RMMV 2 Vampyrus (A spin-off of the Ulfar series)

Discussion in 'Completed Games' started by leenat40, Feb 20, 2019.

  1. leenat40

    leenat40 Veteran Veteran

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    VampyrusMenu1.png
    "Embrace the demons within"


    The Story


    2 Vampyrus is a single player, story driven RPG taking place in a futuristic medieval kingdom of Endel. You play as Adrian, a man that has lost everything to war and vampirs. Through a chain of events Adrian realizes that in order to have his peace he needs to get revenge on the man who killed his wife and burned down his village. What awaits Adrian is a tragic tale of sacrifice, loss and revelations.



    The Gameplay

    2 Vampyrus is primarily a story driven adventure game with minimal gameplay interludes consisting of light stealth and detective work.


    The Screenshots

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    The Trailers







     

    Attached Files:

    #1
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  2. VeryXInh

    VeryXInh Veteran Veteran

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    The long awaited game has been released :)
    You can post it on itch.io or steam for more potential attention
     
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  3. leenat40

    leenat40 Veteran Veteran

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    @VeryXInh Yup, thanks for the advice! I've posted it in a few places! Here's hoping people like it! :D
     
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  4. Poryg

    Poryg Dark Lord of the Castle of Javascreeps Veteran

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    Amazing, I can't even get to launch it :D
    Screenshot_25.png
     
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  5. leenat40

    leenat40 Veteran Veteran

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    @Poryg As in it's jsut a white screen and it doesn't load? That's weird.
     
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  6. Poryg

    Poryg Dark Lord of the Castle of Javascreeps Veteran

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    Well, works now... So I'm going to try it for a bit and see.

    EDIT: Well, I played the game and finished the game. Where do I start though...
    It was a nice try definitely. But I can't help than mark it as a failure.
    The title screen looks nice. Although I immediately got introduced to Darren Curtis's music. Which I of course don't mind, DC has made some nice pieces. However...
    You can't use a music piece just because it sounds nice. It needs to fit in the game and the specific timeframe. And that's exactly what it did not. The story was accompanied by unfitting music, not to mention its constant changing was rather disrupting. If you want to change music often, you need to justify it in the story. For example you can change ambient music quite a lot in places where no real story is progressing (ambient music is neutral, so changing it doesn't hurt as much), although these changes need to be more fluid than abrupt like that, it's impossible to play ten soundtracks in five minutes (small exaggeration of course).
    The story was no better to be frank. It was all over the place, one minute it was this and the other one it was completely different... and before it started making sense, it was over. I'd say this kind of a story would be way better for a visual novel than for JRPG. Especially considering the fact that I was more or less an errand boy.
    Graphically the game is not great at all. You walk through giant endless forests with a crap ton of trees, not knowing if you go the right way or the wrong way. The design oftentimes did not even make sense. For example what kind of a village will actually surround itself with stone walls and watch towers? Villages were supposed to be protected by their respective lord and at most wooden pallisades, because stone walls were quite an expensive thing to waste on a village.
    Also, the lighting felt overused to me.
    Houses using lanterns to have light in them and no natural source of light... During broad daylight?
    The constant yellow and red was rather bad in combination with the red window skin.
    And I have absolutely no idea what sense it makes to put dark people into dark places so they are harder to notice (for example the two guys at the blacksmith in the mining village).
    As for in-game features...
    If you create a story where you're essentially an errand boy, you really need to consider different formats. An adventure game or a visual novel is much better than 2D JRPG in many cases.
    If nothing special is happening, it's absolutely pointless to limit character's walking speed to the point where you did in the game. I had "Always dash" on and was constantly annoyed that the character was walking at a normal walking speed.
    Catching his son leads to game over? Absolutely unjustifiable. Restarting the minigame, fine. But game over? Even worse with that slow evented menu I had to deal with every single time without the option to skip that slow part!
    Playing as every sort of character... Cannot say I was too fond of it.
    Poor choice of save menu. The only places with faces were Yanfly's gab windows and Yanfly's save core. The rest was with no faces... So why even do that? Instead of using Yanfly's save core plugin you could have gone for mine, since it allows greater customizability and having statements about where the story is currently at would be more perspective than avatars and levels in a game that essentially doesn't use any of these.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
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  7. leenat40

    leenat40 Veteran Veteran

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    @Poryg I'm super grateful you finished it and gave good and honeat feedback for it, so thanks a lot for that!
    If possible, could you please be a little more in-depth with the story? What could have been done better and such? I would really love to improve as much as possible as I go on making games.
    Also, this is more out of curiosity: Did you get the true ending? (the one thst you get after reading the Truth Entries from the main menu)
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
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  8. Poryg

