P.E.A.C.E. - A WIP Science Fiction Crime Mystery


#1

Hello! I’m Saracenar. I started a thread a couple of months ago (http://www.choiceofgames.com/forum/discussion/813/what-kind-of-game-would-you-prefer/), where I asked whether players would rather see another zombie game, or a science fiction crime mystery story. As I’m sure you can tell from the title, I went with the latter (but zombies aren’t off the menu completely! Someday I will tackle them!), and thus P.E.A.C.E. was born.

In P.E.A.C.E. (still a working title), you take on the role of an agent of the Protocol Enforcement and Corrections Enterprise (PEACE) in a slightly futuristic setting, on a vaguely Earth-like planet.

It is the job of PEACE agents to maintain security and harmony among the people of the world, but in particular, Lendar City; a capital for urbanisation, industry, expansion and science. It is in this sprawling metropolis of a city that you, the player, will be [somewhat] free to roam in order to solve one of the most serious and potentially destabilising crimes you’ve seen in all your time as an agent.

When the CEO of one of the three largest industrial giants goes missing, it is your job to keep a lid on things so that the public does not panic (for no one has gone missing in decades, thanks to the government and PEACE), and that the CEO is found, safe and unharmed.

You’ll be required to investigate crime scenes, analyse evidence, solve puzzles, observe, interrogate and deal with suspects and persons of interest, use your gadgets and tech to assist with the case, and even do a bit of fighting (if it has to come to it), both at range and in melee.

Do you have what it takes to solve the mystery; to complete the case, and impress your superiors? Or will you fail catastrophically and lead Lendar City into panic and chaos? It’s all on you, in P.E.A.C.E.

PLEASE NOTE: This game nowhere near being complete. It’s a WIP and will be for some time. What I have in mind is ambitious and time consuming, but will be worth it. So please, have a look at the demo version and tell me what you think. Is this something you think is worth continuing with? Comments, criticism, complaints, questions - I want them all!

Thank you for reading, and good luck, Agents!

P.E.A.C.E. Initial Demo:
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/120194843/web/mygame/index.html

Second Note: Although I have done fairly exhaustive testing, I’m sure there are some bugs that I have missed. I will continue to write and proof read my work, but as the author, sometimes I miss things that can be easily picked up on by unfamiliar readers. If you do encounter a bug, please let me know the nature of the problem and where it occurred in this thread.

Thanks!


#2

Very well written! Perhaps a quick typo spotting:

A minute later and back in the bedroom, your wardrobe opens up for you. “Work atire one,” you command… -> should be attire ?

“5am this morning, the maintenance guy comes in like usual,”… -> came in?

Also, I don’t know if you’re going to like this, but the setup / basic premise here is somehow unusually similar to what I’m working on, lol (I know, it happens every now and then among creators). With the exception of the futuristic background. I love intriguing sci-fi works with the scent of Minority Report on them. A few pages in, this is something I’ll want to play as a fully released title. Please keep it up.


#3

@Saracenar

Good work so far, curious to see where it goes. As far as your character it seems that they’re a perfect detective, I’m thinking that instead they maybe need a darker low point, maybe their most recent case causing them to go into a slump… However most still consider you the best. Also will there be possible romances? Or is it going to be more linear and steered away from that?


#4

A detective down on his luck getting a big case that’ll put him back on his feet? Isn’t that about the biggest cliche in the genre? Why can’t detectives be competent sometimes?


#5

Thanks guys! I’m so glad you liked what I’ve done so far.

@FcA The first one, I will correct, but the second, is more the way Bradley speaks than my own spelling/grammar. Thanks for pointing them out though - I hate spelling errors! It can be difficult to spot them when Notepad++ doesn’t have a spelling checker.

Great minds think alike, they say. I originally intended this to be a regular piece of writing, and not as a game. Only after I decided not to go with zombies did I dig this up from my old documents and realise that it could make a great game. Thanks for your feedback :slight_smile:

@TheFateReaper Mostly I’ve been focussing on the mystery aspect of the game so far in terms of planning, but I’m not against adding in romance options if that’s what popular opinion calls for (and if it is fitting, of course).

I wanted to showcase the player as a competent detective because the case is particularly high-priority and high-risk. They need as few people to know about it, so they pick from the best. Keep in mind also that the past cases you can review in the car, aren’t the only ones you’ve had. There is definitely room for failure in your past, and it may be highlighted later on. Thanks for your input :slight_smile:

@Shoelip I agree, as I explained above. I do want to avoid clichés, but I have a feeling there will be some I won’t be able to miss, later down the line. The matter of your competence as an agent, however, is not one such cliché. Thanks for your opinion :slight_smile:

As an aside, I’m interested in hearing about what players make of the mystery, and the mechanics, so far. What/who are you most interested in investigating first? Do you think you found all of the possible evidence? Did you find the time allotted to the office investigation adequate? What about the word puzzles? Are they suitable? Did the way I suggested potential theories seem invasive, or helpful? Would you rather I didn’t tell you what your character thinks?


