"Content-less" Online RPG Project - Starting Small(ish)

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  05 May 2013
"Content-less" Online RPG Project - Starting Small(ish)

Pre-note: Most of the info in the post below can be found on our website at http://www.divine-game.com/

If you've browsed any game dev boards for more than a day, you see your fair share of "I WANT TO MAKE AN MMO" and then the "YOU CAN'T ITS TOO HARD." So and so took 4 years with a full team.

We plan to change up that formula a bit. Project Divine is essentially a contentless MMO/Online-RPG based on the tagline “The most fun 5 levels you’ll ever gain.” Because it is indie-developed with very little funding, we’ll be using a “minimal-content” approach. Rather than focus on creating a full commercial game as most indie teams do (and fail), we’ll focus on creating an incredibly short, but fulfilling and feature-rich experience. In simple terms, the project only includes content for levels 20-25, giving players a good idea of what the game would be like were it a full game, but at the same time, saving massive amounts of development time that would be spent generating art assets for the other ~80 levels. The main goal of Project Divine is to have players finish the content we do provide and wish that there was more.

At this stage in development, most features are design goals, rather than planned features. Until we have our first gameplay video released, the easiest way to describe the game would be a mix between Diablo ( loot, multiplayer, character progression, etc), an MMO (multiple roles, extensive dungeons/boss fights), and Bastion (action combat rather than just click enemies)

Here's some of our design goals:

  • Unique, fluid combat system. No simple ‘hold down mouse button until dead; repeat’. Each consecutive mouse click performs part of a combo. Enemies also cast area of effect or power attacks that can be evaded.
  • Deep character customization on multiple levels, such as stats, skills, perks, etc, not “hit level 10, unlock X”.
  • Rewarding gameplay with constant improvement (frequent leveling), not “Do 100 quests to gain 1 skill point”
  • Give players a reason to repeat content outside of “This boss drops X and I need that.”
  • Multiple hordes of enemies at a time (a’la Diablo), not “only pull 1 mob at a time”
  • Revolutionized “holy trinity” of roles, including manually targeted and position-based healing/tanking, not just “click target frame, push Heal”
  • MMO-style dungeons and instances, including unique boss-fights that require multiple roles and proper positioning, not “face-tank and spam attack”
  • Battleground/Objective style PvP, not “simple duels”
  • Recreate magic of “OMG UNIQUE DROP” and “Trading Perf Hydra for 5 SoJs”, not “Paying 10k gold or $10 for X,Y,Z attributes”
  • Merge MMO-style community with lobby-driven games

Team Structure

Outside a temporary freelance programmer working on a quick gameplay prototype for us, it's just me currently. For reference, I do have a Comp. Sci. degree and know a fair bit of programming, but definitely nothing game related as I mainly do Microsoft scripting and .NET for my career. With that said though, I assure you it's nice to have a project manager who can semi-understand what you're doing 95% of the time.

Talent Needed

Creative Designer (Hobbyist only):

While I'll be handling most of the production and systems design, I'm terrible when it comes to the creative aspect. This spot would be filled by someone who has extensively played similar game-types and has experience doing creative design, including story-line and universe shaping. Experience in Art Direction is also a plus.

Programming (Hobbyist/Freelancer):

Project Divine is a UDK based project, meaning Unrealscript is the language of choice here. Experience with UDK is obviously a plus, however, it is fairly similar to C++, so if you have prior experience with any game engine, you'll likely pick this up extremely quickly. Networking or AI skills are a plus, but not at all requires.

Art Director (Hobbyist):

In a semi-permanent position like this, freelancing obviously doesn't work, but I may be willing to dish out a bit of funding for this considering the importance of this. I'd prefer it be filled by a 2D artist willing to consistently contribute. I have horrible eyes for art, so this position is primarily to ensure that as things become more developed, we stay consistent in our art direction via accurate prompts and descriptions.

Concept/2D Artist (Hobbyist/Freelancer):

One of our biggest needs currently is to define and shape the world Project Divine will be taking place in. This position is fairly open in direction and you'll not necessarily have specific prompts starting out (essentially, draw whatever you want), so being able to create on your own is a plus. As time passes and the direction is defined, prompts will grow more and more common.

3D Environment and/or Character Artist (Hobbyist/Freelancer, not immediate need):

Since we are in the early stages, there's not really enough detail or concepts to make it worthwhile to begin 3D art at this time. We do have a few weapon concepts that I wouldn't mind having started, but this is far from an immediate need. In simpler terms, I'm mostly only interested in extremely skilled hobbyists at this point just to fill the void. More funding will be applied to this as we flesh more and more out. I may make special exceptions.

Contact Method

Skype - CThomlison
E-mail - CThomlison@gmail.com

Compensation Plan

In some exceptional cases, I am willing to pay for work at indie (or less!) wages. Note, this is personally funded, not commercially. I'm always up for work/quote discussion, so feel free to contact me in any case.

As for hobbyists, everyone puts "you get money when game is released", but that never happens. You're probably not going to make money from this, but in the case that we happen to shake the foundations of the world, we'll figure it out when that stage gets closer.

Last Words
Again, our website can be found at http://www.divine-game.com. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

  05 May 2013
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