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How a turnbased RPG could make bank on the iphone

09-17-2009, 06:47 AM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 501
How a turnbased RPG could make bank on the iphone

How a turn based RPG could make bank on the iphone

I believe for a turn based RPG to make bank on the iphone/itouch platform it would have to fall in one of the following categories:

A Port-
The port category is a no brainer its a niche market on this platform but there is money to be made, lots of it in fact. The port itself would have to be well designed with controls, menus and gameplay mechanics built from the ground up for a touch screen driven device from a well known company.

Extension of a well established franchise -
This is also a no brainer, if Square-Enix had any love for this platform you would see lots of fully realized extensions of their most popular franchises not a port, not a remake or mash-up but a fully realized new installment to the franchise, which would have insanely high production value and most likely focus more on art style and beauty possibly even bringing back the old school pre-rendered back grounds rather then try and squeeze out 3D "sorta realistic" graphics on a mobile platform.

Original Formula and Concept-

This last category is a gamble a huge risk but as the saying goes "the bigger the risk, the greater the reward" in this aspect you really do have to go big or go bankrupt. It would really take an epic original IP, ongoing franchise to back it up and a new innovative formula that focuses on pushing the boundaries of what the next generation turn based RPGs could be like on the mobile platform.

One of the formulas I proposed was a sort of multi player social media driven MMORPG turn based combat game play experience packaged with mini games and tons of re-playability value as an extension of a well established franchise "Naruto", however I see no reason why it can not be used for an original IP.

The basic idea is that all of the turn based combat is played out online via a generic or story driven matchmaking experience, clan/group vs clan/group tournaments driving a sort of user generated story or a story that evolves depending on user activity and various other modes like generic challenges to friends no matter what clan they belong to and local bluetooth. The single player part of the game is an ongoing collection of mini games that you can purchase via in app transactions to play games that are not only fun but as a way to level up your character when you don't have a wifi connection or dont have much time to get into a grueling PvP RPG battle.

This would all rest on top of a very deep and complex chracter creation and customization system where your character levels up similar to online FPS ranks since you play the turn based RPG part of the game completely online thats how you gain exp points and get loot to purchase items, equipment ect

*the online turn based battle system is a pretty complex and deep system i designed if you interested i would highly suggest looking at the iNaruto Game idea thread for more information

The Second Formula stays true to the old school design for the most part a little more interactive-ness in the turn based concept to get critical hits and defensive bonuses but other then that this formula just pushes the boundaries of how the franchise is distributed and executed by extending the life cycle and last but not least publishing massive amounts of DLC which will be released like bite sized episodes of the game in a fully realized RPG franchise sure its still flexible enough to release "random RPG 2" after "random RPG 1" but it will not be the sort of prequel/sequel movie formula we are used to, i think it should be more like how the naruto series went from Naruto to Naruto Shippuden.

The third formula takes a play out of the Final Fantasy formula where each new game or bite sized DLC episode in this case, has a new cast and a new story to tell and take all of that and connect them together by having them all be told and narrated as if they are memoirs from an old person in the future who is a mystery for the most part of how exactly he/she fits into the whole narrative but this is the guy/girl who is telling stories that you play in the episodes, stories of his/her past that shaped the world in which he/she lives in way on in the future, such a formula would be flexible enough to do what Final Fantasy can't do...have cameos of previous characters that makes sense in the narrative without it feeling like a mash up of totally random stuff just because we feel like it and just because it will sell like crazy Kingdom Hearts style no these cameos would actually make sense in the formula i described above

what do you think?
09-17-2009, 06:48 AM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 501
as far as gameplay this a list of what i would like to see

as far as game play and RPG elements and what the design is like I personally would like to see some of the following features or influences in the game:

-- I like how in Dragon Quest 8 you dont ever get a game over screen when your party gets wiped out instead you respawn in the location where you last save with all of your xp, progress, items equip ect you just lose half of your gold instead

-- I also LOVE skits like in Tales Games and the thumbnail animations I like how they add value to the story telling experience and I particularly like how they are implemented in Tales of Vesperia

-- I like how in dragon quest 8 you can alway key up your party and talk to them to figure out what to do next they are usually very vague but its nice to chat with your party when ever you want sometimes

-- I also like how in Rouge Galaxy when you load a game you are given like a mission briefing on how far you have come wraps up and summarized the story so far and gives you the heads up on what your immediate quest is while the game is loading

-- Love cooking like in the Tales Games I like how you can collect/buy food that can be used to cook meals that regain hp and mp as well as give you a boost in stats in addition to the generic items that can be used

- Loved how you could camp anywhere on the open map for free in Tales of Destiny 2 but it only replenishes hp not mp

-Love how you could key up a map in Tales of Destiny 2 and dig deep into what each store you have already been to is selling and for how much just wish you could order stuff and have it delivered to you if you have a good enough relationship with the owner

-- alchemy love alchemy actually its a love hate relationship because i always sell the uber-important items that can be used for synthesis of ultimate weapons later on in the game but its still an awesome feature to have

-- keep the party limited to the 4 well developed characters type based that are deeply involved in the narrative because i dont want to have to decide which characters to have in my party which for me is always a more difficult choice then it should be cuz i can never make up my mind

- have skill charts similar to how the revelation charts work in rouge galaxy for character customization or licenses points in FF12

-- loved monster arena in dragon quest 8 much better mini game and concept for summons then magic based final fantasy summons and i didnt really like chocobo breeding way tooo time consuming, i really didnt get into the card mini games either so far the one i got into was the monster arena in dragon quest 8

-- speaking of chocobo breeding i loved how on FF7 there where weapons that are insanely hard to beat in fact almost impossible unless u cheat or breed chocobos

