I’ve decided to capture many of my random game ideas and post them for all the public to see… you see, for me, I’ve got about a billion game ideas at any time, and maybe 4-5 side projects in progress all at once. This is a recipe for disaster! With being mentally tugged in every direction, I fear that may lead to never actually completing a thing!
So enter Game Ideas.
The concept here is to share and discuss these wonderful ideas. It’s my hope that getting them out of my head and onto the internetosphere is a cathartic exercise - akin to the burning of sentimental items in a metal trash can after a gross break-up. Maybe they’ll inspire someone… maybe someone else will inspire me to take a second look at one of the ideas; maybe even inspired to take one to full production despite my current projects (at the time).
- Deck Life
- Pirate Tiles
- Remember Your Training!
- Shopping Spree
Dungeonomics is a bit of a “role reversal” economic sim in the clothes of a turn-based roguelike. You, a renting tenant of the resident dungeon lord of the local dungeon, set out each day to find the most profitable location in the dungeon to sell his goods.
As adventurers enter the dungeon, they’ll begin to follow familiar paths which the you can use to determine a great stop to setup shop - because one shop is setup, you can’t move it for the rest of the day. It’s hard work getting everything setup and breaking it down, after all, do YOU want to do that multiple times per day?
At the end of the day, after the dungeon has closed and the adventurers have gone home, you may then moves around the dungeon freely, trading and talking with your colleagues in the dungeon: slimes, orcs, bats, spiders… the works. But these peers also have been watching, and depending on how you’ve helped the adventures, they may not have a very favorable opinion of you.
Once you’ve done this day in, day out for a week, it’s time to pay up the privilege of using the dungeon as your shop… and if you can’t afford it, well, your soul looks like a great alternate payment.
- Top Down, 2D Roguelike
- Single-Screen scenes
- Dungeon Floors
- Stock your shop with items gathered during gameplay
- Trade with Dungeon Inhabitants
- Gather ( Mine / Fish )
- Craft new items at your workshop
- Walk around the dungeon with your possessions on the end of a stick
The Dungeon Inhabitants form into “Factions” which are basically social cliques from highschool. The player gains a reputation with the various factions which is affected by the business they do with other factions or with the specific classes of heroes the player does business with.
For example, if you’re selling lots of items to Clerics, the “Undead” faction is not your biggest fan.
a tiny deck-building game about a farmer
HayStacks is a lo-fi 2D side-view farming game, controlled by playing cards from a deck that is built upon each day as a result of the day’s actions.
Using cards, the player decides what crops to grow and animals to raise on the limited plot of land they begin with. As the cards are played, the player is able to add more to their deck as a result of the ‘experience’ of working on the farm, ultimately crafting a deck best suited for working their own personal farm.
Rather than real-time, each card played progresses the day’s clock further into the day, with the player finally choosing to retire before passing out for the day.
HayStack’s gameplay is divided into “days.” At the beginning of the day, the player has a chance to adjust their deck for the day.
The player’s farm consists of 3 or 4 card slots, lined up horizontally, representing the plots of land the player has available to use.
I’ve considered two possibilities for how the player’s initial deck is setup:
- Their initial deck consists of a starting seed card or two, a till card, a plow card, and a water card.
- Their initial deck consists of till, plow, water, since these are default actions, and then has X amount of points to spend at ‘town’ for their initial resources.
- These Resources may be limited as to not allow players to dig themselves into a corner, so-to-speak.
The Player also has a “Home Stead” area - it represents the interior of their home. In here, they’re able to build and cook using resources collected, but initially, it’s bare.. representing having the minimal of amenities. (Harvest Moon inspired, really)
HayStacks has 2 Categories of cards:
- Farm Cards
- Home Stead Cards
With the two separate areas, Farm and Home it’s pretty easy to figure out which cards are used where ;)
Farm Cards are broken into three different types:
- Items / Equipment
Home Stead cards have two types:
- (?) Stacks - Placing a crop or animal place a ‘stack (8x2 pixels colored brick) on the Spot.
