A. Story, Concepts, and Ideas
1. Background story
a. Dr. Proton is back! Duke defeated this criminal mastermind in the original Duke Nukem, but didn't kill him. For the past year Proton has been working on a epic plan of world domination. He's watched Duke grow into a superstar hero and protector of Earth, and that's driven him even more insane with the desire to make Earth a one-government planet: his!
b. Proton has taken over the famed Area 51 in Nevada. He's tapped into the alien technology hidden there to contact several alien races, who have amassed there waiting for their plan to launch.
c. Proton has also taken the military people of Area 51 and bio-mechanically altered them, making them superhuman. (Humans are bio-mechanically enhanced to make them stronger and in some cases give them built-in weapons.)
d. Duke, along with the rest of the world, learns of this hedious plan when Proton makes his first move--the taking over of nearby Las Vegas. Proton's plan is to lure Duke to LV where he'll be quickly dispatched by Proton's Biobots and alien allies. Then, Proton will have little resistance in systematically overtaking the rest of Earth.
2. Dr. Proton
a. Dr. Proton got his name by being a world famous scientist working on the cutting-edge nuclear physics. His co-workers often called him Dr. Proton.
b. An nuclear fusion experiment exploded, blowing off the right side of his brain--the good side! Only evil remained. He replaced the missing side of his brain with a computer of his own design.
c. After battling Duke the first time, he bio-mechnically re-engineered his body in order to better match-up with Duke in the future. Proton is now a foot taller than Duke, and very muscular with a hulking body.
3 The Aliens
a. Proton has summoned in a consortium of aliens who are tired of having their asses kicked by Duke. They've arrived on a huge mothership orbiting Earth
a. Opening of game: Every TV station is overridden with a signal by Dr. Proton, with him explaining that he's taken over Area 51 and Las Vegas and has alien allies orbiting Earth. Duke, with a girl at each side, is watching this on TV while relaxing at his apartment. As a display of power the alien mothership orbiting Earth blows up the moon! Proton requests the immediate, unconditional surrender of Duke. Duke rises up, saying, "Looks like my vacation is over." As Duke walks off the screen we see there was a third girl, kneeling in a position suggesting she was giving Duke a BJ.
b. Closing game cut-scene: Duke's in Vegas and looks up to see the mothership explode, cause a huge but distant explosion in the night sky. Duke, while watching, says, "Dumb-ass friggin' aliens, you don't gamble with Duke." A girl runs up to Duke and says, "Oh Duke, you saved us!" Duke, still starring at the remnants of the blast, says back to her, "I guess it's time for a little R&R, and you'll do just fine..."
B. a Level Ideas
1. Total levels: 22 max -- possibly 18 game levels, 2 secret levels, 2 multiplayer-only levels. The goal is to make fewer, but more quality packed levels.
2. Duke, while going through the cloning machine, finds himself back in Hollywood Holocaust! After completing this level he awakes and is back in the real game.
1. Total weapons: 9, leaving one for user expansion and expansion packs.
2. General: We want a few of Duke's favorite weapons, plus all-new weapons. Weapons to bring back are the shotgun, chaingun, RPG and kick. This leaves room for five new weapons. Plus, he might have one or two inventory weapons. For example, I think the HoloDuke should double as a weapon, being able to explode at the press of a button!
3. The weapons need to have animations as good as those in Turok for the PC, which are just as good as those on the N64. The weapons also need to bob and move as well as those in Quake 2.
4. There's only one weapon firing button. If Duke is holding two weapons, such as two RPGs, then pressing the fire button fires both weapons. If Duke has a non-firing weapon, such as the Proximity Detonator or the Floor Mine, then pressing the action key uses this weapon/device. Note: If Duke is holding something in his left hand, like a Proximity Detonator, and he's standing next to a switch or door, then pressing the action key (spacebar) activates the switch/dor rather than placing the Detonator.
5. Original weapons that are returning:
a. Mighty Kick -- Don't waste a number key on this weapon. It automatically comes up if no other weapon is available. It can also be selected by pressing the K key. Also, Duke will *always* do a quick kick when he's close to an ememy and the kick will finish that enemy off.
b. Riot Gun (shotgun) -- Must go through a pump-action sequence after each shot is fire. (Two-handed weapon.)
c. Chain Gun
d. RPG (rocket propelled grenage) -- Needs a Nuke power-up option, similar to the one in Shadow Warrior. Also a grenade launcher mode. (One-handed weapon.)
