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334755 Posts in 13709 Topics by 2200 Members
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16  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Maxx plays FFXIII - based on a true story [SPOILERS!] on: October 21, 2014, 01:17:28 PM
Despite the melodrama, he's pretty much correct. You go from getting strung along down a narrow corridor to plot point after plot point until you reach the vaunted Gran Pulse, at which point you're getting strung along all over hell and gone to go on a sequence of sidequests (always consisting of "defeat enemy X") strictly for the purposes of level grinding. You're quite literally going through a training montage for chapters 10, 11 and half of 12, and worse still is that this comes at the very point in the plot where things had just gone from pedestrian to crazy stupid which further makes the arc worse since you kinda want to see how that stupidity is going to resolve itself but you can't because you're stuck on Planet Namek grinding on slugs and flowers because everything else will kill you instantly/horribly until you gain enough levels under your belt where only mostly everything will kill you instantly/horribly (and among the things that won't anymore are the massive sacks of HP robot enemies that exist solely to roadblock you out of picking up the plot until you've ground up to a level where you can slowly manage take them down). The only optional thing you can actually do during this point is getting the Growth Egg which requires going all the way up to the point where you'll begin Chapter 12, then double back to the main areas of Chapter 11 to trick a sidequest statue into letting you attempt the Growth Egg quest early (it should in theory make the endgame less of a slog, but it essentially requires a slog to get the option).

The tl;dr is that even in the Land Down Under, you're still getting strung along, just that, instead of walls and corridors, you have gorges and hot death boxing you in.
17  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: i hope we get this too(WA5) on: October 21, 2014, 01:46:18 AM
Agreed, she's a great character. Very interesting and balances out the rest of the cast.

(That being said, I don't think the amount of a clothing character has necessarily makes them a better or worse character.)

I agree the amount of clothes don't matter, but I'd by lying if I said I wasn't surprised she was as covered up as she was since it could have gone just as easily (and often) gone the other way.  All in all though her entire ensemble (full long sleeves + trench + long dress) and character felt pretty out of the ordinary, from the colours to her "tries to be cute" hair style to her surprisingly combination of being both humble and a badass at the same time.

The rub?  She's probably the only standout amongst the WA4 cast (at least from what I can remember).

I think that's something that just made me hate WA5's Dean even more was that WA4's Jude already sort of had the same idea of a young boy, with a strong conviction, yammering on about how he'll save everything.  It also made me appreciate WA3's more balanced act a bit better.  Virginia was also that sort of idealist, but unlike Dean (and maybe Jude but my memory is fuzzy), they allowed her to be more vulnerable and occasionally sympathetic but still keep the ham and "do good" attitude... especially since sometimes she was "dragged back down" by her more realistic (Clive), grounded (Gallows), or more negative (Jet) co-stars.  Dean was just an idiot with a sense of right and a strong sense of dumb.

Actually, I don't recall a single Wild Arms female resorting to chainmail bikinis or the like unless they were evil or something (except Rebbecca, but *insert dissatisfaction with WA5 here*).
18  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dice plays FF7 (Sponsored by Maxx) on: October 21, 2014, 01:39:14 AM
Mt. Nible isn't just a good place for level ups but for great armor for where you are with Gold Bangles. Those Dragons just sweat them.

And yeah, Raw-kit Lawn-chair Town is pretty largely forgettable outside of Cid/Shera and Palmer's death (and that one sidequest of Huge Materia). At least Palmer died as he lived. Like a complete dipshit.

Aerith's Limit Breaks are fantastic trolls. Not only are they gamebreakingly powerful to the point of making virtually every other gamebreaking thing in the game look only reasonably powered (and this is FF fucking VII, only FFVIII has less existent challenge than this (and maybe FFVI if you don't count Ruby/Emerald WEAPONs), but you will almost never use them due to the conventional rate at which you unlock Limit Breaks taking far too long (hell Cloud won't be ready for his level 4 until the second disk without grinding for it; and he has a far far easier time scoring kills and having opportunities to use his Limits due to his near perfect availability; whereas Eris is pretty wimpy Strength-wise and practically made of glass before saddling herself down with Materia which gives her the consistency of wet paper maché). I've used Great Gospel exactly once in my entire life, and I'm never going through the effort of doing it again.

