[project1dev] Re: game narrative structure

  • From: Kent Petersen <kentkmp@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: project1dev@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 18 May 2009 13:39:39 -0700

reposted my other questions from earlier

Ah, I think I get what you mean. So these smaller self contained stories
will be like the split story in FF3 or like the acts in Diablo 2. Where it
would be a "full game" with a beginning middle and end with its own
characters and everything. Upon completing one, you will be able to return
to it and replay it. Upon completing the entire game you will unlock a new
mode that takes place 15 years later but the entire world is accessible from
the start, more like Zelda where you can wander around anywhere. Am I right?

When you return to an already beaten world will you be able to use any
characters? Could I use characters I didn't get from that world? If you
return to a world does the story start over or do you return after it
happened more Fallout 2 after you beat the game

Do all the worlds have to be played in order like Diablo 2 or will you get
to choose like in FF3?

On Mon, May 18, 2009 at 12:00 PM, eric drewes <figarus@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Do all the worlds have to be played in order like Diablo 2 or will you get
> to choose like in FF3?
>
> sorry for the delayed response... the chapters will be played in order like
> diablo 2, the free-mode will be like the 2nd half of FF3.
>
>
>
>
> On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 5:40 PM, Matthew Freeland 
> <mattthefiend@xxxxxxxxx>wrote:
>
>> I think we're pretty much in agreement here. Absolutely linear story
>> telling in video games = BAD in large doses.
>>
>> Being able to wander around aimlessly and screwing around in the golden
>> saucer for hours on end is requisite.
>>
>>
>> On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 2:37 PM, Nick Klotz <roracsenshi@xxxxxxxxx>wrote:
>>
>>> I like how Dragon Warrior/Quest 4 does it.
>>>
>>> But being less linear.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 2:54 PM, Kent Petersen <kentkmp@xxxxxxxxx>wrote:
>>>
>>>> Ah, I think I get what you mean. So these smaller self contained stories
>>>> will be like the split story in FF3 or like the acts in Diablo 2. Where it
>>>> would be a "full game" with a beginning middle and end with its own
>>>> characters and everything. Upon completing one, you will be able to return
>>>> to it and replay it. Upon completing the entire game you will unlock a new
>>>> mode that takes place 15 years later but the entire world is accessible 
>>>> from
>>>> the start, more like Zelda where you can wander around anywhere. Am I 
>>>> right?
>>>>
>>>> When you return to an already beaten world will you be able to use any
>>>> characters? Could I use characters I didn't get from that world? If you
>>>> return to a world does the story start over or do you return after it
>>>> happened more Fallout 2 after you beat the game
>>>>
>>>> Do all the worlds have to be played in order like Diablo 2 or will you
>>>> get to choose like in FF3?
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 10:52 AM, eric drewes <figarus@xxxxxxxxx>wrote:
>>>>
>>>>> right, and the short stories would all be self-contained also so there
>>>>> would be a definitive beginning, middle and end.  so there'd be story arcs
>>>>> in the chapter and then an overall arc telling the whole story.  the
>>>>> free-mode would be the aftermath
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 1:19 PM, Chris Riccobono 
>>>>> <crysalim@xxxxxxxxx>wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>> As I understand it, we could basically create levels, and then form a
>>>>>> story around them, and those would tie into a plot altogether.  Am I
>>>>>> correct?
