RPG Maker XP? For Real!?! Have I Fallen Into A Parralel Universe!?!

My frickin gosh, it looks like they’re really, finally done it. RPG Maker XP. In English. To buy. For money. LEGITIMATELY.

See http://www.enterbrain.co.jp/tkool/RPG_XP/eng/index.html

and http://www.download.com/RPG-Maker-XP/3000-7537_4-10439795.html?tag=lst-0-1

For those who aren’t familiar with the RPG Maker 95/2000/2003 Saga, this is sort of like Shane Hensley saying “Oh by the way, I put up a PDF of Deadlands Reloaded last month. Did I forget to mention that?” (Okay, it’s not an exact comparison, because Deadlands Classic, GURPS and d20 weren’t translated from Japanese into English by a crazy Russian guy, but I mean it’s also something I really, really wanted for several years.)

I was one of the few people on the old Don Miguel’s RPG World boards that was leading the “campaign” to get RPG Maker 2000 available in English legitimately. RPG Maker 2000 was a pirate translation of RPG School 2000 (which was only available in English because of the pirate translation). I used RM2k because I couldn’t pay for it without importing it (which I did try to do at one point) and I couldn’t use an imported version, even if I wanted to, because I couldn’t understand it. But now I am genuinely ecstatic to FINALLY be able to purchase RPG Maker XP in English.

I’ll post an in-depth review after I get it. I expect to be happy, and I suspect that I won’t be dissapointed.

UPDATE: The Download.com link told me I was sending money directly to Enterbrain when I made my purchase, so I’m pretty darn sure it’s legit. I’m using up a little of my precious-but-crusty-old-modem-bandwidth to post this while it’s slowly downloading. Soon, my precious will be here… yesssssss… My precioussssssss…

UPDATE 2: Oh. My. Frickin. Gosh. This thing is good. I did notice a couple annoying things right away, such as the fact that it doesn’t come with any example games. ARGH! Also, there are a few “Engrish” typos including one amusing one in the End-User-License-Agreement, but hey, it wouldn’t be RPG Maker without amusing typos. (“Dextality” for one)

But I’ve been playing around with it a bit and noticing a lot of stuff I like. At first I just noticed that they added pretty much everything I wish they had added to RPG School 2003 and a bunch of stuff that I hadn’t thought of specifically but is pretty darn nice. Everything I loved about RM2k is still there and upgraded with more options. Plus, the RTP is fairly comprehensive, including the equivalent of pretty much everything from previous RTPs but with even more stuff added.

Then I had a look at the script editor. Tears of joy started to appear at the edges of my eyes. Because, you see, the entire thing is now customisable. That I had not expected. Let me type that again with a wide grin: The entire thing is customisable! From the way damage is calculated to exactly what happens on the title screen. The entire guts, not just the battle system, has been opened up for us Frankenstein-wannabes to tinker with to our hearts content. This is no longer the Lego of RPGs, my freinds. This is now the Software Development Kit of RPGs, quite literally! Somehow the title “RPG Maker” just isn’t adequate anymore. Sure, you have to learn RGSS to use it, but it’s pretty straightforward if you’re a programming geek.

Enterbrain, I love you guys! Absolutely worth $60 and the 5 years (between my discovery of RM2k and the release of RMXP) that I had to wait. The only thing I’m really disappointed with is the lack of an example game. I do have a bit of RM2k experience, but a look through a complete game to refresh the memory and tinker with would have been the icing on the icing.

UPDATE 3: The shortcut thing was my fault for not being able to tell the difference between the control and alt keys at 2AM. So the only thing I’m dissapointed with is the lack of an example game.

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