Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Crowd Funding as a Game Mechanic

Some of you may read my posts about Stellar Fortune before.  For those that haven't, it is basically my ever evolving game project where I try new ideas.  I've been working on it a bit over the past few weeks.  In its simplest form it is a web-based space trading game.

I'm not super interested in making a violent game at this point, so I've been focused on making it more economic.  There are plenty of games where you just kill stuff, so I wanted to do something a little different.  That's not to say there won't be combat, it would just be abstracted.

Anyway, back to the subject.  Kickstarter and other similar sites have really taken the gaming world by storm.  So I thought it might work out as an actual part of my game.

In Stellar Fortune, the galaxy is a blank slate, except for the beginning worlds.  It would be up to the players to build the infrastructure to exploit the rest of the galaxy.  These are pretty big endeavors, so I want players to cooperate (and compete) to get the job done.

That's where Crowd Funding comes in, or in this case, Public Projects.  They are issued by the 'Game Master' (me).Here's an example...

Project: Mining Operations.  A search of the CoreDB revealed plans for an automated mineral extractor.  This would be a major improvement over our current surface collection methods.  In order produce the first prototype, we need resources.

Iron: 5,000 units
Copper: 100 units

Unlocks: Small Mineral Extractor Schematic

There would be market Buy Orders setup for the Iron and Copper, which when filled will complete the Project.  The new schematic would be available for everyone to buy and free to those who contributed.   There could be different levels of contribution and rewards too.

Other examples would be to construct a Jump Gate, or Space Port although I have not really figured out how to properly reward players for those.

New projects would become available, introducing new aspects to the game.  The players, game and game world would all grow together.