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Subject: 999 (Nintendo DS)
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4081  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: "No plans" for new Saga or Mana games on: June 25, 2011, 10:44:19 PM
I never played Heroes or Dawn of Mana but the soundtrack for Heroes was amazing since Shimomura returned.  Not as epic as the Legend of Mana but it was still very good.  The only Mana games I own are: Secret of Mana, Legend of Mana, Sword of Mana and Children of Mana.  Secret is my favorite of the bunch I own but something about Legend just makes me happy.  I always have to play it during the Summer.  The mixture of the music, graphics, characters, environment.  The story was all over the place I guess since it was basically a mission based game but granted the game is just beautiful to look at and still is.  One of the best looking PS1 games, up there with Vagrant Story and Final Fantasy Tactics.

That's the thing about the Mana series. More often than not, it has very beautiful art and music. Games like Legend and hell even Dawn still look good even today, but when you strip all that away you're left with a very mediocre side scrolling brawler and an awful juggling grindfest respectfully. Children so far has been the one big outlier as it's artwork is fully concentrated on the title screen, the one screen large designated 'town', and the characters. Everything else is your typical, by the numbers, dungeon crawler, down to the boring reused title sets.

Heroes, as you said, had great music and good art for an RTS. But there's the rub, an RTS. An RTS from Japan. In the nearly three decades that they've been making video games, Japan has only developed 3 RTSes during this entire time. And they're ALL based off of Heroes of Mana's shitty engine. (Of course, I'm not counting the RTSes produced under Squeenix since as they're all developed from western companies that they've absorbed in a vain effort to appeal to western gaming audiences without actually having to do the work themselves.)
4082  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: June 25, 2011, 12:12:00 PM
You bring up a good point Eusis. Read the manga first, then go watch whatever. Even Brotherhood ended up cutting things to make it to the episode deadline or because of how anime works compared to manga (I'm mostly referring to the first major throwdown as a solid third of it got cut (also because you can't really do ominous/mysterious voices coming from the shadows in an anime without giving away the mystery so they skipped the entire scenario that led to that particular scene despite making some other parts not make as much sense (and making one character look almost completely incompetent until a later point where there apparently was some unexplained level of badass taken at some point))). I'm also recommending the manga first for when you get to some of the later HOLY SHIT!!! moments of the series, you have the option of going back and rereading it to make sure you just saw what you think you just saw.

That said, they're all good for one reason or another. If you want the early parts brought to life and a wrist slitting/grimdark ending, the original has you covered. If you want to breeze through the beginning and see the events from the manga in fully animated and voice acted glory, then Brotherhood is the show of choice. If you want to see the full series, uncut, and with a slightly different ending, go with the manga. If you want to waste your time to see some of the popular surviving characters of the original FMA get thoroughly shat upon, watch the movie (or actually, don't as its awful).
4083  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: "No plans" for new Saga or Mana games on: June 24, 2011, 11:31:58 AM
And then in Dawn of Mana everything was just shit.

Heroes of Mana, being Japan's first RTS, was also shit. Squeenix, of course, went and reused it's same 'Don't cross the streams pathfinding' engine for both Reverent Wings and Blue Dragon +, resulting in of course, more shit.

Seriously, that whole World of Mana compilation was full of uninspired or gimmicky bullshit.

Also, Sword of Mana went and remade FFA into a bloated, shitty, grindfest that went against the very nature of it's own platform (a handheld RPG without even a quicksave feature) all while watering down FFA's plot into 'Power of Friendship' anime bullshit.
4084  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The NEW Game Journal on: June 24, 2011, 10:04:22 AM
Yup, you're about to get to the worst moment of the game.

I'm guessing it's either "DAMMIT DAMMIT DAMMIT" or the big bad finally reveals himself.

Oh well, still better than "WELCOME TO 4D" of SO3.
4085  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: June 24, 2011, 09:26:07 AM
Sorry, but when it comes to anime, I finish what I start (eventually).

Oh, I'm not saying that you should quit. Just take a time out at around that point to watch the vastly superior version then you can go back to watching The Archinator and ridiculously forced love triangles.

Oh yeah, that was funny how in the original serie they went past the manga and completely made up a cardboard villain and ended the serie in a spiral of shit.
Wait, that's not funny, that's sad =/

Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai ended exactly how it should; a giant tear jerker episode.

