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What are your thoughts on RPG Maker?

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  • What are your thoughts on RPG Maker?

    Is RPG Maker worth the price, or is it a scam? Is there potential to make a good game with it, or is RPG Maker just a program for noobs who don't know how to code?

    Here is your chance to tell the world what you think!

    I bought RPG Maker MV recently at a bargain price, and I have had some fun with it so far. However, I am curious to hear other peoples' thoughts.
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  • #2
    Like everything th at lets people make their own stuff, the majority of it will be crap. But it is capable of making some good stuff. Also you don't have to be a noob to use these kinds of things. For example Ia ctually know how to code enough to make a game using C++ and C#. But I have no artistic talent, and I just don't have the time to do it without taking too many big risks. Some RPG maker games Ilike are Last Dream and Ara Fell. Ara fell has really basic combat that prevents the game from being great, and the story is so-so. But holy fudge did the dude to an incredible job with level designs.

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    • #3
      Most of the RPG Maker games are not very good as the most people making these can't write proper story or have little to no experience making games at all. However there are still great games made using the RPG Maker. I return to the rpgmaker.net/games/ every so often to check out the games people made.

      The best RPG Maker ever I played was made by Rebel (now goes by Rabbi Ribbi) and is called The forbidden Saga, unfortunely the game is only in my native language (Czech) and will never be translated to english. Rabbi Ribbi also made other RPG maker games including Crimson Memories that have an english translation, although it is not that big or complicated game compared to Forbidden Saga.

      I still have copies of all the games (read disasters) I made that will never see the light of the day again.
      Last edited by BruceLeeNagato; 05-16-2019, 07:56 AM.
      I believe in myself and that's enough.

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      • Hyperweasle
        Hyperweasle commented
        Editing a comment
        Same, I have made so many games with the software, but never wanted to embarrass myself on releasing them to the public. Seriously, the people who release asset flips and garbage RPG Maker games have to be shameless people that I will never understand.

    • #4
      Buying it at bargain price, it's fun to mess around in, however if you are serious about making a game. RPG Maker despite it being simple to use isn't going to carry you through making the entire game. The best RPG maker games tend to be the ones that use custom sprite assets, music and tweaked gameplay.
      Expected some witty saying!? Yeah...well...I got nothing.

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      • #5
        It's used for a lot of erotica games.
        Celebrating over 1000 contributions of the highest quality! ♪

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        • #6
          Theres some amazing games made with RPG Maker such as To the Moon as well as the sequels. Its a tool and a good one at that but it wont make everyone a good game creator so its mostly know for bad projects but every now and then a true gem is created with RPG Maker. So yeah if you can get it cheaply (i got it for like 5 bucks in a humble bundle which is probably available about once a year it feels like) and if youre interested you should get it

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          • #7
            Hmm...
            Wonder if I should link some of my game pages from rpgmaker.net...

            The engine has nothing to do with the quality of the game. It's all on the developer. If you are a guy who buys this, never learns how to program or do anything else, and just uses the run time package to make a straight vanity game, then that's cool. If you use it well, you can still make a good game. One of the things that developers do though, and I'm one of these, is that we try to find ways to break the engine just to see if we can. For example, you wouldn't expect people to make first-person shooters in an RPG Maker, or that it would even be possible, and yet, we do. Side-scrolling platformers made in RPG Maker? They exist. I do stuff in Unity 3D these days, and yet, I still go back to RM VX Ace (I'm not super fond of the most recent one, MV. It's got quirks I seriously don't like.). Sometimes I get in the mood to make games in RM 2003. I've never broken the engine limits quite as hard as these devs that have made FPS's or side scrollers because those don't really interest me, but there's a couple of ways I've broken the system. RPG Maker is a good starting point. One thing you definitely learn is machine logic because while you don't need to code in order to use the system, you can still fall into all of the programmer's traps making a game in these systems (Remember this joke: A wife asks her husband, a computer programmer, to go to the store to get some bread, and if they have eggs, get a dozen. He comes home with a dozen loaves of bread. It's real. If you're not careful, RPG Maker (any engine, in fact) will do this to you.). It's a real engine. It's really designed to make real games. The only real reason people hate it is because you can buy it on sale twice a year for 12 bucks on Steam or for a dollar on Humble Bundle and so thousands of people have it and have flooded the net with shitty games made in RPG Maker. There is absolutely nothing wrong with RPG Maker and you can use it to make a 16-bit game with any graphics you like.

