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Are final fantasy games really role playing games?

GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
edited July 2007 in Games and Technology
I'm having a debate in the office about if FF is a RPG or not. A lot of people are ganging up on me and saying, "of course it is." This one fellow is saying that the combat system makes it a rpg because it allows you to customize your avatar? But by that definition, isn't a hack and slash an RPG? or a resident evil game?

Also, does clicking a potion in a scripted combat really make a game an RPG?
Do you really play a "role" when you have 4 scripted game types (damage dealer, healer, ranged mage, ect.) and you simply update their skill sat every step?

Basically, in FF games you just update the same spell over and over. You can't really play through the game with a completely different combat setup and still beat it. You have to upgrade and level up the main players that are best to beat the big bosses. The rest is just busy work to unlock a few odd spells.

Isn't final fantasy basically like playing a choose your adventure novel, or watching an interactive movie with a predetermined fate?

What makes it a role playing game?
What makes oblivion a role playing game?

Where is the role?

GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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    SeptusSeptus Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Meh, I call those RPGs, and the pen and paper ones, role-playing games. There's no console game I can think of that I'd consider a real role-playing game. It's just a name.

    Septus on
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    bruinbruin Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I never thought "RPG" should be taken literally.

    bruin on
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    GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Well that's my point, it's the short hand we use to identify a game type that isn't really a role playing game.

    GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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    PieManPieMan Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Yes. Yes they are.

    PieMan on
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    ZephyrZephyr Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    i pretend i'm squall when i play ff8.

    is that a role?

    Zephyr on
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    citizen059citizen059 hello my name is citizen I'm from the InternetRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I have very little experience with Final Fantasy games. My most recent experience was FF3 on the DS.

    As I said in another thread recently, it was like playing a Korean MMO offline. Tons of grinding, not much story.

    citizen059 on
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    MinionOfCthulhuMinionOfCthulhu Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Zephyr wrote: »
    i pretend i'm squall when i play ff8.

    is that a role?

    Wouldn't every game be a role-playing game then?

    MinionOfCthulhu on
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    GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Zephyr wrote: »
    i pretend i'm squall when i play ff8.

    is that a role?

    you pretend you're kissing a fake girl and have a bad attitude.

    do you act the game out or?

    again, that's like watching a movie and pretending you a spartan in 300.

    NOt an rpg.

    GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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    ZephyrZephyr Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    well then no RPG is an RPG because you're not role playing in them.

    Zephyr on
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    DjiemDjiem Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Second Life is a RPG then. And one of the only.

    Djiem on
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    SeptusSeptus Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Djiem wrote: »
    Second Life is a RPG then. And one of the only.

    Right, Second Life and MMOs. However in most MMOs, people choose not to exercise the ability to roleplay.

    Septus on
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    GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Djiem wrote: »
    Second Life is a RPG then. And one of the only.

    I'm not saying they don't exist. Fable is a role playing game.

    I'm saying what we refer to as RPGs in the classic context (final fantasy) isn't.

    GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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    SeptusSeptus Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Djiem wrote: »
    Second Life is a RPG then. And one of the only.

    I'm not saying they don't exist. Fable is a role playing game.

    I'm saying what we refer to as RPGs in the classic context (final fantasy) isn't.

    Fable doesn't go nearly far enough to be considered one either.

    Septus on
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    DesertBoxDesertBox Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Zephyr wrote: »
    i pretend i'm squall when i play ff8.

    is that a role?

    you pretend you're kissing a fake girl and have a bad attitude.

    do you act the game out or?

    again, that's like watching a movie and pretending you a spartan in 300.

    NOt an rpg.

    I'm not really understanding. By this definition, what games are examples of RPGs? Every game I think of has fairly linear story but maybe a handful of endings. Except MMORPGs and sandbox games like the Sims.

    DesertBox on
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    Sacred CowSacred Cow Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    HORAY! A semantics thread!

