The undead are among us,
at dawn they shrink back to their silken beds.
They dance by night
and drink the blood
of a child's broken neck.
The Curse of Cpt. Lovele...
Nautical-themed cephalopod-pirate-based action-shmup.


Some pointless meandering about gamers (AKA: Meet your audience)

Okay, caveat.. For now I'm not talking about RPGMAKER users specifically; because that is a WHOLE 'NOTHER BAG O' BEES. So with that said, time for some aimless meandering.

I was thinking about just who "we" (taking the actual or hypothetical stance of "maker of games") make games for but more specifically who those people, or type of people, are exactly - As in: "What they're like"

Okay, backing up a little further...

My train of thought went like this:

author=My mind, a few minutes ago.
"When building games you should probably have 'the player' in mind and try to approach things from a 'player oriented perspective' rather than a 'game developer perspective', sure, that makes sense...

*self satisfaction at arriving at a logically sound and ethically pleasing design philosophy*

After all, I don't want to just make games whose target audience is "other people who make games"... I need to work more on leaning how to appeal to people who don't think about games as makers of them but as players.

(and this is something I would usually unthinkingly agree with because it just makes sense when read alone)



"The player" is, at least by semantic necessity alone, going to be a gamer.

Have you ever spoke to a gamer?!

You are a gamer, and so are all the professional game developers.
(actually tbqh I'm barely a gamer any more :/)

I mean.. Have you looked at a forum that discusses commercial games? It's pretty much exactly the same, every gamer and his dog is a part-time wannabe game developer at least outside of casual and 'social' gaming.

They talk about, criticize and praise stuff like graphics, music, level design, puzzle design, mechanics and gameplay... In fact that is the CORE of their focus - and they approach it from a "how it should have been done" position which is almost exactly the same as a developer, who would approach from a "how should I go about doing this?" position...

And... With both sides of the fence taking the same position on games, just where is there room for actual content in this equation and just who out there could be said to be viewing it as such, as in, from the positon of the hypothesized "player"? because it's certainly not "gamers"

...and with that it hit me like the giant block of obvious. I have been a fan of the notion: "players don't give a shit about game dev stuff (and in RPGMAKER-specific terms, this is still absolutely true unless you only want to impress other rpgmaker users, this is why I caveat'd that earlier on), so get that stuff out of your mind and focus on what ends up player-side" but when you look at the target audience for games, ie: "gamers" it turns out they erm.. do care about that stuff, probably more than they "should", whatever that means.

See most gamers are nerds and are really into "games" as a whole "thing" (rather than just "enjoying playing games") In the same way that our rpgmaker/game making hobby extends beyond "I use a program called rpgmaker as a hobby sometimes" - as evidenced by the fact this community exists and that people invest a lot of time and energy in their projects, make teams, collabs, forum-based activities, events, friends even.

Gamers are, obviously, very literate in the medium of games and as a result are nothing like the cow-eyed hypothetical cipher "the player" that all of this "intending things for" is intended for. Also, let's face it, if you're an indie developer (of any caliber) your audience is more likely to be nerd gamers than casual gamers (unless you're aiming for the mobile/social gaming market). IE: people who will pick everything apart in ways that sometimes even you may not have imagined. In other words, they are both highly articulate in the language of games (imo: usually positive) and also very conditioned by or involved in the culture of gaming (can be both positive and negative).

So.. Now to bring the RM thing in.

I totally agree with the notion "Nobody outside of the RM community gives a shit about x-thing-that-is-only-impressive-in-the-context-of-rpgmaker" but this is a microcosm of a larger thing because you could just as easily say "non-gamers don't give a shit how impressive/good your game's graphics/sound/music/storyline/characters/anything is" which is an obvious thing to say but it brings to light that making a game, if you audience is "gamers" (and logically speaking, why would you make a game for non-gamers?), is pandering to "gamer expectations".

I mean, like I said, it would be a silly idea to approach game making from a "not making the game for gamers" position... (and it would be a great excuse to devolve into "it's not WRONG! it's just MY STYLE!" attitudes)

But would it really be that silly? ~(+_+ ~)

As was pointed out by the recent topic about gay characters in games, people are multidimensional and not flat characters or cardboard cutouts.. So when you go to play a game, do you really just want the game to be treating you as "a gamer" and to only appeal to that part of your personality? I mean, we're other things than just gamers, right? So howcome most game-design "best practices" focus a lot on appealing to gamers as just that and nothing else? I imagine that, with a few exceptions, trying this in the real industry would be financial suicide but in the amateur sphere we don't have that much to lose... so...

