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Tim Schafer

Writing Update #3: Let's brainstorm Locations together!

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Ada Kaleh

"Ada Kaleh was a small island on the Danube populated mostly by Turks that was submerged during the construction of the Iron Gates hydroelectric plant in 1970"(wikipedia)

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I'm assuming that there will be two major worlds or locations (since it's about a girl and boy coming together (but what do I know...) Any who, the boy should live in a futuristic world where technology has become so advanced that people's interests and enthusiasm has become dull. Human nature has evolved to a point of no disagreement or conflict which obviously creates a boring society. The world should look mostly white and black and be overrun by pristine buildings of revolutionary architecture. The girl should live in a medieval world where fantasy and magic reigns and all of the normal humans (including the girl) must live in fear of magic and fantasy. The world should look overly bright or colorful and look similar to a children's book.

I like the idea of having two worlds that seem perfect and but the player realizes both worlds have extreme flaws. I feel like these two worlds represent two kinds of utopias, a perfect world for a child (magic) and a perfect world for an adult (technology). Having such a contrast may be cheesy but I think the dystopian elements creates a level of depth in the characters and societies.

Thanks!

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I just thought of a few more:

- On the inside of a dying star

- Or on the inside of a rainbow

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How about a dig at the digital age of today?

You could have the protagonist warp inside the internet which could be made of all sorts of weird and wacky digital environments. The internet can also be swarming with viruses, trojan horses and the like, with one touch affecting how the environment changes for the puzzles. For example, touching a trojan horse could warp the internet into an environment similar to the Trojan Horse tale of Greek Mythology. Viruses could transport you to a Zombie Apocalypse in modern day times. Adware can transport you inside TV ads (use universal company digs rather than products only available in the US, you'll get more laughs!).

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Before it's overlooked as a potentially good location idea:

In a Dialogue Tree.

ministers-tree-house-front-photograph.jpeg

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Quantum world. Things are in multiple states simultaneously until you interact with them, at which point they collapse into a single state. (Example: person is both happy and sad until you talk to them, at which point they become one or the other. Walking away for a little while causes them to go back to being both happy and sad.)

White Blood Cell training school -- Be the best leukocyte you can be! Train with the reconnaissance antibodies as they learn to recognize the enemy.

Love both of these.

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A zoo where humans are caged and plant families visit.

A botanical garden where all plants play poker and smoke cigars when all human visitors are gone.

An ice world where humans only inhabit the 2 poles of the planet (which have a green climate) and where those 2 poles have to communicate with pigeons and/or scouts/messengers.

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I'm sure it has probably been said before, but I am too lazy to read 48 pages of this thread.

I think it would be really interesting to have both characters go through some or all of the same locations, but the locations would look completely different depending on which character you are at the time.

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I'd hate to be the person who has to look at all 1209 (and counting) posts for ideas. (I'm too lazy to read 48 page threads without being paid to do it too!)

My other idea: Feudal Japan in around the time of Nobunaga Oda, where the Warlords are Whales, the Samurai are Lobsters, Ninjas are Starfish and Peasants are Salmon. They all fear the mighty chopsticks of Mt. Fuji.

I also approve of "White Blood Cell training school—Be the best leukocyte you can be! Train with the reconnaissance antibodies as they learn to recognize the enemy." from cwm9.

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level ideas...

underwater in front of a sleeping Cthulhu. lighting provided by the glow worm he's cuddling and one of those child star light things

where the UFO crashed for the roswell incident...not after it crashed, but now. where its essentially an abandoned farmland in the dry southwestern plains. it can look extremely ordinary, but once a puzzle is solved, the cab of an rusted out 50's ford truck lights up and transports you to an teleportation subway station...that appears to be designed from someone who grew up only on 80s comedies.

charles addam's house

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I really liked the level in Banjo Kazooie for the N64 where it changed between seasons and you had to solve puzzles by travelling between seasons. For example in winter the lake was frozen so you could walk on it. But it spring you could swim in the lake to get to a beaver's under water house. What you did in one season effected what happened in the next.

Seasons may also help the player keep track of how much time has elapsed in the game like the years in Grim Fandango. Plus if it is a boy meets girl story you can have a summer of love. :P

You could also throw in some climate change jokes / references.

There is also the possibility of doing a day/night puzzle location but I think seasons are better and create more interesting puzzles.

