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Erthad
01-07-2012, 06:08 PM
What makes an RPG?

I have seen people complain that Mass Effect lost a lot of it's RPG elements going into #2. I have also seen people say that Skyrim shouldn't even be considered an RPG.

Should a good RPG be more about the story and less about the world/setting?

Should the story be more centralized around one character(the player), and should they impact the story greatly?

Is crafting your character in a story way(bastard or saint) the most important?(Or how important?, is it needed?)
Is defining their role needed? Creating a Knight who is very defensive, being able to shrug off enemy attacks because of armor, high health, and a shield. Or a Mage to summon arcane energies to destroy enemies, or making a witch and only using abilities to confuse enemies and summon demons and undead, being able to customize them.

Should you be able to do what ever you want in the setting or should your role be outlined.

Basically what do you think good RPGs should be about?

Omacron
01-07-2012, 06:21 PM
A good RPG is about choice. That choice can be about gameplay (such as choosing the stats and abilities of your player character), it can be about story choices like choosing to romance someone or kill someone else, or it can even be as meta as choices in building your actual world like Minecraft or SimCity.


What is not an RPG is a game wherein there's only one course of action throughout the game. Modern "corridor" shooters, adventure games with only one path, 90s FMV games and the like. I'm personally wondering if WoW is an RPG anymore due to the prevalence of things like cookie cutter builds and ElitistJerks so that each character is built pretty much the same way... while the choice is there it's so undesirable it's effectively gone.

Erthad
01-07-2012, 06:36 PM
A good RPG is about choice. That choice can be about gameplay (such as choosing the stats and abilities of your player character), it can be about story choices like choosing to romance someone or kill someone else, or it can even be as meta as choices in building your actual world like Minecraft or SimCity.


What is not an RPG is a game wherein there's only one course of action throughout the game. Modern "corridor" shooters, adventure games with only one path, 90s FMV games and the like. I'm personally wondering if WoW is an RPG anymore due to the prevalence of things like cookie cutter builds and ElitistJerks so that each character is built pretty much the same way... while the choice is there it's so undesirable it's effectively gone.

I think choice is a reasonable definition but is that too broad? Is Minecraft really an RPG or is a line drawn somewhere?

Omacron
01-07-2012, 06:37 PM
I think choice is a reasonable definition but is that too broad? Is Minecraft really an RPG or is a line drawn somewhere?

The line is drawn at linearity.

Dohoho.

Chef
01-07-2012, 06:39 PM
I say that if you want a good RPG, you should stick to good ol' Dungeons and Dragons.

Ashendant
01-07-2012, 06:45 PM
I say that if you want a good RPG, you should stick to good ol' Dungeons and Dragons.

Warhammer 40k RPG is pretty good

(except for the fact that they slam Chaos everywhere...)

Erthad
01-07-2012, 06:47 PM
The line is drawn at linearity.

Dohoho. But you can always find ways around that. In Halo:Reach there were some levels that had objectives that could be completed in different orders, even Halo: Combat Evolved had that. Also the Forge mode allowed you to make new maps.


Is Starcraft an RPG because you can go bio, mech, or air?

Omacron
01-07-2012, 06:52 PM
But you can always find ways around that. In Halo:Reach there were some levels that had objectives that could be completed in different orders, even Halo: Combat Evolved had that. Also the Forge mode allowed you to make new maps.


Is Starcraft an RPG because you can go bio, mech, or air?

Alright, let me be a bit more specific: an RPG has different goals or end scenarios within its units, be they maps, levels, dungeons, set pieces, quest endings, whatever. Taking different routes to the same end point usually does not constitute an RPG unless they differ to the point where they constitute a significantly different gameplay or narrative experience.

Revenant
01-07-2012, 06:52 PM
I define the genre as a game where you play a role, and answer the question of "what would you do?"

Wabbajack
01-07-2012, 07:15 PM
Warhammer 40k RPG is pretty good

(except for the fact that they slam Chaos everywhere...)

Technically Dark Heresy, Rogue Trader, Deathwatch and Black Crusade are four similar yet different PnP RPGs.


Also: Best PnP RPG is Dungeons: The Dragoning 40k 7th Edition (http://lawfulnice.blogspot.com/)

Ashendant
01-07-2012, 07:57 PM
Technically Dark Heresy, Rogue Trader, Deathwatch and Black Crusade are four similar yet different PnP RPGs.


