Does RPG mean anything anymore?

Discussion in 'General Gaming and Hardware Forum' started by NMLevesque, Sep 20, 2017.

  1. NMLevesque

    NMLevesque Commie Ghost

    Jul 2, 2016
    Lately it seems that people have latch onto the idea of "rpg elements", to characterize rpgs. They say that games with levels up and skill trees, that offer customization are rpgs. I thought rpgs allowed players to decide what their role is, not just at a character selection screen but during the game. Whereas games that decide who you are, and especially that don't let you define who you are beyond that do not qualify. I think the prevalence of false choices is what has made this so confusing for people. It's style to some, rather than substance. So much so that the general idea of a roleplaying game has become one where 'you play a role'. As though that didn't include basically every game ever made. Oh look I'm Pacman, I'm playing the role of Pacman...great. As opposed to a game where you create/choose your role. Which is why I would prefer if rpgs were called rcgs instead. There's less room for confusion. Do you create and/or choose your role, or are you just playing one?

    Mass Effect is a low degree rpg because you get a few options for your backstory (e.g spacer, sole survivor, engineer), and get meaningful--albeit binary choices to make along the way. You are always Shepard, you are always a soldier (by any other name, and sometimes a double soldier), you are always trying to save the galaxy. Fallout let you create and choose your role quite thoroughly. Fo4 makes you a soldier or a lawyer, married with a son that you care about, and the build system is a one size fits all character generator--that if given enough time makes every character identical beyond their look. Your only real options beyond 'yes/sarcastic yes' are 'no I don't want to do this part of the game' and 'I'm going to cross you' (murder time)...
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  2. a721402

    a721402 I'm officially doomed.

    Mar 29, 2016
    What RPG mean to you is more important than what RPG mean to those AAA company.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  3. Walpknut

    Walpknut Testament to the ghoul lifespan

    Dec 30, 2010
    Rocket propelled grenade.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 8
  4. Risewild

    Risewild Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!
    Modder Orderite

    Jun 14, 2014
    I am old and I had the pleasure of playing all types of RPGs around. I Started with AD&D P&P (or Tabletop like some prefer to call it), played versions 3 and 3.5 D&D (as a player and a DM), played Star Wars D20 P&P, dabbled a bit in World of Darkness P&P, played the first cRPG games, played the first jRPG games, played the first Tactical RPG games, played the first action RPG games, and kept playing those genres until now (so I played the games and kept up to date on them, always playing the newer ones when they would be released, for consoles and PC). But I stopped being updated around 10 years ago.
    I grew up playing RPGs and I also made a lot of RPG stuff as a hobby in the past (for my DM days). It was always my favorite gaming genre and the ultimate experience you can have in RPG is without a doubt playing a nice P&P with good friends (computers and consoles just can't compete with that).

    I define a RPG by what I experienced most of my life playing in all of their forms (P&P, cRPG, jRPG, tRPG, etc). I once wrote a wall of text here about what I consider is a RPG, and I don't want to repeat myself so I will just quote it down below:

    Now, you mention that a RPG needs good choices and being able to influence a character the way we want to. That is not really true. Like I mentioned in my quote, that is what enriches the RPGs for you. There are many RPGs that do not even give you choices, but they are still RPGs. For example the first D&D system that was created, was just a battle game. You would have a character sheet with stats and abilities and you would use a figurine or token on a squared grid to fight monsters and other characters. That was it, you didn't have stories or even a world, you just had your character and had to use it's stats to fight and survive enemies. This system (it was called Chainmail) is what D&D was before it evolved into what we know now. We only got a universe and lore in D&D when the creators decided to make it more appealing for the public so they could commercialize it.
    There are also cRPGs that do not give you much or any choice, and they are definitely also cRPGs, for example you have the "recent" game Dungeon Rats, you don't have much choice in that game, it is basically just battle after battle, you only choose which allies you want to have in your party.

    The RPG genre is based on it's core elements (like any other game genre), people like me who have been playing the genre for decades can see right away what is or is not a RPG, just as someone who have been playing RTS or Platformers can identify those games right away.
    The problem is that people these days don't grew up playing actual RPGs, and companies pushing games that are not RPGs but have RPG elements and then call then RPGs doesn't help at all.

