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  Mechanic #120 - Secret Identity
Posted: 06/15/11

A player versus player game where one must maintain a secret identity.

  Secret Identity




This is a player versus player game that takes place in a fairly large, open city environment. Each player has the ability to transform into a giant, Kaiju-like create (you know, Godzilla, Mothra, Gamera, King Kong). When not a monster, they are a generic human character, indistinguishable from the hundreds of other NPCs running around, fleeing from the giant monsters.

The object of the game is to kill the other players. The problem is, while monsters, the players are invincible. They can only be killed as humans. The players can only maintain monster form for a limited time. When that time is up, they revert back to human form instantly.

As a human, the monster timer starts to build up. The longer you remain a human, the more time you can be a monster. Likewise, you will get increasingly strong, and increasingly large monsters that you can transform into. Attacking a monster will reduce its time limit, though there will always be at least 10 seconds of warning so the monster can run off and hide.

When a monster transforms into a human, it is a random NPC indistinguishable from the other NPCs. If one player see another player go from monster to human, that human will glow (as in, his secret identity is spoiled) until which time he transforms into a new monster.

Monsters can topple buildings and cause random chaos. Humans are largely invincible. Dropping a building on them will squash them, but after a few seconds, they'll pop back up. Setting them on fire will cause them to go running around like... well, like they are on fire. But they'll eventually fizzle. However, larger monsters can pick up humans and eat them, one by one. That's the only way to permanently kill a human. To kill the other players, the monster player must find the other players in human form (perhaps by watching their behavior) and devour them - preferably before they have enough time to generate enough monster time to transform.

Human have some limited abilities. They can pick up rocket launchers to fight against the monsters, or drive tanks. Of course, doing so would instantly make it obvious that they are a player. The main advantage is that they can drain their enemy's timer without using up their own. Some of the smaller monster forms can not devour humans, but they are nigh invincible as long as their timer holds out and can attack other monsters.

Ideally, the monster timers would be such that most players would be human most of the time, and only one or two players would be monsters at one time. I imagine situations would happen where two humans recognize each other and transform into monsters, fighting a bit, and then fleeing to transform in privacy. This would force both of them to be humans for a time while the other players hunt them.



Copyright 2007-2014 Sean Howard. All rights reserved.