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Messages - Ranadiel

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Single-Player RPGs / Re: Fire Emblem: [s]Tree[/s] Three Houses
« on: February 19, 2019, 06:38:07 AM »
Awesome updates Aelous. I do agree that the fact this world has a name is a good sign for world building. I'm not sure how I feel about another avatar character but I hope he/she is more like Robin or Kris than Corrin. Meaning other characters, primarily the students get a share of the character development spotlight.
Shouldn't that be more like Robin than Kris or Corrin? The one thing that I have heard about New Mystery is that Kris overshadows Marth making Marth look completely ineffective.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: January 21, 2019, 06:31:23 AM »
I had no idea Digimon Story - Cyber Sleuth would end up as a sort of spiritual sequel to the .hack series. Went in expecting a fun romp with my long time favorite 'mons and a silly anime plot, came out with a game full of heart, decent-to-great characters and god-tier music. A little gem, despite the rough edges here and there. Dat ending.
You should give Hacker's Memory a try. It is a side story that takes place in the same world as CS, and has the same feel. Plus it has a few gameplay improvements.

Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal
« on: December 16, 2018, 07:51:59 AM »
Hmmm, I know very little about the next season. Anyone can offer some insight?
Is this a sign I'm getting old?
I can give you my limited thought?

5-Toubun no Hanayome- So I know that some people in a Discord I frequent love the manga. I don't think the manga has an official release yet (or if it does I didn't notice), so I can't give personal thoughts on the quality. But they seem to like it and I believe it is fairly popular in Japan?

Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai: Tensai-tachi no Renai Zunousen- Watch this! The source manga is amazing an almost always makes me laugh heartily whenever I get a new volume.

Yakusoku no Neverland- The manga is fairly well received. Something about the art feels off to me, so I never read it but most everyone else seems to love the story. Well at least for the portions that are likely going to get covered (current arc is getting a lot of "Ehhs" but that would probably be season 2 or 3...if it got there).

I'll probably end up watching Kaguya and the Code Geass movie. I'll probably also watch some of 5-Toubun.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: November 23, 2018, 07:24:15 AM »

When the game first launched, KOS-MOS was the only non-Mythra Rare Blade to be of the Light Element. Your other Light Blade options were generics or Poppi with a Light Element Mod equipped (and the only way to obtain one of those was to win it from a rare drop from Level 5 of Tiger Tiger).

Although its more of a statement about just how absurdly stacked Rex was in options compared to everyone else.
There are no generic light blades, your options at launch were just Mythra, KOS-MOS, and Poppi QTpi (as I believe that is the only form that can equip the core). And personally I had worse luck getting a light core for Poppi than I did with rare blades (I spent 10+ hours on level 5 of Tiger Tiger and never got it). Not that you ever *need* a light blade beyond Mythra. Really people just wanted KOS-MOS because she was a returning character. The fact that she is one of the ten or so strongest blades is just a bonus.

Why do I have a feeling that Square Enix in terms of managements is a total dumpster fire?  Seriously, they can't seem to stay on schedule for any of their projects.
To some extent the problem is announcing things LONG before they are ready to be announced (e.g., if I recall correctly, the director for the FF7 Remake wasn't even aware he was directing it till after it was announced). The inability to get anything done in a reasonable time just compounds the problem. I feel like it might be that they have perfectionist directors that are obsessed with maxing out the graphics so high that it takes 3x as long to get anything done than if went with a slightly lower or more stylized graphics, but that is entirely speculation.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: September 30, 2018, 08:54:05 AM »
.hack//G.U. Last Recode - On the first game right now, and I have to say, boy am I glad I didn't play these games during the PS2 era and waited on buying the collection on the PS4 for a discount, since while the gameplay's fine by me, the rest of it seems really phoned-in. No lip movement during most cutscenes? Unskippable text during most story scenes? Insufferable voicework? No real visual upgrade other than being made widescreen? Sorry, that's not my idea of a "remaster." Zodiac Age did it way better.
Uhhh have you seen the original game? They tinkered with the graphics a LOT more than just making it widescreen. Gotta disagree with you regarding the voice work. Gaspard's not my favorite, but I think everyone else in the game ranges from fine to great, and most manage to get their characters perfect when they did their recordings for Vol. 4 a decade later.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dragon Quest XI looks glorious
« on: September 25, 2018, 06:50:05 AM »
I think Ranadiel's much more experienced than I am with JRPGs so I have assume that his criticisms have real merit.  However, hating on the town design is pure insanity.  The towns in this game are about as "generic" as pasta in Italy; sure it's what you expect, but it's flipping amazing and each bite is a sensation.  The attention to detail in the art direction is superlative and really pulls the player in.  Or at least it does me.
I genuinely just don't get what you are seeing in them. I guess I kinda liked the setup in the slums? But barely enough to be worth a mention.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dragon Quest XI looks glorious
« on: September 24, 2018, 06:43:35 AM »
^ have you played any of the other DQ games? (I'm assuming you have since you play everything)
I have played DQ 1-3 and 5-8. I'd say overall I liked most of them (3 being an exception as it kept going and going after I started getting bored with it so I ended up quitting it). However the last time I played one was 8 around when it got released, so I it is entirely possible that my tastes have changed since I last played DQ8 since as you say, I play everything.

