|This article is written from the Real Life point of view|
Metroid concept doc:
This is an "idea document" I was tasked to create during the end of Metroid Prime's development. It goes over a basic story line, new player mechanics, and new enemy and boss characters. I would like to give credit to Andrew "Android" Jones for providing the concept art.
Metroid 1.5 Design Concept
Single player Mission Pitch (11.18.02)
A New section regarding co-op multi-player gaming
(An Update 11.26.02)
New Enemy types (Genetic Experiments) 12-03-02
New Melee attack for Samus 12-03-02
Power-up System (and its cruel trick) 12-03-02
Text: Tony Giovannini Creature Art: Andrew Jones
This adventure would take place immediately after Samus takes off from the surface of Talon IV. Upon exiting the planets surface, Samus decides to take a long rest in her Cryo chamber as her ship autopilots home. However, something goes wrong and Samus’s ship computer hones in on a distress signal. The distress signal is coming from a huge alien vessel (huge like the size of several Star Destroyers) that is drifting out in space. As Samus’s ship approaches the alien craft, a tractor beam activates and the Ship is pulled into one of the gigantic docking bays. As the ships doors close, the gigantic vessel folds and enters a parallel dimension, thus begins Samus’s new adventure…
Upon awakening, the ship appears to be abandoned, there is no power except for auxiliary lights and telemetry from computers. It is up to Samus to unravel this mystery. The mystery being that the ship’s AI has gone mad and the ship is actually a war vessel that is on a collision course with a peaceful planet. It’s goal? The entire enslavement of the race of beings on said planet as well as natural resource stripping as its (the planets) destruction. So in essence, the ship AI has split into several different personalities, and is playing a deadly game with Samus. The Alien inhabitants of the ship are also in a state of suspended animation because as the ship travels through the parallel dimension, the alien inhabitants are being created and refined for warfare until the ship arrives at its destination and assaults the planet…However, the robotic and automated entities are not, these will be the primary enemies that Samus must deal with. In addition, Samus must also deal with the ships cunning AI, who will all the while be taunting her and trying to trick her at every opportunity.
The Main reason Samus and possibly other Bounty Hunters are being pulled into this ship is to assimilate their best and most deadly abilities into the personality construct of not only the ships AI, but also into the actual Alien Inhabitants in order to further their quest for perfection. As the ship reaches its target, it will unfold into this dimension and begin its attack. This has what the ship and Alien race who created it has have been doing for past thousand or so years, going from planet to planet, assimilating the most violent parts of a culture and asserting it into its own being.
The main goal for Samus is to disable the engines of the ship, destroy the AI, and eradicate all life forms on the ship. The catch is that even though Samus is all powerful from her previous item acquisition on Talon IV, she will be limited to use them in certain areas of the ship due to the containment matrix that the Rogue AI has set up all over the ship. This will force the player to handle situations differently than expected, and once the containment matrix is disabled, Samus will be free to use all of her abilities. Due to being in a parallel dimension, there are areas within the ship where floors may become ceiling due to gravity being reversed, Time may run backwards, (illustrated by creatures and machines moving in reverse, water moving up into a faucet) and other sorts of environmental weirdness, that Samus as well as other Bounty hunters will have to learn to adjust to in order to survive.
The ship will take up the same real estate as the ruins and mines combined. These are two of the largest levels in the previous game and I think that by combining the size of the two, we will have a healthy amount of game space to course though. In addition, we can further expand the 2.5D ball mode areas and expand the scanner game play. I guess this adventure would be more about solving puzzles (scan mode) and utilizing alternative methods of navigation (ball mode).
• Hangar bays where Samus can actually go inside transport and fighter vessels.
• Science bays where Samus could gather information about the Alien Race’s grotesque scientific experiments.
• The super structure of the ship where ball mode would be utilized much more than the previous game.
• The computer core where Samus would have to destroy the rogue AI.
