A Design Exercise: Resident Evil 5 Co-op Mission

16 Jul

So, Resident Evil 5 has just announced that it will support co-op.  Yes, the series has dabbled in cooperative play, but we’re talking two player online co-op here.  And what does that mean?  There need to be some pretty awesome scenarios to warrant the addition of co-op.  And you’re going to make one.

The challenge this week is to describe a Resident Evil 5 mission wherein cooperative play serves a vital role.  Approach this as a pitch, as if  you’re convincing your lead designer that your level is going to complement the gameplay best.  Please try to keep it brief and concise.

To give you an idea of what kind of missions have already been exposed, take a look at the video below, narrated by Capcom’s Gearoid Reidy.

The video shows that RE5 has room for context-sensitive ‘team moves’ over terrain, and gives you an idea of what a scenario could be like, with Chris (player 1) providing sniper support for Sheva (player 2) and then having Sheva open a door for Chris by shooting off the lock.

Here are your three constraints:

  • The scenario must hinge on cooperation between the two players, and provide either lots of back and forth or interesting static roles.  An example of back and forth would be the two players taking turns covering one another as they move down a street, while an example of interesting static roles would be having Chris cover Sheva from the rooftops while she makes her way through the street.
  • The scenario must keep players informed of where their teammates are — it’s fine to separate the players, but separate them for too long and they will lose track of one another and forget they are supposed to be working together.
  • The scenario must be designed to function with one player in single player.  For instance, in the video example, we can assume that Chris could have completed the mission using a different route.  We have no idea how Capcom is handling this, but for the sake of this exercise, assume that one player will have to be able to complete your mission.

Co-op has become increasingly popular in videogames, but remember that the mark of a good co-op level is team work.  If your players are not working together and exerting some control over each others survival, then it’s not really cooperative is it?  Just putting two players in a game and leaving it at that does not a co-op experience make.

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One Response to “A Design Exercise: Resident Evil 5 Co-op Mission”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. More Co-op — Schizoid Review « Vancouver Game Design - July 19, 2008

    […] of the game this week.  If you haven’t checked it out already, take a gander at the latest design exercise […]

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