do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Games with gameplay beside the story: raising your skills, map systems, life simulations, etc

do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

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jack1974
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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by jack1974 » Sun Sep 11, 2016 11:30 am

Yes basically I want to make sure that if I spend a few weeks doing the stat raising, it's at least worth it! Otherwise, I surely don't have shortage of other games to work on :mrgreen:
Maybe for this game will still keep both options (play in VN/stat raising) but will think about it.

About the double post, yes new accounts must be approved by me before their posts are live :)

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Pace675
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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by Pace675 » Sun Sep 11, 2016 12:35 pm

Troyen wrote: Magical Diary is probably the only stat raising game where I actually liked the mechanic. You had to balance your time between five schools of magic, the more you progressed in one the more spells you learned which gave you different ways to solve the exam puzzles and sometimes different interactions with the teachers.

All the other stat raising games you essentially just spam whatever activity your love interest enjoys. It's boring because there's no gameplay involved - you just watch a number randomly grow larger or smaller based on whether the game decided you "failed" at surfing the internet.

And honestly, I find it detracts from the story sometimes. Take C-14 for an example. Picking certain activities on certain days can show different scenes so you'd normally get a different experience replaying the game just from all the possible interactions with the other characters, but even though you can end the game with four hearts on a relationship, if you didn't spend most of your time on their specific activity, you don't get a good ending. It takes away from the flexibility of the planner and the replayability of exploring different combinations. (That said, I did find the cave minigame in C-14 to be fun. If only the stats had an effect on the minigames so they didn't feel like two independent systems.)
Aye Magical Diaries is a fun game and yes learning new spells which alter the way you can finish the magic test was a brilliant thing to do and a way to make stat building not tedious.

About C-14 (I loved it) but I do hate how you must schedule certain things on certain day to build relationships. If there was no walk-through it would be nigh impossible to figure out what to do when (There is little to no textual clues on what to do when to peruse your love interests) , and that makes things annoying too. You miss out on a romance because you did not do activity X on days Y and Z is plain silly. Now if there are clues that the romance interest is doing something on those days then it is fine.

I am fine with random encounters but when they affect the MCs final ending, its just annoying.

*Shivers ate the thought of the cave mini game* You are a brave soul *flees in horror*

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Miakoda
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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by Miakoda » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:48 pm

For me, it depends on the game and what the stats are used for. For example, in Long Live the Queen, it feels necessary to be a stat game since you are confronted by a wide variety of situations, and how else to account for it?

Of course, I think that is the thing...are the stats necessary? For many dating sims, you are just trying to reach an arbitrary value, but it does little further good.

Now, if those stats unlock something...say reach a specific value, and a dialogue/encounter appears, then that's fine. In that case, even if a stat works as a counter, then its fine.

And it isn't like you can't have stats serve multiple things. In the Fairbrook series, the money you have can affect what epilogue you get, but it is also used to buy seeds, etc.

In Always Remember Me, you can even use the money to buy things (even if it makes game play easier...and its a mechanic I hope to include in Love Bites as well).

I can even understand having a 'tired' stat, if you wish to have someone simulate working or what have you.

But other stats, like in Roommates, didn't do much else other than to see whether you hit a specific ending or not. In that case, it might as well be a straight forward visual novel.

Now, I didn't mind the stats in Heileen 3 quite as much. You could pursue careers instead of a love interest to get a special ending...and along the way, you would get an occasional special dialogue. If I had a complaint in this instance, I would say I would hope the stats would raise faster.

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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by Katicflis » Tue Sep 13, 2016 4:28 pm

The only stat raising games where the stat raising element felt really worthwhile were Long Live the Queen and Magical diary. Long Live the Queen REALLY embraced having different storypaths and different endings based on how you played -- and in a really interesting way that encouraged multiple playthroughs. I feel like Heileen 3 tried to do this, but had multiple issues. Playthroughts took too long in heileen 3 so the small endings didn't seem worth the effort. Not to mention failing the pass/fail relationship tests were just brutal(Ok Im sorry I was dumb enough to want Heileen to be a nice girl while trying to date Sebastian -- guess I gotta replay 300+ days of stat raising to get it right. Then I failed Juliet's stat raising and I dont even know why, but I was done at that point). Heileen 3 felt like a chore to play. Also Long Live the Queen gives you hints as to why you are/aren't passing certain storyline checks, so for replays you can adjust if you're interested in something you missed. But again, its a game with so many branches that its not the end of the world if you miss one thing(or there's multiple ways to pass a check). Heileen 3's meaningful checks are the relationship tests, and its a serious punishment to fail them.

