Kayzee

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Kayzee last won the day on August 10

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About Kayzee

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    FAIRY DUST! FAIRY DUST FOR EVERYONE! WHEE!
  • Birthday 07/27/1979

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    Fairyland!
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    cute things, fairies, snuggles, kisses, fairy dust, naughty fun time

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  1. There are probobly other things that can be done with normal battles to make them more interesting tactically too if you don't find a good alternative. Maybe multiple rows or party formations? Maybe other ways of doing turn order? Maybe reaction abilities? Multitechs? Not sure about what scripts are available,
  2. Yeah, all the 'ABS' scripts I have seen for VX Ace are pretty darn awful. The problem is, if you don't like the normal battle system (and I don't blame you not to) there really aren't a lot of options for a good replacement. Though it seems to me like the biggest problem with the normal JRPG-style battle system isn't really that it's turn-based, it's that there aren't all that many actual meaningful tactical choices. I can see the appeal that 'ABS' scripts might have for adding a bit of tactical depth with moving and attacking, but personally I think most of them end up being button mashers anyway, even if the scripts didn't suck. Personally I would be more interested in tactical RPG style combat or something similar. I think there are at least a few tactical RPG combat scripts, though I haven't checked it out much myself. Ideally if i were making a game I would personally want to use something like the combat in roguelikes, Ultima 1-6, and Live-a-Live. I like to call it 'Single-Step Tactical Combat'. It works better with RPG Maker's grid based movement then a full ABS, gets rid of a lot of the slog that tactical RPG combat can have, and can be fairly tactically deep. But I haven't been able to find a script for it and haven't had much luck making it myself (I got pretty far, got basic movement working, but I had loads of trouble properly mixing in non-movement actions like attacks).
  3. Well, it's not that you don't have a point there. But while I do think there are a lot of things that do come down different tastes, I also think it's worth it to take a good hard look at the tools that people commonly reach for in our common design toolbox to ask if they are the best tools. A skilled craftsman can still use a poor tool well, but that doesn't mean it is a good tool. A lot of it has to do with what the designer is actually trying to do, but I don't think that means there aren't some ideas and practices that are better or worse then others. Maybe that's the difference I guess between us. I am more interested in taking a hard look at how and why games are designed the way they are and the tools game designers tend to use and why. You seem more interested in something else, or maybe you are just apologetic for the people who use those tools. At this point it doesn't matter, but please believe me when I say I am not trying to attack any game devs or point out flaws to hurt anyone. And while I have my own (justified I feel) criticisms about the business side of the game industry, I think most of the actual designers down in the trenches are still doing the best job they can and the ratio of good games to bad games probobly hasn't really changed all that much since the time I think of as gaming's peek. Whatever I feel about the industry this isn't about that. Also, it's not like I don't read/watch reviews at least. Most of the games you recommended just don't seem like they appeal much to me anyway. But most of that does come down to taste half the time, whatever flaws I think they have. I am very very picky about a lot of things and little things tend to annoy me more then they used to, but a game doesn't have to be perfect to hold my interest. I could complain all day about some aspects of Undertale for example, but I still think it's a great game (or at least a great story hiding in a so-so to good game's skin).
