Lunawolfcomics

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Hey guys I wanted some feedback from you all. When it comes to tutorials in games I like the option of either skipping it or viewing it; (skipping it for those who may be familiar with the game or viewing it for new players). But my main question is would you rather have a written tutorial where one character might tell you the game controls or tell you how to battle. Or some sort of scene or easy battle where everything is kind layed out for you, for ex: in Pokémon where someone shows you how to battle, use items and throw a pokeball. Thanks guys, looking forward to your feedback.

-JAD
 

Milennin

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I like it when I can play through a tutorial, rather than just reading text or watching a cutscene.
 

Warpmind

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Personally, I favor a show-and-tell variant. Pointing out which parts of the scenery are liable to hold nifty stuff (beside chests), basic combat system, any other interesting implemented mechanics - especially if there's been some heavy modification from the defaults.
 

DarthVollis

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I agree. Playing through a tutorial is much better. If you can make it where the player does not realize it is a tutorial that is even better.
 

Lunawolfcomics

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Ok well since everyone had the same answer I think it's safe to say that playing through a tutorial is better lol. Thanks for the feedback! :)
 

AceOfAces_Mod

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I agree. Playing through a tutorial is much better. If you can make it where the player does not realize it is a tutorial that is even better.
I guess that the "learn through playing" mentality works a lot better.

I have an idea taken from a few games: Tell the player what to do and execute. (You get what I'm trying to say, no?) I'm having some trouble with that, but it's workable (at least on paper).

I guess if your game is an arcade a cutscene is ok (most of the NEOGEO arcade games do this), but on a game like, say Rouge Galaxy, it does not.
 
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Deathspecter

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I have an idea taken from a few games: Tell the player what to do and execute. 
I agree totally with this. For me it's more effective not just show how it is but let the player do it by himself, with visual orientation. This is the method I use in my game  :)
 

Makio-Kuta

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I honestly don't care how a game tells me how to play, so long as it doesn't take FOREVER.

I don't mind a small screen that pops up and says (X does this, SPACE does that, Q does this other thing) or (this is how a system works). I do mind being expected to read a five paragraph essay on how a system works.

No matter WHAT style tutorial a game decides to go with; I don't want to be stuck in the tutorial for 2 hours before I can actually play the game. :/

Hands on approaches usually stick better in someone's mind though, and it's pretty important for the player to remember what they learn in the tutorial.

I think how memorable your tutorials are should be the most important thing to think about; rather than immersion breaking, intuitive, creative, etc, etc, etc they are.
 

Warpmind

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Being in the tutorial part of the game for two hours might not be a negative experience... depending on the skill with which the tutorial is delivered. If the tutorial part is in the form of a series of guided events with a bit of free exploration and narrative in between, it can work quite well; if the player is left with the sensation that "They stuck the whole damn tutorial in an indigestible lump here!", it's a poor execution, while if the player is trotting along at their own pace and the "guide" pops up with something along the lines of "Hey, I've got a new trick to teach you!", followed by an opportunity to play around with the newest mechanic for a little bit, it can be magnificent.

It's really all about the pacing.
 

Makio-Kuta

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I knew I should have used a bigger exaggeration number than 2 hours; I originally typed 7 hours lol

I don't literally mean that specific amount of time. I mean something that you can obviously tell is dragging on and getting on your nerves and making you shout "just let me play the GAME" at your screen.

Your example that puts actual narrative, exploration, and other parts of the game between tutorial segments I wouldn't really classify the whole thing as the tutorial. Just the bits where the game is actually telling you how to play. So even then, it's not really like being in an extended tutorial. It's playing the game, with a few minutes of tutorial popping up as you go.

Which I agree, are usually signs of a good tutorial. (because they aren't info dumps all at once where you're only going to walk away with 25% of what you learned and give you time to learn)

But even that can get tiresome:

Something that annoys me: "Use directional keys to walk! Practice walking around." - game forces you to move around until it is satisfied- Is something like that really necessary in a game where there are no gimmicks to walking around?

Maybe that's just me, but that drives me insane :E
 

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One of the best tutorials was on Jak 3 (on PS2). From basic platforming to driving a car, it was well paced while teaching you the controls.
 

Celianna

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I prefer to be able to skip tutorials as well (for a second playthrough), and have the tutorials be like cutscenes that show me examples.


I don't need a tutorial for how to walk around though ... those days are long gone when people needed to be taught how to walk, nowadays everyone knows the basics to videogames, especially in a niche like RPG Maker.
 

Lunawolfcomics

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I absolutely love the Jak and Daxter series! The third one was by far my favorite.
 

EternalShadow

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Playing old games actually shows us something: we don't NEED the tutorials for most games. The problem is that a lot of us are really impatient and don't wish to experiment with anything anymore. Case in point: Wizardry 8. The only guides I can find on the game are all about levelling up, optimum gameplay, that sort of thing. However, the gameplay itself is actually INTUITIVE. It is obvious what you're meant to be doing. Even if you get into a fight in the first minute and muck up, there's practically no consequence for failure at that point unless you're on the hardest difficulty on iron man mode (permadeath) or something.

