd funding I have specifically made certain types of items customizable (as with posted previous examples), so this can be used to integrate into the funding tier to offer backers their own customized content in the game.
Although the game is striving to be a low res pixel art JRPG style GTA / Retro City Rampage, unlike those games this game will not feature the ability for the player to drive vehicles. There are a number of reasons for this choice, some technical, but the main reason is I feel in open world / free roam world games as soon as you get into something like a car the game world suddenly "feels" a lot smaller. There will be reasons (in the game scenario) why the player cannot drive cars. There will be a fast travel method as mentioned before in this post.
Here are some of the areas I have been working on, It is important to note that many of the concepts shows are at various stages of completion, in particular the main external "city" section image which is at a 40 to 50% stage of completion. Building/ground shadows (such as the alley way/market area) have not been applied to other areas, many of the external buildings are only partially detailed a few are still primitive colored boxes,, plus many other detailing to be done.
Here are 3 examples of "small internals" (Up-scaled x2)
A little more information on Disco X (Forgot to mention the bubble tubes will be animated too)
10 Min timelapse of most of the work on Disco X Internal (Don't forget to choose 720p in the youtube settings)
Very bad/crude test of what the lasers "might" look like flashing, but ideally they will be moving/sweeping , changing color perhaps shape too.
One of my general sprite sheets:
Up-scaled to 200% url link here: Fractalscapes.net
And the Progress on the city itself, note this is only a small section of the city that can be used to prototype, and is only at a 40% to 50% state of completion. Also bare in mind that the city ideally would have many NPC's walking about, traffic featuring many types of hover vehicles, animated flickering neon lights, and other animated features, and perhaps overlay effects such as mist/fog slowly rolling by...etc. I mainly produced this image to test the mood/lighting general atmosphere I am trying to achieve but I thought to show my progress anyway so you folks can get a clearly idea of where I am going with this idea.
300% up-scaled version link here: Fractalscapes.net
Showing the raw (unfiltered) pixel art stage (in case of day night/cycles), the post processing layers and the final look, I have tried to make everything in this project so far easy to modify so in this case any new work on the raw pixel art stage can simply be dropped under any post process layers with minimal modifications to the post process work itself. And of course in general at the source any of the work I have made is broken in to layers so its easy and convenient to modify on the fly and separate for in engine assets : Fractalscapes.net
If you can try use your imaginations and imagine a city of this sort of scale ( Retrocityrampage.com ) but with the detailing and more intricate layout and stronger atmosphere of what I am doing.
And finally just two HD "teaser" minimal/abstract style desktop wallpapers related to the project featuring only a few of the possible 100`s of consumer type items that can be found in the game if anyone likes, light and dark theme, as an example of promotional material.
To be clear, right now I can not offer anyone coming on board any sort of money. This project will entirely depend on sales and/or amount of possible crowd funding we can get prior to release.
I am offering people the opportunity to get involved in something that I think if done right could result in good reward for everyone directly involved with its development. Right now, or at least until a basic prototype is made I would like to treat this project as a casual thing, but with serious and mature intent. After a prototype is produced we can possibly present it to the public as a concept, and if the feedback is strongly positive we can drive ahead with the project proper and form a more formal method of working together, contracts, payment agreements.. etc.
What I am most certainly looking for is a coder/scripter.. in effect you will be taking the lead with the technical aspects of the game so we go with whatever engine you are most happy with, assuming it has some basic editor so I or other designers can directly modify or work on such things as post processing, the more visual parameters the engine has the better for me. but its not just "some coder" I am looking for, its a project partner for an experience also.
Asides from the obvious code help that will be need to make this game a tangible reality, I could use some help with forming some good stories/quests and perhaps puzzles. I could in theory cover those myself but I would really like to focus my time on creating the world, making it as intricate and interesting as I can, , general game design and art direction, game presentation and promotion , perhaps sound and music... and perhaps down the line someone to help with graphics to lighten my load if things get a bit too much for me in context to hitting some time frame for release.
There are other aspects to this idea that I will not reveal until release or whoever is working directly on the project with me.
Well I hope I got the gist of my idea across, I think because of the nature of this game it should be really fun to work on and varied, there is a lot of freedom here. If anyone has any serious interest in trying to see where we can bring this it would be wonderful, either reply to this thread or PM.
Take it easy folks.
Edited by: Fractalscapes