Inspiration Behind Dungeon Divers Series

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Dungeon Divers is a series that team VisuStella MZ made that focuses primarily on dungeon crawling. While most JRPGs have dungeons to traverse, not all of them are dungeon-heavy. For those that are, Dungeon Divers offers plugins that help amplify the experience more.

Dungeon Divers Volume 1


The Dungeon Divers Volume 1 plugins are innovative additions to RPG Maker MZ that enhance the gameplay experience and address specific gameplay needs. Inspired by the desire for a user interface compatible with frontview battle systems, the Frontview Battle UI plugin bridges the gap and provides more options for frontview battles. The plugin offers a versatile and aesthetically pleasing UI that seamlessly tracks important player stats. Meanwhile, the Field Skills plugin introduces a unique feature that allows players to activate skills from the map, streamlining navigation and adding depth to the game world. Lastly, the Full Field Recovery plugin tackles item management issues by enabling players to easily access a healing menu and utilize their abundance of healing items effectively. Together, these plugins enrich the RPG Maker MZ experience and empower game developers to create engaging dungeon experiences for their games.

Frontview Battle UI


IrinaAvatar.png This is an article written by Irina.

The first key inspiration behind this plugin was the necessity for a user interface compatible with frontview battle systems. Until this point, many RPG Maker plugins focused on sideview UI, such as the Sideview Battle UI designed by Olivia. Thus, the desire to bridge this gap and bring more options for frontview battles became an essential motivational aspect.

Known for its rich and aesthetically pleasing UI, ATLUS's Soul Hackers 2 served as a major inspiration. The versatility of the game's UI in catering to both frontview and sideview battles, and even on-map scenarios, influenced the adaptability of the Frontview Battle UI plugin. It was designed to seamlessly track important player stats such as HP and MP, making it a practical and immersive addition to any RPG.

The static nature of many frontview battle systems left much to be desired. Inspired by the more dynamic sideview counterparts, the Frontview Battle UI plugin aimed to infuse more vitality into the frontview systems. It uses various effects such as minor flashes and shakes to depict changes like damage, recovery, and other activities, thus enhancing the gameplay experience.

In the heat of battle, it can be difficult for players to quickly identify their characters and their activities. Drawing from the use of bust graphics on the side in various successful RPGs, this plugin was designed to provide immediate visual cues to the players about their actors. This allows for smoother gameplay and enables players to make quicker decisions during battles.

With these inspirations, the Frontview Battle UI plugin for RPG Maker MZ has been crafted to deliver a more vibrant and engaging RPG experience. Whether in the intensity of frontview battles or the strategic planning on the game map, this plugin ensures that players always have the best UI experience possible.

Field Skills


IrinaAvatar.png This is an article written by Irina.

The Field Skills plugin draws inspiration from the need to streamline and enhance the player's interaction with skills outside of battle in RPG Maker MZ. One of the key frustrations in RPGs is the time-consuming process of navigating through various menus to access field-only skills. The Field Skills plugin addresses this issue by providing a convenient solution: the ability to activate skills directly from the map scene through a specialized window. This eliminates the need for players to navigate multiple menus, saving precious time and allowing them to focus on the game's exploration and immersive world.

Taking inspiration from games like ATLUS's Soul Hackers 2, the Field Skills plugin offers a range of field-specific abilities that enhance the player's exploration experience. Using examples in Soul Hackers 2 where dungeon exploration could become tedious, the Field Skills feature allows players to perform various actions to alleviate the challenges of exploration. For example, players can use skills to temporarily speed up their walking speed, disable encounters for a limited time, or even teleport back to the dungeon entrance. These field skills provide players with valuable tools to interact with the game world and navigate through its challenges more efficiently. The power is in your hands through the common events called forth by the Field Skills.

Furthermore, the Field Skills plugin is designed to cater to games with a wide range of field-only skills. Instead of relying on traditional Button Common Events, the filtered skill list is accessible directly from the map scene. This feature not only simplifies the skill activation process but also offers a more user-friendly approach for games with numerous field skills. By using notetags, developers can easily enable, disable, hide, or show specific field skills based on various conditions, such as the player's location or the state of certain switches.

Full Field Recovery


IrinaAvatar.png This is an article written by Irina.

The Full Field Recovery plugin draws inspiration from the desire to streamline the healing process and enhance the player's experience in RPG Maker MZ games. Oftentimes, players hoard healing items, fearing that they may need them in critical situations, leading to a reluctance to actually use them. This plugin addresses this issue by introducing a simple and convenient button press feature that allows players to quickly access a Full Field Recovery window. By automatically using items to fully recover the party's HP, MP, and status, this quality of life feature encourages players to make use of their abundance of healing items and ensures a more comfortable dungeon crawling experience.

