Game Direction... (11)

1 Name: Anonymous Gamer : 2009-04-30 15:16 ID:yO9lRkki

Hey gang, I've been making a roguelike from scratch for a little while, but from this point on, I'm not sure whch direction to take...

My ORIGINAL idea was to make a FF based roguelike, with a random plot, where you had to defeat the local baddie to progress further accross the map. But, slowly that gave way to a more fun plan, where each area of the map would have a different theme of game. like, Final Fantasy, Mario, Kirby, etc etc... It would still have a FF like battle system (instead of DnD like) with the last bosses having fucktons of HP, and mean powers like Marlboro's bad breath, but lots of other stuff mixed in for some retro fun.

I'm almost done, really, but when I went to start the Magic System, I got a little confused... How much regular roguelike fare to I want to include? Do I want to have to Identify Items? Do I really need netHack-like potions, scrolls, and wands? How far can I stray from the norm and still consider the game a roguelike?

I came up with some scenarios, and wanted some opinions on which would be the most fun.

A: The player won't learn any spells. there are no other classes or races. The player has some extra "artifact" equip zones where he can equip items like "Fire Flower" or "Cure Materia" to use the effect from those games.
B: I keep a more FF style of magic and have different classes. [Roguelike classes, FF classes, or various game classes?] Magic can be bought or learned from a spell book, like fire, cure, and raise. Other Items, like Fire Flower, would be either one use only, or like staves in that they have a few charges of use. A Star would bestow temporary invincibility.

Teammates: 2 teammates
A: They are out of your control, have personalities according to their game, have their own items and skills, and can only be directed generally like "follow me", or "Conserve magic".
B: Something like FF12 where you have a set of gambits you can set for your team mates. Also, you get to pick their items.

A: Only items and weapons from a particular game show up in it's region. Each region has a few items of simmilar purpose (like, mushroom, potion, maxim heart...) No blessed or cursed statuses, no identification.
B: Each region has a few unique game items, but there are also mostly generic roguelike items thrown in. Potions, scrolls, staves, books. They have BUC statuses, start unidentified, have multiple uses (Holy water can hurt undead, or bless items) for a more authentic (but done to death) rogue feel.

Please help - what's more fun?

2 Name: Anonymous Gamer : 2009-04-30 15:55 ID:Jk0g1UjJ

>How far can I stray from the norm and still consider the game a roguelike?

As much as you want. What makes a good "-like" game and not just yet another boring copy is its originality factor. As in why in some aspects, Quake as a Doom-like succeeded and Half-Life as a Quake-like succeeded.

You have ideas, put them to use, and don't feel shackled down because your starting point was to make a "roguelike" game. Then playtest a lot, you'll see if your ideas work on the field with players.

3 Name: Anonymous Gamer : 2009-04-30 19:01 ID:yO9lRkki

Yeah, you're right. A lot of the time, While trying to figure out the further direction of the game, I was saying to myself "Is it okay if I don't do this, or do this instead of that?" But it's fine no matter what I pick.

Other people I asked seemed to like My Gambit idea, and my Artifact idea. I think I'll almost totally get rid of all standard items, and focus entirely on in-game items. A lot of them will have simmilar effects, mind you, but it's still a matter of flavour.

I'm still unsure about classes though. I mean, if I put classes in, then they have to be different. One of the ways to make them different is skills and magic progression, but if I have equippable artifacts with spell-like effects, that kinda defeats the purpose, and if I have purchasable spells, it renders the artifacts useless. And what kinds of classes to have if I do?

4 Name: Anonymous Gamer : 2009-04-30 19:11 ID:yO9lRkki

It really is a lot simpler to go the I.V.A.N. route, and not have different classes at all

5 Name: (COMMENT FIELD TOO LONG) : 2009-05-01 11:57 ID:O2EnfBWd

You have looked into Chocobo's Dungeon for Wii/DS, right? That'd be something to consider if you haven't. As >>2 said, going a different route is always something to consider.

