The RPG Maker Resource Kit

RMRK RPG Maker Creation => Projects => Abandoned Projects => Topic started by: the_mantic on February 12, 2009, 05:32:19 AM

Title: [Recruiting] Universe Acid
Post by: the_mantic on February 12, 2009, 05:32:19 AM
A Narrativist Role Playing Game About the Ideas That Change Everything

An RPG created to tell a powerful story that explores the ideas of great authors and philosophers. An RPG that asks the questions, “What makes a hero, ends or means?” and “How many must die for ‘idealism’?” and “What is an individual?” It is an RPG about the power of ideas and the way they can change everything.

The story will be told in chapters, the first beginning with Jude in stasis and ending with his escape.
Spoiler for:
A young man, believing his name to be “Jude Maccabeus,” is admitted to the top government ward in the metropolitan city of Poleis.  The man, referred to as “The Subject” by the top scientists conducting his treatment, was infected by a strange virus that targeted his bone-marrow. Due to the rapid growth of the virus, the Subject is kept in a medical stasis, only ever coming to consciousness briefly in his dreams. Dreams that are constantly monitored by Doctor Scuddard and Doctor Rodya, who attempt to map the blips on the MRI with English vocabulary. At the game’s opening, we learn they have mapped three new words “security”, “money”, and “crow”. Words that mean something in the Subject’s invisible dream, but are simply the areas that spike on the neuroscan when the subject resists the hypnopaedia (sleep-teaching) to which he is being subjected. 
From there, the player takes control of Jude Maccabeus, who relives his time in a privatized police force (or security company) known as “Black Crow Security” which is headed-up by the brusque objectivist Zus Brandenburg. The political winds of Poleis begin shifting and a free-market approach to security is no longer welcomed. As government action kicks into place, Black Crow Security is caught up saving customers from strange fates that seem too prevalent in Poleis. 
Something is changing everything. A “universal acid” that eats even the container in which it is held is being unleashed upon the world. This may be connected to the strange virus infecting Jude’s bone marrow.

Spoiler for:
The game is set in one of the “multiple-personalities” of Earth. A world where writers like Nietzsche and Lewis, Locke and Hobbes, have existed and had impact. But also a world where monsters roam the forests, where scientists create super-heroes, where aliens visit, where cowboys have shootouts, where mages cast magic, where a fanatic cult believes that the abandoned General Mills factory is the New Jerusalem. Swords exist alongside guns, motorcycles alongside horse-drawn carriages, ancient temples alongside nuclear missile silos. This is not to say all things from all time exist, but the world seems to be a crux of powerful stories.  One who knows either the imagination of a child or the works of Stephen King can imagine such a world.
 Specific places: Poleis – An industrial city-state, on the cutting edge of technology. Central Train Hub of the world. Originally a minarchist government, consisting simply of a Senate. Now, the government jockeys for more power. Black Crow Tower– The center of Black Crow Security, Black Crow Vehicles (formerly Black Crow Automotive), and Black Crow Weapons and Tech. Sits just to the north of Poleis (a suburb called "Cyrene"), if it cannot geographically be the cities heart, it is the cities brain. The Academy at Cyrene, aka “Roost”- Black Crow training academy and barracks located in the suburb of Poleis, Cyrene.

Here's a story I wrote to illustrate the way our History has become the world's Myth :,32289.0.html
It is uncertain whether this will surface in the game or not.

Spoiler for:
“Jude Maccabeus” – A young man with a unique bone-marrow condition. He is a night watchman for Black Crow Security. Though his psyche is in flux, a “liberator” persona always surfaces. Throughout the game he believes his name is “Jude Maccabeus,” “Marcus Brutus,” “Simon Bolivar” and “John Galt” among others.  Swordsman.

Star Peterson – a young girl that Jude meets at the Academy at Cyrene. She is hot-headed and pedantic, but falls in short bursts for Jude’s idealism. Eventually she comes around to Jude’s idea of the Academy being a “Spartan School,” one that encourages its students to break the rules, but will punish them if caught. She seems to hate privatized police companies, so her reasons for being enrolled in the Academy are strange if not backwards. She rises to prominence using throwing weapons.

Zus Brandenburg – Brusque, but intellectual soldier who owns Black Crow Security. He is obsessed with money and seems to only care about himself. He is simply smart enough to know he needs others to survive. Uses firearms.

