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Messages - Aeolus

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1
Single-Player RPGs / Re: super robot wars topic
« on: Yesterday at 11:27:44 PM »
http://www.siliconera.com/2018/02/19/super-robot-wars-xs-second-trailer-features-new-original-characters-and-robot-on-robot-action/

New trailer for SRWX. OGs this time are magic inquisitor on the run from the magic inquisition and girl who is good with magic. Butler Bird and Ravensoft Wizard Mech are both cool and good, and the villain/rival/whatever looks dapper as well.

2
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (no not X)
« on: Yesterday at 11:20:07 PM »
Btw, they've figured out the Rare Blade pulling mechanics and its extremely Gacha levels of bullshit.

Anybody who got KOS-MOS should count their blessings as they pulled her on a 0.01% chance (well spun up to 0.0714% chance with a Legendary Core, 999 Luck and at least one Booster of the Light/Dark element).

For the rest of us, don't bother throwing your unwanted Rares back into the pool since you're hurting your chances.

3
Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: Yesterday at 10:56:08 PM »
Another day, another crash over at SoM camp. Currently taking Jerk's trial. On the plus side, this should be an easy Platinum since there's only two places you need to grind for the 'get every item' and 'get all weapons to Level 9, spells to Level 8' trophies.

4
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (no not X)
« on: Yesterday at 10:44:45 PM »
Also, Aeolus, nothing on Xenoblade X? It's just the best RPG with mechs and a strong desire for bigger guns?

Sorry, it takes awhile for these to come out.

But yeah. I don't think you'd like XBCX's plot or characters if XBC2's is giving you this much trouble.

Plotwise, XBCX is basically a hot mess since it starts with the premise of humanity escaping total annihilation and crash landing on a mysterious planet, and ends with jobbing the equivalent of space mobsters for awhile. Humanity is still basically screwed, the guy who betrayed everybody is still kicking around somewhere, there's still no explanation as to what was the specific deal was with that Black Super Mech or if there are more like it around, and even the planet's mystery never really gets solved. That said, it does have the most well written sidequests in the series since a number of them involve adding new civilizations to the suburbs of NLA, the subsequent race wars, the troubles of establishing safe drinking water supplies, and the horrors of fetching Ice Cream Cake, among others.

Characters however are basically a total disappointment. Your party will almost always end up being the MC, Elma, Linn and one other of your choice/whoever's needed, out of the 14+ playable characters in the game, due to plot requirements. Also all PCs are humans excepting the blue skinned humanoid or the female human humanoid. Tatsu the Nopon, nor any member of the other 7+ non-earthican races are playable, and mechanically speaking, they're all more or less cut from the same cloth as everybody uses a mixture of two different Classes out of the game's 28. And which the custom PC gets all 28 anyways, which would ultimately drive players to seek other PCs to fill out roles and builds, if the game were a true multiplayer environment instead of a fake 'recruit this Ally unit to your party instead of a fourth character'.

The ground gameplay itself is an interesting take on XBC1's mechanics by adding dual weapon slots that you could switch between on the fly (one for Melee and another for Ranged, with your chosen class determining what weapons you use and what type you specialize in, though generally every class will give you options for both), double cooldowns (first one lets you use the Art while the second boosts its effects substantially), soul voices (allies give you commands for you to trigger for healing and party wide buffs), TP (reworked tension that replaces XBC1's Tension levels and the Chain Gauge for revival and supermode purposes), and Overclocking (replaces Chain Attacks as the one supermode to rule them all; greatly boosts cooldown speeds, replicates the Art color combo meter for damage/effect boosts, and can be retriggered during the current Overclock to carry over the combo bonus; unlike Chain Attacks though, time doesn't stop so you're still in a damage race, but you did just throw on the Nitrus).

Character customization largely comes from Skills since Arts from one class tree do not carry over to the other trees (though advanced classes can use everything that came from their preceding classes), Equipment is level locked, and Augments (re: XBC1's Gems) are ridiculously specialized and extremely hard to craft until the post game grind due to anything that might seem generally useful requires mountains of rare drops off of late/end/postgame mobs and UMs (on the order of requiring 40 copies of one of the four or five mats for two or three of said mats needed to craft said Augment, the other two generally come from the Global Fights which is its own rigmarole; you'll spend almost all of the main game running about 5 +XX% damage to Machines or Beasts or Humanoids on each character and little else since they're not prohibitively expensive; admittedly there is a method to use an ingame currency to purchase any of the game's Aug crafting mats, but earning the currency requires engaging in the game's sudo multiplayer and you'll still need wheelbarrels full of the stuff to get what you need). Skills on the other hand can be carried over from class to class and can provide general buffs like +20% to Melee or Ranged damage to hyper specific things like +XX% damage increase while fighting in a sandstorm. Generally your PC can equip up to 5 skills along with one other specific ally, Elma, Linn and most of the rest are limited to 4 skills (although they don't have as many to choose from) while there are a few allies who are stuck with 3 slots.

