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Countyoungblood

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I'd like to open an invitation for anyone to request a review of their game to be written into this thread.

I value challenging games.
I value battle mechanics.
I value quirky characters.


If i find any logical flaws in the storyline or mechanics I will point them out.
If you want to create a challenging game I will try to break it to point out system weaknesses.

* I only know english



Skyward Sword by TheoAllen

Link: https://rpgmaker.net/games/6366/
Skyward sword makes a good first impression and you can tell a lot of time has been put into custom features and little touches that add to the expirience. The dungeon itself is dark and gives a very dungeony feel with the character exploring by torchlight never knowing whats going to be up ahead. monsters are represented by flames that roam the map and pursue you if you get close but not inevitably so, you can decide to avoid monsters or run if you're not ready to fight and you regenerate health after each fight as well as after each step you take. The bestiary and statistical information are interesting and the bestiary becomes an important tool to figuring out what to do against different monsters. after killing any specific type of monster you learn how much health it has and a bar apears under the mob in battle making planning a bit easier. you have the option to save with F5 instead of having to go into the menu which i appriciated. design wise you can tell effort has been invested.

In hard mode combat starts off keeping you on your toes and you're forced to think about everything you do which is what i enjoy in an rpg. The potential is here for a very enjoyable game however some balancing issues leave combat disjointed and jarring and occasionally outright frustrating.

weakness/resistances are tough to follow and I often found myself mystified about why a monster took very little damage from an attack so id check the bestiary..and eventually forget who was weak to what.. monsters weak to magic are problmatic since the only person capable of dealing magic damage is also keeping the party alive with magicShields and healing.

mage enemies are often very resistant to magic but the party mage is not. priests reflect the mages normal attack and the only defence against mage enemies seems to be magicshield which only makes the encounter survivable.

strategicly speaking against melee monsters flameshield is amazing but against magic enemies its decent for the damage output boost so really its an always on move. against a magic monster team the focus shifts towards getting magicshield up on turn one by using stella to apply an action potion if tp isnt already sufficient. the defensive bonus and magic reflection potential trumps anything else stella can do. when monsters often regenerate and often deal enough damage in combination to kill one or multiple characters using stella for dealing a small bit of multi-target damage doesnt do much of anything and her stun attack misses too often to even attempt it. stella quickly became the glorified item user since sol deals much more damage, lunar is overly busy being the only source of magic damage (and magic protection).

enemies weak to magic are often strong against other damage forms so the party gets pinched. melee attacks dont deal much damage so the fight gets drawn out and the only source of magic damage(lunar) has to be split between keeping the party alive and dealing magic damage. too many eggs in one basket.

potions are way stronger than the mages heal spell since regeneration nets you more hp overall. I managed to beat the first boss on hard at level 4 in 23 turns by relying on potions flamecloaks and magicshields and not caring that stella stayed dead for most of the battle.

In normal mode the same tactic worked at level 2 in 14 turns. compared to the enemies that imediately follow this boss it was a cakewalk.


shades for example take very little damage yet regenerate most of their health in a single turn through draining. you might use multiple potions/revives to survive the battle and be one shot away from ending it just to watch the shade regenerate all of your damage in one move. ironically soleils best response to the shade is to guard since the shade counterattacks sols melee hit with a drain that restores most of its health.

this is the direction combat started to move towards as monsters became more magic central using spells you yourself dont have access to. My multi-target options either divide the damage or deal fire damage that equates into about 1/5 of what 1 mage enemy can do in hard mode and you fight 4 of them at one time.if 3 shaman decided to cast fireblast on the same turn you'd take more damage than you have in health before you could respond RNG mercy is the only thing stopping that.

similarly the priest monster has a multitarget heal which restores pretty much the whole enemy side so yeah kill him first but if you miss he regenerates and the other enemies attack you for basically free. this priest also reflects the party mage's magic attack and fireball.

wraiths are resistant to just about everything and hit you way harder than you can hit them. oh and they drain health as well.

in one treasure chest there is a monster called a pit demon. it attacks twice each round for huge magic damage even in normal mode. if you kill it you get nothing but normal exp and chances are you will use items to survive the battle so the best strategy here is dont open the chest you get nothing even if you win.