As for what Limit Breaks I use once I get access to the Level 4 stuff? I'll admit, that I tend to use Cross Slash or Finishing Touch over the others, but that's mostly due to either his Limit's stupid gimmicks, ridiculous CTs that not even Short Charge can help with, or the fact that his Limits aren't really powerful enough to compensate for saddling him with that lousy Materia Blade (and that's even assuming I ever bother going through all the hoops of using him in the first place). Otherwise, why not use Level 4 stuff? Thanks to the damage cap and the fact that almost every Limit Break in the game consists of hitting things harder than normal, there's almost never a point of going back once your normal attacks start coming up on the damage cap themselves.

The thing about the Tiny Bronco is the same with almost every other newly acquired mode of transportation in an FF game. You get to futz around for a bit until you realize there's exactly two places that you can reach with your sweet new ride that you couldn't before. Then it becomes a simple matter of process of elimination.

Wutari, similar to Mt. Nible above, is also loaded with phat loot. Namely Turbo Ethers which make your MP problems fall off a cliff forever. Too bad your first visit is going to be the only point in the entire game where you can't actually use magic. Hope you saved all those attack items you never ever needed to use or know what they even do? (of course you fucking do, outside of this one particular sidequest the only items you'll ever use is the occasional Phoenix Down (until you get the Life Materia) or Turbo Ether.

So why didn't you get the Parasol? I think the Princess Guard has some sort of special effect like all the other 'ultimate' weapons have but even if it does, it doesn't even matter since Doom Wall is the last thing you can really use it for (other than Throw fodder; but again, why would you even consider using up items outside of Wutari?).

That's correct. This is the point where Aeris actually starts to become relevant to the on-going plot (she's more like justification for the 'storming the castle'/'escape from Shinra Mountain' half of the Midgar arc), and remains so for pretty much the rest of the game (in spite of her noticeable lack of attendance). In fact, you don't even really get the full monty on her backstory until after she kicks the bucket, let alone what she sets into motion with her death.

Off course! This game are sick.

Funny thing about that. There's more than hieroglyphs that's intended to invoke an analogue between FFVII's world and Earth. The whole war bit between Wutari and Midgar feels suspiciously like a dispute between two countries separated by a massive body of water, one of which is very Japanese-like and one is very Western-like. In fact, there are quite a few areas that are seemingly analogous to the real world like a Canyon dwelling Native American tribe, a Casino in a desert, a town located in a village high up in a mountain range suspiciously similar to the Alps, one that's terrorized by human made monsters even and so on.

Enemy Skill is indeed overpowered, early on. As you go on, your magic will catch up to Enemy Skill's elemental spells but the concentrated utility that Enemy Skill can bring is unmatched until Master Materia show up. The biggest problem really is actually finding and learning those E.Skills which either takes Manipulate/Control or a shitload of levels/elemental protection to survive the spell you want to learn. That said, Big Guard in this game is only actually good for the Haste 2 effect since Barrier and M. Barrier are way too short lived (made worse by Haste) to even make a difference, its actually one of the worse incarnations of Mighty Guard in the series (at least its not locked to any one character like it normally is).

The only reason I can see why you aren't liberally using your two latest Summon Materias is because you want to trivialize the game in new and interesting ways (and not want to take forever for each casting's animation to resolve). Seriously, Magic Materia outside of Heal and Life are kinda irrelevant thanks to Summons of the appropriate element, and their only downside (outside of the real world time investment) are the even larger statistical hit to your character's physical stats, and they get a subsequent boost to their magical stats instead.

You can also say the same thing about "Rufus's death". Seriously Advent Children pays so little attention to this game, it feels more like some really goofy and high budget attempt at being a DBZ clone than anything else.

Barret's the best choice, especially if you're willing to bomb the play, but if you're grinding Arnis's Limit Breaks up she'll probably be unavoidable unless you're willing to put off the grind until right before the Temple of the Ancients or turn her into your Summon bot and stick her and her alone into the front row with Cover equipped and only have Barret or Red XIII chuck Phoenix Downs and Hypers her way.
19  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: October 21, 2014, 12:00:58 AM
FFXII had a story it wanted to tell, but the scope of the game's development and Squeenix's development practices blasted that game from pretty much every direction.

At least it had that over FFXIII which spent all its time writing its prologue and basically gave us a minor character arc and three different variants on how the story ends (which FFXIII-2 basically came along and said that none of them mattered anyways because the story ain't over yet).

