Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

[ Big| Medium| Small] -



Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 7 posts ] 
    Starmage
  Sun Nov 04, 2018 4:18 am
User avatar
Member

Generic Townsperson
Image


Image
Content Hidden


Image
Content Hidden


Image
Content Hidden


Image
Content Hidden


Image
Content Hidden


Features:

- 3-4 hours of gameplay
- Colorful cast of characters
- Engaging and fun turn-based strategy battles with a special stack system that affects your skills' abilites.
- A stat distribution system that allows you to customize your party members' stats.
- Playable characters that offers their own unique traits in battles
- An Unlockable mode that offers new story content with fun boss battles along with multiple endings
- Very intriguing yet simple storyline that will leave you curious and engaged.
- Mesmerizing fairy-tale/Coloring book styled game aesthetics.
- Enjoy BerryB/BerryRMN's beautiful artworks from enemy sprites to facesets to CGs.

Credits:

Mostly everything: Degica Co., LTD

Graphics:

- BerryB
- Sherman 3D
- Jgreene
- SkottyTV
- whtdragon
- Loose Leaf
- PandaMaru
- McSunday
- GrandmaDeb
- Kattriella
- hian
- Creative Ed
- kokororeflections
- Moghunter
- Michael Galefire

Music:

- Murray Atkinson
- Joel Steudler
- Gyrowolf
- kwahmah_02
- oceanictrancer
- Bitter Sweet Entertainment, Inc.
- Wingless Seraph/YouFulca : https://wingless-seraph.net/en/material-music.html
- Kevin Macleod

Plugins:

- Yanfly
- Hime
- Moghunter
- Galv
- SumRndmDde
- Shaz

Hope you all enjoy! ^_^

_________________
Check out my Projects!! :)
ImageImage

ImageImageImageImageImageImage


Top Top
Profile      
 

    Xilef
  Sun Nov 04, 2018 1:35 pm
User avatar
Staff

Big Dumb Guy

Location: UK
This could be the first MV game that's actually good. Downloading now, will see about playing through it and give my thoughts.

As an aside, the BlueSkies series is on my list of games to play along with some other legendary RPG Maker classics so I hope to give retrospective thoughts and analysis on those games at some point too.

EDIT: Already I can say that this is a great MV project, it's like an accumulation of everything good about your previous efforts. I've got some good things and bad things to say which I'll do after I complete the game. I've already spent nearly an hour and a half playing this. How long did the RMN contest last? Feels like there's been about two months of development behind this. If you don't win then I'd like to see what projects beat this.

Anyway, I'll have a lot more to say when I finish it.


Top Top
Profile      
 

    Starmage
  Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:04 am
User avatar
Member

Generic Townsperson
Hi Xilef! Thank you so much for checking out the game and playing it! ^_^ I'm so happy to hear that you've played quite a bit and have already said that it is a great MV Project! ^_^ :) I am sooo excited to hear your thoughts about the game once you're done playing it. ^_^ :) We sure hope you'll enjoy, too! ;) :D

Berry and I worked on the game since Oct. 5th, and we finished everything (including testing) on Oct. 29th ;) The event started at Oct. 1 and ended at Oct. 31st, too. ;)

Btw, I'm also happy to know that you think our project is a good MV game! ^_^ :) Thank you so much for your kind words and we hope that you enjoy the game, Xilef! :D

If you also ever try the BlueSkies series, I'm also hoping that you have a good time with 'em, despite how dated they are already xD (My first and second RM games ever made haha xD)

_________________
Check out my Projects!! :)
ImageImage

ImageImageImageImageImageImage


Top Top
Profile      
 

    Xilef
  Tue Nov 06, 2018 12:50 am
User avatar
Staff

Big Dumb Guy

Location: UK
Completed in 3 hours 20 minutes and I definitely took my time, min/maxing the crap out of my party and talking to absolutely all the NPCs.

Prepare for a text dump (sorry!).

