Description

The submission period for the contest is now over, but the discussion has just begun!

Forum thread here.

The results are in:

Gold - Azalathemad
Silver - Aegix_Drakan
Bronze - NeverSilent

Congratulations to them and to everyone who took part in the contest!





This is a Community episode a contest and an experiment in game design prompted by Sviel's suggestion among the many thought-provoking comments to that article. If you don't take part in the contest for fun, fame and prizes, do it for SCIENCE.

The individual goal of the contest is to design a RPG battle system and showcase it in one or a few battles, while avoiding the usual clutter of mechanisms that is a staple of the genre, with the help of some guidelines given below.

The collective goal is to search together for the essential principles of the RPG battle - the skeleton of decisions that gives them their flavor and depth.

This is more challenging than a normal contest because it rewards creative and analytical thinking rather than just good craftsmanship. On the other hand, I believe the results could greatly improve the future games produced by the community - both in terms of unexplored strategic potential, and of streamlining battle design to make game-wide balancing (which is one of the worst problems in RPGs) considerably easier.



The three elements listed below are the fundamental aspects of RPG battling. (Explanatory figures and details hidden in spoiler tags.)

They are often obscured by overly complex systems and tons of genre conventions. The purpose of this contest to see what happens when you lay them bare. I am convinced that tons of strategic possibilities have been overlooked so far, simply because they were hard to perceive under the layers of fluff.


1) All RPG systems have a common ground: damage per turn, with the goal of killing before you are killed.

Of course, in this mock-up battle with only Attacks, 1) the hero dies first, and 2) the player is bored to tears. So we must add skills and stuff. (Randomness creates variation that you have no control over, so I won't mention it here).


2) All skills/spells/buffs/items are ways of dealing or receiving that damage faster or slower, more continuously or in bursts. They control the way that damage is concentrated or diluted over time, like pushing and pulling on a rubber band. (The basic, fully stretched state is "spamming attack" as above: not exciting but it gets you there eventually).



Problems:
- the picture above suggests that countless possibilities have never been used (there are many other ways to position and combine these arrows). The most frequent improvement is agility buffs or gaining/losing turns, i.e. ways to do more complicated actions by employing multiple skills at once. But there are lots of other ways to expand on it (see Tips & Inspirations below for ideas).

- usually, healing simply erases some of the enemy's actions in an irrecoverable way. You attack n times, I heal, you attack again, I heal => no net effect, boring. Hence the huge asymmetry in RPG battles: heroes can always heal, most enemies cannot, because there's nothing more infuriating than seeing the enemy heal and erase all your efforts.
It would be more interesting to rethink healing so that the effect of an action was never canceled, but for instance delayed, or spread over X turns, or converted into something else - still there in some form, ready to be reused by future skills.



3) MP, Limit Breaks, status conditions, multiple characters and classes are ways of allowing the player variable access to the skills over time. That's because strategy is not about the winning move, it's about progressively setting up the conditions which allow that move.



Problem: in RPGs you generally have extremely basic (un)locking conditions within the battle:
- "if I have a lot of MP, I can use all my powerful spells"
- "if this character dies/sleeps/is berserk, I lose access to their skills"
- (occasionally) "if I use a weak skill I will be able to use a stronger one next"

I think this is the aspect of RPGs that leaves the largest room for improvement by far. For a battle to have more strategy, every action you take should allow new moves and block other ones, potentially for the rest of the fight. What you can do at any given moment should be the logical product of your past actions and your enemy's, if possible in more evolved ways that a binary question like "out of mana?" or "silenced?".




This all boils down to a simple idea: if you want to encapsulate the feeling of combat, what you need is
- balance of power, represented by any gauge or number (and its evolution in time),
- seizing opportunities, represented by the diversity of available options and how you get or lose access to them.
Everything else is decorative, and there is much more freedom in how you could translate this into a system than what has ever been explored in any game so far.




- Rules with "must" are requirements.

