captainproton

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I'm currently working on a game which sticks mostly to standard JRPG gameplay, in the vein of Dragon Quest, Bravely Default, etc. However, there will be a couple of "chapters" which behave more like a detective game, with collection of clues, asking people questions, etc.

My question is: what is the best way to go about it? I've considered a couple of options, and each seem like they have their drawbacks.

**Switches. Asking the right people the right questions or locating evidence would activate switches.

+ this would help keep each instance of evidence/clues separate, and would make conditional branches easy.

- DEM SWITCHES. There would be a LOT of switches to keep track of, and as this game is going to end up being a decent length, I don't want to use up all my switch slots.

**Variables. Same as above, but manipulating a single variable for each investigation (Variable 001: The Missing Heart, Variable 002: The Final Curtain, etc).

+ a single variable to track for each investigation chapter would make for very tidy conditional branches, and each each clue simply adds to the variable.

- if you don't find the clues "in order" (for lack of a better phrase), the narrative might seem a bit off-kilter. Speaking to the right number of witnesses isn't the same as speaking to the correct witnesses.

**Key Items. Obviously, physical evidence could be collected as items, but even testimony and gossip could become "note" items in your inventory. Then, to de-clutter your inventory, these items are "turned over to the authorities."

+ Again, simple conditional branches, checking for particular items in your inventory.

- a LOT of items in the database, and a similar issue with the limits on how many you can use.

Any thoughts or advice?
 

Oddball

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I'd say the switch route. Because in some parts of your game, you can use a single switch to make events appear and then use self switches to turn them off for good. the beginning of my game has several event's and changes and such, and I use a single switch to control it all by turning it on and off

+ you have more room for switches

- you really have to know what your doing, and off course, this can't work for everything. You also have to check that string of the game thoroughly to make sure everything works like it's supposed to. It also makes things very linear at those points of the game 
 

bgillisp

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How about a mix of the two? Use switches to represent who you have spoken to, and key items when it makes sense for it to be a physical inventory item?
 

captainproton

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I'll have to toy around with this and see what I can put together.
 

EternalShadow

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Just FYI: you should be able to have 999 (IIRC) switches - you can increase the number you can choose from in the switch menu.
 

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