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Author Topic: Future of 2D RPGs. VP2 and SD4  (Read 3221 times)
a_farce
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« on: April 27, 2006, 02:21:02 PM »

At this point in the console evolution can we say good bye to 2D RPGs?

I really don't understand why developers make every series that has been done wonderfully in 2D, 3D. They're working with a medium that they know will be dated in  a few years.

Valkyrie Profile 2 and Seiken Densetsu 4 are two games that I'm very excited for but they could have been so pretty if they were 2D. Legend of Mana was artistically beautiful, why Square Enix wouldn't want to recreate such a standard in a sequel is beyond me.

Also, speaking of Legend of Mana, anybody know of any upcoming Brownie Brown projects? I had heard rumors that they were working on a GameCube title.
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Professor Gast
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« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2006, 02:28:01 PM »

Brownie Brown's last project was Mother 3 which was just released in Japan a week ago. No idea, what else they are working on.
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Cauton
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« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2006, 02:28:25 PM »

Nah, 2D will still be around for a long time. Sure, high profile companies like Square-Enix will most likely focus entirely on purty 3d grafix from here on to increase their sales, but there will still be companies like Nippon Ichi and GUST pumping out 2D titles.

I agree, though, that there's too much emphasis on graphics these days. Some of the RPGs I've enjoyed the most of this console generation has been in 2D (Atelier Iris and Disgaea - well, the latter is mix of 2D and 3D), and pretty graphics can never make up for subpar gameplay or story.
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Leo
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« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2006, 03:13:13 PM »

Sure, you'll always have those niche titles on consoles, done by such companies as Nippon Ichi, Gust, and Nihon Falcom. I don't believe that will ever change, which is great. And you can be certain handhelds will always be around, since they're big business. So those will cater 2D RPGs.

Everyone should check out Mother 3. It's a classic example of a 2D emotional adventure, reminiscent of the golden years of the 16-bit era. Seriously, I think the game parellels Final Fantasy VI in more ways than one. Some tunes sound similar to songs on FFVI's soundtrack, and the 'heartrending' drama as well.
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Dice
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« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2006, 03:13:15 PM »

it'll always axist....maybe not in 500 years or something (when we're touching 3D buttons or voicing options), but hey, they'll use them for icons or cursors, or menus. =P
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Robert Boyd
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« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2006, 09:16:34 AM »

The thing is 2D graphics haven't really progressed all that much in the past 12 years.  You take a look at something like Chrono Trigger (a SNES game) and it still looks decent now.  Heroine Anthem (a Chinese RPG) looks as good as any 2D game I know and that came out 3-4 years ago.  Games like Popolocrois and Valkyrie Profile look wonderful and they came out for the PS1.  I'm all for more 2D games, but I really wish we saw some sort of improvement with them as the years go by.
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Cauton
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« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2006, 09:23:48 AM »

I don't quite agree with you there, Robert. 2D graphics have improved a lot in quality over the years as well, if only because games are presented in higher resolution now than they were back in the day of the SNES. Yes, Chrono Trigger still looks decent, but the sprites are small and the colors aren't as vivid as in a game like Atelier Iris.

Also, another example is 2D fighting games. Compare Street Fighter 2 with any of the Guilty Gear games, for an example, and you'll see that today's 2D graphics are bounds and leaps above the old when it comes to size of sprites, color and smoothness of animation.
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Dios GX
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« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2006, 11:04:16 AM »

Graphic medium is selected based off the gameplay mechanics the creator and company wishes to make it. It just so happens that using three-dimensional axes (that's plural for Axis, not the wood cutting axe) tends to make some gameplay look and feel different.

One thing I will say, if you put platforming in a 3D game you better have good controls. I honestly feel that sort of thing needs to be left to 2D based gameplay.

But as for it "going away", that is pretty much like expecting the world to stop using acrylic paints because they can use Maya for 3D rendering. It isn't "one medium is better than another", they are two entirely separate things.

As for 2D graphics not improving, the amount of effort it takes to create a polygon model with textures as opposed to millions of sprite animation frames can be chalked up to.

Either way, I can still enjoy a game for what it is. It doesn't matter how it's presented, as long as it complements the gameplay and atmosphere.
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Bogatyr
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« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2006, 02:17:52 PM »

Graphic medium is selected based off the gameplay mechanics the creator
Quote
and company wishes to make it. It just so happens that using three-dimensional axes (that's plural for Axis, not the wood cutting axe) tends to make some gameplay look and feel different.


I totally agree. The way a 2D game plays is totally different from a 3D game. I always liked 2D RPGs, not because of the graphics, but because of the kind of gameplay it has.
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Robert Boyd
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« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2006, 03:26:52 AM »

A 2D action game will obviously play differently than a 3D one, but I don't see any difference inherent in gameplay between 2D & 3D RPGs.  There are plenty of 3D RPGs with old school gameplay.