• Cryo Chamber hall, where Samus shuts down life support to the hostile alien race
• Industrial factory section, where all weapons of war are made, lots of conveyor belts and mechanical machinery would make for challenging navigational game play.
• On the surface of the ship out in space, which could make for some interesting low gravity or spider ball game play
• Robot factory section, where Samus would have to sabotage the machinery that is responsible for the creation of all robotic entitles on the ship.
• Robot control HQ; here Samus could control robots in various sections of the ship via remote monitor.
• Communications array, which Samus has to destroy in order to stop the onslaught of other ships heading towards the planet. Perhaps she could divert the signal to the other ships so they collide into a near by sun, who knows.
• Reactor Core, the final area of the game where Samus sets the ship to self-destruct by overloading the engines.
• Using the scan visor to shut down various security measures within rooms or to activate a robot via remote control.
• Using the X-ray visor to detect invisible enemies, hidden areas, and other things not visible to the naked eye, much like our previous game.
• Using the thermal visor to detect hidden switches, panels, and possible dangers, much like in our previous game.
In addition to the above examples, there could be a lot of deactivating electronic locks ala system shock and Deus Ex, manipulation of factory machinery to allow access into otherwise unreachable areas, and manipulation of turrets and security systems to overcome certain enemy based setups and situations.
Since the inhabitants of the ship are in Cryo sleep, the majority of enemies will be Robotic. Robotic allows us to rely on shaders as opposed to texture maps, they are all metal after all, they can be tougher that organic life forms, have more predictable AI patterns, and allow the artists to go crazy with the design. In addition, Robots will chunk better because they are metal. The biggest AI threat in the entire adventure however, is the Rogue AI that taunts Samus throughout the ship. Taunting by locking previously unlocked doors, filling a room with poison gas, activating security systems, and machinery in the factory/industrial levels.
• Drones, simple security drones that patrol the halls, can call in for back up if a threat appears. Usually cloaked, Samus will have to utilize her X-ray visor to see them
• Workers, Tread based movement, slow and heavy industrial bots that can utilize different tools, Flame throwers, jack hammers, drills for work as well as to stop a potential threat.
• Hunters, Bi-pedal assassin droids that can drop from ceilings, run up walls, and utilize an electro blade, imagine iG-88 hopped up on too much caffeine with a really angry disposition.
• Guards, heavy brutish hover bots armed with cannons. Used primarily as sentry guards, very tough, requires thermal visors in order to hit the sweet spot and destroy them.
• Mad AI, the central computer of the ship has gone crazy, it sees inviting Samus onto the ship as a game for its amusement. Will taunt and try to trip Samus up at every move. The Mad AI has four distinct personalities…The Child, The Killer, the Martyr, and the Fool… each one is deadly and utilizes different tactics and techniques.
The intent of this document is to illustrate the four distinct personalities of the AI construct and how it will affect game play. Personality types, and their unique traits will break down the list. In addition, the AI personality type “The Fool” has been replaced with “The Mother” due to the fact that “The Child” and “The Fool” were too similar. The AI and its four personalities would appear at certain intervals of the game in a form of a hologram that although appears to have depth from a forward view, but is actually paper thin, imagine a Sprite that is always facing you, but occasionally, you catch a glimpse of its side, and you’ll get the idea. Although the AI is Alien, it appears in human form and “speaks” using English in order for Samus to understand it.
- • Combat heavy game play style, larger number of enemy spawns than usual, less drops for killed creatures. Security systems (turrets, for example) would be more deadly than normal. The more players involved in the game, they heavier the amount of enemies.
- • Atmosphere of the environment when “The Killer” AI is in control would consist of strobing lights, red lights, and lots of fog. Camera function would distort at times or fish eye, causing the player to become disoriented, similar to Silent Hill and Eternal Darkness. In addition, there would be darkened areas of the ship that would play into the fear factor of the player, and force them to use their visor mode.
