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NekoKnight

Pitch a chapter idea

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Much has been discussed of mechanics and features we would like to see but how about a chapter? If you could design a chapter scenario, what would you create? I like diverse completion goals so here's a scenario I've been musing about.

Your army has been ambushed, either from the incompetence of your commander or a betrayal. The map is a vertical rectangle with more open features on the bottom half and getting more heavily forrested the further you go in. There are enemies (of reasonable strength) on three sides and you must cut through the middle to break through their ranks and escape. Behind you, a large group of strong enemies will appear after a set number of turns so you must get out as soon as you can. The chapter objective is Escape with Lord, with the note that any characters who did not escape before the chapter ends will die. The actual ending condition, however, is that all but 3 characters escape (the lord and two others). The last two characters are sacrifice themselves to let their lord escape. 

What chapter scenario would you write?

Edited by NekoKnight

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I always wanted to have a battle inside of a burning castle or something like that, probably an Escape map. Every turn, the fire would spread, which, in addition to burning your units if you stand in the flames, would damage the structure, such that rooms and paths collapse, encouraging a faster pace. Eventually, escape will be impossible. There could be NPCs to rescue or chests to open too, which you would lose out on if you took too long to travel through the map.

I also think it'd be kinda cool if you didn't meet certain requirements in a previous chapter, the castle would already be partially damaged by the fire from the beginning, making it tougher.

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Back when I was considering my Leila based hack in 2012, one of the types of maps I wanted to do was one requiring covert ops, your team was a group of thieves with differing weapons and gear (one being a staver with sleep and such). It'd play like a FoW map kind of, but you'd have to be aware of guard and where alarm stuff was, and silence them in one turn so they didn't raise the alarm with a pulley or yell. (your advanced line of sight would be almost needed as would FE10 styled torches).

Your goal would be to retrieve a chest item, and get out. That was the basic gist. I deemed it a bit too ambitious.

Although Berwick did sneaking up on enemies in the dark at least.

Edited by Jedi

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16 minutes ago, SatsumaFSoysoy said:

I always wanted to have a battle inside of a burning castle or something like that, probably an Escape map. Every turn, the fire would spread, which, in addition to burning your units if you stand in the flames, would damage the structure, such that rooms and paths collapse, encouraging a faster pace. Eventually, escape will be impossible. There could be NPCs to rescue or chests to open too, which you would lose out on if you took too long to travel through the map.

I also think it'd be kinda cool if you didn't meet certain requirements in a previous chapter, the castle would already be partially damaged by the fire from the beginning, making it tougher.

I want to see a return of the Escape objective as well. I was literally in the middle of posting the same idea, but instead of a fire, it's a single, powerful enemy that chases your units. Make it one of the primary antagonists who can't be damaged for plot reasons, that only some of your units might be able to survive a round against if they're caught. I was thinking there could be stationary armor knights with the Obstruct skill from Heroes and players would have to make room to room decisions on whether to fight them or spend their moevement traversing them as well as pillars/rubble. Offshoot rooms with chests are for sure, but the map in general would have to be a linear path to the end. Since if there were several paths to the end, then the single boss like enemy would be disadvantaged by you splitting up units.

Edited by Gustavos

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I'd love a hybrid mission. Imagine having your team holding a defensive position while one of your guys - preferably a thief - has to sneak around and find something or someone in a race against the clock.

For example, I can see the cast being surrounded by enemy forces near one of their important cities, so they send off Thief McRogueson to take an important guy hostage, sort of like how the Laguz Alliance in Radiant Dawn forces Zelgius to back by threatening a senator. 

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One chapter idea I have is making it so that the player must capture multiple bases on a single map, similar to FE4 except not as omnipresent. I think this should be reserved for a battle against the main villain or when the player is attempting to siege the capital of the opposing nation to complement the plot. This could be either required or yield some sort of reward (i.e. less reinforcements spawning, being able to control enemy ballistas to attack other bases, etc.). That being said, these bases should pose a strong initial challenge for the player and I feel they should have strong ranged weapons like ballistas, a few status stave users, and spawing reinforcements every 5 turns or so.

Edited by FoxyGrandpa

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2 hours ago, Gustavos said:

I want to see a return of the Escape objective as well. I was literally in the middle of posting the same idea, but instead of a fire, it's a single, powerful enemy that chases your units. Make it one of the primary antagonists who can't be damaged for plot reasons, that only some of your units might be able to survive a round against if they're caught. I was thinking there could be stationary armor knights with the Obstruct skill from Heroes and players would have to make room to room decisions on whether to fight them or spend their moevement traversing them as well as pillars/rubble. Offshoot rooms with chests are for sure, but the map in general would have to be a linear path to the end. Since if there were several paths to the end, then the single boss like enemy would be disadvantaged by you splitting up units.

