Sullien

Dev Wannabe
Veteran
Joined
Apr 5, 2015
Messages
32
Reaction score
74
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RM2k3
When you beat a powerful boss yet the cutscene 2 seconds later shows your team getting wrecked and the boss unscathed
 

ScorchedGround

Blizzards most disappointed fan (More than ever)
Veteran
Joined
Apr 12, 2020
Messages
751
Reaction score
1,132
First Language
German
Primarily Uses
RMMV
When you beat a powerful boss yet the cutscene 2 seconds later shows your team getting wrecked and the boss unscathed

I don't know if that exactly qualifies as a game mechanic,
but I 100% agree.

It doesn't make any sense, not even with video game logic.

Either let me win the damn fight after defeating the boss or just make the boss unbeatable.
But don't break continuity or my immersion.
 

ericv00

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Nov 10, 2020
Messages
353
Reaction score
607
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I don't know if that exactly qualifies as a game mechanic,
but I 100% agree.

It doesn't make any sense, not even with video game logic.

Either let me win the damn fight after defeating the boss or just make the boss unbeatable.
But don't break continuity or my immersion.
It can work if the boss is depicted as obviously toying with you, and the equivalent of 'beating the boss' is "W-wha? You actually scratched me, you horrible little creature! Enough messing around..."

And it is important you don't have the boss defeated animation or graphic effect, you just hard-end the fight.

That gives you the fight you have to successfully complete and preserves the story beat of the party getting their butts handed to them.
 

pawsplay

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Mar 29, 2012
Messages
495
Reaction score
265
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I would describe that as a mechanic, and not a good one. If the fight you present doesn't really work in your combat system, what is the game really about? Why is that fight even there, if it doesn't add to the essential gameplay of the game?
 

Shikamon

The Fateless One
Veteran
Joined
Feb 4, 2017
Messages
184
Reaction score
246
First Language
Indonesia
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
- no option/item to disable encounter temporary ( random or visual ), most FF games are like that.
- no foreshadowing when you forced to lose.
- puzzle room that still have enemy encounter, its annoying.
- mandatory mini-games to advanced the plot. I mean like some mini games as side activities but if it's the only way to went next chapter, I rather give up.
- complex requirement to unlock upgraded classes, like kill hundred beasts type monster, or find rare loot. that's padding.
- leveled magic skills, I don't think its work unless on MMORPG.
- bare useful debuff magic or too much conditional effect.
 

Eusong

Jack of all trades, master of none
Veteran
Joined
Dec 4, 2018
Messages
58
Reaction score
117
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
When a game tries to give you a "self insert" character by making them the silent protagonist, and yet you aren't given any customization options or choices to make. You didn't give me a self insert, you gave me a mute character with their own personality. Just let them talk, I can enjoy playing as someone else.
Though the only thing worse is a self insert where you can make it look and act like you except for one specific scene where they end up doing something horrificly out of character that doesn't follow the choice you made. I'm looking at you Fallout 4...Fix your dialogue options to match what's actually said!

And yes...as everyone probably agrees, stealth sections suck in otherwise non-stealth games. However I'd argue that it isn't the stealth-style gameplay itself that's the problem drawing you out of what you're used to, but rather the games that do this don't actually program it correctly and thus it's a pain in the butt even if you love stealth gameplay. If your entire game is stealth of course you'll have made enemy detection work properly. But if it's just a small section, chances are you didn't bother to even try.
 

Hadria

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Aug 29, 2020
Messages
89
Reaction score
155
First Language
Spanish
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I feel there is no bad mechanics, but poorly implemented ones, any mechanic can shine if done correctly, that being said what ends up annoying me are:

Random spammable encounters where you end up mashing through them mindlessly and brings nothing to the gameplay.

Mechanics that are just there so "you can keep playing", those mechanics punish you but doesnt bring any reward to the table (as badly implemented durability, weight or energy systems). If I can't justify a mechanic when in design phase beyond "slow/punish the player" then it's time to go back to the drawing table.

Grinding for the sake of being able to progress, at that point I feel most players just overlevel and end up removing the challenge off the game.

Curiously these are some of the mechanics I like the most when properly implemented, such as strategic/meaningful combat, mechanics that reward you for not breaking the game or farming materials for meaningful crafting.
 

