LOCKEZ'S PROFILE

LockeZ
I'd really like to get rid of LockeZ. His play style is way too unpredictable. He's always like this too. If he ran a country, he'd just kill and imprison people at random until crime stopped.
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The Unofficial Squaresoft MUD is a free online game based on the worlds and combat systems of your favorite Squaresoft games. UOSSMUD includes job trees from FFT and FF5, advanced classes from multiple other Square games, and worlds based extremely accurately upon Chrono Trigger, Secret of Mana, and Final Fantasies 5, 6, and 7. Travel through the original worlds and experience events that mirror those of the original games in an online, multiplayer format.

If a large, highly customized MUD, now over 10 years old and still being expanded, with a job system and worlds based on some of the most popular console RPGs seems interesting to you, feel free to log on and check it out. Visit uossmud.sandwich.net for information about logging on.
Born Under the Rain
Why does the jackal run from the rain?

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How long should an escape scene be?(Not escaping from battle)

I definitely agree that you need to hook the player quickly at the beginning of your game. However... an escape scene does just that. It's an action-oriented segment that involves navigating through an area and fighting enemies that are blocking your path... so why not make this the first dungeon? People want to get to the gameplay quickly, but that doesn't mean you need to end the scene ASAP; it means you need to put gameplay in it instead of just leaving it as a cut scene. "I need to get out of here, everyone's trying to kill me!" is more than good enough as an initial motivation for the player to engage in the game, and as the escape goes on you can give the player a vague idea of what got the hero into this mess, by having the enemies shout at the hero about why she needs to stop.

[RMMV] No EXE folder when game was delployed in windows 7

If you're not on the admin account in Windows, you don't have access to make changes to program folders. Therefore you need to store the game's project folder in your My Documents folder, instead of in the RPG Maker program folder, which is probably where it's being stored right now by default. Try cutting and pasting the project folder into My Documents, and then everything should work a lot more smoothly.

[RM2K3] 4th wall

Things you cannot do in RM2K3:

1) Design gameplay features

Health bars in RPGs: an actual game design discussion

author=Ratty524
Keep in mind, I don't really think games absolutely must have health indicators to make them good, it's just that I don't see a good reason why you shouldn't.
It's typically not enough of a good reason on its own. However, when combined with several other reasons that aren't good enough on their own, it might lead to the decision to hide enemy health in your game.


author=unity
I kinda like seeing the HP bars in Breath of Fire games after you've killed an enemy once in battle before ^_^
This is definitely a very nice thing that tangibly feels like PROGRESS! and OBJECTIVE COMPLETE! to the player. However, a side-effect is that bosses won't have visible HP bars, unless you handle them differently somehow.

FF13 had an interesting solution - you could gather bestiary data on an enemy either by spending a certain amount of time in combat against that enemy, or by casting Libra. The amount of time it took in combat was several battles worth for normal enemies, but you'd learn everything about a boss by about halfway through the battle, gradually learning its status immunities and elemental resistances as you used more and more skills on it. Libra could speed this up, but was a limit break skill that you could only cast once every three or four battles, and that prevented you from using more useful limit breaks. It got me to actually strategize around gathering the information, which I liked a lot, although it didn't fit particularly well in FF13 thematically.

I've also seen games where you can unlock the ability to display enemy HP bars somehow, like buying it with gold. I've played at least one game where you can buy bestiary data for an entire dungeon from a library in town, or you can save gold by choosing to collect it yourself by defeating the enemies. Once data on an enemy is collected, its HP was visible, like in Breath of Fire.

Health bars in RPGs: an actual game design discussion

If you really want to show HP for the rest of the game but hide it for one specific boss, it's just a matter of making that boss transform when it hits 0 HP.

I certainly didn't expect the baby-gamer entitlement of "all games NEED visible health bars" in a community of old fogies and fans of classic 2D games though. That's something I associate with needy young middle schoolders who can't handle not being handed everything on a silver platter. Back in my day, we had to spend a round casting Peep, and then write down the number and keep track of how much damage each hit after that dealt! With no shoes! And by golly it was good enough and we were thankful!

I don't think anyone is really looking up enemy HP on their phone except for maybe a maximum of one or two bosses per game though. When you get in a random battle with two Goblin Archers and an Earth Elemental it's just not worth it. And there is a little bit of tension that's added to the battle by wondering how long you have left, and a little bit of satisfaction the player receives when they fight the same enemy again later in the dungeon and they know how long it'll take because they've learned and are now better at the game.

Health bars in RPGs: an actual game design discussion

What are your preferences regarding visible health bars for enemies, specifically in turn-based games such as RPGs?

More important than your preferences, what types of games do you think need to show enemy health bars, or at least benefit from it? Are there games you think don't?