And then there are Skells... Which are pretty meh gameplaywise, since they jack up the numbers to a ridiculous degree, but the mechanics are boiled down to Arts coming from equipped weapons, with no double cooldown, no soul voices, and Overdrive goes from a 'flip out and blender everything' mode to temporary invincibility with a full Arts pallet recharge. Flight also turns the game from this massive open world into a significantly smaller sandbox as environmental issues stop becoming a thing. The Skells themselves are basically a linear track from your starting Level 20 unit, to the Level 30 series, with the Level 50 series being the effective cap beyond super Skells (i.e. the Level 60 series and stuff like the Ares 90). And from there its basically crafting 20+ of those +XX% damage to Machines/Beasts/Humanoids/Superbosses for each of your Skells because each weapon has like 3 slots with Skells sporting up to 8 weapons on top of the slots for each Armor piece. Also, fighting in Skells have some of the worst music playing ♪"On a whole different plan~et!"♪ while the flight music isn't bad persay but takes forever to get past the intro, which you won't be doing nine times out of ten because every little hop takes it from the top and every brush with the ground kills it dead.

The rest of the game's music is generally hit or miss. Sadly the misses are generally concentrated in major hubs like NLA ♪"1, 2, 3, 4, 5, oo! Ooo!"♪ while the hits are standard Swano bombastic flair (which does sound amazing, but unfortunately that's basically all he does well, and he got rather prolific on top of that, so it all kinda sounds samey to his other soundtracks).

Environments look really pretty though even if they all boil down to Plains Land, Jungle Land, Desert Land, Ice/Blue Crystal Land, Lava Lava Land.

5
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Secret of Mana: The Remake!
« on: February 18, 2018, 02:23:37 AM »
I take back anything nice I've said about this remake/port/bare naked nostalgia cashgrab. It takes an almost dedicated level of phoned-in effort to make a notoriously buggy game even more busted and unstable. Christ almighty, the goddamn overworld music cuts out when you go to take a screengrab of the face and it has yet to come back for me. Not that I'm missing much as the remixed music has been far more miss than hit (I'll admit to liking the redux'd Desert music, but buttrock Matango, "no we are going to include the roars when using Angel's Fears and thus not actually get a chance to listen to the damn song" White Dragon legend bit, the lighthouse theme abortion, and about a dozen other overdone tracks (like Scorpion Army's theme), really drag the whole experience down; thankfully Crystal Forest and Ice Palace managed to break even, but it really doesn't salvage the rest of the experience). And that's on top of the five crashes I've experienced so far, shit like spell animations getting so queried up that I step back into a room I had left earlier only to have said spell fire off out of loving nowhere, both enemies and AI allies getting pushed out of bounds on a regular basis, casting a Fire Bouquet and having Analyzer come out, and hilariously awful (if at all) voice direction at times.

The added scenes or the ninja'd in Pukka reference (hell, I've been hitting references that I don't even recognize like the doll in Todo or the picture Mandala) do not make up for all of the instability I've seen thus far. This is just a really lazy port and I'd advise people to stay away from this or any other Squeenix 'remake' in the future.

Also, I love how much nicer the weapon redesigns are, except for the poor whip which only got pallet swaps even though we're in Flail territory dammit. The Axes aren't getting much love either, but at least there's actual visual differences between them versus the three different Black Leather Whips.




...okay. I'll admit it. I kinda do like how much easier it is to grind Weapon/Spell Skill levels are in this game. Especially since the changes made are both simple and utterly mindbogglingly obvious these changes are. The first is the obvious change to the Girl and Sprite's weapon level growth not being half of the Boy's rate, while the second is simply allow MP to also be restored upon leveling up (even if it makes getting to those added scenes even stupider since there's almost no reason to ever stay at an Inn or even revisit the Wind/Water Palaces for their free healing).

6
RPGFan: Site / Re: RPGFan Games of the Year 2017
« on: February 16, 2018, 12:56:04 PM »
Because I didn't feel like necroing the P5 or the Random and Amazing Pictures threads for this.

