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Author Topic: When do RPGs stop being fun?  (Read 14714 times)
blummer
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« on: December 26, 2008, 12:01:04 PM »

I like RPGs very much, but I find that moreso than other genres, a lot of them tend to inspire feelings of boredom at one point or another. I'm basically talking about the sensation of "I know that playing this game is worth it--or should be worth it, but damn, I really don't like having to sit around listening to my characters talk so much or spend so and so many hours grinding or so forth." The Tales games are a good example of this. I can recall playing Tales of Legendia, and being fairly engaged in it at the beginning. After a certain point, maybe 25 or so hours into it, I started to feel that the game was dragging, mostly because the many dungeons and random encounters were starting to wear thin on me, and in the grand tradition of Tales games, at least 50% of the game was made of up pointless little scenes of the characters talking about nothing in particular. I'm not talking about the skits, I'm talking about the moments where the characters would go back and forth, saying 10 lines of dialogue when they really only needed to say 3 (anyone who's played the game might understand what I'm talking about). I did finish the game, but I had to force myself to get through the second quest. While I did enjoy the game, it's weird--I look back at it now saying that I liked it but at the time when I was actually playing it, the slow game design really annoyed the heck out of me.

You could dismiss this by saying that Tales of Legendia is just a crappy RPG, but I feel that a lot of RPGs tend to do this, Japanese RPGs in particular, and I suppose it's become sort of a main topic of discussion in the whole recent "JRPGs vs WRPGs" debate. Putting all that aside, the fact of the matter is that many RPGs pad the story out with unnecessary dialogue, wear the game thin with unnecessary fetch quests and tasks that are meant to boost the game up and beyond the 40 hour mark, and in general, stop being "fun" for certain large amounts of time. One might argue that when a game stops being fun then it's time to put it down, but I was curious as to whether or not anyone has felt this way when playing a game before, and then forced themselves to finish it anyway. More than once I've felt this way when stuck in the middle of an RPG, and I even felt it in games like FF7 and Skies of Arcadia, which I otherwise remember quite fondly. Do any others have any particular stories when this sort of thing happened to them? When a game gets boring and starts dulling down, would you decide to zoom straight to the end just for the sake of finishing the thing? And should we even be forcing ourselves to finish games in the first place? I feel that RPGs, with their high focus on story, more often then not pressure players to finish an occasionally boring game that they might put down otherwise. Or is it merely the big name value of certain RPG franchises (Final Fantasy, Tales, etc) that makes us want to finish them? 

Just some food for thought.
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Ryos
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« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2008, 12:28:35 PM »

Oh yeah, I totally finished up Magna Carta: Tears of Blood even though the experience made me want to tear my eyes out.  I think it was something like the car wreck onlooker phenomenon.  It was so bad I just couldn't help but see if it would ever have a redeeming value after the first couple somewhat decent hours.  For the most part though, if I don't like something I just won't bother getting to the end, like with the original .hack - I got to the fourth volume (somehow), but I just can't bring myself to finish it even though G.U. would benefit from it.
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« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2008, 02:01:00 PM »

Itīs actually quite simple, when you start playing you usually get addicted to the game, the more time you spent on it the more you get used to it and thats what makes the game boring since itīs more of the same it feels like a drag on... when it happens I usually go and play another game, the come back when iīm bored of the other game
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dalucifer0
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« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2008, 03:37:28 PM »

When the plot starts getting ridiculous, when the story should have ended way before it did, etc.
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Losfer
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« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2008, 04:36:49 PM »

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When do RPGs stop being fun?

Chocobo racing.
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Fadedsun
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« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2008, 04:51:53 PM »

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When do RPGs stop being fun?

Chocobo racing.

Are you trying to tell me you didn't spend time racing your Chocobos in FFVII? That's madness!

For me, they get boring when other games that I want to play come out. I get interested in a new RPG and forget about the old one, forget what's going on in the game. When I start it up again and can't remember what the hell happened or where I need to go, I get bored. As I got older, it becomes harder for me to sit down for hours and actually play through an RPG.
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Leo
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« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2008, 04:54:53 PM »

I'll give an example. I've been trudging through Tales of Vesperia for about 65 hours, and am nearing the end of the game. The story wasn't anything to brag about, but it was the battle system that made the experience for me, and well, the character interaction as well. It gets to a certain point where you realize that the plot isn't doing anything for you, and you're seeing it to the end because you've already invested too much time into the game already. That's how it is for me, anyway.
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Sagacious-T
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« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2008, 06:02:19 PM »

I think RPGs really take a hit when either the Story or Gameplay starts to fall through. Both are crucial driving points to playing any RPG (Unless you're one of those masochist dungeon crawling types).

I've enjoyed Infinite Undiscovery lately, but the main combos you use are extremely repetitive and the story never seems to really pull you in. It's not a bad game but it had so much wasted potential.