- • The Killer would taunt the player with a voice similar in tone and inflection to Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter, and “Alex” from A Clockwork Orange.
- For all intensive [sic] purposes, “The Killer” is much more combat oriented than the 3 other personality types. The feeling the player should get from “The Killer” is that they are being stalked like prey. It has a serial killer mentality and will stop at nothing to end its victim’s life.
- • Puzzle heavy game play style, more emphasis on puzzle solving and scanning, and less combat. Since “The Child” is Playing, it will occasionally react by reactivating security systems, re-locking doors, and trapping the player where necessary, all in the name of (deadly) fun. Possible “Simon Says” like sequences, for example.
- • Atmosphere of the environment when “The Child” AI Construct is in control would consist of softer and warmer light values. (Similar to night-lights?) Not too many shadowed places due to the fact that children for the most part, are scared of the dark. Another way we could describe the lighting, would be carnival like, sort of a “Dark Disneyland.”
- • “The Child” would communicate with the player in a child’s voice as well as communicate in rhymes and songs. The voice of this AI construct would be similar in tone and inflection to Damien from the Omen, and the kid from that movie, the 6th sense. Interestingly enough, “The Child” becomes scared when the player enters a dark room or area heavily cast in shadow.
- “The Child” AI construct is the exact opposite of the “The Killer”. Its focus is puzzle based and relies less on using physical enemies to stop the player. At times, perhaps “The Child” AI construct could be used as a hint system to guide the player when they become lost. Although the “The Child” AI construct thinks its playing and having fun, its puzzles and games are still deadly. Imagine a crazed child swinging around an Axe, it’s having fun, but doesn’t realize he/she could really hurt someone.
- • “The Mother” is the “core” as well as the helper AI. Out of all four personality types, this one is the most friendly of the bunch. “The Mother” AI could be used as a crucial Plot device which gives Samus and other bounty Hunters technological upgrades when completing a puzzle. Game play wise, “The Mother” is a helper, while the action going on around the players is a combination of The Child and The Killer, 50% combat, and 50% puzzle.
- • Atmosphere of the environment when “The Mother” AI Construct is in control is womb-like, orange and yellow lights fill the area and a heartbeat can be heard in the background.
- • “The Mother” Knows something is wrong with either her or the ships computer, (it has become detached from it self) but feels overwhelmed and helpless. When the Bounty Hunters arrive, she senses that they could possibly right the situation.
- “The Mother” construct would communicate with the players in a soothing voice, ‘ala SAL (2010) and EVE (Command and Conquer)
- “The Mother” AI, is used as the core and helper though out the game. It can be used for item acquisition, technological advancement, relay back story and offer clues and hints, almost like a redundant hint system but with personality. Another interesting factor regarding “The Mother” it will always pick a favored bounty hunter, much like a favored son or daughter. This could be randomized, so every time the game is started from the beginning, it chooses a bounty hunter at random.
- • “The Martyr” is one of the boss battles in the game, and perhaps is the most deadly of all of the AI constructs due to the fact that “The Martyr’ has the burden of successfully completing its mission. (The mission could be ramming into a planet, if it was the brains for a gigantic spaceship, or self destructing if it were the main operations for the base, for example) Fighting this boss could go a few different ways. Destroy the main reactor/CPU? Shut down the system based on teamwork along the lines of mission impossible? Perhaps the AI manifests itself in physical form. There are a lot of options we can explore.
- • Atmosphere of the environment when “The Martyr” AI construct is in control would be one of decay and ruin. Sparks are flying off machines, tons of smoke, auxiliary lights being only light source, machines failing left and right, camera shakes and toppling geometry are the norm.
- • “The Martyr” has a personality that is a cross between the MCP from Tron, Shodan from System Shock 1 and 2, and Col. Kurtz from Apocalypse Now. It fully believes in its mission and will stop at nothing to complete it. It also is righteous in its beliefs and has a tendency to scream at the top of its lungs, spewing out all sorts of nonsensical diatribes and riddles.
