Optimal Size of a RPG party
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July 19th, 2010, 21:24
If the focus is on the tactical gameplay, then 8 is not too much, I think. Especially if there is really room for tactical variability. One thing to worry about then is to keep the amount of micromanagement to a reasonable degree. Inventory management for 8 characters could be a true horror - so either you limit the options there, or come up with some automation or a REALLY slick inventory management interface.
I hope the tactical focus also means that the game focuses more on thoroughly designed battles that really require tactics to "solve" them instead of a lot of random encounters where the odds are 90% in favor of the party? If there is a lot of filler combat I'd prefer a smaller party, to keep the encounters short enough to maintain interest. If we are talking larger, scripted tactical battles, I'd prefer a large party with lots of interesting options, which also gives some leeway for loosing characters - i.e. winning a battle with 6 out of 8 characters may be more feasible then with 2 out of 4.
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