New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collaborators

New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collaborators

Postby emlai » 14 Mar 2018, 23:01

Hi!

I'm looking for experienced developers/designers/artists to collaborate on a new open-world graphical roguelike/RPG.
The game has pixel art graphics, and features an infinite procedurally-generated world, buildings, and dungeons.

I have implemented a simple prototype of the game in C++14 and SDL2. I'm open to converting to other languages or frameworks though.
You can find the code and graphics here: https://github.com/emlai/zenith

If you want to read some low-effort design documents and other random stuff about the game that I've written over the years, check out https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B6sR75bEye30aWFFYzBldWk0cjg.

If you're interested or have any questions, comment here or contact me at laine.emil@gmail.com or @emlai on Telegram.

zenith1.jpg
zenith2.jpg
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby c_xong » 15 Mar 2018, 22:36

Looks good; what is the goal of this project? Is it to create yet another roguelike, or is there something that makes it unique? I skimmed the GDD but didn't find any such info.
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby emlai » 15 Mar 2018, 23:57

Thanks for the reply!

The goal is to shift the focus from dungeon crawling towards more sandboxey open-world exploration (think cities, forests, etc.), compared to traditional roguelikes.
This by itself doesn't of course make the game unique, but here are some specific features I have thought about that as a whole might make the game unique:

- No overworld, everything is connected in a single big world that's gradually generated as the player travels further. In the prototype I've implemented you can for example reach any other dungeon by just digging far enough horizontally (I'm not aware of any other roguelike that does this).
- Graphics should show a lot of information, e.g. what the player is wearing, blood trails on the floor, dynamic light from various light sources (including the lack of light). I.e. the game should show most of what would be visible in real life, as much as makes sense on a 2D grid.
- A lot of possible interactions with the environments, such as digging, building, and (probably later) farming, hunting, etc.
- Should have a lot of humor, e.g. in non-player character responses, in the form of events that can happen in the game, and as intertextual references to other games/movies/literature.
- The in-game setting: mostly a traditional fantasy style, but I'm interested in mixing in some sci-fi elements, such as guns, robots, and environmental technology (automatic doors, pressure plates, etc.).
- Relatively lightweight on stories and quests, instead focus more on procedural generation. So less of an RPG and more of a roguelike in this sense.
- Graphical style roughly similar to what is shown in the screenshots, except nicer.
- Maybe some kind of multiplayer mode? The multiplayer mode cannot be turn-based though, unless it's a co-op between just a few players that are in the same real-life location.
- High-scores, and probably some global hall of fame with the best high-scores from all players.

None of this is set in stone though, I'm open to any ideas from anyone.
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby c_xong » 16 Mar 2018, 02:46

Sounds like a lot of things to build!

For the open world gameplay, sounds similar to https://rogueboxadventures.tuxfamily.org/, you should check it out if you haven't already, to steal ideas, look for things to improve on etc.

As for being unique, I guess I used the wrong word. I don't think it matters if your game isn't unique, or if even it's totally derivative. Since you're looking for potential collaborators, they would be interested in what you want to do with the project - the goal of the project. So for example, I've worked on games where the goal was to:
- Learn how to make games
- Learn a framework/engine
- Explore a mechanic/idea
- Clone a game that I enjoyed before but wasn't available on some platform

So let's say a writer wants to write for a game about zombies. If your goal is just "to make a roguelike", the writer's goals don't conflict with yours. On the other hand, if your goal was to "make a vampire roguelike", you may have to discuss first what a "zombies and vampires" roguelike looks like and if that's going to be acceptable.

From what you've described, maybe your goal is to make a large sandbox roguelike that combines good ideas from multiple other roguelikes, with a focus on open world procgen?
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby emlai » 17 Mar 2018, 01:06

Ah yes, in that sense of the word, my goal with this project is to produce a quality game that people can enjoy for years to come. Ambitious, I know, but after many years of thinking about this game idea, here I am, still willing to implement it.

Personally, I'm pretty familiar with the language and graphics library I've used in the prototype. But I'm fine with collaborators that are not as much, as long as they can contribute to the project's goal in some meaningful way. So I think this project is not so well suited for those who want to learn the very basics of gamedev/C++/SDL. But of course there's always something to learn for everyone, so I'd be happy to help, and learn from each other.

You're right in that this is a lot to do, however not all of the features I mentioned have to necessarily be in the first release of game, which lightens the workload a bit. And the more collaborators, the more manageable it becomes, which is why I posted here. I certainly cannot do this alone.

And yes, a "large sandbox roguelike that combines good ideas from multiple other roguelikes, with a focus on open world procgen" sounds like a pretty accurate description of what I have in mind.
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby emlai » 17 Mar 2018, 12:28

Today I had the idea to make this a battle royale -style game, i.e. a multiplayer all-vs-all (or team-based) game with permadeath where the last player/team alive wins.

Like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds and Fortnite, which are super popular currently, but as a roguelike. It seems to fit really well with the other gameplay ideas that I mentioned. Also I didn't find any existing battle royale or last-man-standing multiplayer roguelike.
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby domtron » 05 Apr 2018, 18:23

The "open sandbox" and "continuous, no overworld" bits sounds like cataclysm DDA. There are two map levels: aboveground and underground(There are actually several underground layers to allow for sort of dungeons). You can for example dig sideways from a giant ant colony to the nearby subway and then the basement of the house you turned base.

Any plan for a modding system? Looking at it briefly it probably wouldn't be too hard since you are configuring everything in editable files already. Dependencies can be a pain to setup if allowing the community to make and distribute them. But mods would allow players to add/remove chunks of content they want/don't want like sci-fi elements in a fantasy game.

Compiled seamlessly and I didn't see any problems when running it. Main menu is a little lackluster, but this early on that is understandable.
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby emlai » 05 Apr 2018, 19:49

Yeah this would probably be quite similar to Cataclysm DDA in that sense. But less post-apocalyptic, and more of a fantasy/medieval setting.

And yes, a modding system would be on the todo list, as this is intended to be a very community-driven game. I think an important part of that would be to add a scripting system, so you can write game logic without needing to compile anything.

Glad to hear it compiles for you, and yeah that menu... it will get a proper look at some point.
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby domtron » 06 Apr 2018, 20:03

If you want to go with Lua like many other moddable games, I suggest Sol2 for an integration library. I've been using it for a project and it is quite nice and full featured. The author is also very active on their gitter channel and will help you out quickly if there is any confusion from the examples and documentation.

Sol2 also has a single header version so you can just include it in your project with no need for users to install it separately. They will of course need to install lua/luajit, but that is available in many package repos and easy to install on windows(I think).

https://github.com/ThePhD/sol2
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby emlai » 07 Apr 2018, 00:07

Thanks for the suggestion! I've heard good things about Lua.

Another possibility I've been thinking about is to use JavaScript for scripting, since a lot of people (including me) are familiar with it and its syntax is more similar to C++. Specifically many of my friends know JS, but I don't know anyone in my circles who knows Lua.

Haven't yet decided which one to use, we'll see...
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Re: New open-world graphical roguelike looking for collabora

Postby dulsi » 13 Apr 2018, 21:17

If you want javascript, duktape is pretty easy to integrate. I used it in scriptmine which implemented scriptcraft like interface for minetest.
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