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Default Survey about Turn-based RPG preferences - help out an indie dev

November 18th, 2020, 20:43
Hey there!

I'm the co-founder of an indie dev team working on a turn-based RPG. Our team worked together at a major AAA studio and branched out on our own to make the games wed want to play as gamers.

We are looking for people who have actively played games in the turn-based RPG genre to help inform our development. The purpose of this survey is to better understand your preferences in storytelling, exploration, and combat systems in the genre.

Survey Link: https://forms.gle/zcrPHABDV2dpTPfy5

This survey will take approximately 5 minutes to complete and feel free to post any questions/feedback on the survey here or through a DM.

We really appreciate your help!
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November 20th, 2020, 12:28
Answered the survey and even left you a rant about my personal vendetta against sloppy tagged on Steampunks elements into high fantasy, you're welcome

On the question about the size of parties in turn-based RPG, you could have made it possible to specify either 4, 5 or 6 max characters in the party, as I think that is it usually one of the three number of characters that people prefers to have in their party.

Personally I prefer 5 characters.

4 characters usually just force you to go along with the tank, stealth, magic and healer meta that exists in many games. It's also very annoying to find out that the special equipment, you looted from some boss, can't be used because it doesn't fit the meta build and/or a party character has a similar but slightly better equipment.

5 or 6 characters lets you choose more differently among classes and skill-builds without having to worry too much about the party being unbalanced, and there is a bigger chance that you can actually use whatever hard earned loot you got your hands on.
Last edited by MAHak; November 20th, 2020 at 13:51.
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November 20th, 2020, 13:48
Originally Posted by kalimist-_- View Post
Hey there!

I'm the co-founder of an indie dev team working on a turn-based RPG. Our team worked together at a major AAA studio and branched out on our own to make the games we’d want to play as gamers.

We are looking for people who have actively played games in the turn-based RPG genre to help inform our development. The purpose of this survey is to better understand your preferences in storytelling, exploration, and combat systems in the genre.
Great! And it's a good idea to get some data on what people like.

Perhaps this question should be clarified: "A new turn-based RPG should try to introduce new gameplay elements into the mix". I've already completed the survey and answered this one with what I thought, but I had some doubts
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November 20th, 2020, 18:46
Done.
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November 20th, 2020, 19:16
Completed as well.

I think it's not so much about the number of characters but the combination of systems.

The fewer characters the more RNG is an issue. That can be seen if you compare firaxis XCom with the original XCom or Xenonauts where you just got more characters to mitigate some of the RNG.
Also in a top down view you can have 3 characters with action points, so that they are able to be much more flexible during their turn or 6 characters with very restricted actions.

Another aspect is the character system. The more characters you have, the less complex the character system should be. Allocating 1 attribute 1 skillpoint per level on 6 chracters might be fine. But you don't want to plan out 6 characters with a system like in NWN2. That can quickly be overwhelming - and annoying.
You can work around that by using a hybrid system where you only have full control over a couple of characters (not sure if NWN2 had that as well). Anothe example would be Stonekeep. Not in terms of complexity, but you only have to take care of one character where the other characters are mostly automated.
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November 20th, 2020, 19:56
I completed this as well. My preference is for a team of either five to six that you control.
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November 20th, 2020, 20:09
Originally Posted by Kordanor View Post
The fewer characters the more RNG is an issue. That can be seen if you compare firaxis XCom with the original XCom or Xenonauts where you just got more characters to mitigate some of the RNG.
That's a pretty good point, the law of large numbers can be mean … with small numbers. But the RNG can still be annoying with dialog-based decisions, and those can be critical sometimes.

Originally Posted by Kordanor View Post
Another aspect is the character system. The more characters you have, the less complex the character system should be. Allocating 1 attribute 1 skillpoint per level on 6 chracters might be fine. But you don't want to plan out 6 characters with a system like in NWN2. That can quickly be overwhelming - and annoying.
You can work around that by using a hybrid system where you only have full control over a couple of characters (not sure if NWN2 had that as well). Anothe example would be Stonekeep. Not in terms of complexity, but you only have to take care of one character where the other characters are mostly automated.
That's one of the reasons why I'd rather have pre-created compagnions, the way Pathfinder implements it. You may just let them level up as planned, and if you want to micro-manage one or more, you have the option. Or as you said, full control on a limited number of characters, though controlling them all in combat is fine by me. No, I actually prefer controlling them all, especially when I think about Atom: a bad AI can really ruin the combat.

The other advantage is they have a backstory and that allows for more depth in the relationship, and personal companion quests.
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November 20th, 2020, 22:03
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
That's a pretty good point, the law of large numbers can be mean … with small numbers. But the RNG can still be annoying with dialog-based decisions, and those can be critical sometimes.