  4. It's a basic small part of my answer, and if it's more common in modern games, okay then. All I know is that I haven't personally seen a lot of games where that is the norm. Does it happen? Yes. But are you talking about one or two examples of one or two things that a few games do in particular instances, or are you saying the whole concept of quests has been radically different in the vast majority of modern games then in the games I have played? Because it doesn't seem like they are. If that is ignorance talking, that is ignorance talking. I think I have explained exactly why I don't like quest systems from many many angles, given a basic argument why I think they are flawed. and if you don't agree that's fine. But the more you keep playing semantic games, trying to make the whole argument out to be pointless, appealing to popularity, accusing me of not knowing anything because I haven't played the exact same games you have, accuse me of being crazy because I don't think the exact same things about some things as you, acting as if one or two examples of a few things that managed to side step parts of the issue suddenly solves the whole thing, say I don't make any sense without refuting my actual points and instead trying to skirt around them, and making this more and more personal as time goes on, well, I don't have any real reason to see you as an authority here. And that's kinda how arguments go on the internet and I realize mine are just as flawed in many ways. Here is the thing though: I am giving my opinion and trying to explain it as best I can why I find something flawed. Maybe it ultimately does come down to personal preference, maybe not. I think I am being relatively reasonable, and I don't really think I can convince anyone of anything. I think it's a relevant opinion. Yet you come in, like you always do, and try and convince everyone I am crazy and wrong for daring to give radical opinions. If I am crazy and wrong, there is no need to argue. So, one last time, to sum up what I have been saying one last time: I think the idea of 'quests' seems more about giving the player busywork to do rather then engaging gameplay, or even telling a compelling story really. I think a lot of them are filled with inconvenient hoops you have to jump through, tedious interfaces, and a lot of them ruin immersion. I think the whole idea of organizing a game based around giving the players 'things to do' seems forced and leads into this mindset of giving lists of chores rather then making fun gameplay. I think the same basic goals can be accomplished better by instead adding more interesting gameplay mechanics to engage the player and focusing more on making a world that feels alive and reactive, even if it is only so in prescripted ways. That's it, no examples, no appeals, no huge paragraphs trying to convince you. That's my opinion. Agree or not, I have not seen anything from you yet that has changed it, and I doubt I ever will. And consequently I am not going to waste my time trying to make you agree, my only goal has been to explain myself. I think I did. So I think I am done here. Everything else is fluff at this point, unless I really want to hunker down, do all the research, write a whole book about it or something, but even then it's just going to be an opinion and you will probobly ignore it, so what is the point?
  5. I think I am going to stay out of the discussion from now on, but let me respond to a few things first. @lonequeso Yeah I know several games have done lots of things I have suggested. I do wonder how common it really is to do things that way. @AnarelHaeran I have played Final Fantasy 6 and 7 a bunch actually (8 not as much, but I don't think it does that much differently), and they did do a lot of good things in terms of 'quest' design I am not going to argue with that. In lots of ways Final Fantasy 6 and 7, as well as Chrono Trigger and a few other games I could think of, are absolutely brilliant examples of how good quests work. In other ways though, they also kinda indirectly prove my point. Because in Final Fantasy 6 and Chrono Trigger, you don't actually do many things that resemble traditional 'quests' until the vast majority of the game is over, and other then that the games tend to have side areas and events sprinkled around every once and while rather then 'quests' in the same way we are talking about. The example with Final Fantasy 6's Shadow feels much more to me like secret events then a quest for example, most of the side things you do in Final Fantasy 7 come in the form of extra areas to explore, and maybe to you there isn't a huge difference between them, but they feel different to me. Besides, with games like those you have games that are for the most part linear and focused completely on the main story outside of maybe a side area every once and a while, and when you finally get an airship or something and have free reign to explore it's usually only at the point where most of the main plot has already been wrapped up and you can just go right for the ending if you really want to, or go around and tie up loose ends and get more of the little details behind things. But if we are talking about open world games where 'quests' are the primary way of telling stories rather then a way of wrapping up loose ends, it's then that I think the weakness of quests really start to grate. And do keep in mind, I am not saying a game that uses quests this way is always bad, I am just saying it's something I don't tend to enjoy, even in games I otherwise like. And there are plenty of examples of games that use quests that way that I like, though most of the examples I can think of are relatively obscure or borderline. But heck, one of my favorite series is the SaGa series which is almost completely based on quests and side events, and I am fond of the Ultima games where going around and talking to NPCs to learn what to do is a huge focus. There are some of the Etrian Odyssey games that I really enjoy, some roguelikes with quest systems like Elona and Pokemon/Etrian Mystery Dungeon. But I am not a fan of these games because of the quests, I am a fan because I like the gameplay. I don't mind elements of story and context in my games, I just don't agree that 'quests' are usually a very good way of doing it. Maybe that's petty and picky of me but I, for example, Never got into Skyrim or any of the Elder Scrolls games past Daggerfall, and to be honest I didn't even find Daggerfall or Arena very playable. And yes Skyrim is one of the few modernish games I have actually played, and it just didn't hold my interest (also once again had more then a few technical problems with it). Now Skyrim is probobly an old game by this point and probobly a bad example, but it's still a rather good window into my kind of disconnect with the modern RPG. Maybe I have not given games like The Witcher series or the Dragon Age series or whatever a fair shake, but they don't grab my interest in the same way Final Fantasy 6 or 7 did. And maybe this could be spun off into a discussion of open world vs. linear design, but I don't think that's really too relevant. I really do think it's the quest-based structure of how open world RPGs work rather then the fact that they are open world that rubs me the wrong way. In the end though, that's my final argument, accept it or not. I have blabbed into I am blue in the face and I am probobly not convincing anyone. So be it.
