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shaz

Making battles interesting rather than annoying

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So, someone said in my DAU thread that they didn't want to have to fight monsters on returning to a very early area, when the monsters are so easy, but the battle takes so long because you've got to set up moves for all your characters when the first one is going to take the monster out.

 

The bees in Aveyond were mentioned, but I keep thinking back to that spider on the bridge on the eastern isle.

 

 

So I have two questions:

 

1. At what point do battles become annoying? Is it based on your atk vs the monster's hp, or how many levels you've gained (and how much stronger you are) than when you first encountered them, or that the loot and exp they give are virtually useless (and define virtually useless)?

 

2. What could be done to make it more interesting - so that you don't avoid them, and maybe even look for fights? Some suggestions are just removing them so you don't have to deal with them after a certain point, make the monsters get stronger as you get stronger, replace the weak monsters with new, stronger monsters that give more loot and exp? Maybe switch from turn based to atb so you don't even have to go into a battle screen?

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1) For me it becomes annoying, when my level is so much higher than the monsters. And couple that with the low loot/exp you get. It just makes me want to avoid the monsters as much as I can since it's not worth the battle.

 

2) I'd like it, if the monsters got stronger, or if new monsters to the area. Just something that makes go back through the area worth it and not tedious.

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I'm not a huge fan of battles. I know they're (usually) necessary to add excitement, but they're never the reason why I play an RPG.

 

So anyway, random attacks are a big pet peeve. An even bigger pet peeve is random attacks in a game where you can't save wherever you want. I've already mentioned how it's annoying when it's impossible/difficult to avoid lower level monsters and you're a million times stronger than them and they only give out a tiny bit of gold/XP.

 

In some RPGs like Eternal Eden and Dawn's Light, the monsters don't respawn after you kill them, meaning that you don't spend any time at all reentering areas over and over again to level up. I think that's really efficient and lets you focus more on the fun aspects of the game. The downside is that then you might find yourself wandering through empty rooms with no monsters as "landmarks" and get lost.

 

As far as making battles fun goes, I think I "enjoy" hack-and-slash more than turn-based, as battles go. It's faster paced and more exciting to just slash up your enemy instead of waiting for everyone to take their turn. But, as I said in the other thread, the downside is that it can make using magic and other skills awkward.

 

But anyway, since most story-based RPGs have turn-based battles, here are some suggestions.

 

#1. In terms of areas with lower-level monsters, make them easy to avoid if you choose to do so. Don't have unavoidable low-level monsters like the spider on the bridge.

 

#2. If monsters adjust to your level like in Fated Haven, they should give out more XP as they get more difficult.

 

#3. I like a lot of different skills for the different characters. Different kinds of magic spells (including spells that work on the whole party of monsters), plus some other kinds of skills that don't use magic (such as Te'ijal's Drain skill in AV3). Plus, different animations for the different skills is a plus.

 

#4. Some RPGs have a "rush" option, which just has every party member attack without you having to assign actions to each character. This is useful when dealing with a lower-level monster.

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1) To me, battles are annoying when I am attempting to explore an area. Random pop-up battles cannot be helped, but the ones with visible enemies that can be avoided, I kill right away just to get them over and done with. If I am in a hurry to heal my party, I will avoid said monsters, so I prefer that there is room for maneuvering. A stealth option (where the party is invisible to monsters) would come in handy in such times.

 

2) Something that would make fighting interesting would be having special enemies that are not necessarily bosses (but are stronger than normal enemies and drop much more desirable loot) spawn after certain conditions are met (ie. defeated a certain number of enemies, stayed in the area for a certain number of time, carrying a certain item, etc etc--the list is endless). That would certainly ensure that people go looking for fights.

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1. Pretty much all yes to your question. I hate fighting things that are low level to me since that means they give inferior EXP (Like 5 when I need a 1000.) and rewards (2GP is useless when I require at least 500).

 

I also hate fighting if I don't need to fight them and am just trying to get from A -> B as quickly as possible but all these monsters are in my way. This could be solved with a fast travel.