Quote




"Do you guys sell videogames here?"



"We sell forbidden objects from places men fear to tread."



"We also sell Conception II!"



"I'm just looking for a JRPG that isn't Final Fantasy."



"Hm..."



"Perhaps..."



"This will please the gentleman."



"Take this game, but beware, it carries terrible anime."



"Ooh, that's bad."



"It also has a cool UI."



"Ooh, that's good!"



"You can fuck your high school teacher."



"Ooh, that's bad."



"But its a counter-cultural game about tearing the rich and powerful down!"



"Ooh, that's good."



"However, it's ultimately a game made by old Japanese men that reinforces cultural values of conformity and changing the system from within slowly over time without rocking the boat. In this way it is a very conservative game, despite its pretenses of fighting the system."





"That's bad."



"Can I go now?"

7
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Secret of Mana: The Remake!
« on: February 16, 2018, 11:55:01 AM »
So I went on a bit of a shopping spree yesterday and picked this up alongside other PS4 games like Horizon and Berseria.

Anyways, I'm currently doofing around in Elinee's Castle (or I was until the game crashed). Impressions so far include feeling that the redux tracks are rather hit and miss (the track that plays during the point where the people of Potos tells you to scram was overdone and has some mood dissonance now that it didn't have before; whereas the track that plays when the Elder tells Randi about his Randi's Mom enjoys a nice aural background to go with it), but thankfully you can also switch between the two tracks at flick of a switch.

As for those of you who are worried about facing Spikey Tiger again, fear not. The game now has an Easy Mode (well, its less of a mode, so much as its an option to allow you to carry more items (up to 12).

Everything else is pretty faithful for the most part so far. Though perhaps some of the dialog is perhaps a bit too faithful. What changes I have seen have actually helped though since the dialogue involving Dyluck, Primm and her father makes their situation a little bit clearer. On that note, the alternate route is intact.

And for Easter Eggs, I've been spotting pictures of AoM characters like the MC, Bogard and Maurice scattered about.

I have been hearing mixed feelings about it. I have never played the original and it sounds like I might just sit tight and wait for a sale later this year. My backlog is my main focus this year and if I pick this up for my Vita this fall, no sweat. It is a bummer to hear the OG fans of the game are disappointed with a lot of the game. Can't win them all I guess.

I wont argue that getting this at $40 bux was a bit much, but for the most part, it seems like a decent update. Its not the remake that something like FE:Echoes received last year, but I haven't seen it cut down in any noticeable way so far (okay, other than the Cannon Travel not showing the party flying through the air, that was an unfortunate cut). Really, my only major complaint is the redone music sounding overdone more often than not.

Besides, you can still play this with 3 players (I haven't tried this yet). Additionally, if your party members do get stuck they won't keep you from advancing (although they also don't eventually run back to the party either; if someone gets caught on the level geometry, then they're stuck there; enemies spawn in faster and are generally more aggressive than in the original too so you can easily get someone clobbered to death if you're just darting through a high level area).

8
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Ni No Kuni 2 Revenant Kingdom announced!
« on: February 16, 2018, 11:31:42 AM »
So, anyone in the US who is looking forward to this, Best Buy just listed the digital preorder in error, at $20.

https://www.bestbuy.com/site/ni-no-kuni-ii-revenant-kingdom-premium-edition-playstation-4/6201525.p?skuId=6201525

Enjoy.  Not sure how long this error will be up, but it's an absurdly good deal.  Less than half of what you would pay even as an Amazon Prime member.

I think I'll wait for Gamestop's next Anime Sale for a physical copy instead. If they're willing to drop Tales of Berseria down to $20 bux for a new copy, then I can believe that they'll do the same for this.

9
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Secret of Mana: The Remake!
« on: February 16, 2018, 02:46:14 AM »
So I went on a bit of a shopping spree yesterday and picked this up alongside other PS4 games like Horizon and Berseria.

Anyways, I'm currently doofing around in Elinee's Castle (or I was until the game crashed). Impressions so far include feeling that the redux tracks are rather hit and miss (the track that plays during the point where the people of Potos tells you to scram was overdone and has some mood dissonance now that it didn't have before; whereas the track that plays when the Elder tells Randi about his Randi's Mom enjoys a nice aural background to go with it), but thankfully you can also switch between the two tracks at flick of a switch.

As for those of you who are worried about facing Spikey Tiger again, fear not. The game now has an Easy Mode (well, its less of a mode, so much as its an option to allow you to carry more items (up to 12).