  6. @lonequeso Geez, it's not like I am saying every popular game is universally bad or anything. There are problems I see with the industry sure, there are flaws I hear about in many popular games sure, there are few people who would deny that are a few stupid (or more likely lazy) consumers out there who are just completely uninformed buying stuff because of the ads flying in their face all the time. and I am a rather contrary person who complains a lot about all this, but in the end I like the games I like and you like the games you like. I am not accusing you of being a mindless drone who only buys popular stuff because it's popular. It's just that I personally don't really care about popular trends and that x popular game that did y got z sales. It's kind of irrelevant, because unless there is a super big shot game industry person here I don't know about, we aren't part of any of that. Not really. We, most of us, are armatures, independents, hobbyists. People with the ability to frankly discuss things and experiment. People who are in the exact position to play around. You know, honestly, what's the point of even discussing my opinions if you just going to assume I am being a crazy person out of hand? Should I just stop? Do I do this too much? Do I really go too far? Is it really that outrageous to think things aren't perfect and wanting to talk about my thoughts about things? Is it really that crazy to think that maybe someone might care about what I want to say? Also: The Theory of Relativity is wrong because it formulates time as a dimension when it's obviously an iterative process or something. The very idea of anything being able to subjectively experience a 'now' is proof enough there is more to it then that. Though technically 'time' in terms of The Theory of Relativity is just 'the rates at which clocks tick' so the math still works out. But the whole idea of time travel is completely ridiculous. Also the whole quantum thing, but we are talking about crack science here! @Tarq I donno if I ever really properly gave a real alternative for quests in general, just a whole bunch of scatter shot ideas about how things could work. Most of them with a lot of crazy scripting, yeah they are not gonna be practical for most people probobly. But I don't think it's too crazy to at least just have the lost dog in the woods and let you find it with a collar with it's owners name on it without having to go talk to the owner first. No reason you can't talk to the owner and/or see lost dog posters to learn more and ask around to see where it might be. Is that fundamentally any different then a quest? Maybe not. But it's a different way of thinking about it. It's the mindset that is the important thing. To sit and think 'how can I make this seem less like a task and more like a part of the game or world'. Maybe something similar to a quest journal, only it records notes about things you have learned instead of quests? Maybe have little puzzle shrines to find to get optional stuff like in breath of the wild instead of making them quest rewards. I donno. I just pointed out the common problem as I saw it, good solutions are trickier. On the subject of research, I am also too poor, and without the right hardware. Dark Souls is one of the few relatively modern games I do own, though I haven't got far in it because of technical reasons. Lazyness isn't a non issue, but my primary problem is just the investment I would need to make to play most of today's popular games. That said, this isn't a research paper. If it was I would never have posted anything at all. This is a opinion from what I have seen and experienced and based on my subjective feelings.
  7. Okay how about these items: Blood - Recover HP Yellow Bile - Attack Up Black Bile - Defense Up Phlegm - Recover MP ... What? You said it was a humor-based game right? Edit: On second thought maybe make them one time use stat powerup items?
