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Messages - Mym

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Sure! I couldn't find many screens that didn't come from sites with... um... questionable content, but I still had the game installed, so I just took a couple from the first chapter. Here you go:

And yeah, likewise, especially with (presumably easier to work with?) PC ports floating around. They're not exactly the most challenging games from a language perspective, either, outside of a couple of tricky puns and the relatively large amount of text. If nothing else, hopefully N1's work on the series will have pushed it onto the radar of a few fan translation savvy individuals. :)

For me, Panzer Dragoon Saga is #1 (I still have yet to play it and I badly want to), Shantae is definitely one, and Beyond Good & Evil too.

Ooh, good choices! Very fond of all three myself.

And agreed! I'm happy that poor sales or no, Sakura Taisen found a receptive audience in the West. It's a series that for me is very much more than the sum of its parts, with willfully silly stories and average-ish strategy combat somehow gelling into something so irresistibly charming. It's a real shame that the series will probably never see the light of day in English again, but it's cool that N1 were willing to give it a chance even once. I'd probably take a crack at translating the other games myself if I knew anything about the technical side of things. :'D

Don't know if it's been mentioned here already, but interestingly a company called Akella actually localised the PC ports of the first two games into Russian a number of years back. My Russian isn't really good enough to judge how good the translation is, but either way I thought it was kind of cool!

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Next "Trails" game announced for PSP
« on: December 23, 2011, 09:39:22 PM »
And even if you made it through the battles, the meat of the Kiseki games is in the story, setting and character interactions anyway. So yeah, not exactly an ideal choice for import. :'D

Then again, they're actually a tough proposition even if you speak Japanese quite well. I played them the same year I played Xenoblade and Final Fantasy XIII. And though I basically played those two with my dictionaries closed, I was dipping into the books pretty often with Kiseki, especially during the last few chapters of SC. Even when the story is in the realms of fairly simple, adventurous stuff, the writers indulge in vocabulary and kanji that you're more likely to find in the average novel than a videogame. Which is yet another roadblock to localisation being that there's not just page upon page of text to translate, but page upon page of... really quite difficult text.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade
« on: December 23, 2011, 08:25:06 AM »
Wow, thanks for the heads up. :D I really hope it comes back into stock. I already have it in Japanese, but at that kind of price I'll happily buy it again. I was planning on replaying it anyway, and I'd be curious to run through it with the British dub. Maybe I'll put the text in French or something too, so I can call it study and not feel guilty about throwing another hundred odd hours at a game I've already finished.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Next "Trails" game announced for PSP
« on: December 21, 2011, 03:34:25 PM »
Hell, I'd rather have them ignore the third game in the "current" Trails trilogy and move onto Blue.

You should worry more about Trails of Blue.

Don't you mean Zero? Blue's the second one.

If it came down to it, I wouldn't be opposed to them bypassing 3rd myself. It has lots of nice fanservice for those who enjoyed the first two, and you'd be left not really knowing a whole lot about Kevin's character without it, but outside of that it's not really essential. SC ties up almost all of the story introduced in FC, and everything else aside, 3rd simply isn't as good as the two before. Would still be nice for people to have it, mind, but if it meant greater chances of seeing the Zero trilogy in English... That being said, I think there's every likelihood that the entire Zero trilogy will end up ported to Vita like the original trilogy was ported to the PSP. They've already announced a full voice version of Zero for the Vita, after all. So if the trilogy is bypassed for localisation, I don't think it'll be due to the PSP dying.

On the topic of the game: super excited. Both FC and SC are among my favourite games ever, and more Kiseki can only be a good thing! I really need to find more free time, though. I still haven't played either Zero or Ao, and both sit on my shelf giving me sad puppy dog eyes every time I walk by. :/

Single-Player RPGs / Re: the next big Jrpgs on xbox and ps3?
« on: December 16, 2011, 05:31:01 PM »
I disagreed, and while I'm not exactly dead serious about the subject, with a tendency to somewhat inflate the issue beyond its actual scale, there is one thing worth pointing out about your argument:
Most of the "good jRPGs" you named aren't even out yet. That right there is a sign that things aren't looking too hot at the moment, since any one of them may very well turn out to be a dud.

