Dark Shadows: Reincarnation Mark B. Perry Reveals the

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Author Topic: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game  (Read 2721 times)

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Offline GooberCollins

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Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« on: May 23, 2008, 08:29:41 PM »
I know that the words "Dark Shadows" and "video game" together conjure up images of Barnabas hopping Super Mario-style across various Collinsport locales, but hear me out here.

You could play as the last surviving member of the Collins family (or at least the last surviving one that wants Collinwood!). You've moved into Collinwood, now, being 2008, it's deserted and run-down. But there are different clues and puzzles left by various characters from the show's history in the house, and by solving them, you come to the game's Holy Grail, the thing that enables you to do the impossible: The not-so-sealed up Stairway Through Time. Again, think about it. The game could play as a point-and-click adventure mystery, no combat, just puzzles and dialogue. The Stairway Through Time and Parallel Time Room provide excellent jumping-off points for a developer to expand the game with extra content. Granted, most companies would die before accepting a game based on a 1960s soap opera, or even creating a tie-in to the latest Johnny Depp movie that wasn't an action film. But still, the possibilities of using the medium to explore and further the show's already enormous lore would be great. Seeing and fully exploring all forty rooms at Collinwood (Elizabeth did say that the house had 40 rooms, and it doesn't look like it has any more from the exterior, does it? [ghost_azn]) at various time periods/threads and talking to all its residents? I know I'd buy it.
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Offline retzev

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2008, 06:04:54 AM »
Yes.
"If you've lived a good life and said your prayers every night, when you die you'll go to Collinwood."  - Mark Rainey

Offline victoriawinters

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2008, 03:59:20 AM »
I believe a DS game would be totally fabulous.  Think about all the dungeons, graveyards, mausoleums, etc. there are in Collinwood.  Add to this mix Julia's lab with experiments go awry, time travel, Nicholas Blair and his minions, the very chief devil himself and you could have one challenging game.  It would not have to be like Super Mario at all.  It would make most sense as an RPG (Roll Playing Game). 

Barnabas, as the hero, would wield various spells with his cane and could turn into super vamp as needed.  Naturally, upon striking the baddie with his cane it would cry out "Willie".  Various heroes such as Quentin could be added in team play.  Julia could even wield her big syringe of drugs or medallion of control at incoming witches or those in possession mode.

This is a very good possibility when the movie gets released.  All blockbuster movies often have game tie-ins.  The original stars could even do the game voice-overs.  How great would that be?

My game controller is dancing up and down with all the fun possibilities.  [blob5]

Offline Cloak

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2008, 07:47:59 AM »
If it was on a handheld system would we be playing DS on a DS? :)

But  if they plan to make a game , wouldn't it be aimed towards the movie and not the TV series.  It would be cool to have a game where the original actors return, but how would you put a science-fiction soap opera into a game form and keep the beauty of it?

Offline victoriawinters

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2008, 11:14:00 AM »
If it was on a handheld system would we be playing DS on a DS? :)
lol.  These days, most games are cross-platform (PS3, XBox 360 and computer).

An originalist version of the game would hardly be possible since a game is a completely different art/technical form than a soap opera.  It could be it's only stand alone "episode".  Characters would make appearances and actually speak dialog from time to time.  This is where the original actors would be able to lend a hand to its making.  There are examples of several of the Buffy games that used original actors but followed it's own storyline and way of telling it.

Offline GooberCollins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2008, 02:27:22 AM »
The idea of Julia wielding a huge syringe and attacking with it is too hilarious to comprehend.

An RPG would be just as possible as a point-and-click adventure. I especially love the idea of incorporating a level of freedom into the way you play with it; Barnabas has huge potential as a character that the player could influence. Will you play him as the goody two-shoes vampire, the evil vampire, or a shade of gray? The player could "dispose of" the entire modern (as of 1967) Collins family and then simply lurk about Collinsport, seeing how people react to it, and terrorizing its residents. Of course, you could also play it totally differently. Dark Shadows, your version.