Yikes, Knights/Generals with Wary Fighter and Obstruct would be a nightmare. Everyone is going to be equipped with a Hammer, even the archers!

2 hours ago, Thane said:

I'd love a hybrid mission. Imagine having your team holding a defensive position while one of your guys - preferably a thief - has to sneak around and find something or someone in a race against the clock.

For example, I can see the cast being surrounded by enemy forces near one of their important cities, so they send off Thief McRogueson to take an important guy hostage, sort of like how the Laguz Alliance in Radiant Dawn forces Zelgius to back by threatening a senator. 

I like the idea of defend map paired up with some other side objective. Another idea would be having half your forces defending a castle and another team being sent out to destroy the enemy food supplies so they can't continue the siege. The "defeat boss" would be another interesting element if it wasn't really practical to just route the map, necessitating a precise strike and retreat.

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Regarding an idea of my own, I'd like to see a sadistic chokepoint map. In this map, you are trying to seize a castle, however, there is a strong guard.

The map would consist of a large field, with indoor spaces at the top. There would be one gate space with a general standing on it. This general would be ~5 levels above the party. One space behind the general, there would be a 2-3 range longbow user. There would also be about 6 ballistae and 3 clerics within the castle to help the general and the bowman. This would mean anyone who attacks the general will be brutally murdered, and the general will then heal and laugh in your face. Basically the enemy uses your broken tactics against you.

There would be three ways to beat this chapter without losing all your units: 1) Use a thief with a pass skill to assassinate the bowman, the clerics and the ballistae, before attacking the general with mages and hammers. 2) Use a low-constitution mage to deal chip damage to the general, before rescuing them with a flier, dancing for said flier, and GTFO before the enemy phase. 3) Attack with a high-speed unit after rallying their strength through the roof, and watch all the arrows miss you.

Once the general is defeated, the chapter becomes piss easy, as a reward for clearing the challenge, as you get to watch the enemy's cruel plan fall apart effortlessly.

 

Another chapter idea, which also revolves around the enemy using your tactics against you, is to have a castle level containing clerics who have staff savant and a revival staff. This means the enemy is on phoenix mode! You have to either beat all the clerics (easier said than done, as they can revive each-other and are all over the map) to stop the reinforcements or rush to the boss, and ignore the constant zombies... Or you could endlessly grind EXP if you don't care about turn count, that works as well!

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One idea I thought of was a chapter that's either divided into four parts or is absolutely huge (probably divided into four parts, or maybe just two). Anyway, storywise, the hero's forces are laying siege to a castle at a significant point in the story. The hero does not have enough soldiers, supplies, or time to simply sit outside and starve the forces defending the castle. So thy must lay siege to it.

The first part takes place outside the main walls, and the units must find a way past the gatehouse. The gate is reinforced by a portcullis, so if one tried to simply attack the gate, it would only deal 1 damage, when the gate has a significant amount of HP. One way would be to have four units at the battering ram, and each turn the battering ram would then deal significant damage to the gate, but those four units can be attacked by the archers, mages, etc., that are on the castle wall or inside the gatehouse. Another method would be to scale the castle walls to the sides of the gatehouse, enter it that way, and open the gate. A flying unit can easily fly to the top of the wall, but there are plenty of archers and they cannot enter the doors to the gatehouse. An infantry unit can carry a ladder to the wall and climb the ladder. But the enemies defending the wall can knock the ladder down if they deal enough damage to it. Thankfully, units can operate ballistae and catapults on the ground to damage enemies on the wall (but the enemies can hide behind parts of the wall to defend themselves). Once inside the second floor of the gatehouse, a unit can open the gate. But there is a small group of elite units in the first floor of the gatehouse as well as a small group of archers and mages. One must get past them to proceed.

The second part is a battle inside the main courtyard. There are buildings, defendable positions, etc.

The third part takes place just outside the main keep, and you must get inside, though your army had to leave the battering ram behind for obvious reasons and there are only one or two spots where someone can attempt to use a siege ladder. There is a back door behind the keep, but getting to it will be almost impossible due to all the units inside. Again, behind the gate, there is an elite unit (just one this time).

The fourth and final part takes place inside the keep. This part is inside, but has multiple floors, and one must keep track of their units on each floor and on the stairs. The boss is at the top floor of the castle interior and is surrounded by healers and archers.

