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Best RPG Character Dev/Combat Syst.


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#1
Junkman

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I'm soon to re-enter the computer gaming world, having been relegated to a crappy PC for the last few years, and I'm now thinking about which games I want first. I'm definately getting both KOTOR games and NWN 1 with all the bells and whistles (only played the vanilla version). Also probably gonna get Guild Wars and Oblivian.
But anyway, this thread is only partially related to that. It's mostly to ask which games people think have the best systems for character development and combat. I basically mean the rules of the game, as separated from the plot, atmosphere and graphics. Plot and atmosphere are very important of course, but for me the character development has always been the most important component, and separates the bad from the good from the great.
So, what are people's thoughts? I'm thinking of more recent games mostly, but if you have some older ones that you think are particularly worth mentioning go ahead. And of course, please give a few reasons or a brief explanation along with your opinions.
Thanks
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#2
Titan8990

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If you have not tried it yet Fable is a good one to try. Real time combat like Zelda games with nice character leveling. It is fairly short though. Oblivion was one of my all time favorite but character building is something I felt that it lacked. You might not feel this way if you didn't play the Elder Scrolls III though. Morrowind offered a lot more skills. If you liked the original NWN the second one is well worth it. The story mode was nice and long and then there are plenty of mods to play online. Also KOTOR 2 was a big improvement on it's predecesor.


Edit: If you are in to dungeon crawlers then Titan Quest is a good game to grab. Has very nice visuals and lots of character options. Gameplay is of course simular to every dungeon crawler before it though.

Edited by Titan8990, 05 July 2007 - 02:35 PM.

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#3
stettybet0

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Diablo II. No question on the best RPG for PC ever. Extremely fun single player, and it only got better with the free multiplayer. And you can't go wrong with the expansion pack, either. :whistling:
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#4
Titan8990

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Diablo II. No question on the best RPG for PC ever. Extremely fun single player, and it only got better with the free multiplayer. And you can't go wrong with the expansion pack, either. :whistling:



Agreed, but I assumed just about everybody has already played the crap out of that game :blink:.
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#5
Junkman

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Yeah, I played a good bit of Diablo, including expansion. I thought the skills system was very good at first glance; I like that there are alot of skills and you can't choose them all. Also that the classes were actually very different. I think a good measure of how good an RPG system is is how many skills/powers/abilities you can't choose. i.e. the game forces you to make meaningful decisions that differentiate your character from others. Too many games look like they have a heap of options at first, but in the end they allow you to take everything, so that all characters end up pretty much the same. Diablo looked to have done a great job in this department, but after playing for a while I changed my mind, and I now think it did merely a good job. Too many of the skills were simply crap or redundant i.e. why take firebolt when you can take fireball? Or skills couldn't be used in combination. e.g. the paladin has 20 auras but you can only ever use one at a time... And of course the dungeon crawling did get kind of old, but there's not really much you can do about that. I long for the day when there are dungeon crawlers with such sophisticated random quest/plot elements that you can play them repeatedly and really feel like you're not doing the same thing over and over again. Please let it happen before I die!
Oblivian has no level-ups but merely builds your skills as you use them, right? I've encountered system that a few times before (most notably in Dungeon Siege, which I thought sucked) and personally I find it far too limiting. In Dungeon Siege for example you could basically choose to be a melee character, a ranged-attack character, a combat mage or a nature mage. Four choices, woohoo. Of course you could mix and match a little, but the game system was actually designed to discourage that.
I guess I'm rambling a little. Or a lot. I just woke up. Diablo still definately a good game. I don't mean to whine, just sharing my reasoning. I'll still probably try Oblivian. And I'll give Fable and Titan Quest a look too, thanks :whistling:
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#6
stettybet0

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Oblivion has one of the worst opponent systems in an RPG. The enemies scale in difficulty to your level. That means that the enemies really won't get that much more difficult as you go through the game.

