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[Comments] (4) Elemental: Can't seem to get games out of my head; maybe because games are fun or something. I was thinking about how often games use the classical model of the elements as a game element. D&D is probably the first game to do this, with its elemental planes, but it also happens in Final Fantasy, ADOM, and probably about 25% of other games with fantasy settings.

Not sure how this happened; I'd blame Captain Planet, but I can't get the chronology to work out. Anyway, I'm tired of this so I was thinking of ways to improve on the concept. The obvious one is to use the modern elements, but that adds about a hundred new gameplay... elements, only a few of which are interesting. Another way is to go with the four fundamental forces. That would lead to some interesting gameplay. This is the Temple of the Strong Nuclear Force!


Posted by Nick Moffitt at Sun Oct 15 2006 14:05

Well, Brian "Danger" Hicks and I came up with an idea along these lines at Pedro Von Pedroson the Pedroth's wedding. The elements we decided on were rock, paper, and scissors.

Not exactly the Ba Gua, but it comes pre-balanced!

Posted by Leonard at Sun Oct 15 2006 22:57

Scissors, paper, and rock could stand in for one-, two-, and three-dimensional objects.

Posted by Adam P. at Mon Oct 16 2006 17:10

Skies of Arcadia has kind of an interesting elemental system. Weapons and enemies are both associated with one of six colors (you can change your weapon's color at will); some colors are strong against other colors, some are weak. A green weapon, for example, gets a damage bonus against a purple enemy, while a purple weapon does diminished damage against a blue enemy.

The colors are all nominally associated with traditional RPG "elements" (red is fire, purple is ice, etc.) but that doesn't really make it possible to figure the system out from first principles. The manual includes a chart (like this one) to help you keep everything straight. Some of the choices make sense (fire does bonus damage to ice) but others seem completely arbitrary (lightning does bonus damage to wind?).

It might be more interesting to generate the bonus grid randomly before each game, Roguelike-style. Maybe you could even randomly generate the names of the elements! (Plaid beats bubbly, DUAM XNAHT beats KIRJE, etc.)

Posted by Norman Noman at Thu Oct 19 2006 12:29

Use look around you's periodic table


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