Patrick Curry’s Thoughts on Game Design


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August 14th, 2006

Game Idea #33: Let’s Go Camping

It’s summer-time. The great outdoors is calling…

High Concept:

Let’s Go Camping is a strategy game for kids of all ages. Instead of directing little army men around to do your bidding, you control a group of kids spending the weekend out in the wilderness. It’s up to you to help the kids make it back home in one piece!

Platform:

PC

Why it needs to be made:

Real-time strategy games are a favorite of mine, but I haven’t played many that venture out of the standard mold of building up a bunch of units and then throwing them into battle. Let’s Go Camping is all about having fun with your pals and the activities that go into a successful campout.

Description:

The plans have been made for the perfect campout. The gang will head out first thing Friday, set up camp, and spend the weekend enjoying everything the lake has to offer. But there’s lots to be done, and it’s up to you to assign everyone their jobs around the campfire to make sure you have food, shelter, and are relatively safe from the creatures that lurk outside.

All of the jobs on a campout are interdependent. Someone has to carry in the gear before a tent can be setup. Tie those knots right, or the tent might fall over or blow away in the middle of the night. Cooking dinner needs a campfire, and it’s even better with some fresh fish from the lake. And make sure you clean up after yourselves, or you might get some unwanted visitors in the middle of the night!

Why it will be fun:

Fending for yourself out in the woods is an empowering experience. It’s especially rewarding when you’re out with your friends, and all counting on each other to survive. While they might sound like chores, chopping firewood, catching fish, and starting fires are all very fun in their own right, and I imagine would be even more fun when these activities all contribute to a larger game.

Final thoughts:

While this isn’t a particularly competitive game, being woken up in the middle of the night by a couple of grizzly bears is a pretty wild experience… best experienced in the safety of a videogame.


2 Responses to “Game Idea #33: Let’s Go Camping”

  1. Devin commented:
    posted August 15th, 2006 at 2:00 pm

    Camping with a group is the ultimate learning experience. Whether it is car camping or high adventure - the difference between a good experience and a bad experience is planning. And the only way to learn that virtue is through trial by fire. This is a game I could totally get into because of that.

    Also another thing that I could really get into relates back to one of the Boy Scout’s Outdoor Virtues - Leave everything better than how you found it. There could be all kinds of mini-games related to erosion control - litter pickup - water conservation…etc that would be challenging and could directly affect the next camping experience at that location.

    I see this as a fun game that I would like to have as an aide for planning and teaching outdoor values

  2. Oldtimer commented:
    posted August 18th, 2006 at 1:51 pm

    Love the idea.
    Terrain, season and weather should be variable to keep it interesting.
    Forests, deserts, beaches, mountains, etc.
    Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter
    Sun, rain, snow, wind, etc.


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