  8. You might as well say that about all possible flaws about anything anyone can come up with, which would make discussion threads kind of pointless. If I don't like something and can articulate exactly why I don't like something and what I don't like about, it is still I feel an opinion worth sharing for anyone seriously thinking about this stuff. That this is all opinion should go without saying, and I think I have presented what I think is a reasonable case for why I feel that way. And I will acknowledge you have to, more or less. Or at least made some interesting counterpoints. I just don't happen to agree with you. The opposite is also true, just because you like something doesn't mean it isn't flawed. You say you I have an incredibly narrow-minded idea of what a quest is, and partly I do by design. Because I am trying to laser focus exactly on what I don't like and the kind of terminology and way of thinking it entails. You on the other hand are trying to stretch the idea to include all sorts of things that, 'by the literal definition' as you said before, are different things. This isn't the first time you have done that I think. I try and make my terms as clear and exact as I can, explaining what I do and do not count as something, and you talk in vaguer terms, then we squabble over semantics until we both get sick of it. I could accuse you just as easily as having an incredibly narrow-minded idea about some things. Your typical response is 'such and such was this way in popular game x', most of your examples being games I haven't played and have zero interest in playing because frankly most of what I see about them indicates exactly the kind of problems I am pointing out. But okay, I can buy that I might be an old narrow-minded ultra-hipster bitch from hell. It's also possible that you are overlooking flaws in popular games. I have no idea, and I am to lazy and poor to go out and buy and play all these new games that you like but I have heard lots of negative things about elsewhere. And yeah maybe there is too much negativity when it comes to gaming that I have seen over the net. I only know what I have observed. Unless your point is that I have an incredibly narrow-minded idea of what a designer might use quests for as a tool? I do think some design tools have more utility in some ways then others, but my point is not and has never been 'bah, everyone who has quests in their games are dumb'. My point is 'here is a tool that lots of people use, but I feel other tools would work better to accomplish similar ends in many cases'. But again, like in the minigame thread, anyone making a game with quests, I am not the boss of you. I am just a person that is expressing an opinion on the internet. Anyway, this isn't about winning or being right. I have just been sharing my observations and feelings about a element of game design, and responding to comments about it to hopeful explain them better. If it is making you upset that the grand high bitch queen of the fairies is daring to question a element of game design, well, that's kind of what I try to do here. If I am condescending and smug about it I am sorry. All I really want to do here is encourage people to think about it a little more carefully.
  9. @lonequeso I just think it's an incredibly misguided way of thinking about gameplay goals to look at them through the lens of 'quests' in the first place. When you start doing that, you start organizing everything in that lens. And that way of thinking is to me the problem that every other problem stems from. The bells and whistles or the various convenience features don't matter. At best they smooth over some of the most glaring issues a bit, but they don't solve the underlining problem. And that problem is that anytime a game arbitrarily sets an obstruction in the player's path that has no real mechanical gameplay reason to be there, it is disrespecting the player and devaluing the game's mechanics. And I guess that can be iffy and subjective, but it's still why I rather try coming up with alternative ways of thinking about it rather then broadening my idea of what a quest can be. Because I don't want to be caught in that trap. Also: I might play more new games if I could afford them and had a system that could run them. Maybe I will get a switch for Yule and try Breath of the Wild at least, that looks like a fairly relevant one. From what I have seen of it so far though, it's a tad disappointing how much it falls into questy traps, but I have to admit it looks fun enough and free roaming enough that it shouldn't be that much of a problem. @AnarelHaeran I personally don't think it really counts as a quest unless the game outright tells you 'hey go do this thing'. Also personally don't think it counts if it's an obvious gameplay goal that is naturally something the player does through play. A hidden cryptic thing hinted at by an NPC might be a quest, but it might also be better qualified as a secret or easter egg. On the other hand, there are plenty of games where you are given 'quests' even if they are never formally recognized as such. I remember the days where the whole 'quest journal' system hadn't taken off yet and you had to remember everything yourself. And sometimes, like in a lot of adventure games, the line between 'quest' and 'puzzle' could be pretty thin. Achievements are debatable and depends on how they work, but honestly I am gonna have to partly reverse a previous stance and say Minecraft's achievements at least actually are basically a kind of quest. I have always been kind of annoyed at how achievements in Minecraft work, and in retrospect I can see why: Because they are annoying in exactly the same way quests often are. Because unlike most games, achievements in Minecraft are organized in a tree-like progression where each one you get shows you a few more you can do, and instead of the information being recorded on the player's account, it's recorded per-world. It's kinda sneaky like that. I mean I get the whole point of them is to act as a sort of tutorial of sorts (though they aren't a very good one), but I spend half the time barely progressing because I did the first few things in the wrong order and never feel motivated to do them because they are only for whatever world I am playing on anyway. Luckily they also offer no reward that I know of, so I can just ignore them all I want. On the other hand, I tend to kinda like achievement systems where the goals are at least party hidden. You can look up a list and try and get them all of course, but I think it's more fun to get a little thing unexpected for doing something if you have no idea it's going to happen. Hmmm... You know, that reminds me of that 'exploration bonus' feature of Dues Ex (the original at least). It's nice to find a game where doing something meaningful rewards you just for doing it even if you were never told about it.