I think a lot of Action RPGs stop becoming fun when they become too grind-focused. That's what killed the Level 5 games for me.
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Dincrest
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« Reply #8 on: December 26, 2008, 06:25:11 PM »

If you play a lot of RPGs, they all tend to feel the same and you get burnout.  This is always a good time to play something other than RPGs for a while or just lock up your consoles and take a break from gaming for a week or two.  Then RPGs seem fresh again.

If you have a busy schedule and can maybe only play on weekends, then a 65 hour game seems insanely long.  25 would be just right.  But it's not time alone that's a factor.  Some games may be short, but just feel long and draggy.  Others are long but don't feel draggy.  The draggy comes from many factors others have mentioned.  Sometimes lack of time is a reason why I'll break out the gameshark and power through an otherwise lengthy game. 
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Buddy
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« Reply #9 on: December 26, 2008, 06:50:22 PM »

I monly become board when an RPG is left oo wide open and doesn't even hit at what you should do or where you should go next.
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blummer
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« Reply #10 on: December 26, 2008, 06:53:16 PM »

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Chocobo racing.

I remember in FF7 the chocobo racing itself didn't bother me that much, but the whole chocobo raising sidequest to try to get Knights of the Round did. I ended up never finishing it, just because for me that quest came so late in the game that I really just wanted to power through to the end (and knew that I could without any help from Knights of the Round, thanks very much) rather than spend like an extra five hours trying to breed chocobos just so I could get a summon. Which brings me to another fact--I hate it when certain RPG subquests or abilities become available too late in the game. Breath of Fire 2's shaman system is another example I can think of off the top of my head that did this. All of your characters get the ability to transform into uber versions of themselves, but if I remember right you aren't really able to do this until you're almost at the final dungeon.

Quote
I'll give an example. I've been trudging through Tales of Vesperia for about 65 hours, and am nearing the end of the game. The story wasn't anything to brag about, but it was the battle system that made the experience for me, and well, the character interaction as well. It gets to a certain point where you realize that the plot isn't doing anything for you, and you're seeing it to the end because you've already invested too much time into the game already. That's how it is for me, anyway.

Yeah, I've felt the same way before. You want to get your money's worth, and if you've already invested that long into a game, the thought of not finishing it is bothersome.

Quote
If you have a busy schedule and can maybe only play on weekends, then a 65 hour game seems insanely long.  25 would be just right.  But it's not time alone that's a factor.  Some games may be short, but just feel long and draggy.  Others are long but don't feel draggy.

I don't have much time to play games anymore like you said, which is probably why all this stuff bothers me in the first place. This is why features like "40+ hours" or "tons of replayability" rarely appeal to me anymore.
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Dice
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« Reply #11 on: December 26, 2008, 07:00:52 PM »

I'll give an example. I've been trudging through Tales of Vesperia for about 65 hours, and am nearing the end of the game. The story wasn't anything to brag about, but it was the battle system that made the experience for me, and well, the character interaction as well. It gets to a certain point where you realize that the plot isn't doing anything for you, and you're seeing it to the end because you've already invested too much time into the game already. That's how it is for me, anyway.

I felt that same about the story, and the way Abyss tops it about a million times over.
I did like, however, the Character *Development* though.  A lot of them go through some hefty personality changes as a result of events in the course of the game.  Abyss dealt more with the past, Vesperia the present.  Furthermore, it makes me so happy that the game deals with the theme of "Justice" (that animes freaking love to gush on) in a non-cheesy way.
I was embarassed playing Kingdom Hearts 1/2 when fucken Sora & Friend's would preach about their "Power and Strength of their Hearts".  Fuck.  I call that Christmas HAM!
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dalucifer0
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« Reply #12 on: December 26, 2008, 08:09:12 PM »

I felt the same about ToV and was glad it only took me 40 hours to beat.
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Wild Armor
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« Reply #13 on: December 26, 2008, 08:37:57 PM »

They stop being fun for me when the random encounter rate is higher than the price on gas during war. About ToV, I'm finding that game to be pretty fun right now. I started it this week and not seeing much problems at all. My sister and I actually find the skits pretty funny, especially when the frames run away or attacking each other. Haha
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Willy Elektrix
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« Reply #14 on: December 26, 2008, 09:39:30 PM »

I quit Etrian Odyssey when they made me start all my characters over again at level 1 after I maxed out my levels (at level 70) about 60% of the way through the game. I quit Etrian Odyssey 2 for the exact same reason. Frankly, when games pull that cheap shit to extend the length of the game play rather than a) just adding more game, or b) making the game shorter (20 hours is more than enough for me), I just quit. There are too many great games out there for me to waste me time slogging through ones I'm sick of.

That being said, I'm sick of these long ass games. Why not make a short game that is so fun and so concise that you can play through it 3 or 4 times?
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