Inspiration Behind The Waves Plugins
The Waves plugin series are the first batch of plugins published by team VisuStella MZ. These primarily focused on the essentials for RPG Maker MZ and the types of plugins general RPG Maker MZ projects would use. Here, I will talk about the thoughts, inspirations, and core ideas that went into the creation of each one of these plugin waves. We have split up these plugins across 8 waves, each released in a batch after some time. Use the knowledge however you see fit.
The idea behind Wave 1 of the VisuStella MZ plugin library is to create all of the cores needed for the typical RPG Maker MZ project to function. These cores contain everything from modifying the base scripts for RPG Maker MZ, to adjusting the battle system, items, equips, skills, states, saving, the game's menus, etc. We have also decided to make these the best we can by adding in many popular plugin features from Yanfly Engine Plugins, and Olivia's ,Irina's, and Arisu's MV libraries.
These became super cores as coined by a few members of the community. And that's essentially what they are. In my years of providing my script and plugin services to more than hundreds of creators across the community and having peered into many of their games, I've taken note of what plugins are "staples" for the typical RPG Maker project. These "staples" are also decided through data and analytics.
The VisuStella MZ cores having contained all these features allow for a few things:
Without a doubt, the plugins that we have created for Wave 1 can easily be considered the VisuStella MZ library's best plugins. We have also decided to keep this wave free. Or rather, that was me since Olivia, Irina, and Arisu were screaming about making it cost something since we put in so much hard work for it. But alas, I had a promise to keep. As to keeping them free, I believe that we can use this to allow the RPG Maker community a good foundation when using RPG Maker MZ, which, in my opinion, is the best iteration of RPG Maker thusfar.
Wave 2 is where VisuStella MZ's luxury and paid plugins begin. Any features that we would deem to be essential across the majority of RPG Maker projects would be added to the cores as updated features while new mechanics and functions that are not relevant across all projects would be found here and future waves as luxury plugins.
The common theme across wave 2 is that there isn't any except that they were the most downloaded plugins by analytics and various metrics alone. These analytics and metrics prove to be true even with VisuStella MZ's statistics. Amongst the most downloaded plugins of Yanfly Engine Plugins that wasn't a part of the Wave 1 Cores, these were it and they would make for a great start for Wave 2.
Any experienced RPG Maker developer can quickly take a look at these and understand why they're some of the most downloaded plugins for RPG Maker projects as a whole.
Wave 3 is our continuation of converting the Yanfly Engine Plugins library's over to VisuStella MZ. Most features are converted easily, but the VisuStella MZ team decided to update each of these plugins to be more robust and have new features to them. This is also to take advantage of the newer and improved Plugin Command system added through RPG Maker MZ in addition to taking advantage of RPG Maker MZ's new and improved performance.
The way we decided the plugins this time around were also based on popularity. And just like with Wave 2, it's not hard to see why some of these were picked:
Wave 4 is when team VisuStella MZ started getting its rhythm. We started getting used to the framework and work flow of making plugins for RPG Maker MZ. On top of that, we have been figuring out how to translate major plugins like Battle System - CTB over to RPG Maker MZ and have it integrate well with the base code. All in all though, the choices for this wave's plugins are split between 50% popularity and 50% based on what Final Fantasy X used for its game's features.
Wave 5 is where we have reached the point of pretty much every major popular plugin has already been made bar a few and the waves from 5 onward aim to release them with improvements. We decided to go with releasing one battle system per wave at this point as it's been what happened starting with wave 3. Since STB is the remaining battle system left from Yanfly Engine Plugins, we went with that and gone with it. As STB is pretty tame by itself, we decided to jazz it up with another favorite JRPG series: Persona and selected some plugins associated with it.
Since we have decided that there would be a battle system for each wave, we had to come up with one for Wave 6. At the time of the creation, Archeia was heavily obsessed with Bravely Default II and we decided to do a call back to it, but for Bravely Default I as we believed that version of the battle system was a better fit for RPG Maker MZ. We also decided to pick some plugins that meshed well with the Bravely Default battle system.
Wave 7 is where we decided that it's time to end the waves series. It's mostly because by this point, the majority of general use plugins have been covered and we can start moving onto more specialized plugins. However, for the battle system, we decided to go with an old classic from Yanfly Engine Ace: Battle System - FTB. We already had turn-based battle systems covered by DTB and STB. We had tick-based battle systems covered by TPB, ATB, and CTB. But we didn't have any team-based battle systems so FTB fits the bill.
Truth be told, we did not originally plan to have this many plugin waves at this point in time. However, Olivia absolutely wanted her battle system, OTB, to be on Wave 8 so we had to make our way up to it. Fitting because her plugin series that skyrocketed is the OctoPack Battler series and what a better way to end the Waves series than with this.
The journey in creating the various Waves started from August 2020 and lasted all the way to April 2021. It was a very long but fruitful journey and it's one where I decided to finally to step down as the main leader. I've been making public script and plugin libraries ever since RPG Maker VX and across these 10+ years, I can easily say that the library made for RPG Maker MZ as VisuStella MZ is easily the best one of the bunch. It's the largest by sheer scale and feature completeness. If there's a script or plugin library that I'm most proud of, it's easily VisuStella MZ.
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