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My goal is to create a game that is sort of a combination between Dungeons & Dragons and Pokémon GO.

The main goal of the game will be to have the players move through my city, in real life, and complete quests at several locations, making their characters stronger by interacting with other people in different places in the real world.

Like in D&D, players will create characters with a backstory. They can then create a party or venture out by themselves. Character creation will happen at the guild house, a local games story, where a GM will be present. The GM will then sent the players out on quests to other locations, another GM will be at each location to assist the players and make sure everything happens in an ethical manner.

An example quest would be to slay a dragon somewhere in the city. That dragon could be located at a nearby bar, where another GM would be ready to make the players fight the dragon. Obviously I'd get permission from the bar owner first.

Another important aspect of the game is to have several guild houses at different locations in the city, these guilds would oppose and fight each other for ... something ... Maybe eventually with the goal to open my own bar as a guild house.

What I'm struggling with most at the moment is finding a good reason to sent players out into the city to different locations.

In Pokémon GO it makes sense, you walk around trying to find Pokémon on your phone.

But for this there seems to be no real reason to send the players out. Why not just have the 2nd GM at the next table to fight the dragon instead?

So I'm looking for a good reason to have the players move throughout the city.

I want this because it's what I loved about Pokémon GO, going to different locations and interacting and meeting different people. It just doesn't really make much sense with my concept so far. Sure I could just say that's the way it is, but I'd rather find a strong motivation for it.

Maybe it could be as simple as having to pick up a physical item, even if just a piece of paper, at the location and bring it back?

Eventually I would like to create a complete digital platform for this, that can automatically assign/complete quests at different locations. For now I'm going to use GMs at different locations.

Obviously it's going to take some time to build up this concept, recruit players and GM's, ...

Would love to hear some thoughts and ideas.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Pokemon GO really depends on using an app with map APIs to query information about a location and nearby sites of interest. This data is what allows the game to generate reasons to go to other places physically. If you want water pokemon you have to go to places with water. Gyms tend to be located at monuments and parks. Spawning pokemon is kind of like a procedurally generated quest system that takes location data as a seed. \$\endgroup\$
    – Romen
    Jun 15 at 15:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ I think it would be exciting if the levels of the enemies increases the further you have walked. Perhaps you find rarer loot as well. Possibly just the more steps you take, with a reset or reduction each time you die or month or something. I think pokémon go was pretty boring in that outside major cities pretty much nothing happened. But if it is just the number of steps this matter less. Maybe you could get more high quality steps in some places or something I dunno. Imagine a random encounter with a dragon at low level because you had walked a lot recently. that would be exciting. \$\endgroup\$
    – Emil
    Jun 20 at 15:47

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Pokemon Go! and its technological predecessor Ingress are played by many people because they gamify exploration of the real world. They give the player an excuse to go to places they never been to before.

You could market your game as an opportunity like that. Just instead of exploring generic landmarks, it could be a guide for the RPG culture of your city. By bringing people to hobby stores, rpg-friendly bars, RPG groups at community centers and other cool venues the beginner role-playing enthusiast never realized exist in their city.

In that way it would benefit both the players as well as the businesses which participate in the game.

How would this be justified in-universe? Well, if a quest giver in an RPG world tells you to slay a dragon, that dragon won't be sitting at the table next to them. It will be in its lair, which will require some traveling to get to. Having the player travel when their character has to travel can be easily sold as a feature increasing immersion. So it makes sense that the "dragon's lair" is represented by the bar at the other side of town.

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You could draw inspiration from various FPS game modes.

Capture the Flag could be great fun in a Pokemon Go format... every Clan has a flag, and it's usually at their Clan base. But someone could try to steal it, by battling people near the Clan House and then if they defeat several of them... they capture the flag.

Another option is to more directly draw inspiration from Pokemon Go and create collectibles that you win in combat with NPCs. They wouldn't have to be monster collectibles - they could also be weapon, armor and spell collectibles. You could win them in combat, or embark upon more elaborate quests to earn them.

If you want to meet people in person, it'd probably be best to have a specific day where people can play the game. Make it a big deal, and promote it through social media channels and local D&D groups. That way you're more likely to get a critical mass going...

Sounds like a fun project. Good luck!!

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