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6466  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: RPGFan Game Journal XX - Sharpened Pencil Midnight Bathouse on: February 18, 2010, 10:53:00 PM
Sadly enough, the plot up until Arbiter's Ground just got thrown out the window, including anything that had to do with the drug trip.

Drug trip..?

Anyway, finished the bridge and got THAT heart piece as well as the one sitting on the rock in... Need to get three or so golden bugs I missed. One of them's the stag beetle, which I checked an FAQ on, and I didn't see it where it said it should be. Peculiar.

Anyway this got me sort of nostalgic for OoT, which I... know is a lot clunkier but apparently Farore's Wind would address some of the issues I was having with falling the fuck off of platforms.

Be nice if that game had an in-game journal or a fortune teller or something. Of course I COULD just pretend I'm back in Ultima 4-7 and take notes of EVERYTHING. Which I should do because that's sort of fun actually.

Theoretically I should be studying for my comp sci exam tomorrow. Theoretically I have never cared less about a class in my life. I'd rather work on that anteater priestess drawing I started a few days ago. I find that more personally satisfying. I guess if I study for the comp sci exam though I could eventually get a job working 90 hours a week in the basement of some software company's India branch.
6467  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Help needed - difficult RPGs? on: February 18, 2010, 09:55:32 PM
Modern PC roguelikes

You do realize that of all of the modern PC roguelikes you listed off, ADOM's the only one that didn't start being developed until AFTER the 80s, right?

Also Angband is more or less defined by grinding. While it's not everything, it does overcome a lot of stuff and is required. The amount of grind in Angband is one of the things that sets it apart from Nethack, where grinding is a VERY VERY VERY HORRIBLE IDEA.

And I'd sort of hesitate about including Nethack and ADOM for a couple of reasons that I don't really know enough about to accurately explain. Mostly because Nethack, at least, is theoretically impossible to beat without knowledge of the spoilers, and most of that knowledge is stuff you'd just have to stumble upon by luck or... I don't know. ADOM has substantially fewer instances of that AFAIK but the ones it does have are... bigger.

Anyway, Gothic 1 and 2 are probably good candidates. No amount of grinding will help you if you suck at the combat because A) You'll get killed while trying to grind. B) You don't really get much XP from killing stuff anyway. C) If you can't block and time your swings right, seriously, no matter what level you are even fairly easy enemies can kill you if they're in packs.
6468  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: 12 y/o Jailed for Drawing on Desk on: February 18, 2010, 09:46:06 PM
The biggest problem with parents not raising their kids properly is that their kids grow up to be just like them, only worse off, and then you get really nasty brain drain effects in areas, shit like, I don't know, reverse gentrification, previously fairly affluent areas getting poor... whatever you call it. Basically the amount of stupid in a given area just concentrates and gets higher, because there's nothing to draw any new people in.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iG9CE55wbtY&feature=channel Also tangentially relevant. I feel like college, at least, has killed my creativity, although that's another rant, and I'll openly admit that the only reasons I want to go to grad school are because A) it's an excuse to move to a city where I actually want to live and B) I can stay on my parents' insurance policy till I'm like, 25 as long as I remain in school till then.

In regards to A, I'm hoping it's really just this town that's making me feel so... void inside.

Homeschooling folks. Learn it, Live it, Love it.

Homeschooling. Most of the homeschoolers I know are completely fucking insane religious fundamentalists who let their children play with axes and no I'm not fucking making that up. They scare the fuck out of me. It's like some fucked up Branch Davidian vibes coming from them.
6469  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: 12 y/o Jailed for Drawing on Desk on: February 18, 2010, 08:59:30 PM
you know, POSITIVE behavior management with children.

Okay, even if you can't do positive behavior management, isn't it just easier to like, verbally bitchslap them instead of calling the cops? And I'm PRETTY SURE the school district has to pay the police for coming out there given that it's not an emergency situation and still runs up the police department's... money.

Kind of surprised the police actually arrested the kid though. If I was the cop I would've just called the principal a dumbass or whatever and then punched his nuts for wasting my precious time.
6470  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: 12 y/o Jailed for Drawing on Desk on: February 18, 2010, 05:52:16 PM
My 7th grade math teacher kept a supply of hamsters on hand and if she caught us writing on the desks she'd make us kill one. After awhile, though, we got used to it and started finding it fun. We'd write on the desks just so we COULD smash a hamster in.