  10. Only kind of grinding I find fun is the kind that involves genitalia.
  11. Geez buddy, what did fairies do to you? It's also a really horrible idea for a power source. If you wanted to use a fairy as a power source it's much better to keep them alive, attach special mana draining clamps on their wings, and set up a way to stimulate them so they release magic on the push of a button. It's so much less messy, you get more out of it long term, and you won't likely immediately have a fairy looking to grind you up slowly into meat pies while you are still being kept alive by magic as soon as they get a new body. A immortal with a grudge isn't a pleasant thing you know. When two immortals are involved there are reasons to avoid escalation least it ends up a huge endless cycle of violence that isn't fun for anyone (okay, isn't fun for most people), but with a mortal? We only have to win once.
  12. You need them to complete the game. The story part is already written for you. You don't need to complete it. But seriously, the story in Metroid it was hardly there. Hell, it was hardly there at all in any of the Metroid games up till Fusion (or Super Metorid maybe, but you still spent the vast majority of time without a peep of it in that game). There are no NPCs yammering on and telling you to do this or that, or big dramatic setpiece cutscenes (the addition of them is one of the reasons most Metroid fans hated Fusion and don't even get me started about what people feel about Other M). Not that the series didn't have some interesting setting building and lore, but it's a series primarily about finding secrets and experimenting with items. If you are saying these qualify as 'quests' just because you happen to need to do it to win, welp, I guess Chess has quests now! Look it's an allegory for war that totally counts as a 'story' for you to 'complete' right? And all I am saying is, no. They don't. At all. Or at the very least that there needs to be some fundamental dividing line between any gameplay with a win condition and how games use 'quests'. Or 'missions' or whatever. And okay, look. I get it. The word 'quest' is supposed to indicate some grad adventure, something you can put passion behind, go out and have fun with. There is a reason I keep putting 'quest' in little air quotes. But for whatever the romantic idea of questing might be, that's not what I at least am getting out of RPGs most of the time. ... How the hell are we still ranting at each other about this crap anyway?
  13. Eh, I think there is a difference between attaching a story to a bit of gameplay and attaching gameplay to a bit of story. I guess that's the thing. Saving the princess in Mario is the goal in the story used to provide context to the game that you play. But that's not how 'quests' tend to work in rpgs. Instead you are being told a story and are expected to do something to turn the next page, and I find that really annoying from ether perspective. Also in no way is getting items in metroid really that relevant to the story at all.
  14. Huh, I thought for sure it was more involved then that. I thought it was more how Dwarf Fortress works in that all the characters have their own sort of thing and you just kind of push them in the direction you want to go. You might as well say Super Mario Bros. has 'quests' placed seamlessly into the gameplay if you are going to say that. It has goals and objectives, obstructions placed in the way, even little mushroom men who tell you to go to another castle, and you eventually rescue a princess. But just having all that doesn't make things a 'quest' in the sense that we have been talking about. But okay, maybe you would say the difference between 'quest' and 'level' could be debated in some way. What about Metroid? Are you going to say that every time you find a thing you need an item to get by it's the same as a 'quest' in an RPG? That seems kinda silly to me. And what about when you see a nice structure in Minecraft and want to make a fortress out of it? How about in a strategy game where your enemy gets some new resource, do you mean to tell me it's a 'quest' to destroy or capture it? I say no. A 'quest' is an arbitrary task the game gives you to keep you busy. A 'quest' is when an NPC tells you 'go kill 50 monsters and I will give you my stick' or something, a distraction with a promise of a reward, not actual game goals that emerge organically. There is no game reason to be the task, it's just a random chore that has nothing to do with the game's mechanics. If you have to kill 50 monsters to get the gold they drop to buy the sword? That's gameplay (not necessarily very good gameplay, but gameplay). There are mechanical reasons for doing what you are doing. There are ways around it, maybe you can just sell old crap. Heck I will even accept trading x number of rat tails form a particular monster for something in a trading system or using them to craft something in a crafting as better then a quest. It's still kind of a waste of time and too questy for me, but if it has an actual trading or crafting system for stuff it becomes at least three or four times as interesting. Even a simple system is better then an arbitrary task. Maybe to you it doesn't make a difference, but if I want goals I want them to be something I decide based on the systems I have to work with, not something the game's creator just told me to do to keep me busy.
