Patrick Curry’s Thoughts on Game Design


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May 7th, 2006

Game Idea #19: Salon

One last game idea before E3 kicks off. Here we go!

High Concept:

Salon is the ultimate game of style. You play as an upscale hair-stylist who has just opened a new salon in a trendy part of town. Design unique and innovative hair styles for yourself, your clients, and your real-life friends.

Platform:

Nintendo Wii / Revolution

Why it needs to be made:

Everyone likes to look good. Styling hair is a very personal art-form, as no two people have the same face, and we all have very different hair needs. Salon is the game that lets the player help people in a freeform, creative, and low-risk environment.

Description:

The core of Salon is the game of stylizing hair. Your clients come in and describe the type of look they’re looking for: sleek, shaggy, jagged, edgy, layered, poofy, punky, or something totally off the wall. It’s now your job to create styles for them that make them look good and feel good about themselves.

You have tons of tools at your disposal: shampoos, conditioners, scissors, combs, brushes, clippers, razors, dyes, and a range of “product” to use to achieve the look you want. Using the motion-detection controllers you can precisely control where you snip, brush, and color. The best part of this of course is that you can experiment and try out different things, thanks to a handy “undo” button.

The second aspect of the game is that of building relationships with your clients, and growing your business. As word of your styling prowess spreads, more and more people will be clamoring for your services. Hire additional stylists, expand your salon, and start offering complimentary services like makeup and skin-care. The more stylists you hire, the wider-range of tools and mini-games you unlock to play with.

Finally there’s a “free-play” mode, where you can not only create any styles you want. In this mode you can import photos of yourself and your friends, map them to customizable faces, and go to town. Of course all of the hairstyles you create are saved in a virtual scrap-book, which lets you go back and revisit (or restyle) them at any time. These 3D “headshots” can be shared with friends online or attached to virtual models to try out different hair-styles with high-end fashion.

Why it will be fun:

Styling hair is doubly-rewarding. It’s rewarding for the stylist, as she gets to see her creation come to life. But it’s also rewarding for the client, who gets to feel like a million bucks after a cut. Having a client tell you how much she likes the cut, or gushing about how jealous all her friends were after the last cut would be very rewarding to the player/stylist. Salon is about cutting hair, but it’s also about building relationships with the in-game characters.

Final thoughts:

I think this game would really go over well with the women in my life. Thanks to Erin for the help on this one!


11 Responses to “Game Idea #19: Salon”

  1. Kafka commented:
    posted May 18th, 2006 at 1:54 pm

    This is a winner lol…

  2. erik commented:
    posted May 18th, 2006 at 3:09 pm

    in the same way that devilishly poking a patient with a scalpel in the wrong place in Life or Death or ignoring the mission and running amok among the populace in wGrand Theft Auto can be more fun than the originally intended game itself, Salon might have a whole aspect of gameplay hidden within the game: deliberately giving people bad haircuts (and savoring their reactions).

  3. Lily commented:
    posted July 12th, 2006 at 3:31 pm

    This sounds really cool! I think it would be good as a pc game as well.

  4. Sarah commented:
    posted July 12th, 2006 at 3:33 pm

    I found a game simular to that on a chinesse website it was a lot of fun although it didnt have the buisness aspect and you had a picture were they show what they want and you have to try and match the picture and you can only refer to it twice while cutting and dying, you can also straiten and curl the hair and stuff. It is really cool. thumbs up!

  5. Lily commented:
    posted July 12th, 2006 at 3:34 pm

    I found a game simular to that on a chinesse website it was a lot of fun although it didnt have the buisness aspect and you had a picture were they show what they want and you have to try and match the picture and you can only refer to it twice while cutting and dying, you can also straiten and curl the hair and stuff. It is really cool. thumbs up!

  6. karissa commented:
    posted September 16th, 2006 at 2:49 pm

    this is a great idea would, make millions and all the kids and grownups would buy it. what i’ve always thought about is games like that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. karissa commented:
    posted September 16th, 2006 at 2:53 pm

    my daughter is a hair dresser proffesior and she says that every college would get this on a cd-rom for hairdressing and they would add close to 1 million just out of colleges.

  8. farzana commented:
    posted November 25th, 2006 at 6:56 am

    this great idea would,make mant kids will buy it like karissa said what ive always though about this games is cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Alexis commented:
    posted March 30th, 2007 at 5:14 pm

    sounds really fun and a great interactive game. kinda like sims online, which is good! it would be cool to get upgraded styling products once u make a nice style.

  10. charlotte commented:
    posted April 11th, 2007 at 3:55 am

    i think this game would be a brilliant idia because a lot of people like going to hairdresses and you would get to make peoples hair look nice

  11. bria commented:
    posted December 31st, 2007 at 9:45 pm

    i’d buy this


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