Howcome our standards of what makes an amateur game "good" consist of three things:
1) Emulation of professional (aka: made in large part to make money) games in as many ways as possible, as much as possible.
2) Half-hearted attempts to subvert conventions of professional games to be edgy whilst still holding on to them (Do the opposite for the sake of being different rather than for more relevant or "deeper" reasons).
3) Affirmation of personal biases about how we think games should be. (yeah, kinda hard to avoid that one!)

(this doesn't mean that I'm saying "if your game in any way emulates professional games that is a bad thing!" or *apply to the other two points* but rather that I'm asking why the standard of what are considered VALID design choices or, "GOOD GAM MAK YO" is based on these three things)

yeah. I said a bunch of stuff there that probably didn't make much sense.

Thoughts? :>

Just an idea - Dev Spotlight Interviews

This is just an idea I'm throwing out there to stimulate discussion. Inspired by SNEWS, Interview articles here on RMN and Shinan/Kentona's podcasts from way back.

When a game is considered for the new "development spotlight" front-page feature on here maybe somebody/some of us can "interview" the developers and ask the pertinent and relevant questions that might naturally be asked (after all, there's a reason it's up for dev spotlight, right? That's gotta raise some questions about the dev, the dev process, inspirtions, design choices, planned features, mechanics etc) and that content can be made into a nice long blog-post. Almost like a nicely-fromatted review but it would be a preview with exposition from the creator in an interview format rather than a review of game from a player.

Think old-school game magazine interview of the developers of an upcoming title.

The interview blog post would contain all the relevant content that would constitute what we now have linked from the "development spotlight" link on the front page and would integrated into the blog post/interview. So there would be video clips, screenshots, any other content etc. interspersed with the interview text and the front page "Development Spotlight" link would link to that blog post that would be posted on the relevant game-page's blog.

Also I guess that could maybe be extended to community spotlight too if people wanted to do that. Except I guess it would have to take article format rather than a blog post.

Anyway that's just an idea. What does everyone think? I think it'd be nicer than just linking to the game page. This would both link to the game page and provide some nice exposition, content and information "from the horse's mouth".

Did you want to make an RPG/Game? Be honest!

(Please press "back" on your browser to avoid reading more aimless mental masturbation about creativity and rpg maker.)

Also I'll say from the outset that "you" is not anyone personally. It refers to all of us to some degree or another at some point in our lives as amateur game developers. It's just easier to say "you" when speaking in the hypothetical. Also I have been inspired by reading Mellytan's writing to talk about... Things.

So... for some reason you've landed yourself in the position of slaving away over a hot event editor and you're working on the 50 hour rpg epic with magic and spikey haired teenage protagonists and a cast of implausibly pretty people of every conceivable gender (or maybe not, but whatever). It's RPG maker right, isn't that what it's for?

I dunno, is it? I'm going to avoid value judgements as much as I can here though. What I was getting at is this:

Did you stumble across rpg maker and think "I'd like a piece of that action" and start planning an rpg because rpg maker is rpg maker or did you think to yourself "wow I'd love to make an rpg, I even already have an idea I'd love to realise" and search for "rpg maker"?

Something doesn't sit right with me when I consider the former option. Essentially in that situation you set out to contrive something that fits the mold of the tool you have at your disposal. If you had an idea for a cool rpg you wanted to make beforehand then more power to you (although I'd probably say that wanting to make a thinly veiled ff6 clone doesn't count). However I somehow don't think most of us come to rm that way. I know I didn't and I think this may be the single biggest root cause of developer burnout and rm vapourware. In order to make a game within that model you have to contrive every single aspect in order to make it work and you soon realise there's not much inherent motivation to even bother continuing to make the game once you get past he novelty factor (waheeey, I'm making a game!). Did you even want to make an rpg before you found rpg maker? Really?

I once read about an article (yes, read about an article) called something along the lines of "the immense relief of quitting golf" which, in a nutshell, was about a dude who quit playing golf as a hobby and how he wished he did it years ago because the hobby did nothing but introduce a set of arbitrary self-imposed concerns, venacular, standards to adhere to and additional pretense into his life and stress him out and how something he was meant to be doing "for fun" caused him nothing but strife his entire golfing life (see also: the things you want most in life are most likely the things that will end up killing you, metaphorically speaking).

