Various aspects of RPG's that I hate...

Well I have been watching through the Persona 4 Endurance run because it is summer time, and with my recent accident, I have a lot of time in which I need to rest up. With that I have noticed somethings about RPG's and have been thinking about RPG's (currently playing through Chaos Rings on the iPod)  and there have been various aspects of the genre that have arisen that frustrate me and things that I dislike about the genre in general. This is not furious monologue coming from some one who has never touched an RPG, in my lifetime the majority of the games that have I have played have been RPG's. I have played through the Rockman EXE series (Megaman Battle Network), various Final Fantasy Tactics games, golden sun games and the list continues. And so to start of a new blog entry here is my... 

   List of aspects in RPG's that I hate.  

  • Attacks that never work against Bosses:   Now this list isn't in any particular order but the first aspect is pretty darn annoying. One example of this is confusion spells, they will work against normal enemies but as soon as you get to a boss the attack never works. I can kind of understand why this would be implemented by developers because it could make some bosses easy if they didn't have anything to guard against it, but there are other ways around it. How about after they are confused the boss has code written in that after he is confused he uses a spell that will guard against confusion for a period of time. Something needs to be set in place that makes it some a certain part of the game isn't rendered completely useless and void.
  •  This battle shouldn't be so long...
      Ridiculously long boss battles: This is coming after watching a very long battle against Teddie's "alter ego" and a battle that took about an hour. Eventually you reach a point where the tactics are repeated over and over again to a disgusting point. Now I am not saying all battles should be 2 minutes long, but as the battled reach an hour that is a very long time to be sitting in a single place using the same attacks again and again. Battles should be refreshing and new, and shouldn't dull your mind, they should keep you on the edge of your seat but not last so long that the bottom of your butt begins to flatten out.     
  •     
          Level curves shouldn't be crazy
       Insane level curves: I encountered this aspect when I was playing through a later dungeon in Zenonia. I eventually found after trying to progress that there was about a 20 level difference between the first room of the dungeon and, as far as I can tell, close to the end of the dungeon. That paired with a low pace of leveling and incredibly boring enemy types it made the game almost unplayable. To this day I haven't passed that section have no yearning to return to that world or that game. Now, I am okay with a certain amount of grinding, and the feeling of relief and power that comes with it as you reach the next dungeon overpowered a certain amount.
  • Repetitive monster types: I hate seeing some monster in the early game, and having them show up, just differently colored in the later game. I feel like it is lazy on the side of the developers and the designers. Yes, I do understand that other character models take up extra space, and designing new attacks,characters and animations takes a good amount of time, but recolored characters bring the quality of the product down. there is no excitement in fighting a recolored enemy from earlier in the game, it is just boring and lengthens the game in an unnecessary way. One interesting part of RPG's is seeing new attacks as the game progresses and seeing the new animations that come with it, recoloring sprites or models decreases that interest.
  • Certain types of Backtracking: One type of backtracking that I do not like is the type in which you head back to an earlier town and nothing in the town changes and the monsters in that area are pushovers and barely help you level up and increase in power. If I head back to an earlier town I want to see something new, something worth heading back for, and I also want it so that I don't have to painfully work my way through battles that are going to do seemingly nothing for me. I understand that that is a lot of requests but again that is unnecessary lengthening of the game.
 

Well that is more or less all that I want to say for right now, I am sure there is a lot of aspects of the genre that are frustrating as a whole and I want to know what you guys think. What do you like and dislike about the RPG Genre? One thing that I am waiting to come is one incredible RPG that changes the genre and doesn't stick to the RPG conventions. It would be something like that, which would invigorate a good portion of the Japanese Games developing community and change the perception of the drama. Hopefully a game like that can come along soon.

