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FADE and RPG Maker MV

  • Milennin
  • 08/04/2015 11:58 AM
  • 7273 views
With the announcement for the new RPG Maker MV engine, I've been thinking about transfering over my project to this new engine. There would obviously be pros and cons to doing so, so to organise my thoughts:

Pros to remaking my project in RPG Maker MV:
-Have my game out on an engine that's actually relevant, making it easier to draw people's attention to it.
-Multi-device support. The ability to play my game on mobile devices would be a large plus, and contribute to getting more people to play it.
-Built-in side view battle system, just like RPG Maker 2003's, but hopefully with a huge amount of more options, stability and convenience working with it.

Cons to remaking my project in RPG Maker MV:
-It would take a huge amount of time and work to remake everything from scratch.
-Higher screen resolution means having to upscale all my graphics assets, making it less convenient when editing stuff etc.
-Some things I currently have working in FADE might not be possible to do in the new engine, and so I might have to sacrifice certain features or gameplay elements.

To elobarate on the last point: I'm mostly worried about the way turn-based system generally works.
-In FADE combat, when selecting an action for a character, that action is immediately executed. This helps make battles feel more exciting and fast-paced, as well as let the player control the order in which they want each character to move (more strategic choices to be made).
-In VX Ace combat, you first select the actions of all party-members before they are executed. This is boring, because there is more down-time between turns, and also offers less control to the player.

Other, smaller things I'm worried about that might be missing in the new engine is the option to use animated monsters in battle. This is another huge feature in FADE, that I would not easily sacrifice. Maybe certain non-combat things might be more difficult to pull off if the new engine scales back on the amount of eventing options like VX Ace already did in the past.
Maybe these things might be possible to get working anyway with the help of scripts, who knows. It's hard to say at this point when there's basically no real information out yet.

What it eventually will come down to is how much there will be possible with the combat system - I'm not too worried about the overworld features. Looking at VX Ace, it has so many more things you can do with the combat system, things I wish I could have working in my RPG Maker 2003 project, along with much better stability (damn you, skill cancel and party-wide stun game overs!) I wish I could have combat events working under common events, maybe some kind of script that would let me scale the power of skills depending on character level - stuff like that would make things so much more convenient and easier to work with.

All that said, I certainly won't be abandoning my current project, and I'll still work on making progress in the RPG Maker 2003 version for now. Since for all we know, the new engine is going to suck and not be worthy of running FADE on it (lol :D)

Posts

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I would say keep your game, and finish the story. Recreating the game can put you in perma-hiatus.

That said, MV looks like a good engine. I'd say save it for a sequel, if you have one.
The main reason I'd want to remake it in MV is because getting anything combat-related done in RPG Maker 2003 is such a painful struggle. There are a lot of things I want to do, but either are not possible to make, are severely limited or clunky in their execution, or in a lot of cases, even if they are possible, take a lot of time to get them to work - mostly due to no battle events possible under common events. Copy-pasting battle code in every single battle encounter every time I come up with a new mechanic or skill is going to take up more and more time as I make progress. On top of that, 2003's combat system is also horrendously unstable (I'm sure you'll agree with me on that).

FADE in its current state is less than 20% done, so remaking it in a new engine would be more like a time investment. Spend the time to remake maybe ~1/6th of my game, but once it's done it should make the rest of the development a lot smoother and open up a lot more options at the same time. As well as being more accessable thanks to the mobile device support.

But it'll really depend on what's going to be possible with it. If it's merely going to be VX Ace with mobile support and side-view combat I'll probably skip the idea, as I'm not that big of a fan of VX Ace in general. And since this engine is unlikely to release in the west any time soon, I'll just continue in RPG Maker 2003 for the time being. :)

FADE has somehow developed in what's likely going to be the biggest project I'll ever undertake. I can confirm, no sequel planned, lol. If I do make a game after FADE, it'll be something entirely different, and a lot smaller, too.
I think that you should stick to Rpgmaker 2k3..since alot of people waited for the game and transfering it to VX will only make thing even harder.And will take more time than you think,And yes i get the idea that you need to make this the "Ultimate project" which is good.and you could do that with rpgmaker 2k3.
Starting remading the game is just gonna make you give up.
I'll say stick with Rpgmaker 2k3 it actually has more capabilities thatn you think.
I think rider's right. I've switched my original game (the New Earth) to XP and I learned later that as good as it should have been, there was no real way to attack more than 0 damage with unarmed (I had a brawler). SO the whole game which I could have done on 2k3 wound up being a mess. Later, I started work on Oracle of Tao using an engine I knew, and it went much more smoothly.

