EXPERIMENTAL GAME MECHANICS

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Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
I want to throw out an idea I have (also relating to the context we talked about, I'll set it up as soon as this current one about battles is complete).

I wanted to make or help make a game where there is no levels in the normal sense, but instead you have an item called a Flash Orb that you can upgrade to get stronger. It's not an item you use in battle. What the item does is freezes all enemy NPC in their spot, which activates a body snatch system. It allows you to go to one person and take their body. In turn it kills the one NPC, gives you their body, their abilities, their stats, and when you check your items the next time you body snatch, the previous body's items are also copied and placed in your inventory. It also allows you to fight in battle with who you snatched.

To snatch higher level enemies, you must upgrade the Flash orb enough so it can actually freeze them in place. What do you think?

I also felt a story built around it would be cool, where it starts you out running down some stairs and away from...god knows what? Then when you get to the docks, you now know you're being chased by some guards. It then tells you to use the Flash orb, and when you do it does a tutorial about who you are and what you can do. Then you go to one of the guards, take their body, and fight the other guard.

Then you can go to the Transit dock, and the pods will activate since you're using the Guards. It only works if you're a level 1 through level 10 guard, thus plot wise adding in the system to fit, and allowing you to pick your escape route.

It tells you, the player, that you just robbed the family that owns the area you were at, and later explains it was the Master Key to the entire city, and the starting plot being you wish to copy the key, and send it to as many people as you can since they are all treated poorly. You find out the key opens a special door in the dock you first left from in the game, using a unique transit not even a level 10 officer/guard can use, which allows you to travel under the lake they own, into a unique facility. The facility, come to find out, holds clones of you, and you're the only one with the ability to body snatch.

What do you think of the body snatching ability that being the focus of how you fight in the game?
Thiamor, the concept is interesting. My main concern though, is the execution. I'm certain that a system like this will be a pain to create. You're going to have to make tons of enemies just to keep things interesting. Not to mention that the 'body snatching' ability itself isn't going to be easy to make, be it through events or scripts.
I'm not saying that this is impossible, just that this won't be a casual walk in the park.

Good luck!
Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
It could work as a demo, though, where all it has is a few enemies to do it on. That way while the entire thing would be hard, the demo can be fairly entertaining.
You may look at The 3rd Birthday (Parasite Eve 3) or Avenging Spirit for inspiration. Both games let you possess NPCs or enemies and use their arsenal.

Plot-wise it would probably make more sense to make this a stealth/infiltration game. Battles should only be a last resort, otherwise you'd raise suspicion and your current body would be treated as a traitor.
Though there could be special "hunters" that can detect your true self and would chase and attack you.
LockeZ
I'd really like to get rid of LockeZ. His play style is way too unpredictable. He's always like this too. If he ran a country, he'd just kill and imprison people at random until crime stopped.
6003
I definitely the way enjoy this kind of system limits the effectiveness of grinding, and forces the player to use tactics to win fights instead of just letting them grind levels until nothing is challenging any more. However, as written, it doesn't sound like any aspect of the player's character is permanent except the orb's level and your inventory. You will probably want the player to be able to permanently learn something from the bodies he takes over, so that he can create some kind of build that doesn't get completely deleted every ten minutes. Like letting you learn one skill from each enemy if you fight enough battles as that enemy, but maybe you can only hold a certain number of skills maximum.

You might enjoy Soul Shepherd if you like this kind of gameplay idea. Warning: it's hard as fuck. The lead dev has the mindset that Shin Megami Tensei games would be great if they just weren't so easy, resulting in lolz. In that game he lets you get the souls of monsters you defeat, which give you the monster's stats and elemental resistances/weaknesses, and let you learn that monster's skills if you keep using it. Each monster also had a passive skill, which you could obtain by shattering their soul, and equip two at a time. And then later the souls can also be synthed into equipment, because why not. Like your idea, he made it so levels have almost no effect except that you can't equip the souls of monsters that are higher level than you - this part seems to work extremely well.
Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
Right now I started it simple on 2K3 with eventing, or at least as a demo where you end up using the orb, and then going to one of the people and taking their body. I do want to have it though that there needs to be some negative draw backs upon doing this. Like some items may not be good, or sometimes the orb fails and you are thrown into a fight with your normal body, and they get the first strike.

