You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain.

Two-Face in Batman. The Incredible Hulk. Jekyll and Hyde. Green Goblin.

I'm looking to build a game revolving around a theme where the characters' main focus is to avoid turning into the villain. The heroism bit like fighting villains and rescuing the world would act as background tasks. Most of the player focus, character builds, resource management, and plot would revolve around keeping the character from sliding into villany.

Lovecraftian themed games somewhat fit - the concept that having more knowledge/power increases the likelihood of crippling insanity.

For my specific situation, I'm actually building a gamified task list app. So a party of maybe 4 heroes work together. When the player does tasks, they rescue themselves a little bit. But when someone slacks off, they morph into a villain and the rest of the team has to put in a little extra work to destroy or rescue them.

The theme itself doesn't matter (e.g. fantasy, scifi, horror), but the gameplay would mostly focus around survival and teamwork.

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    \$\begingroup\$ This requires more specific criteria - there are a lot of systems with a mechanic representing a character's slide into evil. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Nov 26 '14 at 4:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Love the idea, but it needs more detail about the nature of the system you seek. Group size, session length, minis-and-grid or theatre of the mind, preference for resolution mechanics (d6s only, polyhedrons, cards?), provided setting, chargen options pre-made or player-created, supernatural/sf/mundane tropes, and so forth--every detail about what you're looking for is useful. \$\endgroup\$ – BESW Nov 26 '14 at 4:29
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    \$\begingroup\$ Incidentally, are you looking for 'slide into villainy' in general? All of your examples are 'villainous alter ego slowly taking over'. (Personally, I really like the latter.) \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Nov 26 '14 at 4:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ That's... really important context. All the systems I'd recommend for exploring those themes rely heavily on improvisational narrative which really can't be pre-programmed. This would probably be a better fit for Game Development. \$\endgroup\$ – BESW Nov 26 '14 at 5:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ If this is posted at Gamedev.SE, be aware of what kinds of questions will get insta-closed. "How should I program this thing?" will be closed very quickly for instance. This might be something you have to work out yourself. \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Nov 26 '14 at 5:40