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the last character

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Fairly straight forward post this time. I'm playing around with a story, which i originally intended to be a one character game. I think it would be much more enjoyable now as a party driven style rpg, and have begun incorporating other playable characters. problem being, i began to think about party driven systems as a whole. you are always faced with obtaining characters one at a time, the last few not even until the game is nearly at an end. When you finally do get these characters, you don't have to "raise" them (use them in battle to obtain their basic moves) and they are usually insanely powerful so you look at them as an asset, and reward, rather than hindrance. It bugs me when my new character has better stats than me. and cooler attacks. and weak ones that he would have gotten at the beginning of the game at level 5 and i will never use them. is there solution to the this problem, or others involved with adding characters at late stages of the game? thanks, ~Chokki

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... you could just not add characters at the end...

but I guess that's just a way around it. One suggestion is to introduce the characters sooner, and have them semi-playable so that they can start to be developed, so when you get them in the end you kind of know what to expect.

Other than that, I don't know if there's much else you can do.


Mushu - trying to help those he doesn't know, with things he doesn't know.
Why won't he just go away? An question the universe may never have an answer to...

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partially playable characters. there is merit in that idea, it is one thing i was considering. It would be preferable to just plopping a veritable hercules in the game when there's only 20% of the game left to go..

are there any examples of games that use this partial-play system, where you switch in with a character but don't actually get him permanently in your party until a later point?

One that comes to mind is chrono trigger, but magus is the last character, and you can beat the game by then if you want..

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You really find that characters found at the end of the game are insanely powerful? I usually find that characters who havent been with me from the beginning are weak, uninteresting, or just bizzarre... It may just be me but I get really attached to the earlier characters and neglect ones that come further on.

I remember in FF6, you can get characters like Relm, Strago, Mog, Umaro, and Gogo towards the end... but i mean SNORE. They're not that special, useful, or all that powerful. Sure they can be interesting, but they're nothing to write home about. Likewise, in Tales of Symphonia the later characters are Presea and Regal, who are pretty generic, don't add much to my team. I find that I put them in my party simply for a change of pace. Of course, one of your really early characters is pretty useless herself as well...

You mentioned this Partial-Play character, and it happens pretty often. FFX had Rikku, who you met early on, fought with, but then left only to meet up with later. FF6 (god, is ff all i know?) did the same thing with Shadow, who kept joining and leaving your party a lot.

I guess what I'm saying is that if character development is entirely up to you, you can balance it in such a way that it pleases you! Make late joining characters like one level lower than your main characters, and leave it up to the user to power them up if they like. Or introduce them all before your halfway point in the game, and build their relationships and characters up really well in the second half. The sky's the limit!

Hope my humble opinions helped,
As ever,
****Cosmic****

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The early Might and Magic games (I to V) allowed you to change the members of your party at taverns. Towns that were reached later in the game had more powerful characters, but how they compared to those already in your party depended on how you had played up until that point.

Headquarters played a similar role in the Shining Force games.

This allowed you to advance all your characters to a similar level, concentrate on your favourites and/or choose different characters for specific tasks.

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Personally, not having a full party at the start of the game is one of the downsides to console style RPGs. I'd much rather generate all my characters myself at the start thankyouverymuch. [see Bard's Tale, and all its progeny. And yes, I played all of the Infinity engine games as 'multiplayer' by myself]

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i'm not understanding the problem.
if you gain a party members near the end of the game, i would that he got all of his basic skills and magics obtained and be on par with your party. granted not an uber-god warrior but able to hold his own.

so do you want to be building a level 1 character near the end of the game? or you don't want party members you acquire at the end of the game to be (far) more powerful than you?

what i hate is bosses that you fight that are insanely wicked and powerful then when you get them in your party they're suddenly wimps or pansies! what the hell is up with that?!

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Quote:
Original post by Alpha_ProgDes
what i hate is bosses that you fight that are insanely wicked and powerful then when you get them in your party they're suddenly wimps or pansies! what the hell is up with that?!


You can almost always deal way more damage than you can take. They have to be throttled back or else they'll overpower EVERYTHING.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
You can make the new character's level based on the party's average level. Change it acordingly with the story, so if your new character is supposed to be better than anyone of your team, make it 1 or more levels above the average, if he is supposed to be weaker, the opposite.

About the cooler attacks, it's just a matter of making your new player attacks as cool as the ones your other characters have. If your main character is supposed to get a cool attack at level 30, make your new character get an attack more or less as cool as that one in level 31 or 32.

Attacks that you have an never use should never exist, unless you can delete your attacks to get space for the new ones(but if that is the case, you have to make the player choose between just attacks that he will never use!).

Pretty much the only problem I ever had with characters at a late point is that I was already used to my old characters, and when I have to leave an old comrade out of the party because of the new guy, I would rather keep it the way it is, since I'm not having troubles with my current party, so the new character needs to at least give me an advantage that no one else can give to me in that point.

For example if I don't have a healer in my old team(and asumming my new character is good at healing), and I'm going to find the undead, that on top of having low HP and low defence can be weak again healing, and can cause status effects, including the healer in the party is something even a fool would do.

Or if I'm constantly fighting a enemies that fly and my new character is good at comboing in the air but bad with small or digging enemies, I would include him in my party for as long as I'm in the flying enemies territory, but when fighting small enemies I would get him out.

Oh also, a little out of context and not really directed specifically at the topic creator, it would be advisable to check for things like missing words, capital letters at the beginning of sentences and stuff before posting... I'm not perfect myself but I try to improve =D

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Quote:
Original post by Chokki


is there solution to the this problem, or others involved with adding characters at late stages of the game?

thanks,
~Chokki


I apologize if this sounds rude, but have you considered leaving the Final Fantasy mold when it comes to party-based RPGs? The quickest and simplest answer to your question would, of course, be "Don't add characters during the late stages of the game."

However, if you're deadset on that sort of design, I'd suggest a possible pro/con system for all your mid-to-late game party additions:
Make them strong in one area, but very weak in another. So that yes, that last character you get might be a TANK when it comes to dealing with nonmagical opponents, but is highly susceptible to magical attacks of any sort.

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