Japanese games do exist before they hit the US. All of the six listed bar Final Fantasy XIII-2 are out in Japan. The Last Story is the only one that has received any real negative response from players, and even then it's more of a love it or hate it thing, and it has its fans. The rest have received feedback that ranges from good (Tales of Graces and Ni no Kuni are both acknowledged to be quality titles with fun gameplay and lots of content) to great (the latter two games in the Arland series are pretty much the most widely-praised games Gust have ever made, and Xenoblade has been described by a number of players both Japanese and European as one of the best JRPGs ever). I guess you can make an argument for different markets having different tastes and things being changed in localisation, but it's a rare game that goes from being almost universally praised in Japan to being shunned as a dud overseas.

I've heard it described as REALLY FUN, but it falters in many areas beyond just being a fun game. It's probably worth buying the question is at what price? Then again given Japanese game prices I guess $50 WOULD sting a lot less.

Yeah, I've heard people say it's lots of fun, but one of my main problems with it was actually just that I found it really boring, and that I often had to force myself to play it. The story, characters and world are ultra-forgettable outside of a couple of cool set-pieces and one fun gag character, and the gameplay, while potentially interesting, is crippled by pathetically bad enemy AI and a difficulty level so low that it never really demands that you do anything besides mash attack. It's a shame because there are so many cool bells and whistles in its battle system, and I felt like I was missing out on so much by just mashing attack. But at the same time... like... if button mashing is actually more effective and the game's difficulty doesn't reward you for taking advantage of such things, why bother?

And yeah, suffice to say that wasn't the best decision I ever made. :'D It's not the worst game I've ever bought, but it's a contender for the worst I've bought at full price. I'd sell it on if I didn't sort of have a thing about selling on games. At least I got a pretty artbook and a premium soundtrack, I guess! I agree, in any case: it's worth a go because it does some quite interesting things with the JRPG formula, and I could see some people really liking it. Just... be careful about spending too much and regretting it later.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: the next big Jrpgs on xbox and ps3?
« on: December 16, 2011, 12:03:58 PM »
it's entirely possibly that Ni No Kuni is dull and boring

Twenty-five hours in just now, and so far I'd say it's not. It's not the best game I've ever played, but it does a lot of things right and very few things wrong, and it definitely has some substance to match its shiny exterior.

That being said, your point does stand because it's not completely traditional either. While the plot, characters and setting are so classic SNES RPG that it basically just feels like a classic Dragon Quest game with Ghibli-styled characters and aesthetics, the battle system is mostly real-time, and often feels more like Kingdom Hearts with cutaway battle scenes than Dragon Quest or Final Fantasy. Also, while your characters do feature in the battles themselves, more often than not you wind up fighting with your monsters. And while I hate the idea that anything with monster breeding must invariably be compared to Pokemon, there's also quite a heavy emphasis on training / evolving / catching said monsters, so... :'D Yeah, there is a bit of Pokemon mixed in there. Basically it's not really the throwback to the turn-based JRPGs of old that people want it to be in anything but plot.

Oh, and somebody mentioned The Last Story as a high quality title. Do exercise caution there - it starts strong, but I bought it at full price and ended up really, really regretting it. :/ I won't say it's out and out bad, as it does have some interesting ideas, but... well... were it not quite pretty, by the creator of Final Fantasy and given a big push by Nintendo, it's the sort of game that would be pretty quickly forgotten. Put it that way.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
« on: December 08, 2011, 11:31:17 PM »
I already hate celebrity endorsements, but this takes the cake.

Agreed. So agreed. D: Well... except the part about it taking the cake. There was no cake left to take after some of the UK Nintendo ads. My life was never the same after seeing Cheryl Cole pretending to be interested in videogames. :/ Not going to join the Wii hating squad any time soon, as I think it actually has lots of nice games and I'm glad I bought mine, but Nintendo's recent advertising is so obnoxious that it even makes Apple's look appealing.