- “The Martyr” is the Head Honcho of the AI construct; this is what the AI eventually will eventually turn into, as opposed to its other forms. “The Martyr” also has master control over every aspect of the ship, its security system, and can use anything at its disposal to try and stop the player.
New Enemy Types:
Several new Enemy types have be created in order to facilitate the idea of the genetic experiments the alien race are conducting:
- • Humetroid: Standing roughly 6 feet tall the Humetroid is a half metroid / half human entity that excels in stealth, sabotage, scouting, and long distance kills. It has a detachable metroid in its chest that can be dispersed in order to attack enemies from a distance and scout an area. Once the metroid is released, the Humetroid body cloaks and the player will have control of the metroid. Because of they symbiotic nature between the Metroid and the Humetroid body, if one is killed, the other will perish.
- •Because of its ability to absorb energy from other players and creatures, the Humetroid can also temporally gain an opponents ability
- • Thrash-hunters: Standing 8 and 1/2 feet tall, this Alien is a mixture between a Space Pirate and another unknown Alien species. It uses no mechanical weapons but does use its sharp saber-like claws to rip though opponents with ease. It can walk along walls, crawl across ceilings and has a chameleon like ability to change its exoskeleton color and pattern to match up to its surrounding environment. It is ruthless and cunning, much like Giger’s Alien; it lives to kill, and kills to live.
- • In addition to its saber-like claws the Thrash-hunter also has the ability to self-destruct when low on heath and when in clear and visible danger. The blast radius would kill anything within a 20-foot radius.
- • Shock beast: Standing 10 feet tall, the shock beast is another Space Pirate / Alien Hybrid. It is similar to storm troopers in respect to its loyalty and stupidity. It is the standard shock trooper of the Alien fleet and carriers a high-powered pulse rifle and frag-grenades. In addition to mechanical weapons, it can also self-destruct when in danger or low on health. Again, the blast radius would kill anything within a 20-foot radius.
- • Due to a genetic flaw, the heart and lungs (on its backside) of the shock beast are exposed, making it an easy kill. Since the ship’s AI has noticed the design flaw, later versions have an armored carapace that must be destroyed in order to hit the vital areas, much like the Baby Sheegoth.
In order to keep the momentum of the game moving there are several things we can do:
- • Limit Samus’s abilities in certain areas and rooms of the ship, thereby forcing the player to deal with situation differently than expected.
• Increase the amount of morphball areas so we can try new ideas and concepts that we can bring into Metroid 2. I think a lot of people thought that the morphball rooms were some of the most fun in the game, lets crank it up to 11.
- • The Mad AI, we can do all sorts of things to block progress. Lock doors, activate security systems, and fill rooms with deadly gasses or electrical fields…
•Controlling robots, from the Robot control HQ, Samus would have the ability to remote control robots in order to create diversions, navigate a setup, and gain access to areas that are otherwise un attainable.
•Mecha Samus, see below.
At a certain point of this adventure, Samus could have the opportunity to create an Android double of herself. In single player she can give it simple commands and it will fight along side her. Perhaps we can even have a side quest on the ship where you have to retrieve the necessary components in order to create Mecha-Samus. There has been something I have been thinking about for a while…What if we had the ability for any other player to control the co-op AI, at anytime? For example I start playing a game, and I have my Mecha double with me, Zaf comes over, and picks up the second controller, the screen would split in real time (see War of the monsters) and now Zaf can control the Mecha double for as long as he wishes. As soon as he puts the controller down and there is more than 10 seconds of no controller input, the screen would go back to full screen mode in real time. Sounds difficult to pull off, but maybe not.
As of last weeks design meeting, we were asked to further develop our multi-player and co-op ideas. Here are several ideas that would work great with this adventure.