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Okay, so, there's a chapter set in a castle around early-mid-game where the boss at the end is the main villain's strongest enforcer, facing you on-foot despite normally riding a flying mount. He's pretty powerful, but it's clear he's holding back. After you defeat him, the game forces you into the next chapter, which starts out as seemingly a south-to-north "escape" path through a bunch of enemies. After a couple of turns, though, the boss from the last chapter shows up at the north end, possessing endgame stats WAY out of your current league. And he's now riding his mount, so he's got high Mov and flight. If you just try to just slowly advance your way through the enemies like normal, he'll easily catch up and start swatting your troops like flies. So instead, as you fight, you have to also take advantage of terrain to do things like knock down pillars, lower portcullises, or otherwise create obstacles behind you to keep him from catching up.

Not only would it be a fun objective that takes advantage of map features, but when you have your rematch with him near the end of the game you'd finally be able to fight him on equal footing and it'd be so satisfying.

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I'd like to see some more two-or-more part maps. The main one I can think of is the chapter from Awakening when you fight against Validar at the Dragon's Table. Beat him once, and more story stuff happens, then he reappears and is tougher.

 

So, I'd like a LoTR Helm's Deep type defense map. I might add more LoTR based maps later... :)

Stage 1 - Defense: You and your army are behind heavily fortified walls, one doorway/ choakpoint for enemies to pass through, ballistae/turrets along the wall for added support. Huge number of enemies outside the fort walls, reinforcements come often. But due to the defenses they are easy to manage. Lasts a certain amount of turns.

Stage 2 - Breached! Retreat!: The wall falls apart creating many openings for the enemies to come through. Stronger enemies appear. The main doorway opens wider, or is destroyed. Your army has to retreat back to a certain area. Should be tricky, but not hard.

Stage 3 - Last Stand: Your army then gets a boost in stats (moral boost or something). The goal is to push your way through and rout the enemy. Boss appears, enemy reinforcements stop. Allied reinforcements appear after a turn count or once player reaches a certain area. Allies are either controlled, or NPC's. With their help, finishing the battle is quick.

 

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I posted this in a different topic before. Ignore it if it starts sounding familiar. Note the names are intentionally generic.

Spoiler

In the storyline, this chapter would be early-mid in placement, it wouldn't make sense thematically late in a plot.

Heroic Army is passing through a mountain pass controlled by Bandits, possibly with help from Evil Empire. The slope up the pass to the Fort which commands it is heavily defended, if Lord attempts to take the Fort as is, it will involve massive casualties.

Fortunately Flying Mercenaries are coincidentally passing by. Flying Mercenaries want to get through the pass and are willing to help Heroic Army. 

The Fort rests on a cliff next to the ocean, and its seaward side lacks a tall wall- why the Fort has no roof even. Nor, are there ballista or any defenses set up along the seaward side. There is no fear of aerial attack.

With this knowledge in mind, Heroic Army, led by Lord, decides it will distract Bandits by slowly trudging towards the Fort. Flying Mercenaries will strike from the seaward side, throwing the enemy in disarray and disabling the ballistae and other defenses directed towards the Heroic Army. As a plus, Flying Mercenaries, controllable by the player, will offer to ferry a few of the Heroic Army's named playable units into the Fort. Once the Flying Mercenaries have completed their job, rush up the slope with the Heroic Army and together wipe out the Bandits. Also, when you've eliminated the defenses, the Flying Mercenaries turn into Yellow Allied Units. To prevent you from keeping the Flying Mercenaries as playable units for the whole of the battle, if you don't eliminate certain defense targets, the it will be impossible to enter the final part of the map and thus complete it. Said targets will cause the blue to yellow unit switch (save for those ferrying your units).

If all goes well and certain conditions are met, a Flying Mercenary member will even permanently join you.

If I wanted to make things a little more complicated. Have the Evil Empire field a few of its own fliers to delay the Flying Mercenaries, and make it so that those Mercenaries ferrying your units suffer stat losses. Meaning you have to have the unburdened Flying Mercenaries defend the burdened ones from the Evil Empire fliers.

 

And how about a map that starts as a timed seize, but that then turns into a defend? I was thinking something like this:

While the enemy's main army is distracted by allied forces some far distance away (not on the actual map), your military unit sneaks into a port city. Your job is to capture the docks before the enemy ships set sail with valuable materials or personnel. After you complete this task, word comes that the enemy has taken notice of you and has had some troops withdraw from the main battle to stop you. If the enemy manages to seize the docks again, they'll set sail and your forces will be crushed. Hold onto the docks until your allies hopefully manage to arrive and flank the foe now pushing on you. To complicate things, make it so there are things you can do to get to the docks sooner, but which will be left as such when the enemy arrives. Meaning if you destroy a wall to get to the docks quicker during the seize portion, the enemy reinforcements for the defend part, who will at least in part appear in the area where you started, will be able to take advantage of the destroyed wall to get to you sooner, making your defense more difficult.