I consider myself an amateur game designer, since I have no real experience whatsoever other than pages upon pages in notepad. None of my ideas are flat out original, but I always take other games into account and put elements of them in there to spice up the original formula. As a result, some game foundations are made much more expansive (in theory) or better. The most interesting is to take things from games that are not even in the same genre, however, it is much harder to manage. When successful though (again, in theory), you can really make something alot more enjoyable as a result, like Chocobo Dungeon (Class changes in my Roguelike? More interesting than you think. Especially since there are some better for some situations than others.). The most important factor is always enjoyment. What's fun for the player, or even what you think might be fun that you'd wish some developer would do. By no means does this mean you have to make something casual, but there's nothing wrong with a bit of streamlining either. Advance Wars did this with Days of Ruin and the result was successful. However, that's something for another post.

I'll get started on my analysis in the next posts I submit.

6 Name: (COMMENT FIELD TOO LONG) : 2009-05-01 11:57 ID:O2EnfBWd

Let's see here though.
A: By this, do you mean slots or actual tiles where you get equipped with stuff, even temporarily? The latter might be interesting within reason. Super Mario Galaxy had something like that where there were zones to powerup, and they'd be infinite uses, but only active for a certain while. Some would be temporary, but others would last until you were hit or got into a certain area you shouldn't (such as water nullifying bee mario). Depending on if you use a random system or predetermined dungeons could effect this, since I'm not sure how you're going with that. However you meant it, it's an idea to keep in mind like others have said.
B: Nothing wrong with this, but it just depends on how easy a time you want the player to have. Would classes level up, and when? In addition, how good would items be? This goes back to that Chocobo Dungeon Wii game I was talking about. I'm not really asking questions in this part, so much as I'm just trying to bounce off stuff to consider.

Teammates: 2 teammates
A: I can't think of any roguelikes that have worked like this before, and I think it would be pretty interesting. I've played Shiren the Wanderer some, and the only ally I managed to get was a bumbling doofus in accordance with his personality. If I actually could steer him, it would have been all for the better. I've played pokemon dungeon before too, and that worked a bit better, but you still technically more or less had complete control of your member other than the fact that he or she followed you everywhere. However, the different types and abilities were cool too and created an interesting kind of cover system when one of you was weak against something but the other wasn't. I like the idea of orders though. Even though it's a bit Tales of and Dragon Quest IV, one of the interesting things said about why they went that route in the original on the NES/FC was "because they had their own personalities" as said straight from those who worked on it. They COULD have given the player complete control like they did in the remakes and II and III, but because they did what they did, it makes me think a bit differently about IV after I played the original. I think the big factor here is how much character you'll give the party members.
B: I've never played 12, so I don't know how gambits work, but I've heard their really easy to exploit and make you have a really easy time. As for picking their items, I'm not quite sure how that works either.

A: I've tossed this idea around a bit in my own plans, but I've never given it much thought of fruition. It'd be great to see this done, but one thing I wonder is whether or not there will be "set" items in disguise (essentially two or more items have the same effect (if not the same level of effect as well), but just look different). Earthbound/Mother series TRIED to do this, but due to teleportation and revisiting, along with storage, most players likely just ended up buying the best stuff from certain places and saving for later and revisiting (if they could) when they ran out. If you don't have a storage system or anyway to return to get "the best" items (that is, if some places have better items than others), then it is definitely something to consider and I highly encourage you to consider this, since it's something I've wanted to see done right.
B: I think this might just be extra work and take away from the exotic feel of having only specific items in specific places. I hate identification and I think it's stupid unless relevant to a plot (like the rusted sword from Final Fantasy Adventure), which is why I dislike that aspect of roguelikes and most games that use it. If you're going to stray from the norm, the items are definitely the one place you need to do it, if only for potentially interesting results.

