Fundamentally, I am planning on creating two aspects of play for Web Dungeon:
- Character Play
- Metagame Play
I think these are accurate descriptions, but I may update them after I bone up game design principles. Now, some clarification.
Character play is the normal RPG style play (role playing game, for those unfamiliar with the term) , whereby characters (wizards, knights and so on) get rewarded for various activities. Some examples include:
- Defeating monsters
- Finding treasure and other items
- Exploring dungeons
No surprises there. Character play is what role playing games are all about.
Metagame play is about changing the rules of the game in question. So in my circumstance, it means changing the way characters behave and interact in the dungeon and the parameters of the dungeon world. So this means you have to change aspects of the game itself. So given that fancy definition, some examples should clear things up:
- Designing items such weapons, spells,etc
- Designing monsters
- Designing dungeons and quests
- Defeating monsters in the arena
- Submitting your own designs to the Marketplace. The more popular your designs are with other players, the more points or money the player earns.
One of the aspects of this style of play is that the player is rewarded for making the game better for himself and other players by creating new game elements and content. The arena will lets the player test out strategies or just enjoy a quick fix without spending too much time.
Web Dungeon Features So Far
So here is the current list. No doubt I will have more ideas later, and this list will evolve.
- Dungeon Exploration
- Player vs Monster Arena
- Player vs Player Arena
- Item/Monster/Dungeon Design
- Marketplace (items, monsters, dungeon designs)
Extra Thoughts – A ‘Design An Item’ Interface
The idea here is to provide a graphical way to design new items spells on two dimensional graphs. The value of axes will be limited to ensure balanced game play. The player just drags the ball anywhere in the shaded area to set the desired value. This works with attributes with two dimensions. Single dimension attributes will just use a slider to set the value instead.
A demo of what it might look like:
So the idea is that you drag the red and green dots around in the coloured area to get the desired attributes. The coloured area defines the limits, so that you cannot create unbalanced items which detract from game play. No one should be able to create and use a ‘Nuke from Orbit’ kind of spell as a matter of course. The game should always reflect some tradeoff as shown as above. You get the idea.
I have got a basic dungeon generator and renderer working (Using Dart and Java) and plan to post some demo images of a simple dungeon, plus an explanation on how a user could select and load a dungeon via the browser.