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Also, I like the episodic nature of release idea.  This will let us
>>>>>> concentrate on entire areas as milestones, and help bring our work
>>>>>> together in a more cohesive fashion.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 9:58 AM, eric drewes <figarus@xxxxxxxxx>
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>> > ok, im thinking about it like this... each chapter is like its own
>>>>>> self
>>>>>> > contained story where you play through it... think of like an
>>>>>> expanded
>>>>>> > version of the scenes in ff3 like where Locke has to go to east
>>>>>> figaro and
>>>>>> > delay the soldiers long enough, etc. etc. and he ends up finding
>>>>>> celes and
>>>>>> > rescuing her and has to go in disguise and stuff... like that would
>>>>>> be a
>>>>>> > "chapter" but ours would be longer with a bigger story arc.  there'd
>>>>>> be like
>>>>>> > 5-6 (maybe more, we'd know when we got into them, maybe instead of
>>>>>> 5-6 long
>>>>>> > ones we could have a ton of short ones, like the opera scene in ff3
>>>>>> could be
>>>>>> > an example).  once you beat all the chapters, you would unlock
>>>>>> freemode
>>>>>> > which gives you free reign to explore the entire world and find
>>>>>> adventures
>>>>>> > like in the second half of ff3.
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> > Three key notes to this would be:
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> > you take your hero and recruited party into the chapters and you
>>>>>> could
>>>>>> > replay them (with characters/items that are found IN the chapter not
>>>>>> able to
>>>>>> > be brought in).  this would be cool cuz there's things like the
>>>>>> opera scene
>>>>>> > or the scene where you are sabin/cyan and recruit shadow and go
>>>>>> through the
>>>>>> > enemy camp and then the ghost train that i'd save before hand so i
>>>>>> could
>>>>>> > replay them.  also i picture we could have SOME randomized treasure
>>>>>> ala
>>>>>> > diablo 2 so people could make "runs" this would be a way for people
>>>>>> to grind
>>>>>> > also.  we'd balance it basically by making the levels progressively
>>>>>> more
>>>>>> > challenging and also i view the DIFFICULTY of the game being set
>>>>>> where
>>>>>> > simply leveling won't be enough to destroy levels, even capped out
>>>>>> you'd
>>>>>> > have to be smart and savvy and strategize properly to survive.
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> > the second thing would be that once you finished the chapters you'd
>>>>>> unlock
>>>>>> > freemode which basically gives you the whole world to explore but
>>>>>> it'd be
>>>>>> > 10-15 years in the future (we'd explain it in the final story like
>>>>>> you get
>>>>>> > caught in the null realm and do battle there but when you come out
>>>>>> its 15
>>>>>> > years later) so the world has been changed drastically, monsters,
>>>>>> treasure,
>>>>>> > etc is different, we can have progression of things (like i had in
>>>>>> mind a
>>>>>> > scene where there was a war and an old man and the old man is like
>>>>>> "war is
>>>>>> > so terrible, this place is cursed by all the dead soldiers, i am
>>>>>> going to
>>>>>> > plant a tree for each one so they can find peace" and so when you
>>>>>> revisit
>>>>>> > the place it's a big forest.  children you encounter in the chapters
>>>>>> could
>>>>>> > be adults, etc.  we'd have a ton of mini stories and places to find
>>>>>> and
>>>>>> > explore in the "free mode"
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> > third thing is we could add more stories as mini-expansion packs and
>>>>>> it
>>>>>> > could be episodic in nature
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> > On Sun, May 17, 2009 at 4:32 AM, Kent Petersen <kentkmp@xxxxxxxxx>
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>> >>
>>>>>> >> For the sake of example lets say there are 3 zones. So you play
>>>>>> through
>>>>>> >> the 3 zones in order. After you beat the whole game you can then
>>>>>> run through
>>>>>> >> again on freemode where there would be more things to do but the
>>>>>> same 3
>>>>>> >> zones
>>>>>> >>
>>>>>> >> I'm not sure how I feel about it. I think I need more examples
>>>>>> >>
>>>>>> >> On Sat, May 16, 2009 at 11:02 PM, Matthew Freeland
>>>>>> >> <mattthefiend@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>>>>>> >>>
>>>>>> >>> Gonna... Be... EPIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
>>>>>> >>>
>>>>>> >>> On Sat, May 16, 2009 at 11:00 PM, <figarus@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>>>>>> >>>>
>>>>>> >>>> Ya, I actually have a storyline and town with the
>>>>>> character/zombrero in
>>>>>> >>>> mind for one of the chapters... I really like it and think he'll
>>>>>> be an
>>>>>> >>>> awesome recruitable guy with the guitar hero style attack. I even
>>>>>> talked to
>>>>>> >>>> a musician buddy of mine to write some horn/guitar style mariachi
>>>>>> music in
>>>>>> >>>> preparation :D
>>>>>> >>>>
>>>>>> >>>> Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile
>>>>>> >>>>
>>>>>> >>>> ________________________________
>>>>>> >>>> From: Matthew Freeland
>>>>>> >>>> Date: Sat, 16 May 2009 22:57:57 -0700
>>>>>> >>>> To: <project1dev@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>>>>>> >>>> Subject: [project1dev] Re: game narrative structure
>>>>>> >>>> There has to be some mystical guitar to rule the zombies with, so
>>>>>> it can
>>>>>> >>>> be like Guitar hero, only turn based combat RPG. Bwahahaa!!
