Official Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

Telepath RPG: Servants of God

Discussion in 'RPG News & Content' started by VentilatorOfDoom, May 9, 2010.

  1. VentilatorOfDoom RPG Codex Staff Patron

    VentilatorOfDoom
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2009
    Parrots:
    7,737
    Location:
    Deutschland
    Click here and disable ads!
    Indie Dev Sinister Design <a href="http://sinisterdesign.net/?page_id=267">released a demo</a> of their RPG.

    <blockquote>Part Japanese strategy RPG, part free-roaming Western RPG, there is no RPG out there quite like Telepath RPG: Servants of God. The finished game will feature:

    <ul><li>A narrative about identity, the nature of the mind, and the existence of God

    <li>Dialog choices that have real in-game consequences

    <li>Furious tactical turn-based combat

    <li>Psychic powers that affect the game both on and off the battlefield

    <li>A party of interesting characters that you can choose to grow close with or alienate.</ul></blockquote>

    TTBC (tactical turn-based combat) sounds not bad, but its meaning can range from incredibly boring and annoying to pure awesome. Someone play the demo and let me know what we have here.
    Spotted at: <A HREF="http://www.rpgwatch.com/#14921">RPGWatch</A>
     
    ^ Top  
  2. SuicideBunny (ノ ゜Д゜)ノ ︵ ┻━┻

    SuicideBunny
    Joined:
    May 1, 2007
    Parrots:
    8,943
    Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Torment: Tides of Numenera
    +1
     
    ^ Top  
  3. Andhaira Arcane

    Andhaira
    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Parrots:
    1,866,119
    I downloaded and played the demo. Its fun, and well worth downloading and playing. However, I do see it becoming boring pretty fast. I dunno why it is but the game lacks that specific something...that pizazz.
     
    ^ Top  
  4. reaven Educated

    reaven
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2009
    Parrots:
    204
    Location:
    Spain
    If you can get past it being a shitty flash game, maybe you can get some enjoyment out of it.
    I can't.
     
    ^ Top  
  5. bhlaab Arbiter

    bhlaab
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2008
    Parrots:
    1,787
    Yeah 60mb no thanks
     
    ^ Top  
  6. Fez Erudite

    Fez
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Parrots:
    7,954
    I'll try it. I think there's been some Suikoden influence. The interface and visuals aren't going to win it any awards, but I will give it a chance.
     
    ^ Top  
  7. Barghest Augur Patron

    Barghest
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Parrots:
    593
    Location:
    In the ninth and final circle of Hell
    Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech
    -1 for artwork.
     
    ^ Top  
  8. Fez Erudite

    Fez
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Parrots:
    7,954
    It is very sloppy on the visuals. I don't just mean that it is retro, old-fashioned or similar. It's just not well put together or consistent and lacks style or quality. Makes you appreciate the work done on those old DOS games and Vogel's (or other indie developers) work all the more. The mix of low resolution bitmaps and the bland and less detailed but sharper vectors don't help matters. It would have been better with all pixel art or all vectors if he's not got an artist to help.

    I'll maybe get to the end eventually. I've put up with bad visuals in a game before if it was still fun. So far it is very much a Japanese style of RPG.

    So far I've noticed that for some reason everyone's cloaks billow all the time.
     
    ^ Top  
  9. Fez Erudite

    Fez
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Parrots:
    7,954
    More impressions:

    Bland empty maps that feel half finished

    Invisible walls everywhere, including some in the middle of paths that inexplicably block you

    Everything is too slow with little happening

    Unoriginal writing and story
     
    ^ Top  
  10. Kingston Arcane

    Kingston
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Parrots:
    4,321
    Location:
    I lack the wit to put something hilarious here
    In a JRPG? I don't believe it!
     
    ^ Top  
  11. denizsi Arcane

    denizsi
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
    Parrots:
    9,996
    Location:
    bosphorus
    No way I'm ever giving this a chance. I bet the TB combat sucks hard anyway.
     
    ^ Top  
  12. Mastermind Arcane Bethestard

    Mastermind
    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    Parrots:
    17,986
    The story seems to be straight out of an internet religion discussion.
    The gameplay was not "furious" in any sense of the word. It's also a turn based game that doesn't let me act later in the turn which pisses me off to no end. I don't understand why people make turn based games without as much as a basic tactical option like that.

    On the pro side, both the characters and their psychic power system has potential, though whether they do anything decent with it in the full game remains to be seen. Cautiously recommended to all the dialogue and C&C fags here.
     
    ^ Top  
  13. Fez Erudite

    Fez
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Parrots:
    7,954
    Even compared to a JRPG. Keep in mind that I managed to plow through Suikoden but this thing is so dull I just gave up. The combat is crap too.

    Agreed.

