The Joy of Quest

Discussion in 'Completed Games' started by OldIrishMN, Jan 26, 2015.

  1. OldIrishMN

    OldIrishMN Villager Member

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    Midwestern USA
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    Uncounted miles and unknown years stretched behind the wanderer on the day they came to Seaside Town.

    The journey had been quiet, the roads safe. The wanderer's skills with blade and spell had slipped into welcome disuse.

    The sleepy coastal community promised more peace and quiet, but strange forces stirred in the shadows, and they had other plans...

    "The Joy of Quest" is a short, sweet, frequently comedic homage to the games I grew up loving on the SNES. In it you play "the wanderer," a mysterious adventurer with a penchant for solving other peoples' problems and fighting their battles. The wanderer is a veteran of this risky lifestyle, and usually manages to stay cheerful and debonair no matter how often they get boiled, stabbed, shot, poisoned, teleported, misled, or dragooned into taking care of someone else's chores. Like any good RPG village, Seaside Town would be completely helpless without a hero like the wanderer to sort out its troubles.  


    I've owned a copy of RPG Maker VX Ace for several weeks now, and "The Joy of Quest" is my first learning project. The goal I set myself was to create a complete RPG using the default visual elements of the VX ACE RTP... it had to have an intro event, a variety of quests, a reasonably developed combat system, a fairly open (if tiny) world, a vehicle, and a complete set of credits screens that changes based on player achievements and decisions. It also had to run smoothly, after relatively extensive proofreading and debugging.

    "The Joy of Quest" should provide anywhere from 3-7 hours of gameplay, depending on how long you dawdle and how much of a taste you have for XP grinding (which will provide advantages, but is not at all necessary).


    - The main character ("the wanderer") has the ability to reach a maximum level of 20 on a fairly gentle XP curve.

    - The wanderer will learn up to 24 intrinsic skills from leveling and can learn 6 more from quests, books, or trainers.

    - 30 original weapons and 43 original pieces of armor, as well as many familiar favorites from the VX Ace database.

    - A variety of original items, including several grenades and a series of weapon upgrade kits.

    - 63 distinct quests, ranging from simple fetch-and-return errands to burglaries, investigations, and even time travel.

    - A rudimentary quest tracking system.

    - Reasonably elaborate dialogue and quest chains involving more than 25 major NPCs

    - Two different fates for the wanderer, and four unique endgame events that only appear if certain quest chains are complete.


    "The Joy of Quest 1.1" complete game without RTP (requires RPG Maker VX Ace to play); 81 MB

    "The Joy of Quest" Design Notes and Gameplay Hints (Text File, 12 KB)


    joq1.jpg joq3.jpg joq2.jpg joq4.jpg joq5.jpg

    When I began "The Joy of Quest," I barely knew how to build a loot crate or a working room. By the time it was finished, I was trying to juggle multiple characters time-traveling in different states of quest completion, including some that shapeshift along the way. I hope this sweet and silly little game will give you a few hours of pleasure and diversion. I am eager to hear what anyone wants to offer by way of notes and criticism!

    OKAY, SO THOSE WEREN'T FINAL THOUGHTS (Updated February 1st)

    Thanks to feedback from reviewers on this forum, I have been able to identify and correct a few problems. The updated version of the game is grandiosely christened "version 1.1" and all download links in this forum and my signature have been adjusted to make it available.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 2, 2015
  2. starcrescendo

    starcrescendo Stargazer Veteran

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    Buffalo, NY
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    I don't know how this game didn't get any feedback yet, so let's change that!

    I did a video review/Let's Play of your game. I really enjoyed it, but lost interest a bit after a couple hours when it started to get tedious. You're an excellent writer, I had to pause the video a few times because of gross spitting at my computer screen at some of the jokes in the game. Overall very well done.

    Here is the link to the video:

    If you just want the feedback portion, skip to about 01:03:49 in the video above. (Note: I literally just uploaded it so it may take a few minutes to appear!)

    Congratulations on finishing your game, I hope more people try it out!
  3. Chester

    Chester Meow Kitten Veteran

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    Dear Kitten
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    Cat Tongue
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    Hello OldIrishMN I made a review for your game meow :3

    First of all, Good Job on the title screen because the music sure fit the title image in my opinion. The opening was good. I like the style of writing.

    I start off in Seaside Town. This town was mapped nicely, well done. I have no clue where to go and so I decided to talk with all of the NPCs and it’s all just constant reading with no face images, just letters which is fine I guess but I do suggest you add faces to your dialog to tell each character apart because it can get confusing at times. It turns out that most of them give me a quest which is good if I knew what I was really supposed to be doing. Then there’s this dog and Oh Kitten it disappeared which was random so ok…It seems the main character is a thief because I seem to be able to loot almost everything from all the houses and so by now I am about 13 minutes into the game and then OH MY KITTY GOD.

    There is a kid who gives out a quest about cupcakes and whenever the player accepts his quest he stays still blocking whoever’s in his way…Yes he blocked me and I had NO WAY to free myself. Sadly I had to start New Game all over again. So after I went back to loot all the houses and talked to all the NPCs all over again, it turns out that the Quests give you almost NOTHING! I began to question what I had been doing for the last 15 minutes of running around fetching stuff.

