RPG with 3d Graphics or Pixel Graphics?

Discussion in 'General Game Discussion and Questions' started by Stingman, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. Stingman

    Stingman Well-Known Member
    Patreon Bronze

    Aug 14, 2012
    App / Game Developer
    The Bay Area
    Mobile has lots of great looking pixel art games like Wayward Souls, and it also has some great looking 3d RPG games like Oceanhorn. I'm curious to see if people prefer pixel graphics or 3d or if it truly does not matter to you. I personally have a preference of 3d graphics when it comes to RPGs which is not to say I don't enjoy many pixel RPG games too. A lot of people either like retro-style games or modern looking 3d games. I know that gameplay is and should be most important but this is simply a question on what visually appeals to you and gains your interest the most. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
  2. Exact-Psience

    Exact-Psience Well-Known Member

    Jan 12, 2012
    The Work-At-Home Guy
    You're right about gameplay above all else. I like good graphics, and that means clean, user-friendly GUI that works well with the game's theme, clean hit detection, clean animation, and well-made menus. As long as these elements mesh together to push the game's overall mood, it should make the game good regardless of artstyle.
  3. Nullzone

    Nullzone 👮 Spam Police 🚓

    Jul 12, 2013
    Good 3D graphics all the way please! Pixel can't "look great" to me by definition.

    For a more differentiated answer:
    I also play games like the Kingturn series where graphics definitely take a backseat to gameplay. But, they are still good (enough) to look at without giving me eyecancer. Something like Sword & Sworcery I wouldn't touch with a 10-foot pole, it's just too ugly to bear.
    I grew up with pixel graphics (even played the original Pacman and Asteroids in arcades) , and saw how graphics developed over the last 30 years. And boy, am I glad that the "good old days" are over.
    If someone had told me 30 years ago that I would sit in bed with my iPad and positively drool and jawdrop over fantastic 3D landscapes in something like Nimian Legends, I would have asked which Science Fiction book they got that from :)

    Nimian Legends is a great example why 3D trumps pixels:
    An environment like that would simply not be possible using pixel graphics, nor induce awed jawdropping in me.

    Other than that, what E-P says:
    Good UI and technical implementation (like hit detection) are very important, too. But a completely different subject from the graphics style / quality.
  4. Edmilan

    Edmilan Well-Known Member

    Dec 2, 2011
    same here, although gameplay should also be good. But for me, the presentation must be good before i play it i.e. graphics. We got all the super powerful devices and Metal, but devs give us 8 or 16bit? it's a personal preference though
  5. Shaun Musgrave

    Shaun Musgrave Well-Known Member

    Jul 8, 2013
    Freelance writer, teacher, business owner
    Ibaraki, Japan
    It's never really been the technology holding back 3D RPGs from appearing on iOS. Well, not for a long time, anyway. It's more to do with budget, manpower, and expected return on investment.

    Anyway, I don't have a preference, personally, as long as it's done well. I think there's considerable beauty in well-done sprites, especially if they're well-animated. 3D is also nice, but it has its drawbacks. Battles are often slower and have fewer enemies on the field to conserve the polygon budget, while party sizes also tend to be smaller for the same reason, resulting in simplified strategies and less customization in the party build.

    If someone was to go all-out and roll a Square PS1/PS2-era budget on an iOS original 3D RPG, I'd definitely be all for it. Variety is the spice of life and all that. But I just can't see many companies taking that kind of risk in the current market conditions.
  6. RoboWarrior

    RoboWarrior Well-Known Member

    Oct 3, 2012
    I agree, definitely not a fan of pixel graphics. I understand it may be a designer choice but for most of the time (at least the games I've experienced) its an excuse for something else. I would consider PS2 the minimum graphics for an RPG, most pixel art games I have simply stopped playing since I never enjoyed their appeal.
  7. Montanx

    Montanx Well-Known Member

    Mar 3, 2012
    San Diego
    I am always happier with SNES FF6, chrono trigger, Dragon quest 5 type pixel graphics for my RPGs. I feel they represent the best fit for for the genre. There is huge potential for these kinds of graphics to look good and even improve upon the remakes and remasters that have come out that haven't quite nailed it.

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