- Oct 13, 2012
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(yep, now that I'm posting it I see that the Chimera should say five times instead of four)
Have you ever thought of implementing a druid like mechanic to your game that allows your heroes to summon monsters or spirits to fight alongside them in battle?
There are some things that we need to take into account when setting something like this up with the most important being:
We need to have a free slot in our party to add a temporary member.
The test party for this project will consist of Reid, Kasey and Gale, with Kasey being the one with the “druidic spells”.
Setting up such a spell consists of several parts (you don’t have to create them in that order):
Step 1: Making an actor database entry for the pet
This is pretty straightforward. You will need the graphics for such a pet (in this case, I used a recolor of hiddenone’s MV wolf and my own wolf face and sprite)
Here is also a point to decide how you want your pet mechanic to work. There are many possibilities that might affect your balancing:
- Your pets just can’t level up. That is what I chose for this tutorial, since I felt like it would be best fitting for out of the world spirits. This would also enable me to equip Kasey with mightier summons later, having the higher levels of summoned pets matching the mightier skills the characters learn.
- You could also consider a mechanic where they level up, maybe even with multiple possibilities, so the player has to choose which pet to invest the XP in. Depending on the costs of them being summoned, they might level up faster than the actors.
Step 2: How to summon the pet?
This is a two part operation, first we have the way the party can access said pet:
If we choose a skill for summoning, we need one that targets noone and has only an effect in battle as those spirits are just battle buddies and go back to the spirit realm afterwards.
The only thing it really does is having the effect of a common event:
To get the pet event working as we want, we can use a variable and a switch.
The variable saves which pet is summoned at the time, 1 being the wolf, 2 would be the cat and 3 the chicken. This helps us to detect “double summoning”, aka summoning a pet that is already on the map.
In this example case, nothing but a little complaint from the wolf happens if that is done, but you could think about alternate effects, such as healing the spirit fully or giving it a blessing…
And if the wolf is not already summoned (aka the variable is not 1), any other possible spirit gets kicked out of the party to make room for the one that is called. Here again you can choose other things to happen that work best for you!
There is also a switch activated that we will need after the battle.
Besides that, the wolf enters the game!
Step 3: After the battle
Now that one switch comes into account, as we need a second common event:
After the battle we need to ensure that the variable and switch are reset and that all the spirits return to their realm.
In battle, the wolf or the other spirits will join you as if they were a regular party member…
…but after battle, they will be gone:
Those are the basics, and you can tinker with them as you wish. A good alternate way to summoning via a skill is using a designated item - this also allows you to limit the number of times an especially powerful spirit is used in battle.
(Sprite by me, face slightly edited default MV battler)
When adding said Chimera Stone, we also set a designated Variable (in this case the one with the ID 6) to the amount of uses we grant the player.
Of course as always with such things we need to ensure that the player cannot reset the variable (unless this is part of the mechanic), here for example with a self switch that unlocks the next page of the event.
The item itself is very similar to the skill we made above, as a little bonus we can use the variable to remind the player of how many uses they have left:
As in message windows, the \V[ID_of_the_varaible] will show the value of the ID you add in the brackets:
The action around the chimera is pretty similar to the one for the wolf - remember to add it to the remove after battle event and to the summoning events of the other spirits as well!
The difference is our variable, which will decrease with each call. Once the calls are used up, the chimera stone disappears. Here you have many additional options:
- You could add a “breaking message” to give the player a heads up that the stone is now gone.
- You could add a “Broken Chimera Stone” after removing the functioning one. This could lead to a restoration quest, maybe even by a crafting system that allows you to recharge broken stones once you gathered the right materials for it.
This counting mechanic could also work for skills, so you could even grant and then remove a skill that can only be used so many times.
(Battler by hiddeone)
This system lets you add a lot to your battles, allowing you to be flexible with your character line up to wisely choose the right beast to counter the enemy you are facing.
Just be careful, since those additional creatures can make your balancing a lot more complex!
You could also consider the spell to have an out of battle effect as well - maybe to aid the players with certain tasks, if you want to implement something like that, I highly recommend hiddeone’s tutorial on that topic.