Okay, finally got something I like. When the Minimalist theme was announced my first idea was a minimalist RPG, like a Roguelike. And I’d been thinking about writing a Roguelike for a while…but I don’t think I could write a good Roguelike in two days.
After getting some sleep I thought of a very simple action game – top-down, 2D. You start in the center of a room and must avoid enemies until a weapon spawns, at which point you can pick it up and kill them. Unfortunately this is almost exactly what MrFun is doing…and he’s actually a good way into making his game.
So I came back to thinking about the minimalist RPG idea, and of course of the first games I thought of was the original Legend of Zelda. (Except that some people claim that Zelda isn’t an RPG at all. Why? Because there are no stats to improve. You don’t level up and gain abilities; all your abilities come from things you find in the world. Want more health? Find a heart container. Want do to more damage? Find a better sword, etc. I can see their point, but I don’t think I agree with it.)
And then I remembered a game I played a long time ago called Castle Adventure. It was a very good real-time RPG similar to Zelda, where you picked up items that gave you new abilities and allowed you to explore (and ultimately escape) the castle. Combat was a bit lame, however – it had Roguelike combat, where you just ran into an enemy and whoever was tougher won. I liked that there were a lot of puzzles in the game, though. You used treasures you’d already found to access new areas of the castle and get more treasures.
Both of these games seem to strip the concept of the RPG down to its roots. So I’m going to write a game similar to them, but adding improvements of my own. It’ll have Zelda-style action combat but it’ll also have Castle Adventure-style treasure collecting and puzzle solving.
And it’ll be in text mode