As promised, I’m still in the Liberated Pixel Cup. After abandoning (hopefully not forever) my previous project due to lack of time, I’m now officially declaring my new one – it will be smaller in scope to allow me to finish it in the little time remaining, but I believe it has a lot of potential.
The game will be called Terramancers, and it’s based on a game idea I tried to develop a few months ago with an artist I met, but it didn’t reach anything beyond basic planning. Here’s the concept:
Basically, the game is kind of a real-time action-Reversi. You and your opponent each have a character associated with a certain terrain type. You start in a grassy arena, and each of you, simply by walking, can alter the tile under you to your terrain type. Like in Reversi, if you alter a tile which has a straight line connecting it to another tile that already has your terrain type, all other tiles on that line will also be altered. The goal, of course, is to alter the entire arena to your terrain type.
So far it’s quite simple, but I’ll need to add a few things to make it practical and fun. First of all, the more tiles you have on your side, the more powerful you are – you move faster, you can use more special abilities. This makes sure the game won’t go on forever – once one character gets an advantage, they’ll be able to extend it more and more unless the opponent does something unexpected. I haven’t implemented special abilities yet, but I have a few planned. Not sure yet if different characters will have different abilities, I probably won’t have time for that.
Of course, the above description is for the multiplayer mode, which is where the basic idea comes from. However, being just one person it will be very hard for me to properly balance a game for multiplayer (and I won’t have time to make a proper AI). Therefore, I’m hoping to be able to produce a single player mode that works a little differently, where instead of one equally-powerful enemy, you have waves of simple monsters that alter the terrain against you, and you need to eliminate them before losing all your terrain.
That’s the basic idea. I have very little time left, so let’s hope something good comes out of it!
 Which actually makes it much newer than the previous project, which I actually tried to develop back in high school (that’s over 10 years ago). I had a basic engine working, but absolutely no graphics – the UI was textual menus, and the combat screen was made of ASCII visuals. I’m not even sure if it was written in C or Basic.