- Rules with "should" can be transgressed at your own risk, if you think your interpretation is more clever than the original rule (feel free to contact me to talk about it).


1) Game:

- The game can be made using any software, but it must contain everything it requires to run on its own.

- You can reuse the Default Battle System in clever ways, use scripts, or make a custom system of any degree of sophistication. You won't be judged on the prettiness of the implementation, only on the strategic depth of the principles beneath.

- The entry can be a single or multiple battles long (but we will judge at most 4 or 5 battles, not 40). It should not contain any cutscene or exploration phase, unless they are entirely skippable.
=> You can make an entire game out of your system, just give the judges a way to play only the 1 to 5 battles you want to showcase.

- There can be as many or as few characters & enemies as you wish. The rules suggested here should make a 1-character 1-enemy duel as complex as a full-scale battle.

2) Skill design:

- The only gauge must be HP. You can work around this rule and make MP/AP/Limit Break equivalents using the rules below, but tons of extra points will be given to contestants who instead try to do something really new.

- There must be no randomness in the effect of an attack or skill. This contest is just an experiment in RPG tactics, so the player should be able to make elaborate plans without computing conditional probabilities in their head.

- Skills should be designed to reflect principle 2) in the Rationale section above as clearly as possible
i.e. skills are ways to change the repartition of damage over time. The effect of any skill in those terms should be very clear, to let players compare skills and conceive strategies more easily. For instance, instead of directly dealing damage, skills could change the number of times a character attacks in a turn (it's easier to compare "1 attack" with "3 attacks" than to have to chose between spells that inflict 70HP on one enemy or 10HP/turn for 4 turns on 2 enemies).


- For more points, every skill should bring something new to the table. No skill should be "the same but stronger". Each skill should provide a different way of manipulating the repartition of damage over time, that cannot be produced by using other skills.

3) Skill unlocking:

- There must be rules to determine when you can or cannot use a given skill. We are trying here not to default to a simple gauge like MP: expending mana/drinking ethers is a very binary way of implementing actions that (un)lock other actions. Ideally, every action could have:
* multiple effects in unlocking other actions (e.g. a feint opens up various attacks)
* multiple conditions for its own unlocking (e.g. an attack requires the right posture, the right distance, and the right weakness in the enemy's defense)
* multiple ways to fulfill these conditions

- As much as possible, the rules for locking/unlocking should not be special cases (e.g. Fire Sword unlocks Mega-Smash), but more general logical principles. Even better if they apply similarly to the enemies' skills!

- As much as possible, locking/unlocking should be long lasting, i.e. not only dependent on the current state of the characters, but also on past actions both by them and by their enemies.

Counter-example to these 3 points: Being "out of mana" is a locking effect that
- depends only on your current state (no matter how you reached it or what the enemy has been doing)
- affects all skills at the same time
- has no real trade-off: more mana always equals more good
- and can be canceled with a single action (drinking an Ether).
By contrast, in a typical strategy game, every time you move a piece, you are closing off some possibilities and opening new ones by combination with the positions of all other pieces, so every move along the way can play some role in your victory.


- You are free to invent the detail of these locking rules, but more points will be given if they are simple and intuitive.
Example: in board games, it's simple geometry that creates these rules (a piece/unit contributes to your tactics by blocking a line of sight, or flanking an enemy...). Here you could use some sort of spatial logic as well, or all sorts of different principles (see Tips & Inspirations below for examples).


- If you have multiple battles, there can be permanent effects transferred from one battle to the next.
i.e. "items" are skills following all the rules above, except their locking/unlocking effects are not limited to one battle (e.g. a consumable item simply locks itself permanently once used, but there could be more elaborate patterns).




General tips and suggestions:

- Anyone who has trouble with the rules can ask questions in a comment or PM. I can help with things such as checking that skills are not reducible to one another, if you want to do it the mathy way.

- "one goal=one action" is the antithesis of strategy. Every action should serve multiple goals and every goal require multiple actions. Real creativity appears when you start finding ways to control the breadth of actions at your and your enemy's disposal, trapping them into predictable moves while extending your own possibilities.

