Core Dump - Work In Progress
October 30, 1997 : Plot Lines
Too many files?
I've been hearing about a strange error lately, so I decided to post a question on the MSX newsgroup. I haven't had an answer so far, but that's not really surprising, considering that I posted it 10 minutes ago...
What happened? Well, putting 56 files (called "blade.00" "blade.01" etc.) resulted into "too many files"! That's preposterous, I should think, because the root directory can contain 112 files. My reference books state no exceptions to this rule, and I cannot think of any technical reason why it shouldn't be possible. Weird. I hope somebody can help me out on that one.
By now, the plot as it will appear in Core Dump is getting a bit big. But the fun part is that it will be variable. I will make "Chapters", like in Akin, but this time the player decides how the chapters are actually filled in. You could complete the game in, say, 10 chapters, but it could also take you 20. The game will allow for many possibilities.
This is implemented using Plot Lines. There are about eight plot lines, and progression is more or less lineair if only one plot is considered. But the player's actions decide which plots are advanced, and this might influence the way other plots lines are developed. This will greatly enhance the "replay-value" of the game. Also, it will be a challange to find the longest route to the end, as well as the shortest. Indeed, you might complete the game without having seen certain sections. I think that the resulting enddemo should show pictures of all areas, so that when you complete it, you go "hey! but I haven seen THAT area!" and this would encourage you to play the game again. Multiple secrets ensure that too.
This is also a technique used in the promo, where there are basically
two plot lines: one that sees Gen getting the Core Detector, the Light
Sabre, and then the Plastic Explosives. The other plot revolves around
the discussion between Gen/Cooper and Tom Yimao, and the Belmonts. (A
single character can participate in several plot lines.)
Soon I'll be talking about how the scrolling routine works, so keep watching this space, budding programmers!