vineri, 28 septembrie 2012

Asylum Master Anouncement Post.

I am currently developing Asylum Master, a game about being the master of a mental instution (asylum) in Victorian Age.
It is a real-time (it's really turn based but the mechanics are implemented in a way to emulate real-time) management strategy. You will have tabs available (somewhat resembling the Master of Orion Tabs), each tab allowing you to manage an aspect of the game:pacients, staff, researching, travelling, administration, policies,personal. The current supported resolution of the game is 1280x1024. I am using SDL and related libraries and the supported OS is curently Windows.

Since my funds are nonexistent limited and I desire to control all the aspects of the game, I am the one doing all the Photoshoping and Music editing and obviously the Programming.
 The game is set in Victorian England 19th century (or a very close resemblance of England). You just got your licence to open a private mental institution. Your funds are somewhat limited, your medical equipment is virtually nonexistent and the few patients you have in your care are some low-class poor bastards that don't bring very much money. And all the available treatments are trepanation and blood-letting. So what will you do? Start a corespondence with some of the renown people of your time, travel to a big city and visit other lunatics houses to learn from their experience, start building some new wards or maybe research some of those whacky -and probably even crazier than your residents- technologies : electricity, chemistry (it's probably just a fancy word invented by those dirty alchemists)?
I did my fair share of researching all the in's and outs of the 19th century lunatics and lunatics houses and let me tell you that it's a sick but somewhat fascinating world.  I am trying to create a world close resembling that of a madhouse but within the limits of my understanding and design powers (so don't expect much historical or medical accuracy).
If all goes well I will probably release a demo on 15 Oct 2012.

That beeing said, I offer you 2 screenshots from early development stages (took them about 2 weeks ago) so you can form an impression about the feel of the game.
Screenshot 1 present a design concept of the pacient tab and screenshot 2 is the main menu window.

 Ooh, and the game will (probably) be called Asylum Master.

4 comentarii:

  1. If you intend to make game of this genre, I recommend you try two games:
    - Theme Hospital
    - Startopia
    They are of identical genre to yours, If my judgment is correct.
    You will find that genre dearly need humour in content and excution, or it will fall flat. There's many forgetable examples in that genre where not enough humour kill the title. Like Tycoon Hotel?

    1. What I originally had in mind was a more mature, dark theme, with maybe some hints of very dark humor. I will see how it feels after it comes closer to the final development stage. You may be wright though. A game like that it has to be very humorous or very dramatic and dark, otherwise it will be mundane and boring.

  2. I dont see where gallow humours obstruct your aims, if you intend to keep your original design.
    Think of Theme Hospital as Theme Funeral. Your arriving corpse is a guy burst from overeating, what will make him pretty again? Or him being a blueballed Viagra-overdosed guy? What will do to make him not scaring the visitation.
    Also, you want to try a 19th century setting. Remember the silly beliefs and theories and you can make a funny game. And historically instructive.

    1. I know what you're saying although I haven't played Theme Hospital yet. You are thinking maybe something like Tropico(4)? I mean the funny drawn portraits, el presidente, all the subtle humour and that?
      Well, to be honest with you, I think that the humour in a game it's implemented because of only 2 reasons (which most of the time exclude each other):
      1. The type of game requires a funny theme. Grim Fandango, a game with a funny pirate on an island - never played it as I am not a big fan of adventure games.
      2. The game has a serious and dark theme, but in order to appeal to larger audiences and not to shock the public (hey, let's coat killing, arresting and stealing with humour) and the only game that comes in mind at this hour is Tropico 4. I would've enjoyed the game even (or maybe even more) if it wasn't humorous. But no, people want to be happy after playing a game:D.
      So, long story short, for me, the finished product should feel like a movie. And I am not talking cinematics. No. I am talking about that unique feelings that you have after watching a good movie. I am talking about a certain atmosphere. I have to admit though, that probably a happy, silly game with happy fat merchants and skinny low-class workers and funny, crazy faces would have a larger appeal to the masses. I just don't know if I can deliver that funny game. But, how I said in some of my previous statements, I will see how it goes/feels and decide upon a final "aroma" for the game latter. For now, I'll just go with my right side of the brain.