Everything else is pretty faithful for the most part so far. Though perhaps some of the dialog is perhaps a bit too faithful. What changes I have seen have actually helped though since the dialogue involving Dyluck, Primm and her father makes their situation a little bit clearer. On that note, the alternate route is intact.

And for Easter Eggs, I've been spotting pictures of AoM characters like the MC, Bogard and Maurice scattered about.

10
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (no not X)
« on: February 15, 2018, 12:59:00 PM »
To answer these in order:

There are a couple of fights where the plot interrupts them in XBC1, but they're rare and a clearly not meant to be won with what you have when you fight them. These usually have something that happens within the same scene that usually changes things around (like unlocking a new Monado power), but the big reason for this is due to the Monado's chief mechanic of Mechon/Hom damage discrimination as well as the Face Mechon's primary plot gimmick (since its a lot easier to justify a loss when every attack you do is inflicting 1 HP worth of damage).

XBC1 presents its story in a far more linear manner since most of your plot progress involves climbing up the Bionis or the Mechonis. By the time you finish climbing the Mechonis you're ready for the endgame your typical Xenowhatever insanity sets in. The characters aren't as well integrated as in XBC2, but then the game's plot is minimal enough that you really don't need to visit Highfort to get the lowdown on Sten's situation.

XBC1's character growth is mostly focused on Experience Levels with Skills, Equipment, Gems and Arts on the side. Your Level is by far the most important thing to have for most of the game because it A) carries penalties to the lower leveled side, and B) determined how much character growth resources (i.e. AP for Arts and SP for Skills). If you're fighting an enemy at the same level, then you'll likely prevail barring fighting at a tactical disadvantage like being surrounded by a mob of enemies, bad terrain, Spike Damage, or kiting some Level 90 asshole that wandered in. If there's a level disparity though, your characters will either have a higher or lower damage modifier bonus and be more or less likely to Hit/Evade the enemy (which is absolutely critical due to a mechanic called Tension that rises as your team performs well and lowers as they do poorly and influences mechanics like damage, Hit and Evade and even the length of a Chain Attack which is the game's big money maker). That's why enemies with 10 levels or higher over your team have Red name tags since you're not supposed to be fighting these guys yet (you can spec for Red tag fights but that's generally end/postgame content since UM's go up to Level 120 in that game whereas your party caps at Level 99; and it mostly involves dumping as much as you can into Agility because that's the stat that governs your Hit and Evade rates).

Skills provide a bunch of passive traits like extra stats, auto-buffs at certain phases of battle, damage reduction from Spike Damage, extra healing from Chain Attacks or Critical Hits, higher Exp, AP or Gold gains, faster speeds for Auto-Attacks, higher odds to trigger Double Attacks, Critical Hits or debuffs, the ability to wear heavier equipment, or lower Agility penalties from wearing heavy equipment, massive stat buffs from fighting naked, and so on. Everyone starts the game with 3 Skill trees (set of 5 skills with progressively higher SP costs to unlock) and can obtain two additional trees through sidequests obtained by raising town affinities.

Equipment is largely valued by Gem Slots, followed by the Anti-Mechon and whether you're looking for higher Block, Crit rates or higher Auto-Attack damage for weapons, while Armor is basically what's your best Light Armor because Evade negates the need for high Defense and Ether can't be Evaded followed by what visual abomination you can slather your characters in/swimsuits (barring Seven who's gimmick is that all of her equipment have locked Gems and you're building based upon Speed/more conservative wear because the Speed equipment set is hella stripperiffic but is by far and away her best set).

Gems are divided into Weapon, Armor and General categories with basic stat buffs being General (can be worn on either Weapons or Armor), status effect guarding or auto-buff Gems being Armor, and everything else being Weapon (i.e. Haste, Double Attack, DoT multiplier bonuses, status debuffs, debuff modifiers, Critical bonuses, Elemental Damage bonuses, passive healing Gems, and so on), and further subdivided based upon the Level of the Gem (from 1~6 or I ~ VI ingame) with Level 1 providing anywhere from +1 to +5 to a base stat like Agility, whereas a Level 2 gem provides +6 to +10 Agility, while Level 3 provides +11 to +20, and so on to Level 6 gems which provides anywhere from +40 to +50 Agility (which is the cap for that particular Gem bonus, all Gems can't provide a bonus beyond the hard cap which Level 6 Gems will either reach or get close to; so your progression will go from not bothering with Gems beyond what you find, to indulging in the mini-game to make them for their maximum increase then stacking Agility gems to break the level curve, to farming end game enemies for the materials needed to craft top tier Gems so that you can maximize your bonuses).