7 Name: (COMMENT FIELD TOO LONG) : 2009-05-01 11:58 ID:O2EnfBWd

As for the I.V.A.N. route, I don't know much about that game as I've never played it.

I'm not normally this friendly to "wannabe game designers", since their projects are mostly bullshit, ripoffs, pretentious, or not even well thought out, but you seem like you've got your head on straight and your stuff together (mostly) and you're actually looking for actual input instead of "HAY GUIZE HOW I MAEK GAEM?1", which I generally saw from shitholes like 4chan's /v/ (ugh, I don't even want to think about that place). You and I seem to think on similar lines, although I don't ask for help, because I usually know what I want to do, and if I don't I just consider what I like and what I want to see done. Some people might see that as a bit cocky, but honestly, I'm not much of a "help asker" in anything, personal or professional, usually because I work best alone. I'm not afraid of asking for help though when I really need it, and I think that's pretty much what you're doing here, mostly because you seem to want to make something that alot of people will enjoy, which is my foundation fundamental in my entertainment philosophy, and I respect that. So, good job, >>1-san.

DEFINITELY keep with the multiple world theme. Especially if you manage to have music from different games. This is what the VIP Mario hacks do to an extent and I think it's pretty successful. Just don't go trying to sell this game unless you want some of them FBI agents a-knockin' at your door.

8 Name: Anonymous Gamer : 2009-05-01 15:07 ID:ISPxlA+e

Hahaha, no, this would definately be a free game. I just wanted to create something that everyone can enjoy (especially me!). Now that I've read all these comments, I can't wait to crack open Eclipse and get cracking on this.

I know this is an ambitious project, and I also know how frustrating it is running into "HOW DOES I MAEK GAYM" folks - to be honest, I didn't want to talk about it at all until it was done, but nobody else I know is a big gamer or knows much about rogues, so I thought the best people to ask was the internet. (I think I was driving a friend of mine at work off the wall with my flip-flopping ideas) So, thanks for the input!

If people are curious, I've decided. I may have classes, but they will mostly differ on stats and possibly even on how many artifacts they can equip. Artifacts will probably be more effective based on certain stats - kind of like phantom brave's skills. Even if it turns out to be not so fun, it's easy as pie to change later.

As for teammates, I think I will go for the gambit system. Basically, it allows the player to set a characters AI for me. If I don't like it, and think it makes the game too easy, I can easily retrofit it so that each npc has a set system of gambits I create. Also, I always find "Pets" and other summons so annoying because they're always getting in the way. This way, there's no chance a npc will use up items you've given it to hold, for example.

Finally, on Items, I think I'll totally not have the standard roguelike fare. No BUC statuses (although I probably will have cursed weapons with negative and positive effects) and virtually no Identification. As for your ideas on Item progression, it did give me something to think about...

Thanks for everyone's ideas... Now that I finally have a good idea of where to go from here, I'm really excited.

9 Name: gbone : 2009-05-01 15:24 ID:9Uf3Xff/

Seeing "lol I wants to include characters from all my favorite games" in an RPG is usually a huge red flag for me. Often it is indicative of a very poorly thought out game.

"Sonic amd mairo team up to fight sefiroth and ganondorf in kirby's dreamland lol!!1". Ugh.

However, this looks promising and well thought out. I like the idea of having equipable spells (over learning them) and having a single class.

I also prefer the AI-controlled allies over Gambit system, mostly because I've never played FFXII and have no idea what it is.

And, lastly, only items from a particular region sounds better than generic roguelike items.

10 Name: General Butt : 2009-05-01 15:39 ID:Heaven

Dammit, gbone, FFXII rocks, and you suck for not playing it, even when I BOUGHT IT FOR YOU.

11 Name: gbone : 2009-05-01 15:43 ID:9Uf3Xff/

I'm old. I used to be "with it", but then they changed what "it" was. Now what I'm with isn't "it" anymore, and what is "it" is new and scary to me.

Sprites > Polygons 4ver!

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