What are themes in your RPG game(s)?

What are themes in your game(s)?


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Kupotepo

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Hello everyone here. I hope everyone is doing ok and stay safe.

I am just doing a simple survey about people in this forum. See how your outlook or attitude has changed so far. Thank you for speaking your mind and letting me know. I appreciate your time.
A theme is the creative products’ central, unifying concept. A theme evokes a universal human experience and I hope no one who is an extraterrestrial or a pet reading this.
  1. Love - Romance and Friendship; Love can conquer incredible obstacles, like class divides, disapproving family members, and disaster [Romeo and Juliet], Risking everything for the person that person loves.
  2. Humanity vs. technology- Science fiction offers opportunities to explore fear about technology [Robots uprising]; AI robot god who turns against humans; murderous spaceship AI.
  3. Sacrifice - The Lord of the Rings; characters are willing to sacrifice themselves for others and the greater good; characters redeemed themselves through the virtue of sacrifice.
  4. Good vs. evil - The Star Wars; The good and evil characters are clear of who is evil and who is good. Viewers do not have to think about it.
  5. Death - You might this theme is a downer, but it does not have to be. To the Moon RPG game is a good game about a death wish-fulfilling and is feel bittersweet. We’re reminded that death isn’t always just or fair. It is inevitable and it comes for us all. Or explore the world after living [Living Dead].
  6. Perseverance - the main character is an underdog who triumphs over long odds through determination and hard work. Ultimately, the message is that perseverance is stronger than talent or a gift.
  7. Justice - The Robin Hood legend; In a time when the normal systems of justice have been corrupted, allowing the powerful to exploit the weak and the wealthy to leech off the poor, the hero[Robin Hood] becomes an outlaw so that true justice can prevail. Vigilantism; Frontier justice [Citizen's arrest] [7.1] Revenge - Someone feels the someone has done wrong to them real or imaginary. He or she thinks revenge is justified and plotting revenge.
  8. Power and corruption - Macbeth; The Hunger Games; from power over other people through to power over life or death itself. And with any type of power comes the potential for corruption, often explored as misuse of power or the lengths to which someone will go to achieve it. 8.1) Negative Impact of Greed: we learn to let go of the thirst for excessive greed and appreciate the finer things in life like happiness, family, and friends.
  9. Survival - All creatures share the basic instinct for survival. The dystopian theme of any creative product reflects the uncertainty of our world.
  10. 9.1 ) War - This theme usually intended to display the horrors of wars. Fiction stories are featuring battles and some death. [War and Peace]
  11. Courage and heroism - Tales of heroism and courage in the face of adversity have been popular with many children and adults. The hero's journey, not the people's journey. Ok, people's journey who is later revealed to be royalty or connect with gods/goddesses blood. The most common are 'traditional' hero stories about characters who are essentially destined for greatness, and, on the flip side, stories about 'unlikely' heroes who achieve greatness despite the odds.
  12. Individual vs. society - A story with this theme revolves around the main characters who are unhappy with the society they live in or some level of dissatisfaction. [The Giver; Nineteen Eighty-Four].
  13. Man Versus Nature - I forget this popular theme for the current events; the central theme is mostly respected nature or fear nature. Natural disasters, diseases, and something biology. Example: 127 Hours, The Birds, Cast Away, Into the Wild, Jaws, The Perfect Storm, The Wind.
  14. [3.3] Parenthood/Family Drama - A character has a family and raising kids. And some silly family drama [SIM simulator and Stardew Valley].
  15. Coming of age: Growing up is not easy. This is one in which children or young adults mature through various events and learn valuable life lessons in the process.
  16. Fate and free will: It can be easy to give yourself a headache when debating whether life is pre-determined or a function of your free will. The theme of fate versus free will delves deeper into these questions to hopefully provide the answer that you are looking for.
  17. Circle of Life; Suffering
  18. Faith versus Doubt: The theme of faith versus doubt analyzes why you should continue to keep a grip on your faith in the face of adversity.
  19. Fear: A debilitating fear can negatively impact your self-image and prevent you from doing the things you love.
  20. Identity Crisis; a journey of self-discovery; Midlife crisis+
  21. Existentialism vs. Nihilism
I am stopped now before I list all of the morality that human values.
Sorry, I am out of the space to put more on the poll. But, I am thankful if you want to explain yourself more.
 
