CoDependence day is a two player couch co-op survival game where you have to survive everyday life as two roommates. This includes handling your personal needs while making enough money to pay the rent and to stay happy together.
With CoDependence Day, our main goal was to convey the joy and frustration of living together with another person.
To convey this through the game, we decided to give each player their own personal needs they have to take care of on their own while also providing an obstacle that requires both players to work together (paying the rent).These mechanics combined aim to create natural conflict and cooperation between the players.
Working for money
We wanted players to be able to interact with a variety of things in the game with different results and therefore we needed a system to easily create new interactable items (interactables) with different functionality.
An interactable can either be instantly activated or require the player to interact with them for a certain amount of time. When the player has interacted with it, it can also become active for a time before finishing the interaction.
For interactables there are some base classes that can be used to get some basic functionality, for example deciding which particles or sounds should be played when the object is being interacted with.
Interactable editor example
In the game, the players have three personal needs they need to satisfy; hunger, bladder and hygiene. These needs tick down at a steady rate and have special effects that happen when they get close to and/or reach the bottom.
Actions that the players perform directly affect these needs in different ways, either increasing or decreasing the rate they change at, or making them immediately lose or gain a chunk of it.
Player needs ticking down
Slipping in pee & getting dirty
As these needs are personal, it means that each player will sometimes have to prioritize themselves, perhaps spending the last of the money on food, eating the last of it or hogging the bathroom.
Meanwhile they have to work together in order to earn enough money to pay the rent and stay happy together, encouraging them to communicate to survive.