In response to Solomn Architect (#19)
Solomn Architect wrote:
However if you add fun quests that take you deep into treasure rich dungeons filled with epic boss monsters to battle, then you have a game that, no matter how easy it is to level in, is very fun for players and will keep them coming back for more.

That to me, is a chore. After some... twenty years of gaming, there is no dungeon I haven't already explored, no boss I haven't already defeated and no treasure I haven't already gained at least once before.

It's pretty much stock recipe for a great game, and I'm getting pretty bored by it myself. Seemingly: Gaming becomes a popular part of most peoples lives, so suddenly we find ourselves relooping over stuff again before we get to the new intuitive stuff (COD is like this generations Doom, BF3 is this generations Quake, if you get my drift).

Awesome fights, some end-game content, an interesting story, and a dash of skill is most of what it takes to make a fun and progressive game.

Yeah but, every game has that. That's what's starting to bother me. I can't focus on many RPGs any more due to stuff stated in the previous paragraph.

Perhaps I'm just too difficult to please. But I really want an RPG with something new and exciting.

Eternal_Memories wrote:
The thing is -> Games with Self Train / Punch Log / Train Pokemon are HORRIBLE.

In Pokemon you don't so much level your character, you level your weapons. And this was a fantastic and interesting concept that I adored as a child. And still do to this day.

Something about Pokemon set it aside from the stock RPG and made it more interesting. Going out grinding was less of a chore and more of a necessity to proceed through the game. And it was actually fun.

Sure, wandering through those tunnels became a chore 'cause there wasn't much in terms of variety (which I assume was fixed in later versions by releasing more Pokemon to catch. A gift and a curse for this franchise). But even then, investing in a repel potion removed the grinding aspect when you had a mission you just wanted to get done.

I think a game that makes grinding a necessary but still completely optional to take part in is a good idea. Although it'd ruin the A - B - Collect Reward concept. Unless they get more creative with it. Which I'm hoping.
In response to Tiberath (#20)
Tiberath wrote:
Solomn Architect wrote:
However if you add fun quests that take you deep into treasure rich dungeons filled with epic boss monsters to battle, then you have a game that, no matter how easy it is to level in, is very fun for players and will keep them coming back for more.

That to me, is a chore. After some... twenty years of gaming, there is no dungeon I haven't already explored, no boss I haven't already defeated and no treasure I haven't already gained at least once before.

It's pretty much stock recipe for a great game, and I'm getting pretty bored by it myself. Seemingly: Gaming becomes a popular part of most peoples lives, so suddenly we find ourselves relooping over stuff again before we get to the new intuitive stuff (COD is like this generations Doom, BF3 is this generations Quake, if you get my drift).

Awesome fights, some end-game content, an interesting story, and a dash of skill is most of what it takes to make a fun and progressive game.

Yeah but, every game has that. That's what's starting to bother me. I can't focus on many RPGs any more due to stuff stated in the previous paragraph.

Perhaps I'm just too difficult to please. But I really want an RPG with something new and exciting.

I agree that the things I posted are part of the standard RPG cookie cutter toolkit, but things can always be added to make the game its own. The thing is that most BYOND RPG's need these starting values to build on top of. It at least gives players an idea on where to start content-wise, from there, it's the developer's decision on what else to add or subtract. Sorry Tiberath, but most RPG's use this standard model, and even though they are pretty much the same game with different items, they're still fun.

If it helps to ease your conscious, I'm working on an RPG with a very different combat style. I won't say much now, seeing as I've not even finalized the design document, but it should be worth all of the effort, and well work at least a few levels of play.
Personally, I feel that your character should build up/grow based upon what they do in your game.

Swordsman= kill stuff with a pointy-obj dead EXP WIN.
Mage= Toast stuff with a lasah -dead. EXP WIN.

That's not saying a mage couldn't get exp for using a sword. But maybe more Exp for using magic. Or perhaps targeting a monsters weakness to kill it would yield even more experience, etc.

There's alot of creative ways around the traditional training systems. I think that AFK anything should just be a feature. For instance plant something in your magic pot, when you login tomorrow or maybe an hour from now you'll have an item based on what you used to fertilize.. etc.

Am I the only one that thinks that this thread was more like a "Please let me AFK train on X game." than the actual Design Philosophy of why AFK training is Good or Bad?
--
Anyways, AFKing for player statistics just seem wrong.
I don't mind it as an option to other systems that are Much, much better tho.

Say killing a monster gets you 100exp and you can kill 10 in a minute, that's 1,000exp, 60,000 an hour. AFK training can be added, but with gains of 10exp per minute, 600 an hour. The AFKer would have to train for 100 hours just to get the same amount of experience of an actual player. So actual players will get stronger faster, plus the bonuses of questing, loot and stuff. But still have the option for the less fortunate souls.

Just a thought.

Another thing here is that most, if not all games here don't even have much in the sense of equipment. Play an MMORPG with an AFK bot and you will see what I mean. You might be the same level as the rest, but their equipment and skills are and should be far superior to yours.

Even further, play an MMORPG with a high exp event. Same thing will happen. You might get to level 50 in 10 hours, but the people who have been playing for far more hours will end up much better overall than you.

