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Author Topic: A Mana series retrospective.  (Read 1205 times)
Hathen
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« Reply #60 on: October 28, 2014, 12:32:18 AM »

I see the appeal of making it so you have to draw your own maps since that adds to the adventure feel of the game, but in those cases I think they should be like the later Etrian Odyssey entries and have an option.

I also definitely agree with liking maze-like dungeons moreso than "hallways and rooms" dungeons, unless it makes sense for it not to be (anything man-made basically). If it's a cave or something I don't think it should be easy to navigate.

The only case I can think of where I really hate maze-like dungeons is Phantasy Star 2 where they did this stupid crap like making the foreground block holes in the ground you're supposed to drop down.
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Aeolus
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« Reply #61 on: October 28, 2014, 01:26:25 AM »

I see the appeal of making it so you have to draw your own maps since that adds to the adventure feel of the game, but in those cases I think they should be like the later Etrian Odyssey entries and have an option.

I also definitely agree with liking maze-like dungeons moreso than "hallways and rooms" dungeons, unless it makes sense for it not to be (anything man-made basically). If it's a cave or something I don't think it should be easy to navigate.

The only case I can think of where I really hate maze-like dungeons is Phantasy Star 2 where they did this stupid crap like making the foreground block holes in the ground you're supposed to drop down.

Unfortunately, part of why I don't really care for SD3 all that much is because it ended up going the "hallways and rooms" dungeon design the entire game. Granted, the layout of those rooms were better than most variations of that design style in that, most of the time, it actually had a layout (whereas most of these types of "hallways and rooms" style games are even lucky to have their rooms laid out to form some kind of shape on the map, the worst examples being anything with procedurally built dungeons; at that point the developers are basically too cheap to bother hiring a level designer, or knows what a good one looks like; IMO, any level designer that suggests going procedural as anything more than a single dungeon gimmick should be fired on the spot).
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Damacon
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« Reply #62 on: October 28, 2014, 02:21:57 AM »

I hear you that is why I have been so disappointed with a lot of the jrpgs lately like ArNosurge  why put so much effort to have a ton of character dialogue if you are just going to waste all that effort by putting no thought into areas and gameplay. I was also pretty sad with Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment they made a huge world but then they  used the same looking areas over and over again just in different semi maze patterns. This sight also lied to me by telling me the combat system was complex and rewarding but all the different weapons had basically the same skills the animation just looked different. Also all the other non weapon skills you got were just buffs/debuffs most doing pretty much the same thing and you could only use 8 max but they also shared your same hot buttons as items/weapon skills.

 On a good note I did actually enjoy Natural Doctrine it was kind of short but on lethal it was a somewhat challenging tactics game I must of died for like a hour straight on the last boss trying to keep everyone alive lol.
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Tomara
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« Reply #63 on: October 28, 2014, 03:20:47 AM »

Quote
I hear you that is why I have been so disappointed with a lot of the jrpgs lately like ArNosurge  why put so much effort to have a ton of character dialogue if you are just going to waste all that effort by putting no thought into areas and gameplay.

It's a result of a thing called 'having a limited budget'. Implementing dialogue like that is a cheap. It's their way of providing lots of content despite having limited resources. The people these games are aimed at are used to playing text heavy games like visual novels and dating sims, so I think Gust figured these people won't mind of gameplay takes a backseat. That said, the battlesystem was pretty cool. It was one of the most fun ways of slaughtering enemy mobs I've ever encountered.
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Damacon
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« Reply #64 on: October 28, 2014, 09:54:45 AM »

 They really should of just made it a puzzle game or a tactics game if their budget was that low. Even though they put a ton of work into the character dialogue the actual main story plot of the game was pretty bland also. The combat wasn't bad but it also felt like a downgrade as the other Ar games did pretty much the same thing only with multiple characters with unique skills that didn't just have a different animation like this one.

 Trust me I understand a budget is a problem but it sounds like a excuse, I am playing Tears of Tiara 2 right now and the battles are the bare minimum graphic wise with fairly horrible map design. But so far I am highly impressed with the game the story is yes very visual novel like with beautiful art,sound and a highly compelling story that keeps me wanting more. The combat may look pretty bland but it is quite complex with new original ideas I have not seen in other tactics games.  Budget isn't everything just take a look at Square-Enix they have all the money in the world but they use their money to make games like FF 13 that don't even have a 10th of the charm as almost any other game in its era. At least Ar Nosurge made me smile, ff 13  only brought out the worst in me if a game could give you a virtual kick in the nuts that is the best way to describe what happened to me as they slowly crushed my hopes and expectations at every turn.

 Writing this post and looking back at all the great RPGs I have played the most important factor that so many games are missing is love. You could feel their love in each of the characters they created bringing them to life  making them cool and unique even without much character dialogue/depth. You could see their love in the world and dungeon designs going out of the way to detail even the smallest room to help immerse you into the world they wanted to create. You could hear their love in the music making sure each piece wasn't generic while bringing out the best of the area you are in and the emotions you were feeling at the time. But the greatest love of all was their love for fantasy and creating games it wasn't just about money for them they expressed themselves in every inch of those games wanting to deliver those feelings to you the best they possibly could. So with all due respect can you honestly tell me you felt Ar NoSurge and most of the RPGs these days carry even half the weight of the feelings that were poured into the games that still resonate in our hearts probably never to be forgotten.
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MeshGearFox
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« Reply #65 on: October 28, 2014, 07:45:45 PM »

I see the appeal of making it so you have to draw your own maps since that adds to the adventure feel of the game, but in those cases I think they should be like the later Etrian Odyssey entries and have an option.

I also definitely agree with liking maze-like dungeons moreso than "hallways and rooms" dungeons, unless it makes sense for it not to be (anything man-made basically). If it's a cave or something I don't think it should be easy to navigate.

The only case I can think of where I really hate maze-like dungeons is Phantasy Star 2 where they did this stupid crap like making the foreground block holes in the ground you're supposed to drop down.

Unfortunately, part of why I don't really care for SD3 all that much is because it ended up going the "hallways and rooms" dungeon design the entire game. Granted, the layout of those rooms were better than most variations of that design style in that, most of the time, it actually had a layout (whereas most of these types of "hallways and rooms" style games are even lucky to have their rooms laid out to form some kind of shape on the map, the worst examples being anything with procedurally built dungeons; at that point the developers are basically too cheap to bother hiring a level designer, or knows what a good one looks like; IMO, any level designer that suggests going procedural as anything more than a single dungeon gimmick should be fired on the spot).

People actually LIKE procedurally generated dungeons, because they've convinced themselves that "the dungeon has a different layout each time" means more replayability. The big problem though, as you noted, is that most proc-gen algorithms are good enough to make anything interesting.

You actually CAN have procedurally generated dungeons that are interesting, and there are several examples of roguelikes that pull this off, but -- and I think this is a huge problem with indie games in particular -- most people don't know just how much work you need to put into your system to pull it off.

A big factor with roguelikes in particular is that they have a lot of /stuff/ that exists on the map. With something like Persona 3, where you have basically chests, floors, and monsters (which do nothing on the map besides chase you or run from you), you just don't have enough stuff to work with to generate anything interesting. You really need a good variety of map objects and a lot of interaction between the non-player agents to pull of proc gen.
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o/` I do not feel joy o/`
o/` I do not dream o/`
o/` I only stare at the door and smoke o/`

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