[XP] Paracosm

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

**
Rep: +0/-0Level 52
RMRK Junior
I'm a complete newcomer here, and this is my very first RM project. Aim high, I guess?




Paracosm

Story

Your daughter is gone.

Barbara should have been home from school hours ago. Nobody's seen her. She isn't with her friends, or at the library, or anywhere else.

In fact, she's nowhere on Earth.

Barbara has gone into Solafria--her imaginary world, which she's been building since she was four. She has entire countries in there, mountains made of glass, groves of talking birds, cities populated by porcelain dolls. Solafria is, for better or worse, a reflection of the world she lives in; its people are her thoughts, its dangers her fears. And now she's run away to the castle at its very center.

And now you have to find her.



Gameplay

Structurally, Paracosm is a very linear game; as Helen (Barbara's mother) you move through a series of encounters, each of which will have multiple outcomes. How you choose to complete these encounters will determine what kind of mother you are, what kind of relationship you have with your daughter, and ultimately affect what ending you get. (There will be at least eleven different endings, with multiple variations on each of those endings.)

Each encounter is unique. Some will be "dialogue challenges", in which the player tries to achieve a goal through conversation. Some may use standard turn-based RPG combat. There may be logic puzzles, stealth sequences, even encounters that require nothing more than patience. The intent is to give players a wide variety of challenges, while making it possible for even novice players to achieve whatever ending they want.



Player choice

The moral-choice system in Paracosm is based on games by Obsidian Entertainment--games like Neverwinter Nights 2, Fallout: New Vegas, or even Planescape: Torment by the same team at their previous studio Black Isle. In these games, the player determines the character's alignment through their dialogue and actions, and this alignment thus affects the content they see.

I want to stress that player choice in Paracosm will be more complex and in-depth than your standard Good-versus-Evil alignment system. Every mother-and-daughter relationship is different; there is no "best" or "worst" mother, only many shades of gray. Similarly, while some of the endings may seem more loving or more cruel than others, none of them are meant to be the Good or Bad endings.

Additionally, there are other choices for the player that will subtly (or not-so-subtly) alter the dialogue and ending they receive. Was Barbara adopted? Is her father devoted, divorced, a deadbeat, or dead? Is there friction between the parents? Again, there are no Good or Bad answers to any of these questions, but the player's choices will affect what they see.



Presentation

Visually, the world of Solafria is meant to reflect a child's imagination: outlandish, certainly, but still reflecting elements of their everyday life. A child, no matter how creative, will still be limited by what they've seen, heard, or read about. The mundane and fantastic will rub shoulders; a normal-looking cottage will be inhabited by a walking, talking bear, or a family of life-sized dolls will live in a steampunk factory the size of a skyscraper. Most of the graphics can be built with the "standard" RMXP tilesets, though there will need to be several custom sprites.

Musically, I'm imagining a lot of repeating, orchestral or woodwind pieces, mostly minor key. If you know the works of Philip Glass, that's what I'm thinking. (Here's one sample, and here's another.)



If you want to help
What I'm desperately in need of are people who know RPG Maker XP. I'm still learning the engine, and I already know there are going to be sections that will be beyond my meager ability. Someone who can script, set up events and cutscenes, or even just tell me whether what I'm trying to do is impossible, would be a godsend. As it is, I'll have to kludge together a lot of the stuff on my own.

Pixel artists would also be appreciated, especially people who do backgrounds. I've got an artist friend who's very interested in doing sprites, but she's less confident about objects and maps and so forth.

I already know a composer who I want to work with, but if you're interested and you want to send me your stuff, by all means, do so.



The question of money
I want Paracosm to be a commercially released game. However, I know this is a very long and difficult road--not to mention expensive to boot. My thought is to put together a demo--one or two encounters, a few cutscenes, maybe one of the bosses--then use that to set up a Kickstarter. I'll then use those funds to pay artists, composers, scripters, etc.

Let me be very clear: I want to pay you what you deserve for your work. I'm a freelancer myself, so I understand how important it is to get paid for your efforts. I can't offer anything right now, but if you're willing to be patient, I will do my utmost to pay you what you are owed. If you're interested, by all means, PM or email me, and we'll work something out.




Questions? Comments? Feedback? Hate mail?

**
Rep:
Level 66
welcome to night vale
Contestant - GIAW 10
This all sounds very wonderful!

The problem is that you've come here with only an idea. You've got it laid out well enough; people understand what sort of game you're going to make and so on, but there's really nothing currently done to let someone know if they'd like to work on this with you or not. You've said as much yourself in your post; you need help with everything. Idea Men -- concept described somewhat here: http://conceptpending.com/confessions-of-a-former-idea-man/ and in many other places -- are difficult to work with, especially when that's all they contribute.

I strongly suggest you tool around in RMXP and learn how to do some of these things yourself before dreaming up Kickstarters. There are several tutorials floating around out there, on this site and on others; they'll help, really!

Good luck on your project!

**
Rep: +0/-0Level 52
RMRK Junior
The problem is that you've come here with only an idea. You've got it laid out well enough; people understand what sort of game you're going to make and so on, but there's really nothing currently done to let someone know if they'd like to work on this with you or not. You've said as much yourself in your post; you need help with everything. Idea Men -- concept described somewhat here: http://conceptpending.com/confessions-of-a-former-idea-man/ and in many other places -- are difficult to work with, especially when that's all they contribute.

True! Very true! I don't want to be just an Idea Man; I really am trying to learn the engine as much as possible, so I don't have to rely on someone else to implement everything (and, if I do find an Engine Person, so I can knowledgeably evaluate their work).

That being said, I have more than just an idea. I've been laying out the different encounters, deciding on the multiple outcomes, and in some cases writing the scripts for individual encounters or endings. The full game layout isn't complete, not by a long shot, but it's much more than what I've written here. If people are interested, I can upload more information about specific encounters, or even parts of the script. I just don't want to bog down this thread with a giant Wall O' Text.

**
Rep:
Level 66
welcome to night vale
Contestant - GIAW 10
That being said, I have more than just an idea. I've been laying out the different encounters, deciding on the multiple outcomes, and in some cases writing the scripts for individual encounters or endings.

All of those things will definitely be of use! It still doesn't make me think you'll have an easier time getting people to work with you, though; getting a demo out might be a good way to attract interested parties. (I've never used RMXP, so I'm of zero use to you.) I'll definitely be following this thread, though. I look forward to seeing your progress! :D

*
Rep:
Level 85
I solve practical problems.
For taking arms in the name of your breakfast.
I only briefly read this but it seems like a great idea, and we've had a rather dismal crop of xp games XD

**
Rep: +0/-0Level 52
RMRK Junior
Just thought of this: if anyone is interested in reading something I've written, take a look at this short story I posted to my blog last month. It's part of another project of mine--also in development--but it stands on its own. It has nothing to do with Paracosm, but if you want to get an idea of what kind of writer I am, this might be a place to start!