The Final Daily Design: Day 366
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;
Classroom, Neglect and Language.
As such, the game I’ve designed today is…
Brief is an asymmetrical multiplayer cooperative game about a terrible military briefing and the subsequent – and equally terrible – military operation.
Players begin each game in a team, either pre-formed or grouped with strangers. From this team, one player is randomly selected to be the Commanding Officer, and it’s their job to brief the others on their objectives.
The Commanding Officer (or CO) is given all the information they need. They’ll be given a detailed description of the objectives, the area that the mission is taking place in, the evacuation point and enemy details. It’s their job to convey this to the rest of the team before the mission begins – unfortunately, they can only do so by drawing information on a whiteboard.
Once the briefing begins, the mission timer starts to tick down, so the longer that the team spends in briefing the less time they have to complete the actual mission. Each team member can designate themselves as ready at any time, and when more than half the team is ready the operation begins.
The actual operation takes place as a first-person shooter in a procedurally generated environment. Objectives and enemies are randomised, too – sometimes it may be hostage extraction, sometimes it’s bomb disposal, sometimes it’s simply clearing out the area. There are other factors, such as certain NPCs in the area that are friendly, and so this should all be communicated in the briefing. Players can’t actually see the time limit counter, either – though they can set a timer on their in-game watch at any time, even in the briefing. If the CO is good at their job, this means that most players should have a rough idea of the time limit.
During the operation, the CO controls security cameras in the area and can choose to relay the feed of one to the team’s HUD at any time (it takes up a small space in the corner). The idea is to keep the CO active by having them show the most important areas at any given time. They can also view the map from several angles and see how the team is performing, as well as watch objectives get ticked off in real time.
The most obvious problem with the idea is that players can communicate via voice chat outside of the game, which undermines the whole idea. I’m not personally worried – I think the game would be a lot less fun, but if players want to play that way, that’s their prerogative. I can’t see an unlock system being especially fun if it was based on performance, though, as it would massively encourage this kind of “cheating”. New weapons or cosmetic options could be unlocked via play time, though.
That’s it! Thanks a lot for reading. That was the final Daily Design! A special thanks to those of you who have followed along, especially to those who have taken the time to provide feedback. Thanks to those who have liked most of the posts throughout the year (you know who you are!).
I’ll be writing a post-mortem in a few hours that goes over what I feel did and didn’t work about the whole year of writing. I’m largely relieved, but that’s massively offset by the fact that I plan to do something similar (though different) through 2017.
Thanks again! Enjoy the new year.