6. New Weapon Ideas:
a. o Bowling Ball Bomb! -- This will be just as innovative as the Laser Trip Mine and the Pipe Bomb. It's a round bomb that Duke rolls like a bowling ball at enemies. It explodes when it hits a foe, a wall or falls a certain hieght off a ledge. It also explodes if it's within a proximity of a foe. Duke will be able to rool it down ramps, stairs, off not-so-high ledges, etc. When it explodes and takes out a foe Duke can have plenty of witty things to say, like "Strike!" (One-handed weapon, but can only use one at a time.)
b. Sonic Shockwave weapon -- Hits enemy, delivering damage, and also pushes them backward violently (sometimes they fall down and need to get back up). If they hit a wall when knocked backward they take even more damage (if an enemy dies via hitting the wall, they totally gib as if splatted! Like the bad guys in the first Power Rangers movie, that turned to goo-gibs). This weapon is doubly effective in water, delivering twice the damage. (One-handed weapon.)
c. Rail Gun -- This weapon has a scope and can be used to snipe. The projectile travels through enemies, delivering damage, until it hits a wall. In fact, if the wall is thin enough, it can go through the wall!!! Going through a wall gives this weapon a totally cool appeal and originality. Also, when it goes through a wall its ability to damage an actor drops by 50%, though it still go through all actors in its path. It can only go through one wall at most. (One-handed weapon.) (Note: Since this weapon is starting to appear in many other games, such as Quake 2 and Shadow Warrior, we might neet to have something else instead.)
d. Protonic Blazer -- This weapon fries actors like a flame thrower (but doesn't catch them on fire, which is an effect too hard to pull off well). If this weapon kills you the actor becomes a scortched statue similar to the effect in Turok. This statue is highly unstable and will explode after a while. Shooting it with any other weapon (not the Protonic Blaster, though) will make it explode, possibly hurting nearby actors. (Duke gets this weapon from fallen Military Cammanders.) (Two-handed weapon.)
e. a Floor proximity mines -- These mines explode in a special way: They shoot a canister into the air about head high, which explodes sending hit scan shards in 20 random directions. First, if you're near the explosion you'll take damage, plus each shard that hits you gives damage. The shards can travel a long way and hit other enemies and even you, even though you're 100 feet or more away! If you duck the shards will miss you. (Left-handed weapon.)
f. Anti-matter blaster -- This is a weapon of such power that it obliterates everything and does so immediately. Duke only gets this gun once, by collecting all six pieces that are very well hidden through the first 75% of the levels. After that, Duke can use it while the limited ammo lasts (i.e. 10 shots). This weapon is like the Big Gun in the arcade game, Heavy Barrel. However, it's limitation is that it won't work well against the final boss, which I assume will be Proton, because he will have a special defense. In fact, if you try to use it on him he laughs and taunts you! Players will love the absolutely destruction and death this weapons deals out. It'll be like a legal god mode weapon while it lasts. This weapon is treated as an inventory item until all peices are collected, then it becomes a number key. (Two-handed weapon.)
g. Left-handed only: Breaking a bottle and using it as a knife-like weapon.
D. Inventory Ideas
1. Steroids -- Allows Duke to jump higher, run faster, kick harder, take hits with a little less damage (half as effective as the weakest armor), stay under water longer holding breadth, and maybe a few more things.
2. HoloDuke -- The HoloDuke should double as a weapon, being able to both shoot (only holographic missiles) and explode (for real)! Lasts 50 seconds. Pressing the HoloDuke inventory item a second time causes the HoloDuke to explode!
3. Reusable Health Pack -- Starts with 100 health, and the player selects it to increase their own health up to 100 points.
a. Using your medkit, Duke can heal certain nearly dead human-based foes (if they're in the begging mode) and they become you ally. (If Duke heals a begging alien, they still attack Duke no matter what.)
4. Breather -- Works both underwater and for going through deadly gas.
5. Motion Sensor -- A device that shows colored dots (depending on below, even or above you), and doesn't show players who are motionless. (Left-handed item only.)
6. Proximity Detonator — (Not sure if this is a weapon or an inventory item.) This detonator can be placed on any object, and explodes if an actor gets within its range. The effect of the detonator's explosion--by itself--is minimal, perhaps causing a maximum of 5% damage at close range to an actor. The purpose of the detonator is to turn other items into mines and traps. For example, if the detonator is attached to a barrel of gasoline, or an immoveable bomb, it becomes a deathtrap to any actor getting near to it. A detonator can also be attached to certain ammo boxes turning them into traps (like a box of RPGs). Detonators can be used to alert the player where other players are. For example, in Dukematch, a detonator might be placed in a doorway around the corner so that someone going through the doorway will alert the player around the corner. (Left-handed item only.)
7. Heat sensor goggles -- Allow you to see in dark and even through a thin wall. A great combo with the Rail Gun, which can shoot thru thin walls.
8. Anti-matter blaster -- This is a six-part inventory item until Duke gets all six pieces, then it becomes a weapon key (#9).
