So many "just another RPG Maker" games out there... Something should be done!

Leon Kennedy

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@Leon Kennedy : We've tried. Not much luck so far. Those who want to churn out trash games on steam are going to churn them out and use them to farm trading cards or achievements, and there is nothing we can do about it. That's why I said at the very beginning that unless Steam changes how they do things, like either raise the cost to post the game on there enough to deter such actions, or actually play every game then decide whether to allow it, there is little we can do realistically.
Yes it is really up to steam. I suppose maybe on the next version of MV they could add a link to forums. But as you said people will just throw terrible games on there for a few extra bucks and steam allows it because well that's what they are all about is being a platform for gaming no matter how terrible of a game they are. I suppose the terrible games aren't as bad as the early access games that never get finished because people can post a great concept game with just 10 minutes of gameplay and as long as it looks good charge 10 bucks a pop on it.
 

BigEd781

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You're never going to solve that problem. Anything with a low barrier to entry is going to lure in all sorts of people who just can't cut it. Look at programming, I see this all of the time. Hell, I see it in a _professional_ setting. I get resumes from people who literally do not know the basics, yet they think they're cut out to be engineers on a complex medical device.

Dunning Kruger, ignorance, whatever the reason, anything with a low barrier to entry is going to invite in incompetent individuals. Conversely, if the barrier to entry were high, we may miss out on contributions by people who wouldn't have otherwise had access. Double edged sword. RPG Maker has it's place, and though some will make great games which are commercially successful (relatively), it's not going to be the norm. Never will be, and that's ok.
 

Touchfuzzy

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Aha, I've always said my programming skill was "I know enough to be dangerous, but not enough to be useful". (To be honest, the level of skill I have is good enough to usually read through OTHER people's code to figure out what is doing what. Which is useful in a broad way that if it is a small edit, I can probably manage myself, but even in that case I still blow stuff up occasionally. On the other hand, having a basic understanding of good coding practices/structure makes anyone better at eventing in RM, so that is useful).
 

metronome

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Or maybe raise the Steam direct fee to a high enough value that people would not want to just post another clone for $1 anymore. But either way, it's nothing we can control.
I think they would have to raise the fee to a minimum of 1000 USD in order to purge all of those 1$ish clones, but then, I don't think steam has the balls to do that (now).

Remember that time when steam announced they will only charge 100 USD for steam direct fee? Most devs cheered on this decision and the ones who end up complaining about their games low discoverability issues are coming from these same group. Irony.
 

SpunkyWunky

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I think the most foolproof way of fixing the problem is to try and make your game not look like it came from RPG Maker? Yeah RPG maker has a certain stigma, but there are still wildly popular rpg maker games and it's generally the ones that have completely scrapped every piece of default asset. This I feel is because there are many default asset games out there that are terrible- so when people see another game that uses all the same default assets, they associate it with the terrible stuff out there... whether or not it's really that bad.
Perhaps making the default assets not royalty-free would help? That way, everyone who wants to create a passion project for a hobby or expression can make something using just default assets; but people who want to sell commercially have to create their own assets.
Creating assets is time consuming, can be costly if you need to hire someone... might be a good way to find the people willing to put in the effort needed to make their game a success?
 

Nightblade50

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I think the most foolproof way of fixing the problem is to try and make your game not look like it came from RPG Maker? Yeah RPG maker has a certain stigma, but there are still wildly popular rpg maker games and it's generally the ones that have completely scrapped every piece of default asset. This I feel is because there are many default asset games out there that are terrible- so when people see another game that uses all the same default assets, they associate it with the terrible stuff out there... whether or not it's really that bad.
Perhaps making the default assets not royalty-free would help? That way, everyone who wants to create a passion project for a hobby or expression can make something using just default assets; but people who want to sell commercially have to create their own assets.
Creating assets is time consuming, can be costly if you need to hire someone... might be a good way to find the people willing to put in the effort needed to make their game a success?
Correct. Absolutely. Any game made with a lot of RTP (especially characters and tilesets) doesn't look so appealing to me.
 

bgillisp

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Actually, the most popular RPGMaker games I've seen (in terms of sales) are RTP heavy, and some of the worst sellers ditched the RTP completely. So it is not just RTP that decides it.
 

Benny Jackdaw

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Making an RPG is easy, but making a GOOD one takes some okie-dokes. Still working on my
fatfur
RGP, and I have been trying to add my own twists and gimmicks. ...But the hard part is ballancing. You can put all the gimmicks you want into a game, but without strategic gameplay and good ballancing, it's all for nothing. ...And that's the part I'm struggling with. The battles are feeling a bit mindless, and I've been moving moves around to make them more strategic, but it aint easy.

