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Boss Rush-themed gameplay?

I don't have screenshots or a game ready for download, so I think I'll just post my idea in here.

Boss Rush-themed game.

Hello everyone. I'm kind of new around here, so forgive me for any bad questions, but I need your help deciding something.
I realized that there are some video games out there that has a linear game mechanic where instead of platforming around, collecting things, fighting waves of monsters, etc--they just have you fight a line of bosses. You travel through different locales, see different parts of the story and all that, but the gameplay is mostly in just exploring around and then fighting one powerful opponent rather than random enemies or troops. The games I can use as an example are Furi, Risk of Rain, and Monster Hunter(sort of) and they focus on fighting one large enemy than hordes of smaller ones.

I have a short game where plot is based off of a storyteller rambling about the heroic battles of a character's relative ages ago, and I wanted a plot that moved quickly, as if it were only detailing those big plot points like an old legend, and not going through every little battle against a rat or something. How would that work in an RPG, if possible? And one made in MV no less?
 

Arkman

Villager
Xy$
0.00
A good example of a game that's mainly boss rush themed but has a pixel art aesthetic is Titan Souls. It approaches story telling with little actual words, and sets a pretty isolated atmosphere. Mind you it wasn't made in MV and it's not a turn based RPG, but pretty much every enemy is a 'boss' in a way. Shadow of the colossus does the same thing. There's a new game coming out in 2018 which i can't remember the name of, but it has the same concept.

Doing it in a turn based fashion is also doable, there's no reason you couldn't make each encounter a boss fight. As long as there is a good amount of pacing between highs and lows, it should be fine. You'll want to give bosses some kind of mechanical complexity that the player will be rewarded by through learning the pattern and exploiting weaknesses, gaurding when incoming attacks are coming etc.

Usually you start with a simple mechanic like guarding when an enemy charges up or something (or don't attack when it turns to mist) and as the bosses progress you add in more complex mechanics like elemental weaknesses, status conditions, and such. I've never actually seen an example of it done as a turn based RPG, but it could be interesting.

I'd also say that Risk of Rain is a great game but it's not really a pure boss rush themed game.There are thousands of trash mobs in that game!
 
This may be a smaller point on the matter, and mostly a narrative one. One great bonus that is also a setback is the lack of "grinding" out a character. It's a thing with RPGs, you sit for hours "creating" your character through hordes of minions. With your idea here, the battles are limited and it's a series of flashbacks, so there doesn't need to be questing for items or grinding for experience points.

Arkman mentioned Shadow of the Colossus. In that game, you could really beat the last boss with the characters out the gates, other than a few tiny bonuses here and there your hero pretty much stays the same. no experience. no gold. no items. I'd recommend doing the same. It's already sounding much like a narrative and I think keeping all that stuff out would keep the story more engaging. When the battle ends no little box should show up to say what you won. The battle should end and the story should keep moving (maybe even fire a small story scene into the battle screen?).

If you do want character development you can transparently equip your hero with a new item or level up manually after the battle and have the raving lunatic in the tavern just mention how he used the praying mantis arm as a new sword and suddenly on the next fight you see he's gone from 50hp to 200hp or something. (or even keep him at 50hp the whole game?) I think developing a character manually like that would be very easy under the strict conditions of the game, would allow you to make the boss battles exactly as difficult as you want (or under conditions you want example: "the hero thought it would be a good idea to use the fire sword" you, the player, have no choice but to use it, then has to fight a fire monster and can't auto attack). it reminds me of Final Fantasy 7, when Cloud has flashbacks he's at a different level with different equipment, it made the flashbacks a bit more exciting to play and it'd be fair to do the same thing here.

Anyways. I think I went on a rant. to answer your question (How would that work in an RPG?): In short, I think you'd have to make the RPG elements pretty bare-boned, and focus on the narrative. (As well as, like Arkman said, make the boss battles a sort of puzzle solving fight.)
 
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