Dear Square Enix, team Final Fantasy:
The system of elements--a combination of literal elemental power and schools of magic--was probably the first thing I ever tried to design for the Demonsword Project, and I have never really settled on what they ought to be and why. I think I have found a solution that I like--but I've thought that before. I would warmly welcome any comments on the matter.
Can we talk briefly about Starbound? At press time, the 1.0 update hasn't come out yet, and the news I'm reacting to is around a month old, but I just... can't stop being really stupidly upset by the blog blurb, in part because it seems to confirm something I've feared for a while: the Starbound team has no writers worth writing home about.
A continuation of the previous article, which was an overview of the concept. In this post, I'll go into some other thoughts I've had on the design. All things considered, this would be a lot of fun to develop and to play, and I hope I get a chance to later on.
The Stances Battle Engine concept is a RPG battle engine concept based most strongly on the idea of preparation. The name itself comes from martial arts stances, but the system is expanded in my head to include a new way of envisioning magic abilities, again based on preparation, but most specifically the way in which your preparation affect the range of your mage's abilities.
There are a number of interesting video game conceits and it can be absolutely delightful to mash a few together. Rogue Academy is a game concept involving roguelike elements, relationship building and time management vis a vis the Persona series of video games, and team management vis a vis the Disgaea series of video games.
My personal notes on this project label it "MCB / DES / GW", which are three distinct game concepts all cut from the same general cloth. Project MC is a design, nay a desire, to make a new game in the vein of the old DOS/Playstation game "Magic Carpet" by Bullfrog Interactive. (GOG: MC MC2). I didn't play the original, but as a child I was enamored with the sequel, Netherworlds.
This is a topic I thought of listening to the NPC Cast discuss Hacking in RPGs. It occurs to me that hacking in reality is very much a preparation problem and if you were to use it cinematically, you would need to have a system that lets you do the preparation beforehand and just drop successful (or semi-successful) actions on the party triumphantly. Out of that, I came up with the idea of Prep Cards.
I sometimes spend my time thinking what I would do if I had money. Honestly, I wish I could talk to a billionaire; not to ask or beg for money, but just to talk. Because I have a strange sense, like if I were talking to a billionaire, it would still be a hypothetical question: "What would you do if you had a billion dollars?" Somehow it doesn't feel like billionaires act like billionaires. It doesn't feel like they have that money.
Number two in my list of SS13 spinoff concepts, I feel that the aesthetic, mechanics, and universe of Space Station 13 would lend itself well to a roguelike in the traditional sense; a survivor against the galaxy facing long odds, odds so long that you will die a thousand times before your first true victory.