Arts can be improved to increase damage output or length of the effect's duration as well as reducing cooldown length, all by a percentage, up to level 4 when first learned and levels 7 and 10 through Arts manuals (the lower level manuals can be bought in stores and is where most of your spending occurs; the latter manuals are all rare drops from endgame enemies aside from a couple found through sidequests or Monado Arts which only requires the mid-season upgrade).

There's also Party Affinity that increases the odds of performing longer Chain Attack chains, as well as improving Gem Crafting results (generally) and allowing for more Skill Linking which allows characters to share up to five Skills with other party members based upon the Skill's icon shape, Skill Coin costs (generated through levels and UM kills, and coins are refunded in full when Skills are removed from the Skill Link) and whether the original character has learned the Skill to begin with.

Fights in XBC1 vary in length depending on the difficulty of the fight and what your current level is. The thing to note is that trash mobs leave you alone past a certain level threshold (when the party has +5 levels over them as they are no longer worth fighting beyond fulfilling quest conditions). But generally a solid fight will last about a minute or two, more if they're stronger, less if they're weaker or aren't as capable, and you absolutely want to bench Sharla ASAP since she's all about healing and support, can't Chain Attack well at all, has like 3 offensive Arts out of her 16, and is far more about keeping your team alive forever rather than providing offensive support. Fights also get substantially shorter once you start speccing for damage output as DoTs can melt Life Bars if done correctly, and Seven is a goddamn walking blender (of course she'll absolutely self-destruct at the mere sight of Spike Damage without heavy Spike Damage Reduction).


Now ask me about XBCX....

11
General Games / Re: Fire Emblem Heroes
« on: February 15, 2018, 02:41:34 AM »
Haven't had much time to play lately, but I did manage to finally pull a vanilla Lucina (+Def/-HP). I'd yell at her for being a pity rate breaker, but I was at 3.00%. I'm just one Lancina away from completing the set now.

Also, whoops. Sounds like somebody forgot to implement the BGM for the Shadow Dragon maps.


That's one phone down Edit: Welp. Just had to replace my old phone due to bad Wi-Fi connectivity. On the plus side, its bigger, better and stronger too, and I didn't miss out on much this these last couple of days (other than those AA quests). But its back to the catchup grind zone for me since all my leeway was spent in the process (time to burn me some pots).


Double Edit: Man, these T_T maps suck this time around. Too many split paths to get your Auto-battle AI chasing their tails while the enemy AI has no qualms at doubling back just to try to exploit triangle advantage. Also, it sucks that there weren't any Red bonus units this time around because the last map has a high chance for Greens, so you're pretty likely going to be forced to lose at least one team on that bullshit.

12
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (no not X)
« on: February 15, 2018, 01:38:35 AM »
Spoiler: show
The thing with Nia is a major bummer, because she and Rex actually have some kind of relationship. Even if it's non-romantic, it's better than whatever Rex has going with Homura/Hikari. I don't really want to trash on the game, so don't take this as a major point of contention, but Homura is really just awful. She has so little personality that I actually have this overall sense that she doesn't speak much throughout the game, because most of the time she opens her mouth, she has nothing of value to say. Hikari is generic tsundere, but she told Rex more of value in the ten seconds after she woke up than Homura has yet to say about anything. She's the better of the two, but it's like comparing brands of cardboard.

Nia, on the other hand, actually HAS a personality. She and Rex joke, fight, and comfort one another. I may have issues with the way they handled her being a member of Torna, but as a character she's one of the game's strongest. I used to hope that the game would end with Homura/Hikari sacrificing herself, leaving Rex and Nia alone.


I'm curious, have you played the first Xenoblade? I have many questions for somebody who has played both games.

Fire away.

(Although, I'll answer what is likely one of those questions right now by saying that XBC2 never really goes heavy into referencing XBC1's plot or characters. There are two notable (three if you count Nopons) exceptions to this but are incredibly unimportant to what's going on in this game. The first will show up in the next plot boss battle, but as long as you had a chance to play Super Smash Bros IV whatever or know literally anything about XBC1's protagonist Shulk, then you'll catch the reference in full. The second references the XBC metaplot, but its the metaplot and literally doesn't matter at this point. The Nopons of XBC1 aren't quite as shady as in this game, but are still pretty damn shady; the best example being Bana the Betrayer (incidentally XBC2's Bana is a third reference to XBC1 and just serves to flag an NPC as villainous immediately rather than in the 5 minutes it takes for him to ship Rex off to a cadre of shady KH rejects). Really, the most overt and deeply connected to the lore reference is fucking KOS-MOS.)

