RPG Maker MZ, Preview #5: TPBS, A Closer Look

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Dororo

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In fact in this default ATB your'e just waiting 4 seconds before something happen each single round of the entire battle, always 4, no more and no less, it's a good pace.
Without relative values you'll risk that, by bad design, you have monsters continually filling the bar in less than your actual reaction time!
I dunno if there's a resolution stack, but the system look enough primitive to guess there isn't, so by bad design you'll risk to lock out any possible reaction (and figure out kids lamenting their copy is bad...).
 

Anyone

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Most games, ATB was affected by states like "haste" or "slow" or "stop".

But ya, in FF8, the ATB gauge was also affected by the "speed" stat which you could alter in-game provided that you had access to it (which wasn't hard anyways)

View attachment 153926

While it felt great to be able to attack very frequently, it was impractical because it took me 5x as long to respond to it since I'm a slow human. When I put them on berserk state though so they just attack themselves, then it was fun

So if the TPBS's ATB gauge was based on the battler's AGI param, that would be something to think about for balance.
That's true.

The only part that makes me pause about the new ATB system is that there's this minimum time of 4 seconds?
'Cause if that's the minimum pause, and you have a very fast and a very slow character...you'll very rarely be using that slow characters. xD
 

Cyberhawk

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Wait Wouldn't resolution also affect putting an image on the screen? Like if i were to put an image in the center of the screen in MV and then changed the resolution it would no longer be in the center of the screen like i intended it to be. Wouldn't that also affect MZ as anyone can change the resolution.
 

Touchfuzzy

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'Cause if that's the minimum pause, and you have a very fast and a very slow character...you'll very rarely be using that slow characters. xD
You would be using slow characters just as often from a perspective of # of turns as you would be if it was a set amount.

If your fastest character goes every 4 seconds and your slowest character goes every 8 seconds or your fastest goes every 2 seconds and the slowest goes every 4 seconds, makes no difference from a design perspective.

You are still getting 1 action for every 2 actions of the faster character. Making the bars go different speeds doesn't change that (other than the whole delay of having to pick options, which to be honest, I'm not sure "being able to navigate menus super fast" should be the skill for RPGs)

(Also, using square root to determine speed means that to be twice as fast you would need to have 4 times the agility, which having that kind of spread invites problems anyway. This equation is meant to flatten out the difference a little from the highest to slowest speeds so you don't have people moving 2-3x as fast very often.)
 

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Maybe I don't understand what rubberbanding is. I thought it was a feature that ensured similar ATB "bar fill" times regardless of AGI, to help prevent discrepancies like really high AGI or really low AGI.

But my idea is like, let's say early game the bar fills within 5 seconds, but by late game I want it to be 3 seconds. With rubberbanding, it would be forced to 4 seconds throughout the entire game, so what's the point of increasing AGI or having AGI states/buffs like Haste? Particularly, what about when you want characters who have fast filling bars who focus more on utility instead of damage? Wouldn't rubberbanding prevent that kind of play style?
 

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Most games, ATB was affected by states like "haste" or "slow" or "stop".

But ya, in FF8, the ATB gauge was also affected by the "speed" stat which you could alter in-game provided that you had access to it (which wasn't hard anyways)

View attachment 153926

While it felt great to be able to attack very frequently, it was impractical because it took me 5x as long to respond to it since I'm a slow human. When I put them on berserk state though so they just attack themselves, then it was fun

So if the TPBS's ATB gauge was based on the battler's AGI param, that would be something to think about for balance.
FF8 had a very broken system that allowed you to increase stats extreamly easy and rather early in the game if you know how to exploit some abilities early on.

You would be using slow characters just as often from a perspective of # of turns as you would be if it was a set amount.

If your fastest character goes every 4 seconds and your slowest character goes every 8 seconds or your fastest goes every 2 seconds and the slowest goes every 4 seconds, makes no difference from a design perspective.

You are still getting 1 action for every 2 actions of the faster character. Making the bars go different speeds doesn't change that (other than the whole delay of having to pick options, which to be honest, I'm not sure "being able to navigate menus super fast" should be the skill for RPGs)

(Also, using square root to determine speed means that to be twice as fast you would need to have 4 times the agility, which having that kind of spread invites problems anyway. This equation is meant to flatten out the difference a little from the highest to slowest speeds so you don't have people moving 2-3x as fast very often.)
So, if I understand correctly, no matter what, the fastest a character will fill it's own tpb metter will be 4 seconds? Is there a way to make that each character will have different times and none will be 4 seconds?
For example, I have a hero party of 3 characters with varying AGI stats, and an enemy party of 3 all with the same AGI stat, but that stat is lower than the hero party average AGI stat. For the sake of the example, enemy party has an AGI of 9 each and hero party has AGI of 10, 12 and 14 respectively. Does that mean that the enemies will have a wait time of 4 seconds, but the hero characters will have an average of 3 seconds but, because of the "rubberbanding" will be 4 seconds?

