What's the best designed town you've ever seen?

jonthefox

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Of all the jrpgs you've played, which do you think was the best designed town, and why? Note: 3D doesn't count; only tile-based! Bonus points if it's from an rpg maker game.

I'll start. For me, I have to say Narshe in FF6. It looks great but is also very distinctive, and really captures the feel of this sleepy mining town.
 

BCj

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Not really a town but the dynamic castle/base in Siikoden 1/2 was really nice. I took hours to explore every nook and cranny :D
 

Uranium

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Suikoden 2 is the best JRPG ever made. Any town in that game.
 

Arctica

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On the subject of Suikoden: Suikoden 2 - Gregminster. Suikoden III - probably Zexen. Suikoden V - that's most definitely Sol Falena. Just read the "3D doesn't count" part.
 

Finnuval

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I too Will have to say Suikoden (most of Them) has some of the best designed towns and villages mostly because they have a lot to Them even if there are only a handful of houses, have a lived in feeling And very strong distinct atmosphere. And they are layed out in such a way you can find your way but still can get a liitle lost aswell
 

ShadowDragon

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from the games I know, even it's not the best, but best to navigate through
I would say Zelda Link to the past / Link between world :p

Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology might be also a better choice.

I dont know the suikoden at all :p but my genre is probably something
not in anyones place XD
 

Aesica

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Really any of the towns in FF4/FF6. They're all small and everything's laid out in a way that makes it easy to find what you're looking for. Not a fan of huge sprawling mess towns at all.
 

Milennin

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I really liked the towns in Golden Sun, everything about them. The lay-outs, variety in tilesets, the catchy OST's, some memorable NPC's, and secrets to find in them.
 

Wavelength

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Hopefully pre-rendered 2D rather than strictly tile-based won't DQ me, but I was a huge fan of some of the mid-game towns in Star Ocean 2, such as Lacour, Harley, and Hilton. I can't find a perfect video that shows off the full breadth and beauty of these towns, but this partial walkthrough video at least shows off a few of the districts in some of these towns.

These towns were large but easy to navigate, and IIRC each of these three towns had distinctive "quarters" which, like many real towns, organized their functions and feels (a harbor district, a shopping quarter, a central castle area, a residential neighborhood, etc.). Often, commercial districts had several shops of the same type in direct competition with each other. This made the towns feel like they had real identities, rather than just being "a safe area where I can go to an Inn and get the next step on the gear treadmill". Interestingly, I think that the variety of noncombat mechanics in the game (Item Crafting, Pickpocketing, etc.) also helped to make the towns feel fleshed-out as well.

They were beautifully drawn and included just enough detail to feel rich and evocative without so much that it became messy. The beautiful music certainly didn't hurt either!
 

tiabuni

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I don't know what makes a town objectively well designed, but Pokémon towns, in general, from Gens 1 to 4, give me warm feelings. They tend to be small and only have things that are actually relevant. For me, there is a lot of beauty in simplicity, and in keeping things small and tidy. I am excluding Gen 5 because they added some spicy 3D elements to the towns, but I have no problem with the town designs in that game.
 

jonthefox

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@Wavelength yes I don't think that counts, as those maps aren't made with tiles which is the relevant skill I'm interested in....though I agree the game world looks fantastic in Star Ocean 2!
 

FirestormNeos

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My favorite RPG town would probably be Goldenrod City for Pokemon Heartgold/Soulsilver, because I'm a lazy b**** who wants all her quality of life content (name-rating, department store, Global Terminal back when DS Wi-Fi was still active, casino Voltorb Flip, the Pokathlon Arena to the immediate north and the Day-care to the immediate south, and the Magnet Train that's the fastest form of travel between Johto & Kanto after the credits) all in one easily-accessible space. Sue me.

Relocate Kurt, the Move Tutors from Blackthorn, and the Safari Zone into Goldenrod, and it'd be the TFS!PerfectCell of Videogame cities for me.
 

watermark

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If we're talking tile-based, I will have to say Telermain from the dos CRPG Magic Candle 2. Yeah, it's a real old game. For those of you who don't know it, imagine an Elder Scrolls town built using 2D tiles.

I love JRPGs as much as anyone here, but a lot of it, especially the earlier titles, is designed for a railed experience. Towns in JRPGs are more like pit stops to be traversed in the general storyline: you stop in one, "refuel" your hp and items, buy some upgrades, look for the signpost to the next destination and away you go.

They work very efficiently for that purpose. Therefore you actually don't want JRPG towns to be very complicated as that could slow down the main story. You want your stores to be in convenient locations and the flavor chatter kept to a minimum.

Telermain, on the other hand, is a town full of stuff to do with a diverse cast of residents. It's like a fully fleshed out DnD town. You can spend a lot of time getting lost in it just doing random stuff. This kind of design is great for players who like to explore an open world rather than follow the main story.

Again, a railed game is not necessarily bad. It's just a different game.
 

OgreKiddo

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Loved many of the cities in FF9, also loved Shibuya in TWEWY

#1 will always be Lea Monde from Vagrant Story tho
 

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