The Eroticism of Challenge

There are loads of easy games that I like, some of which are personal favorites, but overall I consider challenge to be an important component in games. It's really hard to get right in RPGs because avatar power is so variable. I've thought about it considerably, but haven't really come to a concrete conclusion. I think a good strategy is to design around player knowledge, but you run the risk of Kaizo Mario or I Wanna Be the Guy.


Orb rush this weekend. Do the other stuff soon, I guess.

How to navigate a hex grid with the keyboard?

Typically, games with d-pad controls that also use a hex grid are older turn-based strategy games. They use the same cursor you'd expect from a mouse, except it's controlled by the d-pad. I can't think of any games where entity control is direct, and my initial thought is that it's a bad idea and you should not do that.

Looking at your profile, I assume this is for your MinST project. Is there any reason you can't just use mouse controls? Are you porting it to an unusual platform?


Leviathan is really easy. Bahamut is straightforward but hits very hard, so just bring multiple forms of healing--I went with two drain abilities and Curaja, and still cut it close a few times (mostly because Steal HP was so weak with an off-record dagger).


I only counted them as a single unique. If I split them then I have 80 5* items.

From Archades to Crescent ~ Town Design for the Solo Dev

Fuck me.


Fine. You win. I'm gonna go hang myself.

You do you, Craze. You make your game as you see fit. Sometimes disregarding the three-tile rule and "academia" (there's a massive difference between memorizing something and actually utilizing it; any professor will tell you this) might allow you to create your own style.

Paint by numbers. No matter what you do in RPG Maker, 90% of the work is done for you. Stop shitting on others because you're absolutely no better.

I was never here.

Still no actionable information contained in this post. Corfaisus, I don't think you even know what makes a town good and this is why you can't provide anything other than "try harder."


I don't think it's a lack of air damage that makes Garuda a problem. It's that he has the potential to hit you four times for like 2.5k damage before anybody acts, and Tornado Strike isn't going to do anything about that. Once you get through your initial rotation it's an easy fight. Tornado Strike seems neat, though. I had Bartz use it during one of the Abyss bosses this morning.

Teleport XIV is WHT. As a rule of thumb, unless it summons Bahamut or some other esper in the animation, it's probably a WHT limit break if it's a white mage character.

Also, you've got a lot of uniques and I was jealous until I considered how many gems that might cost.

Regarding FF7 off-banner items... In spite of FF7 being one of my strongest records, I've only pulled on an FF7 banner once, back when I got Crystal Glove. Aurora Rod was a daily draw, Barret's gun was off-banner, Yoshiyuki was from the festival, and Buster Sword my second lucky draw.

I was getting all excited to pull tonight, but then remembered that the dope banner is the second one... so I await Thursday.

I sorted my inventory by augment rank and counted the pages (40 per page). I have 77 natural 5* or better items, so about twice as many generics/shareds as uniques.

From Archades to Crescent ~ Town Design for the Solo Dev

Red, you're right and now I feel silly -- but only a little, because there ARE all the houses and stuff that just kinda felt "there" imo. Even the part with the big skeleton on the bridge that had a lot to do with the neighboring town felt pretty blah to me. The only town areas that really stuck with me from CT are the starving, failing biodome, and the millenial fair (because ofc).

If anything, what Chrono Trigger proves is that if towns aren't central to your design, then you should minimize a player's interaction with them, which is what Chrono Trigger does.

From Archades to Crescent ~ Town Design for the Solo Dev

Look back. Do some reading. Come back and tell me that again.

Take your snipe and shove it, Jude, or at the very least try harder. Taking pot shots at one's adulthood is soooo 2007.

Apparently I missed this due to page-break. Your reply makes it evident that not only are you childish in behavior, but childish in comprehension too. The reason LouisCyphre is attacking you isn't because you're using RTP--that is merely the ammunition. He's attacking you because you are behaving childishly, and highlighted it with the RTP hypocrisy.

From Archades to Crescent ~ Town Design for the Solo Dev

The only way it's going to become more actionable or insightful is if I'm already in your game. I don't know your game, I can't tell you how to make it. What works for your game doesn't work for every game.

Nah, you don't need a specific reference to talk about design principles--at least I don't, and neither do people much savvier than I am.

Let's talk about an aspect of layout, which is supposed to be one of your specialties, which I'll refer to as Centrality.

The centrality of a place can be evaluated by its connectivity with other trafficked places. In other words, you want to think about your town's layout in clusters, and then to plot the most important cluster central to the other clusters--this doesn't necessarily mean the geographic center of the town, but the traversable center where all paths coalesce, which is most often the geographic center or the town entrance. Intuitively, this means the item shop is in proximity to the weapon shop, which is in proximity to armor shop. This is intuitive to you because shopping districts exist in all RPGs and in real cities too. This improves the player's experience in a town because a frequent reason for a player returning to a town is to restock items and upgrade their gear. By centralizing this function, a player's time isn't wasted by having to trek from one corner of the map to the other.

However, this extends beyond shopping. If an NPC is useful for scenario advancement, it is beneficial for that NPC to also have high centrality to improve their discoverability. This is the reason you often find important NPCs standing near the inn, or prostitutes by airport motels. This helps with a game's pacing, but also cultivates and then rewards player expectations--I can find things where I think I can find them based on intuition and previous experience.

Ideally, to get the most out of both Centrality and Explorability, your centralized NPCs are not critical for scenario advancement, but instead direct players to the more hidden fringes of the map, where the critical NPC resides. This rewards a player's intuition, but also the player who wants to discover the critical path independently. This is a principle that even the first Dragon Quest understands. One of the most centralized NPCs the town of Rimuldar tells you that somewhere in town is a hard-to-find Magic Key shop, a part of the scenario's critical path.

This is just an obvious example, but it's not hard to look at design through a more academic lense without having a specific game to review.