Justin here, just thought I’d take a minute to explain a few things about RPG Maker VX Ace. Many of you out there you may be familiar with this program; you may even use it yourself. Others… “What the crap is RPG Maker?”
The title says it all: it’s a program specifically designed to build classic 2-D RPGs. RPG Maker has come a long way- no, a very long way over the years and has proven itself to be an incredibly powerful yet simple-to-use game-making program.
VX Ace runs on the Ruby engine. Though it’s setup for click-drag-drop formatting to make it super easy for beginners, you can completely edit the code or add additional sub-scripts to help shape or enhance the game. This, of course, can throw a monkey wrench into the process.
I myself am a hobbyist, though when I sit down and work at something, I do it to the full. No shortcuts, no blind eye to minor bugs or whatever just because I can’t figure it out atm or don’t necessarily feel like fixing it at that time. My approach and efforts into The Lotus War are similar to my approach when I make music: I tweak, tune, and obsess until it feels just right.
That being said here are a few things to know about VX Ace…
Stand alone, the program is awesome. It comes with plenty of resources to build all kinds of varying maps and styles. Right out of the box it gives you a preset model of a typical RPG game for items, weapons, spells, animations, battle-backgrounds etc…It even comes with plenty of music, and sound effects.
But as one can imagine with such a simple program at an affordable rate… things can start to become pretty common or even bland when everyone’s project looks the same as the person’s to the left and the right of you.
As stated in some of my previous posts, we used scripts and events to enhance the game with sexier character portraits, all custom drawing. But what really makes the game sort of pop for us is the use of external resources in addition to the standard ones. A big round of applause to Celianna for providing a good portion of these custom tiles. Of course in the commercial route (which we are considering) this starts to get expensive when you add up all of the costs of these extra added resources. Thankfully for hobbyists, many in the RPG Maker community provide scripts and graphics for the amazing low price of… free. Yay!
But like I said, I work at it until I feel it’s right. If I’m having fun then I can be confident that other people who play will too.
RPG Maker VX Ace, on the surface, can allow you to slap a game together in a few hours, a few months, or a few years. It really just depends on what you put into it. There is a bonanza of extra scripts and resources out there on the internet to help shape your game the way you want but it’s up to you to make it feel like your original work.
I highly recommend it to all who haven’t tried it.