Technical issues:
  • Title screen is not mouse compatible - well, it is but the mouse is misaligned to the entire screen
  • Font is hard to read due to glyphs being slightly pushed together
  • Some map doodads are used incorrectly - lots of objects on walls that should be on floors
  • Kept getting asked if I wanted a battle tutorial in each new battle, even after I said no
  • NPCs kept on blocking 1-tile paths when their random pathing takes them that way
  • After using the piano in the swampy purple goo area all my party were locked in their facing direction - I had to reset the game
  • First are of Jamelot has a parallax overlay of tree shadows that follows the camera

Review:

The opening part of the game has no dialogue portraits, which I get why once you arrive in Jamelot as the dialogue portraits inject a big sense of fairy tale, children's story into the dialogue - but I found it difficult to follow who was talking during the opening, especially when the dialogue boxes were positioned at the top of the screen (so the name box was quite far away from the single-line text). Some odd dialogue in Jamelot is missing portraits, it is a bit obvious when you get used to seeing the charming artwork.

I almost laughed out loud when I first stepped out of the house into the street. Sound design was perfect. In general, sound design and choice of music and sound effects, even the user-interface effects, is very good. The volume of the battle effects is a little loud, so I had to turn that down in the options.

The game quality picks up massively after arriving at Jamelot. The dialogue improves, the scenery improves, nice characters appear, the locations become varied. Everything looks beautiful in the first forest area. My complaint would be the bird NPCs that are flying around, these look stiff and awkward against the leafs blowing in the wind. I would re-skin some of the leafs into birds and use the same system, so birds are flocking with the wind.

I think the entire game would have been better if it started immediately in Jamelot, but there's a lot of story stuff that would need figuring out again. Maybe handle them as short flashbacks (maybe Cinderella needs to sit down and catch her breath or rest up and during this time a flash-back happens or something like that). I just feel that Jamelot's beautiful introduction would give a wonderful first impression and the confusion that Cinderella has is something the player themselves has at that moment. The Jamelot opening was great for getting the player immediately going, player gets control relatively quickly, navigates, then meets the rest of the party who are varied, colourful and delightful characters.

This is a personal thing of mine, but I like to put in an early reminder for the player to save their game because many people basically play an RPG Maker game to "check it out" - end up getting drawn in and then stop playing when they are killed in a rather unfair feeling battle encounter. The whole time I was thinking "player likely hasn't thought to even open the menu, let alone save their game". A reminder just before the first battle would be ideal. I would say maybe before stepping out of the front door with the party? You've got good characters that seem more than fitting to break the fourth wall for this one moment if needed.

The "would you like to proceed? [recommended level XX]" message was incredibly nice. Thank you. That actually encouraged me to grind for a bit - many RPG Maker games give no tangible incentive to grind but this game does it right there in a very direct way that made me feel like I had the power to decide to grind.

However, the boss battle immediately after this first message absolutely destroyed me. I was trying my hardest to beat it, I went by the advice of the game and focused on the minions first, but I was doing about 40 damage per round on them (I had put all my skill points into attack/magic-attack for all characters). I focused on applying status effects to them first, but these effects looked like they did nothing at all to me. By the time I got the two minions down to 50% health the boss was fully charged. I used up all my healing items. My last save was before I did the grinding (save reminder would have helped a bit).

I think the boss was probably too complicated for a first boss battle. I think maybe have the boss attack once in a round and killing the minions weakens that one attack (so instead of punishing the player for not killing the minions quick enough, switch it round so you are rewarding them for focusing on killing the minions).

I didn't do this, but after the first boss battle I was tempted to walk all the way back to the last inn to heal as I didn't know what was ahead. I think a more definitive "the path is clear ahead, we should find an inn to rest at" at the end of the boss battle would have helped the player make a decision here (or some kind of free heal to 100%).

The regular enemies on the other side of the winter town absolutely smashed me up. They're in groups of 4 and I managed to take out one and do 50% damage to another before getting beat. Each one does about 60% damage to one of my heroes, so in a single round they can kill half my party. I was forced to go back to the previous area and grind for a bit more. The grind from level 4 to 5 is rather length compared to 3 to 4 which was discouraging - further more I wiped out all the enemies so I was unable to grind further. Put me in an awkward position where I was unsure if I could mathematically continue the game.

I get that mobs on the map is considered the cheap and easy "solution" to the so-called "random encounter problem", but one massive benefit of random-encounters is quick, rapid grinding. The mobs should respawn if you defeat them all or if you rest at an inn. I guess you wanted to avoid making the player grind and you wanted to make battles meaningful, but most RPG Maker games fail to make battles meaningful, it's something that's very difficult to achieve. It's probably easier and better for development to make battles quick and easy - makes grinding better too.

