Daily Design: Day 56
Daily Design is a series of game concepts devised daily through all of 2016. These are just basic concepts, designed based on three randomly generated words. Today, they are;
Wound, Near and Defeat.
As such, the game I’ve designed today is…
Clemency is a competitive multiplayer game in which players participate in non-lethal duels. As such, killing your opponent results in a loss for the both of you.
As a third-person fighting game, Clemency focuses more on timing, reflexes and decision making than it does on combo memorisation or character matchups. Holding the left trigger causes your character to enter the “Parry Stance”. While in this stance, moving the right stick will move your sword in the same direction – this can be used to block attacks, and if used with skillful timing will deflect the attack and leave your opponent open for attack. A perfectly timed block will also disarm your opponent, forcing them to collect their weapon before they can continue fighting.
Similarly, holding the right trigger will cause your character to enter the “Offensive Stance”, in which the right stick controls attacks. Moving the stick will move your sword in that direction, and pushing it in (R3) results in a thrust.
The duels are non-lethal, which means that killing your opponent causes you both to lose, with the dead player losing extra experience and money (used for cosmetic items). This is designed to stop players from trying to die on purpose if they’re doing badly in the game.
Instead of killing the opponent, players win by “Declaring” their victory. Declarations are made by holding a button down in the center of the arena for a certain amount of time. If your opponent hits you at any time during this it’s cancelled and the declaring player is stunned for a few seconds – progress resets if your declaration is interrupted.
To stop the enemy from interrupting them, players have a few options. The most common is to knock them unconcious – by pressing R1 (or RB), the player switches to the flat edge of their sword until the button is pressed again. Hitting an opponent with the flat edge causes “KO” damage, and if the opponent’s KO bar reaches zero they’re knocked unconcious for a few seconds – usually enough time to declare victory.
However, the flat edge of the blade also causes some issues. Namely, if your sword is flat edge then the opponent’s parries are more severe, causing your blocked attacks to stagger you more severely. Your attacks are also moderately slower.
Another advantage that sharp edge has is that you can “cripple” your opponent. A bladed strike to the arms or legs will cripple that limb for the remainder of the battle. For example, a bladed strike to the leg will cause them to limp – hitting both legs will massively slow down your opponent. Crippling an arm will slow all of their attacks, parries and damage – especially if you hit their dominant arm (which arm is dominant can be toggled at character creation).
Be careful, though, that you don’t kill them. A bladed strike to a crippled limb will sever it, and while this won’t kill your opponent outright it will cause them to bleed out very quickly. Victory can be declared by either player as long as neither has bled out yet, which means that severing a limb imposes a strict time limit on the remainder of the match. Severing a leg causes your opponent to crawl, which can be a good way to buy enough time to win if it happens far enough away from the declaration point.
Pressing L1 (or LB) will cause your character to enter the “Dodge Stance”. Here, pressing the stick causes your character to a do a short dodge in that direction. While riskier than parrying or blocking, a well-timed dodge can leave your opponent unable to defend themselves for a followup attack.
That’s it! Thanks for reading. I’d like to flesh this idea out a little more, and maybe define some mechanics like the penalty for dying and even weapon types, but that’s all I have time for today.