  15. Isn't that kinda what the Sims does? Less characters but isn't it the same basic idea? I donno, I never played any of the Sims games myself, I just heard lots about them. But I don't think you are getting it. My whole point is that such a system would replace quests, not that it should be used to complement them. What is the point of a quest telling you to do something when you already have a gameplay reason to do it? Let's take a common setup for an RPG. If some group of bandit NPCs is bothering a town, you don't need to make a 'quest available' to get rid of them, you do it if there are gameplay consequences and rewards already set up for dealing with the bandits. You don't even necessarily need to do it personally, just manipulate the situation so they are taken care of. Maybe by getting a third party involved. But if you do that you personally get less reward and glory. Or maybe the bandits have a powerful backer and it's best to leave them alone even if they are disruptive? Maybe the bandits want something and they will go away if they get it? Yeah, you could do exactly what I said through branching 'quest chains', but you would have to write out every possibility, still constrain the player to a few choices. What if instead you make the whole thing more systematic and less 'questy', made the pieces on the board (either whole factions or even individual NPCs) have their own internal goals and programing? It becomes a far more interesting. Suddenly we have choice and consequence, real gameplay instead of a fake 'quest' some NPC gives you. You have mechanics you can play with. What is the point of quests under such a system? That's a theoretical over the top example of course. We don't need to go that far. We don't need to have every piece on the board be moved by some unseen complex system. But compare most RPGs to most any other game genre. In most platformers, shooters, and other action games they have simple physics based interactions the player is always dealing with. The challenge and the fun comes from interacting with the environment and objects in it using physics-based rules. In puzzle and adventure games you have abstract puzzle challenges. Though some adventure games are notorious for having inane moon logic puzzles, the idea is that you are supposed to work out what to do through deductive reasoning with a set of logical rules. In most strategy and tactical games there are a set of tactical or political decisions to be made, weighing the choice of every outcome with a set of tactical rules. The fun and challenge there is in coming up with and executing a long term strategy while at the same time dealing with the unexpected moves of your opponents. So what do RPGs do? Well they can do any of those things really. Action RPGs at least can be physical, RPGs can have lots of puzzles, RPGs can do tactics and strategy. But for the most part most of RPG gameplay is focused on combat and dungeon crawling, leaving a big void over most everything else. It's filler pure and simple. Oh I am not talking about the story really. Story is it's own can of worms, but it has it's place. But NPC interaction? In most RPGs is a lackluster lifeless thing. There is nothing interesting gameplay wise about most RPG NPCs. Quests don't help. Quests are just a cheap way to give NPCs some use by making dealing with them a required part of the game, and only really serve to push the player into playing with other things. I am just saying, if you want your NPCs and your world to be a fun interesting place, give them an interesting function in the gameplay, don't resort to have them rattling off ideas of things you could do. Funny thing is, this only really applies to video games. In Tabletop RPGs NPCs were all sorts of important to the gameplay. When was the last time you saw a video game where Bards had their hella useful D&D 'bluff' ability and could use it well for example? This is the weakness of not having a real person play an NPC I know, but it isn't completely impossible to at least overcome. It's just that most video game RPGs don't try and turn their NPCs into either glorified vending machines, exposition dumps, or quest dispensers.