Man I get it if they intentionally dubbed it in British English to make it all sound... I don't know, Britishy for the hell of it like they did with the Dragon Quest games as of late, but complaining about everyone having a British accent in a dub released primarily for UK distribution is like complaining about how everyone's speaking in Japanese in a Japanese dub.

I've said it around here before, but one of the reasons I stopped playing was because of the annoyingly repetitive battle voices. They drove me nuts! A game should always give you the option to turn them off. Always.

The problem with this is that the voice clips are pretty much your best indicator as to what your party members are doing and is essential in setting up some of the more complicated Arts Combos available like the Break > Topple > Daze > Face Wrecker combo.

That said, the biggest problem with Xenoblade's pacing is that the more interesting characters are backloaded in the recruitment order. Shulk is a weird technical, situational, support type character who has the potential to dish some serious heat but can't really take it unless he's throwing out Monado buffs which precludes him from whipping out Buster (and not helping matters is that he's stuck with a two Gem Slot weapon for half of the game, so you can't really set up a good Gem combo for him and significantly limits his potential until then), and Reyn and Sharla are the Bruiser/Tank and Staffbot of the game, i.e. the JRPG equivalent to bread and butter. Dunban's the first guy who actually plays interestingly without being too convoluted or better left to the AI and the rest are even better still.

Also seriously, hold off on the sidequests until you feel like you could use a boost without going out of your way to grind. Most of them will last forever and only a select few give really good rewards, and they'll raise your level through gobs of EXP but don't give out AP and SP which are awarded based on your level (they also give out Gold which only really matters in getting Arts Manuals and Colony 6 improvements; loot like weapons, armor, gems and other items but most of it winds up as vendor trash; and relationship points between the party and the region and the party leader and a member of the active party which is good to save until later to help raise party relationships which is extremely difficult to raise without resorting to cheesing methods).
20  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Random and Amazing Pictures, Please! on: October 20, 2014, 04:10:23 PM
This pictures makes me deeply uncomfortable does it make you deeply uncomfortable?

Only if I'm looking at the many clones of Dolly the Sheep. Otherwise all I see is a bunch of Lambchops and Sweaters on legs.
21  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Super Smash Bros. Namdai on: October 20, 2014, 12:11:34 AM
Probably because you could easily zoom in enough in Melee to gaze upon Peach's Mushroom Kingdom or Zelda's Family Treasure. Also because the sheer number of trophies have increased as the series goes on (and other series go on, further increasing the number of games and characters/items/locations/whatever to cover), as well as the possibility for errors (like Daisy's third eye) or stuff they don't want to have to guess at or render in case someone decides to get curious and tries to look (like the buttons down Zelda's shirt of her OoT costume).

Also, that character prediction list is fake. There's no Goku or Ridley, and in a magazine? Really!? Come on!
22  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: A Mana series retrospective. on: October 19, 2014, 11:03:00 PM
I lucked out and strongarmed my siblings into playing SoM's multi player. It actually works quite well when you're not trying to sabotage each other. In fact that's really where the importance lies in; the game is perfectly playable in both single player and multi player without feeling like you had to have at least a second player. You weren't getting shortchanged on a half-baked multi player mode, you weren't forced to find some friends to do anything in the game and all you needed to get a player on board was an extra controller and a multi-tap device (which were pretty goddamn reasonable back in the day, even if the multi-tap didn't see much use outside of it and Bomberman). There are lots of multi player games nowadays that aren't playable because the AI is too useless and the game's interface is too cumbersome to get around the AI with or everything's in single player and the multi player was just some last minute novelty to add one more bullet point to the back of the box/gaming magazine/online review.
23  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: October 19, 2014, 02:34:39 PM
Fate/Stay was basically an exposition episode this week... Boo.  Also, form last week, why do people like Sakura?  She seems like a normal Japanese "Meri Su".  Also, for how lovely everything look, the wedge faces are driving me nuts.