>>>>>> >>>>
>>>>>> >>>> On Sat, May 16, 2009 at 10:55 PM, <figarus@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> I will keep some of your ideas in mind... Definitely working the
>>>>>> >>>>> zombrero storyline in... :P
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> ________________________________
>>>>>> >>>>> From: Matthew Freeland
>>>>>> >>>>> Date: Sat, 16 May 2009 22:39:43 -0700
>>>>>> >>>>> To: <project1dev@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>>>>>> >>>>> Subject: [project1dev] Re: game narrative structure
>>>>>> >>>>> Sounds fun to me.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Kinda curious as to how we should set up the entire world
>>>>>> though...
>>>>>> >>>>> I'll just roll with some simple questions to determine where we
>>>>>> start and
>>>>>> >>>>> how to arrange regions. You guys are free to give input at any
>>>>>> time.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> The character, who am I? Why am I here? Where am I going? Why am
>>>>>> I
>>>>>> >>>>> going there? (Where's buttercup?)
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Let's say we're... a reservist soldier, male or female.
>>>>>> Approximately
>>>>>> >>>>> 21 or 22. Old enough to drink beer but not so young that your
>>>>>> hair defies
>>>>>> >>>>> gravity and you have a profoundly emo attitude like in a jRPG.
>>>>>> You're in
>>>>>> >>>>> your home country because you ARE. In a medium sized town big
>>>>>> enough to have
>>>>>> >>>>> the medieval equivalent of a Wal*Mart so there is plenty of
>>>>>> stuff to do
>>>>>> >>>>> around town to get familier with the concept of quest
>>>>>> starting/execution.
>>>>>> >>>>> You fiddle around in town for a long time doing quests, taking
>>>>>> time to learn
>>>>>> >>>>> all the basics of combat getting some levels and adapting to the
>>>>>> game as a
>>>>>> >>>>> whole. Some scary cave monster tried to jack your Zombrero and
>>>>>> you're not
>>>>>> >>>>> pleased about it and you decide for some unknown reason to track
>>>>>> down the
>>>>>> >>>>> scary cave monsters family to exact further vengeance upon them.
>>>>>> Now you're
>>>>>> >>>>> leaving region one which will still be accessible to you if you
>>>>>> want to go
>>>>>> >>>>> back (Preferably through a map screen, no need to fight through
>>>>>> bunches of
>>>>>> >>>>> weaker monsters to get back to earlier places).
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> You're in region 2 now. The story shifts from the learning mode
>>>>>> into a
>>>>>> >>>>> very mild challange as you progress and start to get slightly
>>>>>> more difficult
>>>>>> >>>>> monsters floating around. You quest along in the primary
>>>>>> population center
>>>>>> >>>>> of Region 2 and discover the whereabouts of the super scary cave
>>>>>> monsters
>>>>>> >>>>> super scary cave monster parents... either by questing and
>>>>>> gathering
>>>>>> >>>>> information or Deux ex Machina if you've played through the game
>>>>>> already.
