I hate naming things.

2007, July 2nd 9:16 PM

I'm trying to come up with a few more Exotic weapons for D-Net. After some terrible ideas I came up with the concept of having half a dozen little drones following the player around, shooting at enemy tanks with rifles. It's a cool idea. I'm not yet sure how it will work, but I do like the idea.

The problem is that I already have a weapon class called "drones". They were originally called "rockets", but they also did exotic damage and rockets sound explosive. Now I needed a new exotic weapon name. Argh.

I eventually settled on Automaton. That sounds neat. I can live with Automaton. I'm certain I'm going to regret this decision eventually when I want to call something else "automaton", but hey! At least I have a name.

Now I'm trying to figure out what to do with Beam. I've got two weapons called Conversion Beam, one being a satellite weapon and one being a normal energy weapon. I guess I could rename the satellite version "Conversion Satellite", but it's part of a larger group which is all satellites, and there's no way I'm renaming them all "Satellite". On top of that, one of those subcategories – the Mines From Space – isn't consistent either – every other weapon type is "Variant Type", like "Heavy Railgun" or "Eliminator Drone", and mines are sometimes swapped.

So I either need to come up with a new term for "awesome-sounding laser weapon", or I need to come up with a new term for "lasers fired from space", and in any case I need to come up with three more terms for awesome mines from space. To say nothing of another half-dozen exotic and trap weapons I need to come up with, and another three or four special-purpose kinetic, energy, and explosive weapons.

I dunno, maybe Automatons should be trap weapons. I am considering having them hang around the area, even though there isn't much of a surprise component in them.


  • Bejoscha

    2007, October 23rd 10:50 PM

    Hmm. Sligth suggestion: It seems you are "growing" the game, so is it really necessary AT THIS TIME to find proper names? What I would do is to label them all plain simple as W1, W2, W3 etc. When you are DONE with it and have a much clearer and before all COMPLETE picture of all weapons, sit down again. Group them as you think it's logical (e.g. "beams" "mines" etc.) THEN make up your mind of new/cool/fitting etc. names – and never neglect the chances provided by internet-user. Jump in a forum, present your "categories" and ask others for advice. I am SURE there are freaks outside with thousands of cool names which they would love to be present in ANY game just for a line of credit in the end. (I would have been such a guy when I had more spare time than now.)

  • Zorba

    2007, October 24th 10:46 AM

    It is for a few reasons.

    First off, it's part of the game feel. I try to make the game feel right early on, so I can tweak that as I go. You get a very different game if your weapons are called "Rifle", "Electronuclear Transmission Warhead", or "Gamma Beam".

    Second, it makes things a whole hell of a lot easier for my testers. :D

    A lot of my weapons aren't designed because I came up with a neat idea, they're designed because there are certain categories I want them to fit in for game balance techniques. Often coming up with a name lets me figure out a good weapon behavior, and I've been taking advantage of that quite heavily.

  • asdf

    2007, December 1st 1:42 PM

    "Automaton" means self-operating machine. You could call this new weapon an automaton, but I'd suggest Autodrone, and have it at a pretty high price, since it's so useful. (Maybe 10000 of whatever credits you happen to use as a monetary unit?)

    Anyway, you seem to be developing a rather large game all at once. Why not show some of the smaller creations you made in the meantime?

  • Zorba

    2007, December 1st 1:46 PM

    I'm trying to avoid inventing words, even composite words – I want every weapon to just be descriptive (well, with one exception). Actually, since writing this I scrapped the entire concept of the Automatons and came up with some different weapons (the Rebounder Drone came out of this thought process, I believe.)

    I'm actually planning on making several posts in the future just showing off parts of the game – right now I'm also trying to put together a demo, but that's involving a lot of annoying fiddly bits. A lot.

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