Game Setting and Genre
There are several steps necessary to develop the game project. The first requirement is that the game’s genre and setting are selected. There are dozens of possible settings and another dozen genres that can define the initial concept for the game. The most popular game settings are Fantasy, Historical, Modern, Science-Fiction, and Super-Hero. These settings are so diverse that they encompass the majority of games on the market today. It is important to know something about each game setting in order to select the correct one for the project. The following is a brief description of what might be encountered within the game settings.
- Fantasy is a world that can be pretty much any environment in which magic is present. By this the timeline could be anything from tribal through futuristic but the requirement of magic or mystical arts must be an underlying theme throughout the whole game. Commonly there are Wizards, Priests, Fighters, Rogues, Bards or other similarly related character classes.
- Historical settings like fantasy can be any timeframe earlier then modern society. This means any game setting prior to World War I. The world is not allowed to have magic or other fantastic technology. This means that if the world is set in the age of exploration there are no wizards or ray guns mixed into the environment.
- Modern setting is from circa World War I through either an apocalyptic event or the discovery of space travel. The majority of games set within this setting are either development style or military games.
- Science-Fiction setting is a wide range of game environments. The typical setting includes space flight and futuristic weapons like ray guns. There is typically no magic within the world. However there can be exceptions but these is the normal environment.
- Super-Hero is the most recent setting developed. The setting is typically within the modern world where the characters are beyond human skills and abilities. The setting follows the same rules as others but the concept of being the hero in modern life is the focus.
After the setting is chosen then the genre is selected. This is important because it is how the player will experience the game. There are a dozen different genres that can be used for the game but like the setting it is important to understand the concepts behind each before deciding.
- Action games require quick reflexes to ensure that the game keeps moving forward.
- Adventure games do not require quick reflexes the game is based on how the game is played not how fast it is played.
- First Person Shooter [FPS] games can range from medieval weapons to futuristic weapons. The concept is that the player is inside the body of the avatar and playing the whole game from their perspective.
- MMORPG is a fairly new concept. This style of RPG allows many players to experience the game at the same time. The story drives the game through both single and multiplayer environments.
- Puzzle games do not require a story only require a challenge to be overcome. The challenge can be anything with or without a timer but have varied levels of difficulty allowing more experienced players to reach more challenging levels over time.
- Real Life games are also referred to as life simulation games. These games allow the player to be another persona within an environment that they could realistically interact with in their normal life.
- Roll Playing Games [RPG] is a story driven game. The genre can overlap with any other genre but the central focus is the story and sub stories which wrap the player in a state of emersion. In this state the player becomes well involved with the characters and the story.
- Simulation is a broad category as it can range from building a city to piloting some vehicle. Simulation could also be a real life game. However, the idea behind a simulation is that they allow the player to experience something they normally would never be able to do such as fly a helicopter or a space fighter.
Since every game is unique it is more than just the setting and the genre that make the game. However, most players tend to stick to specific combinations such as Fantasy RPG or Flight Simulation. These two categories act as the foundation for the whole development process. There are more steps that need to be covered but this will allow the developer to start thinking about the underling ideas for the project.