Right now the eventing lets you take one of the Guard's body but also deletes the other guard even though the eventing is both for each individually. Going to see what is up with that and when it's fixed, add more content to the demo, perhaps a few hours worth of gameplay and tutorials.

For the learn a skill thing. Perhaps when using someone's body, your menu is completely different, and it allows you to choose one out of their entire skill list to learn and you can keep using that body until you use the orb again for another snatch, and an inn that you can go into that you can use to return to your normal body. Body snatching will also be used in side quests where that unless you're a specific person you cannot even get access to it.
LockeZ
I'd really like to get rid of LockeZ. His play style is way too unpredictable. He's always like this too. If he ran a country, he'd just kill and imprison people at random until crime stopped.
6003
Hmm, what's the advantage of going back to your original body? It sounds like it doesn't level up and is one of the weakest bodies in the game (since the first enemies need to be worth snatching). Would it be required for stealth while everything else is for battle, or what? From your earlier description I was imagining your original body being permanently abandoned the first time you grabbed a monster - just keep upgrading to stronger and stronger enemies as you encounter them.
Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
I could but the story I had behind it would then fail. The idea is you're the only clone with the ability. The first portion of the game is you rebelling against the city and their "families" who run and own the major portions of the city.

You break in, steal this Skeleton key, mass produce it and hand it out to everyone who is on the low scale of this system, and break into shit. Then you find out it works on the high level transit system which leads to a laboratory and the person behind it is the original source for the clones. The original "copy" so to speak.

I wanted to intertwine the body snatching with the plot, and with side quests.

Then you find out everyone in the city comes from the clones. They are to a great extent, genetically altered to be different people.
LockeZ
I'd really like to get rid of LockeZ. His play style is way too unpredictable. He's always like this too. If he ran a country, he'd just kill and imprison people at random until crime stopped.
6003
Your plot makes sense, I just wonder how the gameplay will work with you going back to your own body. What advantage is there? Presumanly returning to your own body is something you do extremely often, so whatever advantage it gives has to be a major part of the game.
Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
Well I could make it where the final battle allows you to go through all of your transformations in battle, based on the bodies you had snatched, thus increasing your life expectancy that much more, the more bodies you get.

But an advantage to going back to your body each time. We need something unique. What if you cannot heal when outside of your own body, and as said, anything you learn copies over to your actual body. So the more bodies you get, the more skills you get, the more skills your actual body retains.
Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
I also have tweaked the system a tad bit. Now there's a random number generation implemented based on the amount of enemies on a map. 1-10 at most. Each will represent an enemy. The flash orb will pick one of the enemies and if it's number is chosen, that monster coupled with it, flashes to let you know which one you can snatch.

To limit how easy this can be abused, you cannot reuse the flash orb until you switch back to your original body. Leaving a map and coming back will refresh the enemies so you can train obtaining bodies for your own set of skills, and for the final end-game boss to make the battle last longer. Once you die, your body will revive and change to a different body you've snatched, until you have no more.
LockeZ
I'd really like to get rid of LockeZ. His play style is way too unpredictable. He's always like this too. If he ran a country, he'd just kill and imprison people at random until crime stopped.
6003
Not letting the player heal the alternate bodies sounds probably fine.

This system sounds really interesting for bosses that summon minions.
Thiamor
I assure you I'm no where NEAR as STUPID as one might think.
63
I am wanting it to be where there are no bosses in the normal sense minus plot related. Anything else will be super tough, super tough, enemies in which you can snatch from when your orb is a high enough level. I want to add being able to adjust how it works via in-game settings so you can have a choice to get higher level enemies without leveling it up so much, but in return it nerfs the power, as well as a way to upgrade it via gold, or fighting.
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