Ideas and Thoughts: BLAM!!!

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12-Dec-97

First I've got to tell you about the name of this.  I had a really big complicated name, but it got to be TOO long and complicated for it's own good, so I just went for simplicity.  What was the old one?  I built it around Gun Smoke and Zapper, and kept adding on.  It was something like Ball Lightning Bug Zapper Gun Smoke Screen Saver.

Now, as you may have gathered, my topic today is light guns, zappers, whatever you call 'em.  Now, whenever you read about one of this type of game, what is the one thing that you ALWAYS seem to hear?  Not enough replay, right?  Right.  Things needn't be this way...

What if a gun-mode was incorporated into many other games?  That's the key sentence for the whole page, folks.

Imagine, if you will, a light-gun mode on Goldeneye.  The computer would move around for you, and you would take out the enemies as they came up.  Of course, what about replay, you ask?  Well, it wouldn't go through the same way each time, and could react on it's own against enemy forces, etc.  Of course, having a mode like this on a game like Goldeneye could be dangerous.  What do I mean?  Well, if it's controlled for you, you could just pay attention there and learn exactly how to beat it in the normal control mode.  Tsk, tsk.  So I guess it'd sorta be like the codes: you can only use them on stages you've beat.  Still, for a game like Goldeneye, enemies might need rearranging.  I mean, if the computer moved itself into a position where you're surrounded, you're out of luck.  If it could make it so they're most likely to appear right in front of you, you'd stand a chance.

Of course, first-person shooters aren't the only games that could have a good mode like this.  Think of StarFox 64.  Or the asteroids stage in Shadows of the Empire.  Of course, almost any game could have a zapper mode put in it, though it wouldn't be as natural in some.  I mean, you could have one on a game like Super Mario 64... just shoot the goombas!

Of course, having the computer move you around wouldn't be the only way... you could have a friend move around for you, or vice-versa.  Great for teamwork!

There is one thing gun games have I've neglected a bit: the innocent bystanders.  You can't really fit these into any old game at any point.  Of course, StarFox 64 has Katina where you don't want to shoot down the good guys (or your people on any stage for that matter), though you're not penalized for it.  And on Goldeneye there're a places where you have to keep scientist/civilian casualties low, or risk failure.  Again, if they think it's a big enough deal, there could be changes made to the games in this mode... that'd be great, playing Goldeneye, with a bunch of civilians running through military bases and stuff.  :)

A gun mode probably wouldn't make or break a game, but it's one of those many things that will add up to make a game better than a similar one without them...

Joshua Slone enjoys long walks down the information superhighway.