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RPG Battle System

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This may have be brought up before, but... I hate to generalize, but RPG battle systems tend to fall into two categories. "Hack ''n Slash" as in Diablo (run up to enemy, click mouse button wildly, run away, heal, run back, etc), and "turn based" as in Final Fantasy series (I hit the monster, the monster hits me, I hit the monster, the monster hits me...). I think the battle systems are wearing a little thin. Don''t get me wrong, I still enjoy playing them, but I would like to see something requiring a little more "skill". I would like to see a cross between an RPG and a fighting game (esp. Tekken). For example, you are walking around the map, visible from an overhead isometric view. When you are attacked..it zooms in to a 3D-side view as in Tekken. While fighting you would have full 3D mobility; jump, side-step, move forward and backward, etc. Your attacks would utilize whatever weapon you are equiped with. The monsters attack would utilize whatever they were equiped with (ie an eight tentacled monster would hit with its tentacles, an orc-type monster would use a club or sword). Magic could be used through programmable keys: press the number 1 for fire 2 ice 3 lightning 4 silence, etc. Of course, the enemy would be able to dodge a magical attack as well. A game like this may already exist, and I may have just wasted everyones time, if so, I am sorry, and would be very interested to know the name of the game. If not, what do you think about my idea? BTW: I have come across an old SNES game called "Super Dragon Boy" or somethign like that, the does combine, and RPG and a fighting game, but the fighting engine is primitive. Jason

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I like your idea for a combat that requires skill - kind of like might and magic:crusaders.
However - i hate point and click magic - that should require some skill too - i love the gesture system from black & white
my fav. game would be a multiplayer (coop) m&m:crusaders (ie, fps all the time), with magic performed using gestures (and while i''m dreaming, random maps ala nethack/diablo)

- Wyzfen

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Hey,
The old RPG Tales of Detiny had an action-based battle system that was pretty good, although they could have done better.
Secret of Mana was a bit more than hack-n-slash, as well.
Can''t think of any that use 3D that you speak of... but ah well... there''s always Daggerfall ;-)

--Brian

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I agree that battle systems are very often ignored in RPG, but I don''t know if a real time tekken type interface is a great solution. It might work for one or two characters, but if you''re controlling more than that it would probably get too complex. I was thinking of a turn based version of what you suggest.

You could have a simple 3D fighting area to move around in, something like the battles in Heroes of Might and Magic. Some things you could do:

- The direction of the attack matters. If you attack a unit''s back then it''s less likely to block. This could add some interesting flanking tactics, and you could get advantages from having multiple units ganging up against a single unit. Of course it wouldn''t affect some units, like a hydra or something else that can attack/defend in different directions.
- You could simulate morale in battle. If you charge one of your units ahead to attack the enemy and it quickly becomes surrounded and separated from its friends it might panic.
- Area effect spells - you have to be careful not to hurt your own units
- Line of sight - your archers/magic users might hit another unit if it''s in the way
etc.

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You should check out the old SNES game Chrono Trigger for a variant on turn based battles that is similar to what you described. Also the new PC game Anachronox which takes the Chrono Trigger battle system to the next level with a grid-based movement system during fighting.

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Hey StratMan...... Haven''t seen you in awhile I used to come to this forum all the time, but lately I''ve just been a lurker. I like the Anox forums, but they are too lethargic... I hope we get some faster forums soon.

To NCPar8hd, you should definately try Tales of Destiny. just think of it as a Street Fighter brawl with RPG elements. I can''t wait for Tales of Destiny 2.

I don''t think RPG''s need to involve any twitch skill as long as they involve substantial strategy. Tactical RPG''s like Tactics Ogre, Final Fantasy Tactics, or nearly any game by SSI add a lot of strategy by allowing the characters to move. Technically, fighters wouldn''t need to move for a battle system to involve enough strategy, but I just haven''t seen any system pull that off, yet. Don''t get me wrong, I like a lot of the classic Final Fantasies, but I really wish their battle systems would be deeper.

-Forcas


"Elvis is alive. He is Barney the purple dinosaur. He is the pied piper that leads our children into the wages of sin and eternal damnation."



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The battle system from the secret of mana series was well done! The games would have been better if the characters weren''t completely predefined, but the magic system was well done I think

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Why not use a gesture system for warrior combat too? One gesture for a stabbing attack, another for a high sweep, another for a defensive move etc. This could be fun if you implement it right, and could lead to some interesting combos. Just dont take the Die By The Sword route, that gave you too much control over the sword but it never felt natural.

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Noone mentionned Grandia2 which has IMO the best combat system I''ve ever seen.
A little work over it might make it perfect

-* So many things to do, so little time to spend. *-

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A few people mentioned gesture-based activation of skills. Ironically enough the prototype for Final Fantasy 7 that Square made on Silicon Graphics computers used the mouse to activate various commands. Obviously this never made it over to FF7 on the Playstation, but it could have been the killer app for mice on consoles.

As for other RPGs/cRPGs, Silver used mouse gestures for the different movements and sword attacks. A bit cumbersome with all the action going on, but interesting.

Back on topic of hybrid click-''n-kill/turn-based RPGs I think Sierra''s Quest for Glory 5 comes close. A spell won''t hit anything unless you aim and you have to actually move the character to dodge. Spells, potions, etc. can be hotkeyed to speed things up.

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