Since the ship’s AI has lost the plot, I figure it would be interesting if the AI called in several other bounty hunters through out the galaxy all for the same purpose, a deadly game for the AI’s amusement. What makes this interesting is the fact that these other bounty hunters arrive at the same time as Samus. They can either work together or against each other, what it boils down to is a game of trust or deceit. Are the players going to work together, or against each other? Of course, we should try our best at least at the initial start of the game to force the players to work together. How do we as designers force them to work together? Here are a couple of ideas…
- • Limit the abilities of all Bounty Hunters in order to force them to work together. This will cancel out them trying to trying to destroy each other in the beginning of the game. As the bounty Hunters grow more powerful, they then can decided weather to work together or not.
- • Give the Bounty Hunters different abilities… One Bounty Hunter could be an expert at disabling security systems, another could be an expert with hacking systems to overcome puzzles, another could be a heavy weapons expert, while Samus of course, is a natural born leader with her varied weapon systems, morphball mode, and visors. This is what I consider “Star Wars” style of team management… everybody who made up the core group of the rebel heroes had different skills and abilities, but they had to work together to gain results.
- • Start the Bounty Hunters in different sections of the ship and allow them to find each other. This would only work online, due to the fact we cannot stream for different locations at once. Capcom is working on an online Resident Evil for Play-station 2, which will allow up to eight players to start at different locations of the game world, and to succeed, they need to first find each other. If we decide to support Internet link, I would really like to see something like this, I think it could be a lot of fun.
I think that the additional Bounty Hunters, if they aren’t clones of Samus, need to be memorable and unique. They need their own specific weapons, their own “ball” mode, and that certain something that makes them a likeable character. I have no doubt that we could create some cool stuff, but we have to ask ourselves, will this still be a metroid experience?
Another route we could go…Samus and a group of Bounty Hunters are hired by the federation to explore this vessel drifting though space and take care of the problem by “any means necessary”. Again, this would require teamwork, but instead of a game of trust and deceit, it’s a game of teamwork where all the players are Allies…similar to the troops in Halo. Again, the main focus of this game is teamwork. By having bounty hunters utilize their different abilities to solve puzzles and progress through the game, we could insure a rewarding Multi-player experience. Also, as Mike W, stated in the design meeting, this would insure multiplayer by limiting progression for a single player.
What that in mind, we can focus on “Mission Impossible” styles of missions where teamwork and timing are crucial to success. When I reference Mission Impossible, I am referring to the television show of the 60’s, and not the Tom Cruise Mega-hit movies. Types of missions would include:
- • Hacking into and disrupting dataflow at several key locations through out a ship or base in order to clear a level goal. In order to succeed, the players would have to hack the computers in sequence and upload a virus or some sort of malignant program at the proper moment. Missions like these could also have a time limit, thus creating tension.
- • Placing charges on certain mechanical structures of the base/ship and setting the timers off that the proper moment, then as the timers are counting down, the team makes a daring escape to avoid being blown to bits. Again, this is another mission where timing is crucial to the success of the mission.
- • Space Marines vs. Giant Bugs: We have pretty much all seen or read Starship Troopers…Exe what about missions where Alpha beetles are coming from all directions, and the squad has to work together in order to defeat them? Sure, its mindless fun, but its also very satisfying at the same time.
- • Artifact retrieval: four artifacts are spread throughout a map and must be brought to a central totem/location to be utilized. The team must split up and find the artifacts on their own, since each Bounty Hunter has his or her own unique abilities, we could custom tailor each path. This would also increase replay-ability due to the fact that the right Bounty hunter would have to use the right path. If there is one path, to claim the artifacts, the bounty hunters could work together to get past obstacles…exe… locked door, morphball tunnel to other side…Samus has to go through, and unlock the door from the other side, to let the rest of the Bounty Hunters though
Focusing on Co-op multiplayer, would be wise considering it’s basically a single player style of game and mission-base that will scale up in difficulty depending on the number of players, similar to Diablo and Phantasy Star online. Missions like this can be a lot of fun due the fact that creature encounters would become more intense as the number of players increase.