    Sacred Cow on
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    DVGDVG No. 1 Honor Student Nether Institute, Evil AcademyRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Video game genres have become somewhat ambigious over time. However, suffice to say, RPG today applies to a lot of games that carry traits over from their Pencil and Paper siblings.

    Tabletop games and Final Fantasy have the following things in common: Power Levels, Experience Points, Vital Statistics (STR, DEX that sort of thing, as well as hit points, life), body slots for equipment, items, turn based combat, etc.

    Some action RPGs like, say, The Legend of Zelda abstract these qualities a bit. A heart container stands in for an Experience Level and Hit Points, for instance.

    Basically, things get classified as an RPG if they have more in common with traditional RPGs than with other genres.

    DVG on
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    GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Septus wrote: »
    Djiem wrote: »
    Second Life is a RPG then. And one of the only.

    Right, Second Life and MMOs. However in most MMOs, people choose not to exercise the ability to roleplay.

    But in WOW you play a role in a fight.
    You play the healer in that you actively preform efficent healing.

    that's a role - if it's not immersion story telling but that's ok.

    in FF you play a party with different spell choices, a more complex version of a hack and slash. A party that has no chance to alter in any form.

    GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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    QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    My bright-line test for whether or not something is an RPG is, "do little numbers pop up when I hit an enemy or take damage?"

    Qingu on
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    DjiemDjiem Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Sacred Cow wrote: »
    HORAY! A semantics thread!

    Djiem on
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    Vincent GraysonVincent Grayson Frederick, MDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    As others have said, RPG is just sort of the genre name these days. While its' roots are in tabletop games that involved creating and controlling one character til his/her death/retirement, that's not really what people tend to mean these days.

    To me, the modern "RPG" descriptor for a game suggests controlling one or more characters (which you may or may not create yourself) through a story which may or may not branch out, but is pretty much always going to be largely the same, with combat/gameplay that involves the slow advancement of skills/stats such that your own individual "skill" is less important than the "skill" of the character you are playing.

    This is why I wouldn't consider something like Zelda an RPG. Since gameplay is largely dependant on you being good at the game, rather than Link being powerful.

    One thing that should be clear is that no modern PC/console RPG shares more than a passing resemblance to actual role-playing, because the dynamic aspect that requires constant supervision (in the form of a DM or similar) simply is not present, so a large number of things will be set in stone from the beginning, which is the opposite of a good tabletop game.

    edit: Gold, is English your first language? I have no intention of insulting you, but I'm having a hard time understanding some of your posts.

    Vincent Grayson on
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    Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2007
    Since we are arguing semantics, I would prefer to call most "RPG"s "Epic Fantasy" games instead.

    Just_Bri_Thanks on
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    StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Fallout is a RPG, and so is BG2.

    But FF isn't.

    I love FF, though.

    Stormwatcher on
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    urahonkyurahonky Resident FF7R hater Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Qingu wrote: »
    My bright-line test for whether or not something is an RPG is, "do little numbers pop up when I hit an enemy or take damage?"

    That's what I use too.

    That or: Do I gain exp/money from killing mobs? Do I use that to make myself stronger?

    urahonky on
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    setrajonassetrajonas Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    What about Morrowind and Oblivion?

    setrajonas on
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    Sacred CowSacred Cow Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Since we are arguing semantics, I would prefer to call most "RPG"s "Epic Fantasy" games instead.

    if you don't mind, i'd like to take the semantic a step further and call all my games "push buttons, make things happen" games.

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    ZephyrZephyr Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    basically what defines an RPG for me is

    Do i gain XP from killing things, to level up and gain stats increase, or just stats increase?

    i.e. FF, WoW, ect.

    zelda is more action adventure to me.

    Zephyr on
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    SaddlerSaddler Registered User regular
    edited July 2007

    Isn't final fantasy basically like playing a choose your adventure novel or watching an interactive movie with a predetermined fate?

    Where is the role?