What I would expect is that hero characters will fill faster their wait metter than the enemies, and will not necesarilly be locked to a minimum average time set by the engine. I would guess I could remove such a thing with a plugin though.
 

Touchfuzzy

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... I think you are all fundamentally misunderstanding what the system does.

Fastest actor or enemy is given a bar fill time of 4 seconds.

Then everyone else's bar fill time is set proportional to that bar fill time based on their speed (determined based on the square root of their AGI)

That is it. Faster characters always act faster than slower characters. Slower characters always act slower than faster characters.

It doesn't rubberband anything. Which is why I was confused by people using that term to describe it.

All it does is set the pace at the beginning of combat.
 

Dororo

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For example, I have a hero party of 3 characters with varying AGI stats, and an enemy party of 3 all with the same AGI stat, but that stat is lower than the hero party average AGI stat. For the sake of the example, enemy party has an AGI of 9 each and hero party has AGI of 10, 12 and 14 respectively. Does that mean that the enemies will have a wait time of 4 seconds, but the hero characters will have an average of 3 seconds but, because of the "rubberbanding" will be 4 seconds?
The faster hero (AGI 14) will spend 4 seconds to fill his bar (the faster == 4 seconds). ALL OTHERS a little bit more time depending on their AGI.

Practically speaking, you come with a multipler by dividing the faster AGI sqr and multiply by the allowed time of 4 seconds (that's how it does sound to me).
AGI 25 vs AGI 9 vs AGI 4:
AGI 25 > sqr 5 > 5/5 = 1 > 4*1 = 4 seconds.
AGI 9 > sqr 3 > 5/3 = 1.6 > 4*1.6 = 6.4 seconds.
AGI 4 > sqr 2 > 5/2 = 2.5 > 4*2.5 = 10 seconds.

As a consequence, the actor with AGI 25 will act 2 times before the actor with AGI 4 can perform any (on the long run, the first actor can perform 10 actions in the time the slow one can perform just 4 of them).
As you can see what's count is not the sheer AGI score, but the difference between the square roots, that determine how slow move the slowest ones.
 
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Winshifter

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... I think you are all fundamentally misunderstanding what the system does.

Fastest actor or enemy is given a bar fill time of 4 seconds.

Then everyone else's bar fill time is set proportional to that bar fill time based on their speed (determined based on the square root of their AGI)

That is it. Faster characters always act faster than slower characters. Slower characters always act slower than faster characters.

It doesn't rubberband anything. Which is why I was confused by people using that term to describe it.

All it does is set the pace at the beginning of combat.
I kind of understood that, that the fastest character will have a wait time of 4 seconds and the rest will be calculated based on that and their respective AGI stat. So my next question will be....Can I change that time to be more freely calculated? Lets say that I want to change those 4 seconds to 6 seconds for example, and gradually make it so that it goes down to 3 seconds. The rest will be calculated basically the same. Getting a little bit ahead, I guess my idea would require a plugin, but probably one not so complicated.
 

Touchfuzzy

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Would need a plugin for that.
 

KakonComp

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I do have a question @Touchfuzzy, and I apologize if it's already been answered.

With the new TPBS system, if someone is inflicted with slow for just one turn, does it end when their turn starts, only being slowed from being infected until their time to act, or does it end on the following turn, causing one full gauge fill-up + the above in order for the slow effect to disappear?
 

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Wait Wouldn't resolution also affect putting an image on the screen? Like if i were to put an image in the center of the screen in MV and then changed the resolution it would no longer be in the center of the screen like i intended it to be. Wouldn't that also affect MZ as anyone can change the resolution.
Only you as the dev can change the resolution.
 

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@Touchfuzzy I see that the gauge continues to fill up while the player is making their decision, which allows enemies to perform actions while you're thinking. And also allows multiple characters to be "ready for input" and switch between them with the cancel button.

What about when an actor or enemy is performing an action?
Does the gauge stop filling or does it continue to fill?
 

