Friday, January 08, 2010

RPGS: thoughts, comments, pipe dreams (plus a repost from 10/11/07)

A Polemic of Likes and Dislikes
  1. I'm going to keep saying this until someone listens and does something proper about it.  Make a proper quality next-gen Shadowrun/Cyberpunk 2020/Dark Future/Marid Audran game.  How hard is this?  We have the technology.  If FASA can put out a piece of crap shooter and slap the Shadowrun label on it...okay, okay to be fair I read Mitch Gitelman, (former?) FASA Studio Manager's blog about the 2007 release and I understand better where they were coming from and will stop pissing on their parade.  Hell who made a game that sold a shitton of copies and who didn't right?  However, I still agree with the folks who called it "Counter Strike with Elves".  I believe that a great deal of my disappointment is that Cyberpunk as a genre would be so awesome in a current-gen RPG format and the genre has fallen by the wayside.  Maybe I should just do this myself.
  2. Take a cue from Grand Theft Auto 4 and center gameplay on one city, one big ass totally awesome city.  No ice wastes, no jungle (though a zoo/aquarium would be awesome to fight in), endless opportunities for mission branching, DLC, etc, etc, etc,
  3. FUCK JRPGs.  No more Japanese psuedo Miyazaki mumbo jumbo eco-story lines - i.e. A band of misfits must restore the balance and heal the spirit of the life blood of the planet who has been turned into a monster/demon spirit by the evil corporate military-industrial complex that has angered the earth spirit/demon/life force by tapping into the life force/spirit energy and is causing a rift and our band of misfits must heal the wound in the spirit/life force in order to stop the angered demon spirit from destroying everyone and everything and sending all that we hold dear into a spiralling spiral of forgetful sadness. Oh yeah and one or more of the characters are plucky, sassy, and/or are some kind of anthropomorphic girl.
  4. Normal fantasy RPGs are boring. I've been playing them for over twenty years and eventually I get bored with the elves, dwarves, humans schtick. In the last quarter of the game I just get bored to the point that I go read a book or go outside or - god forbid - see what's on TV. 
  5. Grinding for EXP (see also 5). I liked the fact that I could train in "Elder Scrolls: Oblivion". Mindless, repetitive combat is not my idea of a good time.
  6. Idiotic dialogue. You all know what I mean; dialogue written by Ren-Faire castouts or translated by people who learned Japanese through only manga.
  7. Dungeon crawling (see also 3). I've crawled through miles and miles and miles and miles of dungeons, caverns, swamps, forests, ruins, temples, and sewers. Enough. Finis. Unless you are willing to spice it up with intelligent puzzles, challenging traps, and monsters - thank you "Overlord" xoxo - don't bother.
  8. Step and fetch quests. How about this get your own fucking crap?  "I need, I want..."  What about my needs and my wants?  Right now, I just wanna stick a machete in your head and take what I damn well please.
  9. How many of you remember something like this from the ye olde days of gaming? You need a key to enter the Dungeon of Stone. Speak to the gatekeeper in his hut outside the Dungeon of Stone. He is bored and needs something to read, perhaps a book. Where do I get a book? He doesn't know but perhaps the Gatekeeper at the City of Air can tell you. Where is the City of Air? The Gatekeeper of Stone used to know but it has been so long that he has forgotten. Perhaps the Witch in the Forest of Gloom south of the Dungeon of Stone knows how to get to the City of Air. After wandering through the Forest of Gloom you find the Witch's House. Where's the Witch? Why is she not home? WTF! Break and steal everything not nailed down inside and outside the Witch's home. Decide to spend the night in her house. During the night you are awakened by the Witch's pet Ghost. The Ghost says that the Witch was kidnapped by the Shades of the Swamp of Mist. You can follow the Ghost through the Forest of Gloom to the edge of Swamp of Mist but can't show you through the Swamp of Mist because *cue flashback* the Ghost is tied to the Forest of Gloom. The Ghost warns that it is easy to get lost in the Swamp of Mist and mentions that if you had a light you could find you way much easier. Perhaps that Ruby from the Palace of Flame could be useful - it worked in Labyrinth of the Abyss. Equip. Press A to equip. Are you sure? Press A. To use press A. Are you sure? Press A. The Ruby has no energy. Walk back through the Forest of Gloom, past the Witch's house, past the Gatekeeper of Stone, across the Frosted Ice Plain, across the Mountain Peaks of Treachery, into the Halls of Ash, and speak to the Gatekeeper of Flame, enter the Castle of Flame, rest at the Inn, reequip - press A - and get into the Castle of Flame and then speak to His Majesty the Keeper of Flame. He says he'll power up the Ruby just this once. If you need to power it up again he will need a favor done for him. Like you didn't save his Kingdom of Flame from the Iron Beasts and their Digging Machines. Before you leave he mentions that if you him a favor then he will give you a gift. Do you accept? Press A for Yes or Press B for No. Jesus, since I'm here Yes. Are you sure? Press A. Apparently His Majesty the Keeper of the Flame has been having problems with his daughter the Princess of Flame, Ember. She has run off into the Molten Chasm and His Majesty is concerned for her safety. Will you find her and bring her back? Fortunately there is an entrance to the Molten Chasm in the dungeon and here is the key. Dungeon crawl the Molten Chasm. Princess Ember is fighting a Crimson Burrower and is doing well but falls down and you run to her aid. Defeat the Crimson Burrower thanks to Princess Ember's fire magic. Back to the throne room of the Palace of Flame, dysfunctional family dialogue, Ember joins you on your Quest, His Majesty allows you to loot the treasure rooms and gives Princess Ember her mother's weapons and armour. Apparently the Queen kicked ass and died. Reequip, visit the Inn, save. Now what the Hell were you supposed to do?  To tell the truth I miss classic RPGs and am glad some of them have been rereleased for the DS Lite.
  10. Dear creators of RPGs, please take my bitching with a grain of salt.  It's just my favorite genre.

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