The problem with all of this combined is each battle starts to become a net loss. to survive a battle against 4 mages with multi-target high damage spells you either use potions or revives that cost more than you gain in gold to replace the items. and whats worse is the 20% health regen +1hp per second is basically nothing when you end fights barely alive with 200/800 HP you will find a new monster before you regenerate enough for it to matter unless you run in circles for a good while.

even counting expirience as invaluable the battles themselves dont equate challenge:reward wise. fighting 3 kobolds with auto-attacks yeilds similar exp to fighting four mages that repeatedly melt your face off.

at first i tried hard which was enjoyably tough up until the 4 mage troops that cost me more than i gained.
I restarted in normal mode to try to get further in the game.. but met the same issue. pit demon actually seemed worse in normal mode somehow.

the game has a ton of potential and the developer is obviously talented but i cant push any further until these balance issues are resolved its just too frustrating. If the game is updated I will revisit it becuse initially it was really fun.


developer notes:
new game/continue screen is very pleasing to look at but I didnt get to see it until loading the game.
load game f8 doesnt work inside battle
can cast heal on dead target with zero effect. frustrating and avoidable.
aimed shot doesnt seem to boost damage much and falls off after one turn
mage enemies take very little damage from magic but mage character takes a ton of damage from magic.
walked by store to first boss without realizing the store was a store. a more traditional guy with a cart would of been more intuitive.
found and killed the pit demon and got 45 gold? no treasure?
Traps are frustrating and annoying. not hard to avoid but when you do hit one and lose health its hard to get back.
missed entirely with sols solar strike. spent resource and needed a trump against tough enemies. missed entirely. frustrating.
died from a troll counterattack in one shot. died for attacking the enemy.
the duration for flaming cloak and magic shield isnt given anywhere
fireball costs 20mp with a 3 turn cooldown to often deal less damage than sols auto-attack
music becomes a bit repeditive after a while
skills unusable from often starving for resource or on cooldown
marked status fell off before attacking again? and didnt notice any damage boost to other characters
i deal 10 damage to a wraith and it deals 500 damage to each of my characters. i use my revive items just to get it almost dead then it heals almost all of its health in one single turn.
auto-saved over my hard file when i tried to save normal game..........

test
 
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CleanWater

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Oh well, if you don't mind learning a new language to review it... :guffaw:

 

TheoAllen

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An extra breakdown of my game mechanic is always welcomed https://rpgmaker.net/games/6366/
Not sure if this will be allowed by mod though, let's hope it's allowed
Do note that my game is not focused on story.
 

Countyoungblood

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bgillisp

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Well, I have no issues with it as long as everyone stays tactful and respects each other.
 

lianderson

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You can review mine. Link is in the signature.

Send me a pm if you're interested.
 

Yitzi Litt

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you've probably got more than enough on your plate already, but I'll add mine to the pile just the same ;)
 

Countyoungblood

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Updated first post added review for skyward sword.

You can review mine. Link is in the signature.
Send me a pm if you're interested.
will do, you're next in line.

you've probably got more than enough on your plate already, but I'll add mine to the pile just the same ;)
its all good Im going by post order so its just becoming a Que line.
 

TheoAllen

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Hey, thank you for the whole review. You've pointed some points that was never been pointed out by any other players which is interesting!
I don't want this as an excuse though, but it was my first game that's been completed, and I did it 4-5 years ago. I'm aware the idea I come up with has potentital, but I just couldn't maximize the potential yet that time.

As for difficulty setting, I used these mindset when designed these two
> Normal difficulty should be doable even if you didn't find any equipment
> Hard mode requires you to find equipment to make it more bearable. Without equip, it just plain hard.
I initially test everything in normal mode which work just fine in normal mode, and hard mode might be too much. All actors initially has the same attributes, but it will be modified by any accessories you will be finding through dungeon. However, I will reconsider it.

There's an LP videos that covers hard mode though if you're interested.

Shades and wraith (if you discovered them in the first floor) was designed to be hard. Because those are not supposed to be encountered in low level. The reward for the trouble though, is almost mandatory for hard mode.