I used up all my revive items in the enemy encounter after the winter town, that's how I eventually got through it. Made me wish I had a character that could revive with an MP cost. I also wish I had a multi-hero targeting defence buff spell. This win pushed me well into level 5, which would have been nice before this particular battle.

The amount of time I spent around this winter area gives me some good information about when to introduce new weapons and armours. I would have absolutely loved to have the option to buy equipment that would have made my life a bit easier, even before the first boss. There is no equipment to purchase in the game, so in the end I had a bucket of cash but nothing to spent it on. I think equipment would have been a good system to make the game easier for those struggling.

I was back-tracking a lot, actually. If a path could be opened up on the other side of forests that gives a quick way back to the start then back-tracking would be less of a chore - even if it's a 1-way path back.

The inn healing music starts to feel lengthy and the inn keepers saying "thank you!" afterwards drags it out longer. I'd get rid of the post-inn healing message at the least. Also noticed that after enemies are killed they need to fade about before you can move or open the menu.

Put out the fire? Why wouldn't you? Still in the winter area, this is. Could have been a good opportunity for some character dialogue before automatically putting out the fire - the characters having brief chats with each other would have been interesting.

Ice Golem has a similar issue to the first boss. Feels difficult with the angels also attacking, if the angels didn't attack (as often?) then this boss would have been enjoyable (focus angels to make main boss weaker before attacking main boss - during which main boss does damage to party).

Battles get very, very tactical later on. The "instant effect" abilities make battle way more tactical than normal. This also makes battles tiring, they aren't fleeting and can take a while to get through (was this on purpose to make battles more meaningful?). A lot of the enemies just destroy my party when I first encounter them. Takes re-loading a save to figure out how careful you need to be with each battle.

The final boss battle was very, very good. I also felt like the Cryslimes were a really good encounter.

I was grinning at the very predictable ending - saw that one a mile away.

Some minor stuff:
  • Would be much nicer if the default enemy to hit was whichever one is next to have its turn
  • Waiting for the animations to play out for target-all spells is very tedious in the last half of the game

Additional thoughts:

Carnival of Imagination had an absolute massive amount of text to mash through at the opening. So much of that dialogue could have been trimmed out. I don't think I'll play through that, but bonus content is nice to see.

Seems like Cinderella was chosen as a name out of knowing that the player is likely familiar with the character and has preconceived ideas about her story. Dreaming Lull is fire element and burns, but I think more fire related puns would have justified her name better - I was surprised by her hair colour, I imagined charcoal black hair for a Cinderella parody character. The glass slipper at the end came with the prince, but these didn't feel like strong ties to Cinderella. Just felt like elements that were borrowed, rather than justified.

Pop-culture name dropping is awkward and can make a game dated very quickly. If a character says "facebook" then I automatically start sniffing about for poor writing in the rest of the dialogue.

I was very happy with the length of the game, 3 hours 20 minutes felt like a really good amount of time to play a game of this size to me. This has shown me that short RPG projects of under 4 hours can actually work quite well.

Conclusion:

I actually really liked it. It made me smile to see Goddess Vyena mentioned in the game, nice BlueSkies reference (at least, I think it is from BlueSkies 2?).

This is the first of your MV games that I actually completed, it definitely feels like an accumulation of everything you've done with MV in the past. Bizarre Monkey is the other person I feel has a good rate of MV game output, feels like you're up there with him except you've retained the "RPG" of "RPG Maker".

For your next game I'd like to see a new approach to handling dialogue. I think you can do with reducing the length of conversations and then adding spots of short, quick dialogue into other areas. The ending in particular had moments where Cinderella would pretty much repeat the same thing she said 5 dialogue boxes ago and I think there was a dialogue box that was just an ellipsis or some kind of emotive expression.

That random fire in the snow area that I had to extinguish felt like it was screaming out for some dialogue between the characters about why the fire was there, but I was upset when it was pretty much looked past and never considered.