Thanks for the heads up on the bug, Aeolus! About to start the game, and while it sounds like you have to do quite a specific sequence of events to trigger it, it's better to be safe than sorry.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Tales of PlayStation(s) revealed
« on: December 02, 2011, 06:54:18 PM »
Oh don't get me wrong, I'm certainly not arguing that it's over-hyped. I roll my eyes every time I see somebody throwing the "beta" argument around, being that the 360 version is still a complete, polished, wholly enjoyable game. Still, I do think it's more than a little unreasonable to compare it to really bad examples like SotN and ToS, where some half-assed extra content was hastily pasted in to cover up a sloppy port job. Vesperia is very competently ported, and if I didn't know better I would have thought it was developed for the PS3. And the extras... Well, maybe not all of them are essential. But there are lots of them, all are welcome, and a number of them (full voices, fully playable Flynn complete with new skits and story material, a number of the battle tweaks) are fairly substantial additions that do enhance the game a fair bit. Resident Evil 4 is perhaps a better example, though even then I'd argue that the technical differences between the two Vesperias are far less significant than between the two Resis.

Also, I wasn't a fan of Patty either. :'D But characters like that rarely appeal to me anyway. Besides, a big draw of the series is its battle system, and I don't think an extra playable character with a complete and unique skill set is anything to sneer at, irrespective of whether or not she's the most likeable member of the cast.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade
« on: December 02, 2011, 06:28:42 PM »
I remember the dual audio pushed it from a single layer DVD to a dual layer, and quite a few people were complaining about disc read errors as a result. A reason to scrap it, perhaps? On that note, I still can't believe that Xenosaga Episode 1, a game with hardly forty hours of content, is about double the size of Xenoblade, perhaps the biggest JRPG in history. The benefits of modern technology, I guess? And of using engine-driven cutscenes, as opposed to giant, space-gobbling movie files.

In any case, I'm really happy, if somewhat surprised, to see Xenoblade finally making its way to the US! It's easily one of my favourite games of recent years, and I hope those who haven't already played it enjoy it as much as I did.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Tales of PlayStation(s) revealed
« on: December 02, 2011, 06:03:54 PM »
I'm quite surprised to see people being so dismissive of Vesperia PS3. I actually thought it was a pretty big enhancement, myself. Two extra fully playable characters, full voices for the entire script, extra costumes, extra skills, extra scenes, extra skits, extra music, extra bosses, extra areas... Short of actually revamping significant chunks of the game, I don't really see what other bonuses they could have added.

Of course it's kind of overdramatic to suggest that the 360 version is crippled and worthless thanks to the additions that the PS3 has, but they're not exactly insignificant either, and I think it's a real stretch to compare Vesperia PS3 to SotN Saturn or ToS PS2. SotN's extra areas were practically unfinished, and ToS was such a technical mess compared to its Gamecube counterpart that whatever small additions it brought to the table did little to change the fact that it was pretty objectively the inferior version of the game. Vesperia, on the other hand, adds some fairly substantial extra content at the cost of very little noticeable technical performance. Enough to justify calling the 360 version a beta? Not really. But certainly enough that, were both games available and comprehensible to someone who owned both consoles, I'd see little reason to recommend the 360 one.

Anyway, I'm kind of relieved now that I didn't buy Xillia last month after all. Though it's sort of sad that it's getting to the point with some companies where you stand to lose rather than gain by being an early adopter of a game. Especially in the age of DLC and patches, when there's rarely a need to do a full re-release. Fingers crossed that they opt for DLC for the sake of those who bought it on release.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Ninokuni (Ghibli + Level 5 RPG) going PS3
« on: November 26, 2011, 11:17:08 AM »
some of it was too dull for too long ... watching her train ride

Wah, really? I agree Spirited Away had a little too much fat around the edges, and it's not my favourite Ghibli movie, but that was absolutely my favourite scene in the movie, and one of my favourites in cinema in general. Different strokes for different folks, I suppose!