I think this is one aspect where multiplayer would really shine…the difficulty of the boss would multiply depending on the number of players. In addition, the boss can now have several hot spots all over its body; it’s almost a Ghost Busters-like approach. Similar to Panzer Dragoon 2, the bosses have hot spots all over their body and are only affected by certain weapons at certain sides; this again would require teamwork. Once a boss is defeated, we can put that boss into the Un-lockable game modes, where a player can now control a boss and the other players try to defeat it. Of course the UI would be unique to the boss, and the player controlling the boss, would have all the bosses unique powers and abilities at his or her disposal.
Upon completion of the main game, there are several modes that can become unlocked. I would like to keep these separated from the main game because it will insure that, 1. Players will complete our game, and 2. The un-lockable multi-player modes will give the player some semblance of a reward, as well as increase playability. Here are some examples of modes that the player can look forward to:
- • Arena Death Match: Similar to Quake, Unreal Tournament, Golden Eye, Perfect Dark, Halo. Arena style maps with a circular travel patters. Pickups regenerate in specific locations and the winner is the player with the most kills at the end of the time limit.
- • Team Arena Death Match: similar to the above, but teams would be two on two, or more, depending if we utilize Internet play. Similar rules and conditions.
- The rest of these are from a previous list I created, but I figure they would work here as well…please disregard the bot reference.
Two teams have a containment unit; there is a single metroid in the map at a hidden location. The object is to capture the metroid and bring it back to your base/ship. The catch? The containment unit has a time limit that activates once the metroid is captured. In addition, the containment unit is super fragile, don’t get it damaged…Oops, you did? Damn, it self-destructs when hit…wiping out anything within its short range vicinity… Damn…What a drag…
- • Bot or Human players permitted
• Split screen
• Goal is to get the metroid back to your base/ship
• Several different styles of maps can be used for this scenario (spaceship graveyard, industrial area, artic style bases)
• If containment unit is destroyed, the match resets. The team that destroyed the containment unit gets the pointage.
Ultimately this would be a great game style for Internet play, if we decided to support it.
An arena Battle style game where you boost up into the chest plate of a gigantic ancient looking robot beast. Once inside the chest plate the robots become active. Once active you can beat the hell out of each other ‘till the cows come home.
- • Up to human 4 players, no bots, simple brawler style combat, robots are heavy and slow
• Goal is to be last robot standing, once your bot gets destroyed, you self-destruct.
• Single screen or split, depending on size of arena, although single screen would more than likely suffice.
• Damage is shown by chunks of metal flying off robot bodies and limbs dropping off
• No projectile weapons, just punches, arm flailing, and kicks.
Left analog: Forward, back, left, right
Right analog: arm flail clockwise or counterclockwise depending on which way you are rotating
A button: Punch
B Button: Kick
Two Teams, Two bases, several hot points in each base, and a bunch of timed detonators. Requires teamwork and finesse, because they are all timed to go off at the same time, whenever one is placed. Pray that you don’t have it on you and you’re off the base.
- • Bot or Human player permitted
- • Split screen
- • Goal is to destroy the other teams base
- • Once one detonator is activated, they ALL activate. This game-play style requires team work so all detonators can be placed at the same time, mission impossible style.
- • The first team that destroys the others base wins.
One-player controls an omega Pirate, the others control bounty hunters. This is basically a remake of the Omega Pirate battle in the singer player game, only this time, its multiplayer and could be a bit more intense
- • Bot or Human player permitted
- • Split screen
- • For the Omega Pirate’s UI, the camera will be raised significantly to emphasize height
- • Omega Pirate can call in support of trooper pirates and recharge via phazon.
- • A multi-player variant on the boss battle from the single player game, we could use the same arena or create a new one.