On the last day of class she told us what complete monsters we'd become, and revealed that the obliteration of every last shred of the humanity that we had once had was the real punishment.

True story, bro.
6471  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Help needed - difficult RPGs? on: February 18, 2010, 01:07:01 PM
But even without the grinding, say if you play PhanStar 2 with a Game Genie or something, those dungeons are still really difficult.  Even the first one kicks the collective ass of every final dungeon in the last 10 years' worth of JRPGs.

See, what you're calling difficult I just call poorly designed, though.
6472  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Help needed - difficult RPGs? on: February 18, 2010, 09:36:04 AM
I'd say PS2 was more unfair than difficult. Also it's mostly a grindfest. You can't really GET good at it because it just involves some singular mechanical action and that's it.

Most hard games are in actuality not hard in a similar sense, I've... discovered.
6473  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: RPGFan Game Journal XX - Sharpened Pencil Midnight Bathouse on: February 18, 2010, 09:13:31 AM
You have to do it a second time if you want to get an item needed for the Upgraded Shield. Fortunately, its not that hard at all since they always do the same routine.

I went back and managed to do it. The problem is more that it's just memorizing the pattern and I've gotten sort of tired of things that require memorization about actual player skill, which is why a lot of things in LttP bother me as well, like the bosses.

Also you have to grapple the reappearing block (or just shoot it) and then make the jump which is incredibly annoying due to all of the timing involved.

The block never reappeared for me, actually. Also I managed to jump up the hole on the first try somehow.

Not actually sure what the spring ball would be useful for anyway. I thought it was cool just getting to it thought.

Also I think the guy was talking about something in TP.

Anyway, as I said, went back to Oracle of Seasons after all. Up to the fourth dungeon. Stuff's actually getting interesting now that I have three seasons in the rod. J'ai besoind de ещ figure out some stuff with the object trading quest. Giving the Lon Lon egg to maple wasn't exactly intuitive because the entire game up to that point you're trying to AVOID her.

Also in TP I got the heart piece from the bird minigame, which is a minigame I was actually cool with because it's just a really simple math puzzle and doesn't actually involve much in the way of memorizing patterns and things.
6474  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Top Ten "Top Ten" Lists on this board look just post stuff here and talk openly on: February 18, 2010, 01:16:47 AM
Someone on this board, I can't remember who, said the game would be good if it came with a better instruction manual.

Probably me. If you have any questions about how to play it I'll be glad to answer them ~~~ Just PM me or something.

I found Unlimited Saga pretty intuitive, actually. The only odd thing I found is that you use the d-pad to control the menu and the stick to control the characters, while on the map screen. Also the thing where you can cycle between different objects at your current location when you're in the... interaction menu. I wasn't immediately aware that you could do that.

The manual DOES neglect to mention a couple things like how speed affects combos and how different weapons do pierce v. strike damage and why that matters. In the former case, though, it's almost identical to CTB in FFX, and in the latter case, you can basically tell by attack animations (beams/straight lines/stuff like that = pierce. If the attack effect looks more like an explosion, it's strike. I think there's also blunt but it works pretty much the same was as strike. And basically, pierce focuses more on LP damage and strike focuses more on HP damage).

Anyway a few general tips.

1. Weapons have limited uses but I'm pretty sure that if you run out of uses mid battle, you can keep using it for the remainder of that battle.

2. The equipment system is more or less identical to FFXs. Weapons and armor aren't so much inherently unique but they have different abilities. Generally, since LP is more important than HP, you want armor with skills like Life Protection and Pierce Protection/O Pierce/whatever it's called (since pierce does more LP damage than strike. Or slash. Or whatever).

3. The order you issue commands in battle is actually how your dudes are placed on the field. There's either two or three rows depending on a couple of things, primarily how many dudes you gave orders. If you give commands to four different dudes, you'll only get two rows, basically. AFAIK this MOSTLY affects odds of getting attacks, so you want to give commands to guys with better armor/more LP/more HP first. As far as the actual order that commands get executed in, you press left or right on... I think the d-pad, maybe it's the stick, in battle to select who you want to go first. That'll make more sense if you actually look at it in the game.