Edited by Interdimensional Observer

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4 hours ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

With this knowledge in mind, Heroic Army, led by Lord, decides it will distract Bandits by slowly trudging towards the Fort. Flying Mercenaries will strike from the seaward side, throwing the enemy in disarray and disabling the ballistae and other defenses directed towards the Heroic Army. As a plus, Flying Mercenaries, controllable by the player, will offer to ferry a few of the Heroic Army's named playable units into the Fort. Once the Flying Mercenaries have completed their job, rush up the slope with the Heroic Army and together wipe out the Bandits. Also, when you've eliminated the defenses, the Flying Mercenaries turn into Yellow Allied Units. To prevent you from keeping the Flying Mercenaries as playable units for the whole of the battle, if you don't eliminate certain defense targets, the it will be impossible to enter the final part of the map and thus complete it. Said targets will cause the blue to yellow unit switch (save for those ferrying your units).

I could imagine such a map where you are given a very small group of soldiers (maybe 5?) to infiltrate a fort and kill the soldiers around the gate and nearby walls. The first part of the map could be a stealthy-like level where you need to avoid groups of soldiers carrying torches. After the gates are opened, it would be a straight Route map, albeit fighting within a building.

4 hours ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

While the enemy's main army is distracted by allied forces some far distance away (not on the actual map), your military unit sneaks into a port city. Your job is to capture the docks before the enemy ships set sail with valuable materials or personnel. After you complete this task, word comes that the enemy has taken notice of you and has had some troops withdraw from the main battle to stop you. If the enemy manages to seize the docks again, they'll set sail and your forces will be crushed. Hold onto the docks until your allies hopefully manage to arrive and flank the foe now pushing on you. To complicate things, make it so there are things you can do to get to the docks sooner, but which will be left as such when the enemy arrives. Meaning if you destroy a wall to get to the docks quicker during the seize portion, the enemy reinforcements for the defend part, who will at least in part appear in the area where you started, will be able to take advantage of the destroyed wall to get to you sooner, making your defense more difficult.

This is another cool idea. I like the idea of choosing to destroy defenses to make the initial siege easier or letting them stay to make your own defense stronger.

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I think in general having some variety with different objectives and methods of completing a map affecting future battles and dialogue would make the game a lot more interesting and offer some great replayability. That's definitely something I want to see in the next Fire Emblem game.

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1: escape map with an equally matched north army and south army- player army must avoid both of them. After 'winning" the game gives takes all their own units off the map and gives them control of south army, game will continue with regular army next chapter regardless of south or north winning, the "border" but it should affect the story  or be a route branch of some kind.

2: A "shipping lane" level, with an initially weak boss who is being brought speedwings/ energy drops from other enemy units who trade them into him for him too consume-  The items won't be designated drops - because player imbalance obv. Map will have nice dynamic of a boss who gets stronger if you stall too much- And having to focus on intercepting enemies in addition to pushing the fort/whatever to get to the item eating boss.

3: A map with a constantly attacking boss with enough def/res to only take 5 dmg per turn. However, his weapons only have 3 durability. The entire rest of the map is made up of spaced out (immobile)bishops who carry rescue staves, and backup copies up copies of his equipment (no healing). The idea would be that they would rescue him and then trade him their stuff, and then the player would have to Scramble to get one of the ONLY characters in their army able to tank him into position. It's not really that interesting gameplay-wise, but more from an AI- design standpoint of getting the AI to calculate the units it can attack with possible rescue assistance factored in / getting the guys to trade the thing. Optimally the boss should be able to use both physical/magical weapons so you have to check which bishop he resupplied with when trying to tank him-

gimmick boss idea.jpg

Edited by Reality

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A battle with multiple enemy armies. Okay, we've had these before, but I want one where the enemy armies are fighting each other as well as you. If you give some of the enemies good items or have recruitable units, it would make approaching the map interesting, as you'd have to get to the character before the enemy kills them but also making sure you don't get surrounded. In addition, such a map could have a large number of enemy units without being unbearably tedious.

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I've always wanted a map where you are attacking a large city, with characters allowed to go inside houses for skirmishes and streets and side alleys to navigate through to get to the main castle.

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Thought of one where you must fight the enemy army while also dealing with villagers that have sided with the enemy army due to either being citizens of its country or some other reason. My idea would be either that they always do an annoying, yet insignificant, amount of damage and you can't attack them, or you can attack them, but you get a really good reward for doing so. I know it would be a little weird for a village to have people who want to help the army that aren't IN the army, but there can always be some line about the people needing to stay home to keep their crops growing or something like that.

