For you what is the most frustating thing about making a RPG maker game?

LAede_Aveugle

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Hello, I decided to create this thread so that I (and other creators) can put out of our hearts the frustrations and inconveniences that bother us deeply when we are creating games.

Because I love RPG maker since my childhood (even if I never managed to finish a game... yet), there are really times that this hobby makes me want to throw my computer out the window. Here is my little list:

1) Correct my syntax.
Here is a monster that I created myself. Personally, I see myself as a writer who tries to make games than a developer, so my texts are full of texts, lore, dialogues and since English is not my native language, I have to spend so much time rereading the game to see if my sentences sound correct (grammar in itself is not a big concern for me).

And since I'm not masochistic enough, I decided to write my games using a more arcane language to try to recreate the atmosphere of the books I love so much like "The Lord of the Rings", "The Iliad ", "The Heike motonagari", etc.

2) Create interesting combat mechanics.
I completely desisted from accomplishing this. For me, the RPG combat system is super boring to play and a thousand times worse to program. I know some brave souls managed to make it a bit more interesting, but for now, I've opted to ignore it altogether.

3) Having to accept the sad reality that no matter how much effort I put into my game, the fact that I have no artistic talent means that it will never be super popular.

Yeah, I think all artists have to accept that expecting their work to become super popular most of the time only brings disappointment. But in the case of RPG maker games, there is one more thing to accept and that is that if you don't have enough talent to create visuals that move away from the RTP, your game will probably be ignored by most people.

Indeed there are so many games with wonderful graphics that are still completely ignored.

It's sad, it's unfair, but "it's life" you always have to go forward with the hope that you will manage to transmit all the passion that you put into your game to a small group of people.

Here are my frustrations, and you?
 

Zevia

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2) Create interesting combat mechanics.
I completely desisted from accomplishing this. For me, the RPG combat system is super boring to play and a thousand times worse to program. I know some brave souls managed to make it a bit more interesting, but for now, I've opted to ignore it altogether.
I think what you will find is that just about anything one person lists, another will be shocked - shocked! - that someone could hate that. I hate mapping, yet I see people talk about how they love mapping and hate building combat systems.

I love coming up with interesting combat mechanics. I know JavaScript, so I've super enjoyed the opportunity to dive in and rebuild the combat system for my latest project to my desire - the goal has been "this game doesn't use any Plugin that I didn't write from scratch," and I've written a lot of Plugins to significantly overhaul the base system.

I love spending time programming in complex AI so enemies will have smart prioritization - don't apply a debuff if everyone already has it. Don't heal if you're at or near full health. Really analyze the situation and make a decision that makes the player have to think of how to respond, instead of occasionally giving them "free" turns because of silly mistakes the AI makes.

I love making abilities that aren't just "damage with x element", but have interesting play around buff and debuff management, around synergies, around something that the base game can't do without very complicated eventing that I can build through (mostly) elegant code. Every single one of my enemies in my latest project has a Plugin to drive their AI and a lot of my player abilities have Plugins that drive the behavior and mechanics of their abilities. I love it.

What keeps me from working on my project, though? Art assets.

3) Having to accept the sad reality that no matter how much effort I put into my game, the fact that I have no artistic talent means that it will never be super popular.
I want to make a werewolf that looks truly vicious for my games. hiddenone and Avery have created some amazing resources that blend with the RTP so well, but they're used by so many other projects that they don't stand out. The wolves look great, but they don't look mean. They don't look unique.

I want to create animations for my abilities that stand out as unique, but I hate doing frame-by-frame animation building.

But for all the programming and JavaScript knowledge I have, I don't have artistic talent. I could ruin stick figures. I can't make unique tilesets. I can't make unique sprites. I can't make unique animations.

I've gotten pretty creative making unique ability animations by copying the RTP animation sheets and twisting them around and editing them in Paint.NET, but I can't make anything from scratch the way I truly want to. I can't make tilesets to save my life. I have zero pixel art capabilities and I know the time it would take to get to something satisfying would take years. Probably to the point where the engine I'm using to build my game would be so out of date that it would be laughable.