    They should make a new gaming genre called nRPG (not RPG) for example and just stick it on games. Fallout 4 Action nRPG Open World game.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  5. Hassknecht

    Hassknecht For hate's sake Admin Orderite

    Aug 16, 2010
    Meh, backronyms. It's ручной противотанковый гранатомёт, actually ;)
    Moved the thread, btw., has nothing explicitly to do with Fallout and all with General Gaming.
     
  6. Walpknut

    Walpknut Testament to the ghoul lifespan

    Dec 30, 2010
    Is that a Pierogi flavor?
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  7. R.Graves

    R.Graves Confirmed Retard

    Apr 21, 2016
    The following genres have lost all meaning

    stealth. Honeslty what does this genre have to work with now? Dishonered? Bah. That's an action game with stealth as a mere suggestion.

    Survival horror. Has become stealth to some degree. The outlasts and alien isolations. However games like the evil within have elements of stealth and a shooter. Dead space and resident evil 4-6 and fear are shooters. Honestly what the fuck is going on with this sub genre its lost all meaning. Just having monsters in your game seems to be enough to brand it survival horror.

    And to answer the thread...
    Rpg. People seem to think that skill treed and leveling up alone make an rpg. I've literally met people who classify borderlands as an rpg. Fucking hopeless. In my mind an rpg has to at least try to emulate d&d in at least a few aspects. Not fps dungeon crawling shoot and looters.
     
  8. NMLevesque

    NMLevesque Commie Ghost

    Jul 2, 2016
    If that's the case then it never meant much of anything. That's kind of sad actually. It would mean that most RPGs don't offer anything beyond a type of mechanic. I guess I'll just have to somehow magically popularize the idea of an RCG then. Though it already seems to be what most Fallout fans on NMA want, and view as a critical component of the franchise--along with other gamers. Now that I think about it that kind of clears things up for me a bit. I mostly want games where I can create/choose my role, not necessarily ones that have stat/value based interactions.
     
  9. Walpknut

    Walpknut Testament to the ghoul lifespan

    Dec 30, 2010
    All genres are defined by their mechanics. Story based stuff can be applied to any genre, in fact choices and consequences are more an element of text adventures. An RPG is more about how the player can functionally build their character and role within a set of working mechanics that's why character sheets and dice exist. D&D started as a combat based game.

    Pokemon more than offers the mechanical aspect of an rpg experience on a competitive setting. You can't get more choice and consequence than 800+ available units with their own unique stats and learnsets that can be customized to fill different roles within a party to create the best synergy possible. Storywise tho... it's a linear game for kids, so don't play them for the narrative.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2017
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  10. MPPlantOfficial

    MPPlantOfficial First time out of the vault

    Aug 24, 2017
    Here's a pretty cool discussion of a podcast I used to listen to:
    http://bloodgodpod.libsyn.com/axe-of-the-blood-episode-1-what-is-an-rpg

    In one episode where Kat was interviewing David Craddock (Diablo) I believe, they were joking about how Madden was an RPG because of the amount RPG elements it contained and how it allows you a degree of control with your character's career.
     
  11. MPPlantOfficial

    MPPlantOfficial First time out of the vault

    Aug 24, 2017
    Don't worry, friend. I will singlehandedly restore the Survival Horror genre to its former glory
    ; )
     
  12. Kohno

    Kohno A Smooth-Skin

    Jul 30, 2009
    Sure it does, people misusing or misunderstanding it doesn't erase the purpose.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  13. NMLevesque

    NMLevesque Commie Ghost

    Jul 2, 2016
    Some are defined by mechanics, such as platformers. However as we can't define the full set of mechanics that would constitute 'stealth' or 'horror', that means we can't define them by the presence or absence of specific mechanics--but rather by what those mechanics accomplish. This is also seen in how mechanics can be a part of many different genres, individually. Text based games can be in any number of different genres, so its not specific to any of them. There are also concepts that have nothing to do with any specific mechanics, but with the story. E.g 'mystery', or 'puzzle solving' (given how broad and abstract it is, and the potential for any type of gameplay to be structured as one).