23 Comments
23 Comments
Posted by MisterMouse

Well I have been watching through the Persona 4 Endurance run because it is summer time, and with my recent accident, I have a lot of time in which I need to rest up. With that I have noticed somethings about RPG's and have been thinking about RPG's (currently playing through Chaos Rings on the iPod)  and there have been various aspects of the genre that have arisen that frustrate me and things that I dislike about the genre in general. This is not furious monologue coming from some one who has never touched an RPG, in my lifetime the majority of the games that have I have played have been RPG's. I have played through the Rockman EXE series (Megaman Battle Network), various Final Fantasy Tactics games, golden sun games and the list continues. And so to start of a new blog entry here is my... 

   List of aspects in RPG's that I hate.  

  • Attacks that never work against Bosses:   Now this list isn't in any particular order but the first aspect is pretty darn annoying. One example of this is confusion spells, they will work against normal enemies but as soon as you get to a boss the attack never works. I can kind of understand why this would be implemented by developers because it could make some bosses easy if they didn't have anything to guard against it, but there are other ways around it. How about after they are confused the boss has code written in that after he is confused he uses a spell that will guard against confusion for a period of time. Something needs to be set in place that makes it some a certain part of the game isn't rendered completely useless and void.
  •  This battle shouldn't be so long...
      Ridiculously long boss battles: This is coming after watching a very long battle against Teddie's "alter ego" and a battle that took about an hour. Eventually you reach a point where the tactics are repeated over and over again to a disgusting point. Now I am not saying all battles should be 2 minutes long, but as the battled reach an hour that is a very long time to be sitting in a single place using the same attacks again and again. Battles should be refreshing and new, and shouldn't dull your mind, they should keep you on the edge of your seat but not last so long that the bottom of your butt begins to flatten out.     
  •     
          Level curves shouldn't be crazy
       Insane level curves: I encountered this aspect when I was playing through a later dungeon in Zenonia. I eventually found after trying to progress that there was about a 20 level difference between the first room of the dungeon and, as far as I can tell, close to the end of the dungeon. That paired with a low pace of leveling and incredibly boring enemy types it made the game almost unplayable. To this day I haven't passed that section have no yearning to return to that world or that game. Now, I am okay with a certain amount of grinding, and the feeling of relief and power that comes with it as you reach the next dungeon overpowered a certain amount.
  • Repetitive monster types: I hate seeing some monster in the early game, and having them show up, just differently colored in the later game. I feel like it is lazy on the side of the developers and the designers. Yes, I do understand that other character models take up extra space, and designing new attacks,characters and animations takes a good amount of time, but recolored characters bring the quality of the product down. there is no excitement in fighting a recolored enemy from earlier in the game, it is just boring and lengthens the game in an unnecessary way. One interesting part of RPG's is seeing new attacks as the game progresses and seeing the new animations that come with it, recoloring sprites or models decreases that interest.
  • Certain types of Backtracking: One type of backtracking that I do not like is the type in which you head back to an earlier town and nothing in the town changes and the monsters in that area are pushovers and barely help you level up and increase in power. If I head back to an earlier town I want to see something new, something worth heading back for, and I also want it so that I don't have to painfully work my way through battles that are going to do seemingly nothing for me. I understand that that is a lot of requests but again that is unnecessary lengthening of the game.
 

Well that is more or less all that I want to say for right now, I am sure there is a lot of aspects of the genre that are frustrating as a whole and I want to know what you guys think. What do you like and dislike about the RPG Genre? One thing that I am waiting to come is one incredible RPG that changes the genre and doesn't stick to the RPG conventions. It would be something like that, which would invigorate a good portion of the Japanese Games developing community and change the perception of the drama. Hopefully a game like that can come along soon.

Posted by KaosAngel

...what about dudes who look like chicks?

Posted by MisterMouse
@KaosAngel: Hmm that is a good one
Posted by SpiralStairs

I don't mind any of the stuff you posted, the only thing that I still hate are random battles. Grinding, Repetition, etc. I'm fine with, but random battles just annoy me way too much.
But JRPG's are still my favorite type of games.

