Legend of Dragoon's BS with some modifications

Discussion in 'Game Mechanics Design' started by Neo Soul Gamer, Apr 21, 2014.

  1. Neo Soul Gamer

    Neo Soul Gamer Veteran Veteran

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    Just wanted to see what kind of reception this would get. Feedback is definitely appreciated.

    After going through some testing in RMVXA, I've managed to sucessfully replicate the "Addition" feature in Legend of Dragoon's battle system.

    For those who aren't familiar with it, it's a system where you attack by hitting a designated button multiple times at specific intervals. If you complete the sequence successfully, then you end up dealing more damage while accumulating points to transform into a more powerful character.

    Personally, I've always been a fan of timed hits. Super Mario RPG was always one of my favorites growing up. Legend of Dragoon seemed to expand on that concept a bit more, which I also liked.

    What I DIDN'T like about this game, was the fact that you could only choose one type of attack to bring into battle with you, and so you would end up using the same attack over and over until you felt the need to change it. Older attacks would also quickly become obsolete as new ones became available.

    I hope to eliminate that problem by giving unique bonuses and penalties to each attack. For bonuses, it'll most likely be states that can be applied to the enemy upon completing a sequence of attacks. As for penalties, stronger attacks will have a higher cost to use. 

    Also, instead of accumulating points to transform, I will instead use a sort of Limit Break system with TP. Each time you successfully time a hit in an attack sequence, the TP bar will fill. Once it reaches 100%, a specific skill will be available.

    To sum everything up, I feel my modifications will make the battle system more rewarding for people who strive to complete the attack sequences. It'll also eliminate the monotony of attacking with the best one available, as you'll be at a disadvantage if you neglect the older skills that can apply different states/debuffs.

    Any thoughts? Would you add or change anything about the concept I've outlined? Do you see this battle system as being enjoyable?
     
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  2. servantb7

    servantb7 Servantb7 Veteran

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    That's awesome. I always wanted something similar to the 'timed hits' mechanic from Mario RPG. Did you do it through eventing or scripting?
     
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  3. Uzuki

    Uzuki Kawaii on the streets, Senpai in the sheets Veteran

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    As simple as this sounds this can add a whole new layer to the battle system. I would thoroughly enjoy a system like this.
     
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  4. Neo Soul Gamer

    Neo Soul Gamer Veteran Veteran

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    It's all done through an odd combination of scripts.

    That's great to hear. Although that's not all there is to it. I'm also going to try and replicate the "Counter" feature. It's where a different indicator will randomly appear at different parts of the attack sequence, and requires you to hit a different button in order to keep the chain going. If you fail to hit it, then the enemy will execute a counter attack. This hasn't been tested as thoroughly as the basics, so no guarantees. The way I have it planned, I'm 90% sure it'll work.

    Another dynamic I want to add is something like the Press Turn Battle system. However, instead of turns being shared, each actor will have his/her own turn count. You can use up all the turns in one phase, or bank them for the next phase to plan a strategy in anticipation of the enemy's next move. It'll "kinda" mimic the Press Turn System. Striking weaknesses will yield a TP bonus so that you can fill the bar quicker. One of the default TP skills will allow you to gain an extra turn. So again, not identical, but the concept is similar. 

    The reason I chose this modification is because in SMT, I found that phases were very repetitive once you figured out a weakness. I thought it was just me, but even as I go back and watch Let's Play videos, I was seeing the same turn phases with little to no variation. I'm hoping my modification will get rid of that repetitiveness by offering more rewards for using a good strategy.

     That's the entire battle system in a nutshell.
     
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  5. Neo Soul Gamer

    Neo Soul Gamer Veteran Veteran

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    I hope it's ok that I bump this. I'm looking for a bit more feedback with regards to changes to the original LOD battle system. Wondering if people can brainstorm and throw a few things out there.
     
