The plot and characters are at the core of the game's design. It's a character driven story that is moved by the flaws, passions, instincts and needs of its cast.
Originally, the story for Omnis was set to be a novel, but after spending years being told that my overuse of adjectives made my novels too much of a slog to read, I realised that what I really wanted for it was a visual, interactive medium. The good that came out of this slow 'finding myself' is that Omnis is inspired by music (like that of Saltillo) and by literature (novels like the Bas-Lag series).
This means that the story is original, helped by the fact that my design principle throughout has been to avoid the genre's wearily familiar tropes and its abundance of cliches.
- Exploration, on-map enemies, a side-view battle system that utilises a huge array of custom, fully animated battlers and custom battlebacks.
- Completely original OST, composed by James Wilson (see 'soundtrack' page for samples!)
- Variety of game play types, including:
- Picking pockets.
- Puzzle solving.
- Huge amounts of additional/optional lore to discover.
- Unique/key item collection that will influence how later events unfold.
- Simple, LOS stealth sections.
- Item crafting.
- Navigating by maps to be found in-game.
These have been included sparingly and with careful attention to making sure they fit seamlessly into the story.
- Entirely parallax-mapped, using custom resources built pixel by pixel.
- Completely original sprites, including gestures and other animations to help bring the characters to life.
I wasn't especially interested in revolutionising RPG game play; the mechanics currently featured are a simple array of rpg classics. As I say above, my focus is on telling a story. A few extra features were chosen to complement this focus, however:
- Influence character relationships.
The player will be given numerous opportunities to decide how the protagonists interact with one another, altering later events or opening new scenes and back-story. This is done via a simple system of variables.
- Key items.
Every key item that the player discovers may just be purely functional, but many of them will be relevant and will change how certain scenes or moments of game play unfold. This helps to tie everything together, merging story with game play seamlessly.
Certain pieces of equipment (or weapons and armour) will be useful outside of battle if they are equipped. For example (in the demo...SPOILERS!) if the player discovers the "Leather Gloves" on Sublevel 33 and has them equipped on Orphan, then chances of success are increased during the 'pickpocketing' section on the Solis Maglev.
As things move forward, I plan to start a kickstarter campaign to raise the small amount of funding I need to complete the project. A large piece of said funding would be used to commission custom scripts and implement a few new features:
- A five-character party with:
- A formation system (front row, back row, flanks) that will add an extra dimension to battle strategy and make full use of party roles.
- Custom battle mechanics for each character. Nothing overly complex, but I want each character to have a unique way of fighting:
- Orphan's special knife attacks will be executed via button combos.
- Skyler will be able to devote FP/AP to boosting her defense at the cost of agility and attack power.
- Dillon already has her 'compound crafting'.
- Regan, as the party healer, will 'learn' new techniques, becoming more proficient at curing status ailments the more she does it.
- Nadime uses a bow, and the player will be able to choose where on the scale of 'power vs accuracy' each of his shots lie.
In its current phase, Omnis is limited to what can logically be included in a demo. I wanted to show off as much as I could of the cast and world, but without making the demo seem crowded and stuffed.
In the finished game, the player will visit a wide and diverse range of locations, meet an equally diverse host of characters and overcome enemies and challenges that fit seamlessly into the story.
This is a project with huge ambitions that me and my team are taking very seriously. As we look to move forwards, every ounce of interest and help is vital, so anything you can do to support the project is a huge help.
Above all, though, I hope you enjoy the demo.