Daily Design: Day 232
Daily Design is a series of game concepts devised daily through all of 2016. These are just basic concepts, designed based on randomly generated words. Today, they are;
Vessel, Castle and Switch.
As such, the game I’ve designed today is…
Earthly Possession is a hybrid of RTS and action games. The player takes the role of a kind of Guardian Spirit of an army, which makes the bird’s eye view of combat diegetic.
The RTS half of the game is fairly traditional, though there’s a much lesser emphasis on base building compared to combat. Rather than being able to build structures anywhere, players have different limitations based on their role (more in a bit).
The game is broken down into two kinds of battle – Attack or Defense. Players are always either attacking or defending a settlement. These range from traditional castles to more fantasy-flavoured areas, like floating cities or ice caverns. The important thing to note is that one side has heavy defences, and the other has to bypass them to capture or destroy something.
If defending, the player has all sorts of defensive options to choose from. These include reinforcing walls, building things like boiling oil or improving parapets. The attackers can invest their money into different kinds of siege weapons, or buying more troops.
The defenders have a set amount of troops, but earn more money over time. Money can only be spent on defensives structures or upgrades. Conversely, the attacking force has a finite amount of money, but it can be used to buy more troops as well as siege equipment.
The defending team wins if the attacking team runs out of troops/money, or if the time limit expires. The attacking team wins if they capture or destroy their objective.
So, the strategic options are relatively lightweight, essentially boiling down to which structures are bought and how much money is used on reinforcements. Tactically, there’s a large focus on sending different kinds of troops to different areas. Sappers are weak, but deal heavy damage to walls – so they should be defending with troops that use shields, for example.
Finally, players are able to possess soldiers in the field and play as them. This empowers that soldier, allowing them to deal heavy damage to enemy troops or structures, but also makes them larger and glowing. Since the enemy player can do the same, you become an obvious target – if one player kills another while possessing, the player that died can’t possess again for a long period of time.
Possession can be cancelled at any time, though it takes a few seconds and can be interrupted by damage. The downside to possession is that you can’t manage your troops or resources while using it. As such, the flow of the game comes down to switching between action and strategy in order to react to your opponent’s choices.
That’s it! Thanks for reading. I’ll be back tomorrow with another quick game concept.