Comparing Dragon Quest to Persona is like comparing Coke Classic to New Coke. Dragon Quest stopped trying to be 'with it' ages ago (around the Zenthian trilogy to be precise) and has been, by and large, for the better for it, meanwhile Persona is like watching Homer Simpson saunter into an early 90s Grunge Metal concert in full Reggae and it just comes off as sad sometimes.

Hell, a great example is your complaints about Sylvando's archetype (from what I've seen, he's nowhere near as bad as the more common version of his archetype has been portrayed; I'd even say that chief mechanical officer from Guren Lagann is a more offensive example even though he was considered to be a breath of fresh air back when that show first came out), compared to Persona 4 having you beat the gay shame out of one of your party members and tomboy shame out of another one.
I do not get that metaphor Homer Simpson metaphor at all :P Anyways both of them are doing silent protagonist, and I was using Persona as an example of an instance where I though the silent protagonist worked. There really aren't that many games that still use silent protagonists these days, so I have to go with what is available. Although another comparison I thought of making is that the Luminary felt like the (male) Inquisitor from Dragon Age Inquisition to me as, despite having a voice, the Inquisitor was played extremely emotionless which made him have a lot of the same issues that I had with the Luminary despite having both a voice and player chosen dialogue (it was weird). However I am not sure how many people would get that comparison. XP

I'll agree that Sylvado is not the worst example of that trope that I have seen. He is depicted as being genuinely strong, but I still felt like the intent was a joke that I didn't find funny. It might have been "better delivered," but it still made me cringe a little.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dragon Quest XI looks glorious
« on: September 23, 2018, 09:09:04 AM »
I've had a few days to let my thoughts on this game sit after beating it, and so I am going to post my thoughts. This is a lot more detailed than I would normally do (hell normally I would probably just forget about the game and move on), but the insane amount of love this game has gotten makes me feel it is necessary to at least provide a (hopefully well-reasoned) analysis since I strongly disagree.

TL;DR Executive Summary: I found the game to be incredibly mediocre. There is nothing the game does to make me hate it, but there is nothing it does particularly well (except for maybe puns, but that is not a grading criteria for me).

They were fine? I don't really have a lot to say here. I'm just getting the non-spoiler stuff out of the way. I've seen better graphics in other games, but they were not close to being distractingly bad. My one complaint that could go under here (because I don't want to make a section just for it) is that the camera was on occasion bad. I had multiple instances where I would get into a random encounter and a tree branch would be blocking half the screen. I could move the camera, but the moment someone else got a turn, the camera would snap back to having half the screen blocked. Also the camera had issues with trees occasionally while exploring off the beaten path.

I'm sure for some the music was nostalgic, but I was sick of it by the time I got to Gallopolis. The music did not do a good job of setting mood (e.g., a desert having the same music as a tundra) and I have heard all of these songs countless times before even picking this game up.

Voice Acting
I have a negative impression on the VAing in the game, but I can't really think of too many examples of VAing that I disliked beyond Gemma and Serena (plus nearly everyone's pep up screams). So maybe it isn't as bad as I am thinking as I did think some characters like Rab did a decent job.

