Technologies in role-playing games. Part 2. Technology and technogen

    Technologies in role-playing games. Part 1. Technology and magic
    Technologies in role-playing games. Part 3. Technology in entourage and mastering

    In the first part, we examined the possibilities of modern electronics for modeling magic interactions in role-playing games. However, the interactions on RI with magic are not exhausted. Now there are a lot of technogenic games in which the technology itself plays a very important role.

    We list the situations in which modern technology can become part of the gameplay:
    • Game Engineering
    • Game-technical modeling of processes
    • Game Technology Communication
    • Technical and technogenic objects and artifacts

    Let's consider them in more detail. Often in sci-fi scenarios, the situation when the heroes need to restore damaged information systems, power units or communication systems in order to deal with the devilry that is happening on the location, send a message about themselves to the center, or simply survive, acts as a tie. The same situation can be a great start for the game, or part of it.

    Spare parts for destroyed systems and technical information on their restoration can be scattered around the playing ground, or obtained by players during the game in the process of solving a variety of technical puzzles. An example of such puzzles is:
    • Correct connection of various blocks with correct cables
    • Diagnostics of bad blocks
    • Assembly of several incomplete sets of parts of one complete
    • Running recovered systems
    • Hacking object information systems

    On the one hand, such tasks require specialized knowledge from the players, or at least readiness to delve into such puzzles, but on the other hand, they take the gameplay to a whole new level. Players really solve problems adequate to the game space, they can personally observe the results of their actions, work with completely realistic nodes, rather than abstract models. All this increases the level of wrolling and reduces the number of actions inappropriate to the game space, unbinds the game process from the need for permanent control by the masters and their direct intervention in it.

    Game-technical modeling of processes is also capable of greatly increasing the adequacy and realism of the game space, making the game more saturated and vibrant. The interface of some abstract SCADA-system, data analysis program or cracker program solves several problems at once. It allows you to naturally introduce the necessary models into the gameplay. It allows you to flexibly control the game process using parameters such as the success / failure of the operation, the time spent on the operation, the output of status data or warning about failures. The ability to remotely control such a program solves the issue of the direct presence of the master in the playing space. The beautifully drawn process of the program also significantly increases the atmosphere of the game.

    As examples of modeling programs in the game process, we can cite programs that simulate the development of viruses in the environment and analyze statistics with PRI “Noon, XXII century. Secrets of Pandora ” , held in 2009. On the game, as part of the game process, a bioblockade against viruses was synthesized, the genetic code of which was obtained by operations on the genetic codes of viruses and the animals of the planet Pandora. The interface of both programs is presented below:

    Interface of the program for step-by-step simulation of bio blockade operation

    Interface of the program for analyzing experimental statistics on bio blockade efficiency

    The gaming program can also emulate the operation of any units that provide power supply or vital activity of players, with the probability of disabling these units (overheating or muffling of the reactor, disruption of the air regeneration cycle) if players act incorrectly or sabotage. As an example of the interface of such a program, one can cite the interface of the nuclear reactor control program of the Martian research station of the Mars-Tefo interactorium located in the Cosmos pavilion of the All-Russian Exhibition Center.

    The interface of the nuclear reactor control program. Mars-Tefo Interactiveium

    At there is a page with links to the source codes of programs written for various role-playing projects.

    Adequate gaming space gaming technology communication is also able to greatly push the gameplay. Input data and information thrown during the game can be made out in the form of document files, pieces of working records from surveillance cameras or web-cameras. Information prepared in advance or recorded at the training ground in the playing space looks much more adequate than personal loads, contributes to wrolling and gives ample opportunity for the formation of quest lines.

    Raised jabber-chat on the consoles of teams located in different locations, broadcasting paging messages from the “artificial intelligence of the station” to personal wearable modules of players, as well as game file hosting greatly facilitate the loading of game information, eliminate the need for personal loading by the master players at the training ground, and strengthen connectivity locations, provide the ability to maintain hidden channels of communication between insiders in teams and their leadership, as well as many other opportunities to control, maintain and improve quality Grove of the process does not require direct personal communication between masters and igrotehami players.