E. Game Items that Help Duke
1. o Health
a. Small Health Pack
b. Large health Pack
c. Nuclear Power-up
2. Steroids -- Allows Duke to run faster, recieve 30% less damage per hit, kick does three times the damage, and do double jump.
a. If an actor runs over an ammo they can use, they pick it up! They do not, however, seek out ammo—they only get it if it's run over by them and it matches a weapon they have.
b. Actors talk to each other and give each other commands, like "you take him from behind."
c. Walk into room that's a trap — an enemy pulls a level that closes all room exits and opens up a room with a bunch of bad guys who rush in at you.
d. Two actors jump into jeep, one drives one shoots mounted machine gun.
e. Some actors have two weapons, a big weapon which has limited ammo, and a smaller weapon with ammo limit.
f. If foe is ready to die he might try to help out a nearby bad guy. He does this by throwing ammo in the direction of a similar foe, who picks it up.
g. Some bad guys near death might explode themselves Preditor-style.
h. Have bums, hookers, grungy bystanders that you don't want to shoot because they may have someway to help you, such as a ammo, health, or an inventory item that they found and will give to you. Does Duke try to save these guys? I say no--they just stay where they are. What prevents Duke from killing them off? Nothing, but if Duke kills a harmless bystander too many times then word on the street is that Duke is dangerous and not to help him anymore by giving him some ammo, health, etc. They will then say something like, "You're on your own Duke."
i. Monsters regenerate health 1 point every 3 seconds.
2. Proton's Military Henchmen -- These are the Area 51 military people who have been bio-mechanically altered. They charge very quickly at times. These are the general guys who will man jeeps, throw switches, etc. Start with shotgun with limited rounds, then switches to pistol. A unique ability for this foe is that he can steal your weapon and use it (can't steal all weapons, only a subset which we'll define later--for example, can't still the Anti-matter Blaster). You get the stolen weapon back--he drops it—when you kill him, so it's typically a temporary loss. These guys can have dogs on leashes. Maybe these should be females? (We need a good female enemy in the game.)
3. Proton's Military Cammanders -- Much bigger and tougher, with three weapons. The initial weapon is a Protonic Blazer, with 10 charges, then the second weapon is an RPG with 10 rounds. Once these are spent he switches to the shotgun with unlimited ammo. It would be supper cool if we could see them switch weapons, and show them with their different weapons. If you kill this guy while he's using the Protonic Blazer you get the weapon itself with the unused ammo! Same goes for the RPG.
4. Proton's Mutant Experiement — This guy can morph between three states to better pursue Duke. On land he's a badly deformed hulking human form. He can also dive into water and change into a mutant-looking sharkman. He doesn't have a weapon, but relies on his ability to absorb damage easily, and his speed to attack you On land he can jump extremely high, as much as four stories high! He can also cling to ceilings with his hands and pursue you that way, dropping down on you from above. It would be great if for each instance of this character we could throw some random goop/blood/discolorization onto his skin to make them all look a little unique, or have four skins that have ripped flesh/blood/etc. in different places.
5. Pig Cop (alien) -- This is the only alien being revived from Duke 3D. This time he's dressed in a military uniform. Still equipped with a shotgun.
6. Chameleon (alien) -- This alien is placed around levels and takes on the skin of the wall. When initially encounted, this alien stays still until shot or within a close distance to Duke. This alien has dark eyes, but the rest of its body is the wall texture.
7. An alien with two elbows and/or two knees...
8. An alien that stacks up two high, with the legs of the top one becoming arms using a weapon.
9. A Horta-type creature (from Star Trek's "Devil in the Dark" episode). This is an alien that is a big blob without eyes, about three feet high (allowing it to easily hide behind things). It can go in any direction without turning, but it does turn occassionally to make it look like it's looking around. Very tough to kill. Moves very fast. Attacks by bumping into you. Can only stay in a flat area—will not go up slopes or stairs. Makes a scary hissing noise. The animation on this creature is such that it is constantly undulating and bulging in places.
10. A creature that sticks to a floor, ceiling or wall with a huge tentacle that reaches out toward the player. The creature never moves from its position, and is therefore like an environment hazard. For example, several can be put on the ceiling of a room to create a very creepy atmosphere. A big hit from a tentacle can knock the playing flying in that direction, even dropping the weapon!
1. General: Multi-stage bosses that are not killed via the all to common circle-strafe technique. Multi-stage means that they change at points during the attack, similar to how Hitler changed from the robot to the human-form at the end of Wolfenstein 3D.
2. Boss idea -- An invincible boss! You cannot kill it due to its shield or some other reason. To kill it you must trick it to falling into a huge pit (possibly by jumping across it and the boss tries but can't make it, or by knocking back into the pit a la Terminator 2).