That's one of the reasons why I'd rather have pre-created compagnions, the way Pathfinder implements it. You may just let them level up as planned, and if you want to micro-manage one or more, you have the option. Or as you said, full control on a limited number of characters, though controlling them all in combat is fine by me. No, I actually prefer controlling them all, especially when I think about Atom: a bad AI can really ruin the combat.

The other advantage is they have a backstory and that allows for more depth in the relationship, and personal companion quests.
Yeah, you should definitely be able to control them in combat, unless they don't play an elemental role (like in Stonekeep again, but thats not turnbased). Wasteland 3 is the latest example where auto controlled characters (the pets) are a source of annoyance and they need their extra rules to not completely ruin the game (e.g. having much more hitpoints, similar to skyrim or other games where they just cant die).

I don't mind not having control about their skills. However, the game should not offer to do it automatically. That basically leads to feeling forced to do it yourself as you can do better than the AI. If it's all AI or some setting at the start of the game you can never change I am fine with it.
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November 21st, 2020, 14:23
That was a cool survey. Hope my answers help.
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November 22nd, 2020, 17:16
Originally Posted by kalimist-_- View Post
Hey there!

I'm the co-founder of an indie dev team working on a turn-based RPG. Our team worked together at a major AAA studio and branched out on our own to make the games we’d want to play as gamers.

We are looking for people who have actively played games in the turn-based RPG genre to help inform our development. The purpose of this survey is to better understand your preferences in storytelling, exploration, and combat systems in the genre.

Survey Link: https://forms.gle/zcrPHABDV2dpTPfy5

This survey will take approximately 5 minutes to complete and feel free to post any questions/feedback on the survey here or through a DM.

We really appreciate your help!
Care to give a bit more info on what you're planning to do?
Do you have already have a company name for your new project?
Do you need to remain anonymous for the time being (I'd say I see no reason why, but you never know)?
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November 22nd, 2020, 17:38
Yeah, I'd like a lot more information about the project. Personally, I'm not going to spend time filling out random anonymous surveys.
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November 22nd, 2020, 17:41
Regarding the party size, I think it depends on a lot of different factors. If you need to take a lot of things in consideration with every character you move, a large party can quickly get tedious (party size is a big reason for why I don't care much for Jagged Alliance 2: Wildfire, while I love Jagged Alliance 2). But if you choices are simple move and attack, and maybe the option to cast one out of a handful of spells then a larger party is fine.

Too few party members and you're limiting the tactical options in combat and you're also quite likely to push out characters with more niche utility (think cleric vs. druid in AD&D, for an optimal party you're likely to not take a druid unless you've already got all the core roles filled, while the cleric is one of the core characters).

In general I think that 6 characters is a pretty good number. But going much higher is dangerous (as it can start getting tedious). 5 is also fine, 4 is starting to be limiting and non-core classes/roles run the risk of getting pushed out. Of course this will ultimately depend on the game itself, the class balance and if you're able to get away from the good old healer/support - tank/frontliner - damage dealer trio, where having the best class for each role ends up being the preferred way of building your party.
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November 25th, 2020, 03:35
For me party of 8 works fine, but with an initiative system.

Play 8 characters 4 times isn't longer than play 4 characters 8 times, it's just a matter of balances, there's no need to swarm a party, 8 characters struggling against 4 strong enemies can works fine. And the game needs a system and a player option so enemies play at same time, that works very well in Temple of Elemental Evil.

I agree that 6 is safer, but Long War 2 combats with team of 10 or eventually 8 are my best remembering of this mod, and certainly not those with 4 to 6 characters.
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November 25th, 2020, 17:44
Filled out their survey emphasizing the importance of visceral amazing combat, then threatened them with extermination, if they FCK UP with their game!
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November 26th, 2020, 20:33
Well, it looks like our host created a quick account and did a one-time post, only to get the survey.

I should have known better than taking the time to filling it out.
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November 27th, 2020, 19:42
Ehhh, they might come back us. I don't feel used
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November 27th, 2020, 20:21
Originally Posted by Redglyph View Post
Well, it looks like our host created a quick account and did a one-time post, only to get the survey.

I should have known better than taking the time to filling it out.
Not the first time either. I learned to not bother with them.
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November 27th, 2020, 23:14
bah, the worst that can happen is that the results end up on a shelf somewhere and are never used. It's not as if they requested any personal informations.
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November 28th, 2020, 12:02
There's no harm done, but if we're spending some time on this, the least they could do is talking a bit about themselves instead of copying-pasting the same in different forums. I'm just giving two random ones, others have already removed it.. seems like they were not really well received either
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November 28th, 2020, 15:37
Did it, but I'm inexperienced in turn-based role-playing, since I didn't play many different games in the recent years.
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