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The key to understanding RPGs

mutonizer

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And yet, like I said before, even to people who have almost no experience with RPGs, The Sims is obviously not an RPG.

The Sims 3 has been one of the best RPG out there for some time though and unlike most fake RPGs you see on the market, characters are actually defined by stats, traits, quirks, relationships and whatnot. They gain skill with use in a classless system, can pursue multiple paths and whatnot. With expansions, you can pursue immortality, supernatural shit, aliens, explore tons of Indiana Jones light content, etc...
What a player can do though, which is the interesting bit because it's so rare, is declare intentions (try to go there, try to do that, etc). Ultimately, the actual action resolution (or lack thereof) is decided by stats and factors out of player control. That's the beauty of it for me, especially in an era where cRPG means player doing everything and, as some other folks here mentioned "player skills" (which, btw, is moronic when talking RPG, by the very words used). Having actual action resolution done by game mechanics and not twitchy mouse movement or something, is refreshing.
It's also a very, very open ended RPG, without a story but the one you create as you go (basically the ultimate RPG story and the only one that matters). Because of that, you can replay it pretty much forever.

Main reason I think some people don't consider it RPG is perceived childish/girlish "dollhouse genre", multi-actor management but above all freedom.
Freedom isn't something everyone can handle, especially story wise. When you say "here, do whatever" to some people, they have no fucking clue and usually get bored in 2 minutes after discovering the game mechanics which, for Sims 3, usually resolves around building shitty house, making sims pee everywhere, killing someone, fucking someone.

That said...
it's EA so fuck EA. All the add-ons plus base game will cost you an arm and a leg, even a decade after release.
There are so many fucking mods/UCC out there though, bit nuts.
Sims 4 is for retards.
Sims 3 is one of the best cRPGs out there
CK2 is the other one
 

adrix89

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Why are there so many of my country here?
The Sims is a RPG.

Or is it? Or isn't it? Or is it? Or isn't it?

It doesn't fucking matter!

There is one thing that matters that you need to understand in RPGs which is its historical roots. At first there was Wargames and then there was Dungeons and Dragons which brought some character and story to the wargame. Then some incompetents ported D&D to the computer by their own interpretation and we had "RePeeGiis" ever since.

So what is a RPG?

A fucking STRATEGY game. Sure Rpigs got their own tropes as a genre like levels,stats,classes, choices, whatever just like how adventure games have their own tropes, and they are more limited as a strategy game only controlling one or a party of characters but a strategy game nonetheless.

Why isn't Sims an RPG? Because its not a fucking strategy game. Why isn't Call of Booty a RPG? Because its not a strategy game. Why isn't Jagged Alliance a RPG? Because it is you fucking dumbass.
 
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Sigourn

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What roleplaying does with cRPGs? Letter R in their name?!

Of course.

This "you need combat in an RPG" is the most arbitrary shit I've ever heard. It's the typical case of "let's make a definition with what we have instead of making the definition and then deciding what fits and not".

You can roleplay in Tetris, for all I care.

Precisely.

"Roleplaying game" means nothing because I can choose not to roleplay in Baldur's Gate, and others can choose to roleplay in Call of Duty.

However, there are games more fit than others to allow one to roleplay, to go beyond the obvious "I'm roleplaying as a soldier".

Of course, you probably will say that Wizardry is not RPG too! To the Hurkle beast in the torture chamber with you!

To me, it isn't. Because, much like in CoD, you can roleplay as an explorer and not much more. You have different classes and abilities, but the game hardly gives a shit about it.

The Sims, asuming what the OP said is true, is one of the greatest roleplaying games ever made.
 

baturinsky

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The Sims 3 has loot and exploration. You just have to actually stop roleplaying yourself IRL and leave the virtual basement.
And it has a strategy too, it just lets you decide your objective yourself. It's quite hard to reach top career level and/or immortality in vanilla TS3 on standard life length, for example.
 

Fowyr

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Fowyr said:
Of course, you probably will say that Wizardry is not RPG too! To the Hurkle beast in the torture chamber with you!
To me, it isn't. Because, much like in CoD, you can roleplay as an explorer and not much more. You have different classes and abilities, but the game hardly gives a shit about it.

OK, I need to see it again.
Wizardry is not RPG.
Wizardry is not RPG.
Wizardry is not RPG.

I'm done here. You can't argue with people who think that mouse is a sort of oranges and mineral simultaneously.

EDIT:
You have different classes and abilities, but the game hardly gives a shit about it.
Oh no, it gives a shit. Try to kill golem with party of six level 1 mages and tell me results. Then try the same with more experienced and more balanced party.
 
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Sigourn

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OK, I need to see it again.
Wizardry is not RPG.
Wizardry is not RPG.
Wizardry is not RPG.

It's a good dungeon crawler, just not a good RPG.