If you want to collaborate, I can help. It's gonna be a bear, since I have Tales to work on, and I've seen your scary, scary battle codes. But I can at least try to test out battles for difficulty and offer input.

At the very least, try to write out a script or storyline, along with all the things you have so far, and all the things you want to have. This will give you focus for the transfer rather than feeling like I did when... urgh, yea, I had a massive data loss because I found out it wasn't saving my games properly. So Tales From The Reaper effectively lost chapter 3 & 4. Despite knowing the plot, I wound up changing chapter 3, and it's been slow going.
I agree there's the possibility remaking the game could result in me quitting on the project. And that being unfamiliar with the new engine could slow things down more than I might like. Well, looks like it'll stay in RPG Maker 2003 then.

On the subject of scary battle codes, that's one of the reasons I've considered upgrading to the new engine. I have no idea how much code RPG Maker 2003 can handle before it's starting to cause slow downs. Seeing how I still have a lot of stuff to add, I wonder if it'll be able to keep up. But maybe I'm worrying about nothing...

If I would transfer, I'd try to keep it as similar to the original project as possible, including reusing (and upscaling) all the graphics, music and sound effects. Dialogue would pretty much be copied over.
I have most of FADE planned out, in big lines at least. I know where I want the story to go and what to make the characters do. I have ideas for dungeons, towns, villains etc, so I'm not too worried about losing any of that.
author=Milennin
On the subject of scary battle codes, that's one of the reasons I've considered upgrading to the new engine. I have no idea how much code RPG Maker 2003 can handle before it's starting to cause slow downs. Seeing how I still have a lot of stuff to add, I wonder if it'll be able to keep up. But maybe I'm worrying about nothing...


It's actually just scary because if all code isn't just so, the battlers basically stop moving in terms of turns. I remember trying to rebalance that dragon (since I didn't like it moving as fast in terms of healing and casting that meteor), and I changed one page to try to switch phys shield and myst shield, and the monster no longer attacked or something.

You would be surprised. I have 19 pages, and the Turn 1x ones (I have two, which unfortunately messes up turns somewhat) if written out would be like 10 pages long, since I have about 11 characters, and each of them has commands that activate stuff. The key to fast processing is common events. When you common event, processing is done on another screen, and it seems to be done faster. This means, if you have alot of events that happen for every battle, common event pretty much makes it run smoothly. Ideally, we would have the new 2k3 have dynrpg and be able to copy paste entire stuff to common events, AND run the turn based plugins. I have over 500 common events, and the are rather long, and yet there is not significant lag except in screens that had 300+ events (again, events on the screen vs off). Despite that some of these are parallel processes that run constantly, common events run VERY fast. As in, I used the date/time plugin as part of my game, to give the month, day, weekday, year, hour and minute. I check it in a common event, and follow up with another common event, that goes through the process of setting the weekday as a name, the month name, checks whether anyone's birthday is around, and so on. It's extremely long and complicated, since this also includes my famed menstrual cycle status. I can walk around with no lag whatsoever. A big map with too many events, nah, I'm lagging. The big lag contributors are pictures that update or rotate while characters are talking, weather (mainly because you ask it to wait), and stuff like switches and variables that activate in battle outside common events.

Yea, jot the stuff you got down on a piece of paper. Oracle of Tao was actually a high school idea for the C++ programming class (until we all realized none of us could make games this way) that I worked on with a friend. I found the notes years later, and was able to start from there. Dialogue doesn't need to be spot on, so much as the plot/characters/motivations/etc of the game.
Ah, in that way. Yeah, the battle code in FADE is pretty fragile and easily broken if you don't know exactly what is supposed to go where.
I see in your project you spread out your battle code over many different pages. Not sure if that would make it more efficient for the game to read, but doesn't it take a lot more work to copy/paste that into every encounter?

I'd absolutely love to see DynRPG support for the official RPG Maker 2003 version, because being able to put battle code into common events would make things a infinitely more convenient and easier to work with. I haven't kept up with the news on the forums much, so I have no idea if there are plans for or not. If it ever happens it would be a huge time saver.