Anyway, waiting on my copy of Ni no Kuni as I write this. I hope it delivers, as I only had enough money to buy one expensive JRPG over Christmas, and decided to take a chance on it ahead of Final Fantasy XIII-2, Tales of Xillia, Atelier Meruru and a number of others I've had my eye on for a while. A friend whose tastes tend to be quite close to my own was very fond of the DS title, and went as far as to say that the ending made her cry, so fingers crossed! :D

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Should Random Battles Be Done Away With?
« on: July 11, 2011, 09:33:43 PM »
It's worth remembering that visible encounters can be screwed up too. Make them too hard to avoid, thus pointless to implement, or they do something like Mystic Quest and never move around.

Pretty much this. I've always found having the illusion of being able to avoid what are essentially compulsory fights to be far more annoying than random encounters. With the former, I get frustrated because I know that I should be able to avoid the battles, but the game is too poorly designed to make trying to do so any more than a waste of time. With the latter, I kind of just shrug my shoulders and get on with it. Of course both systems can be hellish when implemented badly, and neither a three step encounter rate nor dungeons made of narrow corridors packed with lightning quick enemies are really commendable. Still, personally I've always detested the latter more.

Actually, semi-relevant: I'm replaying Chrono Cross just now. And despite having non-random battles, its regular encounters are at times the most repulsive I've ever had to endure. Partially it's because of an abundance of scripted events and narrow walkways that make a good number of the battles every bit as unavoidable as random encounters, but more than that, the problem is the character progression system. Since you stop gaining stat increases from regular enemies in a given location very quickly, there comes a point a short ways into each dungeon when you stand to gain literally nothing from fighting the monsters roaming around. And since almost all of your healing in the game is governed by elements that you can reuse indefinitely, it's not even like battles serve the function of gradually grinding away the player's resources and increasing the difficulty of the boss fights. I love the game's boss fights and story, and visually and aurally it's one of the most beautiful I've ever played, but I want to slap whoever thought it'd be a good idea to force battles on the player when the game so clearly isn't designed for it. Sure there's a small concession made in that you can run away from any battle you like, but that still means sitting through the flashy battle transitions and camera swirls that were par the course for 3D RPGs of that era. How hard is it to just make enemies flee from the player when they've reached their quota of stat increases in a given area? Or simply to stop them from respawning altogether in a given location until you exit to the world map?

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Tales Series
« on: July 09, 2011, 01:51:14 AM »
My favorite thing about the PS3's region-independence:  You can even earn trophies from games outside of your region in the same account you normally use.

In Final Fantasy XIII's case, it actually detected what language setting your PS3 had and changed the trophies list accordingly. I imported the Japanese one back when it first came out, and all the trophies were already in English on my European PS3, even though the English version was a couple of months away. I thought it was kind of cool that they had planned in advance and already unified the trophies list like that.

Of course one negative side to the whole games actually expecting to be played on consoles from a range of different regions thing is that some Japanese games auto-switch the O and X buttons to the American / European layout. Which would be fine in itself, but unfortunately it's a case of emphasis on the some. I was playing Atelier Totori (which keeps the Japanese layout, as does every Gust PS3 game I've tried) and Tales of Vesperia (which swaps automatically to the Western one) side by side, and kept exiting out of menus by accident. So frustrating. :'D

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenoblade + The Last Story
« on: June 30, 2011, 02:27:35 PM »
There's that, but since Xseed is using NOE's translation, who knows what else they can do? It's not like Xenoblade and the Last Story were developed by Nintendo. It's kinda like Sony and the Wild Arms games. ...which Xseed also happen to publish.

Xenoblade technically was, being that Monolith are now a first party Nintendo developer. Media Vision have very close ties to Sony, but they're not actually owned by the company, and have developed games for rival consoles. It's a fair point for The Last Story, though.

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