    It's like watching a slow paced and repetitive cartoon with crappy animation. The main differences is that FF provides limited interactivity (or the illusion of it) for immersion.

    Saddler on
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    Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2007
    Sacred Cow wrote: »
    Since we are arguing semantics, I would prefer to call most "RPG"s "Epic Fantasy" games instead.

    if you don't mind, i'd like to take the semantic a step further and call all my games "push buttons, make things happen" games.

    I try not to object to things that are true, but that is a little wordy, don't you think?

    Just_Bri_Thanks on
    ...and when you are done with that; take a folding
    chair to Creation and then suplex the Void.
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    GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    As others have said, RPG is just sort of the genre name these days. While its' roots are in tabletop games that involved creating and controlling one character til his/her death/retirement, that's not really what people tend to mean these days.

    To me, the modern "RPG" descriptor for a game suggests controlling one or more characters (which you may or may not create yourself) through a story which may or may not branch out, but is pretty much always going to be largely the same, with combat/gameplay that involves the slow advancement of skills/stats such that your own individual "skill" is less important than the "skill" of the character you are playing.

    This is why I wouldn't consider something like Zelda an RPG. Since gameplay is largely dependant on you being good at the game, rather than Link being powerful.

    One thing that should be clear is that no modern PC/console RPG shares more than a passing resemblance to actual role-playing, because the dynamic aspect that requires constant supervision (in the form of a DM or similar) simply is not present, so a large number of things will be set in stone from the beginning, which is the opposite of a good tabletop game.

    edit: Gold, is English your first language? I have no intention of insulting you, but I'm having a hard time understanding some of your posts.

    I agree with you 100 percent.

    GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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    Sacred CowSacred Cow Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Sacred Cow wrote: »
    Since we are arguing semantics, I would prefer to call most "RPG"s "Epic Fantasy" games instead.

    if you don't mind, i'd like to take the semantic a step further and call all my games "push buttons, make things happen" games.

    I try not to object to things that are true, but that is a little wordy, don't you think?

    well, my Wii games are a little easier. they're "lol waggle" games.

    Sacred Cow on
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    Just_Bri_ThanksJust_Bri_Thanks Seething with rage from a handbasket.Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited July 2007
    Sacred Cow wrote: »
    Sacred Cow wrote: »
    Since we are arguing semantics, I would prefer to call most "RPG"s "Epic Fantasy" games instead.

    if you don't mind, i'd like to take the semantic a step further and call all my games "push buttons, make things happen" games.

    I try not to object to things that are true, but that is a little wordy, don't you think?

    well, my Wii games are a little easier. they're "lol waggle" games.

    I laughed.

    Just_Bri_Thanks on
    ...and when you are done with that; take a folding
    chair to Creation and then suplex the Void.
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    DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    "Role Playing Game" is a genre definition, so yes, Final Fantasy games are RPGs. You can argue against the video game genre definition if you like, but Final Fantasy games absolutely fall under that umbrella.

    Drez on
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    DVGDVG No. 1 Honor Student Nether Institute, Evil AcademyRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Look, if you guys want to get hung up on lack of choice in final fantasy games, consider that in an RPG you are supposed to act as your character would not as you would. Therefore the character you are playing as is acting as they should. The only difference is you did not flesh out and create this character yourself.

    DVG on
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    FirebrandFirebrand Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    DVG wrote: »
    Look, if you guys want to get hung up on lack of choice in final fantasy games, consider that in an RPG you are supposed to act as your character would not as you would. Therefore the character you are playing as is acting as they should. The only difference is you did not flesh out and create this character yourself.

    But then I wouldn't be playing the role. :P

    Role-playing, in games and otherwise, would be were you yourself interpret a character and act accordingly. That's the core gameplay. Stats, character creation and combat are not essential to role playing games by this definition. It annoys me when games are said to have "RPG elements" because they have character levels.

