14 September, 2007
I’ve talked enough about business models for now, so let’s do a fun design challenge: games about construction.
Most geeky people remember having construction toys as a kid: Legos, erector sets (heh heh), and so on. More modern games have taken this, with the Pirates of the Spanish main constructible strategy game.
So, the challenge this week is to think of a video game with the theme of construction. This could be a single-player game, or a system in an online game.
My thoughts after the break.
There have been some online games taking advantage of this: there is an online version of the Pirates of the Spanish Main game by Sony. There’s also the Lego MMO from NetDevil being developed. One problem for these games is that there’s no way to get the tactile aspect of construction. I love Legos (particularly the Star Wars sets), ad the fun part is snapping the pieces together to form the final ship and understanding how it’s constructed. Seeing how the bits fit together, and knowing where the secret compartments are is pretty neat. I wonder if the MMO has any chance of capturing that feeling. The Star Wars Lego console games didn’t, but they were still fun; the lego aspect made things like vehicles falling apart more entertaining.
You also get some construction aspects in online games for things like housing. Ultima Online was known for the way you could customize your house, and how you could put together different items to create the appearance of another object: making a piano is probably one of the most well-known examples. But, decorating a house in general was a very constructive thing to do.
What are your thoughts? What kind of games can you do that focus on construction as a major element?