Monday, January 21, 2013

Philippe - Intro and Game Description

I'm Philippe Demontigny, a junior at Williams College majoring in mathematics and dabbling in computer science (as minors do not exist here..) I plan on going to mathematics grad school in pursuit of my dream of becoming a college professor. I'm interested in statistics, game theory, probability, graph theory, and looking forward to delving into more advanced computer science (including algorithms, theory of computation, and perhaps AI). My favorite games include League of Legends, Magic the Gathering, and various strategy games including Go, Civilization, etc. I will be doing the Pro 16 format, and will be coding using Morgan's Codeheart.js.

Theme: Rogue-style zombie shooter
Motivation: Binding of Isaac, Dungeons of Dreadmor, The Walking Dead, Dead Space

Story: You are part of a galactic response team that is sent to exterminate planets that are being overrun with the walking dead. In recent decades a disease that reanimates corpses has spread from planet to planet, wiping out entire populations and races. Your mission is to clear these planets of the disease to make them hospitable for colonization once again.

- Rogue-style motion, where turns pass only as the player takes actions
- One-player versus increasingly large waves of hostile zombies
- Manage ammo, positioning, and range and survive long enough to achieve a high-score

Zombie Info:
- Based off of "the walkers" found in the lore of The Walking Dead; they cannot accumulate damage, only head-shots can kill
- Zombies will hunt anything they see, and escape can only be achieved by ducking behind certain terrain types
- Firing weapons creates a sound that attracts all nearby zombies to the player's position
- Zombies lack intelligent motion, and will attack obstructions rather than walk around them

- A variety of weapons with different attributes, range, etc.
- Weapons are randomly passed to player, making each game feel different and require different tactics to do well
- Randomly-generated maps featuring multiple terrain features that are often the key to survival
- Multiple types of zombies with hidden attributes to encourage replayability as player's learn how to handle the harder levels
- Ammo drops always occur far away from the player, forcing them to move around the map and making camping a poor strategy
- Sound and Sight are important elements that can be used to a player's advantage... or lead them to their death
- Health is hard to regain when lost, and it takes only a few hits to finish off the player, so avoiding direct conflict is a must

Future Development: I hope to continue adding content to this game over the spring semester, and I have a lot of ideas for how to make the game more fun! Here are some of my thoughts:
- Randomly generated events (find a survivor, a house, an outpost, etc.)
- Different planets with differing strategies (less cover, less ammo drops, etc.)
- MORE weapons! I want the weapons to feel powerful and unique
- Different characters who have higher chances to receive certain kinds of items (more melee, more turrets, more traps, etc)

Current Progress:
- I have finished re-writing code I wrote last year that I;m using as a basis for the game. I abstracted a lot, and now it should be easy to introduce new content. I have finished player motion and basic animations, and now I am working on the AI and randomly spawning worlds. Finally I will add ammo drops and balance the rate of spawning new zombies. Once I have the most basic gameplay down, I will start to add content to make the game more random and fun!

NOTE: I am most interested in the mechanics of this game for now, so art is going to be a low-priority for me this week. I want to make sure this game is fun before I invest heavily in it.

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