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-The inside of a cell (molecular)

-A sub-atomic world (cheating, you can do whatever you want and just claim its because it's sub-atomic)

-A flat world where you really can fall of the edge yet somehow water never runs out.

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A stage set up like Japanese shadow puppetry. Or how about an island constructed of piano keys, so that every step plays a subtle note?

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Trapped in some alien planet's TourisTown version of what they pop-speculate various Earthling environments would be like. Like those fake ghost towns one finds in some American western outbacks, only very twisted and bizarrely distorted by distance and by being seen thru alien eyes and brains. So you're surrounded by things that kind of resemble stuff you're used to, but don't do or act like they're supposed to...

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I really liked the level in Banjo Kazooie for the N64 where it changed between seasons and you had to solve puzzles by travelling between seasons. For example in winter the lake was frozen so you could walk on it. But it spring you could swim in the lake to get to a beaver's under water house. What you did in one season effected what happened in the next.

Seasons may also help the player keep track of how much time has elapsed in the game like the years in Grim Fandango. Plus if it is a boy meets girl story you can have a summer of love. :P

You could also throw in some climate change jokes / references.

There is also the possibility of doing a day/night puzzle location but I think seasons are better and create more interesting puzzles.

Like this one.

Because seasons return, you always have second chances for puzzles you did not solve. This implies that you need a device that changes seasons, otherwise you might be waiting a lot for the next season to start, without knowing for sure you have to - which would be too frustrating.

It must feel like time goes by incredibly fast if you have difficulty solving puzzles in this environment...

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- a world where plants cultivate and grow people and display them in pots and gardens, giving each other bouquets of people with extravagant hair styles

- having been shrunken you find yourself inside another person or animal, you have to make your way to the brain and jab parts of it with a stick in order to control the individual's movements and dialogue. I picture there being a 'brain room' with you looking out through the eyes, like this: cm1sB.png

- backwards fairytale world, all puzzles must be solved in reverse (eg: beautiful princess must be put to sleep, prince sent away, a garden of thorns grown around the castle). Alternatively, fairytales are strictly monitored and enforced, anyone getting a story wrong is kidnapped for some nefarious scheme

- counterfeit candy factory, everyone's favourite candy is being replaced by disgusting alternatives

- World of Protozoa! essentially a museum with empty exhibits, you are shown around by an overly enthusiastic, delusional curator

- Cave of the most foul beast: You are regaled with tales of dread regarding the vile creature that dwells within, it turns out to be a completely oblivious slug

- The weasel derby

- Sarcasm powered spaceship

- A world beneath ours, where the earth's core serves as their sun

- Alternate dimension P309 - everything is exactly the same except there are no raspberries

- You need an item from a kid's play area, but the kids keep beating you up

- Gardening superstore where the gnomes have revolted

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This might be a little late, seeing as I'm writing this only after having seen the latest update just a little while ago... but eh, here goes nothing -

-> A world of colors where everyone gets to decide on a color or a set of them that makes up who they are. You play as a young lad, who's trying to choose his own color, by traveling to different worlds. (yes, added a little more story that was necessary, but its what came to mind... in short, think a world divided by color schemes)

-> A world of wall paintings... Generic yes, but there are millions of styles to draw upon. I recently saw some in Rajasthan called Bundi along the walls of palace that seemed pretty interesting.

Reference - http://lh3.ggpht.com/-iwPBMu3w-k0/SrcRHIqLEMI/AAAAAAAAH5I/q4htOpTWZ0Y/IMG_8103.JPG

Reference2 - http://blogs.gonomad.com/wp-content/blogpics/traveltalesfromindia/Paintings-Chitrashala-Bundi-Rajasthan-752640.JPG

-> A world of old, forgotten gaming detritus and similar characters to inhabit it.

-> A lonely asteroid circling a gas giant like Jupiter, weaving past different moons. It'd definitely make the sky worth looking at.

-> For an abstract idea, different worlds based off the contents of people's backpacks... the player travels to different ones doing whatever it is that they're supposed to.

-> Candyland? I dunno... the boardgame just jumped into my head....

And maybe I need to stop here...

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I don't know how relevant this thread is at this point, but whatever. Imagine a desert landscape with dunes and whatnot but instead of sand the ground is made of a giant carpet. I was thinking a Berber carpet. A giant, hot, Berber carpet.