#6

Well that password decryption is hilariously unrealistic. The decrypter thingie would be useless if not for the fact that the guy is terrible at coming up with passwords and just uses regular words with no symbols or numbers. Still, it would probably be very hard to come up with a more realistic alternative.

I’m interested in investigating the night club because it seems seedy.


#7

The word puzzle doesn’t necessarily represent his actual password or security methods, its just a way to have the player feel like they are doing something to break into the system, rather than have the device just do it for them.

I’m very much going to enjoy writing The Serpent. It was one of a bunch of my early ideas for set pieces that I had to include.

I should mention that it could be a little while before I do an update, because I’ll have to write scenes for the all the different options based on the evidence you can find.


#8

You have a great narrative style and ritm i fell like im part of a mixture of chandler and blade runner. But i dont like puzzle riddle im not english native and can figure out the password alone


#9

@MaraJade Thanks for your kind words. I was worried about the word puzzles for that exact reason. I’m not sure what to do about it besides getting rid of it though, and I’m not sure what I could put in its place.

I of course do not want to penalise people for not speaking English as their primary language. I’ll try and think of alternatives, but in the mean time you could use word unscramblers or translators (I know they are poor substitutes, so I will try and work a way around it).

Thanks.


#10

English is my first language but I still used an anagram solver I found on google.

https://www.google.com/search?q=Anagram+Solver&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

I liked the suggestions of potential theories, as I personally am not a detective, while my character is. We control the character’s actions, but they are not us, so there should be a bit of minor autonomy to help us play the character better.

Visiting The Serpent seems like it has the most potential for all sorts of interesting things to happen. Although I suppose you don’t want to have too many branches, but on the other hand, what’s a choice game without meaningful choices? Frustrating and pointless… Anyway, you could always do what @JimD had done and release the various individual sections for testing as you complete them. That way you can get the errors fixed and review criticisms of the individual sections one at a time instead of having to tackle everything at once after working for a really long time on all of it.


#11

That’s very true. I could just do that, couldn’t I…?

What I intend is for the story to be somewhat linear, but also not. Obviously certain scenes will have to happen, but they may play out differently, different characters may be present, or you might not find all of the clues. Some scenes may only occur if you’ve said the right things or found the right clues (for example, it is possible that you won’t know about The Serpent if you don’t do the right thing(s)).

I definitely want the choices to matter. And there will be big choices to make in the game. Hopefully they are difficult and engaging, but I have plenty of time to plan and tweak them.


#12

I suppose I should correct myself in that when I said meaningful choices, I meant meaningful consequences. Not necessarily negative, but you should be able to make choices that have a distinct noticeable effect on characters and events.


#13

Oh yes, I plan to have those. To what degree I am as of yet unsure, but I know how important real consequences are.


#14

It’s not a detective story without a little bit of cliché guys, but I completely understand what you guys are saying. However I think that all good detectives have that one thing that truly drives them, that gives them an edge, that makes them the ideal candidate for whatever job because people know that you can do it…

Ok so since you want to avoid cliché why not give players the option… Make them choose their own evil, make the players decide their driving factor…


#15

Looks interesting. I’ll follow this. =)


#16

Found an error:

line 1783: Non-existant command ‘selectable_if’

Otherwise interesting so far. :slight_smile:


#17

Hm, that’s actually an interesting concept. Have the player choose their character’s flaws… Although that could be done easily enough through the could of the game.


#18

@TheFateReaper I get where you’re coming from, but I hadn’t really considered giving the player character flaws in terms of their competence (or a dark past). I guess it would make them more interesting, instead of being a vessel for the player to simply interact with the world. I do think though that the character will have depth. And hey, I said there were some clichés I won’t be able to avoid, so they won’t all be out :slight_smile:

@RVallant Thanks! I’m glad you like it.

@ArchAngel950 Thanks, but I think I accidentally uploaded part of the code I am currently working on, which is naturally incomplete and error-laden. That should be remedied now.

@Shoelip / @TheFateReaper I could give it a try. Maybe have something Mass Effect style where you choose from one of three backstories? Or are you thinking it’d be something else?


#19

@Saracenar the background choices seems cool, and maybe can affect some habilities. For instance if you were a hacker in the university in the hacker attemps you know some letters order.


#20

Cliches are ultimately unavoidable, no matter what. There is no such thing as a truly original thought anymore. The trick is taking what has been used before and using it in a different, interesting way, or at least doing it better than most.

Plus, some cliches are just fun on their own, and are cliched for exactly that reason. Y’know the thing that appears in any cartoon with a katana in it, anime especially, where the main character strikes and it appears nothing has happened until either a few seconds pass or the character sheathes their sword, and then the other guy(s) falls apart? I love that. :smiley: