Every character has his/her own respective position in a battle. You often have the glass cannon. You have the healer. You have the tank in many cases (though we don’t have aggro in our game). Ranged fighters, etc. You can usually see a character and guess the position.
However, the definition of magic in The Lotus war does change some of the familiar tropes.
For example, Arinnel is a healer, though not by use of magic. As an elf, she innate understanding of plants and has been trained in their medicinal use. An herbalist, she makes potions to heal your party. A fun move/command I want to try and incorporate is that if you run out of potions mid-battle, you can send her to retrieve plants and make some more. She would literally run off screen, then come back with more potions. What might keep you from doing this, is that she will miss several turns, cannot attack during her absence, and you do not want your party to die with her gone. We’re still working out the kinks and whether that will happen or not.
Now, I know that no gaming group can only have one healer. Persona 3, for example, had Mitsuru as a pretty good healer. If I remember correctly, Akihiko, Yukari, and the MC all were decent healers also (it’s been a while, I could be wrong). That’s necessary, because when you have someone like Mitsuru, whose moves you can’t control and who’s constantly trying to “charm” enemies when she should just be attacking them(!!!!!!), sometimes… you don’t want her in the battle rotation.
All of our battlers will be completely under your control, so you don’t need to worry about the above. But what if Arinnel just doesn’t have the HP for a certain battle you want to take on? What if you like this other guy’s attacks waaaay more? What if you just don’t want to use her? See… we can’t only have one healer.
I’m thinking that this happy guy will be an alternative.
As an experienced soldier (amongst other things), Adam’s learned a thing or two about being a battlefield medic. While I don’t think he’ll get quite the oomph out of the healing as Arinnel, he’ll be the next best. But you won’t get him until a little later on.
Taya will be another one that can heal reasonably well, though not as well as Arinnel. However, being a soldier and all, her attacks will have more power.
Other members of your party:
So there you have it in order of attaining: Ren, Taya, Axel, Bron, Arinnel, and Adam, with other characters in the mix for certain quests.
Ren, Bron and Adam will probably have the most HP. Ren, Axel and Adam will probably deal the most DP. Taya, Arinnel and Adam will probably be the best medics. (I think. I’m writing this post without Justin). Bron and Taya will deal moderate attacks as nice support characters, with Taya and Axel having moderate HP to boot. Haven’t figured out Arinnel’s stats quite yet. I’m thinking she has really good HP but less DP… she’ll need it if what she’s mostly good for is healing.
I’m not sure how many battlers Justin will decide to allot your party at any given fight. I think the standard is about 3. And that makes sense, because once you have a complete party, that will be half – and you will almost certainly never have less than that.
Balancing fighters is a difficult science to get right. For example, as I typed the attributes of the characters a couple of paragraphs up, I noticed I was saying Adam’s name a lot for the best things. Good HP, DP, and HP recovery… he’s going to be your go-to guy hands-down if Justin doesn’t have something up his sleeves (but I’m sure he does). Ren needs to be good, as he’s the one battler you can’t remove from your team, the MC, the leader, and the one that we can’t let grate on your nerves for being useless. The others, though… well, let’s just see what Justin has planned (he’ll come out here and blog at some point, really).
Anyways, RPG Makers: what about you? How have you been balancing your fighters? Is it your aim to make players want to use all of your battlers, or are there specific team configurations you hope they prefer?
What about you players? Would you rather have a specific team configuration that clearly works best, or truly make it a crap shoot where it’s up to how you level them/who you use more and your own preference?
(Again, thanks to Holder for the base characters used for the battlers above).