Milennin

"With a bang and a boom!"
Veteran
Joined
Feb 7, 2013
Messages
3,057
Reaction score
2,326
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I don't know if that exactly qualifies as a game mechanic,
but I 100% agree.

It doesn't make any sense, not even with video game logic.

Either let me win the damn fight after defeating the boss or just make the boss unbeatable.
But don't break continuity or my immersion.

Nah, if the boss is unbeatable you'll have players disliking it because it feels like a waste of their time. If you make it a cutscene only, you'll have players disliking it because they want to play your game, not watch it. It's damned if you do, and damned if you don't.
 

ts50

️‍⚧️ Proudly trans! ️‍⚧️
Veteran
Joined
Nov 10, 2016
Messages
2,518
Reaction score
4,802
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Lots of grinding.

Limited inventory space.

Crafting.

Difficult battles without healing at the end. One of the sample games here at the rpgmakerweb.com website has battles in which you can take a lot of damage easily, but all your stats are healed after each battle. I really, really like that.

Pretend fights, where you have to lose. FF9 has this with Beatrix and it drives me crazy
 

HOLYMOTHER

MagiCat
Veteran
Joined
Feb 2, 2022
Messages
61
Reaction score
233
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
To be playing a game, immersed, is to be in a hypnotic trance (à la Dhāraṇā). Any mechanic that deepens the trance is good, anything else is bad. For example, complex crafting systems, where you feel compelled to look at a wiki or a FAQ or whatever, takes your attention away from the game -- unless the game is solely about crafting -- and terminates the trance.

Most good mechanics, like a hypnotic induction, force or at least allow the player to subsist on a level of thought lower than the conscious. Like rhythm games, or MMOs where you only have worry about doing your rotation in combat. This is why cerebral, story-based games with complex characters are less active than FPSes and so on.
 

RCXGaming

Champion of Brightmoon Tor
Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2019
Messages
584
Reaction score
1,271
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
To be playing a game, immersed, is to be in a hypnotic trance (à la Dhāraṇā). Any mechanic that deepens the trance is good, anything else is bad. For example, complex crafting systems, where you feel compelled to look at a wiki or a FAQ or whatever, takes your attention away from the game -- unless the game is solely about crafting -- and terminates the trance.

Most good mechanics, like a hypnotic induction, force or at least allow the player to subsist on a level of thought lower than the conscious. Like rhythm games, or MMOs where you only have worry about doing your rotation in combat. This is why cerebral, story-based games with complex characters are less active than FPSes and so on.

I remember reading an article someone posted here a while back that was pretty interesting - if your game is about charming the player, your mechanics should reflect that.

If you make a mechanic too complex or a section too difficult, you risk alienating people who are there to enjoy other aspects of the game.
 

freakytapir

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 13, 2014
Messages
230
Reaction score
243
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
You know, just adding to the list: F'cking Quick time events at the end of a hard section that force you to replay the entire thing if you fail.
I mean, the latest FF XIV expansion was great, but that one quest ... twenty minutes of stealth and scavenging resources, only to end in a ****ing hard button mash of a QTE. You fail? Restart and replay 20 minutes.
That said, the narrative pay-off was worth it.

You know what? Stealth sections in non stealth games. Add that to the list.

And don't get me started on everything in Skyrim. Such a ****ing horribly designed game. (Morrowind is even worse). I level my blacksmithing, so all the enemies get harder? Huh? Why?
I try a varied build, and grind a bit, but the world just gets harder?
Yeah, fock level scaling.

FF 8's Draw magic from enemies to use it?
Maybe tolerable, but then they allow me to equip It to stats, that's just ... So, My hard won Magic, if I use it, my stats get lower? Who signed off on that?
 

Hadria

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Aug 29, 2020
Messages
89
Reaction score
155
First Language
Spanish
Primarily Uses
RMMV
And don't get me started on everything in Skyrim. Such a ****ing horribly designed game. (Morrowind is even worse). I level my blacksmithing, so all the enemies get harder? Huh? Why?
I try a varied build, and grind a bit, but the world just gets harder?
Yeah, fock level scaling.
Just wanted to note oblivion's auto-scaling was even worst, I remember that bandit trying to rob me for 20 septims while he was wearing full daedric armor, or going to do kvatch main quest at high level and finding it full of atronach and daedra to the point where u could only rush the quest.
 
