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What Should An Official Nightmare on Elm Street Game Be Like?

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As cool as it is that Freddy's now playable in DBD, It's not exactly the best representation of what the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise is all about. Freddy doesn't need to chase you down open grounds or inside houses like Jason Voorhees or Michael Myers would, he's already inside your head and your whole psyche's his playground. Unfortunately, that's kind of the problem with making an official Nightmare on Elm Street game. When you've got a setting like the Dream World where everything's possible, it doesn't lend itself easily to an asymmetrical multiplayer game with a defined structure and limited capabilities. So, there's the question for you all: How do you make a game that's a fun, satisfying and accurate Nightmare on Elm Street experience? How do you adapt the concepts, rules, and iconic elements of the films into a multiplayer game's structures and mechanics? Let's put our noggins together and figure this out!

Edited by Malken
specified that I'm talking about making an asymmetrical multiplayer game

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First off DBD takes these icons and just tosses them in the air hoping they land in the playground!  I really hope people that like DBD don't think there now was a Freddy game or Texas chainsaw Massacre game!  

As far as A Nightmare On Elm Street I believe it would be the easiest horror game to develope as far as creativity is concerned ... the developers could have so much fun getting crazy in a single player dream world of whacky things happening like on dream warriors with snake Freddy popping out of the floor or part 2 school bus scene and so on!

......A single player to venture through a huge town finding answers that lead to clues and pieces who Freddy is and collect all pieces of the sweater and glove to bring Freddy to the real world and kill him for once and for all! Don't forget there is a timer that's set to 5 minutes unless you find coffee on the map you will fall asleep for 5 minutes in Freddy's world where you might become the next soul of children!

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Naturally, having Freddy, Myers or Leatherface in DBD will never be quite accurate to their respective franchises, since it's still its own game. I just thought I'd acknowledge it to insure people didn't think I wasn't aware he was recently added in there. You're right, though, a single player game would actually be easy to develop, and I guess I hadn't actually specified it in the OP, but what I was referring to was making an asymmetrical multiplayer game. I'll edit my OP to avoid any further confusion as to what I meant.

I think most people would agree that using the Dream Warriors and Dream Master films as a template is definitely the way to go, since the concept of dream powers translates easily into game mechanics. Including a fear mechanic ala F13 also seems like a no brainer, but it'd have to play a much more intricate role in a Freddy game, because he needs his victims to be afraid in order to be able to harm them.         

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Well I do not think a multi-player game in the same vein as F13 could be used for a nightmare on elm street. It would likely have to be a single player game. The dream world and Freddy's control inside of it would have to be scripted events. I would love to see a single player game made for nightmare on elm street. I will even admit as poorly done as it was like the F13 game I enjoyed the NES version. Today's tech that type of game would be insane. That's why I was really happy to get Friday the 13th up to current standards. Looking forward to the single player content and I love the multi-player aspect as well. I am all for new horror games with the icons. I never understood why more did not pursue this avenue since game design has changed so much since then. 

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@JPops Granted, a multiplayer mode that's faithful to the films would definitely be more difficult to design than a single player mode, but I'd hardly call it impossible to achieve. In fact, having both modes in the game would probably be for the best, since each could focus on a different aspect of the films (similarly to what Wes was saying when he compared the F13 challenge mode and multiplayer to reel 1 and 3 of the films).

For instance, I couldn't make up my mind whether or not I'd prefer a Freddy game to involve players starting out in the real world and struggling to stay awake as long as possible (since that's a major part of the tension of the films), or have each match start with them already asleep (since that's usually the most exciting part of each film). If the game had both a single and multiplayer mode, we could actually use each method and they'd both fit perfectly within their respective context.

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If it were a multiplayer game like this one Freddy would have to be like a dungeon master who has control over lots of things happening on the map, and isn't just a guy moving around it. It would be like a strategy game for him most of the time.

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@MichaelMemers Yeah, I came to a similar conclusion regarding controlling the environment. It'd definitely play a much bigger part than it does in F13 or DBD, but I think there's still ways to balance it out with more direct interaction with Freddy' player. Here's a few ideas I had so far...

SURVIVORS
Each match can have up to 6 survivors. They are already asleep and in the dream world as the match starts. They have 3 ways to survive the match:

  • Beat the Timer: The players are woken up by their alarm clocks.
  • Escape: The players wake themselves up from within the dream, like Nancy did with the steam pipes in the original movie, just more elaborate.
  • "Kill" Freddy:  The players must use teamwork and complete a series of steps to defeat Freddy within the nightmare.

DREAM POWERS
Each survivor gets one (or several) dream power. Before the game starts, one player also gets picked (randomly or assigned) to be the Dream Master, which gives the additional power to either travel into someone else's dream or bring other players into their own. For variety's sake, dream powers shouldn't be automatically linked to specific survivors, but rather the players should have the option to pick which one they want to assign to their characters. Dream powers could either work like perks (usable at any point in the match, but under specific circumstances), give a certain set of abilities with a cool down factor, or be a special ability that can be used all the time, but must first be powered up during the match in order to become available.

