With the research that I have done I believe that the type of game that Mayan Twins should be is a 3rd person action adventure game. This would be similar to the style of games that I researched into earlier: Heavenly Sword and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. I feel that due to the nature of the twin's story the game will have at least a 15 rating due to beheadings of characters and sacrifices. And in terms of design I feel more research is needed to be done to begin to understand how this game would look so that the design elements can be obtained from research within Mayan culture to make the game become more authentic.
The story of the game will begin much like Heavenly Sword, the twins know that their fate is doomed and the player will play out the final moments of the twins lives. The game will then cut to the beginning with the twins back at their grandmother's garden where they used their special abilities to make their garden chores much easier for themselves. Every day however the twins work would be in vain as the animals would undo everything and so in seeking revenge the boys aimed to capture the animals. The twins were able to capture a rat and singe his tail, the rat in an act of mercy revealed that their talents were wasted and that they were destined to be great ball players like their father and uncle. However the equipment their father used was hidden from them by their grandmother so through the use of their trickery the twins claimed it back. They began to play ball in the same court as their father which much like their father had disturbed the Lords of Xibalba, rulers of the Maya Underworld. The twins would set off to confront the Lords who after a game of Pok-ta-Pok (Mayan Ball Game) were sent on several tests. After each test the boys are asked to play a ball game with their aim being to lose to be sent on to the next test. After the twins complete the final test they head off to the final battle to act out the revenge of the killing of their fathers.
I think in an attempt to make this story link in with being a video game the twins need to be in some form 'level up', gaining new abilities along their journey. The game will feature co-operative play between two players where the players will have to work together to solve puzzles. Such as one player having to turn a crank while another has to protect the other, or through synchronisation players have to press a series of buttons to pass a door. In terms of combat the players can work together to perform special moves, in terms of types of attacks and weapons that the twins would use I think will have to be based around the equipment used in the ball game. The unfortunate thing about this ball game is that not very much is known and what is known about the sport is heavily contested. What I have discovered is that the equipment used in the ball game tended to include '...stone yokes or belts, hand-stones, padlock stones, leather gloves, knee pads, chin pieces, half-masks and headgear.' (Blanchard, 1995) Also from reading the story of the twins in one of the ball games one of the twins - Hunahpu - uses a racquet in one of the ball games which I think opens a door to decide what type of attributes that the two characters will have.
I think Hunahpu's racquet can be turned into some form of weapon allowing the playing to use speed and ranged attacks however this character will be less powerful. So with Xbalanque I feel that with the types of equipment listed that he should be more of an up-close-and-personal character relying on brute strength to combat enemies while being less hasteful. This in turn could produce some characteristics of the characters with the fighter being slower in thinking and the ranged twin could be more intelligent. The game being co-operative opens up the chance for co-operative attacks with the characters so for example after the players defeat a certain amount of enemies each it fills up an attack bar. When this has filled then the twins can combine to perform a devastating attack which will merge the power of speed, range and strength all in one to defeat large number of overwhelming enemies.
Another feature I thought of to include was that when the twins had defeated the different tests they would gain a new ability in their combinations to become more powerful and use against enemies. For example after the twins defeat the fire house the gods would grant them the ability to enhance their attacks with fire which in turn could effect their appearance. This effect would probably come in the form of the Mayan symbol of that animal/element becoming part of their body art and in turn these attacks could help to solve puzzles in other tests for the story to advance.
Blanchard, Kendall. The Anthropology of Sport: An Introduction, 1995 p.106 accessed on 28/09/2012