|knockoff (KO) was the first decent game I ever wrote. It was originally started for a uni assig, but seemed to take on a life of its own. Basically this was all I worked on for a whole semester, for which my uni marks suffered but it got me a job in the end so it all worked out well. There is a long description of KO below, and my original idea but the short version is: 3D action game where you control a character on some floating platforms and the aim is to push all the other players off. There are weapons and powerups but the only thing that matters is staying on the platforms.
Note: Because I used knockoff for a university assignment, we had to let our lecturer know of our plans if we weren't going to do the default assignment. This little intro was taken from an email I sent to my lecturer as a proposal for my assignment. I wrote it before I started working on the assignment, which means what I end up with might not match. However so far I've stayed very true to this original proposal even though the assignment was handed in around September 2003 (for which it recieved 100%).
So the games works as follows: Think of a flat mountaintop, cliffs all around. The cliffs fall to infinity, so if you fall off the top you die. Now imagine a few players on this platform, and in true deathmatch style they are all trying to kill each other. The interesting thing about this game is that there is no damage or life as such - the only way to die is to fall off the edge. If the surface is all iced over (or you use hovercraft or come up with another way to have very little friction) then the players must bash each other around till only one guy is left on the top. That is the basic premise. This is meant to be a no brainer game that you can play with some mates for like 30 mins, laugh your ass off and then put away. Its going to be quick, fun and action pack with little skill required.
The next thing is I want to do cell shading. This game would work really well with cell shading because of its cartoon feel. With no damage, and the point being to bash each other off the edge of the cliff you get a whole 'road runner cartoon' thing happening, which would be greatly enhanced by the cell shading. The cell shading would be my main goal, and this game would work really well as a project to show it off (where as something like a C&C style game would not). I didn't designed the game around the idea that cell shading makes things look like cartoons, but it just so happens that it would work very nicely, so hopefully my game will play like a cartoon.
This whole cartoon theme leads very nicely to the next feature - weapons. But again there is no damage, so getting hit with a rocket will push you back but won't hurt you in the slightest (now we see it all coming together - the whole cartoon, cell shading thing ... it all fits, its like I designed it that way :D hehehe). If you wanted to take the cartoon thing further then instead of shotting rockets you could say shoot anvils or carrots or any other whacky idea you come up with.
The reason I like this game idea so much is that there is an almost limitless amount of improvements you can make. Everything from having weird and wonderful terrain (say the mountain top is not flat, but peaky like a real mountain, then you have to stop sliding off as well as try to push the other guy off), to having goals to aim for (you might need to collect as many crystals as possible that appear at random while not dieing ... or there could be a special area of that map where if you stay inside it you get bonus points so everyone is pushing to get into this one little area). Every few hours I come up with something else I can put in! I'm sure you've come up with your own whacky mod while reading this - as have everyone I've mentioned this too. If I was to make a racing game, or a strategy game it would be sooo much more limited in the things I could do with it once version 1 was completed.