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Progress Report

Raziel Message Box: An RM2K's Message System Overhaul

Greetings, everyone.

This is the first progress report made for Raziel (and the first blog post I made on this website in a long while). Today I'll be showing you something you don't see a lot (if at all) in RPG Maker 2000's games: A different message system.

That's mostly because RM2K doesn't actually sport a lot of useful patches like his younger brother, RM2K3, does. This and the fact that most people nowadays seem to leave RM2K aside in favor of 2K3, and you have a formula for very few 2K games actually looking different from one another. Maybe they use some sort of menu system made from pictures and whatnot, but this, my friends, is everything but more of the same.

I present to you...

Raziel Message Box
An RPG Maker 2000's Message System Overhaul

Developed from scratch by Dr. XGB and using DestinyScript, language used in the Destiny Patch V2 by Bananen-Joe, the RMB is a complete overhaul of the message system that you normally use in the Editor.

This system was based on the XGB's Message Box, a message system also developed by Dr. XGB in 2013.

How it works

Basically speaking, most of RMB is built around a command called "DrawText". With this, we can do what the name implies using a sheet of symbols (in this case, letters) to display words in the game. This controls not only the text contained in text boxes but in the menus as well. In addition, it is highly customizable, being able to be changed and adapt to multiple languages (counting with the fact that the font you made the sheet of actually has these particular sets of symbols available to be included).

And since it's using its own method of drawing the boxes and text inside it, the system also gives space to the player to customize a good part of them while in-game, without the need of going inside the project's code to tamper with it.

RMB also counts with various types of text box drawing effects, such as fade, side to side, inside to outside, and more.

There is a little caveat, however. For most of the changes made by the player on the system via menu options, there will be a loading time of 7 to 10 seconds (this can also vary from computer to computer). This is necessary for the system to render all the fonts and for the new configuration to be displayed properly.


The RMB, as of now, has (and is subjected to changes):

• A completely advanced and stylized default text box

The default text box of RM2K has its charm, but now, with RMB, it's even better! Long dialogues aren't fated to be split into multiple text boxes any longer. All the text can be displayed with just one box and smooth scrolls, and if you missed a piece, you can always scroll back up using the up and down on the arrow keys or d-pad.
Facesets can now be bigger and organized without the need of separating them into multiple pictures. They also can be shown on both left and sides of the screen.
And, instead of an arrow indicating the end of the text, it's now the Z key being pressed (or the controller buttons).

• Controller-adaptable inputs

With the addition of the many features on Raziel, such as the Button Layout Menu, the player can now choose which input method he wishes to see VISUALLY (because RM2K doesn't actually detect controllers very well, nor can distinguish one from the other). This not only serves the message system but the minigames as well.

• Show text anywhere

Now the text isn't confined to three specific places. It can be displayed anywhere on the game screen, with or without the text box.

• Balloon-type text boxes

The text is showed in a box that isn't on the bottom/top of the screen. Mostly used for NPCs that don't have facesets. Their size can also be definable with a code. Choices can be displayed as well.

• Different styles of text boxes

The player can alternate between 5 styles of text boxes via menu options;

• Different types of fonts

The player can choose between 3 types of fonts (Silver, Mincho, and Gothic) via menu options. This not only will change the dialogue font but the menus as well;

• Adjustable the text box transparency (0~100%)

The player can adjust the alpha percentage of all text boxes via menu options. No need to choose between one or the other for all game like in 2K3;

• Different types of text speeds (Slow, Normal and Fast)

The player can choose via menu options how fast he wants the dialogue to show on the text box.

• Easy translation capabilities

With a tool that we'll be making available in the future, community translators won't have to poke around the game's code to translate the game. All they need to do is use the tool, translate the lines and with that, a file will be generated that the game will be able to read and make available for selection from the game's options menu.
And to be clear, every single line that is made with this message system is translatable! From dialogue and menu texts to the splash screen warning. And there is enough space for translators to breathe, without the need of creating new text boxes or meddling the code.


With that, I conclude this progress report. Hope you liked what you have seen so far!
Next time we'll be showing new things added graphically to the game, like the new maps, facesets, and more.
And hey, now I have a Ko-fi page! If you wish to help me and the project in any way, consider throwing me a bone. If you can't, just your comment on what you think already helps a lot.

Thank you for your time, and I'll be seeing you.

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