 

Another thing I get tired of quickly in AV is the battle music and victory music. I like some variety in my battles though I usually fix this by putting my own music on.

 

2. Level scaled monsters sounds interesting. Might get stuck though if you level up but your equipment is still 5 levels behind meaning the monster is going to kick your butt.

 

I like the 'monsters only appear once' solution, but balancing that sounds like murder. Especially if you're trying to farm for levels and/or equipment but you've already killed everything around/below your level.

 

I'm intrigued what a real time based AV would be like, but it crashed APv2 so I'm tentative about it.

 

What I would like the most is something like Pokemon: Skip all battle animation and victory scene. Oh, and add a flee button. That way I don't have to fight monsters unless I want to, and if I need to farm I can do it as quickly. Because to be honest: Almost nothing in RPG games will get me to not get tired with fighting, especially ones where I have to farm to level up and/or get equipment. It's bound to become repetitive and tiring.

 

The only games where I was alright with fighting most of the time were games with excellent Balance in their fighting system like Grandia 2. In that game, I just had to fight the monsters that were in my way and never had to actively grind for gold/EXP. I'd kill about 10-20, and than bam! next part in the storyline. No backtracking or anything like that.

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1. The battles are annoying when you are literally over-killing the enemies, and without any use. The easy way to solve this would be to put a switch, as when a story part is completed, the enemies to change in a respective area, or to be changed accordingly to the stats of the player, if the player meets certain stat points.

 

2. Final Fantasy IV - The After Years had a rather weird mechanism - depending on the moon phase, a certain monster may pop up in a random battle, and might drop a item to be traded. That was annoying. It would be fun if, let's say, in a dungeon or area you find a secret section, which you complete, and there you get an item. Upon obtaining that item ( whatever may it be ), a random, boss-similar type of monster to appear and follow the player. Upon defeat, you loose that item ( Possibly needed to kill the enemy, and you get his item in return, which would be a rare on. ). Making enemies ultra rare and their drop rate insanely low will only serve players nerve-wrecking and rage-quits when they die of too many attempts. (Speaking from experience, I got murdered by Green Dragons at least 11 times, I fought them enough times, and uselessly, no drops. That just drives players insane. )

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1. Battles become annpying, when u are almost dead and sudenly u cant get away from a monster u battle it and u die. Thnk God it only happened to me once but i got mad =). Also when we are very high lvl ofc it is waaay to boring to fight some stupid bees in a battle screen. i would fight them if instead of the battle screan, i could fight like in Ahrimans Prophecy. And i would never try to avoid fighting if i could fight like in Ahrimans Prophecy. Could it be possible for us to have an Option for battle screen to be on or off?

 

2. As i said above if i could fight like in Ahrimans Prophecy i would look for fights and not avoid them. But also like Shaz said the weak monsters could be replaced with new stronger ones after some point of the game...

 

 

But for me the most annpying thing in Aveyond and maybe the only one is the battel screen... all this time used to take me to the battle screen makes me nervous =d.

 

=)

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As I skimmed most of the replies, I saw nobody mention the following:

1) It really annoys me when I can't get to the next area just because I have a very low level and I have to fight the monsters A LOT to get some decent EXP.

 

For example, in AV1: I had to fight the two chickens by the entrance of Veldarah for a good couple of hours to get a level high enough not to get killed by the crows in the Wildwoods. And that was because the chickens gave SO little EXP.

 

Another example, still from AV1: The Demon Caves, at the fairy cave entrance, where I am sure most of AV1 players level up, where there is a group of three winged snakes and one lizardman. They give some really good EXP but only until you get to level 70-ish. And even all the way there is annoying because you have to battle them another good period of time.

To sum up, I hate it when I have to repeat a battle a lot of times to get enough exp.

 

2)It would be lovely if I could battle monsters and gain enough EXP and levels to move to the next area rather than get there and wonder "wait, I died. Am I supposed to be here? But there's nowhere else I can go!" and so on. Like, I walk through the Eastern Isle Forest once I get the druid quest and after beating up all the monsters on the map, I can go to the WildWoods and not get instantly pathetically killed by two crows. I hope that makes sense.