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iCed

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Hi @Kupotepo ! Excellent idea to share our outlook about that !

I'm starting a project concerning several of the subjects you proposed. Among them, humanity vs technology and individual vs society are underlying, but in a different way : after a great collapse, civilization has transformed into something better, until a special event gives us clues about what we did wrong in the past (well.. today :wink: ) with technology and individualism, and comes back.
Memory is the key to understand and fight the evil (is it really evil or just our flaws we dug deep under?), in a classic rpg kind of way.
Relationship between characters is very important too, as it makes the story clearer along the game.
I'm curious to see other folks from the forum participate to your survey !
 

TheoAllen

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I don't know what theme I'm making right now, probably the closest one would be survival (with a little bit "versus the evil" element, but not really). But not the way you described.

The basic premise is about a party of three went into a dungeon and got lost. Now they need to find a way to get out of the dungeon (dungeon crawler with most of the aspect is on the gameplay) which is, survival? However, while at it, they managed to find out that there's an evil lurking calamity that is threatening the whole kingdom. The calamity is dormant, but it will soon awaken. The party needs to get out alive and warn their kingdom about this.
 

BitBrosGames

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Maybe the closest one to me would be Courage and heroism... but it's more like adventure for adventure's sake and life's goals. :kaopride:
 

FirestormNeos

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I know this is a really dumb thing for me to complain about, but what you listed are topics/subject matter, not themes.
Theme is what your story says ABOUT said topics; either in the form of questions it asks/raises about the subject, or observations/answers it makes about the subject/the questions asked.

Example:
"War" is not a theme. "When someone strives to avoid war by denying people justice, they end up creating conditions that make war inevitable" is a theme. "Exploring the negative impact war has on the human rights of bystanders" is a theme. "war bad, yo" is more of an aesop than a theme, but themes are a broad concept and can include aesops if the aesop goes into enough detail.

Yeesh, I sound like my high school english teacher. I mind, I don't personally mind, but y'all probably do. X_X
 
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Parallax Panda

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Picked ”Love” and ”Sacrifice” but I’d also liked to have added ”Comedy/Humor”.

Anyway, sweet poll. I voted just to see what everyone else voted! :D
 

Kupotepo

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@FirestormNeos, that is true I get into the further detail. I do not want people have and write two pages essays about why they believe in a certain way. And moderators have work extra hard. lol. I cannot too much detail. It can into further philosophy that can go into politics of war controversies. Good examples for war relating themes.:kaoslp:

I’d also liked to have added ”Comedy/Humor”.
I do not think Comedy/Humor is a theme because I can make a joke with Comedy/Humor about all of the story's themes.:kaoluv: I think Comedy/Humor is considered a tone/mood because you intended your story to be funny overtone.

@FirestormNeos, What are themes in your RPG game(s)? They don't have to be the list I created. Thank you. I can do a hand count.
 
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cthulhusquid

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I clicked all of them... But if I go by each game specifically:

Battle Castle: Love, Sacrifice, Good vs Evil, Death, Perseverance, Power & Corruption, War, and Courage & Heroism.

The Wastes: Love, Humanity vs Technology, Perseverance, Justice, Survival, Man vs Nature.

The Cube Trail: Good vs Evil, Perseverance, Justice, Power & Corruption, Courage & Heroism.

Even though they share a lot of the same ones, each game is focused on completely different areas. Battle Castle is focused on learning new things, personal sacrifice vs the greater good, the effects of war, the effects of fear on society and people, the bonds of friendship, and heroism in trying times. The Wastes is focused on the struggle for survival, the past coming back to haunt the present, the bonds of family, and dealing with people both good and bad in an uncaring post-disaster society. The Cube Trail is focused on individual heroism, justice against those who wronged you, and dealing with unfair adversity. The Cube Trail is a lot more simple, and it's designed that way.
 

Ninjakillzu

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I clicked on most of them.

