Take this block scenario:
Let’s say the player character is facing block 1. For the sake of example, it doesn’t matter which part of the block he’s facing. (And for the sake of argument, “he” can be of either sex)
The player activates the “dematerialise” option. The verb “dematerialise” is applied to noun “block 1”. The block can dematerialise. It will still retain a ghostly outline. The dematerialise effect can also apply to all surrounding blocks to a radius of 1 if the player gets some kind of “power-up” for example. Now, so what if block 1 is dematerialised for an energy cost of say, 50 units?
Well, it might be that the only way to access a key card would be behind this block. It might be that the block itself (a crate?) holds a keycard or other object, that is also required in the level. Perhaps the colour or the shape of the block gives some clue as to its contents. In any case, it is a requirement to dematerialise the block.
At level 1, the block might only partially dematerialise, allowing you to get what’s in it.
At level 2, the block might mostly de-materialise, allowing you to pass right through it.
At level 3, the block would mostly de-materialise and nearby blocks (in the above case, blocks 2 and 3) would become partially de-materialised. You can pass through block 1 in this case, and take objects from blocks 2 and 3.
At level 4, blocks 1, 2 and 3 mostly de-materialise, allowing you to pass right through them, but at this level, the effect is very unstable and within a certain time, say 3 to 8 seconds, the blocks will re-materialise and if you are in them, you’re history.
The other effect I was thinking about was a “re-materialise” function. You might need to grab something from an already de-materialised block, Then levitate your robot. Then walk forward one step in the air while levitated to stand on the now re-materialised block.
The game can then include interesting sequences of materialisation, de-materialisation, levitation and object use. Even a small room could provide some interesting puzzle gameplay opportunities.
Now you know what I mean by “I want to build a playroom”