Refuge in the Skies

After the success of the first nuclear weapons in the late 40s certain parties began extensive work in researching nuclear weapons technology. While trying to develop a fission bomb they accidentally discovered the secret to cold fusion, igniting all the ‘dormant’ nuclear material in the area. This caused such a catastrophic explosion that it flattened half a continent, taking the secret of cold fusion with it.

To make things worse, the explosion triggered a series of devastating earthquakes that opened up vast submarine oil deposits, dumping tonnes of oil into the ocean. In addition to this, vast amounts of radioactive debris from the initial explosion filled the sky. Pockets of helium escape from the ground and form bubbles in the thick oil. People hurriedly fled to the skies to escape the ensuing destruction.

Years later, large blimps fill the sky, adorned with multiple balloons hoist lightweight structures fit for living in and working at. Aerial service stations insure that no aircraft falls into disrepair. Greenhouses filled with flora ensure that children grow up without the dangers of oxygen deprivation from the thin air at high altitudes.

You are, like approximately half the population of earth, a pilot. Your mission is to collect oil for refining into fuel, helium for filling blimps, scrap metal for making planes and, if you are very lucky, seeds for growing plants.It is also your duty to protect your colony from the threat of rouge planes and the air force of rival colonies.

Planes cannot simply fly down to collect materials from earth’s surface. Because of the fumes from the oil, planes have a danger of causing an explosion if their engines are heated up and moving. Planes need to cold start at a dock high in the sky and simply glide down to earth with the engine off. Then they need to glide back up as high as possible before even using the engine.

As you progress through the game you can upgrade your fuel tank, cargo hold, resource collector scoop, engine and purchase a better model plane.

Specifiable end

This is less of a full game idea and more of game mechanic idea. In multiplayer mode for any game, there is usually a definite objective such as getting to somewhere faster than everyone else, collecting the most of something or doing a specific task the most times out of all the players. For the latter two it will usually be coupled with a time limit to ensure that rounds are not too long or too short if the players are inexperienced or expert respectively.

This time limit, while sometimes customisable before the round begins, is a constant, allowing know when the round will end. If the players could end the game at whatever time they wanted (with a majority voting system) it could add a whole new dynamic to the gameplay. But rather than the game ending as soon as the majority indicates that they want to end, the game plays on for a certain amount of time afterwards. For instance, if the goal of the game was to collect coins spread out around the map, people could pretend to be bad at collecting coins, offer to end the game then quickly collect a lot before the time runs out, while the opposition is relaxing thinking they have it in the bag. This would almost allow for poker-like tactics of bluffing and double bluffing. This would be coupled with the score being hidden during the final minutes of the game, so as to not alert the opposing side to what you are doing.

Puzzle Platformer

This next idea is a puzzle platformer. Or to be more precise, it’s a puzzle crossed with a platformer. A lot of puzzle games revolve around making combinations of coloured blocks or shapes and destroying them.

So imagine if certain blocks had elements from a platformer game, such as keys, doors and levers inside of them. So instead of trying to destroy coloured blocks to get points, you would be destroying blocks so that you could get a key or a door to fall down so you could complete the level.

It could even get more complex so that you have to create an entire section of the level on your own. Some pieces would have to be locked down so they cannot be move/destroyed so that you couldn’t inadvertently make the level impossible (for instance the piece with your character on, or the end piece)

Note: I posted this idea yesterday but it mysteriously disappeared after I made a small edit to it. I had to rewrite it and re-post it today. Not sure if the culprit was blogger, my browser or me but my guess it was the combination of all three. It was much longer before, but I think this new version is better written, so I suppose it’s a win!

Déjà Vu

Picture this: you're playing a platformer game and you are walking along. You see a red button so you step on it, thinking that it will aid you in completing the level somehow. Suddenly a spike falls down from the sky. You 'die' and have to start the level again, but now you know not to step on the red button.

A lot of games require you to restart the level should you die. However the twist in this game is that restarting is part of the game, instead of a punishment for doing badly.

Each level would have a time limit, and if you didn't complete the level in under the time limit, it would restart, the same as if you 'died'. This means that if there was more than one way to complete the level, you may have to find the faster way in order to advance to the next level.

The real trick to this game would come after a few levels with just these mechanics. Probably in level 3 or 4, you would find a level that changes everything. There are two ways to go, one to a key and one to a door (and the end of the level). No matter how fast you run, if you go get the key, you cannot make it to the door in time. But if you do not get they key, you cannot unlock the door. There is a trapdoor that leads from the area the key is in to the area the door is in, but the lever for the trapdoor is down below, near the door.