Collector has:
  • Humanity vs Technology: This is an extremely common theme in cyberpunk. Are you still human if the majority of your body is replaced by steel and silicon? What if your consciousness is part of the internet? Are robots, androids, and AI allowed to have the same rights as humans? Will advanced technology create a better, more equal society or one further divided between wealth classes? In the game, you can use a bunch of cyberware, including cyberlimbs (cybernetic arms/legs), neuralware (smartgun links, neural processors, etc), co-processors (adrenal/endorphin/speed boosters), bioware (vat grown organs, dermalweave, etc), cyberoptics (magnifiers, flashers, etc), implants (cybernetic organs, subdermal armor, etc), and chipware (silicon chips that affect memory and ability).
  • Death: Can you truly be dead if you can upload your consciousness to the internet or a data storage device? This is often related to Humanity vs Technology.
  • Perseverance: Do you have the will to fight through the scum of the streets? What about infiltrate corporations? You'll have to deal with thoroughly rotten situations in order to get your memories back.
  • Justice: You can fight against gangs, and be a vigilante.
  • Power and Corruption/Individual vs Society: I can assure you that there will be parts of the game where your little group has to go up against the might of mega corporations. You can even join criminal organizations and do their dirty work if you so choose.
My other two projects aren't far enough along for me to have specific themes.
 

Kupotepo

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@iCed, thank you for clarifying your choices. Good luck with your development.
@TheoAllen, thank you for expressing your though. It is ok. This survey is not counting against you. You change what you want. It is your game after all. Good luck with your development.
@BitBrosGames, thank you for your input and congratulation on the success of your complete game.
@Parallax Panda, thank you for taking the survey.
@cthulhusquid, thank you for your continued giving me your input.
@Ninjakillzu, thank you for your continued giving me your input.
 
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Black Pagan

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Well, My Game is about a Girl who is traumatized at Childhood at the loss of her Father who was everything to her. So she goes on a quest which was abandoned by him, following his footsteps. This is the Introduction part. But it soon turns into a Survival / Adventure game, She is an Archaeologist that tries to discover an Ancient ruins.
 

gstv87

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would be spoiling a lot by mentioning it, but I've always been open about it being about war, and the people who fight it.
people who've read books or watched movies about that theme, would know what to expect: shades of grey in both sides, soldiers who fight the battle, commanders who talk politics, civilians who try to make a living, cities that see flags go up and down, etc.
 

Kupotepo

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@Black Pagan, thank you for responding.
@gstv87, thank you for your input and for taking the survey. If you are thinking so, I will respect your judgment. I think many people here make their individual games and they are really busy. That is what I think. Thank you for your time.
 

FirestormNeos

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@FirestormNeos, that is true I get into the further detail. I do not want people have and write two pages essays about why they believe in a certain way. And moderators have work extra hard. lol. I cannot too much detail. It can into further philosophy that can go into politics of war controversies. Good examples for war relating themes.:kaoslp:
Understandable. Plus, English isn't exactly the first language of a lot of folks here, so I can imagine a topic as lofty as thematic discussion would be needlessly taxing on folks and would be rife with miscommunication, if it wasn't already.

@FirestormNeos, What are themes in your RPG game(s)? They don't have to be the list I created. Thank you. I can do a hand count.
I've gone through a number of RPG Maker projects trying to tell a very specific story; here are the topics I've been hoping the finished project will cover:

Compassion Vs. Creativity- Perhaps the primary theme I want to address is the conflict that arises between the love for other people and the love for stories, art, expression. In most media, the potential existence of such a conflict is denied; the few that don't outright deny its existence being dystopian sci-fi american literature that gets taught in high schools, in which the story almost overwhelmingly takes the side of creativity. I want my story to deconstruct this line of thinking in the form of a Man Vs. Self tragedy where the main character becomes both the morally-bankrupt antagonist who fears that the art they love is doomed to be forgotten and is willing to do whatever it takes to save it, and the morally-ambiguous protagonist who also fears said art being doomed, but is unwilling to save it because they know doing so requires hurting other people.

Romance/Sexuality- Although by no means a 100% universal human experience per se (shoutout to the guys, gals, and non-binary pals at the aspec community), it's still a concept that's widely understood and recognizable by the overwhelming majority of people. The project I've been attempting to make is one that aims to demonstrate that romantic love does not have to be "subtle" or a "slow burn" to be a good story experience/element that people want to engage with. I also want to demonstrate that relationships with other people-- romantic, but also family/friendship --are supposed to make you happy, not tired/miserable/ashamed of yourself.