- (?) Stack Color Combinations, or Chains give bonuses to top
- Game End
- After a set amount of time (TBD), the game just ends, tallying the amount of money and assets the player amassed
- No ending… every 7 days, a payment must be made for the land / farm / etc, and the game is “won” when the debt is paid, but can continue to be played.
In the year 1984, after you’ve finished installing your new home computer in your new home office, you receive your very first e-mail! An advanced extra-terrestrial being has made contact with you in order to offer you a once in a life-time opportunity. You see, they’re a Prince of some alien civilization you’ve never heard of and they need to transfer 40M Galactic Credits from a very lucrative contract but must use an American bank to do so… since it’s 1984, you, of course, willingly give the being your account information hoping to be a helpful citizen of the galaxy.
Unfortunately, it was that darned galactic Prince e-mail scam, and now you’ve found yourself gravely in debt to the tune of 40M Galactic Credits…. but no worry, the Galactic Bank has a job for you: a derelict old Commercial Station, a space mall.
- Add reference that you’re some sort of software/computer engineer, thus why you’re a programmer for space beings
galaxy.mall.dev takes place from the perspective of an old 1-Bit computer terminal.
The terminal is a collection of smaller “viewports” into the game world. At first, the player begins with a small amount of these ports (2 or 4 perhaps), and can upgrade their terminal to support more.
One type of view port is a “Camera” which shows a top-down view of the mall, in a very 1-bit roguelike presentation.
During the game, players engage in various mall-buildin’ and mall-running’ activities:
- Players buy new shops.
- Players buy new equipment for their terminal.
- Players control a “bot” in the mall that represents them.
- Players “program” the mall operation
The premise is that you’re still at home on your home computer in 1984, remotely running this derelict mall.
This idea spawned from a more specific situation:
You’ve got a shop, it’s got:
What if we introduced an element of programming to this?
galaxy.mall.dev allows each object to have (Lua) scripts added to them, and each object has its own API, a set of functions the object can do.
One player might program this so that the CashRegister detects when a Customer brings an item to it, and then a transactions occurs.
Another player may notice they can install wireless networking in the store, and automatically detect AND charge the customers right when they pick up an item, increasing the efficiency of the story (no longer need to pay at register).
Obviously - this is just one scenario.
What if the player builds an escalator, and are just given an escalator API? It’s up to them to write code causing it to constantly loop. Perhaps the player can add sensors to detect when there’s beings using the elevator, thus saving power?
Deck Life borrows ideas from Pizza Empire, but applies them in a more broad term. The player begins with choosing a profession “deck.” Each turn, the player’s businesses dictate which “Customer” tokens the player should draw for the turn, and then assigns their workers to deal with each. The profits from each business can then be used to expand existing businesses with more cards or to buy new business decks to start new businesses with… hopefully some that are able to “supply” your existing businesses, increasing profits!
A profession includes the play area for the business:
- This could be a board that goes along with the profession deck
- The deck could be split up into different types of cards, one type being the buildings.
Each turn is played by playing a worker token on board spots or cards that have been played.
The player themselves are one worker. Players can hire employees to use as additional tokens.
While I’m still flushing out the game play, I’m thinking right now more in terms of different styles of game depending on profession. I’m sure I’ll find some common mechanics to share amongst all of them, i.e., how are customers handled? How are employees handled? What about stocking inventory?
An example of a game deck could be the Restaurateur deck:
- The Restaurateur Deck contains “Board Cards” the represent the Player’s restaurant, and then a series of recipes, items, and customers based on the restaurant style. Initially, I’ll just drive this with something like Pizza or Fast Food until it’s more fleshed out.
The player uses their cards to layout the Restaurant board - leaving
Each player has a deck of their own color fish cards (20 probably)
The Aquarium board is a number of card spaces equal to the number of players (or potentially just 4 spots)
Players play their fish, and try to earn the most points through fish playing.
- Players may only play to their spot.
- Cards increase toxicity (skull symbols) and when a threshold is breached, all fish die
- Players may not play fish over their already played fish
- Previous fish plays help support playing higher point fish?
