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Coming Soon: Brave New World 2.0

179 posts in this topic

2 hours ago, Reiker said:

Maybe at some point it might be worth branching off a "normal" version of BNW and a "hard" version of BNW. I realize that there's a hard mode mod for BNW already, but "enemies have doubled speed" just isn't a very interesting difficulty mechanic vs. different scripting.

Hopefully this isn't something that's just out of the ballpark of what bnb&co are willing to do at some point. I'd be the first in line lobbing for a hard difficulty here, precisely because it's such a good mod and those are the ones where you really want to push it to the limit, as it were. Not to bash on the mod you mentioned but BNW could probably stand to have a hard more with just a tad more consideration and planning put into it than doubling enemy stats. 

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Pac Man is a great game to this day because you can play it several ways. You can play for score, leading the ghosts into the corners so you can eat them all with one power pellet. You can play for progress, ignoring the ghosts and focus on clearing the table. You can self impose challenges like stop moving after eating a power pellet so you don’t get the bonus points and extra lives. 

An RPG is boring if there’s one way to play it. If there’s really only one optimal build and anything else is wasting your time. BNW is very successful at this with the Esper system. Bosses are where this can come to roost, though. If there’s only one solution to the boss, it’s a bad boss. 

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pac man sucks

Edited by Reiker
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The problem is: how do you make stuff harder in a jrpg?  

More damage?  This means more ohko stuff and party wipes that are entirely rng and unmitigateable. Or if they are mitigateanle, it forces the player into a “do this or you can’t proceed” situation. 

More hp?  As has been mentioned, more hp doesn’t necessarily make harder. It also wastes the players time once they figure out the gimmick. 

More speed is at least a little interesting as it punishes bad decisions without completely upending the balance. It’s not perfect though.

The best way is probably via dynamic AI scripting, but it’s a fine line to toe.

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12 hours ago, Mishrak said:

The best way is probably via dynamic AI scripting, but it’s a fine line to toe.

This is what I'm shooting for with Kaiser :P

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Daymn... Kaiser seems like the most appropriate choice here; secretly hoping to see him elevated to superboss levels as he originally was probably meant to be in FF6. I feel like BNW has room to have one superboss that you really have to work to beat.

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I greatly dislike the concept of a superboss, because the unspoken implication is that you have one boss in a game that's interesting and worth fighting, while everything else is boring garbage that is made even easier after the "optional" superboss has been defeated. That's not really how I roll.

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I picked up a the 1.9.0 version of this and absolutely love what you have done! I hope I can provide some good insight on how my personal experience (and possibly others) can be improved.

  • Please keep translations as faithful, clean, and new player friendly as possible.
    • This is the kind of game I use to teach my nephews to read. A good clean translation makes that job easier. Aside from that your translation work is spot on! Great job! I'm constantly roaring with laughter on my end. Clean New World for the win! (Guess that makes me a coward :P)
  • Some Notes on Difficulty
    • Some wonderful things have been done to improve monster and character diversity. Superb job! I want each character to feel useful and important. That being said, I don't enjoy the death count it is taking me to learn new things (not to mention the RNG deaths). Here are a couple thoughts on how to make the experience less painful for a new player like me.
      • Limit how often you make a mob completely invincible to certain damage types. Instead make them resistant to half or quarter the amount of damage. Monsters should generally (only) be invincible to a damage type if it is at least somewhat visibly apparent to help prepare the player instead of punishing them for something they couldn't possibly have known.
      • Sometimes it is still fun to brute force a fight even if it isn't the best option. I don't want to take away from your diversity but I do want to encourage that sense of awesomeness that one feels in doing a difficult thing, as I did in FFX when I was first able to use Tidus to kill Flans.
      • Mobs that are invincible (though admittedly sometimes necessary) are not fun. And I would extend this to elemental immunities. Every little bit of damage helps and it is much nicer to say in our minds "Ah! He has resistances to fire!" instead of "Well, those spell points went for nothing."
    • Party Wipes are not fun and death by RNG should be done away with as much as possible. I was only able to get a couple hours into the game before I just had to take a break. I couldn't level/grind at all (probably purposeful) because every two to three encounters I was getting wiped and often it was completely unpreventable.
      • I recommend making mobs have 25-33% of their main damage type. If I make a mistake I want to say "Ouch, that hurt!" And then crawl back to town and buy more dried meat. Often I found myself saying, "Whelp, gotta save again cause I'm probably going to die next encounter." (Saving every encounter is not that fun) or  while going through a dungeon, "Darn! Lost everything from those last three encounters and I have to start the whole cave over!" Players want to feel rewarded for their time and effort. Even if it is just a little bit. Having it all taken away over and over again is kind of punishing.
      • Make the player hurt! Make the player work hard! Make the player try new things or suffer pain! These are all challenges to the player and encourage him/her to be better. But try not to make the player feel robbed or cheated out of their time and that their "work" was for nothing.

