So you have this great idea for a role-playing game but don’t know where to start. You’ve never made one before, and the whole thing seems too complicated even to start with. You’re not alone. I don’t have any experience making video games, but I have experience making role-playing games (the paper and pencil kind), and I’ll tell you that they are a lot of work! But if you can work through all the tough stuff, it’s also a lot of fun and more rewarding than almost anything else you can make (except maybe another video game). So in this guide, we’ll go over how to make your RPG from scratch so you can live out your fantasy story in style.
Get the Right Software
You need to make a role-playing game, and you’ve decided to do it yourself. Great! You’re about to embark on a journey that will change your life for the better. But before you can get started, there’s one more thing you need: software.
This is where most people fall and give up, but don’t worry—we’ll walk through this together (and if there’s some other tricky part of making an RPG that I haven’t covered yet, and I left it out here, let me know in the comments).
The good news is that making an RPG isn’t nearly as hard as getting into college or finding work after graduation; in fact, all you need are two things: A computer capable of running any software currently available on the market (assuming Windows), and money (which isn’t exactly easy these days). The bad news is that there are still plenty of options when choosing what program will best suit your needs as an aspiring game designer/coder/artist who wants nothing more than to make something great! So let’s talk about them now…
Design Your World
The world is the stage on which your story will take place. It’s a setting where magic and monsters exist, and people go to school, work in businesses, and socialize. Without a word, you have no game—so it’s essential that you take the time to design one that is fun and challenging for the player. Here are some tips for making sure your world meets those criteria:
- Give your unique world qualities:
- Make sure that your world has its own unique rules (and many worlds do). For example, in Dragon Age II, there are mages who can use spells but also have an addiction to magic called “the Taint.” If all characters don’t follow these rules in the game, then players will feel like something is missing from their experience.
- Make things interesting:
- If you want players to be excited about playing through your story, make sure it doesn’t feel bland! One way of doing this is by adding challenges or enemies into each scene so that players must think carefully about how they react when faced with danger rather than just running straight towards whatever goal they were trying to achieve before being stopped by enemies who don’t have anything else better going on at home tonight either unfortunately not even Netflix because Amazon Prime has yet again delayed delivery due solely***END SECTION.
Write a Fantastic Story
Write an incredible story.
The story is the heart of every RPG. It gives your game meaning, and it’s at the center of everything else you do: character development to combat mechanics to world design. If your story is boring, or if it doesn’t connect with players on an emotional level, then all that other stuff won’t matter much at all.
The first step in ensuring your game has a good story is to think about what kind of story you want to tell—and there are many options! Do you want your plot focused mostly on action-packed battles? Or would you prefer a slow burn where players explore their characters’ relationships with each other? Maybe something more abstract like exploring themes like love, death, or corruption? It’s up to you!
Place Your Characters in a Location
Place your characters in a location that makes sense for their mission. The location should be exciting and have a story of its own, but it should also be a good match for the characters’ abilities, personalities, and overall goals. For example, if your character wants to find out what happened to his brother, who disappeared ten years ago while on vacation in Greece, you might choose an abandoned tavern outside of Athens as your starting point.
Give Them Missions and Quests to Complete That Make Sense in Their Context
When creating missions, ensure they’re appropriate for the character, location, story, game, and player.
If you’re designing a role-playing game that takes place in medieval times and your main character is a knight of the round table who’s just been told by his king to go off and slay a dragon (who terrorizes the local kingdom), then sending him on a mission to deliver some swords from one village to another probably isn’t going to work as well as it would if the character was instead an elf in training at the elven temple which needs to find his master before dark so he can learn more about magic before nightfall comes along.
Have New Equipment as Rewards or Goals for Your Characters to Find
You should have new equipment as rewards or goals for your characters to find.
This will make the game more exciting and give your players more options when trying to tackle problems and puzzles. In addition, you can also use it to make the game more challenging if there’s a group of enemies that uses weapons that are stronger than what your players have been using up until now.
Make an Over-arching Plot
Before writing the individual sessions, sit down and create an overall plot that spans multiple sessions. This is your story arc—the overarching plot which connects all the individual sessions. When creating your story arc, the first thing to consider is whether it makes sense in the context of the world you’ve created. Suppose you’ve chosen to set your game in an alternate universe where vampires, werewolves, and zombies exist as ordinary people living alongside humans. In that case, these creatures can be part of the game’s world. Then again, if your game takes place in modern-day America (or any other place on Earth), vampire counts are low—so maybe it would make sense for only one vampire in town (and he should be hiding his identity).
Next up: How does this story arc begin? Where does it end? What happens along the way? Asking yourself these questions will help get things started, but if needed, try starting with something small like “the protagonist buys a sword from a shady character” or “an army marches toward their village.” Also, keep in mind that any events that occur during this section need not be permanent or even carry over into future episodes; just think about what events would lead logically into upcoming ones without giving away too much information beforehand, so players don’t feel like they’re being given answers instead of clues when playing through later missions
Make Several Different Endings Based on How Well the Character Does at Their Mission
Make several different endings based on how well the character does at their mission. It’s essential to make sure they’re different, not just variations on the same ending, but you also don’t want them too obvious. If your game is too hard, it might be boring to get through all the missions to see what happens if you played perfectly. On the other hand, if it’s too easy, there won’t be any challenge left for players who want a challenge—and then why would they play? You should also try not making any of these endings too long or short; anything around five minutes long is acceptable and anything shorter than two minutes can feel rushed or unfulfilling for users who are used to having more time with games they love (like The Legend of Zelda). Also, remember not to go overboard with difficulty spikes. While some players may enjoy struggling against impossible odds as part of their hobby experience, others will get frustrated quickly and have no incentive left after repeatedly failing at something which should’ve been doable in theory.”
Making Role-playing Games Is a Lot of Work but Is Fun and Rewarding Once Complete
Making role-playing games is a lot of work, but it’s also fun and rewarding once complete. You can make a role-playing game as simple or complex as possible—by yourself or with friends.
If you’re new to making role-playing games, start by making one with just one other person. It’ll be easier if you both know the rules beforehand, and if someone has more experience than the other person in writing stories or running games, they should be the one who writes most of it (though they can still let their friend write things too).
Once all the tips and tricks we shared in this chapter are implemented, you will have a fully-functioning role-playing game. You may even see your ideas expand and grow when you design the quests, locations, and characters involved in your world.
And that is how to make a role-playing game!
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