My game uses RTP music, sounds and effects, though most of the graphics are hand made. ...Amateurish, but hand made.
 

MrZalgo

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Any engine that can be used for free and allows you to buy assets is almost guaranteed to have a community with that mindset. It's just how it is.
 

AdamSakuru

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I mean, it's not that hard to don't "make just another RPG Maker Game"
I completely disagree with this. Steam says I've logged 1217 hours into RPG Maker MV. And I'm only about 10-15% of the way through my project. It's anything but easy to make an RPG Maker project that stands out and it will always be time consuming to do so. While not RPG Maker, just look at a game like Undertale. It started out as a game meant to be 2 hours long and then it turned into a 3 year development cycle. Undertale even had design decisions like simplistic graphics as a way to churn out assets quickly.

I'll admit that I'm a bit of a slow worker, I deal with depression, etc. I don't code, I do have a learning disorder and I'm spearheading the majority of the development of my game (save for the soundtrack, which I'm commissioning by a very talented man) but making something of substance is time consuming in any case. The very rough demo to my game has been pretty well received though, so the work you put in will definitely pay off as long as you don't half ass it. If you have a job, be thorough about it. The Philosophy to my game project is "I want to make a game that's an example of RPG Maker done right."

A quote I really like from an artist: "If you don't like working nights, stick to your day job."
Game development can be very grueling. I have super frustrating days with my project. You gotta keep getting back on that horse!
 
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Benny Jackdaw

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Another problem I run into is bug testing and release happiness. Often times I would get so excited to release a project I'd forget to bug test it and I'd release it with a lot of bugs. Even when I DO go through bug-testing, I still miss several bugs.
 

Zemtax

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I'm pretty sure Unreal Engine will run into the same issue as Unity and RM games.
As things get more and more available, communities will form and grow, more tutorials and guides pop into existance, more assets will be created, more people will use it, and more shovelware will be thrown out into the world. I don't think it's a problem, it's just how things go.

People who like RTP in games will still play those games, people who don't won't. For me, the only sad aspect here is that the RTP assets lose perceived value as more and more shovelware gets produced, as it's already the case on steam, and RTP is by no means bad, it just loses uniqueness.

Though, I think with enough editing, you could still make a unique feeling RTP game, it's just more effort, imo.
 

ChampX

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Actually, the most popular RPGMaker games I've seen (in terms of sales) are RTP heavy, and some of the worst sellers ditched the RTP completely. So it is not just RTP that decides it.
I just played To The Moon recently and while that game does use the RTP, I noticed that TTM manages to blend RTP with custom assets perfectly as well as using assets appropriately to convey the context and emotion. Other RTP games don't really manage to strike this balance well and instead are mostly just using RTP just because that's what they have to work with and try to make some assets work in a context that isn't suitable. The same can also be true for non-RTP as well as you still have to appropriately convey context and have all assets blend with one another to. This comes more from a design standpoint than art.

That would be my theory at least on why some of the best sellers have RTP and some bad ones have none.
 

bgillisp

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@ChampX : Probably that is some of it, as if you use the RTP well it can look great. The other part of it I've noticed though is time...how long has it been since the game was released? Most of the big name RPGMaker sellers have been out since 2014.

I myself think it is because the market is so glutted nowadays that you will need a few games out there to get an audience. Each game you release you get more players, and if they like what they buy then, they are more likely to go back and buy the older games of yours. Over time, this adds up. But, those that didn't sell well, from what I can see they just quit after one game and never tried to build up that audience. At least that is my theory.
 

ChampX

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@bgillisp I'm sure word of mouth plays another role on top of that, which is something that builds as time goes on. I only looked at To The Moon because I kept reading it as being a highly regarded RM game. Really it's probably best to say that its a combination of all the above and multiple factors take place if a game is going to be a hit or not. Even if RTP is used, you also still need to have an identity where someone can look at your game and immediately recognize it as yours instead of someone elses, which is harder to do with RTP of course, and this also helps build your audience as well.
 

CottonCandy

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For me the problem of low quality games comes from treating the game engine as... the game engine instead of seeing it as a medium for telling a story. Of course game components are important because well, we are making a game afterall. It's just sometimes I feel like a lot of times people are so captivated by gaming and visual part that they want to get on with it ASAP instead of carefully planing the whole game beforehand. I think there should be hours and hours spent not only in the game engine but before that there should be also hours spent at the desk with computer turned off, calmy planning it all out with a pen and a piece of paper.
 

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