From what I've heard over the years, it probably has something to do with the third arc (especially since its mostly about her and the crap she ends up going through).
24  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: October 19, 2014, 12:53:23 PM
The thing about Valek Mountain is that its pretty much where the post game stuff concludes so of course its got level 99-ish enemies all up in its business. That said, the music could've been better (unfortunately due to being totally Ice Level music). Also, as annoying as it is to actually get around that region, it does have a few things working for/against it, namely that Bobsled Chute with the huge fuck off jump at the end and that one little trail that goes right over the goddamn spine of the level's central mountain (its pretty much the game's best example of its 'go anywhere' nature even if its also the best case the game can make for 'save anywhere' style save points).

Also, I wound up getting some drops from some enemy (those little bird guys near that shrine) that is somehow quest important, but I never found the quest that it goes to.
25  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: A Mana series retrospective. on: October 19, 2014, 12:36:28 PM
I had a huge effort post to shore up some of the info the OP just posted, but then my browser crashed so I'm just going to point out that while FFA's combat is probably the best in the series, I still prefer Secret's not-Zelda 1's dungeon design over FFA's.

Also Sword is pretty much the best example of why designing a game based entirely around elements that you liked from other games is not such a good idea.

Also also, is that Legend is, for all intents and purposes, a SaGa style side-scrolling beat'em up covered in Mana trappings.

Also also also, is that the Mana timeline is almost as fucked up as the Zelda timeline is.
26  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Super Smash Bros. Namdai on: October 17, 2014, 08:32:01 PM
And yet still no FE 4 or 5 reppage outside of maybe a *nudge* *wink* pallet for Marth (I mean, even FE 2, the black sheep of the series is referenced through a music track).

But getting back to that image, it makes me wonder if they'll have trophies for Fatal Frames 4 and 5 as well (and more for Xenoblade beyond two for Shulk and one for Riki & Dunban)?
27  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dice plays FF7 (Sponsored by Maxx) on: October 17, 2014, 01:55:57 AM
I felt that the greatest source of pathos in the game was the Cid and Shera scenario where she aborted the launch due to a faulty tank and Cid held a grudge against her for a long time for killing his dream.  I thought Shera's story was the saddest in the game.  For her to endure the abuse from Cid for so long, that's a tragic plight; especially knowing that she saved his life and he won't believe that.  Poor Shera. 

Cid/Shera's story is amazing, he's my favorite Cid in the series; I didn't fully appreciate him and Shera until replays.  He's just such a broken man, with broken dreams, whose hope was shattered by Shinra in a way very similar to Barret's and Shera is a broken woman filled with regret who beats herself more than Cid ever can.

Also, he has an amazing character theme remix.  Very western.
(Have I mentioned FFVII has great music? Because it has a lot of great music).

He's also got the goofiest running animation in the series, and gains the coveted position of party leader which no Cid before or since can claim.

Still like FFIV's Cid doing everything he can to get himself killed off and only managing to get himself sick with the flu, but VII's Cid is definitely in the Top 3.
28  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: A Shout-out to coop multiplayer gaming on: October 16, 2014, 05:31:20 AM
Secret of Mana? :v

Also, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles (the original, not so sure about the others).

Even when the game was released I thought it was a lot to ask to have both a GC and GBA's ready (did it have non-handheld co-op?? I can't remember).

I always loved this commercial for it....FA-YAH!!!

OMG, I totally forgot about Crystal Chronicles. Man I wanted to play that game, but had no one to play it with, and agreed that needing the GBA to serve as a controller was terrible, though I have to wonder if it wasn't from the GBA working as a controller for the GC that gave Nintendo the idea of the DS.

Along that vein, Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures for GC comes to mind. I begged and pleaded and finally found a friend to play it with. It was really fun minus the fact that you will need GBAs to play multiplayer for it similarly to FF:CC. I still never could figure out why you could play single-player with the GC controller, but had to have GBAs for multiplayer.

The problem with Four Swords Adventure is that, much like the various Mario Party/Kart games over the years, its amazingly cutthroat. Nintendo seems to have cornered the market on friendship destroying games.

(And you know that I would never have recommended FF:CC without LoZ:FSA without good reason, and "Did not fit the OP's request" is among the good reasons (the other being the lack of a third, let alone fourth, player).)
29  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dice plays FF7 (Sponsored by Maxx) on: October 16, 2014, 12:48:50 AM
Or come with maxed level 4 Limit Breaks 4x Cuts for everybody.
30  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: A Shout-out to coop multiplayer gaming on: October 15, 2014, 09:19:15 PM
Secret of Mana? :v

Also, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles (the original, not so sure about the others).
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