- you can draw some inspiration from CCGs like Magic the Gathering. They are in fact very close to the concepts exposed here for RPG battles: the "skill unlocking" revolves partly around drawing the cards from your deck, with special effects such as reshuffling the deck or drawing more often. Notice that most CCGs contain effects that allow to bring back cards that have already been used/discarded, which is a way of making even past actions relevant to your current tactical options.

- It could be great to have a visual aid for damage repartition/displacement over turns (perhaps a graph of damage over time, in the spirit of what I did in the Rationale section) or some other way to make the effect of any skill perfectly clear and analyzable by the player.

- A suggestion: skills could displace either the same quantity of damage (e.g. 1HP if you're going the small-numbers route), or all the damage dealt in the target turn(s) (including contributions from other skills). This will make elaborate tactics much easier to figure than having a lot of different quantities or percentages. The less math the player needs to do, the more they can make clever plans.

- How much damage is moved around by a skill should not depend on some intrinsic property of the character or the enemy (e.g. elemental weakness). We want strategies to be effective because of what the enemies have done, not because of what they are (i.e. strategy rather than a puzzle that can be solved once and for all). What will differentiate them is their inventory of skills and how they use them.

- You are allowed to "disguise" to some extent the mechanical aspects detailed above to make the game more appealing or closer in appearance to traditional RPGs, as long as damage-moving and locking rules are clearly stated in-game or in a design document included with the game.

Don't go too fancy though: the goal is to expose the skeleton of RPG battles, not bury it under fluff.


Some random starting ideas:

* Why not boil it down to a single HP bar and have each group try to push it in a different direction? (somewhat like Last Word)

* What if a single attack could kill, and the whole battle is a game of counters and feints to try to get that attack in before the enemy does? (Bushido Blade style)

* What if the "rubber band" of damage is elastic, and tends to come back to its natural state over time (so that both bursts of damage and healing progressively come undone)

* Why not use many more status conditions than usual, each one affecting some fraction of the skills (like Silence prevents Magic, but less generic), or even interacting with each other.

* For instance, why not call status conditions "stances" and use concepts from martial arts or fencing to create the skill unlocking logic? (depending on your distance, your weapon, your stance and the enemy's, you can use ground fighting, feints, throws, locks and so on)

* What if there were more categories than just allies and enemies with which to interact through the skills? (for instance neutral resources in the environment)

* For a simple extension of the DBS, you could have a number of different characters with a system for switching them in battle, then group skills that should be locked or unlocked together by giving them to the same character (or make them combos requiring multiple characters), then add conditions to access/summon that character.

* A limited component of TRPG-like motion is not forbidden (think The Reconstruction), although I'd like to see contestants tread newer ground as well.

* For multiple battles, how about having enemies who have the same brute force as you, but are programmed to have an increasingly broad range of tactical possibilities? Every encounter would actually serve the overall gameplay by teaching you how to deal with them in more and more elaborate settings, instead of being its own beast that loses all purpose once mastered.



Recommendations given in the comments section:
An episode of Retronauts literally just came out that discusses RPG battle systems.

http://www.retronauts.com/?p=846.





Anyone who wants to help me judge can let me know here or by PM, I will require their help depending on how many submissions we get. I will ask the judges to read this conversation if they haven't already, so as to have an idea of what we are looking for here.

Tentative criteria for judging:


Originality (20pts): How much does the system contribute to pushing the boundaries of the genre?

Example: Can you find ways to expand on the JRPG system that are not just adding one more gauge, or one more way to get a stat bonus?

Elegance (25pts): Is the system using as few ingredients as possible to achieve its goals in a precise way?

Example: Is each skill truly different from the others? Have you found a simpler way to achieve what usually requires 3 gauges, 10 stats and 100 different items?

Clarity (20pts): How well can the player understand the system, its strategic stakes, and the reason their actions succeed or fail?

