350/366 – Companion Recruitment Fun Time In Games

If there’s one thing that I love about RPGs and strategy games, it’s the recruitment and companion element. Whether it’s as small as 3 other people or as numerous as 100+, being able to find and pick up people for your party that work together towards your common goal, mission or endgame has always been some of the most fun I’ve had in those types of games.

I think part of the reason for this is the fact that companion recruitment and building plays into the satisfying feeling that most RPGs are built upon – the idea of personally putting together a force to be reckoned with and who can hold their own in any fight. While doing that with the main character is always a given considering you’re personally controlling them, having it done with your companions as well, both as you gain them and as you build them, makes the building experience all the better.

That’s not to say just having characters to recruit is enough. For me, they have to have their own personalities, backstories, and ideas, and I have to be able to work with them in their own unique way. It’s not enough to have masses of faceless characters to pick up – that’s where some games I’ve tried sort of fall flat in terms of providing generic, yet numerous characters with a spread-thin backstory. When the cast is both fairly large and you have a chance to build up their backstories as well as their levels, that’s ideal for me. Partying together and running adventures while at the same time forging bonds and friendships (and sometimes even romances) is a core element of RPGs that I think has become more explicit in recent entries, and it’s great for the player because preferences become apparent and people are given a choice about which characters feel like they’re right for the job.

Combine this with the ability to make choices or go down different paths for different characters or have a way to build or equip in unique ways by character, and having companions to recruit and work with becomes een more appealing. It’s probably why when it comes to RPGs, I’ll always pick up the ones that allow you to A)start mostly on your own and build your party and B)not have you as the main protagonist that rolls through things all the way through. Characterization is a big part of why RPGs work for lots of people, and the more in the RPG party, the merrier it inevitably is for gameplay.

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