like Trip Hawkins said: A game needs to be simple, hot and deep
Simple because it's easy to learn and play. Hot because it's exciting. Deep because there's always more to discover.
Some basic Concept Rules
- Adding in things that do not improve gameplay is simply a waste of time and resources.
- Gameplay is what games are all about. The story is just there to support the gameplay and should never dictate the actions of the gameplay. Instead, the story is used to guide the player and to explain away certain things like why should I have to ride this hover bike?
- Gameplay still rules supreme over all, and there is nothing to dispute it. Not good graphics, not good story, not anything.
- Well, a choice brings up strategy, and strategy brings up thinking, and thinking about something immediately alerts you to the fact that it is interesting – otherwise why would you be thinking about it? So in a nutshell, choices lead to interesting games.
- A common mistake is to plan a game that will look good in today’s market, and then when the game is finally released a year and a half later, the market has changed, and the game bombs.
- The game has to have a certain elegance and has to be imaginative.
- There should be more story, items, stuff in the game, than you normally can see by playing the game once.
- The story should be integrated into a big universe. And through the story you sometimes touch the universe and you feel enlighted… just to find out later, that you know nothing of the universe and that you are just a doll… hehehe.
- You have to encounter new things all the time.
- Avoid the confusing muddle of numbers that characterizes most RPGs.
- Descriptions of the places you are visiting and of events which happen should be beautiful, mysterious, funny or even dangerous at certain times.
- Text can be funnier than pictures.
- It has to be easy to play, none or not many keyboard commands to learn.
- Replayability is very important - some there has to be some random element in the story/game.
- The game has to be fast paced - e.g. you don't lose time with tutorials and long pre-game videos.
I'd like to comment what I like the most when it comes to gameplay and story. I hope we can use a few of my comments when working on this ticket:
- If we have "missions" never take away the suspense in the briefing. Build surprises into the missions. Don't let them end how the player expects. (Examples for surprises: Traitor in your own army, attack of a new species and so on)
- As stated already in GamePlay: Let the player decide: Some little decisions (the player gets a new weapon/faster ship) and some big ones (alters storyline).
- Build in secrets: The player can find optional submissions during a mission, when he is paying attention to the surrounding.
- The world must be alive. Really alive. Dead places are boring and suck (some missions may lead you to some dead places and it is probably good for the atmosphere when there is a dead place now and then.) There has to be cities and big spaceships with a lot of life in it.
- The GTA style (Player can move freely in the world and do the missions when he wants to do them). May also be a bad idea… story and atmosphere might lack under this style.
- Let the player discover the universe during the whole game. Don't confront the player with everything the universe has in the beginning. The player has to find out and learn about the universe during missions.