Every game is a roleplaying game if you try hard enough. The point of roleplaying games is that you don't need to try hard and larp your way through them, a la Wizardry

I can see it now, people talking to themselves when playing Wizardry. "You should openeth thy treasureth chesthth."

Oh no, it gives a shit. Try to kill golem with party of six level 1 mages and tell me results.

No, it doesn't. You could achieve the same results with different builds and the game still doesn't give a shit.

Otherwise, Call of Duty is an RPG because the game gives a shit when I use a powerful gun or a shit pistol.
 

Fowyr

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It's a good dungeon crawler, just not a good RPG.
But dungeon crawlers ARE RPG.

Every game is a roleplaying game if you try hard enough. The point of roleplaying games is that you don't need to try hard and larp your way through them, a la Wizardry
Thus "roleplaying" means shit. And it always meant shit in cRPGs. It's obvious for any person who knows genre's roots. Check some posts in this thread.

What RPGs you have played, BTW?
I remember that you went completely retard in Arcanum.
http://www.rpgcodex.net/forums/inde...r-played-emphasis-on-game-and-not-rpg.107495/

I can see it now, people talking to themselves when playing Wizardry. "You should openeth thy treasureth chesthth."
It's LARPing. Eke thine Early Modern is atrocious.

No, it doesn't. You could achieve the same results with different builds and the game still doesn't give a shit.
It's the difference between cemetary screen and victory. What do you need more? Blowjob by nubile girl with wizard fetish when your mage hits 12th level?
Otherwise, Call of Duty is an RPG because the game gives a shit when I use a powerful gun or a shit pistol.
Add to it proper character system and you are on the right track.
 

Sigourn

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But dungeon crawlers ARE RPG.

Says you and many others who repeat words like parrots.

Thus "roleplaying" means shit. And it always meant shit in cRPGs. It's obvious for any person who knows genre's roots.

Precisely.

I remember that you went completely retard in Arcanum.

It truly is one of the worst games I've ever played.

It's the difference between cemetary screen and victory. What do you need more?

Something that isn't as binary as "lose or win".

If Wizardry is an RPG, the following games are RPGs:

- Pong
- Pac-Man
- Call of Duty

And almost every game ever made (I would say every game ever made, but there's bound to be some obscure experimental crap).

Add to it proper character system and you are on the right track.

It doesn't need one.

You can have a CYOA game that has more roleplaying in it than Wizardry.

We seriously need to stop with these memes:

- "RPGs need to have combat."
- "RPGs need to have numbers."
- "RPGs need to have exploration."
- "RPGs need to have quests."
- "RPGs need to have character development."

A good RPG gives you more opportunities to live out your character in different ways. But it is perfectly possible to have an RPG that relies on dialogue and nothing else. Like I said, a CYOA videogame that locks out different paths depending on your responses.

EDIT: People are mistaking "roleplaying" with "pen-and-paper inspired". They are not the same thing. Not even close.

You can roleplay a rapist in bed without having been inspired by D&D.
 
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Naveen

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If we can find out why The Sims is not an RPG, we'll have put our finger on what makes something an RPG.

I'm afraid not, because what drives people who ask about the irreducible and unique essence of cRPGs is a dreadful condition, worse than the plague and syphilis combined, known as autism. No solution or answer could please their brittle minds, which are always on the brink of falling into autist rage or ready to implode into sperging outbursts of drooling insanity.
 

Theldaran

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Automatic. So, no combat.

I have seen people arguing here that it is essential for RPGs that stats have to be more important than player skill and that therefore the best possible combat system for an RPG would be one that is completely automatized based on stats and doesn't allow player agency.
:M

Only if you're an instant-satisfaction millennial who can't bother spending some time mastering the system and stats.

Most RPGs last some 50-60 hours, and provided they have enough depth and adequate design they can be replayable, but if you're going for that you might as well make some testing of the system, think out choices, and so on.

Some chraracter-building choices are obvious right off the bat for RPG veterans, though.
 

Haraldur

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I remember, when playing D&D 3.0, that the bulk of the time was spent on banter, turn-based combat resolution and moving from room to room, searching for items (and equipping them), avoiding/surviving traps and being given environmental descriptions. This would be preceded by a somewhat lengthy character-creation phase and punctuated by character progression. This all from the third edition of the first (influential/popular) P&P RPG system. There might be a bit of "role-playing" (bad acting) but that was chiefly as motivation for the other activity.

So, in P&P RPGs, one has banter, challenges (combat, traps, puzzles), exploration, power progression (through improving character statistics and adding new abilities, or through gaining equipment giving equipable/reversible stat-gain and ability-gain), usually character creation (one could just use pre-made characters) and some motivation for the whole exercise, from something as banal as "kill the evil wizard" to something more interesting.

Banter, challenge, exploration, power progression (stats and equipment), usually character creation and motivation.

