Frequently and Infrequently Asked Questions

What is all this RetroBravery stuff?

RetroBravery is a repository of retro game challenge runs, mostly focusing on RPGs from the NES and SNES era. It's intended to serve as a reference and randomizer for people who love old school games but have grown bored of playing them normally, and are looking for a new twist on their favorite games. For people especially bored, RetroBravery also offers an "I'm Feeling Brave!" button that will do all the thinking for the would-be player; selecting a game, a challenge, and making all the selections for them.

Why?

I'm a speedrunner and challenge gamer myself. I love reading about new run categories, challenges, and crazy game modes that people come up with. Originally all I wanted to do was provide a web-based tool for people interested in Final Fantasy V: Four Job Fiesta who didn't want to use their Twitter bot, or wanted to start a run between FJF seasons. Once I began writing that, friends began chiming in with their off-the-wall challenge mode ideas for other games (see: FFVI: Go Go Gogo) and I decided to create an API and wrapper for quickly prototyping challenge mode pages on a website.

Why retro? Why not add newer stuff too?

I haven't fully written off adding newer games. However I feel that games have become far more cinematic and scripted in recent years. Not many games from the past few generations can be twisted and have their rules changed, and even fewer can be beaten as quickly as the games from yesteryear. Furthermore, I feel that older games have been around long enough now that they can use a revival in the form of these new playstyles and challenges.

All that said, we'll see how it goes. I may change my mind.

Why "Bravery"?

It comes from a challenge mode used in League of Legends and DotA. People playing Bravery LoL or DotA would use a randomizer to dictate their hero, build, and items. This often led to hilariously ineffective builds, but the concept was being brave enough to allow a randomizer to pick every aspect of how you played the game.

Similarly, the bravest people using RetroBravery allow the system to pick every aspect of how they play. See the "I'm Feeling Brave!" button on the main site.

I have a challenge mode idea, will you put it up?

Maybe. Send it to me; here's my contact page.

What are you looking for in new challenge modes

I don't have a set of ironclad rules, but in general...

  1. It has to be accessible without amazing knowledge of the game. Low-level runs are fun, but are almost impossible to pull off without a step-by-step guide on where to go and what to do for example. Same with "Find everything" runs. These should come with a guide on how to do them.
  2. They have to be accessible without hacks or prior savefiles. Lufia II Ancient Cave runs come to mind. There's potential there for challenge runs, but you have to beat most of Lufia II to even reach the Ancient Cave. Not fun for people who don't have a save handy already.
  3. It has to make sense, somehow. It doesn't need to be consistent with the lore, but if a challenge is completely off the wall for no reason it's not going to be engaging or fun to the player. Banning things because they're overpowered, make the game easy, or because removing them is consistent with the game lore are all fine.
  4. It should have a clear goal and clear rules. "Get as far as you can" is not a clear goal, and something like "No using your favorite character" is not a clear, objective rule.

All that said, it boils down to "Would this be fun?". If something violates all of the above rules and would still be fun/funny/challenging, I'd probably still use it.

Are you going to give the site an actual... design?

IT HAS ONE NOW!!! .... kind of. For a year this was just a plain black on white page with no styling. On 22 Jan 2016 I slapped a stylesheet on it. I suck at actually making websites look pretty. If someone creates a mock-up, I can do the CSS magic to make it happen, but my talents lie in code, not design.

How do I share the challenge I got? It re-rolls every time I refresh the page!

Fear not! If you scroll to the bottom of the challenge page (just before comments), you'll find a URL that will return the exact challenge you're looking at whenever it's viewed. This works by forcefully seeding the RNG before any random selections are made. This should be pretty stable between views of the challenge, but if I upgrade Python on the server, the seeding method may change and break old links. I don't think this'll happen; sorry in advance if it does.

Also if you want to play with seeds, you can pass "seed=FOO" as a GET parameter to any page in Bravery. FOO can be an integer (38103) or a string (NOOT NOOT!).