Speaking of shades, they can only counters melee attack. They may get troublesome by keep draining your HP. But here is the twist. It sounds like you never explore what is Sol's blackhole force do. The skill is counted as magical attack so it will never be counterattacked. Aside from that, it has debuff to lower enemy defense and prevent them from moving twice. Shades are supposed to be countered by lunar's attack, fireball, and that particular sol's skill. They will be quite effective to them and they has no magic reflection. This also a problem solver for pit demons mini boss

Speaking of pit demons
They are supposed to be an encounter of later stages. I brought it up to earlier stages as a surprise. They may sounds like a miniboss while actually not. Which is why I never thought about giving rewards more than just exp. But I will reconsider it.

Marking shot damage boost is for Stella herself. After looked back at what's wrong with my database, I just realized I typed a wrong skill description. There have been two people mistaken how the state works. The other one who thought it worked the way you think but they believed it worked, while you were actually noticed it has no difference. That left me two options. Correcting the skill description, or remake the skill to meet people's expectation.

Thank you again, I appreciate the whole effort of typing this and keep bearing with my design, with these reviews I already thought of some balance patch, and it will be including less rng-y. A missed attack that spend resources could be frustrating and I agree with that.

What was the last floor you stopped playing? Did you encounter the second boss?

auto-saved over my hard file when i tried to save normal game..........
Now this one is funny. Maybe I should take a consideration into creating a confirmation button during saves?
 
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Countyoungblood

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Hey, thank you for the whole review. You've pointed some points that was never been pointed out by any other players which is interesting!
I don't want this as an excuse though, but it was my first game that's been completed, and I did it 4-5 years ago. I'm aware the idea I come up with has potentital, but I just couldn't maximize the potential yet that time.

As for difficulty setting, I used these mindset when designed these two
> Normal difficulty should be doable even if you didn't find any equipment
> Hard mode requires you to find equipment to make it more bearable. Without equip, it just plain hard.
I initially test everything in normal mode which work just fine in normal mode, and hard mode might be too much. All actors initially has the same attributes, but it will be modified by any accessories you will be finding through dungeon. However, I will reconsider it.

There's an LP videos that covers hard mode though if you're interested.

Shades and wraith (if you discovered them in the first floor) was designed to be hard. Because those are not supposed to be encountered in low level. The reward for the trouble though, is almost mandatory for hard mode.

Speaking of shades, they can only counters melee attack. They may get troublesome by keep draining your HP. But here is the twist. It sounds like you never explore what is Sol's blackhole force do. The skill is counted as magical attack so it will never be counterattacked. Aside from that, it has debuff to lower enemy defense and prevent them from moving twice. Shades are supposed to be countered by lunar's attack, fireball, and that particular sol's skill. They will be quite effective to them and they has no magic reflection. This also a problem solver for pit demons mini boss

Speaking of pit demons
They are supposed to be an encounter of later stages. I brought it up to earlier stages as a surprise. They may sounds like a miniboss while actually not. Which is why I never thought about giving rewards more than just exp. But I will reconsider it.

Marking shot damage boost is for Stella herself. After looked back at what's wrong with my database, I just realized I typed a wrong skill description. There have been two people mistaken how the state works. The other one who thought it worked the way you think but they believed it worked, while you were actually noticed it has no difference. That left me two options. Correcting the skill description, or remake the skill to meet people's expectation.

Thank you again, I appreciate the whole effort of typing this and keep bearing with my design, with these reviews I already thought of some balance patch, and it will be including less rng-y. A missed attack that spend resources could be frustrating and I agree with that.

What was the last floor you stopped playing? Did you encounter the second boss?


Now this one is funny. Maybe I should take a consideration into creating a confirmation button during saves?
i wanted to get further which is why i switched to normal mode after struggling in hard but i met similar resistance. I did try to explore to try to find more equipment to give me more of an edge but only found the +35 evasion item which didnt help against my problem of mage enemies.

I beat the first boss in both normal and hard then couldnt proceed much further. Im pretty excited to try the update it really is a fun game.

edit: oh and about saves id suggest autosaving to whatever slot the player loaded from and prompting them the first time
 

Yitzi Litt

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Updated first post added review for skyward sword.



will do, you're next in line.



its all good Im going by post order so its just becoming a Que line.
Thank you!
Always looking for some good honest critique :)
 

Countyoungblood

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Update: cant add wooden oceans review to the top post.. not sure why. will place it here for now until problem is resolved.

