I usually like to throw the player right into the action, or at the least, quickly be confronted with a conflict of some kind, so that the battle system gets shown off fairly early. But lately, I have been working on two different games where there's a lot more story and exploration and getting to the battles takes awhile. For me, I think it gives a certain feel to a game, depending on how it's done. In Dragon Quest VII, there's around two hours or more before the first enemy shows up, and it really sets up what is a very long, emotional game. One of my games is set up like an adventure game, and the combat isn't the focus at all. It's actually more like a survival horror game that builds the unease until finally monsters show up. My other game is the one I submitted to IGMC. I had to cut out a long scene of exploration (where you explore the reverend's house) which, I think, would have been enough to break up all the exposition. I'm really wondering tho if that would have helped or if there's just too much dialogue. How long do you spend setting up the conflict before you throw the player into the conflict? How do you decide what's necessary and when and where? Is it sometimes just too much walking around, talking to people and examining things with no fighting, and if so, where's the line?