I can also field questions relating to XBCX (which I can tell you right away has no bearing on XBC2).

13
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (no not X)
« on: February 15, 2018, 12:33:07 AM »
I told you bro. I told you man. I told you about those clones.

Spoiler: show
And yeah, that was Nia totally confessing her undying love for Rex only to immediately ricochet off of his impenetrable JRPG protagonist density field into the friendzone. At the very least, you couldn't have picked a better day to see that cutscene (or thereabouts depending on timezones). Also, say hello to the best healer in the game. Seriously, the Scimitar has stupidly good healing passives that just turn Rex into an unending stream of both self regen and partywide healing, as well as providing him with his only direct healing Art which is also really good. The only downside is not having Nia around as a Driver, but you're basically trading a Healbot for an even better Healbot.

At least you're past the worst of it. Now let me tell you about the upcoming goofiness that is the plot cancer and Megaman Rex.

14
General Games / Re: Fire Emblem Heroes
« on: February 14, 2018, 02:40:42 AM »
Navarre is a pushover.

Indeed. I've already cleared him totally. Armor Emblem took the most effort due to that Blue Manakete. Once I was able to drop him, the rest fell into place. Infantry Emblem waxed Navarre's ass in one go, while Flier and Cavalry Emblem was focused on how to best leverage Galeforce shenanigans.


Anyways, the T_T is now up and the Seals this time are Threaten Atk, Fortress Res :thunk: and Armored Boots (the most legendarily devastatingly powerful item in all of Fire Emblem, a pair of boots). Yet another bone thrown to Armors (I haven't the Sacred Coins to keep up with all these SSs).

15
Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade Chronicles 2 (no not X)
« on: February 14, 2018, 02:22:03 AM »
The short answer is that
Spoiler: show
Pyra/Homura/Hikari/Angela Ballzac has horrible PTSD from the Aegis War and is more interested in offing herself than anything else (the only reason why she doesn't straight up act on this is because if she goes, Rex goes with her),
and Nia's privyness to Tormura's general activities and goals really doesn't matter since they just boil down to "Jin is Xeno-Sephiroth and Malos really just wants to burn the world down" with the remainder of Team Rocket being both there and largely irrelevant. Hell, Rex is already keyed in to the most important fact about the villains
Spoiler: show
Malos and Space Pope are operating on the same motivation wavelength.


As for the part about Rex not being worthy of the Aegis/Grail is that
Spoiler: show
he hasn't unlocked her final form yet which actually is about as bullshit as the game makes it out to be.


Nia's thing is about to be explained (although said explanation lies at the bottom of the game's worst segment; if you haven't fought the Phantom Menace yet, then you might as well remove that card from your Switch because its going to get worse; the upside is once you get through Chapter 7 and the start of Chapter 8 you're basically at the point where the game opens up significantly (although I think they've since fixed this); its also worth pointing out that if there is one thing worth seeing out of Chapter 7,
Spoiler: show
its seeing Rex live up to his role as a JRPG protagonist in the most Dense Motherfucker way possible
).

To be far more specific on Chapter 7's issues
Spoiler: show
the two big ones are the fact that Rex loses his main Blade which, aside from being his most reliable source of damage output, puts a halt on any Blade Quests that were active up to that point because they all require Pyra's/Homura's presence to proceed (Agate's the only real exception to this simply due to the fact that you really do need to be in Chapter 8 to complete her's anyways), and that the first half of Chapter 7 takes place in a gimmick dungeon. Said gimmick involves kneecapping every Driver not named Tora by locking Blade Arts down to Level 1 (i.e. no Blade Combos beyond what Tora brings to the table). That said, you can mitigate this somewhat through Driver Combos (i.e. Break > Topple > Launch > Smash). On top of that, there are a couple of annoying fights and Field Skill Checks (most involve elemental coverage tetris, but there are a few that require Rare Blade skills like Keen Eye and Ancient Wisdom), and also the dungeon's boss who's gimmick is summoning multiple clones at a certain damage threshold, so you can't bypass the gimmick due to limited damage output and most of your best AoE attacks are locked behind the dungeon gimmick as well, thus limiting your ability to crowd control; Morag is one of your best allies for this fight, and for the entire dungeon really, because Brigid's level 1 Blade Art is AoE and she can dodgetank to boot).


But yeah. This game is Tales of Levels of Anime.

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