Example: Are the effects of each action clearly labeled? Does the system avoid having the player do mental calculus to evaluate the result of their actions? Is the skill unlocking logic consistent and predictable?

Depth (25pts): How much does the system allow and reward elaborate plans, creativity and tactical intuition?

Example: Can we predict how our actions will guide the enemies' reactions, allowing us to manipulate them? Is the game more than pure HP/MP/Item attrition?

Bonus (10pts): Anything a judge finds especially worthy of praise.




I don't expect that making the game will take more than a couple of days at most; however for the sake of all people with a busy schedule, the contest will run from July 27 to August 27 23:59 EST. (however I won't mind if people get the time zone wrong)




The top 3 contestants will get to choose one of the following prizes:

(x1) Any game under 20 USD on Steam or the Humble store, because I might as well make it rain, FOR SCIENCE.

(x3) A (reasonable) drawing by yours truly. Preferably characters (fanart or original, any style), possibly simple environment shots or short multipanel gag in sketchy style. You can do whatever you want with it, use it as title screen or make a tattoo or sell it on eBay.

(x1) A cameo in my future game (hey, that works for Kickstarters. NB: I'm not really expecting anyone to pick this, but I'll give details if a winner is actually interested.)

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Ah okay got it this time, I had trouble seeing what you meant by battle simulations. My bad. So the RPG version of training missions, teaching you stuff you could figure on your own, with the added twist that they also give you levels because if you're training you clearly need them? Yes that sounds like a really clever idea, I like it.

I am just unsure whether they should, in addition to (or instead of) better stats, grant you more options via new techniques as you suggest, or not. Sounds like a shame to be restricted in your options because you're more strategic. Unless those techniques are essentially the easy way of doing something that you can already do the hard way on your own - and in that case, "hard" should mean "requiring wits", not "painful" or "tons of micromanagement".
But that's excellent food for thought.

(Edit: and now that I've understood what you mean, my suggestions are not really doing that, at all - still Arcanum and Planescape are games where you can win only be talking, which you may enjoy. My only regret is that, except in a few conversations, they mostly require character wits, not player wits, so just a big number on a character sheet and it's a sure win.)

Edit2: And I agree with caparo: make that game, now :P
author=Hasvers
I am just unsure whether they should, in addition to (or instead of) better stats, grant you more options via new techniques as you suggest, or not. Sounds like a shame to be restricted in your options because you're more strategic. Unless those techniques are essentially the easy way of doing something that you can already do the hard way on your own - and in that case, "hard" should mean "requiring wits", not "painful" or "tons of micromanagement".
But that's excellent food for thought.


I'll give an example which I'd like to have in this particular game.
At some point, your character will be able to gain or buy a bow and be taught its basic uses and principles. For this particular game system, having a bow allows you to attack when distance is higher than a specific value, and allow extra attacks in case of preemptive attacks in open areas. This is a skill you can use from start to finish, without adding anything - in best case scenario, it has a unique experience gauge which allows it to be balanced from the beggining to the end of the game (increasing accuracy and damage, allowing criticals to be more damaging, that kinda thing). But, if you decide to play with focus on, lets say, hunting monsters, you can learn a specific Hunting skill tree which allows you to, using the right bow for the situation, to enable specific skills which are relevant to hunting all enemy creatures with the monster tag - examples of this are the possibility of hitting specific points for specific effects, learning a drawing skill which reduces the distance needed for a shot, allowing for the First Draw to happen in non open areas as a jungle or something... These are flavor. They increase your efficience in an area of the game which you don't necessarily needs to go if you don't wanna - and if you wanna, they're optional in the same way.
And so, if you are to learn these skills, you'll create a scene in which a character - a Mentor, if you will - will take you to jungle and the story will be as such that he'll point to you how to use the skill, and the creature will appear giving optimal and non optimal possibilities for its use, so you can learn the difference between them, and there'll be a the internal stat counter for the skill which levels up when you use it successfully or in a specific way (much like leveling Drive Forms in Kingdom Hearts 2), which will allow you to learn the next skill on the line. Something which I believe that should be avaliable as well is to simply go to the trainer and invest in-game time to increase this experience - there will be people who will derive pleasure from having as many skills as possible, and I don't think they should be gated by grinding, even if I do think these sequences should talk about the best circunstances to use the skill they're currently training (again, something spoke about in the Fighting Games video).
The same thing would apply for hunting people, or Dragons, whatever, and across all weapons - so, you got sword, and you wish to learn a dueling style, so you'll learning specifically smallsword and dagger dueling, and make avaliable skills that can be used optimally with this set up, and this will increase your options to your play style, but someone who don't wanna train smallswords can still win duels, even if it'll need him to be more crafty about it.
Hope that's clear enough of an explanation :3