Last edited:

Tai_MT

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
May 1, 2013
Messages
5,792
Reaction score
5,439
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Just wanted to note oblivion's auto-scaling was even worst, I remember that bandit trying to rob me for 20 septims while he was wearing full daedric armor, of goint to do kvatch main quest at high level and finding it full of atronach and daedra to the point where u could only rush the quest.

The auto-scaling was hilarious. Especially with how BROKEN you could make it. Put all your "primary skills" into things you'll never use. So, things that will basically never level up. Combat Skills should all be secondary. So, as you level combat... you become insanely overpowered at level 1... and nothing ever poses a threat to you.

The downside, of course, is that you need to level up sometime, as you're just wasting "point increases" by over-leveling in such a fashion. But, that may not matter as you run around with 100 in your weapon skill, still at level 1, crafting high end Daedric equipment, and still fighting all the "level 1" monsters.

I mean, you've effectively broken the game at that point.

I was only about 4 hours into a character before I figured out the "scaling" mechanic and then went back and made a new character to utterly break the whole game. No guide required. The "scaling" is essentially a "newbie trap". It exists because newbies will pick all the skills they want to use a lot as "primary skills" and then the game will get harder much faster as they gain levels and gain skills.

What's even funnier?

After having played Oblivion... Skyrim was EVEN EASIER for me to break, and I never had to create a new character at all! I broke that game before hitting even level 10!

You don't level up until you select that you want to. So, nothing scales up at all until you decide it should. With that in mind, your SKILLS still go up. Granted, you don't get the "perks", but most of the perks are basically garbage ANYWAY, and aren't really worth picking up.

So, my goal was pretty simple once I saw how the first 3 levels I gained worked.

Level up Blacksmithing and Enchanting as quickly as possible. Don't bother taking the level up yet. Once I had a steady supply of "near endgame" materials, take a few levels so that I could dump them into learning how to make the endgame equipment. This put me into Dragon Armor at Level 10. From that point on, I stockpiled EVERY level until I needed it. Granted, getting the materials for the Dragon equipment were difficult at Level 10 (I think their minimum level was 20 or something? Very difficult to kill, and it scales up with you once you hit a certain threshold). It took a bit of a grind for me to get there. But, sneak and archery skills were pretty useful for those early game difficulty jumps.

So why was I saving my level ups and not using them?

2 reasons.

1. The world scales with my level, and I saw no need to have it scale with me, so long as I didn't need high quality drops at all. Likewise, XP seemed based on "use" rather than "kill". So, aside from perk points, there was no real value in leveling up (You don't need more HP, MP, or Stamina if everything remains level 10 forever while you wield endgame equipment that ensures you only ever take 20% of the damage that would've been inflicted and that your weapons kill everything in 1 hit anyway!).

2. Leveling up could be used to completely refill your health, stamina, and magicka. In the instances where I'd run into trouble and was hit with a particularly brutal or difficult fight, I could simply spend a level up to refill my health, stamina, and magicka, and be back in fighting form. Potions and spells for healing? Why bother? A level up could restore me, INSTANTLY back to full. The other methods took time.

So, I basically steamrolled the CRAP out of that game. Far easier to do than even Oblivion.

I did expend most of my "emergency levels" into enchanting though. Because the better enchants I could put on my equipment, the MORE powerful I'd be. I didn't even start "seriously leveling" until I'd basically beaten most of the game. That is, did most of the main questlines. So, I blew through level 20 to 70 in pretty short order. At which point, I was so overpowered and had done every quest in the game (Yes, I did, I looked them up online to be sure!) that I was bored. So, I looked up how to get "God Equipment". The exploit for essentially making equipment that would one-shot everything in the game and armor with such powerful enchants, that it broke other aspects of the game. So, you know... level 80 guy instant killing dragons with Arrows and watching them ragdoll across the map from the excess damage... while being undetectable no matter what (just crouch to instantly end any fight and get sneak attacks!), with something like 100K Magicka, Stamina, and Health all at once.

Which let me cakewalk all the DLC as it was released... EXCEPT the final boss of one of the expansions... because he had scripted "phases". I would basically softlock myself by doing so much damage to him with the initial hit, that he'd be stuck "charging up" for the next phase and be utterly invincible forever. I had to just bring a freakin' regular weapon I picked up from somewhere and whack him to death with that (one of the reasons I utterly hate "boss phases" as a mechanic... especially since they tend to limit the amount of damage you can do, or they throw up stupid shields, or whatever the heck).