So I think about maybe trying to partner up with people, work as part of a team - but then I'm not making the game I wanted on my own, because teamwork demands compromise. I'm not writing the story I wanted, I'm not building the dialogue trees I wanted, I'm not necessarily creating the art I wanted. So then the only reasonable solution is to commission someone for what I want - but then I consider that, in all likelihood, I'm never really going to finish this project and it's going to be commissions that never see the light of day.

And so I spend time thinking of all the great mechanics and ideas I have, story points and plots and how they'd play out, how to program them, and enjoy doing that work - then never work on the game because I don't want to do all the parts I don't enjoy, like mapping and spriting and animations and sound effects and hunting for music and on and on and on.

As a result, progress is slow. I have to fight through the stuff I don't have talent for and fight through the knowledge that most people will probably never play the game because I'm using RTP art. Sometimes I just have to fight through not wanting to program after work because I spend all day programming for work. But bit by bit, I slowly build something that I can hope people will play one day.

Then I grow an appreciation for people who put forth the time and effort to the things they didn't want to do, the money to pay for other people doing things better than they could do, and the patience to stick through all the aggravation of making a game just so someone else could enjoy whatever content they wanted to put out.
 

Arctica

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  1. I must learn how to draw.
  2. I probably have to buy a tablet to support #1.
  3. I am everything. The director, the level designer, the art designer, the music composer(to an extent), the story writer (easy part), basically all design fields XD
 

Drakkonis

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Are we talking about making RPG games in general, or using RPGMaker specifically?

In general, making a game that is generally as expansive as most RPGs tend to inherently be makes you realize just why most games are made by teams. It doesn't matter how good your ideas are, they still need to be implemented. Graphics. Mechanics. Music. Sound effects. Nobody is likely going to be talented in ALL those aspects. So if you insist on making a game by yourself... the parts you are weakest with will suffer. For me, that's graphics and music more than anything else. My stuff will always be limited to freely available stuff unless I shell out for someone to do the work for me, because I have no talent to create my own. This means I have to settle for "close enough" in most cases. Even now I'm making graphics I need by making tweaks to the RTP, because trying to make what I need/want from scratch is going to look HORRIBLE, especially alongside the rest of the RTP.

For RPG Maker specifically... my biggest issues with it happen to come from the most attractive aspect of the series. It's billed as a way to make games without needing to worry about a lot of the under-the-hood stuff. But BECAUSE of that, it tends to be necessarily limited on customization options for stuff. It's been mitigated on the gameplay front over the last decade with allowing custom scripting, but stuff in the editor has been beyond a dev's reach. You can't really change certain editor settings, and even for stuff that can be changed via scripts, the editor isn't built to handle stuff that way, so what you see in the editor will then not match up to how it's going to look in-game.

A specific example that I'm having issues with is autotiles and the tilesets. You CANNOT change how the editor uses them. The behavior is locked in, so anything I DO make still has to play by their rules. I could probably customize their behavior in the game with a plugin, but that would require learning the graphics system, then rewriting it, then when making the maps, always starting the game to make sure it looks the way I want, since what I see in the editor will NOT be what I'll see in the game.

All of it boils down to this: A great idea doesn't necessarily need skills, trained or via talent. But bringing that idea into the world for anyone else to enjoy? There's a whole mess of stuff involved in that. And no matter how good my story is... I can't adequately convey that story without all those other pieces, the very pieces I have no talent for.

That and I have no time to work on my project... and working on this stuff on a laptop is a real pain. lol
 

Indinera

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I'm also on the "love making rm games" team.
It's all part of a process, even the bad things. I suppose beta testing can get a bit old after too many playthroughs.
 

Soulrender

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You ask

For you what is the most frustating thing about making a RPG maker game?​


I answer
Writing dialogues.
 

RCXGaming

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Oh no, where do all of these bugs keep coming from!? :kaomad2:

(Real talk, maybe the need to ask for an artist and a musician. Other than that I love, love, love making games in RPG Maker.)
 

rpgLord69

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2) Create interesting combat mechanics.
I completely desisted from accomplishing this. For me, the RPG combat system is super boring to play and a thousand times worse to program. I know some brave souls managed to make it a bit more interesting, but for now, I've opted to ignore it altogether.