While some of the earliest CRPGs were multiplayer, they came to be thought of, mainly, as a single-player genre, so banter was lost -- "banter" in games like Baldur's Gate is, to me, just a component of motivation: "these characters interest me, so I want to know more about them and their world" (i.e. "I want to explore and find more such interesting stuff").

CRPGs then have challenge, exploration, motivation and power progression (stats and equipment), all as major parts of gameplay (i.e. the player spends non-trivial time thinking about them: "how do I defeat this enemy?", "where(/which way) should I go next?"/"what should I do next?", "I should save my vault by finding a water chip"/"I have woken in a mortuary, I must find out what is going on"/"I must escape this dungeon/barrow-mound/mortuary/whatever"/"I must kill the evil X", "a new weapon -- cool! Should I use it? What should I drop?"/"Level-up! More killing ability or better defence/lockpicking?" -- notice that most of these involve making decisions, I think Sid Meier said something like "Gameplay is a series of interesting choices") and often character creation up-front (essentially a bunch of power-progression, from (almost) nothing, at the very beginning, which is arguably a bad thing as it requires either guessing or prior knowledge of the game before play -- i.e. metagaming).

There are games, like Doom and Doom 2, which are clearly inspired by P&P RPGs, having challenges (three pinkies going at you in a small dark room, say), exploration, motivation (er... destroy the demon hordes! Not a lot, but enough) and some power progression (no visible stats, but the equipment has stats and you pick up new weapons and ammo for existing weapons, though there is little long-term thought about weapons as there is the ability to carry everything), but no character creation (but many RPGs also lack that). Why are they not RPGs? Well, the motivation is a bit weak and the power progression is both simple and reversible* -- if you run out of all ammo, then your melee attack is just as weak as it was at the very beginning (if without the temporary power-up) -- plus, when the last gun is gained there is no more progression and, as stated earlier, the progression does not dominate thought much (partially because all/any decisions are reversible or transient). Doom is not really an RPG.
*note that reversibility is not a disqualification for an RPG, though it makes sense for many modifications to a human(oid) character to be irreversible. A game featuring only robots could have hardware and software upgrades (even duplicating a character and copying over all its knowledge, skills and memory!), so that essentially all stats were a function of the equipped inventory.

I have read about games criticised for not having challenge (indeed, called "not-games") -- these are clearly not RPGs. Even if RPGs can be very easy, they at least offer the illusion of difficulty and the theoretical risk of failure/reload -- and the challenge could, theoretically, be "how quickly/efficiently can I get through this?"*, as much of the gameplay of a dungeon crawler is resource optimisation, as the challenge/failure is/results-from resource exhaustion.
*most people would rather not watch a movie at double speed, so there is a bit of a difference.

To deal with some (facetious) examples:

Pong: No exploration, little motivation (probably just banter from your human opponent), no power progression (as far as I know) -- not an RPG.

Pacman: Not really any exploration (you see the whole map at once, and seeing new maps as one continues does not really count), little motivation, trivial/reversible power progression -- not an RPG.

The Sims: Challenge and motivation are what you make them (i.e. little inherent), trivial exploration, power progression... maybe, but to what end? Not an RPG.

Thief Gold: Much exploration, significant challenge, detailed motivation and world-building, but little/trivial power progression (no visible stats, no equipment carryover from mission to mission -- there can be resource exhaustion, but only within a mission; overall, not a dominant part of gameplay) -- not an RPG, but certainly hitting some of the same buttons.

Deus Ex: Much exploration, some challenge (at least at the beginning, on Realistic difficulty), detailed motivation and world-building and much power progression -- certainly an RPG. It is also an FPS, to some extent (i.e. not very good as an FPS) -- it is both, the RPG part makes it great. FPS-RPG hybrid.

Wizardry 8: Much challenge (if only the battles were faster...), significant exploration, reasonable (though cheesy) motivation and a complex power progression system that will certainly give the player much reason for thought, plus multiple character creation (i.e. a big hunk of power progression at the start). Of course, it is an RPG.

Dungeons of Daggorath: Challenging (well, I kept dying), very simple motivation (kill the evil wizard! OK given that it was 1982, though arguably sufficient even for new games), exploration required to find and kill the evil wizard (and find items to allow success) and simple power progression (inherent strength improves through a process the player does not control, but equipment does matter) -- just about an RPG.

Wizardry 1: Challenging, very simple motivation (I imagine, I did not have a manual when I gave it a short try), much exploration, significant power progression through level-up and equipment (I suspect -- I never got that far) -- it is an RPG.

Super Metroid: Challenging, much exploration, decent motivation (though the setting did not really grab me) and the power progression is trivial -- one explores to get powerups, but there are few real choices (turn this powerup off to make this bit easier, then back on and continue); it is not an RPG, though (like Thief) it hits some of the same buttons.