I've learned from experience it's indeed best to write down ideas. I have a text document in which I keep track of stuff I want to put in my game. Story elements, characters, skill ideas, monsters etc.
No, not really. It is mainly a deal, where I get one code page, and I copypaste that 300 times. A little at a time, it's not a big deal. Also, my actual battle code is 3 pages (in terms of the turn-based, look at Tales From The Reaper; it's actually horribly simple to add). The other 14 or so pages, are from special commands, and I did basically one and done. Adding a new monster event, I basically copy from a battle that has the same exact number of monsters. I'd in fact recommend a read-through of the code for Tales, it also has physical and magical blocking, but does it a bit more smoothly.

Hard copy too. You never know what your computer will do, and I've even had flash drives fall apart on me (a sturdy looking one had the glue melt while in the car). Print it, before it's too late... Nah, but seriously, bad luck with record keeping.
It does physical and magic blocking more smoothly than Oracle of Tao or than FADE? I just checked the code and you make it happen by stunning and then recovering the party - which seems to be pretty similar to the way I do it in FADE.

I'm not too paranoid about data loss, but that's because I've never had a hard drive or something fail. The only data I lose is those I only keep stored in my head. :( But I do put back-ups of my game on an online file upload service, so even if my computer breaks, it should at least save a recent copy of my game.
Than Fade. It is all internalized (except for a simple if MonsterImmune is ON switch which shows the animation). It was ALOT of work, but it paid off big. I basically got your idea, from looking at the code, and then was like "man that's good, but I want it less all over the place because I'll have to copy it a zillion times and don't want it to stall monster creation." So I just sorta tweaked stuff until I had a copy that just took like four lines.

I've looked at your code, and then back at mine, but I don't see much difference, lol. Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't see how yours does it more smoothly?

We both have battle code that calls to a common event when a character uses x-command when targeting a monster that will block physical or magical.
Then in our common event, we both inflict stun and immediately remove it again.
What do you mean by having to copy it a zillion times to make it work? The only times I have to copy the blocking code is when I have a monster in the monster group that is able to block physical or magical attacks, in which case I simply copy the entire part of the code that involves characters using commands from a previous monster group with the ability to block.



Also, could you place your image under a hide tag? Makes it easier to scroll through the comments.
It seemed like your had alot more switches or something. And it was more scattered or something. I dunno. Mebbe, I haven't checked it recently.

(Pffft, Coming to America. "We're MacDowell's, they're McDonalds. They have the golden arches, we have the golden arks. The serve their burgers on a bun with sesame seeds. Ours has no seeds.")

Fixed it.

I think the difference between mine and yours is that the only reason it has the switch is because it shows the battle animation. Yours seems to use the switch for the effect itself. Mine wouldn't have a switch period, and would just use the status effect. Lemme look at my common event, and I'll tell you.

Mmmm, that's the difference. Mainly under the hood.



Mine uses the status, and a variable to set what attack it is. Depending on the attack, it can block all certain weapons or status. With a variable, it is more efficient, because one variable versus switch for each hero. Plus I did a WHOLE lot for physical attacks, as you can see.
A variable would be more efficient, but I find a switch for this kind of thing easier to instantly see what is going on in the battle code, especially if I come back to my game after a few months not working on it. I might consider changing it to a variable at some later point in development if I can be bothered replacing it all, since optimising my battle code is one of those things I like to work on. The current battle code is already so much shorter and tons more efficient than the one I used in the earliest versions (admittedly, the battle_atb_overhaul plugin did help a lot in that respect).

And yeah, you do seem to have a lot of things for physical block. Don't worry, I have some ideas for that in FADE, too... but probably not to the extent that you have.
Oh yea, I understand that, as I do alot of switches like this.

I think at the development phase of Tales, I was making monsters, and the first time I did it, I was like 50 or 70 into it, and like "I reaaaally hate doing this for each party member, so I tried to figure out how to make stuff so I could copy-paste as much as possible without changing stuff.

I basically have three "types" of physical immunity, which have battle animation messages pop up. And one type of magic immunity.

Magic Block same as yours. However, because my characters have sort of themed magic (life/death/etc) some monsters are selectively immune to death magic or life magic.
Physical Block the basic one. This is usually monsters where you attack and the attack does nothing (think ghosts). Generally, having astral weapons overcomes this (or just hit them with spells)
Miss is for flying or swimming monsters. You need to be floating to hit enemies like this.
Elemental Block basically requires you to have one of the elemental weapons to attack.