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How about in an ant colonony/Bee hive or a series of snow globes, that are all miniture themed worlds but are linked by a secret portal that you have to find/open through a series of puzzles

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I really liked the level in Banjo Kazooie for the N64 where it changed between seasons and you had to solve puzzles by travelling between seasons. For example in winter the lake was frozen so you could walk on it. But it spring you could swim in the lake to get to a beaver's under water house. What you did in one season effected what happened in the next.

Seasons may also help the player keep track of how much time has elapsed in the game like the years in Grim Fandango. Plus if it is a boy meets girl story you can have a summer of love. :P

You could also throw in some climate change jokes / references.

There is also the possibility of doing a day/night puzzle location but I think seasons are better and create more interesting puzzles.

Like this one.

Because seasons return, you always have second chances for puzzles you did not solve. This implies that you need a device that changes seasons, otherwise you might be waiting a lot for the next season to start, without knowing for sure you have to - which would be too frustrating.

It must feel like time goes by incredibly fast if you have difficulty solving puzzles in this environment...

To change seasons maybe you go to a witch's cabin in the woods and she asks you to take her caldron to the blacksmith for repairs and also fetch some ingredients. When you go to a new season you may have a new problem to solve to change it to another one. Or maybe you could just have the VODO lady and a juju bag quest again.

Alternatively you could just have it scripted that when you solve certain puzzles the seasons change.

You wouldn't have to just change the seasons though. You could do other things like needing to make it rain to break the doubt, which opens up a whole host of puzzles by changing the landscape of the world. Maybe you need to help a tribal Indian Shaman do a rain dance?

I just really like those moments in games when you get to re explore the world and everything is different because you did something good or the bad guys did something bad. Some examples are time travel in Zelda: Ocarina of Time or my Favorite Click Clock Wood in Banjo Kazooie (http://banjokazooie.wikia.com/wiki/Click_Clock_Wood)

The ClockWorkMan2 (http://theclockworkman2.com/) has a section at the end where the world is divided into four seasons but the only puzzle is taking ice from winter to summer to melt it. Sadly it is mostly hidden object adventure.

Also Sword and Socery has the phases of the Moon that you can change to alter the world. It also has going into the dream world. I think this game does a really good job of getting you to revist areas without getting sick of them.

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Just a few more locations

A taxidermists workshop,

My fridge ( just coz always wondered what goes on in there when I shut the door and the lights do out!)

or

a magic tattoists waiting room, the legend being that anything he tattoo's comes to life.

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1. A Kingdom that is divided into rings (sectors) of colors. It's not just the sectors that are colored, the people in each sector dress or imitate their color Example: The lower slums are a grey or dirty color, the next level ( higher Inner circle) is a brighter color like green or navy blue. The highest level where the royalty exists possess the most sacred secret color that none of the rest of the kingdom is allowed to see.

2. A theme park in the middle of a dark forest that isn't run by electricity, but the memories of all those who choose to ride the park's attractions. People get lost in the woods and happen upon the park. Once they've entered, they cannot leave because no matter which direction leave leave in, they always come back. (the time of day is always twilight)

3. A world that exists on a massive endless linear platform. Across the platform there are bubble enclosed cities that are created each and every year. Each year a new city automatically created further down the platform after the previous. Everyone has the option of traveling (on foot) to whatever city (time) they choose to live. There are nomads who are looked down upon for constantly moving forward from city to city each year and not living in the past.

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Before it's overlooked as a potentially good location idea:

In a Dialogue Tree.

ministers-tree-house-front-photograph.jpeg

You found my future house.

It does have some platformer potential. That house makes me want to use clairvoyance on squirrels... really it does.

It starts to seem a little like something from Lord of the Rings, but I love some intricate tree houses.

I love miniatures, too... Bonsai Tree Houses are the best of both worlds.

Check out these Bonsai Tree Houses with tiny houses: http://blog.craftzine.com/archive/2012/02/tiny_bonsai_tree_houses.html

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how about (ill go local) the inside of Ayers Rock (google it if you arent sure) its a huge rock in the middle of Australia proclaimed by the Aboriginals.

Also in the town of Alice Springs, they actually live underground to avoid the heat, so you could use an underground sort of town (tho this has been done before)

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I'm forever in love with Psychonauts, I won't apologize for that... but it had the most amazing levels any game ever had.

So when I think of what an awesome level looks like, I immediately gravitate toward memories of Psychonauts.

There have been so many great ideas suggested... I probably love all of them, I am a little tired of lava...

