Just want to say, as this is my first thread, I love the game! You folks have really put something together that, in time, could rival or possibly even surpass its predecessor! Now before I begin, it's important to state here that I'm new to the game. My highest level is 18. Actually, I've got about 15 Po... monsters hovering between 14 and 18. Also take into consideration that I've been playing Pokemon for the last decade. I've gone to competitions, and even built local tournament groups for it. I'm... a fan. So, this all might make for a pretty large bias.
Ok! So after several hours of blind trial-and-error fighting and leveling up, I've noticed a few discrepancies. Things which separate this game greatly from a certain "P" game. Sadly, these are not good things. Really, I can break all my complaints down into two issues. Display, and Algorithm.
- I notice that the element type of each monster isn't listed in their details while in-game. I have to go to the pokedex every time I wish to learn a monster's element, but I do not require this for their current moves or their stat spread? seems a little backwards. I wouldn't complain about an issue like that, were all the monsters to resemble their elemental backgrounds enough for a new player to easily discern the type, but I don't want to hinder the artists you've hired on. I love their work, and I've got no problems having to guess at a monster's element from the picture alone.
- I would also prefer a paneling effect with the game window. movement is staggered, frame by frame, when it could be fluid up to a point, where it would switch to a new panel of the map. it already does this a small bit, but it would be nice to have it be a locked thing. I don't need the camera struggling to keep my character in the center square.
- I would like to see a more centralized display for combat effects. The information is all there, but it's not streamlined. My eyes don't gravitate to the information as effects occur. Since there's no animation during a battle sequence, I find myself rapid-firing the mouse clicks to complete a battle, not realizing that I've been poisoned! My deaths come in the form of fine-print under the attack section. Again, this isn't a severe issue, but it really helps keep gaming momentum up when everything is laid-out in a way that quick to notice and easy to read.
Algorithm (Gameplay) Issues:
- The different types of monsters really make your gaming experience. There's no way you're going to go through the game with only a handful of monsters and come out successful. Were I to relate this to pokemon, I could in theory, use the same 6 pokemon to progress from beginning to end with only a few exceptions for HM use. Now, I don't really want to do that, but I know that the option is available. Here, that option is nonexistent. Element types have such a rock-paper-scissors mechanic, that there's no way a lv.10 water type could defeat a lv.5 grass type, should that grass type have a grass-based attack. The damage ratio is so skewed to elemental superiority, that I am forced to only fight enemies who are weak to my monsters. an element-neutral battle can go in my favor, but i find that this is more of a coin toss than anything else. but perhaps this is for a number of reasons. Hell, perhaps this kind of gameplay is intentional! After all, it is alleviated with the fact that capturing a monster is not only easy, (I've thus far, had a 97% catch rate) but inexpensive. I could start the game off and after 5 wins, purchace 10 more monster cubes.
- the critical hits seem a little outrageous. Well, not a little. I've 1hko-ed higher level enemies, and I've been 1hko-ed by lower level enemies. i.e.: my Lv.7 Osipue critted a lv.14 Flickser for over 80 points of damage. I have yet to see any monster that wouldn't kill instantly. Perhaps having a crit rate at 4% is the reason for this, but it still feels disorienting and undesired as a player. An instant kill is tough to look at in a turn-based rpg like this, especially when I've done no special training or acquired any item that would make it seem justified. It's a jarring feeling, really. This is the same as the element issue. Dealing too much or too little damage per turn can make the battling feel lopsided, and unwieldy to your players. A balance here must be struck!
- Stat Deviancy: While I really like the idea of seeing the same monster several times over, each with largly different stats, I fear that this variability only encourages an offset to the balance of combat. I know that each monster has a certain limit placed on their stats, but at my current level, it is difficult to see evidence of this. I am not very familiar with the system from a metagame standpoint, so there's still a lot I'll need to learn about how and why each individual monster of the same type has such large stat differences.
I want to reference Pokemon here. Their combat algorithms, while lengthy and difficult to calculate for, works. It works REALLY well. It's one of the main reasons the franchise hasn't changed very much since it started, over a decade ago. It might be a tortuous task, but building a system of calculations to allow for a more balanced feel WILL be worth it.
Now, before I start getting hate-mail from everyone on here for bashing the system, know that I recognize where I stand in the community here. I'm well-aware that the gameplay can drastically change, and possibly even balance itself out, as I reach a higher level (though I doubt it). I know that I'm a nobody who just picked up the game, and it's out-of-line for me to be acting like I know what's best for a game I've only out 8-10 hours into, but I don't suggest any of this because I like feeling important or self-righteous. I want to see this game succeed. I've kept my eyes open for an online Pokemon title. I mean, seriously. This type of game lends itself to the MMO arena. I'm not going to quit playing the game. I'm going to stay online for as long as it remains fun. Keep up the good work fellas! I look forward to seeing your finished work, and until then, I'll continue to advertise and support the Monster MMO!
(This post was last modified: 04-03-2012 06:52 AM by orboknown.)