Wooden Ocean by Lianderson

The team behind Wooden ocean is clearly ambitious. the game world is huge and the list of unique spells and skills is staggering. when you first start you're prompted to pick two elements for your main character. these elements alter your stats and grant a list of spells to learn from. your other two characters also get to choose an element to start out with. there are.. a LOT of elements. skills and spells are learned through a menu called "learn" and different weapon types give you different skill choices. you're given some points to spend (AP) towards learning skills/spells to aid you in your adventure. any skill you choose to learn uncovers a new skill and each weapon/element starts with 10 or so skills.. I can only guess the game must host several hundred skills/spells concidering this. I quickly expirienced decision fatigue and restarted multiple times after seeing what each element gave me skill/formula wise
on my first attempt of the game i spent a few hours trying to decipher the skill formulas to comprehend what each spell would do. the formulas are complicated and depend on multiple stats. some weapons use attack+dexterity to deal damage others use attack+defense.. it was all confusing. I started doing the math on my current stats and found a skill to focus on.
Daggers:lunge: (ATK * 2) + (DEX * 2) - monster defense.
from everything i looked through this delt the most damage especially concidering that many of the early game monsters have 1 defense (which ruins attacks that ignore defense)
especially when paired with an availible skill: contemplate + 50% DEX and spirit.
the funny thing about dexterity is its also what determines your TP regeneration rate so the cost of lunge (60/100 TP) quickly becomes negligible since often the character regenerates more than 60 TP per turn and if not you can always use contemplate for 10tp and boost the power of your next 3 lunges.
this is good an all if i hadnt spent 5 hours wandering around looking to progress the story. I eventually come across a crystal which acts as a teleport to areas.. including ghost town to which i hadnt been yet. ghost town is your own town to manage and you upgrade different ghost crews to improve your town. i didnt get too far with it since its time dependant. at 5 hours though i was able to get a decent distance into the mine. which is an interesting part of ghost town.. you take a golem with you into the mine and use him as a character to attack the different stationary monsters. winning battles here rewards you with a ton of gold and or much stronger weapons/armor.
by this point i'd already equipped each of my characters with daggers and had been going around lunging at everything. with bonus dexterity from wind and two dex rings I managed to deal as much damage as the mine golem at one point.
after killing everything i could and assigning all the ghosts i could to the mine i wandered off until i found myself in an area with a save point. i saved, and proceeded to the western ocean and got killed almost imediately.
after reloading my game i was stuck and had to restart.

i read through the documentation on the game and discovered what the different difficulty settings ment. as time passes monsters get stronger.i was punished with stronger monsters for taking the time to learn the attack formulas. the game doesnt just reward grinding it actually forces it.
if you dont keep getting stronger as time goes by the monsters will eventually out pace you. this to me is not a good idea since taking the time to do puzzles or talk to people or do anything besides killing things is actually hurting me. but all the same i decided to try again.
this time i started off knowing what i wanted to do. daggers and lunging as often as possible to raise my level faster than the monsters grew. I ran around like a maniac stabbing everything i could and it worked a little too well. combined with a earth wall of +50% physical damage reduction very few things got in my way and if they did i'd just reload and go stab something else. this was entertaining enough but in the mines i again saved and got a black screen that persisted when i reloaded. very frustrating stuff.
I cant bring myself to start over again and spend so much time just to lose it ive already got about 8 combined hours in broken save files. the maps are big for little benefit. to get from A to B you have to wander around multiple maps of wooded areas scattered with treasure chests full of 22 gold. the maps themselves are filled with paths you cant immedietly tell are paths so bumping against the walls is the best way to find things. after you've found all your tiny treasures the huge maps only exist to cause persistant lag and keep you lost. there are tons of paths and most of them lead to more woods.
normally in big open games players are granted the ability to teleport from any given point (at least if not in a dungeon) to set points of interest (maybe just ones they've been to once before) yet here its only a handful of teleport points and you have to be at one to teleport. Id be happier if i could at least teleport back to where i started so i can try going a different way instead of ending up deep in the woods or killed by monsters i couldnt handle yet.
the game puts you between a rock and a hard place in that as time progresses monsters get stronger but most of your time will be spent traveling and/or being lost. indirectly you're being punished by spending time doing anything but gaining exp to keep up with monsters.the best strategy for any puzzles you encounter becomes:
1.learn the puzzle.
2. reload your game and enter the solution