Wyatt King – A reputed gunslinger and infiltration specialist who spearheads a coup d’état against the Poleis government. His interests often coincide with those of Black Crow Security. Wyatt has the unique ability to become nothing but a shadow—a technique that some accredit to dark magic, others to stolen government technology, and still others to a technique learned in the “Far East.”

Lola Pearce – A girl Jude’s age, subscriber to Black Crow Security and nominal supporter of Wyatt’s revolution. Though usually quiet and reserved, when desperate she will use her charm for her benefit. Jude feels unreciprocated infatuation towards her. At the game’s opening we only know she has made some sacrifice for his sake. She is an archer and a psychonaut.

Doctor Rodya – Lead Scientist in the People’s Republic of Poleis. Heads the study of Jude Maccabeus alongside Doctor Scuddard. Begins forming a theory based on heretical Jungian psychology.

Doctor Scuddard – Lead Scientist alongside Doctor Rodya. Genius, but lazy. He is never willing to go above and beyond if it means the same amount of cash flow.

The Economist – Keeper of heterodox and heretical works for the People’s Republic of Poleis. Locked away in his underground library writing equations most hours of the day. Rodya’s resource for his great study on Jude.

Francis Victor – Charming, prominent member of Securitas, a rival Security Company. He has a playboy nature but probably has a heart hidden within him. He is genetically modified to the peak of his abilities with his prototype weaponry and old-school rapiers.

Jimmy Klein – Head of Securitas, underhanded and greedy. His love for money seems different than Zus’s in some strange way. Looks to the People’s Republic for subsidies often.

Other characters will arise and fall in subsequent chapters of the game. Of them, Mr. Domhnall will be the most prominent. He is the leader of the People’s Republic of Poleis. He loves the ordered aspects of life: math, taxonomy, crystalline structures, etc. His aim is to “give people what they deserve from life” and to create a “global community.”

Spoiler for:
Comic book style art direction ("Cel-Shading" Filter)
Ambiguously moral protagonists (main characters motivated primarily by greed and rebellion, opposition primarily motivated by community and a sense of duty)
Heavy philosophical themes (not just your Final Fantasy “What is reality?” quandaries either)
Characters representing differing views of philosophers and authors (one character follows the teachings of William Blake, another is an Übermensch)
Characters with radically different abilities and requirements
Original "Powers System".
Side-view Battle System

Contact me through PM. I hope I sufficiently described my vision for this project.
1)   Graphic Artist –to draw characters in multiple poses that will be used for combat system. Also to draw comic book panels that show up throughout the story and the combat. (i.e. a frame of two characters kissing, a frame of an energy attack charging up) Will also require custom facesets.
2)   Tilesetter – One who makes tilesets. Original sets may be required at several places.
3)   Mapper – I can make events fine, but one who can make intricate maps is a god in my book. In the first chapter, mostly urban environments are shown alongside a single forest environment.
4)   Musician – for an original soundtrack. Something beautifully nostalgic would fit the game towards the end, while a more urban sound would flesh out the beginning. Recruited: Agent.
5)   Sprite Guy – one to make the charsets, essential as the game calls for characteristically unique sprites.
6)     Scripter - One who can help create an intricate and "cinematic" battle system.
7)   Anyone willing to help. Even though I plan to write it, code for combat, and event, I am not opposed to someone else stepping in who feels they can do it better.  And I would love as much help as possible in each and every area. Every and anyone who enjoys storytelling, axiology, or philosophy is more than welcome.

So far...
The Battle System So Far
Spoiler for:
The Battle System is based on skills and stats that range from 3-20+. The skills are rolled against a 3d6 system similar to pen-and-paper rpgs. 3d6 allows for a nice bell-curve that justifies elements like decapitations when a 3 is rolled and gun malfunctions when 18 is rolled. Here's a (very) broad overview:

Characters with melee weapons cannot attack targets without first using the "Engage" move action to enter the fray. "Engaging" characters are more likely to be attacked by enemies. A wide array of melee abilities from grappling a certain limb (arm, leg, etc.) to "aggressively parrying" a ranged attack (attacking the enemy's arm as they try to use it) opens up to engaging characters (assuming they know the techniques).