Now I'm not saying that everyone should quit :> I'm just trying to stimulate discussion (also I'm stuck with my game right now and needed a distraction and to ramble and irc is dead) and get down to the nature of what makes a good game and what makes a crappy derivative market-stall-quality FF knock-off (people who make full-on FF fangames/remakes/demakes/whatever are excused from that judgement simply by virtue of their sheer honesty) So I'm positing that a good game is a good game before it even exists and that a bad game is a bad game before it even exists (or is inevitably cancelled) due to the motivations, or lack thereof, that underlie its conception and how those motivations will be tangible in the player experience. Making a game for the sake of making a game, although it may be a starting point for bigger and better ideas that actually have some genuine inherent motivating force and vision behind their production, doesn't seem, to me at least, to be a motivation that can be relied upon as a functional imperative if you're concerned with making something that:

a) You actually will be able to give a shit about in a few weeks/months/years time.
b) Is genuinely a rewarding experience in-of-itself to make (not for the imagined or real accolades you will recieve that prompt you to release a demo as soon as you have enough content to pass the project off as worthy of playing. OR just to be like "LOOK HOW COOL I AM!" which is a cheap high that wears off pretty quickly or because you've invested so much time and energy into your game that you just can't bring yourself to let it go, leading to either a seemingly-unending grind of grim determination or stagnation and eventual abandonment of the project and maybe even turning-in your amateur game maker's gun and badge.)
c) Won't be a highly-derivative, transparent and contrived game.
d) You can be genuinely proud of.
e) Is fresh, original and generously gives to the player rather than simply taking away their time and trading it for an experience of little value where the only thing that benefits at all is the game developer's ego. (this one is really subjective and will vary from person to person, obviously. But I'm still listing it because I think that games made with some intrinsic motivation are at least more likely to provide a mentally and emotionally "nourishing" experience than those made on a foundation of contrivance and bare-faced derivation).

I, for one, honestly don't care much about dark elves, iron swords in the item shop, magical villages and elemental crystals which is why I don't make games about those things and I find it hard to believe that every single person who gets into this actually genuinely gives a shit about those tired premises either (feel free to exchange with tropes and cliches from the genre of your choice). They just "want in" on the action.

So, long-ass ramble about nothing much, but what do you guys think? Do you have any similar experiences or insights about it? Do you like turtles? Am I your bro and is this a cool story? Any good image macros lately?

What are YOU in this for?

Apologies if a thread like this already exists.

But come on, own up. What are YOU in this for? If you've been around here for at least a little while (or longer) you'll have no doubt learned a fair bit and I'm talking about more than just switches and variables. I mean this whole deal.

Game making, RPG Making, the community. All of it.

Why do you do it? I'd be interested in personal stories/reasons behind your interest in this hobby and more than just that, why it's taken this route in particular and why you do things the way you do. That's the interesting stuff.


I got back into this after a long break from rpgmaker (because I thought it was fucking lame and pointless to be frank. I dropped RM at around 14 without any knowledge of a community or anything. I picked it up again very briefly at 16 before dropping it again along with most other nerdy things to have an actual non-nerd social life for a few years) I picked it back up around 21, which is when I bothered to look into the communities that exist, finding this place. I'd had ideas for games that could be made in rpgmaker many times over the years and decided to see what was cracking. Once I found rmn and saw what I then thought was RIDICULOUSLY AWESOME stuff being made with it (compared to what I'd thought possible as a kid with no knowledge of a community) I got involved and my standards swiftly shifted in regards to what I should expect from my own projects.

When I was 13/14 I had a couple of irl rm user friends. We used to sometimes say "Nobody has ever finished making an rpgmaker game" - We actually believed this and I did pretty much until I found this place. The shock at being proven wrong so tremendously is part of why I got enamored with this whole thing. Seeing people actually making entertaining full-length games, seeing the crazy workarounds to push and break engine limitations, the meticulous detail, the painstaking design choices, the creativity, seeing the at-times-borderline-ridiculous seriousness with which people take their projects (and sadly the frankly ridiculous community drama, too). It was a whole other world and I wanted in.

(Part of me thinks it's a bit of a raw deal though, that said - you only get out of a community what you put in, obviously.)

These days I see rpgmaker and the community as a centralizing factor when it comes to my creative pursuits. It gives me a place to create context for my otherwise pointless creative impulses. If I want to make a song for no good reason I find it hard to convince myself to follow it up, whereas if I wanna make a song and I have a game to make that song for - it provides context and some leverage, focusing the whole endeavor toward a purpose. Same goes with the impulse to make graphics and such too. Also on the flipside it helps fuel my creativity because it legitimizes otherwise pointless trains of thought and directs my ambling mind - I probably come up with hundreds of game-related or at least game-applicable ideas a week.

That was very vague, I know. Hope that made sense.

Of course the not-so-glamourous other side of my answer would be simply... This gives me something to do with my time and a place with people who have similar interests to talk to.

Discuss? Share? :>

Unsupported PNG file error - not a graphics problem

So ever since trying to replace a system set I now get the message "Unsupported PNG type" or "file" (can't remember which). However this is not due to there actually being an unsupported .png file there. Firstly because I got the colour depth right to begin with and that would have snagged upon import. I've tried renaming the file etc. I've made multiple versions.

