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Thread: We can rebuild him, make him faster, stronger...

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Eureka! We can rebuild him, make him faster, stronger...

    For awhile now there has been a dialogue, or more correctly people shouting and no one listening... about the future and direction of the genre. About whether the glory age of big budget JRPGs has fallen and shifted to smaller but niche fanbases. On whether the WRPG has risen again and will pave the new future of the genre or if this is simply another fad before their fifteen minutes are up and be shifted to the huge sales of MMOs that are fighting the new issue of paid service or F2P models.

    This is not a thread really about that, this is actually more about what you want to see in the future of the genre as a whole. Let's assume for the sake of argument that the genre is on the ropes, what do you feel would improve the genre and what would you like to see in the next console generation?

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    Skyblade's Avatar
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    My friend Delzethin is currently running a GoFundMe account to pay for some extended medical troubles he's had. He's had chronic issues and lifetime troubles that have really crippled his career opportunities, and he's trying to get enough funding to get back to a stable medical situation. If you like his content, please support his GoFundMe, or even just contribute to his Patreon.

    He can really use a hand with this, and any support you can offer is appreciated.

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    VeloZer0's Avatar
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    For me turn based/semi turn based is a big thing that attracts me to combat. if I want something faster and more real time, well then I play a different genre.

    That an less melodrama in character 'development'. I would rather have a far simpler game with characters that aren't as fleshed out than have characters where I have to experience their entire whiny life story in agonizing detail. Good character exposition is difficult to do, that's why it is remembered when it is done well. Don't treat it like a check box to tick. If you can't do it well, or it doesn't fit your game then leave some things up to the imagination.
    >>Am willing to change opinions based on data<<

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    I expect a Renaissance incoming. Right now we are seeing the beginnings of "AA"/double-A development in gaming. For years most of the publisher's tried to more or less keep pace with budgets but this became unfeasible in the last generation, evidenced by now-infamous studio closures. The self-publishing indie revolution and the success of free to play has fundamentally changed that trajectory. Not only do you have big publishers now marketing smaller downloadable titles but indies are getting a little more ambitious and middle of the road PC developers are staking their claim in the console space. Hence the beginnings of a AA digital space.

    I think the classic JRPG has a chance to thrive in this arena. You don't need crazy production values but polished art design goes a long way. You can spend more time tinkering with game mechanics rather than trying to make it all work with over elaborate 3D models and environments. Good composers can truly stand out here. And you don't need to hire voice actors and directors, you can get away with a novel and surprising plot. Sounds a lot like the handheld space, except it grants access to a little more power, better network support, and the chance for the big publishers to take it a lot more seriously. Child of Light opened the door for a JRPG renaissance, it's up to Japan now to capitalize on it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bolivar View Post
    I expect a Renaissance incoming. Right now we are seeing the beginnings of "AA"/double-A development in gaming. For years most of the publisher's tried to more or less keep pace with budgets but this became unfeasible in the last generation, evidenced by now-infamous studio closures. The self-publishing indie revolution and the success of free to play has fundamentally changed that trajectory. Not only do you have big publishers now marketing smaller downloadable titles but indies are getting a little more ambitious and middle of the road PC developers are staking their claim in the console space. Hence the beginnings of a AA digital space.

    I think the classic JRPG has a chance to thrive in this arena. You don't need crazy production values but polished art design goes a long way. You can spend more time tinkering with game mechanics rather than trying to make it all work with over elaborate 3D models and environments. Good composers can truly stand out here. And you don't need to hire voice actors and directors, you can get away with a novel and surprising plot. Sounds a lot like the handheld space, except it grants access to a little more power, better network support, and the chance for the big publishers to take it a lot more seriously. Child of Light opened the door for a JRPG renaissance, it's up to Japan now to capitalize on it.
    I'd actually say that this is true for more than just JRPGs. I think the "AAA Bubble" is essentially breaking.

    Which is kind of weird. I'd seen an article in a business magazine only a few months ago explaining why AAA Games just made more business sense. The argument was that having a singular investment meant that you only needed a singular product in order to be successful, while putting your money into a multitude of products meant that they all needed to be successful for the company to succeed. Therefore, every company was going to be shifting to an approach that put the most money on a single game, and directed it to the largest audience.

    This view massively overlooks a number of facts, however. The first is that it's a lot harder for an expensive title to be successful. Look at Tomb Raider. The game sold relatively well by any reasonable measure, yet failed from a business sense because it had so much money pumped into it that needed to be regained. Then, look at Bravely Default. A smaller game, for a smaller budget and a smaller system. In terms of sales numbers, it's still not as high as Tomb Raider. It hasn't even broken the one million sales mark yet (because people are idiots and aren't buying a fantastic JRPG). Yet it sold well enough, compared to the investment and the sales expectations, to make a major corporation sit up and decide to review their strategy. Let me tell you, that is no easy task.