Then there's combat. So many possibilities based on weapons or powers Barnabas did or could have used. The psychic abilities would be the most fun to play with, but the cane or even hand-to-hand could work just as well. Julia's lab could function similarly to the alchemy in Morrowind and Oblivion; using various ingredients you collect across Collinsport, you can create potions for various effects, from the practical (ability boosts) to the goofy (laxative to spike Roger's brandy supply with).

 The possibilities are endless. But everything I'm talking about would require a huge development cycle. I think a studio like Bethesda Softworks would do extremely well with it, but as they're currently busy with Fallout 3 and The Elder Scrolls V, that's highly doubtful. After my experiences with Bully, I also think Rockstar Games could do a great job with a a small New England town as the setting, but they're probably too busy planning the next half-dozen Grand Theft Autos to bother with a game based on a soap, of all things. As for size, I think I could easily settle for a Collinsport only 1 or 2 square miles as opposed to the 16 in Oblivion, but done in at the very least 3 different time periods to add more variety.

And just because it's a blockbuster doesn't mean it's going to get a game. I haven't seen Sweeney Todd: The Game, yet, but I can only imagine what the Wii motion controls on that would be like.

The only real problem I can think of with the game would be time travel. If the player is given complete freedom, then that means they could go to 1897, toss Jamison out the window, and have the entire modern Collins family destroyed. The possibilities are a little too endless.
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Offline Lydia

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2008, 12:42:34 PM »
I have no experience with video games or role-playing games, but it seems to me that the possibilities, though many, could still be made finite.  The death of Jamison could result in the parallel time setup that we saw in 1970.

Offline GooberCollins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2008, 02:21:57 PM »
Or it might not. [spoiler]Gabriel and Edith's deaths should have completely changed history, resulting in no or a very differently formed Quentin, but as far as I remember, it didn't have any real effect.[/spoiler]
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Did a large procession wave their torches as my head fell in the basket,
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Offline Julianka7

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #8 on: May 26, 2008, 05:13:11 PM »
Hi GooberCollins,
Did you ever see the old Ninetendo game, Zombies Ate My Neighbors?
That would be a great type of game for DS. Change the scenes to
Dark Shadows scenery, the monsters, villians and all characters to
those from DS.

Offline GooberCollins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #9 on: May 26, 2008, 11:27:30 PM »
Dark Shadows: The Game: Barnabas Ate My Neighbors

I've heard a lot about it, but unfortunately have never played it. I do think that that could make a fun little DSh (to distinguish between DS the show and DS the system) game. I can see a whole line of Dark Shadows games now that I never thought possible, from action games to role-playing games to point-and-click adventure games. XP Honestly, it doesn't seem like the kind of show that would lend itself well to gaming, but once the ideas start flowing...

Though it couldn't be as epic in scope as one for the PC or consoles, I think a DS DSh game along the lines of Hotel Dusk or Trace Memory (the former of which I've completed and the latter I haven't started yet) could be good, as well.

As far as other Dark Shadows games go, I think we've covered most of the major genres: action, adventure, RPG... A Dark Shadows-themed Tetris game could be fun, but only as a free Flash game or something. I simply can't see some genres, like first-person shooters and strategy, either real-time or turn-based, fitting in, though. Well, maybe a first-person shooter, but that'd have to be an awfully linear Collinwood.

I apologize about my previous post needing modification to hide the spoiler about Gabriel and Edith. I always forget stuff like that. >_>
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Offline Brandon Collins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2008, 03:40:44 AM »
I think this is an awesome idea. I don't really play videogames very much, if at all lately, but I would definitely pick this up if it was done right.

Playing as Barnabas and Barnabas only would be interesting, but might get boring, especially in certain situations where someone else would be better suited. But truth be told, I wouldn't be happy if they went the route of "You play Barnabas when stalking a victim through the woods, but you also get to play Julia when Barnabas gets trapped in another time band, and you get to be Quentin when Count Petofi shows up to take over..." basically the whole changing characters depending on what situation you are in deal. Buffy: Chaos Bleeds is like that, where you HAVE to be a certain character depending on a level. Maybe if you could select which character you want to be before you start the level, that would be different.