I wanted to have more stuff, but I can't think of anything. Still, it's cool that I was able to do this.
Yup, I also try to make stuff as copy-paste-friendly as possible, because I'm lazy, lol. It's still annoying every time I come up with a new skill idea, having to update all my battle encounters with the new code. Luckily I don't plan on adding a thousand different skills for my characters, and I'm already over halfway with what I want for them; about 10 skills per character - not counting Brand-equip skills and Item-taught skills.

Elemental block is interesting, but not sure if I'd like it in my game. I kind of prefer an all-or-nothing approach. Makes it easier on the player. Same reason why I don't work much with elemental weaknesses and resistances. If a monster doesn't show magic block above its head, your skills will have effect on them (unless it's burrowed underground :D) For this reason Rage's fire spells are still effective against the monsters inside the volcano - though, the chance to inflict Burn on them is severely lower than on non-fire monsters.
Elemental block frequently malfunctions in my game because I sometimes hit the enter button too many times and it attacks anyway (ah, wait, I found it, one of my characters was StunAll for the wrong character). Since these enemies aren't always truly immune to physical attacks this screws up so you're just as well.

It is all or nothing. If you don't have a fire sword or whatever, it doesn't allow you to attack. The problem is that I haven't a way to straight up block a magic type without an annoying amount of code (something along the lines of making all spells switch based or something). Which makes it sort of a pain in the butt, and I'm kinda debating whether to throw it out, but so far it stays. Anyway, immune takes care of the spell stuff. You use RPS+?

On the other hand, float enemies might be a good addition. You could have either certain (ranged) weapons hit them or wearing winged shoes.
By all-or-nothing I meant either all characters can attack them, or none can. How do you mean the enemies aren't always truly immune to physical attacks? Like, when you spam attack, a monster dies, and a character automatically attacks the next monster that should block, but doesn't because it was a re-directed hit?

I have no idea what RPS+ plus is, but please explain to me. :)

I don't have plans for a floating mechanic outside of one big boss battle that'll show up pretty late into the game (around the 80% completion mark). Spoiler: that boss is going to be freaking awesome. :D But yeah, regular attacks won't be able to harm it.
The idea of winged boots is interesting, I might actually include that to let one of the characters use basic attacks on it.
Oh. Well, this mostly has to do with the fact that characters have physical attacks with different weapons. And it's explained during battle that the character needs something to hit the target with.

It was a bug. Character 3 when they attacked an elemental immune, I found it was set to Character 1 StunAll. Fixed now, and it seems to run smoothly.

News bubble, huh? Bugmenot created it awhile back. It allows you to add stuff to attacks like the ability to be unreflectable.

??? You responded to something regarding RPS+ earlier.

author=Milennin
author=bugmenot
Fixed a bug with self-destructing enemies when using the RPS+ patch:
download RPS+
This is an interesting patch. The miss on skills that wouldn't increase any stats always bothered me, and I like the "immune" effect. I'll try this out some time.


Just make sure you've got dynrpg 0.30 or 0.40 whatever, the one Pepsi made. It should create a plugins folder. Download the RPS+ patch. Add to the attributes menu twelve new "elements" called %1 to %12. These basically go with the Immune effect, and add traits to attacks.

%1 (Row control, I think it ignores rows or something)
%2 (Piercing, it changes damage based on enemy defense. I think the more defense an enemy has the worse it is)
%3 (No Reflect skills)
%4 (Skills can be evaded. Put it on weapons to make them hit evading enemies)
%5 (Skip skill name)
%6 (Fast, speeds up ATB)
%7 (Slow, slows down ATB)
%8 (Delay, slows down enemy ATB)
%9-11 (turns switches on if skill used, hits, or misses in that order)
%12 (A is minimum damage, I set to 1, B if 0 is no maximum otherwise maximum damage up to B, negative damage and immunity applies)
Hm, must've been a while back, and I can't find it in my game files. Well, I guess I'll add it to my RTG_RT file now then since it looks cool and I could probably use it for a few things.

All this RPG Maker talk has brought me back to game making again after a long break. Been busy with other stuff and projects, but I feel like working on the next stage of my game now. :)
Cool! I want to see more stuff now, so glad you're interested. I'm updating Tales myself after a long hiatus, trying to redo chapter 3.
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