ALSO I can't even use any of the system sets, including the RTP ones, anymore without it giving the same error message upon startup or test play. The game seems to be buggered basically. Does anyone have any idea how to fix this? Or an easy way around it?

This is RM2k3, by the way.

Also somehow this problem reappears when attempting to copy the project over to a new project.

Also have tried using Cherry's RM Ultimate 2009.

This is really shitty, anyone have a clue?

What the hell did you/do you wanna be?

Thought I'd throw this out there because it's something I've always struggled with and still do. Knowing what I want to do with my life and making it happen.

I know a few people on here probably already have or are on their way to having the paid societal role they want. Hopefully there are others here too who aren't really sure or have struggled with it (so I don't feel alone haha).

Long rambling self-indulgence here:
I've always been very unsure of what I want to do with myself, in the last two years of high school (where we can choose what subjects we study, for the most part) I chose to study art, graphic products & design, English literature & English language, media studies, double science (like science but double the classes/qualification) maths (mandatory), statistics (elective, but guaranteed pass) and ICT (computer shit, also mandatory).

Later I went to college to study Art and then dropped out (college here isn't like college in the US or whatever. College here is post-16 (because we finish mandatory education at 16) education for pre-degree study or for job related training.) Eventually I ended up on the dole for a while and then got a minimum wage job. A year later I went back to study Music Technology (which I finished) whilst also working.

Have considered going to university but have no idea what I'd even want to study or specialize in. Also am poor.

I've wanted to be a musician, a singer/vocalist (have been in bands, even took some vocal training), wanted to be a writer, wanted to be a lot of things but never really believed I a) could actually do it b) would be interested in the subject beyond learning about it or c) actually be able to make a living out of it.

So yeah, a total change of course in education over the years. Still no idea what I want to do with myself, really.

Anyway, please feel free to respond with what you've wanted to be in the past, what you do want to be, what you've managed to do in perusing that field. Failed endeavors, how you came to know what you wanted to be and of course - if you achieved your goals.

I'd be especially interested in hearing from people who chose something off-the-grid, so to speak (just decided to take something up as a trade, like art or music) and actually ended up making progress in that field to the extent that they can call themselves "an artist" or "a musician".


This is an annoying request to make.

But I don't suppose anybody has the FULL collection of Theodore resources for RM2K/3?

Or knows where I could find all of them together like you can with the REFMAP stuff.

Somebody posted a download link somewhere on here before but that link's now expired/been removed.

Would be a great help!

Edit, also, just out of interest.. Were there ever any Theo resources for VX?

Arrange by Size...

...Would be the most useful and awesome addition to RMN's locker functionality. (filesize, I should say)

Especially when it comes time to clear the buggers out.

Chrome gave me this worrying message when navigating rmn.

author=Google Chrome
Warning: Something's Not Right Here! contains content from, a site known to distribute malware. Your computer might catch a virus if you visit this site.
Google has found malicious software may be installed onto your computer if you proceed. If you've visited this site in the past or you trust this site, it's possible that it has just recently been compromised by a hacker. You should not proceed, and perhaps try again tomorrow or go somewhere else.
We have already notified that we found malware on the site. For more about the problems found on, visit the Google Safe Browsing diagnostic page.

If you understand that visiting this site may harm your computer, proceed anyway.

Specifically when trying to view the main game-page for "Valkyrie Stories - Escallion Rising"

edit... Can this not degenerate into a debate about which browser is best. Pretty please?

Filter notifications by new author post/not.

The ability to filter notices by whether they're a new post by the developer(s) of a game or it's just the inevitable 6 page shit-storm from everyone else that follows that post... Would be great. Basically the ability to filter non-author updates out of the notifications list, because unless it's a comment being made on something old, the chance is I'm gonna read the comments anyway (and we all know that ,because of notifications, most commenting happens within hours of a new post anyway).

If Neok posts a new blog.. I know that by the time I wake up/log in there's gonna be about 20 comments clogging up by notices, which is pretty whack.

Even better (but just dreaming here) would be a nested notifications of some sort (so, say if somebody else whose game I'm subscribed to posts a new image.. I get one notification saying "X Has posted a new image on Blah" and then an expandable list of "y commented on this post" or simply a link next to the notification with the number of comments which takes me to the newest comment when I click it). But I don't know exactly how that'd be implemented.

If any of this *was* done there should probably be an option left in to allow submissions to be viewed as they are now. This should probably be a configurable option in the user CP too.

EDIT: I should add that notification SORTING would ideally be added to that system.. SO I can rack up my notifications by either date added, or game, or post-type (images, blogs, reviews etc).

:) *hides from kentona*
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