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What about when an actor or enemy is performing an action?
Does the gauge stop filling or does it continue to fill?
This is important to know, because it can wreck game balance.

In FF7 and FF8, time stops during actions. While in FF9, it doesn't UNLESS you're using Wait Mode and selecting commands from a submenu. This means that in games like FF9, during long animations, some passive effects like auto-regen are completely broken because they will fully heal your characters before the animation ends and damage is dealt to them. Likewise, timed effects like haste, slow or protect would end during those long animations, making them nearly useless as well.
 

MysteryMan23

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My question is, is the "fastest value" variable updated as battlers' AGI changes, or is it fixed at the start of battle?

I ask because in the latter case, either characters with boosted AGI will be able to fill their meters in less than four seconds if their AGI gets high enough, or changing AGI won't affect how fast the meters fill at all. At least, that's my assumption.
 

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I would honestly suggest against it from a design perspective. It means either the battles will act really slow at the beginning, or they will be so fast at the end that it will be hard to input commands in fast enough.
Any "realtime" RPG would have this "problem" and like all things everyone has a different preference, for me that's not a "problem" at all, that's exactly what I want. I want the game to "feel" faster later in the game (with better stats, gear, buff etc). I have played some RPG games where a buffed late game character basically attacked non stop because their attack speed was so high (the only delay was the animation) but that's fun. I like fast combat, I played the whole FF12 remake with the max speed modifier during battles.

But to be honest I only played turn based or "true" realtime games, so I have never seen such a implementation before, for some reason I thought ATB means everything is based on realtime and not "fake turns", for example status effects tick after X seconds no matter if the character did an action or not.

That's one of the main reasons why I refunded my preorder, I will check out the trial version before I spend money, maybe it feels better than it sounds.
 

TheoAllen

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like all things everyone has a different preference
Plugins exist to satisfy everyone's preference. The base engine means to provide a single design philosophy and should be easy to alter by plugins. And that doesn't mean the base engine should satisfy everyone's preference and design philosophy.

But to be honest I only played turn based or "true" realtime games, so I have never seen such a implementation before, for some reason I thought ATB means everything is based on realtime and not "fake turns", for example status effects tick after X seconds no matter if the character did an action or not.
When you're designing a game engine and you provide both turn-based and "real-time" and also you have a state tab database that has "this state expires in 3 turns", so you gotta account what does turn mean in your "realtime" option.
 

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Plugins exist to satisfy everyone's preference. The base engine means to provide a single design philosophy and should be easy to alter by plugins. And that doesn't mean the base engine should satisfy everyone's preference and design philosophy.


When you're designing a game engine and you provide both turn-based and "real-time" and also you have a state tab database that has "this state expires in 3 turns", so you gotta account what does turn mean in your "realtime" option.
Yes that's kinda obvious and I never said anything against that. I only said there are other valid solutions in other games. Plugins can change everything but at one point you have to ask yourself it it is worth to change all these things with plugins or if it would be better to change to a different engine, that's why im here to learn more about the new combat system.


About the turns, I have seen other solutions where they renamed the word turn to "tick" and every status effect would "tick" in the turn based combat it would tick once per turn and in the real time combat you could set a tick time to a specific time, for example 3 seconds then the status effect would "tick" every 3 seconds and expire after X "ticks". So again, im not saying that their solution is bad, im just saying that there are other valid solutions for the same "problem" and I kinda like the other solutions better.
 

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My question is, is the "fastest value" variable updated as battlers' AGI changes, or is it fixed at the start of battle?

I ask because in the latter case, either characters with boosted AGI will be able to fill their meters in less than four seconds if their AGI gets high enough, or changing AGI won't affect how fast the meters fill at all. At least, that's my assumption.
This would be interesting, given that status effects are also tied to turn count, which is tied to fastest AGI.
This would mean changing AGI can also lead to changes in when things like poison damage occurs?
 

SOC

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This would be interesting, given that status effects are also tied to turn count, which is tied to fastest AGI.
This would mean changing AGI can also lead to changes in when things like poison damage occurs?
Exactly, this is the biggest flaw with it being based on turn count instead of tick based. It causes massive discrepancies depending on the speed of the character. Things like poison, regen, and even other states that wear off after awhile like protect or haste will all impact higher AGI characters differently than lower ones. If I remember correctly, Yanfly even mentioned this is why they stopped supporting ATB plugin for MV, so I really hope we can get a tick based system for MZ.
 
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