New technology is always exciting. There was an internet program a while ago that sparked some interest. A rock-paper-scissors-machine that apparently had some sort of pattern recognition software that it utilizes. I did not try it, but the concept fascinated me somewhat.
I recently thought about time travel, again. I noticed that it is quite hard to do a game where the player can go back in recent time and make it realistic in how it handles time travel (realistic time travel?). Logically, if you go back in time, you meet your past self. At this point, there is a new timeline that includes both you and the past-you. That’s the biggest problem: There are two of your characters, but only one player. A problem I shall attempt to solve.
You are an elite commando unit in the future. An evil dictator has risen and needs to bite a bullet. So you and your magic space armor are infiltrated to the dictator’s flagship to kill him. The first third of the game is your basic first/third person shooter stuff. But as you blast through, wondering what’s the twist, the game observes your playing style. Do you turn around often? How quickly do you shoot a target when it enters your vision? What weapons do you favour? The game stores this data for the next part.
Soon you get to the dictator’s command center, where he manages to surprise you and escape, leaving the ship to self-destruct. After an exciting chase sequence, you end up in a research lab, where some scientist installs new tech in your armor, for some reason. The tech is unstable, ripping a hole through space-time, sending you back in time, in a location relative to the ship. The location relativity can be explained with technobabble.
Now there are two of you running around. The other you, played by the computer, uses the pattern data from the first part of the game and attempts to play like you. If all goes according to plan, you had shot every enemy immidiately, so the AI protagonist shoots at you, provoking an angry response. Only afterwards you find out that the weird-acting enemy had been you.
The rest of the game is spent on using the time-returning to fight through the enemies and to find out how to prevent the dicatator from escaping. The AI-players, who will increase in numbers as the player jumps backwards in time, might either hinder or aid you, depending on how you keep on playing. The later iterations might stop before shooting at… themselves, and consider them as allies.
The idea will need more work, but here is the concept. Use pattern recognition and AI as the player from other timelines. Might be clever. Might not be.