3) Having to accept the sad reality that no matter how much effort I put into my game, the fact that I have no artistic talent means that it will never be super popular.

I feel your pain on those two points :D

Having no artistic ability at all (like I'm at a stick figure level) has annoyed me since elementary school. Annoyed I couldn't draw, annoyed I couldn't paint Warhammer figures, annoyed I couldn't draw manga sketches and now annoyed that I can't make my own art for RPG Maker. Really frustrating!

And even with a basic combat system, I'd literally start crying if I had to make varied troops with different abilities + combat events for each area in a ~10 hour game. And try to balance the whole thing.

Those would be my two main frustrations as well. But it's not limited to those by any means. Hunting for bugs in more complex events fries my brain and the thought of having to go on a quest to search for music is disheartening. If I'm being honest, there's a lot more things that frustrate me than what bring me joy. So jealous of people who feel that they love making games and most aspects of it :D
 

SGHarlekin

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Oh lord....
I absolutely despise creating gear... I hate having to fiddle with their stats, their names, their looks and their descriptions. I can write dialogue all day, I can do mapping for weeks and I enjoy making animations.
Oh and I also hate how expensive pixel art is compared to what I pay for my other art commissions.
 

Froggo32

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The lack of art skills. Many people get put off when they see RTP. I try to edit the RTP by making it look "simple" like in 16/8-bit game but its all I can do lol.
 

JamesRyan

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When I had a partner making games in VX Ace, then we decided to move to MV to make the sequel and he agreed to continue working on it but did absolutely nothing. After a while, I asked and the answer was: "The new engine is worse, I tried but I don't like it. I'm done".
 

Tamina

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So I think about maybe trying to partner up with people, work as part of a team - but then I'm not making the game I wanted on my own, because teamwork demands compromise. I'm not writing the story I wanted, I'm not building the dialogue trees I wanted, I'm not necessarily creating the art I wanted.

It's absolutely possible to create a team and still make games the way you wanted, if you give your teammates a strong direction and make sure they have the same vision as you before you recruit them.

Most of the time I have a story summary and main gameplay ready before I recruit anyone. Then they just work on the missing parts of the game or details.

If you recruit people before having a GDD set in stone then yes, the game direction will probably change into something else with so many people brainstorming different ideas on the same time. But if you are the project lead who implements everything into the game, you still have the final say to what goes into a project what doesn't.

I think the biggest benefits of having teammates is the process of brainstorming together makes it easier to come up with better ideas. I see it as an extra source of inspiration.
 

Hungry Moogle

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Yeah, I'll echo the art sentiments that many people here have. Personally, I do consider myself to be a somewhat competent artist but the problem is that I find that my drawing skills just don't translate to making pixel art. I've tried multiple times in the past to make my own sprites but I just find pixel art to be just so alien to me compared to drawing by hand.

The closest thing I've ever done to pixel art is some drawings in MS Paint but that's about it:
paint_drawing_01.pngpaint_drawing_02.png
I think these drawings are fairly decent when you consider that I drew them with a computer mouse using my right hand instead of my dominant left hand, but it was such a hassle just to make these fairly crude portraits and making decent pixel art is a 1,000,000 times worse.

I could probably get good at it if I applied myself more, as I do feel that I'm masochistic enough to do so, seeing as I'm a person who once spent over a month updating all the information tags on over a thousand mp3s on their computer, developing back pain from sitting in front of a computer monitor for hours on end. I figure if I'm willing subject myself to that level of tedium for such a prolonged period then there's no level of tedium I can't endure!

The problem for me though is more of an issue of pragmatism. You see, after years of fruitlessly trying to make to pixel art, I decided instead to try my hand at 3D modelling. My initial reasoning for this was that I thought that if trying to become a indie game designer didn't work out for me then 3D modelling & animation would be a more valuable skillset to fall back upon than pixel art. However, after taking a online course on how to use the 3D modelling software Blender, I've discovered that I have more knack for 3D modelling than pixel art. In contrast to my years of having zero success with pixel art, in the past five years I've been 3D modelling, I've managed to create numerous different 3D assets in various states of completion for the sidescrolling platform game I've been working on in Unreal Engine such as characters, enemies, bosses, items, not mention all the animation work I've done so far.

