Jules98

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My current game I'm working on is very short (<2 hours or so), so the level cap is only 10. Beating most enemies gets you exactly to that level cap right in time for the final boss. Enemies are not refightable and are usually not realistically avoidable, so I have control of what the player's level will be and what skills they have at any given point in the game, which makes balancing easier.
 

Frogboy

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The next game I make will likely adhere closely to a d20 ruleset so it'll probably have a hard cap at 20 where you'll have such god-like power and a capstone ability that leveling beyond that will be pointless. I could decide to make "epic levels" but I have a feeling that will be overkill unless I develop epic quests and I don't think I want to do that.

In a more JRPG type game, I tend to prefer soft caps. Maybe a hard cap at 99 but the obscene amount of grinding it would take to get there is pointless. That soft cap could be pretty low, around level 25-40 for a full length RPG.
 

lianderson

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Hmmmmmmmmmmm...

My max level is 999 because I personally hate max levels! The leveling grants teh stats and 1 point of skill.

I have answered my answer to the question of this thread! Good day humans.
 

CHKNRAVE

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Here's a weird take I'm experimenting with in my main project.

I've decided that adventure progress and power scaling would be entirely carried by equipment, and levels would be reset at the start of battles.
Allies have a TP bar is repurposed into an XP bar, which increases for every productive action the user makes. Once it's filled up, level up, increase of stats. Maybe there's going to be equipment that increases your starting level, maybe some of your skills are available only at a certain level...
For that one, I'm thinking some sort of ultimate at level 10, because I usually work with smaller numbers so level 10 is past the mid-point for regular battles.

Of course, I have to make sure the stat increases are meaningful, both for equipment and levels.
 

Aesica

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Regarding the two "games" I've spawned so far, this is how I approached levels:

Beyond the Veil:
  • Fixed number of encounters with fixed level-ups. One encounter bumps you from 1 to 50, and another bumps you from 50 to 75. This is more of a method to gradually introduce players to each character's skillset, since battles are designed to be hard and you need to use each character's abilities to their fullest in order to win.
The Haunting: (the version I'm talking about here isn't actually available yet. There's a crap version on my site but it's a rushed contest entry)
  • No levels. Progression happens by acquiring equipment from defeated foes. Each group has a fixed drop so there's no RNG involved in this process.
And two projects I have in the works:

Game A:
  • Has levels, but will probably cap them at 30. Tempted to keep stats fixed though, and just have the levels used as a method to distribute skill points which the player uses to buy skills for each character.
Game B:
  • No levels. Characters randomly gain stats after any battle fought against strength-appropriate foes. Skills will be learned by a combination of having them innately, buying them from trainers, randomly during and/or after battle, or by absorbing them from enemies.
 

Azurose

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My characters start at different levels to represent their strength, so I feel like I'm working with multiple ''caps'' in mind. I want the levels to be story relevant, which means some characters should not be able to reach the level of other characters.

I'm specifically tailoring the dungeons and story battles for the level range of the characters, and try to balance it with 1-3 levels below and above an average number, with +3 making the dungeon rather easy and -3 making the dungeon quite challenging.

As for caps, seeing as that the levels are story relevant and represent canon character strength, I'm most likely not letting any character go above 30-40 in my current project. Level 99 seems a bit crazy to me, as in the epitome of strength. The lower tier characters will end up somewhere in 10-15. The difference being that lower characters start at 1 and higher at like 16.
 

bgillisp

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I think it all depends on your game. My last game I kept the 99 cap for levels, and in general you will be high 50s/low 60s going into the final battle, and I've seen streamers beat it in the high 50s.

My next game I'm going for low 40s for final battle. More to come on how that works once its done.
 

RachelTheSeeker

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Insofar as level caps, I've tried to keep them low in the games I've made. Something accessible in normal play, but not mandatory. I like the idea where the last level feels like a victory lap, and that you can get your best skills before then.

Only ones I've made where it was relevant were Forsaken Isle and The Painted Knight. In those games, you had a dedicated party that gained new abilities at set levels. They were short dungeon crawls, so you could only get the trio of adventurers to 5th level. They started with one or two skills, and getting to 3rd of 5th got you all of their skills.

For games that I admire? I might've gotten the idea from One Night At the Steeze, which feels like a prototype for the commercial game No Delivery. The max level you could get is 5th, and getting that far gave you a skill that could cheese the rest of the game. The dev suggested lower-lever runs if it felt too easy, and those are possible with different items. In One Night though, your EXP is in the form of tokens. In a Souls-like fashion, being defeated causes you to lose all your tokens. You can trade the currency in for consumables, but also for level ups. Heck, collectables known as trash can reward you a voucher for a free level-up.

By proxy, I like when levels add up over time, but aren't enough to blow through the game. For this idea, there's also Heroic Tale and its update, Heroic Tale VALUE!. The HP and MP boosts are kinda small for individual levels, but do add up by the end. Finding loot equipment and learning new skills is more important than grinding for levels. If you decide to grind, surviving fights also nets you consumables; this is important as there are no true shops mid-run to buy items. Even so, not every character learns (or needs) new skills, and the two spellcasters' best powers in the original scenario are optional treasures.
 

15098D

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I ended up with a game where level ups are less frequent so I have at least 1 new skill each level with a max level of 15 at which each character gets some kind of ultimate skill
 

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