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More interesting items/ideas for a Bioshock Rapture MMORPG
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Fantasy? - sorry this is REAL Bioshock :
Flower bombs and Lollipop guns used against the Hello-Kitty look-alike meanies and the blue-skinned mole-men. Giant Goldfish are menacing the Magic City once again ?? Lets put on our propeller hats, get our magic tridents and be after them.
Quantum physics is just a buzzword and has little to do with any thing they use to justify in-game . 'Tesla Coil' would have been just as good, except even with all the things Tesla promised Time Travel and Omnescient Cross Dimensionism, Anti-Gravity (sortof) werent quite on his list.
The MMORPG will go in the Opposite direction - more towards reality (might be difficult to do and take more thought (some of the plasmid and tonic stuff was a bit weird), but thats what makes it worthwhile and a bigger achievement to accomplish).
Early Large Desalinization plant in Rapture :
Not just for workers but all that Cement (millions of cubic yards) which uses alot of fresh water in its mix.
Such Desalinization plants used alot of Power, so the Operation at Hephaestus would have to be sufficiently done to accommodate the Cities building phase. The City used many prefabricated concrete parts (easier/cheaper to construct on land/surface and to source the materials) but there was alot more concrete used than for those used at the site (which would have to be mixed locally).
No names floating over Players/NPCs :
Looking at one of the old MMORPG games, I noticed the overhead NPC/Player names standing out (mostly NPCs who greatly outnumbered Players). But then the resolution/detail-quality wasnt very good to be able to recognize between the figures visually too well, and 2D terrain often obscured the figures.
This MMORPG should try to have distinctive enough looking clothing and details (including faces close up) to be able to recognize players/NPCs you've seen before. NPC location and regular habits can also help discern identities.
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More sign that the Plasmid Effects are 'Faked' :
A Splicer is firing at you repeatedly. If you are far away, the projectile (like a Winter Blast iceball takes the flight time to reach you, but the Splicer doesnt fire again until it hits (you or misses). The closer you are, the shorter the cycle is (when they hit) and lots of Damage (pretty fast when they are that close). This implies some limit effect the Splicer/Plasmid is actively managing per shot. The psi-effects for the 'faking' (Ive mentioned elsewhere) have to be continued while the projectile is doing its action, and the Splicer is finally released only when the shot terminates, and then can procede with another shot. It is not 'fire and forget' as a simple self-contained projectile system would be - the firer is still involved (theres no reason they should 'slow down' when wanting to whale on you).
I noticed this where lots of Wintery and normal Houdini Splicers are in Minervas Den (not overly effective to try to blast them at close range in Hard mode with many weapons)...
Some part of the Plasmid's effect is seperate from any active physical mechanism -- in my 'sci-fi' universe the Iceball is actually more a glueball, in order to tangle 'freeze' you and the psi makes you THINK you are frozen solid (stunning/paralyzing you). The 'breaking into bits' effect may be illusional to the firer (you cannot actually project enough supercold whatever - immerse the target fully for sufficient time and draw out a sufficient amount of heat to make them brittle enough to break on being struck - even immersed in liquid nitrogen that trick is done for real with things of large surface-area-to-volume ratios and faily small objects (the item is put into a bath of the supercold freezing liquid).
Incinerate actually DOES fire a ball of fire at you -- a bio-napalm potato cannon armgun, but this might be magnified by stunning you to stay more still to be easier to hit and extra damage imagined, bigger flames obscuring the targets view, etc...
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Supersize That :
I noticed the Typewriter in BAS, how much better the model is than the one you see in BS1/BS2. Looking better is OK but niot required (especially with the larger number of detailed objects in the MMORPG).
More Interactive devices/objects in the MMORPG is one of the big features, and I could see a Typewriter object actually being the front for some in-game interfaces (like filling out the limited paperwork - usually Bounty claims? Letters to the New Rapture Tribune ... ) with a much bigger DETAILED model used, with operation sound effects, etc... LOD (Level Of Detail) can substitute a better detailed model when you deal closely with an object. Others probably would be various tools (workbench acivities and repairs) and control panels, or watching media device like a TV.