author=Hasvers
Edit2: And I agree with caparo: make that game, now :P


Hahaha, I'd love to play it as well! Alas, I'm just an aspiring game designer and scriptwriter, so unless I have a programmer with me, or learn how to program, it'll take some time for it to happen :3
But if someone wants to do it with me, I'm completely avaliable *.*
Well, I have been thinking more in the system:

You see, the character has 5 classes which he can switch in battle. He starts with a "neutral" class, in which all of his stats are equilibrated, having access to a equal quantity of skills that favor each stat, because as I said before, the unlocking of skills depends of the value of the characters stats. The other four classes favour a certain stat, so, if you switch to one of these classes, you will unlock a high variety of skills of the favored stat, but at the cost of locking the skills of the less favored stats. But even if you have the neutral class, or one of the stat favoring classes, you can still unlock a certain stat skills, by using skills that boost that certain stat. These skills are available since the beginning of the battle, and they're very useful if you want to unlock other stats skills (think of these skills as a "stacking states" kind of skill, each time you use said skill, you add one stack of a state that increases one of the characters stats.), but the drawback of these skill, is that it spends many action points, making you end your turn before if you use it many times in a row. Also, at the right conditions, the enemy can cast a skill that has chances of removing all the stacked states of a certain stat... but the good part is, that also, in the right conditions, you can do this to the enemy too!

I thing that with the right balancing and configuration, this system could end working very well! Any opinions about this?
author=Ilan14
Well, I have been thinking more in the system:

You see, the character has 5 classes which he can switch in battle. He starts with a "neutral" class, in which all of his stats are equilibrated, having access to a equal quantity of skills that favor each stat, because as I said before, the unlocking of skills depends of the value of the characters stats. The other four classes favour a certain stat, so, if you switch to one of these classes, you will unlock a high variety of skills of the favored stat, but at the cost of locking the skills of the less favored stats. But even if you have the neutral class, or one of the stat favoring classes, you can still unlock a certain stat skills, by using skills that boost that certain stat. These skills are available since the beginning of the battle, and they're very useful if you want to unlock other stats skills (think of these skills as a "stacking states" kind of skill, each time you use said skill, you add one stack of a state that increases one of the characters stats.), but the drawback of these skill, is that it spends many action points, making you end your turn before if you use it many times in a row. Also, at the right conditions, the enemy can cast a skill that has chances of removing all the stacked states of a certain stat... but the good part is, that also, in the right conditions, you can do this to the enemy too!

I thing that with the right balancing and configuration, this system could end working very well! Any opinions about this?


This strikes me as a dynamic Drive system (I'm thinking about Kingdom Hearts 2 a lot today), but I don't know how I feel with stats being gate for skill use - even if with the ability to be constantly changing your stats, as I'm reading it, it feels cumbersome, and too punitive. I wonder how much frustration losing all stacks of a stat would generate. Also, if these stats are relevant to damage output regardless of class, I can see some ways for one to abuse the system.
Would there be any other ways to gate the use of skills?

