What features would you like to see more in RPG Maker games

RCXDan

Champion of Brightmoon Tor
Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2019
Messages
51
Reaction score
70
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
As the title says. It's a bit broad but what I mean is specifically stuff to cut down frustration, stuff to streamline the experience and so on.

The scope of this question mainly appiles in terms of standard JRPG-inspired projects, since that's a common type of game here and it's easier to think up answers for something familiar.

Me personally there's quite a few things that could help a game:

* Giving your players the option to skip cutscenes no matter what kind of story you have
* Giving different skills/items/weapons multiple uses, like a healing skill that cures HP and removes a few common status effects

* Categorizing things so the player doesn't get overwhelmed (aka. color coding certain enemies so you know what element they are without even having to guess, color coding chests so you know what contents are inside before you open, etc.)

The reason I put this one up is because if you give the player a base template for the things they'll find, they'll be able to recognize it later.

* If the player keeps getting stuck on a hard segment, allow them to bypass it in a different way.

* Reminders for the player to get [x] thing, especially if it's late in the game

And so on.
 

NinjaKittyProductions

Professional Murder Hobos
Veteran
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
403
Reaction score
352
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Giving your players the option to skip cutscenes no matter what kind of story you have
Categorizing things so the player doesn't get overwhelmed (aka. color-coding certain enemies so you know what element they are without even having to guess, color coding chests so you know what contents are inside before you open, etc.)
I agree with most of what you have suggested except for the two that I have quoted. I could see categorizing items so as they are easier to find, but color-coding enemies seem obtrusive from a developer's view. Unless your battle system is supposed to be easy, color-coding enemies take away from the "Ah HA!" moment when you find that enemy's weakness/es. Just handing the player everything can make for boring gameplay in my opinion. Also, adding the option to skip cutscenes seems like you are telling the player that your story is horrible so you might as well skip it and just kill things. If your game is like that it is fine, but most RPGs are built around telling a story.

Please note that I am not attacking the post just stating an opinion.

That being said, I do agree that having more than one way to accomplish a goal in an RPG would be welcomed. Kind of like Pathfinder or D&D... you could either kill the dragon, sneak around it, or try to reason with it. There are few RPGs that actually feature this.
 

RCXDan

Champion of Brightmoon Tor
Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2019
Messages
51
Reaction score
70
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Also, adding the option to skip cutscenes seems like you are telling the player that your story is horrible so you might as well skip it and just kill things. If your game is like that it is fine, but most RPGs are built around telling a story.
See, I know what you mean and I agree with your point, but here's what I have to say in response.

The reason I say having the option to skip cutscenes is good is not to imply that the story is bad, but rather to minimize frustration from repeat visits.

If the game is really hard/obtuse and you have the player repeating the same cutscene or gameplay sequence over and over, especially if it's very long, you will drain the player's motivation to keep playing.

The most infamous example of this I can remember is the Riku-Ansem cutscene from the original Kingdom Hearts (pre HD remix) - two minutes of cutscene you will be forced to rewatch every time you die, which is a high probablity for newer players. It adds up lost time very quickly.

Point is that it's there for convenience.
 

NinjaKittyProductions

Professional Murder Hobos
Veteran
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
403
Reaction score
352
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
If the game is really hard and you have the player repeating the same cutscene or gameplay sequence over and over, especially if it's very long, you will drain the player's motivation to keep playing.
I can see that. What if a developer activates a switch after the cutscene and has an autosave or even just opens the save menu after a lengthy cutscene allowing the player to save afterward and avoid said cutscene again :). That would be another feature I would like to see.
 

TheoAllen

Self-proclaimed jack of all trades
Veteran
Joined
Mar 16, 2012
Messages
4,718
Reaction score
5,396
First Language
Indonesian
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
RPG Maker games specifically
  • Skip cutscene.
  • Peek the enemy stats or at least a state description window/tooltip that is applied to them and ours.
  • Actually use color code to label place name, someone's name, or any important word in the message window or description window.
  • Message log.
  • More free turn battle system.
  • Actually use the description window to explain how the skill works instead of a funny sentence that has nothing to explain how the skill works. Alternatively, a dedicated window for skill description.
  • Visual encounters
but color-coding enemies seem obtrusive from a developer's view. Unless your battle system is supposed to be easy, color-coding enemies take away from the "Ah HA!" moment when you find that enemy's weakness/es. Just handing the player everything can make for boring gameplay in my opinion.
I don't agree if you give the enemy's weakness information to the player leads to boring gameplay. If it's actually boring, then your battle probably is already boring in general. Is it fun to try every possible skill just to see what is their weakness, then when you already know the weakness, you've moved on to a different place with different encounters?
 