- Cards may decrease toxicity (remove skulls, remove cards)
- Cards may be used to affect water chemical levels
- allows for only specific fish to be played,
- kills other players fish
- Fish need to be fed
- fish food cards?
- Fish can fight other kinds of fish
- Stronger Fish cards cause weaker to discard when played?
- King of the hill instead?
- X amount of spots, players try to occupy them
- Other players try to remove opponent fish
- Play ends after X rounds
- Water Temperature Cards
meatBus is a roguelike food truck simulator. the player takes on the role of the mysterious meatBus cow chef truck driver, and has seven days to endear the population of TunaTown or else lose his job as a representative of such a fine company. in order to assist in meatBus’s introduction to the neighborhood, a grumpy, retired but overworked, work-pony is along to supervise.
Gameplay consists of two major game types. The Roadwarrior segment where the player drives around the Island of TunaTown, searching for food items to sell, and the TruckChef segment where the player fills orders from an onslaught of consumers.
Each day the player contends with a lessening fuel tank, a limited inventory, and a lack of sleep. The main play is within the Roadwarrior segment. As the player drives between intersections, he’s tries to run over as many animals as he can, to scoop ‘em into his truck. At each stop between driving, he’s given the option to setup shop, perhaps interact with the location or locals, refuel, or change course.
As the player explores TunaTown his GPS fills out with the locations around the island. The island is procedurally generated.
a game about pirates on tiled seas
In the same vein as Carcasonne, Pirate Tiles is a tile-laying digital board game at it’s heart. Each turn, players place tiles that represent either ocean or land masses, in an attempt to complete and claim the most discovered islands.
Tiles are picked and shuffled randomly (# TBA), and each player is dealt 3 tiles at random in addition to an ocean starting tile. Each player picks a corner of the play area, places their starting tile and then boat on top of it.
During a game round, each player may:
1) Move 1 Square
2) Lay one tile.
Players move their boats around the board, but only on Ocean tiles. They may move Left/Right Up/Down but not diagonally.
Each turn, they move one.
A Player may lay a tile adjacent to their boat, including diagonally, if the tile can be placed legally.
If a tile placed ‘Completes’ an Island, the player scores 1 point for each island tile of the completed island.
The Game Ends when either the ‘deck’ of tiles is exhausted, or the entire board has been filled with tiles. Since we’re a digital board game, it’ll end early if there are no legal moves left within the undrawn tiles.
TBD - But, the most land scoring points seems good for now.
I haven’t mentioned it yet, because I’m tricksy, and also because the possibilities here are a little endless - but there could also be SPECIAL amazing tiles in the tile deck:
Spells, like Unleash the Kraken could also be drawn from the tile deck, giving players bonuses, i.e., Unleash the Kraken allows players to place a Kraken on an ocean tile, making the tiles around impassible for X amount of turns.
Obviously, this leaves room for movement bonuses, or teleports, or other various things I haven’t thought of yet.
In addition to spells, there could be ‘trees’ or small ‘structures’ on land tiles that give the player bonuses for completing an island i.e., Banana Tree tiles are worth 2 points vs 1 for a normal tile… or perhaps there’s a Settlement tile that gives bonuses when placed (i.e., after placing a Settlement, draw one tile for each empty tile around it - if it matches, place it, if it doesn’t discard it.)
Note: 3.5 Seas started as this idea.
a game about remembering training
Remember Your Training! is a fast paced button matching/mashing game played against a single AI/Human player. Each player uses a deck of cards, each card with a button prompt they must hit, to perform attacks against their opponent. Once their opponent has fallen, they win! If both players spend their deck, then another round begins until only one player remains standing.
At the beginning of each round, each player picks the cards they want to place in their deck of cards, as well as the order they will be drawn in.
During each round, both players flip the top card of their decks, and immediately press the buttons represented on the cards. As SOON as they’re pressed, the next card is flipped, and so on.
