Hello, I’ve finally started doing some playtesting. I’ve got a test project setup with the four PCs, an average enemy (Skeleton), & some pieces of equipment. I’ve just been focusing on the core essentials by running the ‘battle test’ feature, seeing how the PCs perform with & without equipment if all they did was attack every turn.
I decided to skip physical prototyping as:
- I’m using an existing system. There’s little point replicating something that’s ready to use & quicker to setup.
- There are too many numbers involved for doing the simplest things by hand. Its not that I don’t like math, its just that I’d need to calculate the results of each & every single action (base attack + weapon attack – base defence – armour defence, etc) for each & every single character for each & every single turn for each & every single playtest. It really slows things down & becomes very tedious when you’re trying to see what changing a single value will do.
As they are without any armour, all PCs are quite vulnerable (which is the way I’d like it to be), however armour isn’t working the way I thought it would.
I have some options in mind:
- Change the armour.
Originally I was going to have three tiers of armour: light (all except Mage), medium (Warrior & Cleric), & heavy (Warrior only). However I kept finding that a Warrior with heavy armour would easily shrug off damage that would annihilate a robed Mage. I’m thinking of cutting it down to two tiers, the heavier one shared by the Warrior & Cleric.
I also had values like ‘light armour DEF = 5’ & ‘heavy armour DEF = 15’. Apparently the difference is enough to turn a death blow into a scratch. I’ve tried boosting all armour by 10 or 20 so the difference between them is less major, but this makes heavier armour feel negligible compared to light armour. I’ll need to play around with the numbers a bit more.
As a side note, there is also the shield (all except Agent) & magic robes (Cleric & Mage) available. I’ll also need to think about helmets, accessories, & possibly variations of all equipment, but that won’t be till later on.
- Change the attack formula.
The default attack formula in RM Ace is “A.atk * 4 – B.def * 2” (A = attacker, B = target). I did simplify it to “A.atk – B.def” but I still found that armour didn’t affect damage the way I thought it would. I’m thinking of changing the formula to something more percentage based; something like “A.atk – (A.atk / 100 * B.def)”. In other words, armour with DEF = 10 should remove 10% of damage. This is closer to the kind of effect I want armour to have so I think I’ll go with it.
- Give all characters roughly the same health.
Referring back to the spreadsheet from my previous post, PC health ranges from about 60 – 100, with each character levelling up health at different rates. I’m thinking of having everyone start at 100 but keeping the current health increments, so nine levels later everyone will have marginally different health. This won’t change much but it does fit with my “equipment over base stats” design goal. It just feels more sensible to me.
I’ve also encountered a bug. If you give a character the “dual wield” feature, any weapon assigned to the second weapon slot will increase DEF, MAT, & MDF, but not ATK for some reason. Even assigning a weapon with 0 for everything will make DEF increase by 3; I don’t understand why it’s doing that. Looking online, this seems to be an issue with the editor itself & is exclusive to the battle test feature. Apparently it works properly in-game.
I do have some other notes but I’ll leave it there.
In other news, I’ve spent much of this week sorting things out with WINZ before starting my new job next week. Adjusting to a 40 hour job will probably heavily affect my progress for the next while, if not for a long time. That doesn’t mean I’ll stop making progress where I can. I’ll try to not let the job tire me out.