Characters who are at a range may go "Prone," take "Cover" or do a number of "Charge" actions. Assuming the character has the "Leaping" power, he may be able to run across a wall, attempting to draw enemy fire in his wake.

If the Character takes Cover, they can then use "pop-up" attacks if they have a ranged weapon equipped. The character is penalized by the weight of their ranged weapon each time they attempt a "pop-up" attack. An enemy with an automatic weapon may choose to "pin-down" characters behind cover.

Cover does not appear in every map but has a higher chance of doing so depending on a character skill called "Tactics."

Characters who are attacked may choose to either, "Dodge" or "Parry" Dodging is unlikely but works in every situation where the character can move. Parrying works quite well, but only if the character has a melee weapon.   

A picture of the new-born battle system. NOTE: ALL GRAPHICS ARE PLACEHOLDERS. This is in no way a final display.

I really hope I find an artist soon to "flesh out" a system of scripting and place-holder graphics. >_<
Title: Re: Universe Acid
Post by: Revo on February 12, 2009, 05:44:10 AM
That's a very interesting idea there. I'll be watching this project. I wish you luck on this one.
Title: Re: Universe Acid
Post by: modern algebra on February 12, 2009, 03:50:19 PM
This seems really neat. Good luck! I'll keep an eye on this project.
Title: Re: Universe Acid
Post by: the_mantic on February 13, 2009, 09:24:41 PM
Thank you guys. I was afraid that I would not find an audience for this sort of game. As far as I'm concerned, this is progress.
Title: Re: Universe Acid
Post by: Sophist on February 13, 2009, 10:35:05 PM
An RPG that asks the questions, “What makes a hero, ends or means?” and “How many must die for ‘idealism’?” and “What is an individual?” It is an RPG about the power of ideas and the way they can change everything.


joking, of course, but that's the first thing I thought of.

Also this seems quite influenced by The Dark Tower in the ways of twisting the reality the creator is in with what seems to be another reality that has been imagined in the fiction of the creators in the first place.

Sounds interesting, i'd like to see this.
Title: Re: Universe Acid
Post by: the_mantic on February 13, 2009, 11:10:26 PM
I love you, Anski. 
Heh, I hope it doesn't come through as anything other than strong influence, but right now I'm on a steady diet of King and Rand. That's even my version of Atlas Shrugged. (Though I guess I do mention objectivism by name, as well as Stephen King. . .)

In any case, as far as the characters go, the idea is akin to Lost or Crime and Punishment where each (or several) characters embody the ideas of a certain philosopher or author. My "Randian" character, however, is far from typical. Zus Brandenburg is unattractive, alcoholic, and a hidden romantic. Still an objectivist, though.

Many other works do influence this also: The Gift of Death, Human Action, Psychological Types, Future of an Illusion, The Abolition of Man, Songs of Innocence and Experience, Ecce Homo, For a New Liberty, and the Marvel Comics "Civil War" series. There's probably more, people draw sources from everywhere, but those are what I have direct quotes written down from.
Title: Re: [Recruiting] Universe Acid
Post by: Sthrattoff on February 15, 2009, 05:15:15 AM
Hey, seems we got same thing in our heads!
Title: Re: [Recruiting] Universe Acid
Post by: the_mantic on February 17, 2009, 02:30:20 AM
New Update with my progress so far. The biggest need right now is an artist to work with for the battle system to finally look incredible, as I'm pretty positive it can.
Also, my displaying variables stopped working, so I'm going to be looking into that.
Title: Re: [Recruiting] Universe Acid
Post by: Nightwolf on February 24, 2009, 02:45:07 PM
I'm taking music requests in these days since I have a lot of free time (I'm moving next month though, maybe inactive for some time).,32195.0.html

A thing I made. I'm not good with rock and other fasty/metally types so it would be better if you had two.

Or someone who knew it all.


Your game looks great, good luck ^_^
I like how you link your characters to different things, actually gives them a good personality and makes it more realistic.
And cel-shaded grahpics are the best. I started loving them after POP:4(I call the 2008 POP as pop4) and I'll love this too =3
Title: Re: [Recruiting] Universe Acid
Post by: tSwitch on March 09, 2009, 01:40:40 PM
wow, I really like this idea, keep at it, I'd love to see it finished.