The menu in this game is incredibly clunky and their is absolutely no reason it has to be as clunky as it was. I found that 70%+ of the time when I went to the menu, I wanted something from the bottom right menu option (Other?) which happened to just be a sequential list of options. This could have been made so much more elegant. I realize that the main menu only has six options out of nostalgia, but there are better ways to organize things than hiding the options that are frequently used. Like have the skill tree being under the attributes menu instead of the quarter of the way down a giant list of options that include some frequently used and some infrequently used. I also found inventory management to be a pain as on occasion I would try to equip something only to be told the character had too much stuff. So I had to go from equipment to items and then select the item, choose who to give it to, and then confirm. Whole thing could have been simplified by either giving me the option to put something away when I tried to equip something beyond what I could carry or better yet make square put things in my bag so it is less tedious to manage the minor drops that you accumulate.

It is standard turn based combat with no interesting twists to the system. It was a serviceable battle system, but that was about it. Other than when I was metal slime hunting, pepping was just sort of there, being too random to rely on. Really what I will probably remember the longest about the combat is how RNG it felt like it was. Like fighting the same group of enemies, I could either clear them in one turn or spend 5 turns trying to clear them (maybe a slight exaggeration) because they happened to go early and happened to get some turn stealing status effects on all or most of my characters. Never really became a threat, but the whole thing just ended up being tedious whenever I couldn't one round the enemies. Of course if I tried to flee, it would take about 5 attempts even when I was high enough level for the enemy to run on sight from me, so yeah the ocean was fun since I didn't exactly have the option to avoid tedious fights there.

Town Design
I would normally not put a section here on this, but I have seen people gushing over the town design, and well it was incredibly generic. We had a village, a caste town, Japan town, castle town with desert, castle town with snow, etc. They did nothing particularly interesting with their locale and did nothing to imply any sort of scale beyond what we saw...(Act 2 spoilers)
Spoiler: show
Which is sort of a problem when they imply later in the game when they imply that thousands of people died in an event, and well I don't think there are even 200 people alive on the continent.

This section is going to be a whopper. I don't think there are any problems with the story conceptually. It could have worked, and I am sure I have seen the concepts work in other games, but I think various aspects, especially the characters, hurt their ability to tell this story as effectively as possible. Hard part here is trying to figure out where to even start. For starters, there are some issues relating to writing such as there is one point in the game where you start to look for a McGuffin. When the McGuffin is initially brought up it is in the context of "Well we need to get someplace, we don't don't know how, but this McGuffin is connected to that place so it could be a starting point? Maybe?" Later with no intervening dialogue about the nature of the McGuffin, we have a character screaming about how the McGuffin was going to show us how to get to the place we needed to go to despite no one ever suggesting that before. Before I get into individual characters, I do have to comment about the big bad during Act 2.
Spoiler: show
This big bad is a complete and total mess if you look at everything he did. So after being in hibernation (or w/e) for a ridiculous long period of time (for no known reasons?), he shows up an destroys a nation. Okay. Why? We never got a reason why he destroyed the nation and then didn't go on to destroy the others. There was nothing really indicating that any of the other nations could have stopped his army of monsters back then. But fine, let's say that nation and only that nation was a threat to him. His next action was to attack another nation to try and kill the Luminary. Alright killing the Luminary makes sense as a goal if he thinks the Luminary can stop him. When he fails, he becomes king to influence opinion and set things up so that when the Luminary shows up (either the same or the next generation), the people will kill the Luminary for him. Staying consistent with killing the Luminary. He proceeds to have his minions try to kill the Luminary throughout the game. Okay, and then when you get to the end of Act 1, he steals the mark from the Luminary while he is still alive and that is a necessary step of his plan...WAT? His whole plan to take over the world tree depended on him stealing power from the Luminary, which he could have easily done while the Luminary was a baby without attacking the castle and on gathering the six drago...orbs which he never showed any interest in doing. So he literally only succeeded in his grand vision because of his own incompetence.

Another Act 2 thing to comment on is that they kind of shot themselves in the foot with a lot of Act 2. The mermaid queen sets things up like all of humanity is on the verge of being destroyed. There is just one Last Bastion of humanity that has yet to fall to the darkness. It was an effective set up. And then they fucked it up because it turns out had the people of Last Bastion just gone west for an hour, they would have been in a city that was pretty much untouched by monsters. Oops. Oh and Last Bastion is kind of a wrong name since it turns out only one city was actually destroyed (or really even slightly damaged), so you know there were a bunch of other bastions of humanity just sort of sitting around. Emergency averted! Because the mermaid queen was exaggerating. Good job team!