RCXDan

Champion of Brightmoon Tor
Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2019
Messages
51
Reaction score
70
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Just a word of caution about giving vital information to the player by colour coding - a significant number of people have varying degrees of colour blindness.
Makes sense.

An alternate suggestion I had was to have sprites modified depending on what the chest contains/monster does, like how the Varia suit in the original Game Boy release of Metroid 2 has physical differences to stand out from the standard Power Suit due to the system's lack of color.
 

NinjaKittyProductions

Professional Murder Hobos
Veteran
Joined
Jul 9, 2013
Messages
403
Reaction score
352
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Is it fun to try every possible skill just to see what is their weakness, then when you already know the weakness, you've moved on to a different place with different encounters?
I would say that this depends on the number of skills available in your game. I do find it enjoyable when I have found the enemy's weakness, not when it is just handed over but everybody is different and I understand that.

An alternate suggestion I had was to have sprites modified depending on what the chest contains/monster does
To me, this is a better way to express to the player the difference in enemies. I would be down for this in more RPGs.
 

PixeLockeT

Demon Lord Lady
Veteran
Joined
Jan 11, 2020
Messages
63
Reaction score
71
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
N/A
Skipping cut scenes only after they've been viewed once (unskippable), IMO. If i can go around skipping all the scenes, especially by accident, I'll probably quit the game as it feels like you're saying "story bad, here's something to forego that and get back to gameplay".

If you color code your enemies/chests, I likely won't play at all. I'm here to be at least a little challenged, so you better have something to offset all that handholding to make me want to stick around.

I like the "multiple ways to get around a segment" idea though. But i find that many indie games (that I play) have something like this
 

RCXDan

Champion of Brightmoon Tor
Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2019
Messages
51
Reaction score
70
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
If you color code your enemies/chests, I likely won't play at all. I'm here to be at least a little challenged, so you better have something to offset all that handholding to make me want to stick around.
Okay, you had me until you brought this one up because it honestly, legitimately makes no sense. (I agree with the skip cutscene after the first watch thing, because truthfully I'd like that to be a more common feature.)

Basic visual cohesion is handholding? How in the world does that impact difficulty at all, like seriously. Let's be real, if the colorcoding actually makes the game so easy that it doesn't have a challenge, it's not the color coding's fault - it's a failure of the entire game's design.

Like what's so wrong with "red = fire enemy" or "red = item chest and blue = equipment chest"? If you design your game well enough, then the real challenge would come from the strategy needed to defeat said enemy and not whether you can recognize what its weakness is.
 
Last edited:

CraneSoft

Filthy Degenerate
Veteran
Joined
Apr 16, 2016
Messages
110
Reaction score
94
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Most of your suggestions are valid and are helpful features to have in a game so I won't go in-depth on them. However I'll put my 2 cents on this one part:

* Categorizing things so the player doesn't get overwhelmed (aka. color coding certain enemies so you know what element they are without even having to guess, color coding chests so you know what contents are inside before you open, etc.)
While there is nothing wrong by categorizing things via visual cohesion, keep in mind that an element of mystery is often required to encourage exploration (Eg. I look forward to open chests because I don't know what's in them it could be useless junk or some really useful equipment) as well as building tension to tackle the unknown. Even it's just for convenience, providing too much information this way may be counterproductive and the player might actually feel overwhelmed by having to remember what color/template means what etc. even for the basic stuff. Your point could be better phrased such as "Color-coding the more important elements such as dangerous enemies that could kill an unprepared party, valuable chests that actually contain good stuff" so it doesn't sound like info-dumping. From my experience, a lot of people do not pay attention to minor visual indicators and simply get used to them from normal play, so you may want to take this into consideration while categorizing things.
 