Does it matter if it's just a bar, or numbers, or both? When do you think it's appropriate to show them on screen all the time, versus having to press a key to bring up enemy data, versus having to spend a turn scanning the enemy, or equip a Sightscope accessory, or defeat ten of the enemy to unlock the bestiary entry?

In Final Fantasy Tactics, and most other tactical RPGs, the enemy health - and MP, and attack, and defense, and speed, and class, and passive skills - is visible any time the player is selecting an enemy to target. FF Tactics would not function as a game without this information being available to the player. The main point of the game is evaluating the situation in detail, and making tactical decisions based on that information. Even partial failure is heavily punished - it's possible for the player's party members to permanently die. The main theme of the game is the ability to read the situation at a master level and plan a complex strategy accordingly - this theme extends into the storyline as well, which is all about Larg and Goltana and Delita's plots and counter-plots.

To some extent, this sorta applies to the entire RPG genre. Almost any time a turn-based RPGs is meant to be challenging, the challenge revolves around the player figuring out the best strategy to deal with enemies - that's why they're turn-based, to give the player time to think. However, that's not always true. And in some cases you might intentionally want the player to have to figure out that information on their own instead of being given it for free, which in certain types of games can add another layer of strategy (though only a tiny fraction of players actually enjoy figuring out things like damage algorithms).

At the opposite end of the spectrum is Super Mario RPG. This game doesn't have health bars and doesn't need them. In fact, while adding health bars to Mario RPG wouldn't cause as many problems as removing them from FF Tactics, I'd argue that adding them would make the game less fun. One of the most noteworthy features of Mario RPG, and the main way it maintains the player's attention and enjoyment, is that it is constantly throwing new, unexpected things at the player. There are dozens of crazy minigames, between dungeons and even in the middle of them sometimes, where the player suddenly stops fighting enemies and instead rides a mine cart or slides down a waterfall or hops over barrels while chasing Booster up a hill. The dungeons are full of platforming segments that never do the same thing twice, and even the RPG combat never lingers long enough to let the player really become comfortable with a strategy. Everything is new, new, new, all the time. (And it's good that it is, because the RPG combat is extremely simplistic and would become boring fast otherwise.) Adding visible HP bars would let the player predict some aspects of the rest of the battle, see a few steps ahead, which would actually interfere with that main goal of keeping the player in a constant state of wonder.

Other types games where you might want to restrict that information are games which have an overarching theme of being kept in the dark. This would be true in almost any horror game, as well as games which might have a story about the protagonist being stepped on by people who control the world's information. Giving out information about the enemy would not go well with the theme of such a game.

I think in many non-tactical RPGs, it doesn't really matter one way or the other whether the player can see enemy HP at all. There are far more games where it's useful to add it than games where it's useful to hide it, though.

Let's Talk PCs: Avatars, viewpoints, and customization

Warcraft 3 is a really good example of what Craze is talking about. It forces the player to play as about ten different main characters as the game goes on, fighting on six different sides of a worldwide war. One of these characters is an honorable and compassionate hero, while another is literally trying to destroy the world. The rest are somewhere in between; there are even a couple of Macbeth-style tragic heroes.

I think that the changing viewpoint works very well in combination with less-than-heroic main characters, and also with any character that you're worried the player will be unable to relate to. It doesn't prevent the problem where the player says to themselves, "I just don't like playing as this character," but it prevents them from quitting your game over that problem. It's also extremely effective at telling both sides of a conflict, which is how it's used in Warcraft games and a lot of other RTS games (though most RTS games don't actually have a defined character whom the player is playing as; Warcraft 3 is pretty unusual in this regard).

Surprisingly, JRPGs seem to only rarely use a changing viewpoint, even though it seems like such an obvious choice for them. FF6, FF13 and Suikoden 3 all did it pretty well, but when most other JRPGs change the player's viewpoint it's only for an short side-segment, and then we're back to the main character.

FINAL FANTASY: RECORD KEEPER

Yeah, I guess the ideal solution would be a new event type that handles difficulty and rewards in a way that's satisfying to everyone.

Though, honestly, older players are really the only ones who need events in the first place; they'd run out of things to do if there weren't events. Newer players have lots of story dungeons to do still. Thinking about it more, I honestly think they could make most events consist of nothing except the boss rush, ++ fight, +++ fight, and ultimate fight.

FINAL FANTASY: RECORD KEEPER

From where I'm sitting the part 1/part 2 events are completely indistinguishable from the normal/elite events. All the event battles before the boss rush are pointless and don't really need to exist any more. And at this point the boss rush and the ++ boss are pretty trivial too in most events. I wish they'd make it so we can just start at the boss rush, and get rid of the mythril rewards for everything below it so there's no need to spend two days doing them all. It's nothing but grind for the sake of grind, taking up the player's time for no reason except to produce a skinner box effect.

What are you thinking about right now?

They won't jump you in the first place if you're carring a fuckin' M-16!