CraneSoft

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I do provide alternative ways for players to gain EXP - EXP items, Quest rewards and from doing certain activities in-game (such as physical training). Of course, you can't remove EXP from killing enemies in a turn-based RPG else people will start avoiding normal enemy encounters.

With that said, in a fast-paced battle system like an ABS, the method of gaining EXP only after clearing an area can work - similar to mission-based EXP system in other real-time action games, but you have to ensure player knows that so they bother with killing the enemies.
 

Kristina

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Of course, I make sure they know, thanks!
 

lianderson

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In this one's game, reading books and interacting with NPCs secretly raises both knowledge and charisma, which automatically improves dialogue, quest rewards, town efficiency, and combat psychology. It also slightly increases accuracy, evasion, counter and protection from confusion.
 

FirestormNeos

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I don't think it's good to have battles that give no EXP, in a regular RPG. Makes battles feel like a waste of time, in my opinion. If it's EXP in addition to battles, then stuff like quest completion, map exploration, opening chests, crafting etc would work well enough.
If not gaining experience makes combat feel like a waste of time to the player, then do they really enjoy the combat of whatever game they're playing, or are they just being held hostage by the need to gain EXP/Levels?
 

Milennin

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If not gaining experience makes combat feel like a waste of time to the player, then do they really enjoy the combat of whatever game they're playing, or are they just being held hostage by the need to gain EXP/Levels?
Because making progress in the form of making numbers go up is a core aspect in RPG's, and gaining numbers by doing the stuff that requires and rewards having bigger numbers is what makes sense, from both a gameplay and roleplay perspective. Because nobody is playing RPG Maker games, or RPG's for that matter for the thrill of turn-based combat alone. RPG's are popular because people like seeing their numbers go up and in turn deal bigger numbers in combat in order to kill bigger enemies.

If the game rewards players for getting bigger numbers, why would players do the stuff that doesn't contribute to getting there? And no, "because the content is so fun, I can't imagine players going through it for any other reason" doesn't fly, when speaking about RPG combat. Not to say there's no enjoyment to be found in any turn-based RPG combat, but it'll never be the sole reason players go through regular encounters in the game. Regular encounters (in a traditional RPG) are a means for players to get their numbers up, because bigger numbers are required from them to progress to the next part, or to allow players to grind on if they struggle with a challenge in the game. Removing the getting numbers up part from regular encounters is defeating the purpose of their existence.

What you should be asking yourself is: why are players getting more proficient at doing something by doing stuff that is not at all related to that activity, but gain nothing from doing that activity itself?
 

FirestormNeos

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Because nobody is playing RPG Maker games, or RPG's for that matter for the thrill of turn-based combat alone.
Not to say there's no enjoyment to be found in any turn-based RPG combat, but it'll never be the sole reason players go through regular encounters in the game.
Removing the getting numbers up part from regular encounters is defeating the purpose of their existence.

Ah, my apologies for not paying attention the contextual parameters your initial post. It would appear that I am too used to thinking solely in terms of "general game design" and was not as aware of the niche we were working within as I should've been.

Honestly, this reply is making me wish there was a "thinking emoji" response to posts; I do genuinely appreciate your reply, as it has given me much to think about and consider... Though not the question at the end, as "Immersion" is frankly not something I look for in videogames. :/
 

Seacliff

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What I found through tabletop games is that players will be several times more focused on what gives them EXP than what doesn't give them EXP. Back in the 70s, it was common to have EXP earnings be based on treasure collected, which caused players would focus more on finding treasure than fighting monsters. This isn't a bad thing at all, as it encouraged players to socialized with enemies or set up traps instead of fighting head-on.

So I believe that whatever you are awarding Experience for, that needs to be the focus of the game. That is the player's goal because you set it for them. Challenges, level design, and core game mechanics should be built around the player completing that specific task.

Having combat in a game that doesn't directly reward combat is fine, but even if combat is required to earning EXP, players will be less invested in your game's battle mechanics. So at the very least, I wouldn't make a game with a complicated battle system if that's not how EXP is directly earned.
 

BK-tdm

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You could always go the mmo route, monaters DO give exp but the beef of the exp is on the quests be them kill said monsters or collect stuff in caves filled with monsters OR collect monster parts, all which need monster kills, which add "side" exp and/or side loot to it, dont outright remove exp from battles, that will just make players avoid all non obligatory boss encounters or quest mobs and deem all who arent these an annoying unnecesary time waster.
 

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