I don't know why 3D modelling comes more naturally to me than pixel art, I do remember being tested back in elementary school and being told I had exceptional 3D spatial reasoning skills, so maybe that has something to do with it? Anyways, the issue for me is that while I could invest my time to try and learn how to make pixel art, I feel like my time would be better spent continuing to develop my 3D modelling skills and learning how to use Unreal Engine to make my dream RPG.

I mean while I've enjoyed the years I've spent playing around with RPG Maker, I just feel like I've reached that part of my life where if I'm going to fulfill my lifelong dream of making games then I can't waste any more time on any other side endeavors, which unfortunately for me RPG Maker falls under.

I still like hang around this place despite my RPG Maker days being behind me though, as I do like seeing people discuss the various elements of RPG design and I like seeing other people's artistic endeavors such as the resources that people make to share with other people to help with their own projects.
 

ElCheffe

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For me it's the fact that RPG Maker games are often underrated just because of the engine. That might not be the makers fault, but it is quite annoying.
Honestly, everyone who is seriously developing a game in RPG maker is facing the same issues and challenges as any game dev does, just being kind of brandmarked due to the engine used is feeling odd.
 

wkdrn33

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It is difficult to use the head.

When I was young, making anything was fun, but now it's difficult.

I've also tried purchasing paid resources, but it's not as fun as it used to be...... :(
 

TheoAllen

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"I wanna make a game... wait, what do you mean? I have to make a map for my game?"

"... Ok, I guess, if I have to. Let's play test... wait, did I just forget to make a transfer player event to the previous map, and now I'm stuck? Could the maker just magically connect two maps together without having me put it manually??"
 

Eusong

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So I think about maybe trying to partner up with people, work as part of a team - but then I'm not making the game I wanted on my own, because teamwork demands compromise. I'm not writing the story I wanted, I'm not building the dialogue trees I wanted, I'm not necessarily creating the art I wanted. So then the only reasonable solution is to commission someone for what I want - but then I consider that, in all likelihood, I'm never really going to finish this project and it's going to be commissions that never see the light of day.
I hate doing art too even though I'm good at it (it's extremely draining emotionally idk why), so I've decided I'm going to find or make placeholders (no matter how awful they look) and then once literally everything else has been completed I'll commission someone else so all I have to do is replace the old art files with the new ones. Now my only weakness will be my lack of perseverance!



I'm overwhelmed and confused by designing combat in RPGMaker but thankfully all of my ideas for games so far don't involve combat lol. I dread the day I have to learn it.

I also struggle a bit with filling out things so they appear more alive and less barebones. Whether this is maps, random conversations, items you can obtain, etc. In the case of maps I also have a habit of making them large with not as much stuff to explore inside, I personally find cramped maps more interesting from a design perspective.

When I am writing conversations I think I do so very well. I've had friends and coworkers ask me for help wording their messages to other people, and it's fun to put myself in a character's position and imagine how they'd speak.

My favorite thing to do is most programming. I've done art ever since I could hold a pen but it always made me miserable. Programming is a relatively new skill I've learned and not only did it lead me to find my husband but it doesn't make me feel like I need to see a mental doctor after a long day of only it lol. So setting up mechanics, how the events function, that sort of thing.
 

tammie

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When I had a partner making games in VX Ace, then we decided to move to MV to make the sequel and he agreed to continue working on it but did absolutely nothing. After a while, I asked and the answer was: "The new engine is worse, I tried but I don't like it. I'm done".
I totally feel that, MV made a ton of changes and I am still an Ace fan.

Personally, in making RM games, I struggle with balancing battles.
 

AphoticAmaranth

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Probably art for me, every time I attempt to draw something it ends up much worse than the RTP.

Also eventing. It isn't hard, just tedious. Why isn't find and replace a thing in events/notetags >_>
 

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