This design was made for a Game Design Challenge, where the main character must have some kind of limitation about how he moves. Here’s the link for the original.
What I’m planning is a side-scroller game, telling the story of a Knight cursed by the evil Sorcerer. The name of it is The Cursed Knight.
His curse? He can’t walk towards his goal, and if he look at his own past, he put a wall between he and the goal.
How it translate in gameplay? The game, a side-scroller that also utilizes elements of puzzles, limits the player in two distinct ways: He can’t go to the right side of the game; If he try to move, he stop. The player also can’t change directions: If the was looking right, and looks left, he create a wall in the square in front of him. If he was looking left, and turns right, he also create a wall in the square in front of him. If the space already is blocked, the wall appears under the player, and he is thrown up.
To be able to face these limitations, the Knight can face himself. To the player, it means a black screen. That’s the only way the Knight can move towards his goal, always in the right side. Going blind, he can “short jump” and “long jump”. The short jump is a small jump, that will not throw the Knight great distances, just enough to jump a small obstacle. And the long jump will throw the Knight far away, enough to cross some holes . In the beginning, it’s easy: Just go, if there is no enemies and no holes, he can just go. But if there is enemies, he may be in danger of being hit, and one hit is enough to die.
Below, there is an example of a stage in the beginning of the game, after the player understand the basic concepts:
This first scene would be the way the player start this stage. He is looking right, and he must go to the next area. But he can’t just go blind, because there is a hole, that’s barely the size he can jump. So, he’ll not risk it.
He faces left, and creates a wall. He can keep moving, maybe try to create a ramp. But if he tried it, he could fail, and he don’t want to lose time. He decides to go blind.
The reason why this is a stage after the tutorials is simple: The player must be able to do two actions blind. The first one is a short jump, and the second a long jump. If the player, by any reason, decide to see the stage, he will fail. In the first part of this sequence, if he fail to time it, he will fall between the two walls, and will not be able to go back again. In the second part, if he fail to count his time, he may fall through the hole. As soon as he is safe, in the second part of the stage, he can go blind without any problems, and still be safe.