I'll agree with that. It was a tearjerker to see Winrey still be completely irrelevant, and Edward not ending up with his OTP Alphonse.
4086  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: June 23, 2011, 08:36:49 PM
I honestly disagree with pretty much everything you said except for the lack of character development of the main character part.

Heh, that's cool, bit interested in hearing your thoughts behind it that's all. I'm a pretty big Gundam nerd.

Honestly, just take the exact opposite of pretty much everything you had said, and you'd have my thoughts on the matter, minus the two noted exceptions (Main character and SEED's mecha).

Anyways, I ended up going with Eureka Seven, but then my internet went out, so I watched FullMatal Alchemist and Gundam X until the cable guy came and got us a new modem. Now that we have internet, I feel like watching Escaflowne.


Eureka Seven is slooooow. But good. The world is very unique and the characters are great - they're all quirky and never quite cliche. It's very character focused for a Mecha anime, which in this case works.

FullMetal Alchemist is really good so far. It's very episodic so far, and each little story hits just the right notes, so to speak. It's got just the right mix of comedy and sorrow, action and intrigue - no one aspect overpowers the other. The characters and voice acting are also great, but that goes without saying.

Gundam X has really hit the spot, especially with the Fort Seven arc. It seems to have more of a Love/adventure story feel to it, and it really works for me. I especially love the post-apocalyptic setting, it really makes for an interesting world. The only think I don't like are the mech designs. They aren't bad, but they come off as weird versions of mobile suits from other series. They're still not as bad as the bug 'suits from Victory Gundam or those monstrocities in Turn A Gundam, and I'm getting used to them, but I can't say I like them.

I'll edit in my impressions of Escaflowne later.

Which version of FMA are you watching, the original or Brotherhood? If you're watching the original stop at episode 26 and go pick up Brotherhood at about (I want to say 19 but try for a bit earlier just to be on the safe side, probably 14 or 16). If you're watching Brotherhood, then I'd recommend reading the manga once you are done. Don't bother with the original unless you want to see some of the early storylines animated.

Trust me on this.

(Also, for the love of god, DON'T WATCH THE MOVIE!!!)

Ninja Edit: Watch episode 2 of Brotherhood then skip to 14 or 16.
4087  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: "No plans" for new Saga or Mana games on: June 23, 2011, 08:26:23 PM
^Not exactly likely to ever get a new Drakengard or Nier given how Cavia was sucked up into AQ Interactive which has since been bought out by Marvelous Entertainment. God only knows where Yoko Taro is and what horrible things he's planning to do the children characters of his next game.

And in all the Mana complaining, have people forgotten Children of Mana?  Of course, because that game was mediocre at best.  I compared it to a pretty girl with a sexy voice but a vapid personality.  Fun for a couple of days, then I got bored. 

I'm pretty sure that, at one time in the distant past, I've peg CoM squarely between Summon Night: Twin Age and From the Abyss in terms of mediocre dungeon crawlers on the DS. Has a better gimmick than FtA's sole gimmick (or anything for that matter) skill stealing (compared to Children's Pinball of Mana) but doesn't even compare to SNTA's multiple PC characters, more balance gameplay, and general ascetics.
4088  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: "No plans" for new Saga or Mana games on: June 22, 2011, 08:31:57 PM
Losing SaGa is disappointing. Unlimited soured the well and The Last Remnant could've been decent if it had only come out on the PC instead of leading off with that shitty 360 port.

Mana, however, hasn't had it's creator at the helm since Secret and since then the series has been going steadily downhill. SD3 was a decent copy of the formula, improved in some ways but messed up others. Legend was a very beautiful and very simplistic side-scrolling brawler with way too much emphasis on exploration for a game not designed for it, and also an OCD nerd's wet dream/nightmare in that forging/tempering bullshit. Sword was a remake that retconned it's source material into a pale shadow of its former self as well as bogging the game down into a massive grindfest with arbitrary game mechanics tacked on in the worst possible ways at every turn. And the entirety of the World compilation was filled with either shoddy generic crap or poorly conceived gimmicks wrapped up in a game. Also pretty much everyone of talent from the start of the series has long since been scattered to the ends of the video game industry.