If you pull the lever, the trap door only stays open for 3 seconds. And there is no way to jump up through the trapdoor. You may notice, though, that the lever is glowing blue.

Before you have a chance to work out what it means, the timer goes up once again and you restart. You walk down to the lever again and notice that it moves itself, right at the same moment you pulled it last time. You wait for the timer to go up, and then you walk back to the lever again, but this time you pull it as soon as you get there. You restart, climb up the ladder and get the key, walk through the trapdoor that seemingly opens itself, and simply walk through the door.

To cut a long story short, if you interact with a glowing blue object, then that interaction stays the next time you do the level.

Open World FPS

If you've ever played a first person shooter you'll know that most of the time they follow a strict plot through strict areas of their world. Each time you play the game it will be exactly the same as the last.

Whereas if you play an RPG, it has what the games industry refers to as an Open World. This means you can choose where you want to go and to a certain extent, what you want to do. This has been done in a 3rd person shooter before (focusing around criminals) so what would make my idea unique is having it based around special forces.

You could choose what suspected enemy bases and safe houses you want to raid and when you want to raid them. But you can't just go raiding wherever because if you raid a incorrect house within earshot of the real base, they will be alerted and will pack up shop ASAP. When you are not on a mission you could be an undercover agent trying to infiltrate the enemies system to find out more information about where they are located. If you're good enough at going undercover you could even become a double agent, tricking the enemy into thinking you are on their team.

As the 'goodies' you could set up your own bases that would from time to time be raided by the enemies. The game would therefore have an element of strategy (where to set up base, when to move etc). As you defeat more enemies, the government could give you more funds to set up bigger bases with more ammo stocked and more soldiers to help you.


Okay, it's only the second idea and I'm already resorting to thinking up platformer games. I'm not really out of ideas, I just think that platformers are such a great game type because most people have played one before, and it's so simple to learn how to play even if they have never played before. Essentially then, platformer games are a blank canvas on which you can put new, unique features and mechanics.

So my idea: A basic puzzle platformer, where you have to collect coins and keys unlock doors etcetera. But the twist is that wherever you walk you leave a faint ghost-like trail behind you. The trail does nothing except look cool - until you die. When you die you have restart the level, but the trail turns solid. Every time you die the last trail you created disappears, in order to prevent the level becoming a tangled mess. There could be a 'self-destruct' button so that you can arbitrarily decide when to create the solid trail, and completely restart the level if you need to (by self-destructing at the very beginning there would be no solid trail next time, because you hadn't moved to create a ghost trail yet)

So, this trail system is great an all, but how exactly does it make the game more fun, difficult or interesting?

Well think about this situation: there is a bottomless pit of brimstone and hellfire and you just can't quite jump all the way across. By jumping in once, your trail creates a bridge that goes half way across the pit. You are then able to walk on this bridge and jump off it to the other side of the bridge.

My friend No-Eyed Pete does a better job of explaining below:

Another challenge could involve a platform high in the air that you need to get to, but you just can't jump high enough. By jumping up and then self-destructing, you have created a nice step on which you can jump to get the rest of the way up to the platform.


Today's game idea is a Massively Multiplayer Online Collectible Card Game. So basically it's a combination between an online multiplayer game and a collectible card game.

Players collect cards like any other card game, such as trading them with friends, buying them, getting them from cereal boxes etc. But the game is played by logging into a website. You scan in the cards using your webcam, or by writing a code down from the card.

The cards code would be checked on the game's database when entered. If you trade with another player in real life and scan the card into your account, the person you traded with would lose their ownership of that card on the website.

Games could be initiated on the website, and there could be animations of your cards fighting or being used. The game could even be played in real-time rather than turn-based. Cards could be leveled up from fighting a lot, making them more powerful and gain more abilities.

There could be alternate rules for the game that would allow you to play games offline with your friends and therefore gain their cards. Any abilities gained from the online xp system would have to be negated, as there would not be a practical way to verify this. For this reason it would not be a good idea to play with a highly leveled up card offline, as it would be easier for it to be defeated online

Cards could be bought online and printed out if you didn't want to wait for shipping. There could be less powerful free cards that you can download and printout from the website, so you can start playing either offline or online for free.

I have not played collectible card games much at all so I may assess the actual game play another day. But the online version of the game would probably work more like a Real-Time Strategy game (RTS) than a traditional card game.

What do you think of this game idea? Would you play it? Be sure to comment on or rate this idea using the buttons below.