3. Boss idea — Duke musst get swallowed by another invincible boss, drop a mine, think get out through the ass before it explodes!
4. The Final boss should be a massive clone of Duke. A few levels earlier Duke goes through a cloning machine and Dr. Proton says he finally has the ultimate match for Duke! This cloned Duke is twice the size and off-color. Duke will kill this Duke somehow, then kills Proton, only to find it was a clone of Proton, too, while the real Proton escapes into space. End of game.
H. AI Considerations
1. In making actor AI, we should dissect what it is about players in a multiplayer game that makes them appear to be intelligent. The following issues make human players appear intelligent:
2. Humans react different to opponents depending on the opponents weapon. This can be replicated by a number of actors.
3. Humans use a wide range of available weapons, and make intelligent choices on which weapon to use in different circumstances. For actors, some should be able to use two, three, maybe up to four or five weapons. I do not think that it's prudent to have these actors seek out or use weapons that are available for the player to pick up. Instead, I think these actors should already have these weapons on them.
4. Humans use all of the power-ups available, which obviously shows them making intelligent decisions. This might be tough for actors to do, too, since I think power-ups, like ammo and weapons, should be reserved for the player's use and the mappers shouldn't need to be concerned if a strategically placed power-up will be used by an actor before the player gets to it. However, some actors should use certain power-ups as if they already have them in their inventory, such as maybe an invisibility device. Overall, this is a hard ability to get actors to duplicate, so it should be very low on the priority list.
5. Humans use all of the interactive parts of the level, such as doors, switches, computer screens, elevators, vehicles, etc. Some actors should also use these things.
6. Humans can fire while moving forward, backward and strafing. Actors should do the same them unless they have attacks that don't make sense for this.
7. Humans will run away and dodge when necessary, rather than always pursuing the target without personal concern for damage. Many actors should do the same.
8. Humans will seek advantage points in a level to snipe from, or to have a better position on opponents. We can flag certain level locations as "vantage points" so that certain actors (with long range attacks) can go to these points easily if they choose.
9. Humans know a levels full layout and make movement and pursuit decisions based on this knowledge (whereas in all previous 3D shooters the actors do not know a level's layout at all, and simply follow the player via a line-of-sight algorithm. Actors can be given a better understanding of a level's layout by mappers placing a "player pursuit array" (PPA) at junctions in the map in which the actor might not know which way is best to go because the player has already left its line-of-sight. For example, an actor spots and player and the player bolts away around a corner and into a room that has two other exits and a ladder going up. The mapper can place a PPA at this junction that gives each direction a percentage value (they all add up to 100%), and based on those values the actor picks a direction of pursuit rather than just giving up the chase.
10. Humans do unpredictable things while playing. Actors can be programmed to do unexpected things, too, such as randomly going into a plan (see above) that is a series of moves, such as running out of the room, waiting 5 seconds, then running back into the room guns blazing.
a. Variance among actors of the same type: Whenever a level is loaded (whether from first entering it or from loading a saved game), the actors should be reprogrammed with some random variances that are legal (within the allowed range) for their actor type. For example, all of the Actor X's on a level will not run at the same speed, instead they'll be programmed with random speed values within a preset range for this actor type. Shooting accuracy, aggressiveness, and other factors should be similarly varied. The goal is to de-clone actors and make each one unique to a small extent.
11. Squads Two or more actors can act as a squad; in which some more forward while others lay cover fire. There needs to be a way to define certain actors as being part of a squad, in which case they try to stay close to each other and attack as a group.
I. Multi-player Ideas
1. Make a Bombshell skin as an alternative for players to choose in Dukematch. Bombshell should appear somewhere in the game, too.
2. Can play as certain enemies, such as Dr. Proton. This would be too cool to play as Proton—Duke's lifelong nemesis!
J. Duke General Ideas
1. When Duke is idle for a while, he starts looking around on his own, saying stuff like "What's taking so damn long!" (His head actually looks around on it's own, looking left and right with some slight up and down movement for realism.)
2. On one level there's a drunk who if you interact with him will tell you to go away. Most players will just shoot him. However, if you kill all enemies on a level then go back to him, he'll not be scared anymore and give you something, maybe one of the pieces to the Anti-Matter Blaster.
3. Duke starts on one end of a level and at the other end there are three bad guys standing in front of a scientist, firing squad style. The bad guys kill the scientist after 30 seconds. However, if Duke rushes to that spot he can save the scientist, who gives him a clue. Normally, though, Duke will arrive and just see a room with three bad guys and a dead scientist against the wall, and think the level started that way.
Printed 2:12p 6/22/98