    The second thing it overlooks is the market. The current AAA trend has been attempting to homogenize the gaming market into something that only appeals to the largest demographic. We've all seen it, we've all noticed it. More and more games have lost their identity as publishers try to make them appeal to the mass market, and essentially only holding their name to pull in older fans. This approach hasn't really worked, and it has hurt game sales as well. Fans of old Lara Croft who don't appreciate the changes to the character. Fans of Hitman who don't appreciate the much more linear nature of the newer games. Etcetera. What's worse, it doesn't pull in newer fans either. The market is already glutted with well designed games that appeal to the largest demographic. Trying to edge in on that market is not going to be easy, because most companies don't have the practice and the mechanics to do as well. Even if they did, they're going to have to lure customers away from the already successful IPs that are in that market space, because customers aren't going to buy fifteen games at a time. There is a limited amount of money to be spent on luxuries, and games are in competition for that money.

    The current mindset of "largest production value possible" is not going to hold. Neither, for that matter, are the bubbles that WolfKanno brought up. The MMO market never really got off the ground. There were a host of them at various points, but the time investment required already means that those are in strict competition. The move to a Free-to-Play model has saved a couple, but none of them are really going to be the market pinnacle that World of Warcraft was. Free-to-Play games are also going to crash at some point. Mostly because, like the 1983 crash, we're getting a deluge of shoddy products that are nothing but cash grabs. The mobile market can hold it for a while (especially with the dangerously addictive nature of the Free-to-Play model), but I really don't think it will last either. There will be more and more, they'll inflate, and then they'll crash. Heck, we've already seen King drop in value by 18% since it went to the public market (bwa ha ha ha ha, I love to see King do badly), and they are one of the Free-to-Play leaders. Zynga also did poorly after the initial market bubble for them.

    Hence, my initial post. Bravely Default is the future of the genre. The genre is going to survive and prosper through good JRPGs. Companies will either realize this and start making more good titles, or they'll shift to another genre and market space will free up for others (or we'll have companies like ATLUS, who never moved away from the genre's strengths, and just continue to produce fantastic JRPGs). But the market demand will be met. Even when everyone claimed that JRPGs were dying a few years ago, I still found a constant stream available on my DS. This past year, we've seen a huge resurgence, and we've only got more great ones coming.


    TLDR: Bravely Default is the future of the genre, and what I want to see from the genre (answering both the thread topic, and the thread non-topic). It is what JRPGs are at heart, and what they should always be. Nothing more need be said.
    My friend Delzethin is currently running a GoFundMe account to pay for some extended medical troubles he's had. He's had chronic issues and lifetime troubles that have really crippled his career opportunities, and he's trying to get enough funding to get back to a stable medical situation. If you like his content, please support his GoFundMe, or even just contribute to his Patreon.

    He can really use a hand with this, and any support you can offer is appreciated.

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    VeloZer0's Avatar
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    I would be sad if JRPGs complete their move to hand-helds. I don't have a problem with a scaled down product, I just want to be able to play it on my TV.
    >>Am willing to change opinions based on data<<

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    programmed by NASIR black orb's Avatar
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    >>> More Dark Souls like games, I think people enjoy to be merciless mauled by hellish monsters that come out from nowhere.. And no guns or bad-ass characters please, is better to be just a naked loser with a rusty sword and a leather shield..
    >> The black orb glitters ominously... but nothing happens..

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    Defamation Depression Moon's Avatar
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    Give us some more gaht damn settings. I'm tired of everything either being medieval fantasy or futuristic sci-fi.

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Depression Moon View Post
    Give us some more gaht damn settings. I'm tired of everything either being medieval fantasy or futuristic sci-fi.
    Shin Megami Tensei has you covered.

    persona3run.jpg

    devilsummoner2_screens_11-620x.jpg

    avatar-1.jpg

    Tumblr_m1q72iwMCC1qjskumo1_1280.jpg

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    Feel the Bern Del Murder's Avatar
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    I'd say turn-based combat with a tactical edge. A game that really makes you think about turn order and what you do with your turns, where one false move can end the battle. Stop getting more and more 'real time' with the battles and have a bigger focus on planned strategy.

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Del Murder View Post
    I'd say turn-based combat with a tactical edge. A game that really makes you think about turn order and what you do with your turns, where one false move can end the battle. Stop getting more and more 'real time' with the battles and have a bigger focus on planned strategy.
    You basically just described MegaTen's Press Turn system and Bravery Deafult's system.

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    Feel the Bern Del Murder's Avatar
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    Yeah BD is on my list after I get done with Virtue's Last Reward. I realize it is kind of like a beacon of hope for JRPG enthusiasts everywhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Del Murder View Post
    Yeah BD is on my list after I get done with Virtue's Last Reward. I realize it is kind of like a beacon of hope for JRPG enthusiasts everywhere.
    That no one wants to talk about. I'm going to turn the forum into my own private lair at this rate.
    My friend Delzethin is currently running a GoFundMe account to pay for some extended medical troubles he's had. He's had chronic issues and lifetime troubles that have really crippled his career opportunities, and he's trying to get enough funding to get back to a stable medical situation. If you like his content, please support his GoFundMe, or even just contribute to his Patreon.

    He can really use a hand with this, and any support you can offer is appreciated.

  14. #14
    Feel the Bern Del Murder's Avatar
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    I'll post about it once I finally play it.

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    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    I adore the demo but I am flat broke and trying to finish school so I haven't had the chance to pick it up, otherwise I'd be talking about it.

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