Co-op and Procedural Generation

While I wait for work to arrive at my doorstep regarding Ascension, I’ve started (literally, just now) cooking up a concept for a procedurally generated (either fully or partially) co-op game. What I have in mind of a game that shares the “each character has a role” mentality that games like Monaco: What’s Yours is Mine have. In these types of games, the level cannot be completed (or if it can, not easily) without the aid of every person involved. Monaco is a heist game, and I have no intention of stepping on its feet (indeed, I’m not sure if I’ll work on this game at all). What I need to first work out, in this case, is what kind of experience should this game provide?

Here are some options:

-Dungeon Crawler (A tad overdone, but loved for good reason. Great use of procedural generation and lots of room for roles)

-Stealth (Stepping on Monaco’s feet again, but still an option and a damn good one at that)

-Construction (Perhaps requiring all parties involved to put together a building/settlement?)

-Completing a certain task (Things like fishing, harvesting etcetera. Not exactly what I’m going for)

-Combat (Something along the lines of DotA or LoL, requiring players to work together to defeat a force, whether through defence or offence)

-Barricade (Building off the previous concept, a game where you and your team must work together to stave off an attacking force)

-Exploration (Purely exploration, no true goal. Requiring partners to access different areas of the map)

That’s all I can think of for the time being, but feel free to suggest a good idea if you come up with one.

Now, to answer some questions that I predict you’ll be thinking:

Q: Why does this have to be procedurally generated?

A: It doesn’t, but I find that procedurally generated games provide longer replayability, and in a co-op party game replayability is vital to its success.

Q: What perspective would the game be in?

A: Top down or side view, most likely. I suppose isometric would also work, but it’s kind of an awkward perspective and very limiting in this genre.

Q: Would the game have a clear, concise ending?

A: Depends on the type of game, to be honest. Some games, like Minecraft, need no ending. Others, like Monaco, present you with a goal at the very beginning that you know you want to achieve.

Q: What do you mean, partially procedurally generated?

A: For example: Minecraft is 100% procedurally generated. A game where I develop a set of 5 maps and choose randomly from those 5, and then populate that map with items (also at random) would be partially procedural.

Let me know if you have any questions or ideas! I’m not promising any game will be made, but it’s something that I think would be very enjoyable if done properly.


2 thoughts on “Co-op and Procedural Generation

    • Trying to get back into my own head here, I think this was the basis for what eventually became the idea. At this point I was obsessed with just stealing what made Monaco great and making my own version of it though 🙂

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