So simpler models (BS1/BS2 quality) until you get very close.
DO Splicers still have nice Handwriting? :
Handwritten notes - Another Asset used for Missions and city history, etc... Props for Player Created Missions/Quests (interesting mechanism is allowing 'substitutions' to match the mutatable nature of the Quest Auto-Generation.) There are handwriting 'fonts' that allow script created handwriting.
Combination numbers/clues scrawled on windows and walls in human blood -- that kind of thing.
Crude grafitti "Faceless Charley eats roaches !!!-- Cannibal !!" to add 'flavor'.
Heh, another Asset - a Grafitti font (or several) particular/unique to Rapture's universe
All kinds of potential here.
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Have your own Jazz Band ?? :
Instruments you can play - ABC music notation (mentioned elsewhere) can have a complete band with your NPC Team members....
Ive seen other MMORPG have group playing (LOTRO had the Hobbiton Philoharmonic music thing every Thursday)
but never found out how they synchronized multiple players.
As usual the Copywrite vetting issues, but Im not sure how players playing an unofficial music selection as an ephemeral (disappears as soon as it comes into existance) works legally.
Player composed stuff - no problem (and there is talent enuf out there...)
Rediculous Gibs (Gibblets) - A protest against Game Violence :
A game option setting slider which will magnify the blood and guts results (and the screaming and burbbling) to make any of the violence bizzare and absurd (I remember doing this on Redneck Rampage and changing the cryptic scripting to make every corpse a explosion and volcanoe of gibs (gibblets was the game industry term for pieces and guts that go flying in the various violence results).
For faint hearted Players, gibs turned into 'flowers and rainbows' ARE COMPLETELY POSSIBLE as a plugin option ..... hmmm -- thats not blood its flower petals and the dead person is a pile of cute kittens and puppies... Seriously stuff like this COULD be done and lead to more creativity than ANYTHING ever seen in an MMORPG. Someday - if the game companies get off their pathetic unimaginitive cowardly arses ....
McClendon - Robotic Genius :
Robots usually fail if they have to be controlled by computers outside of themselves (when not self-contained) as poor communications dont work for split second interactions realworld Robots require to function properly.
So McClendon needed very small computers which could fit in his products, and was the person who pushed development for the Bio-electronics (which Porter later used to build The Thinker). The miniturization was successful enough to get additional monies from others wanting the technology for conventional computers (and resulted in further developments and improvements).
The ADAM genetic technologies enabled the manipulation of nerve tissue leading to the breakthroughs.
The resulting Biological mechanisms were what C. M. Porter needed if he was to simulate what the Human Brain did to create his artificial intelligence.
By the time of the Civil War, the 'smart' security devices (we saw in BS1) were possible (the Fly-bots were a major achievement because of their complex operations)
Idea for them thar Consoles to run this here MMORPG :
It is likely various consoles will lack a complete set of interfaces a PC would offer (and older ones computing power), and something like a Voice Command system (interface) might be an assistance for much of the fast order issuing operations which ordinary menu-selection methods would be too cumbersome for. Taking voice input and feeding it thru the Internet connection to be heard and interpretted by a Server could be a workable system. With bandwidths going up, phone quality sound data traffic is not overly heavy. Ditto for Voice-to-Text which could serev as the 'bubble over players heads' method of viewing what Players say (and cutting down significantly the data traffic for all that 'voicifying' between Players -- I personally dislike the chat-box interface because of having to constantly look at it (away from the priimary screen) and it not being instantly clear who said what...
- Delay issue - thru internet to server and result sent back to Client (particularly for Commands)
- Short sentence commands (3 words max) - most effective when 99%+ correct interpretation is required
- Session context - so system can be customized to a Player (vocabulary training data for Commands partuicularly) and possible adjustments for free-speak Voice-To-Text interpretation.
