May 2009


I haven’t been posting as often because I have started working on a game. I’m very excited, and look forward to sharing the outcome, but for now, I’d rather not say anything about it. More news as soon as there is something to report.

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Combination or Cooperative Attacks

I really like Chrono Trigger‘s combination attack system, and I am not alone when I wonder why more games haven’t picked up the torch and implemented their own. Suikoden is the only other mainstream game series  that features cooperative attacks I can think of, although I suppose I could mention the Romancing Saga’s and their Saga offspring too.

It’s even more surprising when considering the games that delve into the relationships between characters, since it would make perfect sense for characters who are friends and fight side to side to adopt and deploy strategies based on teamwork and taking advantage of each other’s strengths. In such a game, the combination attacks would not only become a payoff for working on the relationship aspect of the game, but would also further enhance that sense of ‘friends fighting side by side’.

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Since Psychochild pointed out that the terminology used in the title for this series of posts is erroneous, I am open to suggestions as to what to rename this. For the time being, I’ll keep the same title, to maintain continuity.

Inspiration hits you for 10,000 damage. You have died.

I’ve talked before about inspirations – occasions when a crafter gets the seed of an idea for a new item recipe. World of Warcraft has a couple of systems in place which have similar goals: Discoveries in Alchemy, and Research in Inscription.

Discoveries are relatively simple. While crafting any alchemical concoction, the character has a small chance of spontaneously learning a new recipe. It’s simple, and conjures that ‘Eureka!’ moment pretty well. The concept is that, while the player is levelling their skill or creating items for sale or consumption, they have a chance of gaining a new recipe.

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I really like RPGs. I tend to favour JRPGs more than Western ones, because to a certain extent I am a completionist, and I tend to get too involved in the sidequests of western RPGs, which ends up diluting the experience of the main story line for me. I’m not saying that JRPGs are necessarily better, just that their more linear structure appeals to me more, in general.

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Spent most of the night working through some tutorials in Game Maker 7, I now have a scrolling shooter with a ship that shoots and enemies that blow up. Will write something more meaningful tomorrow, still not completely recovered from our little ordeal earlier this week, but hopefully that will be remedied by tomorrow.

I discussed previously how I believe that asymmetrical co-op games could be the bridge that spans the gap between casual and core gamers. A game where the input of both players is different, and tailored to fit the gamestyle of each, but the results of which all work towards the same goal: the completion of the game. I already had a number of ideas on the subject, seeing the potential of such games as a core gamer and aspiring game designer:

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The second part to Death to Crafting Treadmills! – again, minor editing, for format, spelling and grammar.

Death to Crafting Treadmills – Part II


Last time I delved into the many possibilities that item decay can bring to the crafting aspect of a game. This week we’ll look at the opposite end of the spectrum – the destruction of items.

Players are loathe to destroy items, that much can be gathered from the vehement arguments against item decay. Yet if the incentive is good enough, players can be convinced to destroy items. Two games come to mind, namely World of Warcraft and Horizons: Empire of Istaria.

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