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I mentioned before, but I'm planning for my latest RPG Maker project to be a first person dungeon crawl RPG. However, when I proposed this to some of my friends on plurk, I was met with opposition, many of them saying that first person for an RPG was "too hard", and that it was too easy to get lost in that style of game.

So I'd like to ask you guys which one is better: the first person RPG like the original Phantasy Star or Shin Megami Tensei, or the top down third person like nearly every other 2D RPG out there? Which do you prefer, and how you feel one could be unique over the other outside of the camera view?
Either is fine with me, as long as we get a map. Maps are essential in these types of games, such that the player doesn't get lost in repeating floor plans and rooms that look similar. But also as a way to keep track of where they've been, and where they need to go. Even if the map starts out blank initially, and fills as they go. Try to make the map as useful as possible, by at least showing where entrances/exits are when they've been discovered.
RPGs are usually incredibly dependent on the strength of its characters, and it's very difficult for me to get into a character who I can't see.
What if there were visual novel-style cutscenes where you could see them?
That or even just character portraits. I think people like having some kind of visual to go along with all the text. There's the super niche text-based video game group, but for the most part, seeing exactly who's what at least further helps the imagination fill in the gaps.
I think VN cutscenes could help... but you know...

I love Doom. What helped me get into Doom way more than I've been able to get into most other FPS games was the little facial indicator on the HUB that reacted to the events going on. I'm not saying you have to incorporate that element exactly as Doom did, but I think something similar could definitely help out.
Doom Guy face.

Quote:In Doom, furthermore, as a player's health drops, the status bar face becomes progressively bloodier. All the manuals state that the status bar face begins to look more like raw hamburger.

[Image: Doom_ouchface.png]
Looks just like a raw hamburger.

If you do something like that, it may end up being hilarious too, xD.
I think the question here is what you stand to benefit from first person. In third, you have a grander view. You can see chests behind doors. You know about that guy around the corner. Its hard to hide things without feeling cheap. It can be a lot more personal.

First person lets you hide things more easily, get a nice HUD for your character if it makes sense, get a nice close view of things.

I think first person lends itself well to dungeon crawlers assuming you can make the terrain notable. If every wall is just wall, I don't want that nice close view of things. Its just a wall like every other wall.
Thanks guys, this has been very helpful. From this, I think I'll go with the following:

* First person
* VN cutscenes
* Try to implement a HUD that will have both a mini map and a battle-like status indicator with character faces.

I think using the Lunar Engine, I should be able to achieve that last one without much issue and still have a seamless transition between overworld and battle... I hope. I hate Ruby.

If anyone has any additional input, feel free.
Well, do you have a setting of sorts in mind? You could justify a hud in the in-game if your character has say a "magic helmet" or a sci-fi power helmet. It doesn't even have to be a constant. You could have items that change a hud to make things more apparent, like a pair of shades that reveals doors or ghosts, etc.
A character-status hud that popped up with a button press would probably satisfy players like myself so long as the character icons (is there a party system?) were expressive and brimming with personality.

Edit: Looking at Star Fox for just a moment, which I understand is outside both RPG and FP parameters... but it's a game where you only see the characters in cutscenes and when they're speaking to one-another... but look just how popular those characters are, how many people get their nostalgia all tickled when Slippy's face pops onto the screen, how many people want a new game just to spend time with these characters. The games would be mere footnotes in the grand scheme of things were it not for those little transmissions with the character faces flapping around.

My point in talking about Star Fox isn't to reiterate that in-gameplay faces are required, but that even when the faces show up for only a moment they can have a huge impact on the way players relate to the game.
If I may make a suggestion, take a look at how the Madou Monogatari Series handles this.
f-fffff c-c'mon guys, it's RPG Maker I'm working with here, not my own--

...Okay, that's not fair to say. RPG Maker can do some impressive stuff. I'm just not that good with Ruby, so I'm really brought down by my limited understanding of how the language works together with VXA.

Right now I've been focused on hashing out the story, so I only have the "base" of the game to show. What I mean by that is what I got by cobbling the scripts together and forcing them to work with each other (the 3D dungeon script I had originally did not work with the resolution the menu/battle screen needed to use). So the map here will not be in the finished product, but it should give you an idea of what the game would feel like playing:

[Image: LatbGY3.png] [Image: mV15rwu.png]

The enemy there is just a placeholder (to test the battle and see how objects on the map would look). I'm not sure if I want roaming enemies, or if I want random encounters just yet.
So like Etrian Odyssey or Doom?
Probably will look more like Etrian, yeah. The... menu is Etrian inspired, hence the name of the project file that I need to eventually remember to change.
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