>>>>>> >>>>> You hunt down the cave monster and beat the living crap out of
>>>>>> it. While in
>>>>>> >>>>> the cave and beating up the cave monster, a minor earthquake
>>>>>> forces you to
>>>>>> >>>>> flee a different direction than where you came in, as a path
>>>>>> opens up during
>>>>>> >>>>> the earthquake. You go through the path to find a pretty little
>>>>>> isolated
>>>>>> >>>>> grove in the mountains full of interesting and wonderful
>>>>>> creatures and find
>>>>>> >>>>> a house where some silly hermit person lives. Blah Blah Blah,
>>>>>> quest this, go
>>>>>> >>>>> here, That is Region 3. At this point it's assumed you
>>>>>> understand the
>>>>>> >>>>> mechanics of the game well enough that it won't hold your hand
>>>>>> anymore.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Fastforward a whole lot of nonsense and all the sudden you've
>>>>>> got some
>>>>>> >>>>> real purpose to live, something that is important that your
>>>>>> character do. If
>>>>>> >>>>> nothing else because you're bored, who the hell knows.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> After finally finding a purpose in life you go off and do all
>>>>>> kinds of
>>>>>> >>>>> fun adventuring things and end up finding lots of nifty
>>>>>> companions with
>>>>>> >>>>> nifty abilities and nifty personalities... then after
>>>>>> progressing to this
>>>>>> >>>>> point war breaks out between whole bunches of angry peoples and
>>>>>> you want to
>>>>>> >>>>> go home to your mommy. So you go home, and you get to protect
>>>>>> it. Yay. Now
>>>>>> >>>>> even though you're back home, everything is a whole lot stronger
>>>>>> than it was
>>>>>> >>>>> previously to match your increased strength. You get to defend
>>>>>> your home and
>>>>>> >>>>> then get back to your purpose in life.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Let's call this purpose some arbitrary gathering quest to
>>>>>> collect the 8
>>>>>> >>>>> magical stones of awesomeness. Now that the first few chapters
>>>>>> are done with
>>>>>> >>>>> and you've had ample opportunites to develop your backstory and
>>>>>> that of your
>>>>>> >>>>> buddies, the world gets alot bigger. Now you can rapidly travel
>>>>>> between
>>>>>> >>>>> locations on your continent. Let's say you get a nice little
>>>>>> buggy like in
>>>>>> >>>>> FF7 or a magical carpet or something which opens up the
>>>>>> continent as a whole
>>>>>> >>>>> to you, except maybe a few places for further exploration after
>>>>>> you get
>>>>>> >>>>> better transportation. You cruise around the continent on your
>>>>>> quest for the
>>>>>> >>>>> magical stones of awesome and find a couple on your continent as
>>>>>> well you
>>>>>> >>>>> have tons of nifty quests to do in all the different locations
>>>>>> and lots of
>>>>>> >>>>> monsters to brutalize. Pretty soon after this point you're going
>>>>>> to need a
>>>>>> >>>>> new ride, so you go rough up some wussy steampunk piratey people
>>>>>> and steal
>>>>>> >>>>> their steam powered boat of win to connect to other continents.
>>>>>> Maybe even
>>>>>> >>>>> back to their steam punky island of steampunk (perfect place for
>>>>>> you to
>>>>>> >>>>> design, Elizabeth).
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Now you've gone from small region based exploration, to medium
>>>>>> scale
>>>>>> >>>>> continental exploration, to world exploration at which point the
>>>>>> game is
>>>>>> >>>>> completely open ended. We can even have little sections of the
>>>>>> world that
>>>>>> >>>>> have absolutely no relevence to the story whatsoever, but the
>>>>>> story arc is
>>>>>> >>>>> still important so if you want to you can continue on the
>>>>>> storyline or go
>>>>>> >>>>> exploring newly available continents. So you can go get super
>>>>>> badass and
>>>>>> >>>>> unstoppable and beat the boss at the end of the game who is
>>>>>> horribly easy
>>>>>> >>>>> *Cough, sephiroth, cough* but there are still tons of massive
>>>>>> challenges
>>>>>> >>>>> that await in the rest of the world, with smaller story arcs and
>>>>>> questlines
>>>>>> >>>>> that make you take on big nasty things and get lots of
>>>>>> interesting stuff.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Then you grow old and die.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> Weed through the sarcasm and bad grammer and see if that sounds
>>>>>> >>>>> something like the narrative you had in mind.