I forgot about the resolution difference because it hasn't really made much difference in the videogame realm...yet.  Once HD TVs become the standard and we're all playing our PS3s, X-Box 360s, and Wii (Such an ugly name), we'll see more of a difference in 2D graphics.  Of course, on the PC it's a different story.

Still, it's hard to deny that improvements in 2D graphics haven't slowed drastically.  Yes, games like Guilty Gear XX, Heroine Anthem, and Atelier Iris look much better than Chrono Trigger & Street Fighter 2, but they don't look that much better than say Valkyrie Profile, Street Fighter Alpha 3, and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night.  In about 4 years and a system later, we went from FF7 to FFX, a tremendous leap in graphics.  4 years later and on the same system, we're getting stuff like Shadow of the Colossus, Resident Evil 4, and Rogue Galaxy.  Admittedly, improvements in 3D graphics are slowing, but they're still improving at a drastically faster rate than 2D graphics are and both the PC and console gaming worlds are in the process of making a jump to even more impressive 3D graphics.

I mean, just look at Guilty Gear.  Is there really that much different in graphics between Guilty Gear X and Guilty Gear XX: Slash considering the time difference between the 2 games?  4 years from now, when we're playing Half Life 3 & Final Fantasy 14, I daresay the prettiest 2D games won't look noticeably better than GGXX: Slash and this saddens me.

Note, despite all this, I am a fan of 2D games.  Get me and a friend together and there are few things I enjoy more than an hour or two of a Metal Slug game.  I just wish both hardware and software companies would put more effort into improving the field.
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Bogatyr
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« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2006, 10:10:31 AM »

I disagree. I never knew why I did not like 3D RPGs much - well, that was years ago, when I liked to be old school; now I like any RPG, as long as it is good - but since some time now I have finally come to a rational conclusion, other than "I like the feeling of old 2D RPGs better" as to why I still like 2D better.
Anyway, the reason is that I think both type of games play quite different.  3D RPGs tire me a bit, after a while I have to turn off the console - there are exception though. Why is that? Well, navigation/exploration is pretty tiresome in most 3D games. I will use Suikoden V as an example, because I have just beat it this morning.
Great game, but really, it was a pain to explore it sometimes. As someone else has mentioned, the designs of cities were not very good, and it was not hard to get lost. Of course this can be solved by a map or better designs, but it is undeniable that 3D graphics make everything huge and more wide apart. Sure, you can say that makes RPGs more expansive, which perfectly suits the genre, but more often than not, this "expansiveness" is pure filler. Like going from point A to B in a city. In a 2D RPG it will take you 10 seconds, in a 3D one it will take twice as much, or oftenly more. In the first time you are going there it is a nice thing - "huge cities, now that sounds like a lively world" - but when you are required to keep coming back it becomes a drag. I guess thats why I grow tired of fetch quests: because they take much longer than before.
Taking Suikoden V as an example once more, I really did not feel like going back and forth looking for characters in this game, like I did with Suikoden II, because exploring a place like Sol Falena sucks.
Take SO 2 and 3. I loved going back to cities to trigger different Private Actions in the second game, but whenever I had to re visit a city in the third game it pissed me off. Sure, SO3 also had terrible designs, but it seems this is recurrent in 3D RPGs.
Now take dungeons for example. Why can I stand a very high enconter rate in a game like FFVI, but not in Suikoden V? Simple, as high as may be the encounter rate in a 2D RPG, you just need to press forward in a line, wherein in 3D dungeons to explore every corner and nook you need to walk far more, to all the sides, go in circles etc. At most a 2D dungeon may branch into several paths, but the pattern is still the same. Exploring that Deep Forest in Suikoden V almost drove me crazy. For a neurotic like me who likes to find all paths and treasuries, this is really frustrating Now add a high encounter rate of a game like Suikoden V and dungeons in the vein of SO3. It would become an unplayable game.
It seems everything drags longer in 3D games. I don't remember battle animations in 2D games that made me want to break the disk in half - FFVIII.
As to the question of which RPGs are better, 2D or 3D, each one has his own answer. I am only pointing out that both types of RPGs play quite different.
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Seiken_Densetsu
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« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2006, 08:32:49 PM »

I am one of the biggest tri-Ace fans and Seiken Densetsu fans you will meet, and I was disappointed in Seiken Densetsu 4's exit from the 2d realm.  But it might be a good thing.  VP2 is generally the same 2d game, except with 3d graphics.  

Man, but it is tri-Ace, and I have never hated a tri-Ace game.  I have put in over 300 hours in the original Valkyrie Profile, and I plan to put more in both VP: Lenneth, and VP: Silmeria. =D
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