I hope you take this bit if criticism as well as possible. These are the only things that I can see that seem to be holding me back from having the enjoyable experience I believe you guys want me to have. It really is a great job you are doing and I am finding this version MUCH more fun than that of the original game.

You are my heroes. Definitely sharing this with my oldschool friends. Thank you for all your hard work!

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“Invincible enemies”

Everything has a weakness.  There aren’t any invincible enemies outside of scripted events.

“Completely unpreventable”

I have a hard time believing that to be the case. I don’t know your playstyle but almost everything can be mitigated even if only a little bit. 

“Party wipes and death by RNG”

I’m not sure what you mean by death by rng. If you mean occasionally enemies doing a different attack you didn’t expect (condors are a nice culprit), then observe the enemy and see if you can do something to stop it. In the case of condors you need to kill them quickly.  

True party wipes are pretty rare. One big potential is Flare Star but only Atma uses this.  Make sure you’re paying attention to what row characters are in. 

A lot of this is changing for 2.0 but a lot of what you’re listing as criticism I think is actually just you misunderstanding what’s actually happening in the game. 

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On 1/17/2019 at 7:02 PM, RogueYun said:

*Snip*

Glad you're enjoying everything!

So, first of all... most everything you said about difficulty are things that I've already been thinking and the next update addresses it. The game's code doesn't allow enemies to take only half damage from elements - it's all or nothing, but I cut WAY back on the elemental immunities that made little sense and/or felt tacked on.

The translation, well... I guess a lot of it comes down to what we were trying to do. I can't in good faith say that our goal was to make a more faithful version of the original Japanese, because we didn't We went in a different direction with a lot of things, and it's totally okay if that's not what you're after. Most Players will point immediately to the humor for this, but take for example the scene when you're re-recruiting Setzer. In the original Japanese, it's really just kind of... bland. Brave New World makes Setzer very depressed and very much an asshole, and I had a lot of fun writing that scene.

A lot of people assume that Clean New World was written out of spite, when in fact the opposite is actually true. I wrote Clean New World as a personal "thank you" to our own @thzfunnymzn so that he could play the game with his sister. What *would* have been done out of spite - and why I never did it - was the "vanilla" translation that Deschain did for us that will be included in 2.0. I personally have a distaste for it, but appreciate the intent behind its creation and the effort that went into it.

Anyway, that's my take on it. Thanks again for playing and taking the time to write in your thoughts.

Edited by BTB
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You want the player to have to work hard and hurt as you say but party wipes are too much? What's the other option here then, I wonder - not dying or wiping to new things you weren't prepared for seems like the opposite of having to work hard. RNG also seems like a weird way to describe that. Rather, you were just insufficiently prepared. I do agree on the elemental immunity point, though; too bad the game's code is limiting in that respect.

I had a massively different experience going into this the first time. I had enough faith in the developers to assume the challenge is fair so there's always ways around everything if you're willing to pay attention and try different things. Calling RNG and unfair difficulty is a misguided way to react to dying.

Edited by Hapanpappa
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RNG fuckery does still exist in Brave New World as it is. We've been trying to phase it out, but it's a difficult thing to do mainly for the reasons that Mishrak brought up.

