Puzzle Platformer – A boy and his blob – Nintendo Wii
This post was made using my game idea generator. I’m going to be doing “runs” with the idea generator to give you an idea of it’s usage. Today I’ll be using Platform Games as my genre.
- Is the game 2d or 3d?
Game is 2D or 3d – Why? – The mechanics don’t restrict the genre.
- What is the camera perspective?
Camera can be from any perspective except top down 2D – Why? – You would be unable to detect the depth of your characters jumping.
- If 2D, how many 2D plains does the game play on? (ie can you more between foreground/background)
One 2D plain – Why? – Some platformers that are 2.5D allow you to move to the background ie Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze.
- What are the standard controls for that game the way they are?
Usually few buttons – Why? – D-pad/Analogue movement, Bottom or right side face buttons to jump, left side or bottom face buttons to run, extra buttons for special jumps or attacks.
- Is the game randomly generated?
No. – Why? – Levels are carefully tuned by the developers. Interesting concept.
- Is there user created content?
Not usually. – Why? – Some games such as Little Big Planet and Super Mario Maker are but these are built with the level creation as a core mechanic not an extension to the gameplay.
- What tone do these games usually portray?
Usually light hearted – Why? – Platform games are generally aimed at all ages.
- What audience is this genre usually aimed at?
All – Why? – Accessible, simplistic controls.
- How do you usually lose/win the game?
Reach the end of the stage – Why? – Allows the user to save their progress and change to a different setting and increased difficulty.
- What are the limitations of movement and attacks?
Full movement (3D), Side scrolling (2D), Attacks are usually melee in pure platformers.- Why? – Because it causes you to do more jumps to evade enemies in order to get close enough to attack.
- Who/how many people do you control?
Just your own character – Why? – Difficulty in controlling multiple characters that may get stuck, only potential solution is hot swapping characters. For example take the cherry power up from Super Mario 3D World in which characters would fall or get stuck at the bottom of ramps (above)
- Is it multiplayer?
Some games are usually 1-2 player, with recent examples (ie runbow) reaching 8 players – Why? – Overlapping characters can cause a problem alongside camera tracking. (3D world’s can be a little wonky with 4 characters, with move this problem would be heightened unless it was online play, Runbow(above) fixes this problem by having autoscrolling levels.
- How is the game taught to the player?
Some games do not teach the player the controls, others use signs – Why? – It’s less intrusive and the controls are generally pick up and play.
- Does it have a heavy plot?
Not usually – Why? – Again the games are generally pick up and play.
- Is it open world?
Not usually – Why? – I believe there are some examples of this with other genres such as dying light having some platform elements.
- Can the character level up?
Not Usually – Why? – May disturb the jumping controls (ie speed upgrades) and make replaying levels too easy or hard.
- What makes the genre fun?
Boss battles, beating timed or hard levels – Why? – Sense of accomplishment.
Now Pick some mechanics from the existing genre and answers you generated from asking why.
Information Gathered: Platform games generally have pick up and play controls that should avoid being changed so that a larger demographic is familiar with them particularly non gamers. The games have strayed away from open world, randomly generated etc most of the games tend to stick to a linear path. What I didn’t mention was that most platformers tend to have exploration in the form of secrets to add to to the replay value.
What game can we create that challenges the conventions?: We could create a platforming game that has randomly generated jumps and or environments, they would have to stick to an algorithm that is able to correctly distance jumps and hide collectibles.