    The few example of dialogue, even the ones that used the "scan" ability to read minds, weren't much and again were rather unoriginal. The characters and scenarios are all ones I've seen used far too often. I noticed some oddly broken parts that didn't seem to take into account certain actions or the order that a player may tackle something.

    EDIT: Worst of all, there's no start menu shortcut to uninstall this.
     
    ^ Top  
  14. Noddy Liturgist

    Noddy
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Parrots:
    127
  15. Craig Stern Sinister Design Developer

    Craig Stern
    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Parrots:
    255
    Location:
    Chicago
    Hey guys! This is the developer. I just thought I'd pop in and say hi. For those of you who have taken the time to give this a shot, I appreciate it. I've put an awful lot of time and effort into developing TSoG (I started in late 2007), and I'm far from finished. :wink:
     
    ^ Top  
  16. Fez Erudite

    Fez
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Parrots:
    7,954
    Good luck. If you can win over the crowd here you'll deserve any success you get.
     
    ^ Top  
  17. Craig Stern Sinister Design Developer

    Craig Stern
    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Parrots:
    255
    Location:
    Chicago
    Thanks, Fez! I've read all of the comments in this thread, and I'm doing my best to try to glean some useful feedback from them. So far, here is where I'm at:

    1) the game is slow. My first thought is that people think the game starts off slowly. But most RPGs start slow, with you puttering around town killing rats and slimes, and I've deliberately avoided doing that. So I'm not sure if that's a comment about the pacing of the story, the length of the battles, the fact that the game advances primarily through dialog, or something else entirely. Any thoughts?

    2) the story is unoriginal. I'm not sure what to make of this one, either. I mean, you know, there's that whole Hero of a Thousand faces thing, where every story is just a retelling of ancient myths, in which case, yeah, sure it's unoriginal. This game uses the "ramshackle resistance versus the government" archetype for purposes of structure, which other RPGs have done before. Is that what you guys are getting at? I mean, if you're sick of that, then you must be super-sick of the "you are a chosen hero and must save the world from the reborn dark god" archetype that Dragon Age uses. (For my money, it's all in the execution.)

    3) the graphics aren't great. Yeah, okay, true.

    4) the combat needs a "wait" command. I've heard that one before, and I think it's worth including, so I've started coding that.

    5) the combat is dull. Well, it's straightforward strategy RPG combat.If you find that dull, then you know, that's your call. Personally, I prefer it to the quasi-realtime stuff Bioware keeps using. It's a matter of taste, really.

    6) the maps aren't great. I'm working on this one. I blame myself for using such a cumbersome method of building the exploration part of the game: it makes zone-building slow and difficult. Still, I'm doing my best to fill up the game world with surprises and side quests. (Most exploration and discovery of hidden areas currently occurs through dialog. Try exploring the library and talking to the librarian, for example.)

    Anyway, thanks for giving the game a try! I hope you'll give it another shot when the full thing comes out. ;)
     
    ^ Top  
  18. GarfunkeL Racism Expert

    GarfunkeL
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Parrots:
    15,200
    Location:
    Insert clever insult here
    Well, if the developer is here, I'll give it a try as well and post my thoughts here.
     
    ^ Top  
  19. GarfunkeL Racism Expert

    GarfunkeL
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Parrots:
    15,200
    Location:
    Insert clever insult here
    Writing as I go along:

    1) Holy shit the character portrait for the Hero is horrible! Apparently I'm albino emo who has sniffed way too much spice so that my eyes have turned completely blue. Not cool.

    2) Luckily, my father has a really cool 'stache and my mom is a fox.

    3) Ah, my rabid atheist heart warms to the portrayal of corrupted religious extremism. And it's all with Arab influences to boot!

    4) The backgrounds and portraits are pretty nice, no complaints there. The battle-view - not so much but it's not too bad.

    5) You definitely need to include WAIT command in battle. Also, maybe it's flash but the combat animations are quite slow - well, not really animations as the enemies just teleport but your guys move slowly and the beginning/ending takes annoyingly long. Good call with the keyboard shortcuts, they are always useful.

    6) Griffin seems allrighty sort of fellow so far while Rahel is suitably bitchy. But if this game is as traditional, ie cliche, as it seems to be, I'm guess she'll fall for the Hero at some point? Please, don't make it so! Amman looks like the classic old guy while Set is the annoying dough-faced kid. Say I'm wrong and it's not that obvious!

    7) Combat is far too simple. Why is there no diagonal movement? Why my telepathic attacks have only touching range? Why the bow-woman cannot target anything else but squares 2 and 3 in front of her? Why two members of my team cannot switch places if they have movement points left? Either you do the FF-thing where positioning doesn't matter or you do a grid-based one which is actually tactical but then you have to offer some options. It's good that you can change the order and initial formation of the party and that backstabbing does little more damage but that's not enough :/ Also, moving AFTER attacking, definitely needed.
    - So WAIT, GUARD, SWITCH these would improve the combat a lot. Then, targeting by mouse, ie click on enemy and if its on range, the char would do its default action.

