Humanity has expanded into space and met with thousands of alien races among the myriad solar systems. Eugenics and cybernetics have become vital to the success of the human race. The only way they can hope to compete with the physical power or intellectual acuity of the alien races. Hybridization between human and other species and races also is common among the denizens of the colonized planets.
But there is a great risk to messing with the building blocks of life without fully understanding the possible consequences. Millions of creatures have been created which not even the forsaken gods would wish to bear witness to. When the creator of such an abominations realizes what he has created, he can risk trying to enslave his creation, but more often than not the monstrosity is sent to one of the abandoned worlds. Life is precious, and though eugenics is the order of the day, with the new capabilities that unravels come greater responsibilities. He who brings a being to life cannot kill it simply because it is unsatisfactory—after all, human beings would have been destroyed long ago if extraterrestrials had not had a similar law.
The player takes on the character of one of these outcast mutants right after its memory has been whiped and it has been deposited naked on a planet's surface. The world that the mutants inhabits is an ancient world where great civilizations once ruled—but now it is in complete ruins, desolated by the ravages of the exiled monstrosities. In the beginning of the game, the world is completely free and open and the player can do any crime free of the game stopping him. Players can also change the environment by digging into the ground, knocking down walls, and other actions made available by different items found in the ruins.
The primary goal for the player is survival. Permanent death is a central mechanic. Players are responsible for sustaining their character. That means characters become hungry and thirsty. They must find food to keep themselves strong and water to stay alive. Depending on the mutations the character has, they may need more or less food and water—or they may be able to consume metal, plastics, stone, dirt, or they may be able to use photosynthesis (but then they must find a light source if they’re indoors for extended periods of time). Players also need to deal with the other mutants that they encounter—this means either fighting or engaging in diplomacy.
That’s a basic outline of the idea behind a game I’d like to design. I’m going to make posts discussing the mechanics needed to make such a game possible as I think more about it. If a game similar to this has been done before, I’d love to know about it.
Interview on Turbine's MMO's and Future
2 days ago