Sort of like a really violent Marble Madness meets bumper cars, with morphballs, explosions, fire, pain, suffering, humiliation, and you know, hurting your friends and stuff.
- • Up to human 4 players, no bots
- • Goal is to be the last ball standing.
- • You can boost into other morphballs to knock them out of the way, into a pit, or deadly obstacle
- •No power bombs.
- • Occasionally, heath drones will fly over-head, use half pipe sections or bomb jump to grab them.
- • Arenas are on a single screen, no split, Shaped like skating pools and half pipes.
- • There are deadly obstacles in the arenas, similar to the Battle-bots TV show, flamejets, buzzsaws, as well as lava pits that the player can fall into.
Samus’s new Melee attack involves her beam weapon arm to utilize several quick strikes upon enemies. Similar to the “weapon smash” attack in Halo, this attack would be used to knock out enemies, kill them silently, and just for plain old fun. Since we never run out of ammo in our game, this attack is simply another move, but could be used as bragging rights in multiplayer games and for stealth attacks in single player games. Controls would allow the player to use the left analog in conjunction with the attack button to pull off different moves.
- Move List:
- • Arm Smash: A simple arm strike onto the head of an opponent in an up and down or side-to-side motion. Motion is dependant on
- • Elbow smash: Similar to the Maui-Thai style of fighting, Samus now has the ability to cause a devastating blow with a diagonal elbow smash. She will be able to strike in a diagonal upward or downward motion.
- • The right hook: A standard right hook punch, can be used in conjunction with a weapon for “smash and blast” action.
- • Crash Drill: A charge button, 360 degree spin attack used when enemies are rushing from all sides, knocking enemies back and away from her and allowing time to fire of a few rounds from a beam weapon.
Some Ideas Regarding the power-up system; through out the ship there are stat-bot stations that were initially used by the robotic crew to programmatically “learn” new things for different tasks. Samus, or any other bounty hunter for that matter, can hack into the stat-bot and use it to gain new abilities. However, whenever a Bounty Hunter learns a new ability, the Bounty Hunters genetic information gets downloaded to the Ship’s AI, which in turn will send it to the grow tanks for the developing species.
In essence, once the player realizes that its own information is being used to create this species, the player may opt to not use the stat-bots, knowing that their own innate abilities will be used against them. In a way, it creates its own balancing act and allows dynamic interaction with the enemies and the game world, and also adds a bit of customization. Types of stats/skills could include;
In addition, Bounty hunters innate abilities once downloaded, could be used by other bounty hunters. For Example, once Samus Genetic Information is learned, Aliens and Bounty Hunter alike could learn to Morph ball and bomb skill set. All this can boil down to perhaps having an end boss become an EVIL SAMUS. Much like fighting yourself in the old Sega Genesis Game, Budokan, and of course, Metroid Fusion…
Overview: Samus has received a mission to go an extract a dangerous criminal and return him/her back to the federation, dead or alive. The catch is that this enemy is hiding out at a spaceport, (Think Mos Isley) in one of the bars/nightclubs with heavy backup. (Bodyguards) Samus will not only have to stealthily track and capture the criminal, but also kill off the bodyguards, and keep civilian casualties as low as possible. The feel of this mission should be 1 part “Metal Gear Solid”, 1 part “Boba Fett” action, and 1 part Hong Kong Cinema.
Location: The location of the spaceport could be either on a planet in a sectioned off part of a city or alternatively, within a space station. The nightclub/bar would have one main room, and several smaller rooms adjoining it. The main room is multi-level with banisters running around the balcony. On the 2nd and 3rd floors, of the nightclub, there are also bridges that cris-cross above the bar. Below are several illustrations of the nightclub, and surrounding areas. In addition, a cut-away revealing the pipe system within the walls of the building.
