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Simple way to change the difficulty of an RPG ?

Started by 156849, October 01, 2017, 02:55:34 AM

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156849

Is there a simple way to change the difficulty of an RPG? If I want to increase HP and enemy statistics on an SNES game, eg SMT2, how do I do it?

KingMike

If nobody has already hacked the game and documented it, you'd have to find the stats yourself.
Start by using cheat searches to locate visible stats like HP. Then you'd be able to find RAM addresses.
That information could be used to then use a trace logger to find ROM addresses.
"My watch says 30 chickens" Google, 2018

Psyklax

Quote from: 156849 on October 01, 2017, 02:55:34 AM
Is there a simple way to change the difficulty of an RPG? If I want to increase HP and enemy statistics on an SNES game, eg SMT2, how do I do it?

The simple way? Cheat. :) Some emulators have cheat searching options, just like we had back in the day with Pro Action Replay. Lose some health, click, lose more, click, pretty soon you'll figure out the RAM location which is keeping your health, and you can change it. Enemy statistics will be more time consuming because, well, there are lots of enemies. But if you just want to give yourself more health, it's pretty easy since everything has to be held somewhere in RAM, you just need to find it.

FAST6191

Is HP and stats a test of skill or a test of grinding? Spending 4 hours killing low level monsters to either buy the best weapons/stock potions or have enough stats to breeze through it is meaningless to me but having to learn patterns, calculate likely outcomes and possibly react faster if it is real time is a different matter.

You can also do soft enforcements of things. If I don't win in ? moves, * minutes or without dropping below X health then I reset and try again. No hacking necessary for that. Give or take calculations half the atk stat of a weapon (equip a low level one maybe) could correspond to double the def of an enemy, similar story maybe putting your close range people in the back row if that is a thing. The latter stuff would even be mechanically enforced if you don't rate your self control, though I will finish that thought by saying runs are accepted in games world with today the most popular probably being the nuzlocke thing in pokemon but it goes back a lot further than that.

Other than that the others have started that one so I will leave that for now.

Psyklax

Quote from: FAST6191 on October 01, 2017, 07:10:09 PM
Is HP and stats a test of skill or a test of grinding? Spending 4 hours killing low level monsters to either buy the best weapons/stock potions or have enough stats to breeze through it is meaningless to me but having to learn patterns, calculate likely outcomes and possibly react faster if it is real time is a different matter.

Which is what turns a lot of people off JRPGs in the first place. Grinding makes you feel like you're getting more for your money when in reality it's just a feature to extend gameplay due to the limitations of the medium. Compare to modern games with limitless storage and you can play for tens of hours without feeling you're repeating things. GTA4 took me many hours to 100% but the only thing that got me down was the friggin' pigeons.

You can see this in other games of the time: making the game overly difficult and limiting your lives. Just so you don't finish it in half an hour and say "hey, I paid 50 bucks for this". Compare today with games like Super Meat Boy where your lives are unlimited and you can save after every level, but there are many levels and each one requires skill to proceed.

Quote from: FAST6191 on October 01, 2017, 07:10:09 PM
You can also do soft enforcements of things. If I don't win in ? moves, * minutes or without dropping below X health then I reset and try again. No hacking necessary for that.

Precisely why I love the first Final Fantasy. Four characters of six classes, mix and match to your heart's content. Makes the game easier or harder, and makes you want to come back to it even after completion.

FAST6191

I don't know if the limited lives and difficulty was a "value" extender in consoles or a hangover from the arcades that consoles seemed to aspire to be like. Said arcades being the microtransactions of their day from where I sit.

Psyklax

Quote from: FAST6191 on October 02, 2017, 04:38:35 AM
I don't know if the limited lives and difficulty was a "value" extender in consoles or a hangover from the arcades that consoles seemed to aspire to be like. Said arcades being the microtransactions of their day from where I sit.

I think it's a bit of both. Arcades had lives so that you wouldn't spend more than a few minutes for your money, and consoles replicated that because they didn't know any better. But by the late 80s I do think it was more of a play extender.