- Server computing power requirement - farmed off to seperate Servers (something like 50MIPs required for competant translation processing.
Did we kill The Thinker ?? :
As Sigma, did we kill off everyone who had continued maintaining The Thinker ? So is it now going to die ?
The technology The Thinker had been rebuilt with (the tube stuff NEVER worked out) was alot more stable, and the system also has redundancy/flexibility built into it to bypass failing components (a routine occurance). Also, there were alot more people there in Minervas Den than we ever saw (we never saw where they eat and sleep, etc... Only a small part of the entire place (for it to exist in a mostly 'cutoff ' state from the rest of Rapture.) They (Minervians) would eventually creep out and continuing the only thing they had done for years - servicing the computers (and mopping up the blood you spattered everywhere). Even with Wahl gone, the routine would continue (probably with advice from The Thinker itself -- interesting conversation - the next phone call from Hephaestus or Neptunes Bounty).
Psychology of The Thinker - "Well I'm not going anywhere fast, so might as well keep things running while I figure out what to do next." News of Porter and Tenebaums failure on The Surface forced a 'rethink'...
Delta - Why he could be Reconsituted :
Delta was reconstructed from mulch??? (died many years earlier), but its possible his remains were hauled away for a post-mortem by the company who provided the Protectors (subsidiary of Ryan Industries at that time), which might make it a little more likely for Eleanor to find more than just DNA to rebuild him from.
Sigma was probably put 'into storage' while still in one piece (sort of), after becoming unstable (a frequent occurance for Alphas). The Civil war intefered with anything further, until Tenenbaum started reviving some to assist her in trying to save Little Sisters (plot of the Protector Trials - http://bioshock.wikia.com/wiki/The_Protector_Trials)
Eleanor could have found the records of which one was her 'Daddy'.
So how did Deltas corpse get to Adonis Spa Resort? How did anything else - little red wagon pulled by Little Sisters thru air vents...
Problem - How did 'Johnny' then get produced as a clone (for that exciting story you will have to play the MMORPG to find out.)
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Great Minds :
The Vita Chambers can 'bring back the dead' ?? From DNA ?? (Well, how does the DNA get to that Vita-Chamber if YOU are dead?? Well ignoring that little issue...) Someone suggested to Ryan that he send Agents on the surface to recover the DNA of the greatest minds in history (Ryan shouldnt be bothered by desecrating graves, etc..). Sinclairs advertising BS seems to have too many dupes believing it. Ryan himself knows it doesn't work that way, and the advanced features of the Vita-Chambers are really just sophisticated resuscitation. Anyway, a plot by some group of Rapturites thinking that this is the answer to 'saving Rapture' and their disastrous adventures, and the story for the disinformation film 'The North Atlantic Project'. No doubt someone called Booker and another called Elizabeth viewed this movie in a B-theater and called it rediculous crap - should have seen "Plan 9" instead....
Cause for Rapture's "Decline" :
"many Rapture citizens felt that essential jobs such as food processing, cleaning, and simple maintenance were beneath them. This led to widespread dissatisfaction when these jobs were neglected, leading to an eventual economic recession throughout Rapture."
Likely not true. There were plenty of ordinary people there to escape things in the Surface World (post-WW2 there were millions who would leave where they were to simply to get to a better place). Those people (unlike many today) actually knew how to work and accepted it. The earlier economic downturn was when the major city construction ceased, and a number of construction workers had to readjust and re-integrate into the economy (which they apparently largely did, as that was around 1952). So for that 'recession', things were able to get back to normal.
The BIG economic distress happened because of Fontaine using ADAM as a tool to try to take over - the Kashmir Incident (and other attacks) broke confidence in public safety, and the economy could not operate normally with murderous Splicers wandering the streets (Rapture had not been a police state and Ryan's men were not really equipt to deal with ADAM-powered terrorists). The Audio Diaries spoke of a 'Run on the Bank' which disrupted normal business operations, as citizens become more cautious and bunkered down. Businesses failed, and then more people cant pay others, and it snowballs.
