Well, this is Brian Mitsoda's freaking ZRPG! Kickstarter ends in 7 days, get on it! If you support them now, you can get the game at half the price it'd be at release. Pretty sweet deal! Of course, greater funding leads to greater rewards. The goal is already met, the game will be made. BUT, there are lots of stretch goals. We're approaching 200K as of now.
$180,000 - The Weapon Pack [GOAL REACHED MWUAHAHAHAHAHAHA]
$210k - New Areas (Military Base, Regional Airport, County Fair, Mall)
$240k - More Attack Animations, 2 New Allies, 2 New Shelter Upgrades.
$260k - More Character Creation Options, More Zombie Variety, Post-Release Game Modifiers
$300k - The City Area (High risk, high reward), 1 New Ally
$330k - Animals Added, [CYBERNETIC NINJA] Dog Allies [SHOOTING GIANT SPACE LASERS OUT OF THEIR EYES] Added
$360k - Mini-Expansion For Backers After Release (Adds military-grade weapons and zones of control)
Dead State is all about human survival and psychology in the wake of a global disaster. You need allies for security, but they also need food, and that can lead to morale issues. Your goal is to keep the shelter from falling apart, going out into the dead-filled streets and towns looking for food and other supplies, dealing with the much smarter and unpredictable humans, and trying to keep your shelter fence up while improving the conditions inside.
Allies bring issues to you, are assigned jobs, build items, upgrade the shelter and handle crises. On the area map, you can travel to known locations, find random encounters or events, and harvest wild sources of food. On the combat maps, you can explore in real time, find items and supplies, enter turn-based combat with humans or zombies, and sometimes meet other characters or groups.
Definitely, we were inspired by Jagged Alliance and X-Com, and alsoFallout, which was pretty much the game that directly got me into the industry – I applied to Interplay directly after playing it. Our allies can die, same as the characters in any of those games.
I’d say we were also mildly influenced by the base-building in the old PlayStation game Suikoden, and some of the turn-based mechanics/balance of Final Fantasy Tactics. As far as the dialogue goes, I wanted to make sure that the characters were as strong as the dialogue that people associate me with for Bloodlines, but with a deeper morale and political aspect to the management of the many personalities in the shelter.
One of the biggest components of Dead State is the writing. With dozens of characters, item descriptions, and loads of game text, there’s a lot to experience. We’ve got over 10,000 lines of branching dialogue – to give you some perspective, the average screenplay contains about 1000 lines of linear story. For our dialogue, we need to create reactivity for relationships with other allies, the character’s respect for the player, character mood, concerns for events happening in and out of the shelter, and personal requests. As you can imagine, this takes a bit of scripting and time to write, rewrite, and implement – and every ally in the shelter has dozens of nodes of reactivity, including some random events.
We’ve got dozens of potential allies currently, and we’d like to add to that eventually – whether that’s from a stretch goal or post-release support. There’s a lot of dialogue and scripting for each one – around the same amount or more than the most complex Bloodlines characters – so adding them isn’t trivial.
In Dead State, anyone who gets bit turns into a zombie within three days. For some reason, antibiotics will keep the disease at bay, but only if an infected human keeps taking them. Since bites are pretty easy to spot, there’s never any mystery of who is infected, but you better believe keeping around infected people is a contentious position at the shelter. When antibiotics start to run out, you will have to handle the situation, and let’s say the options are not always going to make everyone happy.
No game is going to be completely reactive AI that generates new responses on the fly, but we’re going to provide a lot of reactivity, lots of branching in character arcs, lots of dependencies on the situation and what other allies are there. We don’t think every player is going to find every ally, nor are they going to have every ally alive for all possible scenarios. We have a lot of dependencies that roll a situation into the next ally on the list – for example, if a character is targeting a certain personality type at the shelter for a conflict, if their primary “target” isn’t there, they will go with the next best one. It’s the same with allies imparting information – if you’ve heard about a place from one of them, the other won’t tell you. We have some random elements thrown in on quite a few dependencies too. It’s a lot of scripting, but interaction is one of our key features.
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Edited by Llyranor, 27 June 2012 - 07:45 PM.