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            • #8
              It's an engine, and like every engine, the quality of the game is dependent on the person that works with it. RPG Maker gets a bad rep because it's so simple, anyone can make something that sort of resemble a game. Talented programmers have made excellent games with like To the Moon and OneShot, so people should at least hear what the game is about beforing turning away.
              "I game, therefore I am." - Abraham Lincoln

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              • #9
                Originally posted by pianotm View Post
                Hmm...
                Wonder if I should link some of my game pages from rpgmaker.net...

                The engine has nothing to do with the quality of the game. It's all on the developer. If you are a guy who buys this, never learns how to program or do anything else, and just uses the run time package to make a straight vanity game, then that's cool. If you use it well, you can still make a good game. One of the things that developers do though, and I'm one of these, is that we try to find ways to break the engine just to see if we can. For example, you wouldn't expect people to make first-person shooters in an RPG Maker, or that it would even be possible, and yet, we do. Side-scrolling platformers made in RPG Maker? They exist. I do stuff in Unity 3D these days, and yet, I still go back to RM VX Ace (I'm not super fond of the most recent one, MV. It's got quirks I seriously don't like.). Sometimes I get in the mood to make games in RM 2003. I've never broken the engine limits quite as hard as these devs that have made FPS's or side scrollers because those don't really interest me, but there's a couple of ways I've broken the system. RPG Maker is a good starting point. One thing you definitely learn is machine logic because while you don't need to code in order to use the system, you can still fall into all of the programmer's traps making a game in these systems (Remember this joke: A wife asks her husband, a computer programmer, to go to the store to get some bread, and if they have eggs, get a dozen. He comes home with a dozen loaves of bread. It's real. If you're not careful, RPG Maker (any engine, in fact) will do this to you.). It's a real engine. It's really designed to make real games. The only real reason people hate it is because you can buy it on sale twice a year for 12 bucks on Steam or for a dollar on Humble Bundle and so thousands of people have it and have flooded the net with shitty games made in RPG Maker. There is absolutely nothing wrong with RPG Maker and you can use it to make a 16-bit game with any graphics you like.
                Feel free to link some of your games! You seem like someone who knows what they are doing, so I would be interested to see what the engine is capable of.
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                • ethansito
                  ethansito commented
                  Editing a comment
                  tfw the response is about a page shorter than the quote

              • #10
                I knew To the Moon would be brought up. I personally don't like referring it though because it's more of a walking simulator than a game. I can't imagine it required good coding, just someone with a passion for writing short stories.... which is a totally cool use of the software if that's your thing don't get me wrong. But it's not something I would send gamers out to get for gaming reasons.

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                • #11
                  A Most Inconvenient Evening
                  This one doesn't really break the engine, but it took a bit of creative programming to do some things in it. It remains my favorite game I've made. This was a team game that I led. I drew the graphics, wrote the music, and the story. The game mostly uses the engine, but it is made a bit prettier with external scripts, there is a riddle answering section that puts the variable eventing through its paces, and there is a faux battle at the end that uses a script for side view battles (VX Ace is front view only.). You play as the dragon.

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                  This church is probably my favorite tiles I've ever made.

                  Dueling Penguins
                  I only just made this one. It's more of a mini-game, but it definitely breaks the engine. It's just a penguin running down the beach collecting fish. It's hard. Really hard. Again, all graphics are by me except for the power-up animation and literally every single noise in the game. The sound effects are just me making silly noises into a microphone and then seeing what I can turn them into with Audacity. Three pieces of music. Two of them by me and one of them is Dueling Banjos. Imagine a top-down snowboarding game. That's pretty much what this is.

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                  Grimm Investigations
                  This one doesn't break the engine, but it does completely subvert the graphics system. It's a visual novel that uses parallaxes instead of tiled maps. It is essentially a web of text choices using the engine's basic. There are twelve possible endings. Pretty sure all of the bugs are out of the current version, although, with 12 endings, it's possible there are still a couple of bugs lurking that I didn't catch. I'm rather proud of this one. It's my first serious attempt at real pixel art.

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                  Little Bo Peep has lost her sheep and has hired a PI to find them.

                  Mechanima
                  This is an RPG, and it doesn't LOOK like it breaks the system, but it totally does. Almost everything the battle system does, VX Ace is totally incapable of without heavy scripting. This was another team game. I never would have even imagined this battle system without out my teammates. Encounters are a bit too heavy, and because of that, it's not my favorite game, but it's my favorite story, and...I drew for this game more than for any other game I've ever made and I never want to do that much art in that short of time ever again. Music is mostly from music packs, but there are a couple in there by me.

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                  This isn't a spoiler since you find out at the opening, but Girl is an android.