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  6. Harmill

    Harmill Veteran Veteran

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    I mostly agree with your proposed changes to the battle system. LoD's battles were a very cool idea but I always felt like they executed it poorly.

    So I agree that each 'Addition' needs to have more unique properties to set them apart from other Additions. In LoD, it was only Damage, SP Gain, and Difficulty to complete the Addition. Inflicting status ailments is a good idea, but also adding elemental properties, or inflicting debuffs could also work. I'm not sure about adding penalties though. There were no hard 'costs' to use an Addition before, and I don't know that costs would fit with the battle system either. The 'cost' always felt like the risk of failing the Addition, and the better Additions were always more difficult to complete. It was a risk-reward choice and you were rewarded for getting better at the game and mastering the timing for the strongest Additions.

    My concern is that if you give too many Additions to a single party member, it will become overwhelming to try and keep the proper timing for all of them in your head at once. I remember when I played LoD, having to readjust to old Additions that I had previously mastered, but hadn't used in a while. Imagine how annoying that could be if one party member at all times has 5+ viable Additions that he could be using and changing on a per-turn basis. Then add on Party Members 2 and 3 (or 4) and that's a LOT of unique timing challenges to memorize and juggle at once. Maybe it's not actually that hard to do - I haven't tried - but it's something to keep in mind. I might say that each character learns a small amount of Additions, each with unique properties, and then its up to the player to decide which character has the potential he needs or wants. Want someone who can inflict Poison or deal Wind damage? Well that would be Party Member 2.

    Another thing I didn't like about LoD was that an Addition did only a fraction of its potential damage if you failed the Addition. If the Addition has 5 button presses, and you were successful at 4 but failed the last, the damage you lose is HUGE. The game doesn't register damage on EACH strike, it's entirely based on completing the entire attack string. It would have been nice if you did damage for each strike you did, so that you don't lose so much damage if you fail the combo one button press away. The penalty for failing should more be that you don't get the special property added to the attack - the Additions would only be able to inflict their status ailments if you complete the Addition.
     
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  7. kerbonklin

    kerbonklin Hiatus King Veteran

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    I definitely hope you can expand and perfect the system. I tried giving Legend of Dragoon a play-chance, but I got pretty bored because of the repetitiveness from Additions. Also for the fact that I could spam guard as a form of free healing because I barely took damage.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 19, 2014
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  8. Neo Soul Gamer

    Neo Soul Gamer Veteran Veteran

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    That's a fantastic point, and you've made me reconsider the "cost" of skills altogether. This is why I needed more input. I was getting tunnel vision and focusing more on the mechanics of the Addition system and not focusing enough on balancing the skills. Thanks for that.

    Another great point. And your concern makes perfect sense. Having access to all skills could be too much... Maybe I should compromise? Instead of being able to bring only one "Addition" skill into battle, maybe I allow two to be equipped? Just throwing ideas out there... My main concern is the monotony of doing the same attack over and over until you decide to change.

    One thought that I had was to change the progression of the Additions. Instead of attacks getting more powerful and more difficult... I minimize the variation in power and difficulty, and expand on the bonuses and effects that each skill would have. This could possibly add more to the strategic element.

    Lastly, I definitely agree with different characters having unique traits (a la Chrono Trigger).

    Wow... What you just wrote is pretty much identical to what I have in my project outline. It was the first thing I wanted to change, and I'm happy to say that I've done it successfully. Each timed hit in the attack string will register damage. I've also added a combo counter so that you know the total damage you've dealt, along with the amount of hits. There are no bugs here. I can confirm this is working 100%. And there will be an extra effect for completing the string.

    Exactly. I spoke to my concerns of repetitiveness when I quoted Harmill's second point. That's the main challenge for me. What I'm hoping to do is make each battle unique instead of having endless random encounters. In effect, each battle will be like a standard boss battle; they'll all be meaningful in some way. 

    Thanks again for the feedback. You can't imagine how much the discussion helps.
     
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