Multi-Player Mine Sweeper

Heya everyone ^_^ I'm new!

So,I'm busy making the new game: "Multi-Player Mine Sweeper", partly for this competition I'm in. It has to be completed by the end of the month (July). The game will be made for the windows phone OS.

Basically there will be different types of multi-player games, so there is no one definition of how it's gonna multi-player. So far there is :
- Time attack : players do separate identical maps, try to finish first
- Land grab : players on same large map, by the end of the game player with most "land" wins
- Casual : frieken huge map/grid where people just pop in and out helping each other to complete the map

I'm looking for new types of game types to add. Something adventurous that outright breaks the typical Minesweeper game rules. Any cool ideas you guys can think of, please post them here :) I'd even put ur name in the credits.

There will also be other features, including Tournaments and global rankings. I'm also thinking of including some kind special effects and abilities that can be bought/used using money earned by finding mines.

Thanks :)


  • Sounds cool. I imagine there is a lot that can be done with this... hmmm "abilities that can be bought/used using money earned by finding mines."

    I'll try and think of some cool things and let you know if something pops up :)
    Good luck!
  • The Land grab mode sounds neat :). I'll sleep on it, maybe I can figure out a way to make offensive play (like having the ability to place extra mines without the other player knowing).
  • in the casual/landgrab mode you could have the mines blow up and 'reset' a certain area around the mine, that way a player can make a mistake, get punished for it, and still have a chance to get back into the game. Also a nice visual way for the opponent to know that the player stuffed up!
  • First thing I'd ask is what do you gain by making Minesweeper multiplayer? What type of MP are you going for - turn based (in which case your main concern is defining decision-making information per player) or real-time (which is more about tension and forcing mistakes). There's quite a lot of space to mess around in in both of those areas, at least as far as gameplay goes.

    For examples of things that you might not have considered when it comes to Minesweeper, check out Zombie Minesweeper which has an actual point of presence that can fire shotguns, real-time tension and a neat idea of progressing along a mine-strewn path. And there's always our own @Nandrew's Onslaught of the Electic Zombies - which asks what if you could survive stepping on mines and had neat items to help you out (based on his earlier Gears Sweeper prototype).

    I kinda feel like you should be prototyping as many Minesweeper-esque gameplay ideas as possible to see what really sticks. A 2 player puzzle-fighter style mode would be pretty frigging awesome - send mines and unrevealed tiles over to the other player to try and get them to screw up ;)
  • Thank you dislekcia.
    If you mean by "gain", money, then there are two ways i'm going to gain from this game. First is the R1500 prize i'd get if I win the competition i'm entering it into (and i'm now only 1 of 3 people left in the competition), second would be a more long term income.

    I plan on, if the game becomes popular, having online tournaments (some free) that you have to pay to get into whereas people can win real money as prizes (top 3). People wont just be paying to win the prizes though, tournaments will have a totally different scene; including really cool textures and music. There would be a whole different ranking system (tennis points style) for these players. People would pay and play because it would give them something to brag about to others (and many ppl do love boasting). Tournaments would take days as there would have to be time fixtures that both opponents would have to be available at.

    If 300 players take part in a base level tournament, with a $2 entrance fee, there would effectively be $600 in the pot. Prizes would be sitting at about: 1st $200, 2nd $100, 3rd $50. Leaving $250 for me. Many players would gladly play just for prizes like that, considering the top top players wont be allowed to take part, thus making it easier for the little guys. High level tournaments would have fees ranging from $4 - $20 and would allow any players to take part. At about 5 tournaments a month, some even happening simultaneously, this could easily cover server costs.

    The game is definitely going to be real time. I'll post screen shots as soon as the first game modes are completed. I got an open source template for page navigation in XNA (which isn't easy cuz you cant just click a button and have a new screen added). Now transitions will be animated and the game mode selection much more interesting.