Posted by MisterMouse
@SpiralStairs: Haha that is interesting because I am completely fine with the random encounters haha oh well. Different strokes for different folks!
Posted by gla55jAw

I'd add Save Points. What happens when I run out of time and have to leave and I'm in the middle of some dungeon or mountain and there is no save point in site. Now I have to replay the last 30 minutes the next time I turn the game on. Lame. Learn something from some portable RPGs. Save anytime by going into the menu.

Posted by MisterMouse
@gla55jAw: That is an interesting point, but on the reverse of that some people like to have multiple save points and it would be difficult to have multiple save points to have an autosave. I can one option one be to have a save option in the pause menu or something like that. And yeah I agree completely that it is frustrating if you are half-way through something and then have to re do it all because you weren't able to save at a time
Posted by Video_Game_King
@KaosAngel said:
" ...what about dudes who look like chicks? "
Better than chicks who look like dudes.
Edited by Cornman89

Attacks that never work on bosses...yeah, that's just about the most infuriating thing ever. It's like, random enemies don't last long enough to justify casting a status effect on them, but when it's actually a sound combat strategy, it never works.
 
If I had to put one thing at the top of my list, I would say it's cheap platitudes. I hate it when games moralize at me.

Posted by gla55jAw
@pyromaster222 said:
" @gla55jAw: That is an interesting point, but on the reverse of that some people like to have multiple save points and it would be difficult to have multiple save points to have an autosave. I can one option one be to have a save option in the pause menu or something like that. And yeah I agree completely that it is frustrating if you are half-way through something and then have to re do it all because you weren't able to save at a time "
I would be totally be against an autosave. That is different. I just beat a boss in a game I'm playing right now (Crimson Gem Saga) that I was actually supposed to lose to, but only beat him because I was over-leveled. I reloaded my save and lost to him and found that I would have missed about a half hour of gameplay and missed out on a few new weapons. And If there was an autosave I would be shit out of luck.

But back to the save anywhere option. Like you said a save option in the pause menu that gives you multiple slots is what I'm talking about.  When I put in Crimson Gem Saga on my PSP  I was shocked that I was given this very option the first time I went into the menu. 
 
And as for multiple game saves, I usually carry just 1 anyways, except I always save a separate slot for the very last save before the final boss so I can fight it and see the ending whenever I want.
Posted by MisterMouse
@gla55jAw: Yeah I normally do the same thing with the saves, it is rare that I will have multiple saves unless I know that a huge choice is coming up or if I feel I might be overwhelmed a bit later and should spend some time leveling up a bit earlier. And that is very interesting that you are supposed to lose to that monster and yet you can beat him as well. Kind of cool I guess.
Posted by chubisaur

Personally, I hate auto save! I know Uncharted isn't an RPG, but when I was playing through it trying to get all the stupid treasures, I realized I missed one, and couldn't go back because the game had already saved it itself! So the only way I can get it is by playing through the game a fourth time -_- 
 
Now when it comes to boss battles in JRPGs, I hate that they can use "Death". I think it's the cheapest spell ever. It's like.. well you're probably gonna end up beating me, soooo I'm just gonna kill you immediately! Ha! And there's nothing you can do about it! This is something that really pissed me off in FFXIII. Grrr.

Posted by gla55jAw
@pyromaster222 said:
" @gla55jAw: Yeah I normally do the same thing with the saves, it is rare that I will have multiple saves unless I know that a huge choice is coming up or if I feel I might be overwhelmed a bit later and should spend some time leveling up a bit earlier. And that is very interesting that you are supposed to lose to that monster and yet you can beat him as well. Kind of cool I guess. "
It is kinda cool.
 
But your blog has brought a lot of things to question. Not really something I hate, since it make sense gamewise, but not story wise. But what about how every new town you make it to has more expensive items and an inn that costs more stay at? You start a game paying 20x to stay at the inn and near the end you're paying 2000x.
 