A "true" RNG death is when absolutely nothing you could have done would have prevented it - the cranes are a pretty good example of this and a very good example of why I decided to trash the "back attack" damage bonus for pincer attacks in 2.0. The wrong sequence of enemy attacks in a pincer situation can kill any party that isn't overleveled or over-armored, which leads us to the tricky part of the argument. It's not *completely* unavoidable in the technical sense, but it's practically unavoidable through anything other than grinding or luck. These are the situations that we are seeking to eliminate.

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The only time I experienced a wipe, that seemed RNG is when Final Kefka throw me 2 Goners back to back, didn't have the time to heal between the 2 (despite being in Haste), this has happened only once tough so I don't know if I did something wrong that triggers it, and even then the wipe could have been avoid with Reraise but I don't like using Reraise ^^".

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Goner is used exclusively as a counter-attack, so yes you definitely triggered it.

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Cranes is one of those fights that’s a little unfair if you’re not prepared for it ahead of time. Which a blind player won’t be obviously.  It is fairly easy to mitigate the damage if you are prepared but the back attack damage bonus going away will help a lot. 

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I didn't have trouble with the Cranes the first time, I say first time going blind I had more trouble with Number 128 as because of Celes leaving I didn't have any healer, and barely any items and of course I didn't know his weakness, and it was 1.6 so cover was less good.

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7 hours ago, Nesouk said:

What trigger Goner ?

Anything does. Kefka's counter script occurs in "phases" rather than being specific to attack types.

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Really excited to play this mod again! I think the last version I played was 1.6 but I lost my save before I could finish it.

I'm definitely going to wait for 2.0, but do you know when it'll be ready more or less? Days, weeks, months? A beta is fine too.

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As a beta looms nearer, I'm going to supplement my list of things to look for with a few things I want specific feedback on.

__ Random encounters and enemy behavior (obviously), as well as boss fights (double obviously)
__ Hints about beating bosses from NPC - did you notice any? Did you TAKE that advice?
__ Watch out for erroneous "EP gain" messages that appear after the Battle of Narshe, but before you get espers: we need save data to examine this bug
__ Play with Setzer's Dice; does the damage suck? Do we need to fuck with the odds any?
__ Give us a few basic level benchmarks, specifically for the FC and the end of the game. I'm curious to see how often players will overlevel without deliberately grinding

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On the topic of Final Kefka, I had one fight (in 1.9) in which he just... never used Goner at all.  That just feels weird.  I like the random counter aspect, as it's scary and chaotic like the horrible man himself, but maybe there could be a guaranteed cast at some HP threshold so the player always sees / has to deal with it?

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The odds of Goner never showing up at all are ludicrously low, actually.

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Things I am most looking forward to in 2.0 (Which btw I totally called the name of which)

 

 • Repurposed the Auction House in Jidoor as an "Advanced" Beginner's School - Very small change but I like imagining my friends playing BNW for the first time and NOT getting overwhelmed by the Beginner's School right off the bat. (especially since the mod doesn't come into it's own and distinguish itself heavily from Vanilla till Mt. Koltz imo)

• Completely rewrote enemy AI with a heavy focus on more predictable behavior in random encounters that
   should be easier to exploit and more interesting/dynamic boss battles - I can only talk about this one so much despite the details given because I can't tell EXACTLY how this will change the flow of the game until I actually play it but this sounds like the most exciting change so far. I have always preferred difficulty to come from planning and improvising as opposed to stat buffs. VERY excited for this change.

• Added a minimum number of steps between battles, slightly lowering the overall rate  - This is potentially fantastic. I just hope the change is noticeable. If at all possible, I will try and lower it even further. I need my walking simulator.

 • The "rflect" status now behaves like "image" instead of being on a timer - I hate Reflect in all games. This gives me a viable reason to use it.

 • Updated the "Status Display" hack to include "cycling" auras and be more intuitive  - I was comfortable with how it was in 1.9 but this sounds pretty lit.

Everything else is incredibly minor but there is so much of it that I feel it will really change how the game plays so I am bundling it all into one.

I guess I am really just excited about everything and this post was practically pointless. Oh well.

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