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-   -   Game Design Challenge: Photographic Interpretation #2 (http://www.gamecareerguide.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3249)

cnutt 12-23-2009 03:04 PM

Game Design Challenge: Photographic Interpretation #2
 
The new challenge is live! It's the second in our series of Photographic Interpretation challenges.

Edit - results are live:
http://gamecareerguide.com/features/...me_design_.php

Thanks all for entering.

Retro 12-23-2009 03:55 PM

Hmmm... even though I'll be out of town the majority of this challenge, I'm already getting some interesting ideas with this one.

Mostly just the idea of a big, Bronze nanny that has to take care of a boy (and vice versa), sort of a Ico-type relationship, but instead of a defenseless girl and a young boy... an indestructible girl and a young boy :D. The statue has a look of pleasant wisdom about her.

We'll see where it leads, but so far I am liking the idea of it being a more puzzle-oriented game. The Nanny can obviously walk through hazardous materials, take damage, lift heavy objects, etc... hmm.

I'll tinker with the idea, but no promises. Like I said, I'll be out of town for the holidays for most of this challenge. Good luck to all the entries, however.

Mech 12-23-2009 04:58 PM

I see Pompeii.

bob 12-24-2009 11:58 AM

This is kinda funny. Not your typical picture to be used in a game design contest. I like how wide-open it is, though.

cnutt 12-24-2009 12:14 PM

Yeah -- I picked something that interested me visually, not something that I thought would be particularly "game-y". Deal with it! =)

bob 12-24-2009 12:57 PM

I think the obvious game is about love between a young boy and an older woman trapped inside a brass statue waiting for his supple lips to grant her freedom. Finally, a game trying to tackle the taboo and terrifying attraction all older women feel to young boys.

Commendable for taking this on, Cnutt.

Retro 12-24-2009 02:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bob (Post 17707)
Finally, a game trying to tackle the taboo and terrifying attraction all older women feel to young boys.

Cougar: The Videogame? :p

I've been thinking a bit, just throwing out some random concepts and seeing where they lead. Arguably most of the concepts take the statue to be sentient, but I've been toying with other ideas. Everything from a reversal of Pinocchio (real boy in a world of robots wants to become a robot) to one really bizarre idea where a city is populated with humans, turned to statues, that the boy can communicate with and must free.

Mostly, I'm trying to avoid my initial approach of having the boy and the statue working together. I can't help but feel that the 'help the character' gameplay has been overdone lately (and Ico nailed it pretty well to begin with right out of the gate, more or less). I'm sure there's a lot of room for that particular mechanic to grow, but I feel like that's the all-too-obvious approach here.

No idea what my submission will be, if I manage to get one together this weekend.

Right now, I am leaning towards a sort of modern-day fantasy (or modern day in an alternative history) where the statues are actually unfortunate victims who ran afoul a villain. The boy serves as a catalyst, speaking to and then playing out the story of each individual, from their perspective, right before they were transformed. It would basically tell a singular story from multiple perspectives over a great period of time (remember, they're statues; they could be centuries old).

I like the idea of having a large narrative broken up into personalized chunks, and I'm kind of toying with the idea of how each statue handles different elements. From a gameplay perspective, each statue's actions and abilities are different. That's been done before too, but one unique element would be the Boy being present regardless of which statue's story you're in.

Dunno. Still tinkering with the idea, what I submit may be completely off from this. Feel free to expand on any of these ideas if you like. The whole "Each Statue's Story" is more of a narrative device than anything gameplay oriented, which makes it kind of a weak approach in my eyes.

bob 12-24-2009 10:23 PM

the reversal of pinocchio idea intrigues me. it could be a metaphor for someone who's exasperated with their differences from the norm and is trying to compromise themselves to fit in. I'm sure I'm not the only person on the forum who's been there before/contemplated it.

Retro 12-24-2009 10:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bob (Post 17713)
the reversal of pinocchio idea intrigues me. it could be a metaphor for someone who's exasperated with their differences from the norm and is trying to compromise themselves to fit in. I'm sure I'm not the only person on the forum who's been there before/contemplated it.

That was my line of reasoning as well; exploring the concept of social acceptance at the cost of one's individuality, giving up what makes us unique in order to fit into a group. In this particular example, the boy (a classic icon of adventurous individualism if ever there was one) is looking to sacrifice his humanity to fit in with a society of machines (which is pretty much as cut-and-dry an example of conformity as you can get).

I've never been one to put social statements (or anything, really) ahead of gameplay; I feel a game has to be playable, or any message you intend to share will be lost. Finding a proper gameplay mechanic that is true to the photo is the key here; remember, we're designing a game, not just creating a setting or establishing character motivation.

I'm definitely tinkering with the ideas though, but so far I haven't hit anything that's worth sharing. I'll keep you up to date, and if you have any input, feel free to share; maybe we can collaborate.

dreamshade 12-28-2009 10:09 PM

Either way, I get the idea that the best entries are going to be the ones that suggest that the statue lady is the "normal" one, and the kid with actual skin is some kind of freak of nature. :V


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