iPhone App Directory
RPG Maker VX
 
Gallery Members Search Calendar Help


Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

Collapse

>Announcement

Keep an eye out for the upcoming 3rd Quarter Contest!
 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> The Speed of the Level, Hopefully a helpful topic on leveling.
AtmasSylphen
post Apr 4 2012, 04:53 AM
Post #1



Group Icon


Type: Writer
Alignment: Neutral Evil




I've spent a very long time deeply involved with the RPG genre. From my first RPG game, Quest 64 (Oh how I miss that game), to the all the Final Fantasy games I have beaten, (Nearly all of them) and even now as I attempt to create my own game I have come across a wide variety of information. Lately I have been thinking of the leveling factor that is present in nearly every RPG ever made, and I want to share with anyone who will listen the Five Speeds of Leveling. Remember this is all just my opinion.
1. Speed: Fast
Stat Gain: Low
Usefulness: This type of leveling speed is good for small, short, or fast pace games. The low stat gain can make calculating how strong to make the enemies easier and
allows the player to see a measured progress in their characters overall strength.
Fun Factor: A game with this type of leveling can be fun if the enemies don't become too overpowered. The fast leveling can be exciting at first, but after several levels and very little stat gain overall, it can feel almost needless to level. However, this is a godsent to casual gamers who can't stand 5 minutes of grinding.
Example Game: Arc the Lad 2

2. Speed: Fast
Stat Gain: High
Usefulness: Again, useful for small games and, unless there is a very high level cap, this can make for a very short game. Good for players who don't spend alot of time in one area to prepare for the next. This type can make it difficult to provide a decent challenge to the player, as in a few short battles they can steamroll whatever was giving them issues. Also useful for games that don't have a high focus on fighting. Better for games with a low level cap.
Fun Factor: If done right, this type of leveling can appeal to hardcore and casual gamers alike. Fast leveling and high stat gains really turn on that "Satisfaction" switch that exists in all gamers when they feel like they've achieved something.
Example Game: Can't think of one o.o someone help?

3. Speed: Medium
Stat Gain: Medium
Usefulness: The Goldilocks zone of leveling. This type of leveling is the "Need 1000 Exp" for every level. Its always the same speed. And because its always the same, the stats should never be too low or high with every level. Otherwise, you'll have situations where the player is getting stronger than before for the same amount of work, or not getting enough reward for the work they do.
Fun Factor: While this type is the epitome of balance, it can become dreadfully dull... even to the point when grinding becomes a robotic action with more of the same. High levels can feel very unepic and on some games that use this, I forgot about levels all together.
Example Game: .Hack

4. Speed: Slow
Stat Gain: High
Usefulness: Useful for long, complex, or slow paced games. This type at first seems like a grinding chore, however, with high stat gains, can reduce grinding considerably. This type combined with a very high level cap can appeal to those completionists who enjoy leveling. The slow leveling can feel like a hassle sometimes, but with the high stat gain, all it takes is one level to make a previously difficult boss fight, much more survivable.
Fun Factor: My personal favorite as it is centered toward hardcore gamers, but can appeal to casuals as well. The keyword here is, "Grinding is optional" since with just one level you could move on to the next area, or you can stay for a few more levels and breeze right on through the next three areas.
Example Game: Disgaea (Although, it can feel fast when your going through item worlds)

5. Speed: Slow
Stat Gain: Low
Usefulness: The bane of leveling junkies everywhere. The equivalent of working a 20 hour shift and being told your getting paid for half that... at a minimum wage rate. Combining this with a low level cap is just cruel and usual punishment. Now for a game where leveling is the last thing on a players mind this is perfect, because it allows them to go through each situation confident that they can handle it. However, screwing up enemy balancing can lead to a grindtastic game.
Fun Factor: With a huge level cap, and a proper damage formula this type can be fun for the most hardcore of gamers, but can really feel like a chore to get from point A to point B in a decent amount of time.
Example Game: Dragon Quest 8!

Those are my Five Speeds of Leveling, though there are much more than five and recently the "Stat gains with levels" is becoming "old school" I still think its one of the best leveling systems an RPG can have.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
   
amerk
post Apr 4 2012, 12:45 PM
Post #2



Group Icon


Type: Writer
Alignment: Unaligned




Thanks for sharing. Here are my thoughts:

1. Can be pretty nice, especially for simple projects that mimic older style games that didn't have very high levels and stats. Not my top choice, but definitely considerable.

2. Good for games where a person can decide whether or not they wish to grind, thus having a bit of control of the difficulty in-game. A person who wants to grind until they are super tanks have that option; and a person who wants to just roll through, only fight was necessary, and use strategy in boss battles also has that option.

3. You mentioned this was dull, and not your favorite. It depends on your view of "medium". If you make everybody drop the same EXP, then I agree, it is dull, and there's no point in fighting some of the stronger enemies. However, this may be perfect for a game where you eliminate random encounters and have enemies present on the field. And make it so when the enemy is dead, they are gone forever. But then you need to ensure you are balancing out gold drops as well. A better idea for a medium curve is make the EXP gains consistently higher but at the same speed (ie., to get to Level 2 you need 500 EXP, to get to level 3 you need 1000 EXP, Level 4 needs 1500 = adding an extra 500 EXP that must be gained for each new level), and adjust the balance so you really only need to gain a couple of levels for each area without the need for grinding. A medium curve also allows for better strategy against enemies than simply grinding to gain stats, since focus would be more on use of skills and attack patterns.

4. Nice idea but again this just makes it so grinding to get that boost in stats is needed. Not a problem for some people, whereas others prefer having a better balance without the need for high stats.

5. For this to work, it's best to keep enemies at a minimal and probably eliminate grinding. Story-related fights work best and maybe EXP gains focused more on exploration than just fighting.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
   
AtmasSylphen
post Apr 5 2012, 01:28 AM
Post #3



Group Icon


Type: Writer
Alignment: Neutral Evil




Thanks amerkevicius for your input and I whole heartedly agree with you about the medium speed type. Its just one of those leveling types that is rarely used, and when it is, can be pretty boring. However, with the way you mentioned it, I would love to play a game that had this type. I think figuring out how your players are going to level and how strong they will become should be one of the most important key factors in a combat based RPG. Another little tidbit I want to add is the "Obsession with high numbers" gimmick that most people have. Controling a character with 50 Attack, and thats supposed to be incredible for in-game stats, is sometimes not as appealing as controling a character with 500... or even 5,000 Attack. When I create my games I try to appeal to this obsession as much as I can. My current game has an absurdly high level cap, but I plan on crafting the leveling experience so that the storyline battles always give enough levels to allow you to get through the next area without grinding. Sorry I'm just rambling now XD signing off now.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
   
amerk
post Apr 5 2012, 05:10 AM
Post #4



Group Icon


Type: Writer
Alignment: Unaligned




For the Medium style, I follow ZeroManArmy's Level Balance as a sort of guide (includes an EXP Fix that's easy to follow). I recommend using that for that style, as it's easy to follow and balance with.

http://www.rpgmakervx.net/index.php?showtopic=38049

Although I might be inclined to work with your second and fourth leveling options as well.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
   

Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 

Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 23rd July 2014 - 11:24 PM

RPGMakerVX.net is an Privacy Policy, Legal.