I'd prefer the game to have plenty of trees, at least for a good part of the game... I don't have many specific requests to make about the environments/levels.

What I've got in mind is a series of impressions...

I love to see environments that are influenced by: history, art, culture, psychology, etc... with some clever humor in the mix.

Shifts in: theme, lighting, color, proportions, landscapes, gravity, dimension, flora/fauna, even the type of environment (ie. under the sea, in the sky, in the trees, and sure ...ice world) ...those kinds of changes keep the levels refreshing... and the contrasts are just awesome. (Did I mention, it also makes me admire how clever you are...) ;-)

I have infinite and total faith in everyone to make something I'll love... I'm not even the least bit worried.

=-) <-------------- This is me (not worried)

Most of all, I really want easter eggs... some obvious, some cleverly hidden. Please drop in lots of little references to past DF games.

Muchos huevos de easter!!!! HUEVOS!!!!!!!!!

I am so excited about the artists you've enlisted... it's really a dream team... I can't overstate how wonderful they are to me & I just want them to do their thing. =-)

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-A Crayon Box (one with a sharpener on the back)

-A city made of dishes (clean china is the upper class and dirty dishes are the slums)

-A war between cleaning ladies and dirty hobos

-Forrest lands ruled by an evil squirrel and his acorn henchmen

-The inside of a laser pointer

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A bridge, that literally spans through space and time?

Oh! Inside a tornado! (actually I believe that's been done but not in a game)

On a spinning record, that is being listened to by an old lady on her death bed.(this seems overly grim).

And so many more possibilities!

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-Inside an android's head, and the alien/whatever that normally controls the body by using various levers (casually patched up with duct tape and chewed bubble gum), and mostly non-functioning buttons is absent.

-A giant's bookshelf supplemented with knickknacks and those really random souvenirs you buy when on holiday.

-The public pool for anthropomorphic animals (called the Watering Hole, because yeah I went there, and also I'm a huge fan of bad word play), or something else suitably strange, like non-waterproof electronic devices that feel like committing suicide by drowning.

-Somewhere where every word is taken very literally (e.g. a shoehorn as a horn that attaches to your shoes for really creative accessorizing, a dumbbell that is an intellectually challenged bell, etc.).

-A place where every object is replaced by a children's toy version that is completely useless.

I realize these got really specific and detail oriented, so here are a few more basic ones:

-Someplace with no straight lines. Or only straight lines. (combine with some other suggestion?)

-A waterpark. Just straight up. Those things are awesome.

-A colouring book.

-The post office.

-An anthill or other suitable insect habitation.

-A flow chart/business presentation.

-This one may have been said already, but a computer desktop?

-A Toll Booth.. for like a national park or something.

-A big-name coffee-shop on a spaceship.

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I was following this thread for a while in the beginning but lost track. My suggestions come from where I grew up and still live today. I live in the northern part of Colorado which has High pine forests, large peaks, red canyons sprinkled in between, and flat plains to the east. What I think would be a great location is:

-Snow covered red canyons - if you have ever lived in an area like this the red rock formations covered in snow a very beautiful (I still take a drive up the canyon in the winter just to look at them)

-A canyon area with sharp rock formations (best example would be http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kasha-Katuwe_Tent_Rocks_National_Monument this area is probably my best memory from my childhood, when the wind blows it makes an eerie whistling sound)

-A large open plain with that one large old tree that just doesn't seem like it could even exist in such a landscape (seems kind of bland but it's always something that makes me stop and look a while)

-Deep in a high pine forest with a small cabin that looks as old as the trees around it.

-A mountain range that is divided by water that sprawls almost endlessly off into the horizon (when I was in Alaska looking out into the cook inlet the mountains looked like they went on forever.)

-A hill side looking out on the thousands of lights of a distant city that dot the landscape

Hopefully I didn't steal anyone's ideas as I haven't been able to read through all these posts yet.

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Wow, what a long post, so forgive me if similar ideas have been already posted:

A dream location but not over the top like inception etc. It could have more subtle dream characteristics, e.g. that some objects change but without you noticing it first (like going to the right and then back to the left but some things are different now). The puzzle logic should be especially weird in that place, things which never fit together do suddenly. So that it doesn't become too frustrating, puzzles should be able to be solved with e.g. every item or at least with many options, even if it does not really make sense but after all it's a dream so it's normal.

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