And why do monsters walk around with money that they drop? The only game that made sense of this that I can think of was FInal Fantasy VIII which gave you a deposit in your bank every certain amount of time since you were employed. And you can take tests to increase your salary.
Posted by MisterMouse
@gla55jAw: Yeah those are interesting, I mean gameplay wise I understand the reasoning behind that, but realistically it doesn't make sense. I mean one aspect of that could be that the weapons and armor are stronger and thus harder to make, or use more expensive materials but that is kind of weird at sometimes that it wont be at one big town, but it will be at the other. 
 
Yeah money on enemies is weird, I could image you get like claws or fur and such from the enemies and you can, in turn, turn that into money or into items to make various weapons and armor. That would be one way of handling that. 
 
 Not a lot of direction in this game.
I thought of another thing that annoys me about some RPG's is if they don't tell you what you have to do, or where to go. One game that I know had this problem was Final Fantasy 1. I was working through that and eventually I had no idea what to do. I thought I had completely cleared this one dungeon, but I could not  progress any further. It was kind of a weird time where I wasn't sure what to do and I was just kind of aimlessly wandering. I eventually lost interest in the game and stopped playing it. I think this downfall is more present in older RPG's. Not as prevalent in newer RPG's.
Posted by Ujio

#1 is definitely a pet peeve of mine. It's like why the hell have those spells in the game to begin with if you can't use them against the only enemies worth using them on?! Seriously, it's such a waste to bother with spells against bosses and all it is successful in doing is taking up a valuable turn you could've used instead to physically attack. I guess that's one reason that I like Persona 4 because those types of spells actually work on bosses! Imagine that! Your second point is also a good one. I appreciate a boss battle that takes some strategy, but dammit all, don't make it longer than 30 minutes tops otherwise it's just redundant. Good blog.

Posted by GreggD

All of these points are for JRPGs...not that it's a bad thing, I just anticipated something more broad than that.

Posted by MisterMouse
@Ujio: Thanks a bunch! and yes those spells that don't work on bosses are annoying, especially if you have a limited number of spots for specific spells. It is like why would you want a spell that wont work on the hardest bosses in the game in the limited amount of space is mind boggling, and completely kills the point of all of those skills. It is almost like they don't want you to carry those spells along with you.
Edited by MisterMouse
@GreggD: Well I have spent a lot more time on JRPG's than on western RPG's recently so I have more understanding on those area's and can right about it. If I find that I begin to play some more western RPG's I would definitely write another blog about problems in that sub-genre. Do you have any ideas for problems in western RPG's, because it is not like they lack problems?
Posted by GreggD
@pyromaster222: Well, in terms of Bethesda games, they are quite buggy. Other than that, there is little story in some of them, sometimes there is too much emphasis on aesthetics of your character, when it makes little to no difference, things like that. To be honest, there probably aren't as many points to make about WRPGs as there are JRPGs. I guess it all comes down to personal preference, but there are points to be made, regardless.
Posted by MisterMouse
@GreggD: I wonder if a game would ever be made where the aesthetics of your character would play into the gameplay, of course in that situation they would have to limit your choices one what your character could look like though.
Edited by iKANNIBAL

I can't stand JRPGS and ive tried to tolerate them before since the PS2 but i just cant, the gameplay mechanics, the over dramatic unrealistic characters just turns me off.
 
Bethesda's game's are usualy more about being "Open ended" than they are about "story" and Bethesda's games shouldn't be the defining games of the WRPG genre, there are a lot better developers than Bethesda......like Bioware for example D:

Posted by MisterMouse
@iKANNIBAL:  haha back to that bioware v bethesda thread. Alright besides games from those two companies what are some other games that define the WRPG genre?
Posted by iKANNIBAL
@pyromaster222:  
 
There are tons on PC.
 
But yea Bioware, Blizzard, Bethesda are currently the top, kinda like how Valve is the top at FPS. and i wasn't calling them bad just people always use Fallout 3 & Oblivion when arguing for WRPGS like they're the only ones. I ofcourse put Bioware at the top because of their stories and characters D: