‘Alice in Wonderland’ meets ‘Night of the Living Dead’
Cult Of The Abyss is a cute-horror-survival-sandbox that lands you in a broken world ruled by a dark apocalyptic cult. A whimsical journey takes place in which you play the character of a boy called “Quest” and his best friend “Dippy” – his dog. You both need to search for loot, explore and survive while you try to find a way home. You build your own hideouts, protect and defend them to not get overrun by the eerie creatures that hunt you at nighttime.
*Note: Ideas might change through development
Open World / Sandbox
Explore a vast, procedurally generated, endless terrain with different biomes and a spooky world underneath. Decide where to build and what to do – be creative! You can change the entire environment by dismantling, destroying, digging, building and repairing. It’s all up to you!
Pay attention to the time of day: at night the Cult’s ghouls form hordes and appear from subways and dungeons. They search for prey and pray to the totems.
Find an eerie world below the magical world. Roam through dark subway stations and tunnel systems. How about building an outpost there? Find loot in the bony catacombs and explore. But beware of the creepy creatures that live here!
World and Character Systems
I’m a fan of systemic design and emergent game play so would like to explore much more in this direction.
- Over time every character will develop different needs. States like hunger, thirst, stress, headache, bleeding, exhaustion, the need to take a dump, intoxication and more.
- Based on these needs and the current environment, every character gets into situations like “I’m hungry”, “enemy in range”, “companion in fight” or “blocked path” and others.
- Characters are able to plan how to solve the situation and try to execute the plan made.
- You can build relationships between characters (it’s pretty basic atm like i.e. taming)
- Ghouls search for totems they can pray to so they can elevate their mood
- At nighttime ghouls seek to come up from the underground to seek for food, during the day they want to go back down
- At “witching hour” ghouls sense exactly where you are and hunt you down
- There are fairies looking for friendly/neutral characters to heal them
- As a player you can get the stat “missing Dippy” which will drain your mood
- The Cult’s ghouls will form hordes that get bigger over time
- If you open the gateway, the Abyss will do anything to not let you go!
Companion and Character Interaction
Keep an eye out for your companion. He is depending on you and you need to take care of him. At the moment the interaction with NPCs includes feeding, cuddling, you can shoo and call them. I am planning to add more Tamagotchi-like interaction especially for relationship between player and companion „Dippy“.
Crafting / Produce
Harvest, chuck, pick and loot the items you need to craft things with and which are needed for your survival. Build “furniture” like workbench or fireplace to unlock more specific recipes.
Craft or find different types of blocks and objects to build a hideout for you and your companion to survive the night. Protect your base with spikes, magical plants and other tower defense mechanisms. Settle and rebuild a broken house in the city area.
Find all kinds of items in different spots like shelves, cupboards, cars, dead bodies and more. You should also look for magic weapons and items to cast spells with.
Biomes Plants Farming
Seed and harvest plants to eat and grow. Plants will grow over time at different speeds on different biomes.
You can build “Thaumatech”-towers to protect your base as well as spikes and traps. Thaumaturgy is the special source of magical energy in the world of Cult of the Abyss and Thaumatech is the technology that can use it. I’d like to add magical plants that help you to defend your base and protect against attacks of big hordes.
You need to find a way back home and once you do you solved the game. If your character dies you can decide if you want to re-spawn. If you do so you must find your belongings and your companion Dippy. If you are without your companion for too long your mood-level shrinks and you might fall into depression. If you or your companion die there is also a resurrection spell to call him/yourself back to life.
I have a ton of ideas I would like to trial and implement.
- I’m thinking about friendly intelligent NPCs the player can interact with. There are the so called “Loomies” which are natural inhabitants of the world but were killed by the Cult. I’m planning to create Loomie survivor characters you can encounter
- I’m also still playing with the idea of having imaginary friends that appear and help you i.e. building your base or chucking trees and defending your base
- I want to work on the city and underground-dungeon generation
- I’d like to add water-life and the possibility to go fishing
- Re-enforcing the cult aspect in the world by having specific cultist’s biomes and bases/dungeons would be great to add as well
- Cultists should have a bigger range of behavior i.e. form black masses or rituals
- Totems need a system. i.e. standing too long next to a totem will drain the player’s mood and spawn something evil or maybe reveal your position
- Poison plants or slime growing over tiles
- Improvement of the controls
And of course there are so many more enemy characters I’d like to add, more items, more biomes and building the environment in general… endless possibilities.