The only reason why Dragon Quest is still around is that Horii and Toriyama are still on board. It's ridiculous how the series itself is so conservative that its managed to loop around into being fairly liberal by SE's standards.
4089  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: super robot wars original generations 2 for ps3 on: June 21, 2011, 09:16:18 AM
you made a typo you meant to say R not D. also the anime is not cannon. the game follows the events of OGS version of OG2 and OGG. most of OG2 gba is still relevant however in OGS OG2 lee did not die. expect him to be in the not titans. aka GS.

I don't know about that. 2:12 and 2:39 in that trailer seems to suggest otherwise.

As for Lee, I did not know that. I was aware that there were changes made to some of the plot and characters to accommodate the new characters as well as to improve some of the battles and events from OG1 & 2 like Wodan helping out with the Machine Children after getting his shit kicked in by Sanger.
4090  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: super robot wars original generations 2 for ps3 on: June 20, 2011, 07:32:42 PM
That's what I meant by them covering SRW A. If you look closely enough you'll see not only the Angelg but also the Soulgain. Those are the two primary mechs of the original protagonists of SRW A, Lamia Loveless and Axel Almer. The plot of A had Axel lose his memory before the events of the game, hence his protag status in A, OGSaga EF Exceed, and now most likely this game OGs2.

Although if I'm remembering A correctly, they've already covered those events in OG2, so they may just be there as part of OGs2's contributions to the plot instead.
4091  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: super robot wars original generations 2 for ps3 on: June 20, 2011, 07:29:57 AM
Look nice but they added a bunch of character that I never heard of.  BTW, are they going to model it after the game or the anime?  Cuz the anime, while nice,  was missing several key note from the game like drilling a certain hateful bastard to death. 

Yeah, that kinda happens when drawing from the depths of a 20 year old series that's seen dozens of games across a dozen systems that, with but three exceptions, has never seen the light of day outside of Japan. Also this game is the continuation of the OG series, not a rehash (i.e. Lee already took that drill to the face). The only old ground that's being covered are the OG plots from @2, A, D, and a bunch of other stuffs, while also adding a bit of content on it's own (Katrina and Russel getting their own specialized Gespies for instance (and Kai gets a new one too aside from the Gespy-S)).
4092  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The New E3 Awards Threadô on: June 20, 2011, 06:54:25 AM
Nintendo led off with that whole Zelda tribute.

After that it was hearing that we're getting DQMJ2.

Basically E3 was hearing Nintendo say that Zelda's 25 now. From here on it's a race between her and her boobs to see which sags to the ground first.
4093  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: super robot wars original generations 2 for ps3 on: June 17, 2011, 02:42:40 AM
Bamp for Great Justice! and a new trailer....http://www.siliconera.com/2011/06/16/as-promised-we-have-a-trailer-for-the-2nd-super-robot-taisen-og/
4094  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The NEW Game Journal on: June 17, 2011, 02:28:50 AM
In VP2, you basically need to follow the 10 commandment:
- Thou shall do every side dungeon (talk in town to discover them), lest miss a very important sealstone pouch.
- Thou shall only use archers or heavy warriors with good movesets.
- Thou shall not rely on main characters but instead on einherjar.
- Thou shall put everything on offense for defense serves no purpose.
- Thou shall stack 'slayer' effects.
- Thou shall use the 'dismember' skill.
- Thou shall sealstone to thy advantage.
- Thou shall sealstone woes the thy foes.
- Thou shall never buy a sealstone costier than 10,000 crystals.
- Thou shall forget the rule above if you play an archer group for elemental sealstone exploitation.

Or if you're a maxi-OCD-sperg then only use Story characters, level them all way the fuck up as soon as possible, and never get rid of a single einheriar until the Gate where you can farm the best dropable equipment in the game, then load them up to your einheriar and then send them up for a metric fuckton of statboosters.

It's more that throughout the main story, the story characters play musical chair. I never understood why devs think this is an awesome idea.

True. But if you do it right, by the first or second round of musical companions, you'll be inundated with enough awesome gear that the main character and that guy who looks kinda like a proto Papa Nier can basically solo the rest of the game.

Otherwise yeah, the game was terrible with party members/einheriars since most party members were refugees from Lenneth and the einheriar were mostly just there to fill in your ranks in the meanwhile.

Also terrible with that breaking stuff off of enemies.
4095  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Hey Guys! We got one! (Solatorobo Thread) on: June 17, 2011, 02:07:38 AM
So yeah. Any Tail Concerto fans out there? You may rejoice now.

For the rest of us.... Eh, it could be worse.
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