In addition to the multi-leveled main bar there are thee adjacent rooms, (dance floors?) a small exterior space outside the nightclub, and within the walls of the building, is a network of pipes that are large enough to allow morphball travel. Samus would be able to use the morphball to travel through these pipes, as an alternative way to gain access to other rooms of the nightclub, without walking through the front door.
Single Player Scenario:
- •Find a way into the nightclub un-detected; the criminal’s bodyguards will be patrolling heavily around the building.
- • Systematically take out all of the criminal’s bodyguards. (Cannot go in guns blazing because of the possibility too many civilian casualties, one civilian dies = mission failure)
- • Once inside the nightclub, locate the criminal (Possible use of X-ray visor to see the criminal’s true self, could possibly be in disguise.)
- • Once the criminal is located, capture him/her by any means possible, remember, the federation wants this criminal dead or alive.
- • If all conditions are met for this mission, it is considered a success.
Multi Player Mini-games and Scenarios:
- • Riot Squad! : A riot is taking place inside and outside of the nightclub, up to 4 Bounty Hunters have to go in and pacify the rioters. (The Rioters are some sort of generic type of enemy that will come in waves) The winner of the mini game is the Bounty Hunter with the most kills at the end of the game.
- • Control Point! : A timed mini-game where up to 4 Bounty Hunters have to activate control points on the map, (go up and scan them) in order to control the most points and get the biggest score. Basically, its death-match with areas of control, similar to “Domination” in UT. The winner of the mini game is the Bounty Hunter
- • Protect the Celebrity! : A controversial Android Pop-Star has finished a performance in the nightclub, and needs to get out of the spaceport alive. The Pop-Star has had numerous death threats, as well as a maniacal fan-base. Your job as the Bounty Hunters is to protect the Star at all costs and get him/her/it back to its manager’s ship, which is orbiting off world.
- • Object Race! : A timed mini-game where up to 4 Bounty Hunters must race through the Night club, its sub structure (morphball travel), and surrounding areas to acquire as many objects (TBD) as possible before the timer runs out. A simple race/treasure hunter style of game with no killing other players involved. Although, the weapons each bounty Hunter has in their possession could be used to knock back a player away from an object, freeze a player, knock an object out of the way from a player, or pull an object towards a player.
- • Bottle Blast! : Hundreds of bottles are lined up along the bar, each Bounty Hunter will have a chance to destroy as many bottles as they can in one minute. The bounty under can use any weapon or technique available. The winner is the Bounty Hunter with the most destroyed bottles at the end of the game.
The Above illustration shows a cut-away of two levels of the nightclub. On the interior and exterior walls of the nightclub are air vents that can be blown apart with a morphball bomb, once the screen is blown away, the player now has access to the air-vents which will push the ball up though different levels and areas of the building. To switch things up a bit, especially in multi-player mode, we can have the air vents work on a timer basis or a switch basis, so when some are active, some aren’t.
So this is pretty much what I think we could crank out in a year, A Smaller Adventure with expanded mechanics and a few new ones thrown in. The beauty of spaceship design is that a lot of corridors and hub rooms can be reused over and over again, with minor variation; it also lends itself well to our room/door/hall layout. Plus, we can make the world denser by exploiting the super structure of the ship using morphball mechanics. Even though the idea of an AI gone mad has been used before in games as well as films, I feel that we could put a unique twist on it. And by allowing Samus to use only certain abilities in certain parts of the game, we can get a fair amount of replay value by offering the player different solutions to a single problem. This I feel would satisfy gamers who completed Prime and are hungry for something more with a few new mechanics and ideas thrown in.
With the addition of the co-op multi-player components I have noted in the previous paragraphs, I feel that we would still have a game that feels like Metroid, albeit the feeling of Isolation would no longer be there, at the expense of the multi-player experience. However, I think the by unlocking the additional multi-player modes, after the actual game is completed, it wont detract from the experience. Unlike Time Splitters 1 and 2, we can keep the player focused on the main portion or adventure of the game which is what Metroid is all about.