Oh wait, just thought of another thing I want to touch on before going into individual characters: (Act 2 spoilers)
Spoiler: show
So the Luminary's father storyline...that ending was nowhere near as happy as the game seemed to think it was. You free your father's spirit from being tormented for eternity by a demon and he hears his wife's voice welcoming him back. Problem is that we established that the big bad had ruined the whole natural cycle of life and death and if I recall correctly he was basically absorbing the dead in place of the world tree (and was going out of his way to pick up spirits like Rab's master that were avoiding being absorbed). So when you freed our father from being tormented by the demon, you sent him directly into the belly of the big bad. Oops.
That bit really made me feel like the minor story arcs were written independently of each other with little communication between the writers.

We're finally getting to characters! And we start with the worst one. Yes I know DQ does silent protagonists. I don't hate silent protagonists as a concept. As examples, I think Adol and Joker are both silent protagonists done well. The Luminary however did not work for me. I feel the most necessary component for a silent protagonist to work is for there to be some sort of personality behind the character. It doesn't necessarily have to be deep or well developed but something needs to be there. Adol has a love of adventure deeper than the ocean. Joker has a distaste for justice. That's all you really need. The Luminary has none of that, and he is kind of stupid. Really he came off to me as just sort of a piece of cardboard cut into a human shape. (Spoilers including up to Act 3)
Spoiler: show
We see very emoting from him. His home town gets destroyed and possibly everyone he cares about is dead, and he stares blankly on. If the main character, which has spent years in the village doesn't care, I don't see why I should. The one time I can really recall him emoting was when he was on the fishing boat and cried. So he apparently cared more about the Mermaid Queen than he did his own mom? Good thing the Mermaid Queen was perfectly safe and no damage was done to her kingdom at all. Oh right Act 3 stuff. So at the beginning of Act 3, we see multiple instances in which the Luminary basically attempts to have the world destroyed again by giving the main villain a chance to steal the artifact that he knows villain needs to destroy the world. Thankfully the true big bad managed to save the world from his stupidity. Really feels like that would have been resolved hd the Luminary been able to talk and you know explain what was going on.

I like him a lot more than I probably should because he makes me think of Ban from Seven Deadly Sins who is a much more fun character. I really felt like he had no character worth mentioning during Act 1. His plot in Act 2 was probably one of the better ones?
Spoiler: show
I feel it would have worked better had there been some kind of lead up to it during Act 1 such as him being uncomfortable in the snow castle city or maybe have the priest recognize him during Act 1. The sister plot itself was...fine? It didn't move me because Erik was just kind of there with minimal presence during most of the game, but I can't think of any flaws with the plot itself.

Despite speaking, I think she might actually be more boring than the cardboard cutout of a main character. (Act 2 spoilers)
Spoiler: show
Thing I will always remember her for is the most poorly done hair cutting scene I have seen in Japanese media. I know it is a trope, but it did not work here. Not at all. Heck, thinking about it, I'm not even really sure there was any sort of change to her personality after that scene. I at least can't remember her acting any differently post-that scene at least. And that would just make the scene even more hilarious since it becomes extra pointless.

Probably the most entertaining of the party members? I don't think I have much of anything to complain about regarding her.

I was not looking forward to talking about Sylvando. His backstory is fine (if perhaps a bit...odd). However everytime he was on screen, it felt like it was supposed to be a joke with the punchline of "He's effeminate!" I don't find that funny, and it made me cringe a little every time he had a line as a result.

I would probably say Rab is the best party member writing wise. I mean the perverted old man joke was old, but he has a well written introduction and his Act 2 quest is probably the best one out of all the characters.
Spoiler: show
A shame the Luminary shows no emotion with regards to Rab as that sort of hurt the Act 1 scenes a bit.

Like Rab she has an excellent Act 1 introduction. Problem is that unlike Rab she has the worst of the Act 2 quests. Like hers is so bad that it isn't even a contest. It adds nothing to her character, is never brought up again (despite the fact that she should probably have some PTSD from it), and was just poorly thought out from start to finish. Thankfully it is short?