    I have to have some kind of working prototype completed by the end of the month, as that is when the competition due date is. I'm making much progress, so i'm sure Alpha version would be ready by then.

    I had a look at those two games you suggested, i just feel that they are abit too informal for the kind of minesweeper i'm creating. They just don't fit. Though, i really do love zombies ^_^
  • edited
    Okay, whoa there!

    I wasn't talking about financial gain, rather "what do you gain in a design sense". Minesweeper as a concept is already pretty solid - you'd have to gain a lot more player value out of it than simply adding one concept to the game.

    Dreaming about earnings and stuff like that is alluring, but it all relies on having a good game first. Simply going "I'm going to add multiplayer to Solitaire and I'll be raking in the megabucks!" because it's the most played game in the world is not going to make anything happen. Everyone that plays Solitaire seriously is already well served by countless different versions of the game. That's red-ocean competition that you do not want to jump into.

    And, given that there's a well-established and solid competitive Minesweeper scene (seriously, read up about the "dream board" saga) that plays a very particular version of Minesweeper already, I think your financial analysis is exceedingly premature... Not to mention unrealistic: Why would people pay $2 to enter a competition they only have a chance of winning in, compared to spending $1 on a game they can play forever on their phones?

    Lastly, do you have a gambling license? Because what you're talking about up there is definitely gambling. So even if you could produce a raw functionality addition to the core mechanic of Minesweeper that would somehow make people pay many times the cost of comparable games (not to mention building a very large community of those sorts of players), you still wouldn't be able to run a business like the one you've outlined above. It's illegal.

    So yeah, throw out all that monetary sparkle, it's blinding you. Focus on finding a good game that people will enjoy. That's always step 1. I mentioned those two other games, not because they both feature zombies, but because they both found ways to innovate on Minesweeper's core systems. You're going to need to find a similarly overlooked corner of Minesweeper's gameplay space in order to make a fun game.
  • Yeah, thats kinda why i posted on this site in the first place. I've got some nice ideas, but I need something more... different. I understand that chances are I'm not gonna get any money out of this thing, but it's a stepping stone. If it's anything like my last game, that got 34,000+ downloads, I'm probably just gonna pull it off the market and move on.

    I've got the LandGrab and TimeAttack modes that are quite standard ideas. The casual multiplayer game mode would be more interesting as many people would be working/competing on the same massive map. I don't think anything like that has come along yet. But yeah, I also agree that it's still missing that umf. That feature that really sets it apart from the other minesweeper games.

    Thanks for the tip on the gambling license thing, guess real money is out the question then... BTW, the game is gonna be free with no ads. I hate ads.
  • So stop inventing things to steal your attention about the game and focus on prototyping to find that core awesome idea. That's hard enough ;)

    Don't pay attention to monetisation or anything like that. How can you monetise something that doesn't exist? (When you don't have a degree in economics, that is)
  • Just the other day, i was having a look at what my competition is doing and i noticed that one of the games had a feature that, if you have found "X" amount of mines and their adjacent indicators (numbers) have the value "X" or less, then the surrounding tiles would be revealed. Just as what happens when you find a "0". The players really loved this as it greatly reduced the amount of tiles they had to click, and thus the time they spent on any particular level. I'd really love to have this feature in my game as well, not quite sure to make it optional, or even default... Any comments?

    I believe that one of the real killers of the Minesweeper games is that they take too long before anything interesting happens. If I am going to go ahead with the idea of players earning money as they go along, claiming land and finding mines, then that could be used, in conjunction with some kind of cool purchasable powers...

    @notsimon207's idea for the player to be able to place mine booby-traps is an interesting concept, but placing mines at runtime is tricky business... Perhaps something more along the lines of "airdropping" 20 mines in a linear'ish formation (with spacing) near the enemy's "front lines". That should slow them down, but could cost you as they'll now get more money by having more mines (if they don't blow themselves up ;) ).
  • @MichaelMcQuirk sounds interesting, but how is that any different than placing mines in real time?
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