I would play the game again but only if travel becomes a lot less tedious.. either through less maps, smaller maps, or teleportation from anywhere. I AM interested in trying to play the "get stronger faster than the monster can" game but only if i dont have to spend hours learning how to get to places but maybe that's just my personal taste.

developer notes:
when choosing elements hovering over each element could tell you what that element is/does rather than having to blindly select and return. tedius.
difficulty setting could be done similarly and take less time to interpret/setup by using more of what is expected: a menu.
amelia says murda so often it becomes annoying
frost armor says its for one ally but applies to the whole party
found a map on some guys wall.. didnt help me know where i was or where i could go or anything.
found a rock that said +1 population. im assuming its a gravestone. would of been a nice opportunity for meaninful dialog.. "oh youre a ghost? come join me blah blah"
enjoyed the block puzzle in the mine but was lucky to realize you could interact with the one block type. could be explained.
when choosing weither or not to learn a spell/skill the options are: AP point total or cancel. yes/no would be more intuitive.
3d teleport interface is neat but a standard map with location pins(think fly in pokemon games)would be easier to help the player know where they are and make navigating easier. would like to see more teleport crystals spent half an hour looking for one.
after dying the party is returned to the last save point with 1 health and less gold. rather than spending time or potions to restore health the best strategy is to reload the game from this exact point but with full health and gold. might as well just save the player the annoyance.
ghosts in ghost town could be used to teach the player about the different mechanics of the town.
started the game wanting to go straight to the ghost town. took me half an hour to finally find a teleport.
high dexterity makes it possible to lunge every single turn.
low dex (1) makes weapons like maces tough to even use regular attacks with and those attacks deal less damage.
eventually turned off the background music all together became repeditive.


typos:
upgrading scientists in the ghost town ">euipment< level:1 -> 2"
after exiting the hunters lodge alex says "i just remember hunters being >that< us demons would worry about. typo?
mason jahon tells violet to "becareful" with no space inbetween.
at the church after amalie eats the priest she says "oh the >preist<"
alex says "dont worry it will be a month before she can do that >agian<"


bugs:
sewer shadow shows "weakpoint" for holy but takes 1 damage from it.
black screen after exiting to the left from the masons house. went left.. tried to go back and couldnt. went right and black screen.
saved in mines. got a black screen after but could open menu with escape. reloading the game black screen again. cant proceed.
when selecting learn in the menu you arent prompted to select a character and the last character you chose for anything else is brought up.
you'd have to check a characters status.. then go back to learn to look at their learn information.
loading the game from the western ocean transition savepoint breaks both doors out of the area. cant get out to proceed. will have to restart.


missing information:
dagger:doublestrike: is it supposed to hit twice? does not say anything.
toxic ring adds 3 dex to one character and 2 dex to another. is it adding a percentage? doesnt say.
greatsword:raise weapon: does not specify how many turns
dagger:quick attack: missing "first to attack" in description
metal knife/fence mending iron and blood metal all cost 1,2,3 AP to learn. intentional?

@Tome571 Looking at yours now.
 

FluffexStudios

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Do you do review for RPG maker horror games? We want to get more feedback for our game Stitched. Let us know, our game is in the signature below.

Cheers!
 

Countyoungblood

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Do you do review for RPG maker horror games? We want to get more feedback for our game Stitched. Let us know, our game is in the signature below.

Cheers!
Any flavor is fine though I will be slow for the next month or so just started a job working 12 hour shifts. I will play through as much as i can but if something breaks my save I tend to lose patience quickly. Any other bugs glitches or whatever are fine Il report to you whatever i find.
 

Kes

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@Gravemaster Countyoungblood has not been on the site since December, so you might not get a response.
 

SpaceBot

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I think he took a break from the site. I know him outside of rpg maker, I'll let him know you added it incase he was still taking interest in the site @Gravemaster
Think work/life just got really busy for him.
 

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