    Transmitted messages do not have to be in the form of text or files. A siren that works in dangerous situations, voice warnings from intelligent systems of an object or characteristic sounds of accidents (hissing of outgoing air, noises working with a malfunctioning mechanism, etc.) not only bring the player's perception of the situation to a much higher level, but also allow you to give feedback to him about the results of his actions without breaking out of game reality.

    A separate item is man-made objects and artifacts. Like magical artifacts, they can be anything. Their range and game functionality largely depend only on the imagination of the masters and the game budget. A characteristic element of works and games around the world of “Stalker” are dosimetric devices, games in the “Fallout” universe - a multifunctional wrist computer “Pip Boy 3000”, games on the theme of international terrorism - a nuclear bomb. Devices can have both real prototypes and be completely invented. The positron reactor, Casimir generator, hyperspace transmitter and other devices may look like some high-tech artifacts, or they can be represented in the form of their control panels or remotes.

    Here are a few examples of devices actually manufactured on RI:

    The cycle of games "Dark Tower", MG "Rivendale" made a set of beacons and receiver-dosimeters, which, when registering the radiation of beacons, began to crackle like Geiger counters. When the maximum dose was set, the dosimeter began to squeak constantly. Deactivation was carried out by the master.

    PRI Kin-dza-dza, MG Rivendale produced a set of visors and pendants for players. Since the most budgetary solution was required, the visors were a standard DB-9 computer connector, in which the batteries and two LEDs were laid. The player’s response part, which was in the form of a pendant, contained jumpers, due to which, when the visitor was connected to the pendant, the corresponding LED was lit: orange for chatlanin, or green for patsaka.

    AT “Oh, Paris!”, Ostranna TG produced a non-automatic telephone exchange with 20 lines, operating on the principle of “Young lady, connect”, as well as a set of intercom phones for her. A photo of the station is presented below.

    Non-automatic telephone exchange. TG “Ostranna”

    AT “Aliens Underground”, TG “Ostranna” manufactured a set of Alien detectors. Each alien housed a transmitter with a motion sensor - an accelerometer. A moving Alien began to emit a signal. Turning the detector, it was possible to detect the signal source.

    Alien Detector with PRI Aliens Underground, TG Ostrana

    Alien Detector Interface. TG "Ostranna"

    On a series of games TG "Ostranna" made laser locks with the possibility of hacking. A closed lock projects a bright laser line onto the walls at the installation site. Crossing a guarded passage includes a siren. Using a hacker tool connected to a laptop with a special program, it is possible to break the lock and access its service functions.

    The laser lock is closed. Ostranna TG

    Artyom Sergeyev (Ksotar) has developed and continues to upgrade the role-playing version of the laser tag (ksotaropushki). Ksotaropushka keeps track of the available ammunition and types of charges. The defeat from the cannon cannon is made by a code sequence transmitted by a narrow beam in the infrared range, which must be reached by sensors mounted on the player’s head.

    For a series of Stalker games, Igor Fedorenko from Chuguev (Ukraine) developed and continues to upgrade a hardware-software complex of radio beacons-anomalies, a set of sensors for the interactive interaction of anomalies with the environment, “pills” and the personal wearable PDA “Luch”, which carries out registration of effects from various types of anomalies, as well as an indication of the player’s health,

    PDA “Ray” with the “pills” installed, Igor Fedorenko. Chuguev, Ukraine.

    Many interesting devices with detailed manuals for their manufacture can be found on . For example, the nuclear electromagnetic bomb A-35 Doomsday Device , or tracking collar .

    In some cases, it is not necessary to develop any technogenic artifacts separately, since the commercially available conventional devices are already adequate to the game space and can perform the actions necessary for the game process. For example, in the Silent Hill series of games held by the UK Rangers MG in the catacombs of the Aksai Military History Museum, the most common receivers and fm transmitters were used. Through transmitters transmitted ambient ambient music, game code phrases. Through such sets, it is also possible to play anomalous zones, detect artifacts or monsters while strengthening the transmitter on things or game equipment.

    Technologies in role-playing games. Part 3. Technology in the surroundings and mastering

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