This is a project I've been ruminating about for a really long time. TBH I don't know if I will ever be able to finish it someday, but I am willing to try hard at least, so here goes.
I was always intrigued by John Romero's first draft about what the Quake game would be about - the saga of a Thor-like character using magic weapons to bash his enemies, becoming at some point "the most dangerous person in the continent". What continent ? Atlantis ? Is this happening (or happened) in our planet or even dimension ? Mix these ideas with "Conan the Barbarian" movie (the first one with good ol'Ahnold, let's just pretend the last one never happened OK ?) and good doses of Diablo hack and slash and you got the general idea of my project: a topdown/isometric perspective Quake prequel, telling how a seemling peasant eventually became "the Quake".
The game world is meant to be procedurally generated, persistent and at least partially destructible. Likewise, mobs, NPC's, items, side quests and even substantial parts of the main quest are supposed to be randomly generated. I don't know yet if I can wrap all this working in a coherent manner, but I think the final result would be awesome and worth to try.
Right now I am working in several pieces of this puzzle. The first challenge is the world generation itself, and I already developed (and scratched) 4 variants with different degrees of success. Right now I am in the 5th iteraction, and this one seems solid and stable enough to make me confident that I am in the right direction this time. Here follows some screenshots using colored placeholders to represent different visual themes (badlands, ice covered regions, ruins, etc).
The 16 x 16 grid with using the default placeholder BSP model (ugly, I know):
And some random takes on randomly generated worlds. All cells with arrows are walkable areas, and the used algorithm ensures there are no unreachable cells from at least one of the portals (again, placeholder artwork):
This screenshot shows a generated portal to other sector and the road leading to it:
Another theme (inferno) showing two portals and the respective roads crossing:
Another interesting feature will be the AI to guide mobs and NPC's in the random mazes. The idea is to use the grid disposition of the walkable cells and apply some variation of the A* algorithm to replace Quake zigzaggy navigation. I've made tests with the concept and looks promising.
I am right now working in building placement (for castles, ruins, villages, etc), and after this I will work in some real, original artwork.