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Game elements that allows for faster movement, or different types of movement, than that normally available.

Game worlds can be difficult to move through, either because the terrain is hazardous, one cannot traverse it because one does not have the right abilities, or simply because they are very large. To solve one or all of these issues games can, like in the real world, offer Vehicles as a solution.

Note: this pattern describes diegetic vehicles that can be entered or mounted to ease travel. Those vehicles that players control directly are in fact either Avatars or Units.


In the Grand Theft Auto series much of the gameplay revolves around using Vehicles that have been obtained by illegal means to solve various challenges.

The Battlefield series lets players access a variety of military vehicles to gain air power, water maneuverability, increased fire power, as well as protection from small arms. Many of the Vehicles can in addition carry extra players than can either be gunners or simply passangers.

While its predecessor Morrowing allowed various forms of instantaneous travel between parts of the game world (including riding giant insects), Oblivion lets players ride horses between the various adventure locations.

Players of Minecraft that wish to simplify travel can build boats or lay railroads after having crafted the necessary game elements.

Using the pattern

Non-Renewable Resources


Dexterity-Based Actions

Real-Time Games

Game Worlds

Spawn Points Privileged Movement Installations

Game Mastery

Varied Gameplay


Inaccessible Areas

Like many game elements, Vehicles can be Destructables. For these it can however be appropriate to allow the destruction occur due to reckless driving, and in any case link the destruction of the Vehicles to loss of Lives if these are used in the games.

Diegetic Aspects

This pattern describes all game elements that can provide transportation for Avatars and Units, so diegetically the Vehicles do not have to be device but can be living creatures such as horses, elephants, and magical birds.

Interface Aspects

In Real-Time Games it may not be easy to map the normal interface players use for Maneuvering to that use for the available Vehicles, e.g. the movement of a human translates bad to that of a helicopter. To solve this games may need to provide different control sets for each types of vehicles depending on their form of locomotion, and Option Interfaces for each of them so players can customize them.


Vehicles modify how players can perform Movement, and Maneuvering for Real-Times Games, in Game Worlds.

When they provide ways of travelling through otherwise impossible mediums, e.g. air or water, they give players a form of Privileged Movement that can open up Inaccessible Areas - but if Vehicles allowing this are to easy to access the areas stop being treated as Inaccessible Areas and only ones cumbersome to enter.


Can Instantiate

Privileged Movement

Can Modulate

Game Worlds, Lives, Maneuvering, Movement

with Privileged Movement

Inaccessible Areas

Can Be Instantiated By


Can Be Modulated By

Destructables, Option Interfaces

Possible Closure Effects


Potentially Conflicting With

Inaccessible Areas


New pattern created in this wiki.