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> I hope to avoid as many video game cliches as possible in this
>>>>>> endeavor
>>>>>> >>>>> but for the sake of arguement I had to use them as examples. :P
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> -Wurmz
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>> On Sat, May 16, 2009 at 7:40 PM, <figarus@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>> What do you think about letting the chapters be replayable,
>>>>>> like you
>>>>>> >>>>>> have a character/party that you and you can re-enter any of the
>>>>>> chapters or
>>>>>> >>>>>> the freemode (once unlocked) like... Itd be less one long story
>>>>>> and instead
>>>>>> >>>>>> itd be like independant short that tied together with the same
>>>>>> player...
>>>>>> >>>>>> This is just an idea I was thinking.
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>> Oh and if we went this route the freemode would have a ton of
>>>>>> content
>>>>>> >>>>>> not in the stories...
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>> Just looking for feedback on the concept... It wouldn't affect
>>>>>> this
>>>>>> >>>>>> milestone or the next couple but (:
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>> Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>> ________________________________
>>>>>> >>>>>> From: Kent Petersen
>>>>>> >>>>>> Date: Sat, 16 May 2009 18:37:29 -0700
>>>>>> >>>>>> To: <project1dev@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>>>>>> >>>>>> Subject: [project1dev] Re: game narrative structure
>>>>>> >>>>>> So basically you want to follow a FF3-esque story? First half
>>>>>> very
>>>>>> >>>>>> guided and teaches the player how to play. the second half
>>>>>> would then be
>>>>>> >>>>>> open and leaving it up to the player. I see this working well.
>>>>>> We could have
>>>>>> >>>>>> all the choices made in the first half of the game impact the
>>>>>> second half
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>> On Sat, May 16, 2009 at 6:19 PM, eric drewes <
>>>>>> figarus@xxxxxxxxx>
>>>>>> >>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>> >>>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>>> just wanted to hear what you guys thought about this...
>>>>>> >>>>>>> the idea is an evolution of the "world's" idea and also of the
>>>>>> story
>>>>>> >>>>>>> structure in diablo 2.
>>>>>> >>>>>>> basically... the beginning of the game will be broken up into
>>>>>> >>>>>>> "chapters" - linear storylines ala older final fantasy games
>>>>>> where there is
>>>>>> >>>>>>> a guided progression forward in the storylines, with a
>>>>>> definitive beginning,
>>>>>> >>>>>>> middle and climax.  There will be places to explore, etc but
>>>>>> there is a
>>>>>> >>>>>>> definite story arc for the player to experience.  once you
>>>>>> finish the
>>>>>> >>>>>>> chapter, you move on to the next one with a new area/theme.
>>>>>>  once you beat
>>>>>> >>>>>>> the chapters and the first half of the game, it unlocks
>>>>>> "freemode" which is
>>>>>> >>>>>>> like the world of ruin in ff3 where the entire world is open
>>>>>> for you to
>>>>>> >>>>>>> explore and you discover adventures and storylines in a very
>>>>>> non-linear
>>>>>> >>>>>>> unguided way. The second half of the game will likely be set a
>>>>>> few years in
>>>>>> >>>>>>> the future after the first part is defeated so that we can
>>>>>> change the world
>>>>>> >>>>>>> and add new monsters and caves and villains to fight and
>>>>>> explore.
>>>>>> >>>>>>> what do you guys think?
>>>>>> >>>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>>
>>>>>> >>>>
>>>>>> >>>
>>>>>> >>
>>>>>> >
>>>>>> >
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>
>>>
>>
>

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