    "Story based stuff can be applied to any genre, in fact choices and consequences are more an element of text adventures."

    Stories that induce horror are always by definition horror stories. Stories that are about mysteries are always of the mystery genre. They may however be other things additionally. Such as the common combination of horror mystery. You don't need text to have choices and consequences so I'm not sure what you're trying to say there.

    "An RPG is more about how the player can functionally build their character and role within a set of working mechanics that's why character sheets and dice exist. D&D started as a combat based game."

    Stats are certainly one way that players can be given the ability to create/choose their own role--but they don't necessarily achieve that goal.

    "Pokemon more than offers the mechanical aspect of an rpg experience on a competitive setting. You can't get more choice and consequence than 800+ available units with their own unique stats and learnsets that can be customized to fill different roles within a party to create the best synergy possible. Storywise tho... it's a linear game for kids, so don't play them for the narrative."

    Filling a role is a bit different than choosing one or creating it. I also don't see how choosing who fills a role provides any meaningful consequence. Choosing how you do something isn't in of itself the consequence of a choice, it's just the choice. The results, the aftereffects, how others react would be consequences of choices.
     
  14. Black Angel

    Black Angel Grand Inquisitor of the Ordo Hereticus

    Mar 21, 2016
    You're saying that, as if the two different things are completely separate and unrelated in RPGs.

    RPGs, not 'RPGs', would actually allows you to create/choose your role based on stat/value-based interactions. If you only have the former it would ended up with LARPing simulator (and if you mean by that that you can choose a choice without having to depend on stats and skills, CYOA), while if you only have the latter it can be RPGs like the old days known (see Risewild's explanation on the origins of D&D, and P&P in general being rooted in wargames). But who says we can only have one but not the other? Again, I repeat, RPGs allows the players to create/choose their role based on stat/value-based interactions.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  15. ThatZenoGuy

    ThatZenoGuy Residential Zealous Evolved Nano Organism

    Nov 8, 2016
    I think RPG nowadays is meaningless, as simply having damage numbers makes a game "RPG" nowadays, its absurd.

    I wish it had meaning though.
     
  16. Walpknut

    Walpknut Testament to the ghoul lifespan

    Dec 30, 2010
    I am guessing you have never played competitive Pokemon. Because you can customize stat distribution and the different sets each pokemon is known to run within the meta is part of running that mon. Mind games are common and entire matches can be lost because of wrong choices (and no, not rock paper scissors) every turn is a continuous choice and consequence and because Pokemon is fast paced you seldomly get the chance of correcting a bad play and even a pre-game choice can fuck you over if among the 3-4 mons you chose to bring you didn't bring a counter to a mon on your opponent's team or if you chose a certain pokemon to counter a specific pokemon in your opponent's team and they simply chose not to bring that pokemon, there are also all the common team archetypes, Stall, Trick Room, Weather Teams, Flinch teams, Annoyers etc.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  17. Hassknecht

    Hassknecht For hate's sake Admin Orderite

    Aug 16, 2010
    I was going to ask why competitive Pokemon is even a thing, but then I remembered that competitive vaping is also a thing.
    And, of course, Japan is a thing.

    As you were, gentlemen.
     
  18. Mohamed2001

    Mohamed2001 HATE NEWSPAPERS

    Jan 28, 2013
    Where's that "what the fuck is this for a shit?" button?
     
  19. NMLevesque

    NMLevesque Commie Ghost

    Jul 2, 2016
    They're not unrelated, I just don't think stat based interactions necessarily allow one to create/choose their role.
    Tactics/strategy =/= roleplaying
     
  20. ThatZenoGuy

    ThatZenoGuy Residential Zealous Evolved Nano Organism

    Nov 8, 2016
    IMO a good roleplaying game uses the game's mechanics to allow you to make your role.

    If your game is so devoid of roleplaying mechanics that you must put stupid arbritarary limitations like 'don't run everywhere' to roleplay, your game has failed.

    By the standards of Oblivion/Skyrim roleplayers, you could do the same in CoD.
     
    • [Like] [Like] x 2