Bleeding Edge — New Mode One-Page Pitch

Overview

Bleeding Edge is the hero-based, melee-driven multiplayer game from Ninja Theory and it’s been super fun so far. The hero mechanics are super fun and the character designs are unique and creative. However, the game mode shipped with two modes, Objective Control and Power Collection, and I believe that a third mode that focuses on nail-biting and intense moments would make a good game even better.

Bleeding Edge Modes and Overwatch

The current modes, Objective Control and Power Collection, are divided into multiple phases that turn objectives on and off all across the map. This encourages for the teams to split up and scatter across the maps to get the objectives individually. Certain phases in Objective Control will activate and deactivate points , and is usually uncertain why and which points are turning on and off, muddying the match flow. There’s usually not a strong chokepoint in the match’s flow, like Overwatch usually does.

Overwatch isn’t a 1–1 competitor, but should be reference due to both using objective-based game modes and strong hero designs as the main mechanics. Overwatch’s modes usually revolve around very strong chokepoints, whether it be a single point that both teams are vying over, or all of the level chokepoints in an Escort map. These chokepoints in Overwatch create intense back-and-forth battles, and ratchet up the intense and memorable moments of how a team defended or attacked that point.

Bleeding Edge’s mode design does work to facilitate smaller battles in teams, because the combat works really well in 1v1 or 2v2 battles, and maybe the design team doesn’t want too many full-team skirmishes. Those may get too chaotic, or become too unbalanced if any battle becomes a 2v1 fight. Therefore, I want to maintain the current design philosophy of objectives that work to scatter the teams, but also including more chokepoints to facilitate more nail-biting memorable situations. I also specifically want to use the maps that are already in Bleeding Edge, and not design a new map catered for this new mode.

My goals for this new mode are as follows:

  • design a mode that works in all of the existing maps
  • follows in the design philosophy of the other two modes and scatters the team so that smaller skirmishes and 1v1 battles can be possible
  • facilitates more exciting, nail-biting moments that adds in chokepoints in the match flow

New Mode: Bomb Attack

Bomb Attack is a new mode that has an attacking and defending team. The attacking team must capture points A and C to unlock the bomb. The team then must get the bomb, plant it at point B, and defend the point until the bomb timer runs out. The defending team must prevent the bomb from going off, either by defusing the bomb, or preventing the bomb from being planted in the first place. In this mode, we will be using the existing A, B, and C control points that are currently in the game’s maps. The game mode will have a 10 minute time limit.

an example of a map

Mode Structure

Points A and C will be activated from the beginning of the round, and must be captured by the attacking team to unlock the bomb. The defending team will be working to prevent the attacking team from capturing these points. Points A and C are captured when attacking team players stand on the point, similar to how they work now in the game. Progress cannot be removed from the point, it only increases continually. It would take approximately 20 seconds for a point to get captured from 0 to 100%. It would also get captured faster the more teammates that are on it. If an enemy player is on the point, it is contested and the point will not get any progress while contested.

Overall Match Flow

After these points are captured, the bomb will spawn on the map in a random location. There would be multiple possible locations for the bomb, and the game would randomly choose between those locations. After the attacking team picks up the bomb, they must plant the bomb on point B. Planting the bomb takes time, approximately 5 seconds of uninterrupted planting. When the bomb has been planted, a bomb timer will override the match timer. The bomb timer starts at approximately 30 seconds, and counts down to 0. When it reaches 0, the bomb explodes and the attacking team wins. If the defending team manages to defuse the bomb before it explodes, then the defending team wins.

In summary, the win conditions for the attacking team is to plant the bomb and have it explode. For the defending team, the win condition is for the bomb to not explode, either by defusing a planted bomb, or having the match timer running out.

What Does This Mode Contribute?

My goal for this mode is to meet the following criteria:

  • design a mode that works in all of the existing maps

This mode utilizes the existing placement for the A, B, and C locations in all of the current maps. It also facilitates the maps’ width by having both teams fighting over A and C at the same time, so there is a strategic decision at the spawn. Should the player go left or right to A or C? This is so players are not railroaded into a specific point for the entire match, similar to how the other two modes scatter the players across the map.

  • follows in the design philosophy of the other two modes and scatters the team so that smaller skirmishes and 1v1 battles can be possible

In the beginning of the game, the team’s will be split between points A and C. This both scatters the team so that more smaller battles can happen, but also gives a lot of room for strategy for the first half of the match. Players can split up and get A and C simultaneously at the cost of lack of team power, or get the whole team to tackle a single point, but waste time, or any variation between.

  • design a mode that facilitates more exciting, nail-biting moments that adds chokepoints in the match flow

In the second half of the game, there are two chokepoints that bring all players together to create huge tug-of-war battles. The first is picking up the bomb that spawns after A and C are captured. The second is the planting, and subsequent defense, of the bomb. This brings all the heroes from both teams to a single location, and creates those big pushes that can turn the tide of the battle with good teamwork.

The attacking team is racing against the clock, so any second that isn’t spent making progress is time wasted. This makes each objective and chokepoint more intense. After the bomb is planted, each second that passes now increases the excitement, because the timer is now working in favor of the attacking team instead of against it.

For the defending team, the stakes are raised each time the attacking team makes any progress, because the A and C points don’t lose progress, and nothing can make the bomb timer slow down or pause without outright defusing it. It also increases the pressure by forcing the defending team to go on full offense to defuse the bomb.

I think with this mode, it stays in line close enough to the existing design philosophy for game modes, but raises the stakes as the game progresses to create really exciting moments for the players. Hope you enjoyed this pitch, and I’m excited to see how Bleeding Edge evolves!

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is writing game design exercises and analyses

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Tri Nguyen

Tri Nguyen

is writing game design exercises and analyses

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