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Where would i place the enemys?

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Ok, i am currently working on a tile-based RPG. With areas like towns, forests, enemy camps, etc... Now, a RPG without enemys isnt a RPG. So my question is: how would i make the enemys attack u (it has to be that u encounter a enemy then it switches to turn-based combat). So, should i make them visible and moving or random positions on the map and make them invisible so that u can run into 1 every time (in forest no so often, in enemy camps nearly all the time)

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I've always hated the "minefield" system of enemy placement, where every step might be a random, time-consuming encounter, or it could not be. If you're trying to get someplace, then it's a huge hassle to have to kill 50 gremlins along the road. If you're trying to grind XP, then you've got to run 50 miles to attract enough encounters.

I would like a system where I can exert some influence over the frequency and magnitude of my encounters. Zelda II did pretty well in this regard, actually, by letting us avoid encounters by sticking to the road and farm encounters by wandering in the gloomy swamp, and then spawning groups of enemies and letting us choose to engage one or to try to evade all of them.

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I agree with Iron Chef Carnage, it's a lot better when the player has a chance to choose whether they want to battle a lot or not. The whole concept of "this is enemy territory, you'll fight whether you want to or not" is almost always just frustration in the end.

Having alternative routes, like Iron Chef Carnage suggested, or some other means like usable items (think repellents from pokémon, for example) or maybe a setting with three options:
1/ Looking for a fight (encounter a lot of enemies every other step)
2/ Normal (random encounter)
3/ Avoid fights (greatly reduced encounter-rates)

It will all come down to what fits in your game, ofcourse =)

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why should there be enemies all over the place? What should govern their placement? Ask yourself questions about it and do what makes sense. enemies randomly placed usually makes no sense, some games dont even explain why they are there or offer a pitiful excuse. Figure out why they are there and where they should be. What motivates them?

A good game will allow different play styles to be successful, this means the ability to sneak around enemies, go fight people, etc. If you build the game for one play style, only one kind of player will like your game, if you allow the game to be playable in a wide variety of ways and provide challenges for all play styles, your game will appeal to a wide variety of people.

Id recommend playing the demos (and then buying the full versions!) of the Geneforge series. Jeff Vogel, the creator, did a great job of allowing players to sneak past enemies, or go fight them, and allowed for different play styles within that as well. It is well known that the series can be played through with virtually no fighting necessary, yet is can be fighting oriented if you play that way. It is also well balanced on the whole between the different fighting methods. His philosophy in creating his games tends to be about not locking the player into anything, play style, plot paths, methods of solving problems and meeting challenges, he provides options that are all fun and playable.

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Quote:
Now, a RPG without enemys isnt a RPG

I completely disagree with this. Enemies do not make an RPG. An RPG is a ROLE playing game. That is the game emphasis must be on role playing (yes, other games can have you acting in a role, but the main emphasis of the game is not about playing a role).

You could have a role playing game where all you did was solve puzzles and talk to people with no enemies in sight. It would still be a role playing game, but there would be no combat at all. Combat with enemies does not make a game a roleplaying game.

Quote:
So my question is: how would i make the enemys attack u (it has to be that u encounter a enemy then it switches to turn-based combat). So, should i make them visible and moving or random positions on the map and make them invisible so that u can run into 1 every time (in forest no so often, in enemy camps nearly all the time)

If you want to give the player the ability to play a role, then you have to give the play the ability to make choices for their character(s). By making enemy encounters unavoidable, you remove that choice from the player.

What if they wanted to play a character that was a pacifist? That is a perfectly acceptable trait that a player can have for their character. If they can't avoid fights, how can they play a pacifist?

Maybe they want to play a character that is a coward. How can they play a character that doesn't want to fight if they can't escape fighting?

By removing the ability for a player to make these choices about their character, you remove the ability of the player to Role Play their character the way they want and make them play the character the way you want. The focus of the game is no longer about playing a role, but instead about killing enemies. It has stopped being a role playing game and become a beat-em-up.

So, give them the ability to choose to engage in combat, chose to avoid it, or even attempt to sneak around the enemies (by avoiding combat with the enemies while wandering around the enemies lands). To do this, the player has to be able to see the enemy and be able to avoid having to enter combat unless they choose to do so (or the enemy can out flank them as they move around).

This also means that the enemies have to be placed with some purpose, not just randomly placed around the maps.

If there is a concentration of enemies, then there must be something that they are guarding, or some reason that they are congregating there.

Give thought to where you place the enemies. For each one you place, give yourself a valid reason that that enemy is at that location (it doesn't matter if the player ever finds out that reason, but it has to be there).

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Well, in my previous RPG i let them go to the arena for grinding and in the forest for hunting. Is this a good choice? Otherwise maybe visible enemys where if u run into them then u will change to Turn-Based combat.

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Original post by JasRonq
why should there be enemies all over the place? What should govern their placement? Ask yourself questions about it and do what makes sense. enemies randomly placed usually makes no sense, some games dont even explain why they are there or offer a pitiful excuse. Figure out why they are there and where they should be. What motivates them?

I always thought the Final Fantasy games were horrible in this respect.

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Original post by manhaeve
Well, in my previous RPG i let them go to the arena for grinding and in the forest for hunting. Is this a good choice? Otherwise maybe visible enemys where if u run into them then u will change to Turn-Based combat.


not really. you dont put the mobs there to grind on, you put them there because they have a reason IN THE GAMES PLOT OR WORLD to be there. You need to look at everything internally, from the view point of the player and what makes sense within the world, not externally and by what makes sense game design wise.

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I thought Xenosaga got it right. Keep the enemies "visible", they will patrol small area, they can be avoided if you walk into them you get a "back attack" and if vice versa, for the most part they dont respawn.

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Original post by Aiursrage
I thought Xenosaga got it right. Keep the enemies "visible", they will patrol small area, they can be avoided if you walk into them you get a "back attack" and if vice versa, for the most part they dont respawn.
I was thinking Lufia (II), even though Lufia II's actual battle system is garbage. The enemies are right there, and you can avoid them if you like. You can even shoot most of them with an arrow to stun them while you pass by.

It's a shame the battle was as it was, though. An enemy blob could simply summon another blob, and then that blob would have its turn, and lo and behold, it would just summon another blob. There was also no way to defend or otherwise affect an enemy's turn, so you would often watch helplessly as all your characters fell to slaughter by a team of blobs.

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I also prefer being able to see enemies on the screen. It seems ideal in that you can try to avoid them by being sneaky, if you're not sneaking well enough then they run at you, you can still try and run, or just fight it out. Reward the player for sneaking in that he doesn't spend time or health and encouraged fights by letting them know they will build up the ability to avoid those enemies later when they're no longer fun to encounter. You have a little bit of a grind creating a bit of the desired challenge in battles and a mechanism to let the players choose their battles (or at least you give them the illusion that they can).

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