Top Top
Profile      
 

    Starmage
  Tue Nov 06, 2018 1:49 pm
User avatar
Member

Generic Townsperson
Hi Xilef! Wow!!! That's a very detailed review! :O Thank you so much for this, Xilef! ^_^ :) We really appreciate this so, as the issues you found are also things that we can learn from as game devs! :D

I understand that you felt a little bit confused at the intro parts on the real world when the chars didnt have face-sets with them xD :) But I'm glad the scenes of Jamelot has been to your liking, what with its' atmosphere and faceset arts! :D

The gameplay is also very heavy on difficulty and challenge that sort of demands good strats xD :D The fact that you did get past the main story and finish it already tells enough that you did amazingly well on the battles, despite the issues you may have encountered with the previous bosses xD :)

As for the technical issues you found, wow! Thanks so much! It is worth checking and avoiding for any future MV projects that I partake in! ^_^ :) XD

Once again, I am truly happy that you enjoyed the 3 hours and 20 minutes of your game time playing this game, despite the issues that you have encountered! :) I really really appreciate you taking the time to write your thoughts and concerns that can be improved. :) And yeah, that campfire thing in the snows does indeed call for character interaction! xD I'll keep that in mind also! :D

Carnival of Imagination is an extra content that is there if you wish to have some sort of redeeming ending after what happened xD :D Most of the work there was done by my talented partner for this event, Berry. xD :)

Thanks so much again, Xilef! I really appreciate this and it was a good read for me to learn from. ^_^ I will do my best to keep improving with how I work with RMMV in the future! :D

PS: Yup, Goddess Vyena is from the BlueSkies series ;) XDD

PS 2: You can also click on the music note at the top left corner during battle btw, to make battles faster ;) And you can skip dialogues by pressing shift. ;) XD But that's alright, I should've put a little tutorial/call for these stuff, since those are not something a player may find immediately. :D

_________________
Check out my Projects!! :)
ImageImage

ImageImageImageImageImageImage


Top Top
Profile      
 

    Xilef
  Tue Nov 06, 2018 6:07 pm
User avatar
Staff

Big Dumb Guy

Location: UK
I had figured out you can fast-forward battles by holding down the accept button, but the animations for multi-target spells are still very lengthy and holding down with memory cursor (which I always use) can cause accidental commands, so I found it smarter to do a command and then lightly tap the accept button to try and get through the animations. This doesn't feel like friendly design.

I didn't know you could skip dialogue; visual novels tend to have a little bit of UI that says "hold whatever to skip" - could have a tiny thing like that in the window skin when the first message box is shown on each instance of dialogue and then fade it out for the rest of the event. Still, the dialogue in the main game was not long enough to warrant skipping through and the ending I was able to mash through as still manage to read the text (ending did feel too dialogue heavy).

Carnival of Imagination was too strong on dialogue, I would advise people skip through that because it discouraged me from continuing on and I can't remember any critical information being in that dialogue. I was also a little bit put off that the Jamelot characters weren't there immediately, it was their real-world counterparts which I never felt any connection with (I consider the real-world to be the weakest part of the main game).

Whilst the main ending was nothing amazing and almost perfectly predictable (which was a good thing, in this case) I think it was good enough by itself. I can't remember having a desire to see a different outcome. Although now I think about it the idea of an afterlife is something usually held by religions, so maybe some foreshadowing and hinting of that in the main game would have sparked some curiosity and desire to see how it plays out (keep in mind I didn't play through Carnival of Imagination, just saved after the opening dialogue and called it quits there after I checked who was in my party).


Top Top
Profile      
 

    Starmage
  Wed Nov 07, 2018 4:53 am
User avatar
Member

Generic Townsperson
Hi Xilef! Oh my! I'm glad you enjoyed finishing until the main ending, but yeah, I do understand that some people might find the CoI dialogue a little too strong, since it was indeed designed to develop the real world chars and make 'em deep. ^_^ :)

I also understand your concerns with how we should've made it easier for players to understand/know how to skip dialogues and etc. :)

Once again, I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts here, Xilef! And your extremely detailed feedback is taken note for future references! ^_^ :) We might upload a quick fix patch soon that will address the issues found. ;) ^_^

Thank you so much for playing the game, Xilef! And for your honest feedback that are really insightful! :D

_________________
Check out my Projects!! :)
ImageImage

ImageImageImageImageImageImage


Top Top
Profile      
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 7 posts ] 


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No users and 29 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

cron
We are an independent, not-for-profit game making community.
Homepage
Board Index
About Us
Downloadable Games
Free Browser Games
Games in Development
RPG Maker Support
Game Maker Support
Construct 2 Support
HBGames the eZine
Advanced RPG Maker
Site Announcements
Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group