So, the moral of the story is this:

tl;dr
Level Scaling systems make your games INSANELY EASY. As in... cakewalk easy. They are highly and easily exploitable, and to players like me, who enjoy breaking your game any and every time they can... the only redeeming quality about the system (or even your game).

There's nothing quite so satisfying about having the power of a level 100 overmaxed character... AT LEVEL 1. All because you decided you were too lazy to properly balance your game and went with "quick fix" of "level scaling".
 

ericv00

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Nov 10, 2020
Messages
353
Reaction score
607
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
@Tai_MT

FF8 was mentioned, too. That's a game I broke hilariously by carding every enemy and never actually earning any experience. Stayed low level, keeping enemies at low level. Since stats are linked to magic draws, every boss that had high level magic was a big boost to my dominance over enemies. The Guardian Force system was even more broken, as some of them had abilities that practically made me un-dropable. I think one had a "recover" ability that healed my party heavily every turn. It's hard to drop characters that are almost never off max health.
 

desertbriar

Villager
Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
28
Reaction score
22
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
  • No area map: Please give a map of the dungeon, even if it's crude boxes drawn for rooms and a simple show picture common event from an item. Zelda games had this and it made exploring more fun since you didn't get lost.

    Most newer jrpgs have an area map too. Radiant Historia and Trails of Cold Steel have a nice field map to refer to as you explore.

    Older final fantasies were kinda infuriating to explore without a map to keep your bearings. The tower dungeons in ff4 made me want to tear my hair out.

  • Endurance test dungeons/no convenient ways to restore mp: I disliked how some of the older final fantasies discouraged you from using your cool skills and if you ran out of mp it was near impossible to battle well. Especially the mages/healers.

    Persona 4 and 5 was fine doing this because they at least gave us rare goodies that restored sp to save up to use, and very easy to backtrack to come back to the dungeon later refreshed on sp.

  • ATB battle systems for the sake of it: If you really must, add some skills that allow us to manipulate the turn order/delay enemies' turns/give yourself a haste effect to spice it up in a way that differentiates from classic turn based systems.

    And don't make players wait too long for turns. Watching the turn meter fill up and nothing happening in between is like watching paint dry.

  • Hp sponge bosses: Another jrpg mechanic that was normal for its time back then but dated now. Don't just crank up the stats for bosses, give us some evented ai for frequency of skill uses and the dungeon mechanics/strategies for bosses.

  • Hours of cutscenes/fetch quests/tutorials before you get to the actual gameplay: Persona 4 lmao.

    Also don't dump your entire world's history at the start of the game. Reveal it through smaller bites as you play through the game.

  • Minigames/segments that are a different genre that are forced: They're fine if they're optional. But if I am forced to play a story stealth segment that sends me back to the start if I get caught I will just grumble and sigh. I play jrpgs/action rpgs to run around and kill everything not to hide and sneak slowly to kill the pacing.

    I'll also put quicktime events in this category. They're just annoying and are often put there to make watching a movie feel like a game lol.

  • Perma missable quests/treasure/content if you don't talk to every npc or explore every corner before the story progresses: Just started the Trails games and they are guilty of this. I have a guide open the whole time I am playing Cold steel.

  • Steam achievements that want you to collect every single weapon/equip in the game: I usually don't even bother trying to get these, too much of a hassle. Even filling out a bestiary is more fun.

  • Dialogue boxes/text that take really long to pop up: I will be mashing A the whole time to get to the next box since I read fast. Omori has a few problems with this.

  • Slow walk speed: I very very much dislike the default walking speed of 4 in rpgmaker. Same reason why I always held the run button in older pokemon games. Make the default walking speed 5 and getting around the map is so much better with sprinting as the default walk speed.

  • Random encounters: A dated mechanic that discourages exploration. Whenever I reached dead ends I would dread the backtracking because of the encounters. Also very annoying if you're trying to solve puzzles. *cough Golden sun*

    Even with arrow indicators showing how close you are to entering battle, I would really rather choose when I want to go into combat by approaching or avoiding on map enemies. Also, on map events for enemy encounters gives you good opportunities to add pre-combat eventing that you wouldn't be able to do with random encounters.

  • Bosses that kill you too easily/cheaply and feels like the game cheating you rather than you not getting the strategy and playing well.

  • Limited inventory space.