But in the end, the viability of it can only be seen after it's implemented - it's all about how you would balance it, I guess. It does seems like an unique system, I'd like to see how it could turn out :3
Darn, double post. Sorry by that >.<
Well, there will be another ways of gaining stats, but I'll assure you that I'm going to try not making it easy enough for one to abuse from it. For example, as I said before, using the stat gaining skill makes you end your turn quickly, giving the chance to the enemy to do a more effective retaliation, and you will only be able to stack a limited quantity of states of a certain stat (This also counts for the enemy too!). But I'll will work more on it to try to make the combat not very easy, but also not very hard, and I may also consider an alternate way of gaining skills. Thanks for the advice!

P.S. : Don't worry about the Kingdom Hearts 2 thing, that game is so great that is impossible not to think about it!
WetMattos and Ilan> Both your systems are interesting, yet in both cases I feel compelled to warn you about bloat :P

It's something I might have said a lot already since it's one of the goals of the very contest we're supposedly discussing here, so forgive me for repeating myself ;) But I'd really recommend to go at your system from the bottom up, one thing at a time, adding new ones only when the previous ones already work well together and the new one seems to make a real difference.

For instance, why that number of stats and classes? What is the unique thing that every one does that couldn't be done otherwise?
Without increasing progressively, balancing becomes incredibly difficult due to lot of false variation (e.g. in games with elemental weaknesses, most of the time it's just "choose the right color of fireball to kill that enemy faster"; which just means "restart, change your equipment, put the round peg in the round hole, now you win"; and in many cases you won't even care because the difference between the best and the second best is not worth the time spent thinking about it).

WM> Skyrim is an excellent example of terribly unbalanced bloat in that precise direction; it is roughly what you describe for the skill system, minus the mentor/training mission aspect, and 99% of the skills are entirely pointless because they are all different ways of getting the exact same +1 bonus to your attack, all forgotten when you've found some top-tier fireball and spammed your way to victory.

Of course I'm being a bit excessively negative with that problem, but really, balancing in almost all RPGs is terrible for a reason.
@Hasvers, I guess it's a good thing then that the system I have in mind for this specific contest is an good old elemental rock paper scisors with a twist.

I'm pretty much aware of it - I can't stand lots of things on Skyrim, and that's one of them. But I'd like to add here that this particular idea is for a entirelly writen game, profoundly based on narrative and storytelling, which I understand that may be able to mitigate this feeling by giving meaning to the skills in their context. Moreover, I'm an adherent to Riot Games' design values to a fault, which means that if I can't create meaningful interaction with a game system which increases the possibilities without falling prey to FOOS in the way, I'll simply scrap the idea and go for the next.

I've had, in the past, the idea for a game in which your character would do what ammounted to civil disobedience and revolutionary actions in a fantastic setting with more or less the same idea of multiples paths for the ending, in which every single action in the game could be controlled with the directional pad and two buttons whose actions would change contextually. No inventory, no levels, no in-game esoteric values, just doing what you can see and developing player skill for tasks with increasing complexity levels.
That's my solution against a possible bloating in the system - context and narrative to create meaningful interactions. Of course, I can't be sure it'll work, but it looks good enough in the paper for me to dream of it :P

EDIT: Oh, also, balancing for skill. Higher complexity/level should not ammount to more power, but rather to more strategic possibilities. Instead of having a +1 fireball, I'd teach my character a fire skill with conditions generic enough for it to be used often but not as often that it becomes a FOOS - a Blazing Inferno skill which demands you to set up an Oil Bath, which is useful because shield bearing enemies are far too resistent to just normal Fireballs to work in an optimal way, but it would be less effective against fast beasts and agile human fighters 'cuz they wouldn't be on the Oil long enough for skill to trigger, and so on.
author=Hasvers
I'd really recommend to go at your system from the bottom up, one thing at a time, adding new ones only when the previous ones already work well together and the new one seems to make a real difference.


Now that I think about it, I tend to think ideas too fast without thinking on how would they fit in the game, and that normally ends up with me screwing things up...
I should probably think about the skills better. Thank you, Hasvers.
Ilan> Well thank you for taking part in this contest and for trying to do it well!