MAPS
Maps could simply be fixed settings like they are in F13 or DBD, but I actually thought of something that might be an interesting alternative. Split the map in 7 areas. The central area is always Elm Street/Freddy's house, and each area around it represents a player's dream set in a location taken from the films (boiler room, high school, auto salvage yard, etc.). These locations can be randomly or manually assigned to any sector before the match starts. Each area has a randomly generated exit point leading to Freddy's house. Survivors remain isolated and trapped inside their area/dream unless they're summoned by the Dream Master or find the hidden exit point and dare to venture inside Freddy's house in order to find a path leading into another player's dream.

FREDDY
Freddy starts each match in his own house, but he's relatively weak at this point and needs to increase the survivors' fear levels in order to grow stronger. Freddy can increase fear by chasing survivors, attacking them directly, or by using "traps" which could come in a variety of forms: 

  • Creepy Apparitions: Like the jump-roping little girls, Tina in her body bag, etc.
  • Delaying Traps: Like gooey stairs and floors to slow down escaping survivors.
  • Environment Possession: Items and scenery come to life to cause jump scares. These could become lethal if the fear levels are at maximum.

Setting these traps could be done like in F13, with a fixed number of times you can do it per area/match, or as an ability with a cool down period, or my personal favorite, in a similar way to the "Predator Mode" that'll be used in Last Year (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VhLG9KlLycA). Every time Freddy kills another player, he absorbs their soul, which boosts his speed, slashing damage and reduce the cool down period for his abilities. So essentially, the more he scares survivors, the easier they are to kill, and the more of them he kills, the easier the others will be to scare and kill.

 

So what do you guys think? Got any ideas of your own or ways to refine those I just listed?

  

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I think the game would have to have some kind of jump scare/fear system in it, preferably similar to the sanity feature in Eternal Darkness. In that game, certain things would happen as your character's sanity decreased: bugs crawling across the screen, environments warping, strange sounds happening. It was pretty cool.

Quote

players must keep watch on a Sanity meter – a green bar which decreases when the player is spotted by an enemy. As the bar becomes low, subtle changes to the environment and random, unusual events begin to occur, which reflect the character's slackening grip on reality. While minor effects include a skewed camera angle, heads of statues following the character, and unsettling noises, more stronger effects include bleeding on walls and ceilings, entering a room that is unrealistic before finding that the character never left the previous room, the character suddenly dying, and fourth wall breaking effect such as "To Be Continued" promotions for a "sequel", and simulated errors and anomalies of the TV or GameCube; while the latter does not affect gameplay, they can be misconstrued by the player as being actual technical malfunctions. When the bar is completely empty, further damage to Sanity effectively damages health.

 

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On 11/29/2017 at 8:48 AM, JPops said:

Well I do not think a multi-player game in the same vein as F13 could be used for a nightmare on elm street. It would likely have to be a single player game. The dream world and Freddy's control inside of it would have to be scripted events. I would love to see a single player game made for nightmare on elm street. I will even admit as poorly done as it was like the F13 game I enjoyed the NES version. Today's tech that type of game would be insane. That's why I was really happy to get Friday the 13th up to current standards. Looking forward to the single player content and I love the multi-player aspect as well. I am all for new horror games with the icons. I never understood why more did not pursue this avenue since game design has changed so much since then. 

i still have both Friday the 13th and Nightmare on Elm Street for NES.Both are awesome,but felt Nightmare could have used a difficulty selection,as the game was quite hard for me,even when playing with 3 of my friends.It would make a nice current gen game if it got a similar treatment like F13,however,i think i would still want it to be a 4 player adventure game,and not a 7 VS 1 game like F13 is.I don't really like Player VS Player games.I'd rather have a Nightmare game be a 4 player co-op adventure/RPG,but still having nods to the movies.

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An amnesia style game where freddy tries to fill your scare meter (scooby doo Style for the SNES) and when it fills he can go after you so you have to either find somewhere to hide or decrease your fear meter.

 

Shouldnt be difficult to program something along that line.

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For a multiplayer have it take place in the dream world.  Maybe have a cutscene at the start of a match of everyone falling asleep, kinda like a Dream Warriors thing.  The objective would be to stop Freddy or “wake up” all the counselors.   There would be npcs running around or hiding that the players would have to find to “wake them up”.  Freddy would have the job of killing the hiding counselors or the players aka Dream Warriors to become stronger.  The more Freddy kills the more abilities that he can use are unlocked.  Maybe at the start/lobby you can pick which powers you would want him to have.  Just some rough ideas.  Gotta think more on it.  

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