The inspiration for this plugin can be seen in many modern JRPGs where the Quick Heal or Quick Recovery feature has become a staple. By incorporating this feature into RPG Maker MZ games, players are provided with a familiar and convenient command that is commonly found in contemporary JRPGs. This not only streamlines the healing process but also aligns the game with current industry standards, giving players a sense of familiarity and ease of use.

The plugin also takes inspiration from ATLUS games, which like the other two plugins in this set, Soul Hackers 2, which presents players with numerous items. In games with a large variety of healing items, it can become cumbersome for players to navigate through menus to use them effectively. The Full Field Recovery plugin addresses this challenge by automatically prioritizing items based on their cost, ensuring that lower-cost items are used first to avoid wasting the player's more valuable and rare healing resources. This approach strikes a balance between efficient item usage and preserving valuable items for more dire situations, enhancing the overall gameplay experience.

In summary, the Full Field Recovery plugin streamlines the healing process, encourages players to utilize their abundant healing items, and takes inspiration from modern JRPG conventions and games like Soul Hackers 2. By providing a convenient and familiar feature, it reduces menu navigation, improves player comfort, and ensures that valuable healing resources are utilized effectively. With this plugin, dungeon crawling becomes more enjoyable, and players can fully immerse themselves in the game's world without the burden of item hoarding or cumbersome healing processes.

Dungeon Divers Volume 2


The Dungeon Divers Volume 2 plugins, like with volume 1, are centered around dungeon diving. This time, we focus more on the more mechanical aspects alongside replayability. Replayability here means either subsequent playthroughs or even revisiting already completed content. Also, these focus on providing a different experience for each player, so that whether you're playing or watching someone else stream these games, the experience will be unique.

Random Dungeon Maps


ArisuAvatar2.png This is an article written by Arisu.

Creating Random Dungeon Maps for RPG Maker MZ was born out of necessity and enthusiasm for the sake of game design. The default random dungeon generator in RPG Maker MZ had limitations that didn't meet our vision for creating complex and organic dungeons. The absence of in-game options for pure randomization was a significant oversight in the existing system. Our plugin aims to fill this void.

Inspirations were primarily drawn from roguelike titles like Pokémon Mystery Dungeon, Hades, and Enter the Gungeon. These games offer excellent examples of how randomized dungeons can significantly enhance gameplay. Our focus was to give developers robust control over the dungeon generation process, which those games shared.

No two dungeon diving experiences will be the same. This makes dungeon diving as interesting to play as it is for audiences to watch. Dungeons can undergo changes through adding new layouts after certain switches have been enabled for more variety and preventing the dungeon dive from getting too stale.

Challenge System


ArisuAvatar2.png This is an article written by Arisu.

The Challenge System plugin for RPG Maker MZ is designed to allow players to impose self-driven challenges. One of the key elements we wanted to bring to RPG Maker was replayability, an element often missing in many role-playing games. We believe that games should offer more than just a single run-through, and this is where the Challenge System comes in.

Our inspirations came from innovative games like Hades, with its replayable Heat system, and Arknights with its unique Contingency Contract event. Both of these games successfully offer replayable experiences by challenging the players in new and exciting ways each time they play.

The beauty of the Challenge System is its versatility. Challenges can be applied on both a global scale, affecting the entire game world, or a local scale, targeting specific levels or battles. This dual functionality enriches gameplay and provides opportunities for players to test their skills in myriad ways. They're also a great way to test the player's mastery over the game by introducing harder enemies. By accepting and conquering these challenges, players earn special rewards, encouraging them to step out of their comfort zones and engage in new tactical decisions.

Because sometimes, it's worth revisiting an already completed dungeon. Fighting already familiar enemies will become more unique. What used to be the goofy Goblin can now be a monstrous threat.

Character Creation System


ArisuAvatar2.png This is an article written by Arisu.

The Character Creation System plugin for RPG Maker MZ aims to personalize each player's gaming experience. We've taken cues from classic titles such as Etrian Odyssey and Disgaea, where character creation and customization are core elements that significantly impact gameplay.

The Character Creation System lets players dig deep into customization. From selecting unique classes and traits to fine-tuning visual appearances and even audio elements, we offer complete control. The freedom to name characters adds that final, personal touch. Replayability was a critical consideration during the plugin's development. With endless combinations of classes, traits, and appearances, each playthrough offers a different experience. This variety ensures that the game remains fresh and engaging, inviting players to explore new strategies and character synergies.

Players will find the Character Creation System particularly exciting. Given the plugin's extensive customization features, no two play sessions will look the same. This is great for streamers. This unpredictability enhances viewer engagement, making each stream a unique experience.

Ending Statements


And that's it for this article and the inspirations that go into these plugins!

Happy RPG Making!

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