Villain vs. Omniscient Player

Villain vs. Omniscient Player

I may have a unique opportunity in storytelling within the realm of time travel.

Many games and movies exist in which characters are aware of the possibility or mechanic of time travel. Some even make references breaking the 4th wall in awareness of the players non-understandable abilities.

But what if a villain not only gets it, but specifically wanted to craft a plan to try to force the player to use this time travel loading ability for his own gain.

This could work by the villain having in game world resources to detect and monitor the uniqueness of the player and devise series of plans to manipulate and control the player. The example being killing your companion or girlfriend which would incentivize the player to go back and use mechanics to prevent it.

Now we can give the villain a trick to use strange words and test to see whether the player reacts.

Now you might say that since the game world has no existing actors besides the player that everything would be the same every time and so the villain would always do the same thing. However the villain could reasonably deduce that, if put forth as an incredibly intelligent person.

By that discovery the villain could also simulate randomness outside of the game world by monitoring the players decision making across the game and driving their set of evil plans based on those choices because they represent randomness.

In fact if the villain was especially dedicated they could basically do what encryption is and with enough randomness simulated by player injected choices it would be impossible to figure out the villains formula.

Now the villains systems for writing out all his possible plans and wiring enough of them to be executed or decoded would be exposed. Especially to a time traveling player looking to Snoop.

Probably the clear defense against this is for the villain to realize his system planning and decoding would be pursued by the player and plant massive amounts of false leads and false information through other people crossing over this faulty information.

Via this system as long as the villain is aware of the player being aware of time travel/the villains plan, the player can never fully avoid or outdo the villain in terms of in game consequences maliciously inflicted.

However it may be then possible to pick up clues about the problem to solve not being the systems, but actually the villains awareness of the players awareness of the plans the villain has.

Theoretically the player would then play a fresh new game without the + and use that incredible knowledge gained to avoid the first loop evil plan.

And so the lesson is taught to the gamer by the game that they should not act by the arbitrary rules of the world of the game, but by the full extent of their power as a true agent.

This is represented in the difference between using the in game technology to rewind current memories to old and using the start new game button from the launcher manually.

And I would never do this from a self righteous finger wagging villain. Or at least through player dialog options I would make the counter argument that games are still incredibly valuable, but we should be aware of the temptation to apply constraints of video games to ourselves that don’t need to apply outside of games.

Part of me does worry someone could do a good job of stealing this idea, but hopefully I’m the only one with the interest and capacity to go this meta.

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