 

And as I mentioned before, I am totally for the idea of the monsters leveling up as the heroes do. That would help a lot in avoiding what I just said.

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@Ruffi 1. There were the caves with rats and snakes where you could level really easy. Regarding the Demon Caves, I just got Rhen's Shadow Sword, some Aquifolium Extoras, and used Nightbird Song to wipe out the enemies, and I just exited from the cave with the pixies and out again to kill them. It took me 30 minutes to get to level 99 from 67.

 

2. There is a reason for that. If the player will succeed in defeating enemies stronger than the upcoming area, he will have no difficulty in raiding the upcoming dungeon. Or you'd prefer a dungeon full of strong masters that can mop the floor with you, and some really weak pre-enemies.

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Probably nobody mentioned it because I'm not asking about hard battles that slow down your advancement in the game - I'm asking about fighting monsters later in the game that you already fought earlier, and are now much stronger than them. The only reason you fight them is that they're in your way - their EXP and loot aren't really helpful anymore.

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Then, maybe get the certain monster to drop something rarely. At least I will beat some to get just a little chance.

 

There are also RPGs that used side quests to fight monsters in quite amount.

 

Oh, and if it's monster like on the bridge, could it be at least lone? Just to save more time.

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Okay, I think I've come up with a nice compromise that should mix the fast pace of an ABS with the decision-making abilities of a TBS. Now I only have to do two things:

 

1. Completely rewrite the entire battle system

2. Send out a demo to a few people to get their feedback

 

Sounds easy, when you say it like that ;)

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I've come to the realization that it's going to be pretty hard to make a separate demo using RTP scripts, as this is going to be too well integrated into other mods (mouse, party size, battle spoils and more).

 

Still, I'll see what I can do.

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In response to Ruffi's earlier post:

 

Maybe have the lower level monsters "run away" from you if you gained high enough levels. The effect is similar in using Beast Repellent, only that the effect is permanent. In that way, you know you are ready to venture in new areas.

 

On second thoughts... wouldn't it be lonely with no monsters around?

 

Again, as mentioned by someone above I also like the idea of monsters gaining levels as the party gains levels. More EXP. Better loots. ;)

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Two words: Eternal Eden. I absolutely adored the fighting style in EE - and for those who haven't played, I'll shorten the explanation: Basically, monsters don't respawn in each room, but not only do you get the 'Hall of Treasures' unlocked when you defeat ALL the monsters in a dungeon, the fighting also gets you well and prepared for the bosses so you don't have to do any level grinding at all, which is more than just tedious. The Hall of Treasures gives you a very nice motivation boost too. :)

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I don't know if this is possible but if there were some sort of switch or something for when you've come to the end of a map that a character can click to take away the monsters in the area for future re-runs into that map then it's up to the user's choice on whether or not to keep on fighting the same monsters. I have no idea if that's possible but it's an idea!

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Deadly Sin has something like that. They're called "Monster Nodes" and when you activate them all the monster attacks are turned off for that particular area. You can't turn the attacks back on, though.

 

I believe Chaos Rings also have a similar system. When you are in a "battle arena", there is this option to disable the monsters (excepting bosses, of course); the best thing is, you can re-enable the battles, so if you decided that your level is not high enough to finish off the stage boss or you need more loot/cash for battle items, you can simply enable the monsters, and fight them all over again.

 

The best thing about this? Whenever you level up by 10, you unlock a harder level of the stage; so that while the maps are still the same, the monsters are stronger, thus bringing more EXP/Rewards.

 

As for battle systems, I prefer hack-and-slash compared to turn-based; but by this, I don't mean the AP-style of battle, where you have to go through all the trouble toggling skill-bars to find a suitable skill to fight one monster. I prefer the use of combo buttons and massive fights, like the ones in Dynasty Warriors series or Dragon Nest, where with the right moves, you can kill 20 monsters at once, or something like that.

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