    FF would not be role playing games, because your avatar's actions are already decided without your input. Biowares RPGs come a lot closer, even though dialog options are limited to a handful in each situation.

    Firebrand on
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    wateyadwateyad Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    The only possible defintion that fits everything that is nowadays called an RPG is a game ultimately decended from Dungeons and Dragons. Frankly, I'm just fine with letting it mean that and you should all be too, this debate is silly and causes me to groan every time it gets brought up.

    wateyad on
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    DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Firebrand wrote: »
    Role-playing, in games and otherwise, would be were you yourself interpret a character and act accordingly. That's the core gameplay. Stats, character creation and combat are not essential to role playing games by this definition. It annoys me when games are said to have "RPG elements" because they have character levels.

    Sorry, but this argument is irrelevant and always will be. The only necessary quality for a "Role-Playing Game" as relates to video game properties is that you have a character that grows statistically, via levels or skills/abilities, etc. etc.

    This definition has existed since the early 1980s and has yet to be modified.

    While I agree with the spirit of your argument, this whole thread is nonsense because people are just whining about an already-accepted genre definition. This thread is the equivalent of whining that tables should be called "fonjgwabbers" instead. It's an arbitrary genre definition.

    Drez on
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    BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Also, does clicking a potion in a scripted combat really make a game an RPG?
    Do you really play a "role" when you have 4 scripted game types (damage dealer, healer, ranged mage, ect.) and you simply update their skill sat every step?

    Basically, in FF games you just update the same spell over and over. You can't really play through the game with a completely different combat setup and still beat it. You have to upgrade and level up the main players that are best to beat the big bosses. The rest is just busy work to unlock a few odd spells.

    Every FF I have played (5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12) I never use Ranged Mages. Nor do I use Healers. Nor do I use Summons.

    I use the set-up of 4 Damage dealers, one of which might know a healing spell or two. Saying you can't beat the game with diffrent combat set-up's is ridiculous since I normally use about 1 summon the enitre time I'm playing the game. I don't like using my MP so I don't and the games are just as easy, if not easier, with only characters that attack and use items. About 80% of RPG's for me I pressing the attack button, the only RPG I've played that really forced me to use magic was Digital Devil Saga. And on the odd chance that I need to look up how/where to do something in the game online, walkthru's always say I should be about 10 levels higher then I am, but I still beat the parts with only attacking.

    Magic that changes status effects/deals damage is NOT your friend in a FF game.

    Burtletoy on
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    DVGDVG No. 1 Honor Student Nether Institute, Evil AcademyRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Firebrand wrote: »
    DVG wrote: »
    Look, if you guys want to get hung up on lack of choice in final fantasy games, consider that in an RPG you are supposed to act as your character would not as you would. Therefore the character you are playing as is acting as they should. The only difference is you did not flesh out and create this character yourself.

    But then I wouldn't be playing the role. :P

    Role-playing, in games and otherwise, would be were you yourself interpret a character and act accordingly. That's the core gameplay. Stats, character creation and combat are not essential to role playing games by this definition. It annoys me when games are said to have "RPG elements" because they have character levels.

    FF would not be role playing games, because your avatar's actions are already decided without your input. Biowares RPGs come a lot closer, even though dialog options are limited to a handful in each situation.

    If you want to get technical, you do direct their actions, just not their dialogue. You decide when they go along in the party and what actions they take in combat. If you want to get into it, you could, for instance, refuse to use Magic for Terra in Final Fantasy VI until she comes to understand her powers and her past.

    Console RPGs are typically RPGs in mechanics if not in story.

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    captainkcaptaink TexasRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    This is just a dumb thing to argue about. Ok, yes, there's little actual role-playing going on while you play a typical final fantasy. However, at this point it's just convention to call them RPGs. Everyone knows what you mean when you say it.

    captaink on
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    GoldAgainstTheSoulGoldAgainstTheSoul Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    burtleboy = so does that mean you agree with me or not?

    GoldAgainstTheSoul on
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