    The Combat System here is the Standard RPG Maker Combat System. For the combat gameplay I would say you need to work on it because it IS quite difficult without engaging in a grind fest. The Hornet Quest is hard if you do not use Strong Attack and even if you did, the hornets get to go first and so pretty much they already hit you for tons of damage before you hit them with tons of damage. The abandoned lab monsters are even harder! The Cave monsters are GODS compared to me and I don’t even know if I were even supposed to be able to gain entrance to that place in the first place because you can sneak inside the cave by entering from the right. Most players do not enjoy grind fests especially when the monsters are quite difficult.

    The Story is quite strange here. First of all, I get this awesome introduction then I just happen to arrive in a town without any knowledge of who I am, what my goal is, or even my real name. The NPCs don’t really help much except that the narrator does a good deal of explaining abilities I wish I could use in battle. One of the most stressful things in any Video Game is when the player loses the sense of direction.

    The Music here is very good I enjoyed it.

    I did enjoy the narrator talking because it did amuse me. Your writing style is very good and I liked your references to other things like Harry Potter and the Shades of Gray book. Az’Kor the cat is AWESOME! The lab Jellyfish was over powered killing me in 1 hit and the Slimes in the drain was quite random which is good. Lastly, I am quite baffled at all the vegetables and random loot in have in inventory.

    Overall, I give this game a verdict of 3/5

    PS Do not be discouraged because of this verdict; I believe you will be an Awesome game maker with more experience since your style of writing is superior than most I've seen.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 2, 2015
  4. OldIrishMN

    OldIrishMN Villager Member

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    Midwestern USA
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    Wow! Thank you, Chester and Starcrescendo. This is SO useful.

    Starcrescendo: I'm extremely chuffed to see a LP video for my game; thank you so much for your time and trouble! I was almost biting my nails, watching you come close to discovering this or that secret, or solving this or that problem you were describing as you played.

    - The bug in Remy's basement is due to the fact that at first I used floor crack tiles to decorate certain vertical walls, not realizing this would make them passable for the player and let the player wander around inside walls. I thought I'd caught and removed all of these. Sorry about that! It's fixed now. 

    - It was indeed kind of shortsighted of me to break with the RPG tradition that beds and inns represent sources of recovery. I have given Delmar (the publican) a bit of dialogue pointing the player to the well. I have also added functionality to some of the beds in town allowing them to be used for rest. 

    - You're right that there is an unfortunate aimlessness at the start of the game. It is indeed a very miniaturized open-world game with a "main plot" that picks up after a while (you were climbing its ladder when you took on Atticus and Morella's quests), but it wasn't until late in the game building process that I began to properly study game narrative and player guidance. Even huge sandboxes like SKYRIM or OBLIVION dump players into the world with clear indicators to pursue the main quest; they're free to do other things for hours or even days, but at least they know that the main quest is out there and waiting.

    I added one slight touch to the intro scroll at the very beginning of the game: "The wanderer belonged to an order of knights without banners, roaming the land anonymously, sworn to help those in need." It's not high art, but at least it provides just a bit more of a hint than "Welcome to the world, here are no directions!"

    - Thank you, also, for pointing out that having all the NPCs in Seaside Town moving at the same rate of change/speed makes them look goofy. I have adjusted several of them to vary their movement rates.

    Chester: Thank you as well for several excellent points.

    - I didn't use face graphics at first because I was too inexperienced, both to really integrate them properly and to realize how much they helped. I began using them toward the climax of the game, when three other party members join the wanderer and it became necessary to identify who was saying what. If I were building this game from scratch I'd use face graphics from the very beginning. 

    - About the fact that Spanky locked up and froze you in place... sorry! I peeked at his event pages and quickly realized exactly what had happened. One page was accidentally set to "fixed" rather than "random" movement, so when you accepted his quest, and happened to be standing between obstacles... you got stuck forever. Crap design on my part. I have fixed this.

    - The early quests actually do give you things (XP, gold, and occasional stat bonuses) but any confusion is only my fault, because some quests tell you this and others do not. I wonder if there's a script out there that might make a little "+{x} XP" float up from the actor graphic, since I think flatly stating "You get {x} XP" in a text window is highly inelegant. Something for me to work on in the future...

    - About the fact that you could enter the sealed cave from the right... WOW. Sheer blindness on my part. Really inexcusable. I have fixed this (by making a passable hill tile into an impassable mountain tile as it should have been).

    Thank you again, both of you. I have taken this feedback and made some simple changes to the game, which I have now uploaded as version 1.1.


    starcrescendo and Chester like this.
  5. watermark

    watermark Veteran Veteran

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    Hi. Thanks for making such a fun game. Here's my review of your game for the "Let's Review Games!" community event. Hmm.. why doesn't the forums allow direct links to Facebook pictures? Well, anyway, here's the

    Review Link

    Just my opinions, don't take it too seriously. I played the original release and I was done reviewing the game before I found out you released a 1.1 ver. It appears to be just bug fixes so I think my review should still be relevant. Hope you find it useful.

    Also, I am of a differing opinion regarding the "aimlessness" of your beginning. Personally, I liked not knowing who the hell I was and what the hell I was doing and doing random weird things with no clear directions. And then WHOA! The story jumped me. I liked that. So that worked for me.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2015

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