So it was NOT disatisfaction with 'menial' jobs, but LACK of jobs which gave Fontaine/Atlas easy prey for his 'easy promises' to desperate people. And since this is a shoot-em-up game, no other solutions could/would be offered which might prevent the dystopic situation required for the mass-slaughter behavior of the Player (ontop of the less-than-human zombie-like Splicers).
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"Decodence" definition... (found on a Diesel Punk website)
Patching a Game :
One thing many game companies get away with is not bothering to fix significant game problems. But then Ive also seen companies who on most patches break more than they fix. One would hope with this MMORPGs cost savings, that more efforts could be dedicated to fixing game mechanics problems (certainly it has more complexity than any existing one, adding to that task). Perhaps, if more than one genre was done with the same Engine (the entire toolset etc..) then the shared use would bring more resources ($$$) to bear.
Potentially, with the Player Creation testing tools, the Players could assist significantly by presenting the programmers with exact cases where the problems occur, and also snapshot data in game to supply more clues to a problem. The parts of the programming/scripting created by Players would be directly accessible and fixable by them as well (alot of potential knowhow, skill and time there...). Game mechanics in particular would (hopefully) get stringent testing before being put onto the production Servers (at least more than your typical MMOPRG these days).
With the pathetic showing for the product of the Game Industry these days something like this has to eventually happen or we are destined to ever declining crap.
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Smuggling was expensive and thus more than a little exclusive (who could afford the goodies) :
- Covert operations always cost more.
- Costs of the basic transport hundreds of miles by Submarine at the closest (surface ships had to stay sufficiently far away to avoid Ryan's detection). Just operating the subs costs money - fuel, maintenance, etc...
- Coercion costs/inefficiencies. Forcing people to do something they might face the Death Penalty for causes a great deal more effort to be employed over simple ordinary 'legal' operations. Many people will refuse, leading to employing some inept/inexperiences personnel to work the operation.
- Fontaine may not have had competant lieutenants to work the operation for him, leading to all kinds of mishandling and inefficency.
- Labor costs... (simply more to do, more labor required - adding to expenses).
- Profit - the whole thing has to make a profit or wouldnt be done. Big expenses means more profits required to overcome the risks.
- Bribes for various people to 'turn the other way', especially as rewards were offered by The City Council.
- Facilities needed/required (cost alot more for it having to be hidden). Lots of extra overhead costs.
- Competition from other Smugglers. Fontaine would need to find THEM to put them out of operation and he might run into people tougher than he was (or ready to finger HIM to Ryan and put HIM out of business).
- Operatives on 'The Surface' have to be maintained to do the buying, and whatever facilities the Subs interact with need to be maintained. Whoever they 'interact with' (if convert as the most likely were) needed to be paid off or cause additional expenses/difficulties (Fontaine might not be able to toy with the ruthless type of people he would have to deal with).
- Whatever Fontaine is using to pay the Surface people, its not going to be 'Rapture Dollars'. If they directly wont take things traded from Rapture, then there are additional 'Fencing' overhead expenses involved converting what items Fontaine can obtain into money his contacts do accept. As time went on 'liquid' assets from Rapture would dwindle in availability to be used as payment.
So, the result of all this is : that the smuggling costs so much that the price in Rapture will be exorbitant, even for mundane things, and most people would not be willing (or could not) pay for them. This leads to the whole operation not being quite as large as the Prohibition era schemes that mobsters had (everyone wanted a drink...). High prices meant more likelihood of potential production in Rpature itself.
It is part of the game author's Contrived fiction forcing the plot along, that such an operation could ever be hidden for so many years without sufficient 'proof' available to Ryan to shut it down and lock Fontaine up (doubly so after the Smuggling Death Penalty was in effect).