    Poryg Dark Lord of the Castle of Javascreeps Veteran

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    I still haven't finished writing my review. I'm typing it piece by piece, because time reasons :D

    I did indeed get the true ending. So I've seen the whole story.
    The biggest problem was, the game was story-based, but essentially the story was all over the place. In an RPG you want to dedicate a chapter some time. The excessive speed of the story worked against it. And the further it went, the worse it got. The story went one direction only to take a 180° turn in few minutes. And the plot twist just as much as they increased, they were also more predictable. Yet the story as a whole made no sense. Not to mention, a good story has distinct characters with distinct personalities. In this case everybody was a generic villain who became like this from the stupidest of reasons. And on top of that you made a mistake that is nowadays absolutely common. There are people 2 steps away who want to kill the protagonist, yet they let him and some random girl that harmed one of theirs a minute ago have an undisturbed five minute conversation.
    A good story also makes you engaged so you want to unravel it. Some do it through suspense. Some do it through likable characters. Some do it through natural development of the story. The game had none of these. It was incoherent to say the least. Large part of it is about getting revenge for his son against his son, but suddenly the last chapter was about some nanostuffies from scifi past that's there just for plot convenience (note: I know it was not plot convenience. I know it was the world's history. However, it was history that was not established properly, so for me it was a completely foreign subject, hence why I called it plot convenience). On top of that the game contains swear words. However, just like there's a reason they belong in GTA games, there's also a reason they don't belong in most rpg maker games. And I'm by no means a purist or moralist, I just found them out of place.
    Just like the large errand to get an invitation password to the pub. Whole story progresses so fast and then suddenly an errand.

    Also, I hated the idea that despite being uninterested in the backstory, I had to accept being spoonfed the Truth entries. If someone is interested in your story, they will want to explore it further. I just wanted to get over with it as quickly as possible.
    It's not a bad thing when there are optional ways to get to know all the story, however since some players aren't interested in full story, it's pointless to spoonfeed it to them.

    So to summarize my story feedback, this is what you probably should improve your skills on:
    Storytelling:
    A Harry Potter book resumé is only two pages long, but the book itself has to be longer if it wants to be any good. Slow it down. You also need a logical backstory and a logical progression. Everything in a story needs to have its place.Games are even more demanding in this matter btw. Because it's not just story and characters in this case. But also music, art styles, mapping styles and features.
    Characters:
    They need to have personality. This personality needs to manifest through their actions. It can develop, but the development needs either time or to make sense to be sudden. In the game everybody was a schizophrenic psychopath.
    Maps:
    You need to give the maps some meaning. Having large maps just for the sake of it is artificially inflating walking time. In JRPG empty or in-between maps often serve as a place where the player can cool down a bit from random encounters/battles and heal in peace.
    JRPG:
    If you use this genre, you need to justify it. You don't necessarily need to add combat if you don't want to. But making a JRPG just because you own rpg maker... There is no point.

    And btw. You should know that it doesn't rain inside houses and mine inside a mountain :D

    Programmers often like to take a rubber duck and try to explain a program they want to write to it. The point of it is to formulate a plan, structure and whether it makes sense. The same could be done in game design. Take a rubber duck and justify your choices to it. What's the reason of it and how does it fit the overall scheme. If it sounds stupid, there is a possibility it is (or you just explained it badly). The rubber duck, compared to a friend, has two advantages:
    1. It will never tell you no
    2. It will never ask you for the backstory it doesn't know, meaning if you have already established earlier points, you don't need to establish them again.

    I also forgot... The game lacked fluidity and smoothness. Which was a tremendous setback.
    The title menu is slow. The "Day 0 message is slow. A picture would be enough, there's no need for a scrolling message. Actor movements are slow. The errand for passwords is slow. The ladder climbing with gab windows... Even if it did have the effect you wanted, the ladder was too long.
    Story transitions on the other hand are sudden and jagged, there are also frequent sudden teleports.
    Speaking about the ladder, I would also recommend you to learn a bit of Javascript and possibly PIXI. You could have done a better job if instead of making the player climb you'd make a climbing scene during which instead of gab windows random PIXI texts of various colours, etc. fly around, appear statically, appear from left... To break the monotonnous gab windows and make it more obvious that these are various memories from various people.
    There's no reason to be afraid of javascript. The basics are fairly easy and even with just basics you can do some really powerful things.

    There is one positive thing I can say about the game. Apart from typos, grammar errors and a small bug here and there I did not encounter anything that would be considered bug. But overall it failed.

    The review is now mostly complete. I might add something sometime, but maybe I won't.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
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  9. leenat40

    leenat40 Veteran Veteran

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    @Poryg Thanks a lot for taking the time to write this constructively and in-depth. I really appreciate it! :D
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
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