  • Crafting systems that make you collect 15 sticks to craft a plank which you need 10 of to make a log which you need 5 of to make a wooden dresser. The more tiers the more infuriating. Keep the tiers and amounts required small like 3.

  • Borderline useless debuffs/buffs and status effects.

    If you want a good example of how to make these useful in combat, look to the Persona/SMT games.

  • Enemy level scaling systems: The point of grinding is to get stronger to deal with content easier. The scaling negates that and might just softlock people if your enemies scale too beefy.

  • Enemies that respawn after a few seconds or when you reenter a room: It makes backtracking harder and combat feel kinda pointless. I would rather they respawn when you leave the dungeon entirely and re-enter or heal at a savepoint. Hollow Knight isn't a jrpg but I like how the game let us backtrack easily after clearing rooms of enemies.
 
Last edited:

kirbwarrior

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Nov 13, 2014
Messages
1,077
Reaction score
920
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
N/A
But in hindsight, it does feel a lot like gambling to me
It literally is gambling. And for a long while, got around gambling laws (I think it still does in some countries).
 

123edc

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Nov 17, 2021
Messages
126
Reaction score
98
First Language
german
Primarily Uses
RMMZ
mechanics i hate:
1.1] pay 100$ and skip the level
1.2]pay 200$ and insta kill you're enemy

2.1] dududu *walks through the dungeon, randomly thrown into battle against the epic 1-hit slime every 3 steps ...
2.1] *reaches the end of the dungeon without noticing it* ... *big bad boss appears* ... *insta kill* ... congratulation, you're last 3 hours of playtime successfully wasted

3] walk through dungeon 2, grab me item A ... oh thanks for item A, now go to dungeon 3 and grab me item B ... oh, thanks ... now walk to dungeon 4 and grab me item C ... oh thanks ... so ... why are we even doing this again?

4] "rewards" locked behind a certain playstyle [for example, stuff only available via pvp ... or stuff at the end of you're 50 hour long jorney, you only get, if you picked the exact right choice after you're second step]
 

ericv00

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Nov 10, 2020
Messages
353
Reaction score
607
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
2.1] *reaches the end of the dungeon without noticing it* ... *big bad boss appears* ... *insta kill* ... congratulation, you're last 3 hours of playtime successfully wasted
And that, friends, is one great reason why having specific save points is nice. They are a great indicator of difficulty jumps.
 

Nenen

Unproven Storyteller
Veteran
Joined
Jul 3, 2019
Messages
129
Reaction score
337
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
However I'd argue that it isn't the stealth-style gameplay itself that's the problem drawing you out of what you're used to, but rather the games that do this don't actually program it correctly and thus it's a pain in the butt even if you love stealth gameplay. If your entire game is stealth of course you'll have made enemy detection work properly. But if it's just a small section, chances are you didn't bother to even try.
I'm definitely one of those people who love stealth gameplay, and I very much agree with that statement.

I feel there is no bad mechanics, but poorly implemented ones, any mechanic can shine if done correctly,
And this is practically the solution to the entire thread :kaophew:

It's really all about considering what the feature is meant to do, thinking through the problems it creates and everything that it changes, and not just slapping them on just because reasons.
- Consider how it will actually effect your players. (not just how you want it to work, like Breath of the Wild's durability system not really causing players to change up their weapons)
- Think like an exploiter as well, can the feature be completely broken like @Tai_MT and @ericv00 did to the games they played?
- Does it ultimately accomplish the goal of the game?

Not to sound like I'm an expert or anything, as I'm not, I'm practically just regurgitating something someone said somewhere anyways. :p
 

Latest Threads

Latest Posts

Latest Profile Posts

Watch Studio Blue play Numina by starlit in our latest RPG Maker Games Critique stream starting NOW!

Wish me luck. One of the leading experts on certain false shuffle is going to check if my skill is good enough to be called "not total trash".
Not an RPG Maker Update but I'm happy to say that I finally passed my drivers written test. Which makes me a happy guy.
FWRu-cYXkAAAUbl
Have you ever been in such a luck streak you felt fear something was wrong?
I'm going to be adding in combat animations, revamping the UI and putting in a new cutscene this week, so this is your last chance to play the MC:RIS demo in its original form! Say you were there since the beginning! https://qos.itch.io/infinite-sadness

Forum statistics

Threads
123,121
Messages
1,154,123
Members
161,453
Latest member
arnedidden
Top