I'm currently working on a game with a focus on exploration. You have a huge world map with plenty of locations to explore, including towns, mountains, caves, forests, dungeons, among others. Every area that isn't a town will vary in size but will be made with exploration in mind, meaning every area will have different paths and things to find in them, sometimes including houses and NPCs as well. The game would feature two different continents and a bunch of islands to explore. The player will have to buy a big ship in order to be able to sail towards the second continent. The main story will guide you through key locations from both continents, inciting the player to explore optional areas. It will also make you travel to an island at some point, in order to let the player know that there's other places to explore in the sea. Exploring these optional areas, the player will find more party members to recruit. These will be mostly recruited by completing quests, while some others might require more specific requirements, like meeting a character a certain number of times around the world, obtaining a treasure from a dungeon and later meeting a thief character who fights you for the treasure and then joing you, etc. While the main story would only have one character join you, it would set you up so you could recruit some people early on, but still making it optional. Every recruitable character is purely optional, and the player has to find them on their own. Whenever you entered a town, you'd be able to find some of your party members around town to talk to them and trigger events like in the Star Ocean games. Upon reaching certain levels, your party members would also give you quests that expanded their stories and gave them power-ups as well. More on characters: Spoiler Using a CTB system, the player controls the protagonist(locked) and three other characters to battle. Enemies will have levels, and barriers will be fairly common, though the player will be able to use barriers as well. There will be very few enemies inmune to status ailments, including bosses, in order to make ailments more relevant. Characters will be divided into 8 different types (types and names subject to change): Fighter: Any character with a focus in attacking and dealing damage through physical attacks. Basic stuff. Will include characters with swords, spears, maces, clubs, axes, fists, etc. Hunter: Any character with a ranged weapon focused mostly on damage, but also mixing in some buffs and debuffs. These characters are also the only ones with the ability to bypass enemy barriers. Wizard: Any character focusing on dealing damage with spells. Most wizards that use elemental magic will only be able to cast magic from that one element. Healer: Any character focusing on healing allies. Not restricted to magic-users, just anyone who excels at healing. Saboteur: Any character focusing on boosting the party and saboting the enemies. Saboteur characters use a wide range of skills to inflict powerful status ailments on enemies and buffs for allies. Just to mention a few: giving allies HP/MP Steal, increasing crit rates/dmg, generating/dispelling barriers, the usual poison/silence/etc. along with granting allies inmunities to these. Defender: Tanks. These are characters with a pathetic ATK stat but high DEF and skills focused on defending allies by taunting, creating barriers, buffing defense, and ocasionally granting auto-revive on themselves. While they're not usually meant for attacking, some of them will include attack skills scaling off DEF or something. Not sure what to do about equipment for these guys, thinking about only allowing them to equip shields, but I don't know. Berserker: The complete opposite of a Defender, a class purely focused on dealing damage, as well as redirecting damage away from them, towards other allies. All of a Berserker's skills will cost HP, and the character will deal more damage the lower their HP goes. They will take more damage from enemies compared to the other types, but will compensate with their high damage. Best coupled with a Defender and a Saboteur for mad combinations. Special: More gimmicky characters not fitting into any class fall here. Characters capable of altering turn order for allies and enemies, characters using money to fight(think Yojimbo from FFX). In contrast to other types, these characters will be mostly one-off uniques made for fun, and will probably require special party setups to be powerful. My aim is to have a high number of recruitable party members with relatively small skill sets (about 5 or 6), as well as characters of the same type having different skills, as well as some shared skills with variations in order to make them different. This is to prevent players going with the "best" characters every time, and instead encouraging them to try out various party combinations while keeping them all viable. The protagonist would probably be the exception to this. Since he would be able to change classes into various classes within the different types, and giving him a bigger skill set than any other character. His skill set would essentially be a "best of" of different effects found in those character types. In order to promote the use of various characters I would also like to make it so all characters gain exp, even when not active, though for non-active characters the exp would be reduced to about 75%; and also use a fatigue system where characters get tired and perform worse the longer they've been in the active party. They would rest by sleeping at inns or using certain items, resting like this would also grant them something like a well-rested bonus to perform better. This is still in the early stages so I'd like some feedback to improve things.