If either player runs out of cards, they wait until their opponent also has, and then, if both players still are standing, the round begins again - with each player resetting their deck and order.
Play continues until one opponent as run out of all their HP.
Each Card has a button prompt to complete, and in addition to this a damage value. When the card is flipped, the damage begins to drop over time, and if the player either hits the wrong buttons or doesn’t hit the correct ones in time, the card is discarded and missed. This card is removed from the rest of this game.
Once a button press is successful, the damage for that card is dealt to the opponent, and then a multiplier ‘token’ is added. After X multiplier tokens, you increase your multiplier and deal that new amount of damage.
On a miss, the multiplier and all tokens are reset.
As a follow up idea - this could be dressed up more as a solo game where the player is a Dog performing tricks. Each time they succeed, they earn more and more points. Points they can use at the end of the game to buy new cards to use… with the purpose of unlocking all the cards in the game.
Both of the ideas could be better served by deck balancing rules such as limiting the point values / damage values a deck is allowed to have, or the number of duplicates of a single card.
a game about sales and deals.
Shopping Trip is intended to be a “digital board game” in that it features turn-based, round-based gameplay similar to that you’d have in a boardgame, as well as components also similar to those in a board game. Each turn players try to move around from store-to-store scoring the best deals they can on items on their shopping lists before the mall closes for the day. At the end of the game, whoever was able to get the most items on their list wins. If multiple people are tied, or complete their list, then whoever spent the least wins the game.
The game area setup is 4 “Store” spots in the center of a board, with 4 “Parking Space” spots surrounding the block of Stores.
- Each Store has 4 spaces for stacks of tiles representing their stock, each with a price beneath them, as well as a deck of Store cards.
- Each Parking Spot counts adjacent to the two stores that share their side of the block with the parking lot.
Each Game Round Consists of the following, and then I’ll break each one down a little more specifically:
1) For each Store without an active ‘Store Card’ flip a new card.
* Stock new tiles from the new store cards, and change any prices.
2) Players take their turns one by one.
3) ‘Tick’ Sales on Store Cards.
Each turn is played in sequence by each player.
On a players turn they may:
- Move one space, but not diagnolly
- Pick up an item
We’ll go through each of these.
A player can move from their car to a store on the same side as the parking lot (Left lot can go to either Left 2 stores, but not the stores on the right side, etc). They can move from one store to another store. Or they can return to a parking lot from the stores.
In addition, players may move from one parking lot to another, with or without their car. And this is a single turn as well.
EXCEPTION: Players may not leave a store while carrying unpaid items from that store. No shoplifting! If a player wishes to move without buying the items, they may simply return them to their stacks. This does NOT cost an action.
Each store has 4 different items they’re selling at any given time, and the player may pick up one of these items. A player may only hold 2 items at any given time, and this includes while shopping.
A player may pick up a single item, or check out any items they’re carrying that aren’t paid for. If a player has two items they haven’t paid for, they can check out both with a single action.
On the board are four different stores. Each store has a Store Deck and Inventory. These represent the stock of what items they carry, as well as the prices of each. The Store Deck dictates what the current prices are for each item, as well as rules to restock each of the piles of items. Each store has Four Inventory slots.
Store Cards often are active for more than one turn, which is represented by a clock with the # of turns remaining. During the Tick Phase, these are decreased by 1, and when this is 0, the card is discarded.
The Game Ends when all of the Store Card decks are empty. Once a deck is emptied, even if any others aren’t the store begins its ‘closing’ phase. When a store is closing, it no longer puts out new inventory, and then each subsequent turn, one pile at random is removed from its inventory until none are left. This store can no longer be entered at this point.
If a player is unable to return to their car because a ‘wall’ of stores have block them off, they will be force to navigate the parking lot.
Each Player checks their list, and gains a point for each item purchased.
If a player completes their list, they gain a 5 point bonus.
If multiple players are tied, then whoever spent the least is the winner.
- Players do NOT need to return to their cars at game end.
- Any item PURCHASED counts. Even if its still in their hands, and they’re standing in a closed store.