Also: Best PnP RPG is Dungeons: The Dragoning 40k 7th Edition (http://lawfulnice.blogspot.com/)

I know they are intertwined a lot, doesn't stop them from being good, and Deathwatch would be really good if a RPG that is about fighting Xenos didn't have a third of the book dedicated to Non-xenos chaos...

Wabbajack
01-07-2012, 08:01 PM
There's Mark of the Xenos and Creatures Anathema (a Dark Heresy Book) for all your xenos need.

Ashendant
01-07-2012, 08:02 PM
There's Mark of the Xenos and Creatures Anathema (a Dark Heresy Book) for all your xenos need.

A third of the Mark of the Xenos is about Daemons... and another third is about Heretics and inquisitors...

Euphemialibritannia
01-07-2012, 08:07 PM
I would say as long as there is character building, whether linear like old school JRPGs or nonlinear, makes it an rpg. Although it doesn't necessarily have to be just rpg to be classified as such, heck even stuff with minimal growth like Bioshock I'd consider an rpg.

Wabbajack
01-07-2012, 08:13 PM
A third of the Mark of the Xenos is about Daemons... and another third is about Heretics and inquisitors...

67 pages on Xenos, 18 on Heretics and 29 on Chaos.

Kadifa
01-07-2012, 08:19 PM
An RPG is not just about you the player or you the character. It's also about the characters that you meet, whether they be companions, villains or otherwise.

Give me a cliche-ridden story if you must. But put in characters that are compelling and that I would always remember.

Ashendant
01-07-2012, 08:20 PM
67 pages on Xenos, 18 on Heretics and 29 on Chaos.

... still too much chaos, and it focused too much on the main enemies

Al trough i gotta admit the Chaos/Soul robots were pretty cool, specially the Gargoyle-like planetary doomsday robot

I just feel that for a game about killing Xenos there too little Xenos and too much chaos, mainly there isn't any Xenos races explored besides the main ones(Ork, Tyranid, Tau), the Tau in this series however are amazing, just amazing.

EDIT:Creatures Anathema had some really cool one like the Enoulians, Simulacra and the Cruorian War Beast (would be really cool to see a inquisitor using that thing)

Fordragon
01-08-2012, 03:02 PM
It needs three things:

1- Character arcs. Some characters in the game need to develop and grow somehow. Skyrim doesn't do this, which is why I consider it a fantasy sandbox game, a GTA: Ren Fair.

2- exploration. Even if it's just side rooms in dungeons that have treasure or going to other towns earlier than in the plot or backtracking to old towns because there's some extra thing there (e.g. In Chrono Trigger, you get short scenes where your party members meet Crono's mom, or going to Lucca's house to get new gear).

3- A mechanic for finite growth. Generally this means a level cap to keep you from maxing every stat and skill, or at least a point where the XP curve becomes extraordinarily high (like in Chrono Trigger around level 65+, or Fallout 2 after level 24 or so).

Gortrash
01-08-2012, 03:11 PM
I define the genre as a game where you play a role, and answer the question of "what would you do?"

By that definition that's every game you ever played. :glare:

Omacron
01-08-2012, 04:28 PM
It needs three things:

1- Character arcs. Some characters in the game need to develop and grow somehow. Skyrim doesn't do this, which is why I consider it a fantasy sandbox game, a GTA: Ren Fair.

2- exploration. Even if it's just side rooms in dungeons that have treasure or going to other towns earlier than in the plot or backtracking to old towns because there's some extra thing there (e.g. In Chrono Trigger, you get short scenes where your party members meet Crono's mom, or going to Lucca's house to get new gear).

3- A mechanic for finite growth. Generally this means a level cap to keep you from maxing every stat and skill, or at least a point where the XP curve becomes extraordinarily high (like in Chrono Trigger around level 65+, or Fallout 2 after level 24 or so).
I don't think 1 and 3 are required for an RPG at all. The former is just for stories, and an RPG doesn't necessarily need a story, and the latter is just silly.

Fordragon
01-08-2012, 04:43 PM
Generally role-playing requires some kind of character arc, even a minor one. It's the difference between role-playing and wargaming. And "just silly" isn't an intelligent argument. Having a framework for character growth has been a thing since Chainmail; I just didn't want to limit it to levels because, for example, SWG gained skills instead.