RPG Maker XP is an interesting addition to this group, chiefly because it’s one of the oddest game development programs we’ve ever come across. It seems so archaic in its execution that you’d be forgiven for thinking that it was is something straight from the nineties.
It follows on from the rather successful RPG Maker 2000 and, as you can imagine from the title, is a tool developed for Windows XP machines back in that operating system’s heyday to allow users to create 2D classic RPG titles, such as Legend Of Zeida and so on.
The concept of building your game is remarkably simple: all you do is drop the landscape onto the game world, while gradually building up the layers. You then inject characters, sounds, effects, animations and create a set of events to control interactions between the world and the inhabitants.
Your work can then be built and tested inside the editor itself and, if needed, you can delve deeper into the creation process and the abilities that RPG Maker XP offers. Everything from animations, battles, weapons, a cast of pre-defined characters and items can be added and configured to coincide with the game events thanks to the scripting language RPG Maker XP incorporates.
The scripting language, which controls all the aspects of RPG Maker, can be manipulated to support audio and graphics far beyond the abilities of the core game engine. While RPG Maker integrates Ruby, which is known for its limitations, thanks to the game scripting system these limitations can be expanded to create something that’s actually not all that bad.
However, contrary to all these good points, the Ul and game development engine itself is a bit clunky and not all that stable, while the various menus in the Ul often have trouble opening or don’t display at all. Objects that you’ve spent time on creating and incorporating into the game world can often disappear without apparent cause – and, similarly, you can come across objects you’ve not even added to the set you’re dealing with.
Saying that, it doesn’t take much to come up with a working RPG title. It might not be very good but, in every sense, it’s a step in the right direction (albeit a very niche direction). You can opt to make things more complex, but that involves dredging through some pretty dire and poorly translated tutorials that appear to over-complicate matters even more.That being said, there is a sizable community that you can dip in to if the complicated battle algorithms get the better of you and, for the most part, the community seems to be pretty helpful.
RPG Maker XP feels a little broken and very out of date. There’s lots you can get into, and you can create a basic game fairly easily, but itf> just a little too much effort on a tool that doesn’t work quite as well as it could.