(Act 2 spoilers)
Spoiler: show
So he was alright. His recruitment was fine, but he really doesn't add much post recruitment beyond being there. I know that applies to most of the party, but I don't really have much else to say about him beyond he was there since he only gets his recruitment quest (while most others get two recruitment quests).

So yeah, I think that gets the majority of my thoughts on this game off my chest. I probably could do a lot of additional nitpicking (Act 3 spoiler)
Spoiler: show
Like pointing out how weird it is that the first person that realized they could resurrect Veronica was Hendrick despite her being dead before he changed sides.
But I think I covered most of the major issues I had. Again, overall, the game was fine, just nowhere near the perfect masterpiece that people are painting it as.

General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: July 29, 2018, 07:07:20 AM »
It is weird what sorts of fad diets people will come up with. I can't help but imagine that this is going to end up with a lot of people getting long term negative health impacts. <-Spoken by a person who hasn't eaten a vegetable that counts in over two decades

It's kinda like how ninjas as we know them (with their full black outfits and hoods/masks) are a perpetuation of multimedia, namely old movies.  Actual ninjas in feudal Japan never dressed in black pajamas.  The key to stealth is in not being *noticed* which is different from not being *seen.*  So true ninjas basically hid in plain sight dressed up like everybody else.  But that wouldn't look cool in the movies, now would it?
Actually if I'm not mistaken, the full black outfit actually originates from an old style of Japanese theater (Kabuki maybe?) where the people who handled the props and background stuff wore all black in order to not stand out while the actors on stage were acting. Eventually the tradition became that ninjas depicted in that theater style would be dressed in all black to imply that they were seen as part of the background to the other actors. Over time that likely influences the perception of ninja in the Japanese public culture until they eventually made the transition to film where the look became synonymous across the world.

General Games / Re: Fire Emblem Heroes
« on: July 27, 2018, 06:31:35 AM »
What's really dumb is the unpredictability of the mode. Will the next six hours have a non 1x multiplier? And if so, will it be of a color you haven't maxed yet? And if so, will each battle yield more than 1 chest per run (I'm fucking surprised they didn't make it possible to get chestless battles)? And if so, will said battle have more than 3 enemies to fight (not that I think you get 4 chests in a five man battle, but it seems like its impossible to get a battle where every enemy drops a chest I stand corrected, as I've just had a 3 man battle drop 3 chests, but 3 still seems like the max number of chests per battle)?

At least its an okay way to grind in between (T_Ts), especially for HM since the only requirement is making sure to have the proper accessory equipped (though its good to have a team that can autobattle the maps that come up).
Pretty sure the colors change every hour even when the multiplier doesn't. Also fairly certain I've had chestless battles. >.> I recall having a battle with a ridiculous amounts of points once that might have been because of 4 chests, but I'll admit I wasn't paying attention during the battle.

I do hate the RNG though. I currently have around a 1k gap between my highest character and my lowest character. And of course my highest affection is with Libra, the character I like the least out of this group. >.>

So I got the platinum on this game yesterday. My overall thoughts? Game was enjoyable but has more than a couple of really stupid design decisions that game developers were supposed to know better than by the PS3 era (e.g., non-active party members not getting exp). It was enjoyable overall, but I will probably forget I have played the game at all in a week or two as it was not particularly memorable (for good or bad reasons).

General Games / Re: Fire Emblem Heroes
« on: June 29, 2018, 06:36:00 AM »
*spends 160 orbs and gets 2 LHectors, 3 Myrrhs, and 1 BIke* Eh a decent haul, although I did not get any optimal Boons. >.>

If Tales of Vesperia is indeed being re-released for the Playstation 4, I will be one very, very happy MonCapitan2002.

Congrats on becoming a very, very happy MonCapitan2002!
Not so fast.  We don't know if the PS 4 version will be released in the West.  I heard that Microsoft funded the localization of Tales of Vesperia.  If that is the case, we might only see the XBox One and PC version on our shores.  I am not yet happy.
No we know there are PS4 and Switch versions. I have one on preorder already.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Will any trails games be on NA ps4?
« on: April 26, 2018, 06:49:31 AM »
Isn't Trails of Cold Steel 3 confirmed for PS4 in NA?

To my knowledge, not yet. We know Falcom wants to bring it and other Trails games over, but a localization has not been formally announced.
And if we are lucky, the lack of any announcement means that XSeed has the license since they tend to not announce localiztions till they are close to being finished.

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