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Structure Of An RPG

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-->What is the template to designing an RPG, I''ve thought about this for so long, Should the story be written out first then the design of the game step by step? Or is there a different approach to how a good RPG is designed? Anyone with experience care to help?

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As a designer myself, I just start where I feel the most inspired to start at. Keeping in mind that before I'm through that changes will be made, if not complete revision of the documents. Personally, I started writeing the storyline of my flagship game first, but let me honestly say that I just decided about 2 weeks ago to scrap the old document and write a new one. Don't get me wrong, I have no regrets of writeing the storyline first, and if given the choice I'd do it again. It was a great learning experience and the new storyline will improve greatly. (keep in mind that the plot for both storyline documents are the same, it's just minor things and how I structured the storyline before that was issueable)

I do, however, recommend that you plan out some things first. Like who all your main characters are going to be... Make a world map, and position all the important locations. (that way you can have a physical visual of your story.) Create all the components such as magic, skills, main villians, and so forth.

It's a lot of work, and most of the skills are gained through trial and error. I'm also sure there are more experienced people out there, I'll be watching this thread as it never hurts to learn more.

Hope I helped some,

Alex Ford
PointSoft EA
http://www.pointsoftonline.com

[edited by - PointSoft on May 29, 2002 12:55:03 PM]

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If you''re willing to invest some time and money, buy PrimaTech''s "Swords and Circuity". I''ve play-studied RPGs for almost four years and this book covered more than I learned in the space of two weeks.

-Solstice

deninet.com
aeris.deninet.com

"...I was given three choices, the earth, the stars, or..."

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I think it really depends upon the "type" of RPG you''re making. In the case of a FF type of game, I think that the storyline is prevalent, everything else secondary. It helps determine the way the game will look and play, so it''s important to get most of the core of the storyline down before moving forward with the game design.

With games such as Morrowind and the upcoming Neverwinter Nights, since they''re more open-ended than the FF games, I think the goal was to create a way to make them open-ended first, and then to worry about the storyline later. Especially with the editor MW ships with, it''s important to keep the world itself open-ended (since you can add new buildings, and even towns if you want to), so the main storyline will be built and conceived with the tools created AFTER the main gameplay environment is handled. (Mind you, I''m sure they had a loose idea of the storyline beforehand, but it wasn''t as crucial to making the game as it is in the FF games)

Every other RPG I can think of (M&M, Ultima, BG) undoubtedly falls somewhere between these two extremes.

-Chris

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-->Thanks a lot you guys, you pretty much answered my question perfectly, different prespectives with all valid points, I think I''ll get to that World map soon, since I already have characters already.

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