I like the intial idea about you being the descendant of the Collins family, but maybe that could be twisted and supported with some of the original show ideas. For example:

You recieve a letter one day telling you that you are the last original member of the Collins family, a family you've never even heard of. You get a package with this letter that seemingly proves that all of this is true, so you set off for the small fishing village of Collinsport, Maine. When you arrive, you step off the train and head to the Collinsport Inn, where some old crazy lady, wearing a blonde wig (snigger) tells you quick wittedly that you are a jerk, J-E-R-K, jerk! if you go up to Collinwood to search for your lineage. But you decide to go anyway. Once you get up to the estate, you find it in disrepair, but being the adventerous type, you decide to create a makeshift living arrangement out of still well-standing room in the West Wing, that has a large red gramophone with flowers painted on it. You find various clues that lead you to things that help to unlock the history of your life (the Collins Family History, Julia's diary, an old menu of Mrs. Johnson's, some of Roger's business papers, etc.).

Then one night, a mysterious fire erupts from a house of cards you've built while trying to fall asleep, and your room is ruined, so you find another room in the East Wing, one with a mysterious portrait of a blonde woman hanging above the mantle.

This game would work well as a "Choose Your Destiny" type of thing. Like you could go to that room in the East Wing OR you could see the Old House from the hallway window of Collinwood, an decide to check it out, only to find the portrait of a blonde haired woman in a rust colored servants gown above the mantle.

(I wrote a lot more for both of these scenarios, but decided to cut it from this post because I thought it would be breaking the fan fiction rules for the board. If you're interested, PM me and I'll send them to you. Choose your destiny. PT room portrait, or Old House portrait?)
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Offline GooberCollins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2008, 09:14:14 PM »
I'd love to hear more. You improved upon my idea in every way imaginable.

I did hate the fact that Chaos Bleeds forced you to use only one character in any given level. It would have been nice if they had at least allowed different characters for replays, although there doesn't seem to be much point in that, since Xander and Spike seem to play just like Buffy and Faith minus the combos. Having Sid playable for such a short amount of time was a crime. I'm going off-topic here, though.

The reason I listed playing as Barnabas and Barnabas alone in my morality-themed RPG idea was because that would be huge enough. I can also see playing as Quentin and deciding what to do with the werewolf thing; whether the player would suffer to prevent killing (and eating!) innocents or gain benefits but have to kill innocent lives in the process; for example, you could slowly lose your health without having fed, or you could be all but immortal. It would also be neat to (even though this goes outside of the show) see your werewolf form change. If you play it as a restrained werewolf, you could get closer and closer to a trained pet dog, or if you played as an unhinged werewolf, your appearance could become more and more like a wolf. However, though this would add considerably more variety, it would also make the game too big, again. Other characters are an option, though some of the ones without powers would be stuck with very basic combat and conversation. Julia is the one exception; I can see her performing all kinds of weird experiments. XP Plus you could play her as the snappy original Julia or the fawning "YOU DIIID?" one of the later storylines, or, again, somewhere in the middle.
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Did a large procession wave their torches as my head fell in the basket,
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Offline victoriawinters

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2008, 06:56:44 AM »
In a Final Fantasy game, you get to play with more than one character at a time to form a team.  Part of what you do is find the team members and add them to your party.  It also allows you to switch in team members as needed.  Nice if someone has temporarily bit the dust.

Offline GooberCollins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2008, 12:07:05 PM »
Another possibility. I was basing my RPG on Western RPG philosophy (Elder Scrolls and the like) instead of Eastern RPG philopsophy (Final Fantasy and the like), but Eastern-style could work, as well.
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Did a large procession wave their torches as my head fell in the basket,
And was everybody dancing on the casket?

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Offline Brandon Collins

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Re: Virtual Collinwood: DS as a Video Game
« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2008, 07:35:17 PM »
I've never played the Final Fantasy games, but in other games where some levels have an entire team of people, it's often up to YOU, the player, and whoever you're playing, to get through the level successfully, while also keeping your entire team alive. I HATE this type of game because it often becomes difficult to navigate through any time of ambush situation without getting at least one team member killed and having to start over.

Now, if said team members were smart enough to defend themselves, and you all truly did work as a team to get through the level, that would be a different story.

Re: Sid....that truly was a crime.
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