Its actually unlikely that someone wouldn't have done a 'shotgun takeover' of Fontaine's little criminal empire.
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Only one law in Rapture - "NO CLOWNS" :
- Apollo square the corpses of Clowns can be seen hung up as a warning to others...
- So Atlas appeared much like 'Bozo' when he was rabble rousing his mob. "Ryan the Tyrant has Banned Clowns!!! This CANNOT stand!!!!!"
- Seltzer Water Plasmids became the bane of Rapture!!! Wrecked the economy, made Rapture the hellhole it is now.
- Ever see 50 clowns emerge from one Bathysphere - its one of Ryan's childhood nightmares!!!
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Note -- it is very hard to create a limeric about "a man from Rapture"
http://rhymezone.com/ (few words rhyme...)
Their once was a man from Rapture,
A Houdini Splicer he did try to capture.
He tried to beat it utterly senseless,
in order to render it defenceless,
but got only a bell and a red misty blur.
blur burr er err fir
fur her myrrh per purr
shirr sir slur spur stir
Kyburz a bit late on the scene (SitS 1967 newspaper article about 1947 disapperance) :
1947 - when Rapture's construction was already well under way (a alot of power would have already been needed to do that and to power the sections of The City (like for the first at the 1946 dedication). Kyburz was probably impressed by Ryan, who himself had set up Hesphaestus (electrical genius,..). Of course Ryan needed expertise to expand and maintain the power system for the growing city (an expansion which took til 51-52 and saw a massive expansion of the entire system).
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Funniest things Ive seen in Bioshock :
I was playing in Minervas Den on Hard, and was sniping a bit in Operations before moving on to 'The Thinker' level -- to boost my resources (as if you really need much in The Thinker half-level) and also just to play with the weapons/plasmid/splicer combinations. I stayed for an extended period near the entrance/programmings/airlock area for quite a while and then eventually headed down to the exit tunnel to the 'The Thinker' (I had already played thru all of it previously except for one last LS corpse harvest) ). Anyway, there I ran into 30-40 Wintery Houdini Splicers which had spawned repeatedly (without removing the previous one or body while I was way down the other end of the complex). The game suddenly slowed down when they became active and even more when I used incinerate on them. Because they were in close proximity, they all repeatedly set each other on fire, and they added damage upon each other. Some teleported out to be around me (about 10) and I had to fight them and I eventually retreated way back to near that airlock where the hacked Rocket Turret was still operating. I mopped up what was left there, and going back flamed and shot a much reduced number of them again till they were all dead. Lockboxes everywhere. Anyway this was some spawn bug in that scenarios scripting. While Sniping for so long (trying different things). It became apparent how limited the respawn combinations were (start positions, specific Splicer types), as you generally dont hang around anywhere as long as I did, so most people wouldnt notice.
(I also noticed - how fast respawns reset -- and right when you enter doorways to the 'area' -- them popping into existence as you watched .... another scripting 'no-no' -- but then it was DLC - third-string scripters, rushed schedules, etc, etc...).
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Ryans rise as an Industrialist :
Ryans Electric Plasma well-drilling head device (used in his oil fields) was the basis for his latest industrial fortune, and was also the thing which made the Geothermal Power system at Hespaestus/Vulcans Forge/Hudson possible (and thus RApture itself). Other less efficient drilling technologies would have been impractical - Ryan's technology allowed many more lower capacity 'wells' to be constructed faster and cheaper, and continuing additions/replacements as the existing wells failed/clogged over the years.
The plasma cutters also greatly lowered the cost of various kinds of construction (digging thru rock for one) and more than a few industrial processes (requiring heat processing ...). The numerous farms built in bedrock tunnels were far cheaper to build than buildings.
Other components of Ryans power technologies were also used in the City's energy distribution systems powering Rapture.
The Radio/Radar/Electronic Jammers used as a surface defense around Rapture's location could also be attributed to Ryans engineering abilities.