And Magical Dairy was just fun because you got to experiment with skills and dungeon paths with skills, but the stats didnt really effect the dating and failing tests didnt instantly end the game either.

But the simplistic stat-building games, where you just pass/fail relationship checks, are kinda boring to play. I deal with the statraising to enjoy the story.

That all said, I really enjoyed C14's minigames. Id much prefer a game to have minigames over plain old stat-raising. :X

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jack1974
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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by jack1974 » Tue Sep 13, 2016 4:40 pm

Thanks for the feedback.
A lot of people mention LLTQ, and yeah in my current games style that system won't work - you need to design the game from scratch to work with choices and most importantly, must be written SHORTLY. There need to be short scenes and the whole game should be short overall but very replayable (with many paths).
Otherwise as you said like in Heileen 3 becomes a chore to raise the stats and/or to replay the various scenes :)
Maybe in future I'll do a game like that though!

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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by pahldus » Thu Sep 15, 2016 1:26 am

Just want to say that Magical Diary really did it best in my opinion.

Like others have said, if the stat is just there to reach a relationship ending, it is not worth it and makes a game utterly boring, ie Sunrider Academy. It took so long to play through each path I had to take weeks between play sessions. It was just a ton of set the schedule, and scum save or else fail and start all over. That kind of gameplay is tedious at best, and a downright hideous attempt to cover the fact your game has a real lack of depth.

So unless the stat raising has another impact other than relationships, I would say VN is the way to go.

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jack1974
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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by jack1974 » Thu Sep 15, 2016 6:51 am

Very interesting to me. I have to say that I agree on everything said so far. Probably the fact that I never made a "good" VN (with good production values, writing, etc) skewed a bit my view/perspective.

I think it's possible to make an interesting dating sim: however, it requires a lot of time and planning. It shouldn't just be "raise 1 or 2 stats to get best ending with this character" because the majority of people find it boring (not everyone, the fact that in the poll some people voted OK, means they like it).

But a good stat raising should have the stats impact a lot of other things: skill checks, unlock different dialogues or branches of a story, etc.
Stuff like that though requires careful planning and takes a LOT of time to do it well.

Probably it's better to either do it "properly" like I said above, or not do it at all, if then it has to be just a grindfest, or if the ONLY impact it has is in the different endings.

S**t, now I don't know what to do with Never Forget Me. The visual novel part is basically ready this week :lol:

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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by Amberbaum » Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:24 am

jack1974 wrote: Probably it's better to either do it "properly" like I said above, or not do it at all, if then it has to be just a grindfest, or if the ONLY impact it has is in the different endings.

S**t, now I don't know what to do with Never Forget Me. The visual novel part is basically ready this week :lol:
Yeah, it's as you said. Either you do it properly or don't do it at all. You might want to collect more data before you want to do it properly. Because if you put so much time and effort in such a game then the rest has to work too. The last thing someone want a commercial project to fail when it was really well done just because something was amiss :( .

So I have to say it again: Magical Diary, LLtQ or 7kpp is the best way to go in terms of stat raising.

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jack1974
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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by jack1974 » Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:26 am

Yes the thing is that those games you mention had the story designed around / at the same time as the mechanics. It's much harder with a "normal story". Anyway, if I allow both VN Mode or dating sim, it shouldn't be a big deal for now (until I find the time to do it properly).
It's a bit like PSCD - people who wanted to play the card game could, those who wanted only to play it as visual novel could as well :)

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Re: do you like stat raising/scheduler system in dating sims?

Post by Amberbaum » Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:42 am

Smart. I really liked how you implemented the story mode in Loren after you finished the game. Different game modus are always appreciated and makes games more accessible for all people or your mood -> "Eh, I just want to breeze though the game without any battles."

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