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Volume 6: Answers from the Readers #2. From Weekly Famitsu Magazine issue #1796

Question: Tell me about the RPG you've made (or tried to make)

—Himawari's RPG—

I had a teacher I hated in middle school so I thought about making an RPG with them as the weakest boss. As I worked on the setting it was pretty fun, I made other enemies based on teachers who had strong personalities, my friends were the heroes, I made some rivals and even came up with a plot. However when it came to actually making it into a real game the software I used (GameMaker) was really difficult as there weren't any easy to understand tutorials in Japanese, so I gave up...

—Toby's Response—

I laughed out loud reading this! This is just the kind of story I was looking for!

Please become the president of a AAA game studio that makes blockbuster games with a ton of advertisements. Use all 7 of the Playstation 7's GPUs to render you and your middle school friends (all shown as hyper muscular adults, but still a little short) defeating your teachers!

The size of the world should be on par with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, but since it's still set at a school you might have to add some additional buildings to the school to reach that scale. I think the player's attacks should mainly be motion-captured professional wrestling moves, however there should still be some special skills such as the "Ninja Art: Blackboard Erasing Jutsu" which allows you to teleport during the distraction caused by the chalk dust when slamming the two erasers together.

Also the game should have multiple endings, it might be nice to have a "Take all the classes ending" where you actually take a lot of classes and the player learns a lot. However, if you take this route one of your friends will become a delinquent and will appear as the final boss, and you'll have to defeat them along with everyone else.

Ah, this would be awesome! I really wish someone would make a game like this...

—Washi's RPG—

I was obsessed with RPG Maker 3 as a kid. It was on the first Playstation and had a vast library of assets and cool music, it made me excited to make my own games. When I read Toby's last column, memories of that time came rushing back to me.

Back then I would invite friends over and try to put them in the game as characters. I remember it taking over an hour just to input the name of a single character. These days games have the ability to easily convert hiragana to kanji but back then on the Playstation such a function didn't exist. Because of this, putting kanji into RPG Maker 3 required using the D-pad and buttons. I remember that when you selected the first hiragana in the reading, dozens of kanji would appear. However since kanji used in names would have their own unique readings, I often didn't know which character to use. As a result my friend and I would just stare at the screen playing the game of finding the right kanji. I realize now that there was no real need to use their real names but, I didn't really think about it then and was pretty stubborn about using their real names.

By the way, we never really finished the characters for that game. When RPG Maker 2000 released it allowed you to input kanji using a keyboard and IME. It was amazing to finally be able to swiftly input dialog into the scenes thanks to the advancement of technology. But even with RPG Maker 2000, the game was never finished... After all, it was more fun to come up with ideas for the game.

—Toby's Response—

RPG Maker 3! Wow, that takes me back~ The English version didn't have kanji but inputting text was still a pain. Like sweating buckets while wearing a straw hat working in the field. It took me around 30 minutes to finish a single text box... When you're a kid it's easy to think "I can make something like a game!" It's like finding a 100 yen coin as a kid and thinking you're loaded, but as an adult you realize you can't even afford a subscription to a certain weekly gaming magazine (why don't I just say the name??) Even now I also agree that brainstorming ideas is definitely the most fun part.

—Yellow Calcium's RPG—

I once wanted to make an RPG using Scratch. In which a prince is stranded and loses their memory, and goes on to battling monsters. I had planned out around 10 games but in reality I was only able to complete the beginning of the first one, so it was a pretty sad game as a result. I eventually had to focus on other things like graduating or something so I had to drop those projects. Looking back and reading the last column I realize that I should have focused more on one game at a time. I thought it would be interesting to have a slime as a rather powerful boss that the player would have to seek the help of an old man to defeat. What nice memories...

—Toby's Response—

Making an RPG in Scratch or GameMaker is actually really difficult. Most people who take on the challenge of making one tend to recommend using RPG Maker or some other template. But even trying without one is really impressive! I think having a powerful slime boss is a really interesting idea! In the game was there dialog like this?

Village Elder: Defeat that slime for me would you?

Hero: I'll see what I can do.

(The hero goes to challenge the slime but can't win)

Hero: What the heck? It's tough...

(Returns to the elder)

Hero: I just couldn't do it.

Village Elder: What?! Fine...

(Elder Defeats the Slime and levels up!)

Awakened Elder: Finally, I have realized my true power.

With this, there's no need for a hero in this world. There's nothing that can stand in my way.

(Elder begins to go on a rampage, marking the beginning of his reign of terror upon the land.)

Surviving slime family: Please defeat the elder for us.

Hero: I'll see what I can do. (And so the true adventure begins...!)

—Golden Radish's RPG—

When I was 10 I played the RPG Maker that was released for DS. I played it a ton but only ever finished one game, it was a simple RPG called "Money is Everything" There wasn't any opening to the game, the player was just thrown into a city full of enemies, a really ridiculous amount of encounters. Even if they were defeated they didn't drop any experience or money, they'd only drop an item called "Golden Radish" (I can't remember if it was a radish in particular, but it was some vegetable)

After leaving the city, there was a shopping district which allowed the player to sell their radishes before the final boss. You could then use the money to buy skills and HP. Struggling in the city and getting a good pay off for it was a pretty good feeling. After that the player just beats the final boss and the game ends. At least that's all I remember about it. Reading about Toby's brother's grand RPG brought back memories of working on that game. Thanks for letting me read such an interesting article!

—Toby's Response—

That's great! Getting vegetables instead of experience or money would be a lot more healthy. Nintendo should consider making a controller that you can wear on your mouth. With that they could make a RPG in a similar vein as Ring Fit Adventure. Like if you eat a bunch of vegetables the controller would measure that and you'd grow stronger in the game. Maybe they could even make one for your toilet, and if something goes wrong in there it'd have the player be poisoned in the game. If this game was run at RTA in Japan I wonder if Takeru Kobayashi, the competitive eater, would run the game.

—Kankon's RPG—

When I was a kid the first set of Pokemon cards were coming out and everyone played with them instead of the actual games. My friends and I would spend everyday battling each other seriously. I thought, "If this was a manga, no, an anime... no, a RPG! That would be interesting!" I jotted down what the setting would be in my notebook, in the game world the Pokemon would jump out from the cards and fight for real. I created new characters with their own names for my friends and wrote and wrote for months. One day out of the blue I got really embarrassed about having the notebook so I wrapped it up in tape and threw it away. I want to read it again now...

—Toby's Response—

Don't worry about it! I know that the dreams of a child are precious so I dug that notebook out from the trash. I'm reading it now actually, it's really interesting! The tape was a pain to get off, though. You shouldn't wrap it up like that from now on. I had to have your friends summon Pikachu from one of the cards to use iron tail 10 times just to get it off! (But really everyone has those sorts of thoughts as a kid right? Like thinking about what if Pokemon were real. I remember having similar daydreams as a kid ^^)

By the way, what do you think about Yu-Gi-Oh?

*To everyone who sent in responses: When your game gets published in Famitsu, let's go to Denny's together! It'll be on me, promise!

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