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DO you feel Lucky? Well do you ... :
Gambling in one Casino - The Slug Races - The Rapture Derby won by Slimey Jim was a truely memorable race (reminiscent of Sea Biscuit) ...
Some people will bet on anything - how about if the payoff is ADAM (heh - maybe in the role-playing 'Splicer Game', is not quite as interesting to ex-Splicers who dont value that substance as they once had) ???
"If you want to bet on a sure thing, bet on New Rapture !!"
Slot machines remade to use the New Money (not the now confetti-like valueless Old money)
At least in New Rapture, if you 'lose your shirt' gambling, you dont wind up slumped in an alleyway in Paupers Drop or locked into Fontaine's Soup Kitchen being ranted at or being asked to give blood. You can now always get a meal AFTER washing a few windows for the City or cleaning out a sewer.
Nitrogen Narcosis :
Treatment seen on advertisements -- why? In Raptures early days divers did alot of work (the minor depths close to surface for pre-construction - not many went down deep where the City was). ADAM-based solutions only came along long after most of the City construction was finished (1952).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nitrogen_narcosis (why few divers worked around city...)
One of the important genetic mods (a Tonic) which Big Daddies (Construction Cyborgs) had was to prevent this problem and allowed them to operate at depths many times any non-Hardsuited diver could.
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Nazi Programs ?? Tenenbaums hidden past ?? :
It is possible that there were other undocumented programs (even as anal-retentive as the Germans already were about documenting really nasty stuff). Advanced genetic research could be an iffy enough area for some special SS involvement (all the infighting in the bureaucracies/factions of different Reich government entities).
Now that would have been a real bomb to drop -- that the Nazis were secretly trying to develop equivalent of Plasmids back there/then and that is where Tenenbaum got more than a few ideas - leading her to recognize what she had when the SeaSlug incident happened (the missing component the Nazis never managed to develop (OR DIDN'T THEY ???) ...).
(((Heh - add 'the Nazi Connection' to possible MMORPG storylines -- there already is that rumored secret Arctic base that survived after the war... Most turn out to be 'crazy Splicer rumors',but who knows...)))
"Come back when you have some money, Buddy!!" (BS1) :
Hmm, I have lots of money - why are you saying this when Ive clicked on something I already are maxed out in (like med-kits/Eve/whatever). I'm carrying around stuff that weighs more than 10X the proverbial Kitchen Sink... MMORPG needs a bit more flexible inventory system. Want to carry around a cumbersome pile of Beef-E tins (now with more 'Real' artificial Beef Flavor, brought to you by Sinclair Chemicals)?? As long as you have something to carry it in (equipment baggies) and can stagger around under the weight. Just dont come crying to me when you cant outrun that horde of Splicers who descend upon you.
Old City Sections :
How much of Rapture would have been old unused areas, which no longer have much activity (Paupers Drop long before we saw it was an example the result of the Atlantic Express's passenger service being largely discontinued.
Other areas would be those used for the primary City construction, which ceased around 1952.
Of course constructing new buildings is expensive so they likley would be reused. Example - Dionysus Park had been the main Cement Plant for the building of Rapture, and was redone as the Art Complex (notice it didnt have much multi-story in its construction, and rather high ceilings which were used to fit the huge machinery which once was inside).
Even Paupers Drop was redeveloped (all those fancy rundown Art Deco buildings there are not normal 'under the tracks' industrial type surroundings. It was possibly Sinclair who redeveloped that neighborhood around his Sinclair Deluxe Hotel, itself far above the squalor of Fontaines tenements and poorhouses (the Audio Diaries seem intent to smear Sinclair as an 'evil' capitalist for some reason). Alot of the grubbiness in that area looks to have grown during Lamb's regime and after Sinclair was forced out.
So for the MMORPG, that means there would be sections of Rapture long vacated and run down, along with areas which look like they wre once something else before being repurposed by various entreprenurs
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