There's one other theme/conflict/concept/topic/idea I want my story to cover, but it's kinda political, and I don't want to make mods' job any harder than it has to be. If I get the greenlight from a mod, I'll edit it into this post. Don't pester me and DEFINITELY do not pester the mods about this; I'll send a PM if you're really that darned curious.
 

Kupotepo

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@FirestormNeos. thank you for understand because I do not want to talk about war crimes and atrocities. I do not want to trigger people into painful memories. Now you are tricked to talk about it. Haha:kaohi:

Thank you for taking the survey. It is your game and you can do whatever you are desired. You do not have to justified for anyone.:kaoluv:
 

Kupotepo

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@FirestormNeos, it is alright. The cat is out of the bag.

I want my story to deconstruct this line of thinking in the form of a Man Vs. Self tragedy where the main character becomes both the morally-bankrupt antagonist who fears that the art they love is doomed to be forgotten and is willing to do whatever it takes to save it, and the morally-ambiguous protagonist who also fears said art being doomed, but is unwilling to save it because they know doing so requires hurting other people.
Wow, that sounds like an emotionally complex game, and people with an art major will like your game. Let me guess however I cannot go into detail here because I will get trouble with mods for sure.
Freedom of Expression vs. Too graphic for public/minor.

The project I've been attempting to make is one that aims to demonstrate that romantic love does not have to be "subtle" or a "slow burn" to be a good story experience/element that people want to engage with.
I am kind of know what you try to make, but I do not know the forum allows the adult contents to what degree. You can talk to the moderator on the specific on the private message.

I also want to demonstrate that relationships with other people-- romantic, but also family/friendship --are supposed to make you happy, not tired/miserable/ashamed of yourself.
It is true that anyone prefers a happy family if they can choose. Anyhow, it sounds like a fun family drama game. Good luck with your game making.
 
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FirestormNeos

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Wow, that sounds like an emotionally complex game, and people with an art major will like your game.
Indeed. It's the reason I keep having to start over projects; constantly needing to reworking the story from the ground up so that in the likely event something goes wrong with the story, it's not because of something that went wrong at the drawing board, which means I don't have to start from scratch if I ever put a finished draft of this project into the hands of an honest-to-goodness story editor.

Let me guess however I cannot go into detail here because I will get trouble with mods for sure.
Freedom of Expression vs. Too graphic for public/minor.
Not quite, but very close!

I am kind of know what you try to make, but I do not know the forum allows the adult contents to what degree. You can talk to the moderator on the specific on the private message.
Well, it's definitely not going to be an "h game," so it'd be fine for me to go in depth; I just don't want to go in-depth because I don't want to derail this topic any further then I already have. '^_^
 

Punamaagi

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I chose 'Perseverance' and 'Courage and heroism'. I also considered adding 'Individual vs. society' to my vote, but in my game, the characters don't struggle with/against the society as much as fate/coincidence. While I'm probably not going to get too deep and philosophical (because I'm not sure if I'd be able to do that subtly), the game touches on the dichotomy between freedom/order or destiny/coincidence; whether things happen by chance or have been determined beforehand, and whether (or how) the heroes can fight against something that seems inevitable.
 
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Ventusgermany

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The game´s theme I´m working on (It´s named "Music, Mystery & Sinister Spirits") is ultimatly about overcoming nihilism, psychoanalysis, spirituality and art/music. So I find it kind of hard to cast a vote in your poll. I voted love, because that is as close at it gets.

It´s a coming of age story (mixed with musical elements, fully illustrated with punky-art and accompanied by an original OST) of the female protagonist who grew up as an orphan and slowly learns to use her unique heritage and traumata to slowly heal herself, her friends and maybe the world by making music and creating art, all while battling evil supernatural entities and disovering the truth about gnosis, spiritualism and her very own soul :) .

368d5d90-c6c3-44db-807e-ad9c17cf22c4_rw_1200 (1).jpg

It´s currently being developed in german, but will be localized when finished. So until then,
for all german speakers, here is one of the cutscenes that will be in the game at some point.

 
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