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Something like FE5's chapter 14(I'm going to rave about this chapter until the end of time).

A MASSIVE city siege Defend map, with multiple boss units on the map. You and your tiny army have to fend off this never ending onslaught of enemies, as they bring in ballista and try to break your defense from afar. On top of this, there are houses in the outskirts, that have some pretty nice rewards, should you be ballsy enough to jump right into the enemy's main force.

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So I really like the idea of split armies coming together (like Sacred Stones and Gaiden). 

Here's the idea: one army's final chapter before the forces come together is a defense chapter where they have to prevent the enemy from seizing a castle. Throughout this time, access to the usual supply/convoy is cut off so they have to make due with what equipment they have on them (you'd get a FE7 style battle preparations chapter before this to organize).

After that defense chapter, there would be a cutscene showing the army's exhaustion and how their resources are drainging as well as the arrival of friendly reinforcements - at which point you'd resume control of the other army who is hearing word from a messenger that Army A needs help and is at such and such location with the implication that the battle is still going on. 

There would be some dialogue and Army B would get moving, with a fade-to-black occurring and leading you to where you left off during the defense chapter - same unit positions for Army A and equipment, everything exactly as you left it when you were defending the gates. From there you proceed to take the enemies on from both sides and turn the mission from a defense/survive map to a rout, kill boss, etc map. 

I'm probably not being super eloquent in my phrasing but hopefully you can get the gist of it!

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I’ve had an idea that’s been polished up a bit but still pretty open all things considered.

The map is a village/city that’s been under siege; the capital of the Lord’s land. following an earlier assault on their castle, the entire city is being evacuated. your objective is to make sure that the villagers/non-combatants are safely evacuated before your army needs to leave. On their own the villagers can and will move in a manner that ensures they won’t be attacked within two turns. However, there’s a way to speed up their escape by having your units pair up with the villager, allowing you to directly move them with the expanded reach, but at the cost of your unit’s combat ability. the map will end after a certain number of turns following the evacuation of the last villager, and any units that are A; alone, or B; trapped behind an enemy, are captured and taken out of the party. However, units that are at the gates, or are within movement distance of an ally unit, will escape to safety.

Additional challenges will include strong knights/generals that slowly close in from the direction of the castle, ranged units that slowly make their way across the upper ramparts and start taking shots from afar, and general environmental damages like fires collapsing buildings, pathways being blocked or cleared, and a damn bursting and flooding a portion of the city. Of course there’d be looters trying to take any treasure they could find, giving incentive to decide if the reward is worth the risk.

 

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Something interesting I'd like to see is the events in one chapter effecting the events in the following chapter.

An example back on Reddit a few months ago was a desert defend chapter where the better you do during the chapter the layout of the map in the following chapter will change. This could effect things like the difficulty of the map, what rewards you could get etc.

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8 hours ago, Maronmario said:

Something interesting I'd like to see is the events in one chapter effecting the events in the following chapter.

An example back on Reddit a few months ago was a desert defend chapter where the better you do during the chapter the layout of the map in the following chapter will change. This could effect things like the difficulty of the map, what rewards you could get etc.

That is how I thought Fates would be like, more of a "choose your own adventure" style. Where each decision you make effects the rest of the story.

Another idea to add to this is in one chapter, you can recruit or kill an enemy (Like Tharja in Awakening). Then in a later chapter you encounter that character's family, home army, or something related to that character. Then if you killed that character, that army would attack you. If you recruited the character, they they become your allies or give you some items as friends.

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2 hours ago, Lord_Grima said:

That is how I thought Fates would be like, more of a "choose your own adventure" style. Where each decision you make effects the rest of the story.

Another idea to add to this is in one chapter, you can recruit or kill an enemy (Like Tharja in Awakening). Then in a later chapter you encounter that character's family, home army, or something related to that character. Then if you killed that character, that army would attack you. If you recruited the character, they they become your allies or give you some items as friends.

That would have been a really cool idea to have seen in the series. I'm honestly surprised they haven't done that yet.

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Well, I have a thought on a sort of starting chapter. It would be based on something like

FE4 spoiler

You are one of the victims of child hunting. It's later in your life, and basically being put through a gauntlet of human experimenting to see where your strengths lie (or that you have any). Pitted against others like you, and tormenting illusions. Have options like just fighting, or studying the nature of these things, or your opponent. Does both set up your boon and bane, focus you on if you're magic or physical focused, agile, etc, along with giving you a feel of the setting you're in.

People often ignore the importance of the start. 

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