                  Shackled Seas
                  This was a for a game jam called Swap in the Middle With 2. Obviously, as the title suggests, this is the second jam to use this premise. All members make half a game, and then we swap and make the second half of someone else's game. Shackled Seas actually ended up giving me an interesting pirate story to work with and it had ship-to-ship combat with a completely custom made combat system for these ships! I'm like, wow Fomar! You only had a month to make half a game! Did you script the whole thing? Yes, yes he did, and I had to figure out how to apply it all to the rest of the game because these were all custom scripts made especially for this game, and it's true I know C#, but I only know the C languages, and VX Ace requires Ruby. As you can imagine, Ruby is not a C language. Fortunately, it was pretty easy to figure out. He wrote a little guide for me and I saw that, okay, for this particular script effect, I just need to add a line here, add the map ID here, and this, that, or the other. Same for the ship combat. I just had to figure out when I wanted it to happen and which characters I wanted involved. This was a fun game to make, overall, except he hardcoded all the combat backgrounds, and I can't figure out why since it basically did the same thing the normal VX Ace system does. Graphics are First Seed Materials/REFMAP/Mack & Blu. Again, music is mine. I might have gotten drunk making this one night and sang the boss battle music for the main bad guy. I am neither confirming or denying that (I'll sure never do it again!).

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                  The Vindicators
                  Speaking of Swap in the Middle With 2, Vindicators is the game I made for my first half. This sticks pretty strictly to the base RPG Maker 2003 system so no engine breakage here, though LavenderSiren, who made the second half, might have done a few event bending things that kind of put the engine through its paces, but not seriously. Vindicators is basically a spoof of the old British 60s Avengers show. Graphics are White Screw and music is by Kevin MacLeod at incompetech.com (What? I don't ALWAYS make my own assets! I made the title screen, so there's that!). The quirk of this game is that the combat, which is turn-based, is accompanied by witty banter between the protagonists in sort of a tete-a-tete. I'm afraid poor Lavender couldn't quite keep up with the snappy repartee and after about two battles that she created, she started using fourth wall breaks and self-deprecating humor. The story she told was hilarious, though!

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                  Vega Legacy
                  This game is in an incomplete state, but it has a story that I really enjoyed writing. The graphics are White Screw again, though there's artwork by me. This game uses an on-screen combat system. It isn't complete. Right now, you just bash monsters, but eventually, you'll get experience and levels from it as my intent was to build a battle system from scratch, completely bypassing the existing battle system in RPG Maker 2003. Music is, again, by me.

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                  So, these are several of mine that I've made that I pretty well favor over all of the others, though if you look through my games list, you'll find more, like The House of Gwendolyn or Dream of Jade. I hope you enjoy them if you choose to play any of them.

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                  • #12
                    It depends on what you mean by a "scam." If you think you'll be able to snap your fingers and have your game stand out from the other RPG Maker games, then you could call it that. RPG Maker takes a lot of work if you want it to look good, especially if you're doing to go with custom tiles, sprites, etc. What I would say is this: if you're more art-oriented and just want to make a good game without knowing a lot of programming, then it's an excellent choice, especially for a first game, or first few games, and would be a LOT less work than programming everything yourself. You won't be able to sell your first few games, but eventually you should have something worth selling, if that's your goal. RPG Maker is rather powerful and there's a lot that you can do with it, but, while it's easy to make a quick trash game, it's a lot more work to make it actually look good and stand out as a game -- this is especially the case given that people tend to avoid purchasing RPG Maker games due to how generic they often are. I'd recommend just getting the software by itself and wouldn't bother much with the sprites and extra tileset DLC. There are lots of them that people make for free online and, once again, you'll want to make your own for your game to make it stand out more anyways, so buying their DLC wouldn't help much. If you're not very good with artwork and can't write music, though, it might be helpful, but you can still find a lot of free resources online already. There are quite a few limitations on RPG Maker, however, so depending on how advanced you want things to be, you may or may not be able to do them very easily, if at all.

                    What you can do, if you're still on the fence on it, is wait until a steam sale and just pick up RPG Maker 2003, which is considerably cheaper than MV. They're each pretty similar to each other, but the newer ones, of course, have a lot of additional features to speed up the process considerably. You'll at least get a chance to see what the layout is like and how the interface works before spending more money on something like MV.

                    tl;dr
                    Is RPG Maker a scam? No. Are the DLC a waste of money? If you want to actually make a decent game that doesn't look like every other RPG Maker game, then yes.

                    P.S. An additional option is to just use WOLF RPG Editor, instead, which is a free resource. It's a Japanese software, but there are some English translations of much of the utilities. It is aimed at more advanced users, however, so keep that in mind. It's free, though, so if you're most concerned about cash, you could try it out first. For reference, WOLF RPG Editor is the software used by most of the JRPG's you find on DLSite.com.
                    Last edited by mangaka92; 05-18-2019, 12:06 AM.

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