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My crafting concept - is it worth pursuing or no?

Hello there, I’m currently working on a survival game in which you play as a dog. I’ve been trying to find a way to justify a crafting/building mechanic, and I’m not sure if what I’ve come up with is really worth pursuing conceptually or not.

The narrative of my game is based on a true story, so I’ve been trying to keep gameplay within the realm of realism as much as possible, which is why I’m not sure if this concept is worth pursuing or not.

So the mechanic would work like this; you find materials, sticks, leaves, mud etc., and lay them out on the ground, adding them to each other one at a time. Think like how a beaver builds a dam. The player would only be able to build very basic structures, no watch towers or catapults or anything like that, just something to protect them from predators and nature.

The remainder of the gameplay revolves around hunting, thirst, hunger, scrounging for food and water and various other survival techniques.

So what do y’all think, is it too far outside the bounds of reality to work well with what I’m going for? Or is it something I should continue to develop?

Thanks so much for y’alls opinions!

I think it’s a cute idea, however it would need to be a well thought out concept to be enjoyable. Because it’s rather niche and doesn’t (yet) sound like anything that would keep me playing for a long time.

My first thoughts are for example, since you play as a dog, it would have to focus on a interesting environment in which you live in, otherwise it’s just another out-of-the-box survival game - only that you have 4 legs and not two. Also, survival mechanics (hunger, thirst, food, etc.) are so overdone it’s getting tedious. Please don’t do the typical hunger meter that drains lightning fast and forces the player to eat every 10 minutes or he will die. :stuck_out_tongue:

However, playing as a dog (or animal in general) is actually an interesting idea, because you can add unique features like seeing things differently, like focussing on sound or smell for the gameplay, …

There was this one game where you played as a squirrel or cat or some other cute furry creature, and it was very well received. Can’t remember the name though, but a steam tag search for animal should get you there.

Sounds like a good game.
I think it would be cool if it took place in current times and some store owners take pity on the dog and feed it while others shoo it.
Maybe the dog has to run from dog catchers periodically.

My first thought is playing as an animal is very unique and all in all, an experience that I would love to try. Translating an animals natural athleticism into potential game play sounds like it would be fun and different than the norm. You would be fast, you could use there heightened senses for potential game play as well. As far as crafting goes though, I don’t see how that fits into being a dog? What are you trying to achieve with crafting? Also, why does a dog need to craft things? They generally only need food and water to survive. They already have a fur coat to help protect them against the elements. Now it is just a game, and you could include the gameplay mechanic if you were leaning more towards the fantasy side of things. However even if you were, in my opinion that would take away from the experience of being dog.

I’ve been putting a lot of research into this, and the player will be playing as a labradoodle, now labradoodles don’t have undercoats, so they can still suffer negative effects from the elements, specifically the cold. And that’s why I was considering it. But you’re right, if I made a crafting/building/whatever mechanic it would start to lean more towards the fantasy side of things. Which I would probably be fine with if the narrative weren’t based on a true story. So I’ve also been trying to keep gameplay within the bounds of realism. But overall I think I agree when you say it would take away from what it means to survive as a dog. So with all that being said, I think I’ve decided to scratch that concept.

Okay, yea I was just making general assumptions about what your dog may be like. I would love to play your game when it comes out, sounds pretty cool. While animal based games are not the most popular (compared to the market being saturated with shooting games) I think they are a rather untapped niche within the game market, and there are still lots of ideas and potential game play mechanics to explore that people are not used too. I’m in the middle of developing a game where the main character is an animal as well. It certainly gives you a unique perspective on gameplay. I like to think of game design in terms of making something that people can’t be in real life. Something that people want to experience but they can’t.