Its all about how the developer designed his game.
AFK training supported? Ok. AFK trainer can get as strong or as good as an actual player in the same amount of time? Should not be that way.
I can see some benefits to allowing AFK training, now that I am out in the world will a full time job and much less time and energy to actually play games. My enjoyment these days is in developing and pushing my limits and expanding my knowledge, and no game brings me the enjoyment it once did for very long anymore. Not multiplayer games anyways. By their very nature, from my experience, they are tilted towards grinding to level up.

I'm not saying that we, as the developers, are not at some fault for AFK training happening in the first place by the way the games are made (aka lazily), but if I say you need to be here to train, and you can't prove that you are... That's all there is to it. Naruto Final Fight will stay that way until its revamp update this summer where we've rebuilt the game engine at its core and done everything over. I feel that AFK training will be less of an issue due to the fact that the quests and pvp interactions remind me of SW:TOR and Zelda games. The only reason I bring this up is because NFF was mentioned in the inital post.

I'm not sure how other game developers feel about this, but I do like having a large player base and our ban list is unusually large. I don't like banning people for bug abuse repeatedly, I prefer to issue warnings and then fix the bug so its no longer an issue. Its also how I feel about AFK training. The only reason in my mind, for a ban, is when that person is being an asshole or an idiot. I don't tolerate stupidity. And for the moment, on my game anyways, an act of AFK training constitutes an act of stupidity by breaking a very common rule. That's the way it will remain for the time being, but I am seeking more ways to make the training experience more engaging and I find myself playing old games like Zelda and Pokemon, as Tiberath said.

Those two titles are the ones that got some formula right and it works with every single title they put out. They got something right and I'm not going to stop striving for that, regardless of what programming language I'm using or what project I'm working on.
In response to SuperAntx (#5)
SuperAntx wrote:
If your players don't even have to be at the controls to play your game you have failed as a game designer.

If your game allows AFK Training, why not make it a feature?
Farmville is a very popular game. And it's basically AFK Training: The Game.
(Others have mentioned this as well.)
I have AFK trained on just about every byond game. I do not think that any developer on here has made a game that cannot be botted.

AFK traing is bad and good for the game. bad because a player that has no idea how to bot cannot compete with players that are botting
good because it looks like you have more players online all the time :)

I started botting because i would get addicted to games and then my RL would suffer so i started botting so i would have time in RL. 6 computers later and botting 6-18 games at one time it got a little out of control.

Developers can make it very difficult to bot. One thing i have suggested in the past is make random choices like

prob(1,2)
if(1)
input("Yes","No")
if(2)
input("No","Yes")

if "No"
logout

This i did for some of my own games in the past...
I agree with SuperAntx here. If your game requires or makes it necessary its players to AFK train in order to stay competitive, or your game makes it -possible- for your players to AFK train to become more competitive than a regular player, you have completely failed at designing a game.

Yeah, you'll have a bunch of people logged in, but most of them aren't playing; they're AFK. They're not doing anything or adding anything to the community. They're not even enjoying your game. They're doing no actual work for their 'reward,' either.
It's just an e-peen contest, and if your game is an e-peen contest, your game, frankly, is awful.
These beginner "developers" just want to shove out a game as fast as they can. They don't realize the poor quality of their project, only that if it has original icons and unlock-able abilities, that it's an awesome project. The only advice I have for the new developers is to slow down and take your time. BYOND isn't going anywhere anytime soon, so just focus on building the best experience you can for your players. Beta test the hell out of projects. Study the common complaints people have on current BYOND games and try to avoid those pitfalls. Know your audience and what motivates them to play; What their first instincts are when playing a game. If your game has nice playability, a decent progression system, and a fair amount of content, people will flock to it like moths to a flame. Keep in mind that on BYOND, even the most run-of-the-mill projects can become extremely popular, however unfortunate this fact may be.
In response to Solomn Architect (#29)
Solomn Architect wrote:
These beginner "developers" just want to shove out a game as fast as they can. They don't realize the poor quality of their project, only that if it has original icons and unlock-able abilities, that it's an awesome project. The only advice I have for the new developers is to slow down and take your time. BYOND isn't going anywhere anytime soon, so just focus on building the best experience you can for your players. Beta test the hell out of projects. Study the common complaints people have on current BYOND games and try to avoid those pitfalls. Know your audience and what motivates them to play; What their first instincts are when playing a game. If your game has nice playability, a decent progression system, and a fair amount of content, people will flock to it like moths to a flame. Keep in mind that on BYOND, even the most run-of-the-mill projects can become extremely popular, however unfortunate this fact may be.

Let me add something. Don't create games if you do not have enough time on developing it, for example me....check out my creations, it was all rip but after a month of editing, bug fixing, original coding and iconing, we all gave up because of college. So, our time all goes to waste.
Also, be reasonable with releases.

Develop the core features of your game. Then take those things you think are core features and trim them back even more. Focus on what is physically required to make the game playable. That is your first version.
Your first release is -not- a completed, fully polished game with all the things you ever planned to include and everything working exactly as you intended it to.

What we call that is a pipe dream - it will never be finished, it will never be released, and you'll look a bit foolish if you announce it and then don't produce it.
It's better to finish nothing. That's all.
An AFK system like a profession, where the player is rewarded with something that wouldn't compromise the gameplay as a whole, something like a little money, some random item, etc; in my opinion that's okay.

An AFK system where the player stand still all day long, doing nothing and in the end of the day he's rewarded with stats boost, OP items, all kinds of unbalancing crap you can think of... man, that sucks. It makes playing it completely senseless...
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