Did you ever found yourself in a situation, where there is a person between you and your senpai? Very irritating person who is somewhat really popular, so that there is a flock of shy guys following her around, preventing you from having a... very serious private conversation?
Our gracious YandereDev said, that murdering rivals is going to be tricky because there will be 'biological security cameras' following her around, making that task harder. For now we have four ways of dealing with that problem:
Studying rivals routine in hope to spot a moment when nobody sees her, and then hope that it will repeat the next day. Risky - what if there is no such window? You just wasted whole day!
Invest study points and just tell her followers to go away. Cool, but what if you want to invest those points elsewhere.
Spend time befriending guys who are an obstacle. You need to spend time stalking your rival to know who that is. Then, when the faithful time comes, tell them to go away. Wait, why didn't you just invest points in "being able to command people" skill?
Like above, but switch friendship for murder. Lowered school atmosphere is your penalty.
Oh, there is also a fifth way - befriend rival, and lure them somewhere with no witnesses. But befriending the rival basicly eliminates them, so I didn't count that method.
4 ways seems plenty, but you see, there is way more ways to kill our rival than 4. It means that a player with some bloodlust needs to repeat at least a few of them. Due to existing game mechanics, and human tendency to do things in the most efficient, but not fun way, they're probably going to stick with most efficient option - number 2. If they've invested the points, why try something else?
Wouldn't that get somewhat dull after a while...?
Let's consider another way of removing our rival from unwanted sight. Of course, feature creep is something YandereDev should avoid, but it is still fun to speculate.
So, there may be various reasons why people follow our rival. Maybe they have a crush on them. Or maybe they like the way they walk. But most of them probably do that because rival are popular in some way. So, how giving them another idol to follow?
Just lowering rivals reputation won't cut it. Besides, it is another elimination method.
We need three things for this feature.
1 - AI for followers
While rival followers can be scripted, ones following the new idol can't. After all, player can choose any student to be a new idol!
Making of this AI is going to be quite complex, but YandereDev has to do it anyway. A penalty for player having high reputation are admirers following them around. It is not going to be hard to use their AI following completely unpredictable player movements to follow the new idol.
2 - A way to increase somebody's reputation
In other way - anti-gossip. Maybe when giving compliments you can choose whom to compliment. If you compliment the somebody else, their reputation will rise! YandereDev can easily control how hard is to make somebody popular - by changing the amount of reputation points given.
Once again - it is possible to use existing mechanics of gossiping and compliments.
It is even possible to add a new favour to purchase from Info-Chan. One that boosts reputation, instead of damaging it.
3 - Some kind of tag for the "most popular person" and balance
Yes, the game needs a way of telling if somebody is popular person that attracts rivals followers or not. I think a simple binary tag is going to work just fine (Just a small reminder: don't use busy waiting to check to check whom to follow).
Let's say that above a certain level of reputation student becomes popular, and most usual rivals followers turn to them. In order to pretend players from creating "follower sponge" at the beginning of the game, and letting them suck up followers even in later stages of the game, let's make that popularity short-lived. The longer the student is popular, the faster their reputation drops. If it drops to the normal level, they stop being popular and the drop stops. That way after just a few days new followers forgot about the popular student, and things return to normal.
Okay, maybe you are still asking a question:
But why add it to the game?
Well, it provides another way of solving a problem of witnesses. It is in a way more risky (player doesn't know which followers are going to flock to new popular student) and safe (There is no rival followers returning when player cleans up. After all, players "please go away" works only for so long). More options makes the game feel more organic, especially if they're using existing game mechanics.
Besides, I don't think it is going to be very hard to add this feature. Most of the things needed for this feature either already exist, or need to be made anyway.
So, what do you think? Is this idea good? Bad? Boring?