You can perhaps proceed by dichotomy: start from one example that is exciting but too complex, and one that is functional but too simple, then proceed a little bit in each direction until you find balance. Don't hesitate to ask if you ever need mathematical help to check that your skills will do what you want them to do.

WM> Haha, well I don't necessarily hate element-based systems so don't worry, I will not run around naked and screaming upon seeing your entry. Though I do feel that the RPS system has become the go-to paradigm for adding trade-offs in RPG-like battles, and I'm sure there are other ones worth exploring.

I've had, in the past, the idea for a game in which your character would do what ammounted to civil disobedience and revolutionary actions in a fantastic setting
I positively love that idea.
(upon reading a Gene Sharp paper, I couldn't help but start dreaming of a strategy game of nonviolent action)
Thematically if not gameplayically, you might like Unrest, a recent kickstarted game that is about, well, unrest due to famine and xenophobia in a fantasy Indian city - although you mostly deal with the consequences rather than take part in the action.

I both like and fear contextual actions: the danger with them is that, since the same action can potentially mean anything, it's difficult for the player to develop a global feel of how they affect their environment and to start planning combinations of actions to lead them toward success (versus, say, constant physical laws in a platformer which quickly give you a feel for what you will or won't be able to do). On the other hand, elegant design is a huge plus in my book, so I don't know. If you manage to make it all intuitive, that could be fantastic.

I have no idea what a FOOS is however!

Also: learning to program is really worth it. I had almost never coded four years ago, now I can prototype a game from scratch in a matter of days - which is probably more than you need since nowadays you have awesome frameworks like Unity (or even RM and scripts). Even if you're not the main programmer on a project, not being reliant on someone else to test your ideas is a gift that keeps on giving.
LouisCyphre
can't make a bad game if you don't finish any games
4523
I'm going to have to remember to add a "boss rush" option to my title screen or something. I seem to have started making a proper game.
@Hasvers, yeah, I've heard that about programming way too often not to take it seriously - I just have a lot of obstacles to clear before being able to do so :3
Also, FOOS, or First Order Optimal Strategies, is a concept presented in the Balancing for Skill episode of Extra Credits which encapsulates a low effort, low skill ability which creates a great ammount of power - as in, more power than anything else avaliable at that point, even if it isn't the optimal choice. Here, the exact moment he start talking about it :3
Quick question. I've modified the main Parameters to serve as different sources of attack and defense - most notably, AGI and LUK becoming Leg Strength and Leg Defense. I shouldn't have to modify the agility equation, but are there any luck-based equations that might need to be modified?

Also, I'm trying to figure out more ways to seal and unseal moves - certain moves being sealed UNLESS you're in a certain state, and defining multiple conditions for skill sealing and unsealing. Any suggestions?
Marrend
Guardian of the Description Thread
20691
@rosearcrimson: The default behavior in VX Ace is that LUCK comes into play is during the application of status conditions. I don't know where in the calculations (or the code, for that matter) it does it, though.
author=rosesarecrimson
Also, I'm trying to figure out more ways to seal and unseal moves - certain moves being sealed UNLESS you're in a certain state, and defining multiple conditions for skill sealing and unsealing. Any suggestions?

State -> Features -> add skill

Skill should be available as long as the state is active (if skill is not in the actor's class skill list)
**Edit**

There's a script by Victor Sant called Victor Action Conditions.

link to his blog
author=caparo
**Edit**

There's a script by Victor Sant called Victor Action Conditions.

link to his blog


Thanks caparo!
Dammit. Summer Exam season is upon me. ;_;

I'll do what I can do finish (thank god most of it's done already, minus the AI and testing), but still...I had hoped I'd have another week to work on it without needing to study my ass off.
Gah, the AI. Oh the AI.

Its such a pain.

Default AI is too random. But scripted AI is too predictable.
WOO! Got the stance switching done! Once I give the boss his moves for each stance I'll be able to test the guy!

....GAH! I assigned the wrong moves to the boss, and forgot to implement the common events to seal and unseal his moves! ;_; Two steps forward one step back.