Either of the 'of Sorrow' Castlevanias, can't choose one over the other, the soul system and weapon variety kicks it up a notch above the others IMO.
ViciousReiven's forum posts
Depends on the crafting system really, a few games have actually made it balanced in terms of the amount of time it takes versus the item you get out of it, but often I find it's either requires too much time (item drop grinding) to be fun, or is too simple (you pick up the components everywhere all the time, and you just have to hit a button to make it) to be of any value.
Alchemy for potions is a cool idea that I never use, apparently you can make some wicked potions and become a god for awhile in certain RPGs but I'd rather become badass through equipment.
Weapon systems are usually the pits because you might have fairly unique sword effects but it looks like the same old steel you'd find anywhere, I'd rather find an awesome named item in a difficult dungeon with a menacing appearance than carry around a normal longsword that has a high chance to bleed or whatever.
Excuse me if I sound bitter at this, I kind of am but I don't mean this to be mean spirited I'm actually enjoying this dialog, so let me break it down the way I feel about it.
I think you're idea of a basic understanding and mine may differ, I see it as a player should probably know a sword is a weapon, an antidote (if they call it that) is to heal poison and stuff along those lines, even the most basic of older RPGs had item descriptions, but I don't think that level of understanding should apply to mechanics or unique items, that's where the obtuseness should be.
The learning part to me should be either through complete experimentation or a fan knowledge base, like a forum or wiki dedicated to figuring that stuff out, not by the game itself telling you.
As for expectations, you have it kinda backwards there, the problem is I didn't appreciate it at first because of my experience with KF, it was an initial level of excitement that quickly drained due to how much more open and player friendly Demon's Souls was compared to KF, I soon found myself able to bring it back when I realized it wasn't all that far removed and did have a level of mystery underneath the surface, not the same but good, I didn't get the same thing I got from KF, being thrust into the unknown, which is still what I'm looking for and wish this series would be, but instead each game dulls that part more, except for Bloodborne which is an odd mish-mash of thing's from each of the games instead of a distillation the rest of the games had from entry to entry.
If you don't see how things could impact different types of players then I guess it depends on what you're really asking to add/change, if it's just pure tutorials then yeah the only thing that'd really change is returning players having to go through it if it isn't optional, but to me it changes the spirit of the game, which I admit isn't something that's easily quantified you just know it when you see it, and maybe you disagree with what that spirit is.
In the end I'm frustrated with the idea that other's frustrations of the games are some of the parts that I find fascinating and engaging, and that their frustrations are addressed while my specific ideals don't get manifested in modern games very often, and when they do they're quick to disappear.
@thatpinguino: I really don't feel they should teach anything at all other than what the buttons on your controller do, back in the day that was usually reserved for the manual along with the basic outline of your quest.
I say this as someone who adored King's Field, From's previous franchise, for this very same sentiment, it didn't teach you anything whatsoever, after the small intro you were tossed into a world with practically nothing, and no idea where to go or what to expect, there weren't any NPCs nearby to learn anything from, there was no central hub to return to, if you didn't have the manual you didn't even know the goal, and once you died you had to restart the game because the first save point is a bout an hour in.
When Demon's Souls was coming out it was one of my most anticipated titles of that year, after hearing about it's weirdness and rumors from people who imported the already fully English Asia version the year before.
At first I was still kinda unhappy about some of the modernization, the autosaving, the ability to 'recover' souls, the central hub of the nexus leading to segmented areas of game, the leave a message system, but for that game it worked, it still had mystery, it still had sensibilities to it from an era gone by, you wouldn't know how to do so much unless you put things together yourself or someone else told you, weather it be items, simple mechanics like types of attacks, bigger integrated mechanics like how to upgrade equipment or obtain magic, it was glorious.
But ever since then they've gotten farther away from that feeling, and it's not just because of expectation, yeah we know there's going to be similarities and that's fine, you may know the basics of how to attack and defend, or a general idea of what some mechanics are going to do, but for the most part you have a new world, with new enemies, a new goal, and thus a new mysetry to unravel...
Except not really, now you have detailed item descriptions, more NPCs to deliver exposition, checkpoint after checkpoint and plenty of shortcuts to get back to them and later the ability to get anywhere you need to go really fast, an infinitely refillable health potion so you don't have to be as careful, you no longer have to make every one count.
Demon's Souls took a chance at bringing back a type of game to a modern market, it was niche and it hit the mark, it was never going to be for everyone and that's OK it never needed to be, but now as the games give the player more and more things to make it less 'frustrating' to the larger and larger growing fan-base the more it takes away from what I feel made me a fan in the first place, and there's little out there to replace that, which is a shame because of how good they are at making those games, at making those mechanics and worlds.
Is it their duty to appease everyone now? Maybe I'm just too stubborn, I don't know.
The only 'accessibility problem' is that they're accessible at all, they should of not had any tutorials or niceties and stuck to it's old school roots, maintained the mystery, but instead they get progressively dumbed down with every installment and lose it's very essence, if it wasn't for strong world building and mechanics I'd have been done with them after DS1.
I'm actually watching an LP of FF2 right now, the story content seems pretty good, but the stat system just looks atrocious, I could easily see someone being massively over or under powered depending on playstyle and knowledge, and it doesn't lend itself well to experimentation you kinda need to know how it works.
Mainly because I feel it unbalances the fights, anyone can just walk up and wail on a boss while the other draws aggro, taking away any challenge it would of had, the AI just isn't up for facing multiple people.
If it had better AI and the bosses stats scaled accordingly to the number of players then I'd feel okay about it.