RCXDan

Champion of Brightmoon Tor
Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2019
Messages
51
Reaction score
70
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
Your point could be better phrased such as "Color-coding the more important elements such as dangerous enemies that could kill an unprepared party, valuable chests that actually contain good stuff" so it doesn't sound like info-dumping. From my experience, a lot of people do not pay attention to minor visual indicators and simply get used to them from normal play, so you may want to take this into consideration while categorizing things.
See, I appreciate the meaning now. I should stress that I would not like the category thing to be an unbreakable rule that has to be followed to the letter, because honestly I do like the element of surprise.

Color coding enemies based on how dangerous they are would also be a nice idea.
 

TheoAllen

Self-proclaimed jack of all trades
Veteran
Joined
Mar 16, 2012
Messages
4,718
Reaction score
5,396
First Language
Indonesian
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
keep in mind that an element of mystery is often required to encourage exploration (Eg. I look forward to open chests because I don't know what's in them it could be useless junk or some really useful equipment) as well as building tension to tackle the unknown. Even it's just for convenience, providing too much information this way may be counterproductive and the player might actually feel overwhelmed by having to remember what color/template means what etc.
While there is nothing wrong with an element of mystery, there must be at least an indicator that this chest gives good stuff, and this is junk. A toolbox always gives you tools. A medic box always gives you heal. Don't you feel relieved when you're at low hp and you see a medic box? That is the reason why you should do it. It is not always color, can be a shape, and it is also easier to recognize and colorblind people can recognize it as well. Besides, if every chest looked the same, personally, I would hate it. This probably gives me junk, and I had to check everything making sure I didn't miss a good stuff. Besides, you can always add an element of surprise. There's a shiny box and you thought it contains a legendary weapon, but no, it's a trap/mimic!

I do agree about do not overcategorize it though.
 

woootbm

Super Sand Legend
Veteran
Joined
Apr 26, 2014
Messages
176
Reaction score
103
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Not sure why everyone is getting hung up on the color-coding chest thing. It sounds like a harmless, pseudo-OCD design idea. Certainly not as grating as map makers who make everything perfectly symmetrical. As far as the mystery goes, you can't see the chest until you hit the room it's in. And it's not like "equipment" perfectly explains what will be in it, either. Is it a plate chest? A shield? A cloth cap? If anything, it opens up the possibility of using carrot-on-a-stick design. Say your game has optional crafting. Someone who doesn't like crafting will skip over a crafting chest, while someone who loves crafting will chase after it. It sounds like you guys are designing with the idea that every player must enjoy every pixel of my game or something. Don't think like that.

Anyway, here are some things from me on the original topic:

- Standard turn-based combat. I don't get any of the combat systems where you pick a move and wait to see how it turns out. I want to: do thing > thing happens. Not: do thing > do thing > do thing > everything happens, chaos!

- Have interesting combat. I'm just gonna put this out there: element systems =/= an entire combat system. You can't just have an entire game based on elemental strengths/weaknesses. I mean, obviously you can. Look at all the money Pokemon continues to make. But they're lazy and overly simple and everyone does them. You need to stand out. You need to have new things. I don't mean some mind-bending, ultra original, years of programming idea. You just have to have added stuff. Nuance, features, things that make me have to go through the tutorial and learn your game's systems.

- Always dash or no dash. I don't want to have to hold a button 100% of the time to walk around. It's not 1996 anymore.

- Visual encounters. How they chase the player (or don't) and how they respawn or how necessary they are to fight is all up to you. But random encounters are aggravating and outdated. The randomness leads to that feeling of a lack of control, and a lack of control is generally felt as a punishment or a nuisance in a video game since the whole point is being in control.

- Save anywhere. No, you're not making the next Dark Souls. Calm down.

- No default characters. At least use the character generator! It's right there!

There's so much more. But I don't want to think about this all day, heh.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Latest Threads

Latest Posts

Latest Profile Posts

Seems like people have stopped looking both ways before crossing the road nowadays. Blindly walking out into a into a road only ends in disaster.
Just finished planning out the skeleton of the main quest line of my new game. I'm so excited for it!
Integrating Jason Perry's japan tile set while listening to Murray Atkinson's Heaven and Earth background music.
I forgot I had an account on rpgmakercentral lol
"What do you think the best place to visit on this cold days?" "Hell..."

Forum statistics

Threads
94,539
Messages
921,738
Members
124,406
Latest member
keyboardjockey
Top