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night: A little challenge, much exploration, decent fun/cheesy motivation and as for power progression, well, there is more to it than in Super Metroid, with some mutually exclusive equipment giving meaningfully different abilities and an entirely non-interactive level-up system -- the player can choose to pay a lot of attention to the power progression, but can also ignore it and complete the game without much difficulty with somewhat suboptimal equipment. It has about as much RPG in it as Dungeons of Daggorath, so I suppose it is an RPG, but the power progression is weak enough compared with the action-platform gameplay that the extent of its RPG-ness depends on one's play-style. Platformer-RPG hybrid.

Fallout: Some challenge (simple turn-based tactics combat), much exploration, detailed motivation and world-building, and power progression through cool items and an interesting character system, with single character creation. Of course, it is an RPG (it would not have been a very good turn-based tactics game -- Tactics-RPG hybrid, or is that going too far?).

Planescape: Torment: A little challenge, much exploration, detailed motivation and world-building and power progression that, while not overly complex or fraught (given that combat was rather easy) was quite interesting, linked to the motivation, with entertaining item descriptions and stats that determined what and how much extra text (motivation) one would get (i.e exploration of the setting through dialogue). Certainly an RPG.

Final Fantasy 6: A little challenge, some/weak exploration (I do not recall getting any important equipment that way, and elements of the setting and story were mainly revealed in a set order, limiting the incentive for exploration to taking the most obvious route), detailed motivation (though I was not particularly intrigued) and power progression through equipment (with some meaningful choices -- mainly through treating the characters as equipment and equipping different ones in the party), a non-interactive level-up system plus the espers (though with no exclusivity, any choices could be avoided by just grinding more). I would say that it is an RPG, except that the weak exploration lessens its RPG-ness somewhat (which, I imagine, afflicts many JRPGs). Depending on my mood, I would say that Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is more of an RPG than Final Fantasy 6, but I suppose it just about counts as an RPG.

Chrono Trigger: A little challenge, a cool concept/motivation, significant exploration, power progression: equipment has little complexity of choices and the leveling-up is automatic, but there are irreversible power-ups to be discovered. I would say that it is an RPG (less than Wizardry 1 or Wizardry 8, but more than Dungeons of Daggorath).

Phantasy Star 4: Mostly like Final Fantasy 6, except without the espers and with discoverable combos, and that I like it better (it has a more interesting (to me) motivation, so it must be more of an RPG!).

I have not played Call of Duty. Are there RPGs lacking significant exploration, motivation and power progressions, or non-RPGs possessing them?

I do not know about The Sims 3, having only played the original The Sims. If there are addons or mods that provide exploration (as well as adequate motivation to explore) then maybe those addons or mods qualify, but, judging from the first game, the series is clearly not intended for that kind of gameplay -- exploration may exist in many strategy games, sports games etc., but it features as a primary part of gameplay (i.e. time spent, to a great extent) in RPGs, single-player FPSs and the Thief series.

EDIT: Oh and:

Star Control 2: Much exploration, much power progression (though reversible and, if one plays very badly, a resource that can be exhausted if one runs out of fuel), significant challenge and much motivation (I really like the setting and the dialogue). It is an RPG, despite having no "characters", only a ship. Of course it is an RPG.
 
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Black Angel

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Why did I make this thread
19968.jpg
 

Sigourn

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So, in P&P RPGs, one has banter, challenges (combat, traps, puzzles), exploration, power progression (through improving character statistics and adding new abilities, or through gaining equipment giving equipable/reversible stat-gain and ability-gain), usually character creation (one could just use pre-made characters) and some motivation for the whole exercise, from something as banal as "kill the evil wizard" to something more interesting.

Banter, challenge, exploration, power progression (stats and equipment), usually character creation and motivation.

Stopped reading.

Here's the fundamental difference between one group and the other:

- One group believes RPGs have to decidedly emulate PnP RPGs in some way or form.
- The other group believes RPGs don't need to fit into PnP RPGs. After all, "roleplaying" is a broad term.

However, I'm willing to concede that, because of the origins of cRPGs, it makes sense that the first definition is the "truest" one. But the second definition (mine and many others too) is true as well.
 

Grauken

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Third group, cRPGs is the genre that sprung forth from Wizardry, Rogue and Ultima
 

Fowyr

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Sigourn

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However, I'm willing to concede that, because of the origins of cRPGs, it makes sense that the first definition is the "truest" one. But the second definition (mine and many others too) is true as well.
Are you talking about these people? :M
http://www.uesp.net/wiki/Oblivion:Roleplaying

Well, I've always said that roleplaying is an action autistic in nature and that requires commitment (just like PnP RPGs). I don't roleplay in Morrowind, unless you consider roleplay "not abusing the game's mechanics and not metagaming".
 
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