What do you think about boss positioning?

Kupotepo

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Ahamm, I feel like this question will be a relaxed and easy question, like what is your favorite color? It has to do more about the style of the game creator than what is right or wrong.

When I talk about positioning, I meant the placement of the boss.
  • Placing the boss on the end of the dungeon or the highest level of the tower
  • Placing the boss in front of the treasures
  • Placing the boss in the forest, to make it like an ambush
  • Placing the boss after the danger warming

Scope: Boss & Miniboss
The aspect that should be considered if that boss is necessary to move the story or you intend to be optional.

Please inform me you see more because I will say I do not have much experience in gaming like many of yours. Thank you for letting us know your perspective and taking the time to express your knowledge.

How do you utilize that because I see it is just a basic placement of the boss?
 
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CHKNRAVE

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Bosses at the end of a dungeon / tower makes sense, it's always how it goes, the player knows that the finality of those will be a boss battle. It's up to you whether you want to reinvent the wheel or not, but decreasing difficulty as you progress into a dungeon just doesn't make sense.

Minibosses fit the other 2 situations.
However, make sure there's a save point before a miniboss ambush, the player will lose progress for something completely unexpected, which creates some frustration. Putting a save point before will subtly hint at incoming danger, and reduce the frustration at the game if the player loses. If they didn't pick up on the cue to save, they can only be mad at themselves.
A miniboss in front of treasure is a good idea, especially for optional / bonus treasures. You see an enemy blocking the way towards treasure, so you know it's going to be a tough cookie. But you also know it's an optional challenge and there's a reward for beating it.
 

Kupotepo

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@CHKNRAVE, thank you for your information. I forget about the mandatory or optional part of the boss creation.
 

Wavelength

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Blue! No, I mean yellow I mean aaahhhhhhhhhhhh!!

In my more game-like constructs (e.g. "Climb this ten-stage tower to win the day's mission), the boss is always at the end, a fitting conclusion and climax to the activity.

In my more narrative-heavy, immersive adventures, I try my best to mix it up. Often the boss is at the end (as a final test after you've depleted some of your resources, and so the dungeon can 'conclusively' end with a visible win or loss). However, occasionally boss fights will appear earlier in the dungeon, in the middle or even the beginning - and the end of the dungeon will be surprisingly easy and peaceful, or will require overcoming a challenge of a different sort. This keeps the player on their toes and also prevents the action from becoming so predictable that it feels like a game rather than an adventure. Occasionally I even have boss fights in town, just to mix things up.

It's best to offer Save Points before bosses, so that if the player comes in unprepared and gets wiped (or even just if they play the boss fight poorly) they don't need to redo their last hour of gameplay just to get back to where they were. However, this doesn't need to be a dead giveaway that a boss is coming! If you also include a couple more Save Points at other "random" places in the dungeon (well spread-out points where the player might like to save and put down the game for a bit), then the player won't always be thinking "oh, probably a boss coming now" when they see one. They'll just think "oh, it's probably worth saving since I can."
 

Kupotepo

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@Wavelength, thank you for your helpful ideas. I cannot stop thinking about #Ragnarok Online where the evil NPC summons the boss into the plaza of the big town.
The player sees the NPCs run in disarray in the town that suppose to peace. The town supposes to be a safe zone for players.
The player walks to the inn, but the inn is burning down. That would make the players get shocking reactions lol.

Thank you for all of more remaining me about the importance of keeping reminding players to save.
 
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gabrieldiastche

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So, I think it's something really relative...
It's all a game design perspective for example: In Dark Souls series and Bloodborne, the truth is: We don't know when we gonna fight a boss, it can appear in a LOT of different places, and that is ok, because the games makes you die a lot, so you don't feel so much pain because there is always places near them to save or teleport. So what the game designer do: Put a save point near a boss, but doesn't tell you there is a boss there. I think that is a good way to make the player "happy", because I don't know you guys but I think this "Do you wish to save?" it's just like a big warning: SOMETHING BIG IS COMING! And I am sorry, but we don't feel "danger" if you know it's dangerous right in front of us, we feel "danger"if we don't know what is happening and don't know what to do.

And in fact, I love mini bosses in the middle of the places, I think they give a different pace in the game, I really enjoy to put them a lot of times, sometimes they are more fun to the player than the bosses, because they know it's a different battle, but it's not something so hard, so they try different things but without fear, and you can use the mini boss to make the player learn the new mechanic against a boss that is coming too... There are a lot of things you can do with that :D
 

zzmmorgan

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I just decided that having a mini boss ask the player if they want to save would be a fun way to do it :)
At that point they already know it could be dangerous anyhow. In this game it's not a huge issue anyhow as if you "die" you just get teleported to the inn in the starting town and revived with 1 HP so you can either spend the night to fully recover or use potions or whatever. It's just a convenience thing to save since you can just hit the boss again using a different strategy that hopefully won't get you killed.
 

velan235

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Placing the boss after the danger warning seems one that really makes sense too me, or end of dungeon, but it doesn't always to be dungeon, more of end of chapter / arc.

ie. you can have whole chapter in a town, and your party member scram in town doing events and cutscenes and at the end of chapter, you just discover evil-secret-mafia controlling the town and boss fight happens because you need to get past them to leave the town and continue the plot.

For mini-boss cases, I think it's more flexible to place it, and usually for optional contents like secret treasure or side-quests.
 

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