    8) Apparently I'm doomed to play in a window, since that makes it run slightly better. Walking around is still painful :( Stupid flash.

    9) Little bug with the first side-quest, the married couple and the sister. When I try to inform her that I killed the husband, she jumps over any response and ends up asking me how I liked the reward, which she never game me. The quest doesn't get completed either, since when talking to her again, she keeps asking about the husband.

    10) Nobody likes invisible walls. If you want to build a town for the player to explore, then it should be a real town so you could use fences or walls. Personally, I wouldn't mind if you forgot the exploring, since it's annoyingly slow thanks to Flash - market especially was killing me - and you yourself admitted that creating it takes a long time. How about if you scratch the exploration and use still images instead? You could have pictures, like in Betrayal at Krondor, where the player clicks various items/characters on screen to interact with them and for bigger areas you could have a map - so instead of clumsily walking from the hideout to the docks and the tavern, I could just click "harbour" on the map and it would show a picture of piers and a sea-side tavern, with this shady character looming in the alley. There I could click either the tavern or the character and suitable dialogue screen would pop up. Especially since I like your hand-drawn 2d-art.

    I guess that's it. There's potential here but I think you would be well served in concentrating more into key-areas, instead of trying to bite everythngl; branching conversations are useless if they always lead to same conclusion - exploration is useless if its dull and pointless - combat gets boring if there aren't many options and its not lethal, etc. For example, JA2 has plenty of combat but knowing that all the time you are facing a real risk of getting your valuable mercenary killed helps alleviating boredom. There is no such risk in here - Griffin can easily dispatch multitude of enemies and even if they player somehow gets him seriously injured, the mind shield thing easily recuperates 10-20 points to him, while the enemies are hard-pressed to hurt him for around ~6 per round. No risk, no danger, no excitement.

    I also think that there's a real danger here that the combat turns into similar shitty filler that it is in the Bioware stuff that you don't like - if combat is fun&engaging, it' allright to have lots of it BUT if it's boring and repetive, it's better have as little of it as possible.

    Hope this is at least somewhat helpful to you. I don't mean to piss over your heart&dreams here, just my views on how to make your game more appealing to myself.

    Edit: horrible typo's and grammar-rape.
     
    ^ Top  
  20. Awor Szurkrarz Arcane In My Safe Space

    Awor Szurkrarz
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Parrots:
    21,906
    Codex 2012
    But does it feature tastefully done rape?
     
    ^ Top  
  21. GarfunkeL Racism Expert

    GarfunkeL
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Parrots:
    15,200
    Location:
    Insert clever insult here
    Not that I noticed, no :(
     
    ^ Top  
  22. Awor Szurkrarz Arcane In My Safe Space

    Awor Szurkrarz
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Parrots:
    21,906
    Codex 2012
    Oh :( .
     
    ^ Top  
  23. Fez Erudite

    Fez
    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    Parrots:
    7,954
    The clichéd characters didn't help the story much or avoid it all feeling predictable, as if I've already played it. That kind of thing cripples a story early on.

    Combat is boring because there's nothing unique or special along with the limited options. It is VERY simplistic with only the most basic options and tactics available. It feels like the minimum effort has been done to make it. This makes it more boring. I've played and enjoyed a ton of turn based strategy combat games and RPGs and this one is uninspired. Bland. That makes the combat feel like a tiresome chore before getting on to the rest of it instead of it being a highlight. FF Tactics shows a better example of JRPG strategy combat, but there are tons of turn based strategy and combat games (some more RPG and others more tactics/strategy games) to take inspiration from. I'd be happy enough even if you just mashed together the best from all you could find rather than invent it all anew.

    What makes this game special or unique in each area? This is something to consider. I thought the whole point of making your own game without a publisher was to make something new, special and different. The "dream game/project", not another cheap copy of what has gone before. Take this as encouraging you to be more daring and to try new things with the project, not to discourage you from continuing at all.

    I'd second the previous suggestion about using still images and text instead of the current navigation system. I've seen it work well in other games and it would also remove much of the problems with the current set up (flash issues, slowness, ugly vectors, etc.).

    Also this.
     
    ^ Top  
  24. Craig Stern Sinister Design Developer

    Craig Stern
    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Parrots:
    255
    Location:
    Chicago
    Okay, this is useful stuff, guys. Thank you very much! GarfunkeL, in particular, I appreciate the detailed feedback.

    There is only one more thing I'd like to know: How far have you guys gotten in the game? I'm guessing that you guys aren't past the Azma fight yet--once that battle is done, you get a trainer and can start learning new attacks. (There are several dozen in-game as of right now.)
     
    ^ Top  

(buying stuff via the above buttons helps us pay the hosting bills, thanks!)