And for its time, Diablo II was pretty good at "mixing it up". The levels were randomly generated, so although the quest might be the same, the terrain in which you traveled to complete the quest wouldn't. And using spells in combination was not only possible, it was key in Diablo II... at least in the later stages on <the hardest... it would be bleeped out if I said it...> difficulty. The auras for paladins could at least be quickly switched between (if you had the expansion), and the reason you couldn't combine them is that you could become too powerful. (ie. immune to both fire AND ice attacks) And sure, perhaps Blizzard could have been more creative in naming the spells, but I personally find it kind of cheesy if a spell is called "Fiery Bolt of Thurgor's Rage". Firebolt casted a bolt of fire, fireball casted a ball of fire. The names describe the spells. (Though this isn't always the case) And its not like they were the same spell, each had its own advantages.

Heh, sorry for rambling a bit also, but I had to defend my favorite RPG!
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#7
cuzant

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with oblivion though you can get mods to remove the level scaling (oscuros oblivion overhaul , martigens monster mod, Francescos leveled creatures I personally use OOO) and also some really good other mods like BTmod (changes menus) thieves arsenel (arrows from theif series really good fun) streamline (performance mod). The two good expansions (Shivering isles and knights of the nine). Also get a landscape lod replacer ( makes the distant land pretty) google .ini tweaks for it also so the game can run well.

Who said I'm addicted?

EDIT: as for leveling what happens is you pick 7 major skills (they will get a bonus) as you use these skills you get better at them.After 10 skill increases you will level up where depending on which skills you have leveled up ( major or minor) you can increase a attribute up to 5 pts ( eg you used blade skill which is govered by strength so you can level up strength say 3 pts)
You also get skill perks where for example once your blade skill is at 50 you can do a special attack which may disarm your opponent.

Also if you want character builds pm me and ill send you some.

Edited by cuzant, 07 July 2007 - 11:51 AM.

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#8
Junkman

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Well thanks for that extra info. on Oblivian, that does sound like a significant improvement over Dungeon Siege, and you've raised the chances of my playing it.
As for Diablo, I didn't mean to dump on your favourite game, and I apologise if you thought I was doing that :whistling: I agree it was a very good game in many ways, and I spenda good chunk of time playing it myself. My complaint with the "firebolt/fireball" line was not about the naming of the spells but the effects. Firebolt is a waste of time because fireball is simply more powerful, as well as hitting more opponents. And there are plenty of other examples of redundant skills like that in the game. In regards to the Paladin Auras, yes you're going to use more than one, and of course it would have been silly to let you use as many as you want at once. But the fact is there's going to be one or two that will be the best (for your character) and there will be little point in using any others except occasionally in special circumstances. And finally, while it was good that the terrain was random to a degree, personally I didn't find it enough to make me feel like I wasn't just repeating the same levels. Still, good game, I mean it! :blink: I guess I just sound picky cause I'm thinking of the areas in which future games could make improvements. Sadly the trend in RPGs seems to be heading in the opposite direction, to simplifying and removing choices and customisation. Actually, one of the best things about Diablo's system was that it was only as complex as you wanted it to be; if you aren't one of those (alright, one of us) geeks who love spending hours planning out the best possible character you can make, you can just play, and select your skills as you go without having to think too much. Yet on the other hand you could put quite a bit of thought into it...
One more thing just occurred to me that is just barely on topic. One reason I didn't play the game more is that it always screwed me when it came to melee characters fighting bosses. I could never hit them! Even when I did everything I could to raise my AR, and the character screen told me I should be hitting ole Diab's at least 70% of the time, the actual hit rate was well below 10%. Whenever I tried to play Assassin, Barbarian or Wolfman (I forget what he's called) I would always get my arse totally kicked by the bosses, especially The Man himself. This happened when I was playing the original or the expansion, and with or without patches, so either it was a very pervasive glitch, or there's something big I'm missing.
Rant Terminated.
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