So unless your game has some complex systems, it doesn't really need a tutorial. I don't think the default RM battle system really needs a tutorial, especially if you allow the player a couple of battles to get used to it, and maybe tell them a couple of controls (enter, esc)!
 

Makio-Kuta

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I 100% agree with that. A lot of cases, tutorials are really unnecessary. Been played Might and Magic 6 lately, and there wasn't any tutorial at the start of that game. Just BAM here we go. You had to figure out a lot of stuff along the way. Maybe you were expected to read the manual, but I sure never have, and personally that makes the game a whole different level of fun!

That being said, I've also been playing Dangan Ronpa recently, and although that game's tutorials are pretty horribly written and don't make a lot of sense in a lot of cases, I think the gameplay in the trial portions of the game is a good example of something that should have a tutorial. The alchemy systems in most Atelier games come to mind as well.

I guess, if your game is doing something unexpected, different, or innovative that a MAJORITY of players aren't going to have knowledge ahead of time for - put in a tutorial. Otherwise, stick it in the manual and let the 1% who don't know how to make a sprite walk in an RPG or what the 'attack' command is read it. =3=
 

Lunawolfcomics

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Playing old games actually shows us something: we don't NEED the tutorials for most games. The problem is that a lot of us are really impatient and don't wish to experiment with anything anymore. Case in point: Wizardry 8. The only guides I can find on the game are all about levelling up, optimum gameplay, that sort of thing. However, the gameplay itself is actually INTUITIVE. It is obvious what you're meant to be doing. Even if you get into a fight in the first minute and muck up, there's practically no consequence for failure at that point unless you're on the hardest difficulty on iron man mode (permadeath) or something.

So unless your game has some complex systems, it doesn't really need a tutorial. I don't think the default RM battle system really needs a tutorial, especially if you allow the player a couple of battles to get used to it, and maybe tell them a couple of controls (enter, esc)!
I agree the default RM battle system doesn't need a tutorial for the most part it's pretty simple and straight forward. But I've had some playtesters who were new to RM that didn't really get the grasp of everything (using items and specials etc) and would fall short in battle. I had to tell them "hey you can heal yourself with this item or use this special attack to kill this boss". So I think incorporating some sort of aid or tutorial would benefit. Even a quick little 5 min one or something. I just made the first battle really easy and it walks through the different battle options available. I just gotta make it skippable for those who are familiar with RM or at least have played the game before. ^_^
 

EternalShadow

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That isn't even required. If a player is unwilling to look at the extra stuff like specials - that's their loss! At least it was in old games. There was an area I struggled in, in Wizardry 8 - until I worked out how to level up! (You have to click a white icon on their portrait) - but because I enjoyed every minute of the game and it was intuitive, I didn't mind starting a new party to find out how to level up (Because if you start a new party, the icon won't be there and its appearance would be obvious in contrast to where the icon has been there for a long time on the experienced party).

I think a much better way to get around the tutorials would be to make the usage of stuff like specials obvious. If a player picks up an item near the start of the game, they'll be looking for the inventory button (Usually i) to equip it and/or the button on the HUD to use that item in battle if it looked usable. Similarly, GIVE the player the special right at the start (show them a status screen or something, if nothing else) and they'll realise they can use it!
 

Lunawolfcomics

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That isn't even required. If a player is unwilling to look at the extra stuff like specials - that's their loss! At least it was in old games. There was an area I struggled in, in Wizardry 8 - until I worked out how to level up! (You have to click a white icon on their portrait) - but because I enjoyed every minute of the game and it was intuitive, I didn't mind starting a new party to find out how to level up (Because if you start a new party, the icon won't be there and its appearance would be obvious in contrast to where the icon has been there for a long time on the experienced party).

I think a much better way to get around the tutorials would be to make the usage of stuff like specials obvious. If a player picks up an item near the start of the game, they'll be looking for the inventory button (Usually i) to equip it and/or the button on the HUD to use that item in battle if it looked usable. Similarly, GIVE the player the special right at the start (show them a status screen or something, if nothing else) and they'll realise they can use it!
Hm, I see your point. In the same time I wouldn't want the player to be at a disadvantage just because they didn't know they had specials/items or didn't know how to use them. I gave the player a few specials at the start as well as an item or two so that in the very beginning of the game they can kind of experiment and see how everything works.
 

EternalShadow

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The best way to get around that is to have something like a door or treasure chest that can be opened right at the start (and has to be opened before you can pass through a door maybe? It could also hold a key as well as skills and items?) before you even come to your first battle.
 

Lunawolfcomics

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The best way to get around that is to have something like a door or treasure chest that can be opened right at the start (and has to be opened before you can pass through a door maybe? It could also hold a key as well as skills and items?) before you even come to your first battle.
Lol that's the exact thing I did. In the opening scene there's a chest that has an item and some money in it, the door to the next room wont open unless the player opens the chest :)
 

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