-- so in this game the loot/items found, bought or dropped can be food ingredients, generic classic items (potions, ethers and elixirs holy bottles dartk bottles eye drops ect), equipment -- armor which each and every piece of armor changes characters appearance, shield shown in battle, and accessories shown in battle as well, weapons of all kinds, treasure just to collect and trade in for useful items or generic treasure just to sell, and of course alchemy specific items

--monster enemies should drop items only no money no gold just doesn't make sense only humanoid enemies drop gold & items

- loved how tales of vesperia and FF8 (in a round about way) explained or tried to explain why there is always an endless horde of monsters just waiting to attack you right outside of town a clear and logical explanation of why this is the case would be much appreciated

-- love how you can run around as any character you want and sometimes you actually have to change party leader to get more information from NPCs or progress in the story

-- love the mini map in rouge galaxy where it has a nice obvious star of where exactly you have to go in order to progress the story i cant tell you how many times i accidentally continued the story when i wasn't ready or i wasn't prepared and didn't know it was coming

-- love how there is treasure chests that have to be unlocked by obtaining special keys and treasure rooms scattered in towns and dungeons its an awesome way to get gamers to revisit old towns and dungeons when they obtain the keys and its fun to go treasure hunting when revising old towns that you never would have returned to if there wasn't any treasure rooms that could only be unlocked later on in the game

-- I absolutely love how you can call a sabrecat and a flying monster in dragon quest 8 anytime you want or just teleport there with magic much better then catching, buying or renting cars in FF8 or chocobos in the other games

-- love how in dragon quest 8 where you can find lost items and return them to their owners or synthesize items for merchants or NPCs for extra cash or trade them for better items, and i also like how you can collect mini medals to trade in for items this makes the gamer search in every room but i would love to add mini games for lock picking and maybe some karma or realistic consequences and benefits of theft making the player be sneaky

-- love how the towns and NPCs react to day and night and how the mini game like finding rare monsters and story elements can only be done in one of the other

-- im not a particular fan of the silent hero philosophy but i like having options and being able to choose what i get to say positive or negative every now and then

-- difficulty settings would be nice would like to tweak the difficulty settings on top of a good steady pace and slow increase in difficulty as you level up I kinda liked how in FF8 the monsters would kinda level up with you but emphasis on kinda..

-- and play thru the game with previous experience and equipment, items to unlock new stuff and different endings and secret treasures kinda like how Resident Evil does it but applied to an RPG

-i also wish how if you sell/buy from a specific merchant or shop that after a while the more loyal customer you are the better prices you will get

Thats all I can think of at the moment.....

what are some of your preferences or likes and dislikes from some of the RPGs you have played so far in your life?, would love to hear them



09-17-2009, 07:08 AM
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: East Coast, USA
Posts: 916
Holy long post Batman!!!
In all seriousness, there is always room for more RPGs on the App Store at the moment. Maybe someone will read this and decide to take the idea into consideration.

Apps iLove: iBooks, Podcasts, Tweetbot, Reeder, Instapaper, SoundHound, MLS Live
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GameCenter: PeterM11
09-17-2009, 07:32 AM
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: At that place... with those... people...
Posts: 1,195
A turn based rpg would be great! I remember the days of "Mario and Luigi" on the Game boy

OMG. Double Rainbow!
User ID: Gryphon23 Agon: Gman23
"Birthday Cake, is just Birthday Cake without a little gravy..." Gravy makes EVERYTHING better.
09-17-2009, 09:33 AM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 207
Isn't Wolfenstein RPG a turn-based RPG? That game was on sale for $2.99 a few weeks back. I have it, but I have not been able to play it much yet.
09-17-2009, 10:58 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Location: 夣胧桃源
Posts: 1,869
Any clone of Fire Emblem or a CRPG would be perfect. I think gameloft is most suited for this as they seem to be the best at adding voice to dialogue, has the least broken grammar (yet to see any game with exceptionally well dialogue though) and can afford expert animators.
09-17-2009, 11:17 AM
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: VT
Posts: 72
Vay was a port that came out when the app store fist came out, its pretty good and turn based.
09-17-2009, 02:27 PM
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 1,044
How can you miss that one if you're TBS RPG fan... this one is coming soon & beta testing now

Battle for Wesnoth - Advance Wars-like tactical strategy RPG

they're promising 200~300 hours gameplay.
09-17-2009, 04:42 PM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 501
hahaha yea i hit the max can you believe that? had to break it into 2 posts

RPGs on this platform could definitely be classified as a niche market that contradicts the very nature of the platform the whole "pick up and play" aspect of casual games are owning the app store right now where as RPGs are traditionally immersive deep story driven experiences, but everywhere i look theres always a comment from someone emphasizing how legit such a epic RPG would be on the iphone and how much they desire such a product and when i say RPG i really mean products like the Final Fantasy franchise or something like xenogears, or the dragon quest series for example

so i wouldn't underestimate the profit and potential for a fully realized RPG on this platform by any means and im willing to bet and go on record saying that the first developer that gets it right will completely shock the bean counters and analysts since the product itself will be successful beyond anyones highest expectation, if that happened it really wouldn't surprise me that much
09-17-2009, 06:08 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: Baltimore
Posts: 205
We are currently working on some turned based RPGs
in the style of the old FF etc

using this engine BANG 2D game engine which has been designed for just this purpose.

Screen shot of engine

as you can see from Mouse House which was the Test game for the engine.

The engine runs on iPhone, Wii, Mac, Win, Linux.

Now if only I could fine an investor for these kinds of games

Any how we are thinking of doing shorter cheap RPGs for iPhone and Wiiware vs long 40 hour games.

5$ for a 40 game etc just does not cover actually development costs.

Im in the processing of adding basic 3D tile support also.
Think the 3D buildings in the last Pokemon game on DS.
Should be a neat effect.