4. Basically, you want some people to focus on slash attacks and some to focus on pierce attacks. The way HP and LP work is that HP is sort of like "armor" and LP is your REAL HP. The higher your HP is, the less likely you are to lose LP, although certain attacks can still do LP damage directly (which is why you want armor with Life Protection and Pierce Guard/O Pierce!). Same applies to the enemies. So you send out the slash attack guys first, have them do a lot of HP damage to weaken the enemy's defense, and then you send out the pierce guys to rack up massive LP damage. Doesn't matter so much for regular enemy encounters, but it's really helpful with bosses.

5. Play as Laura or the uh older magician chick first. They're easier. Kurt isn't particularly hard but he and Ventus both have this one quest called "Veil of Sorrows" or something which is sort of a pain because your party gets split up to do it and the map is really confusing.

6. It has a lot of RPG trappings, but it's by far more of a turn-based strategy game than it is a straight-up RPG.

Anyway, unintuitive is something like Powermonger where you have a million little buttons with pictographs on them and no tool tips.


Seriously I have no idea what any of those do.
6475  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Top Ten Final Fantasy Favorite Order? on: February 17, 2010, 06:07:01 PM
I would've really liked Mystic Quest if it weren't for a few stupid things. Like, had they gotten rid of those battlefileds, or better yet, replaced the ten regular fights with a single, optional boss battle. Also better dungeon layouts with fewer encounters or enemies that moved around...
6476  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Top Ten Final Fantasy Favorite Order? on: February 17, 2010, 03:52:10 PM
OH AND LET'S NOT FORGET!!! Learning abilities from equipment. This is awesome.

I have no idea how I missed this.

I DON'T necessarily agree that learning abilities from equipment is the best possible idea, although I did like it. Why it's important though is that it deals with weapon obsolescence. Every weapon in FFIX is rendered unique in in some way, either because of the skill you learn from it or the Added Ability... stats. It's not really a PERFECT solution but it's better, to me, than the norm where every weapon is essentially identical except in stats, and the stats increase in a strictly linear fashion.

Lots of magic spells, but none of which are useful in any way due to Limit Breaks and Junction system

What about that spell that let you use limit breaks immediately/constantly (which I never used because I got through the entire game up till like the final dungeon by just spamming summons).
6477  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: RPGFan Game Journal XX - Sharpened Pencil Midnight Bathouse on: February 17, 2010, 03:40:47 PM
I liked DS2's story more. DS1 had this whole... random mish-mash of old-time conspiracy theories vibe to it. And the writing was goofy. DS2 tones down the 1930s gangster slang a lot.
6478  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: is castlevania symphony of the night a RPG? on: February 17, 2010, 12:33:13 AM
Preempting this thread into something interesting.


I agree with Miyamoto's point. But one of the comments...

RPGs are disappearing as a popular genre because their designs and mechanics are being subsumed by better playing games. Adventure games met largely the same fate. Both have exceptions and niche markets of course.

I'm also inclined to agree with this, sort of. I DON'T think this is actually happening yet, but I see it happening. The opposite, though, I see as very true--RPGs incorporating elements from other genres that just inherently... play better.

In other words, no, I DON'T think that traditional RPGs really play all that well, and I think you end up with some decidedly non-traditional designs because of it.

Or maybe I don't agree at all. Interesting food for thought, in any case.
6479  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Top Ten Final Fantasy Favorite Order? on: February 16, 2010, 11:10:25 PM
10 (Honestly, I just loved the battle system and the Sphere Grid.  Blitzball was pretty fun to mess with too.  Not too thrilled with the main game though.  Made Status Ailments relevant for most of the game, which was kind of cool)

Why couldn't they have re-used CTB in another game? They used ATB for like, what, six? And CTB for one?

Square's constant refusal to reuse things as of late means they never bother perfecting anything.
6480  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: RPGFan Game Journal XX - Sharpened Pencil Midnight Bathouse on: February 16, 2010, 10:01:44 PM
Is that the part with all those weird looking creatures hopping up the side of the wall? I remember trying to do that for hours. Pain the butt!

I don't think so..?

Devil Summoner 2 improves on the original in pretty much every way, btw. Know I've said it before, but...

Anyway I was playing Oracle of Seasons while letting my Harddrive defrag. I jumped into some subrosan portal and immediately had my roc's feather taken away, and the only way to get it back is some awkward, repetitive stealth segment. Yeah. I don't think I'm gonna be playing this anymore.

Discovered that there are glasses I can use to get water in Nameless. IIIIIiinteresting.

Then I started drawing some anteater priest/priestess thing.

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