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1066  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: where is grandia 4? on: January 13, 2011, 08:20:21 AM
Here's an interesting question: Which game do people think had the better battle system? Xtreme or III?

Personally I thought Xtreme was slightly better. III's ran more smoothly and introduced some interesting air combos, but traded off better melee combat for broken magic. (It was far too easy to get the ultimate spells and you could literally spam them most of the game for easy wins, almost literal OHKOs against all by the hardest bosses.) Xtreme seemed to have better balance and more of a risk/reward when it came to timing your shots and positioning your characters.
1067  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: where is grandia 4? on: January 12, 2011, 04:17:35 PM
That's a shame really. Xtreme and III might've had crap stories but they also had what I think are the best combat systems of any RPG in the entire existence of the genre. Even if Grandia IV is never made it would be a shame for the industry if no one else utilized the IP Battle System.
1068  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Is it worth Playing These Series in Order? on: January 09, 2011, 11:41:00 AM
Honestly...I'm not quite sure I could recommend anyone playing Muramasa. Sure it's a pretty game with a decent combat system; but it tends to get repetitive and the gameplay-to-story payoff ratio is very much on the bad side of things. Quite often I found myself wishing for more story in general, but in particular there's not enough character interaction and dialog to justify playing through it as long as the average player will.

It's like a parallel of Threads of Fate; only you're trading a better combat system and better graphics for less characterization (and vastly inferior Main Character x Main Character interaction) and a story about equally as silly.
1069  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: January 04, 2011, 09:52:41 AM
Y'know all this talk about Legend of Mana brought back a rather bitter memory. I'd always wondered about it at the time but never knew anyone I could ask so I'll ask you all: Is it possible to make the game "unbeatable"?

I remember now that when I played it ages ago, no matter what I did eventually I got to a point with like 10 hours or less where I could expand the world no further. And no matter where I searched or how many times I searched I couldn't find anything at all to progress the plot. So time after time I would constantly hit "dead ends" with no progression possible and eventually gave up on it entirely. Was I just missing something really obvious or is that a possibility due to design?
1070  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: January 02, 2011, 06:11:05 PM
Why would you need a guide for Xenogears?  It's a weird game, but not a hard one.

Back in my early teen years my spacial memory was not as developed as it is now. So dungeons tended to be more confusing than they really were. XD
1071  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: January 02, 2011, 04:44:46 PM
I remember Xenogears being a decent playthrough in High School; but that was also because I had a strategy guide for some of the more infamous dungeons, button combo lists, and hidden character upgrade/(s?). These days I find reading vast amounts of internet text against a stark white background hurts my eyes so I'll probably have to play through most of it without a guide...something I'm not entirely looking forward to.

Basically if you hated Legend of Legaia's combo system you'll probably hate Xenogear's combat. Personally I say it's worth a go; just to experience it at least once.
1072  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: January 02, 2011, 01:37:07 AM
Huh, weird. I never had any issue with ToF's controls; then again it could possibly be because I loved the game so much that I adapted unusually quickly (as a kid I never paid attention to things like clunky controls) and that set of skills have stuck with for a long time. I'll have to see if this is still the case once it hits the PSN as I haven't played it in many years. So if the controls really are clunky I'll be in for one heck of a re-learning curve. XD
1073  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Game of the Year-2010 on: January 01, 2011, 10:42:31 PM
That would explain it. The "weird" part I was referring to were stories/rumors I remember from ages ago when I caught snippets of anime/game news about stuff never making it over because the Japanese companies would charge ridiculous prices for rights to the vocal tracks for one reason or another.
1074  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Game of the Year-2010 on: January 01, 2011, 10:30:16 PM
... such as how expensive the Japanese voice track was to add...

This has me curious. Why is it hard/expensive to keep the original Japanese track? I mean in things like fansubs of both shows and games all people really seem to do is translate and then throw English text on top of it. Time consuming yes but if individual groups/people do this for no profit it seems odd that it should cost a company a nice chunk of change to do the same thing.

Or does it have to do with all those weird licensing issues I hear about between Japanese creators and Western producers?
1075  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Game of the Year-2010 on: January 01, 2011, 10:16:37 PM
I'd argue that games like Sakura Wars failing has a lot to do with how jaded Western Culture has become to Japanese Gaming/Cuture elements in general. I mean not even 10-15 years ago people were practically eating up JRPG sterotypes because it was something new, something unlike what Western Culture had provided for quite some time. Those games flourished because it was a breath of fresh air for people; and I'm willing to bet if Sakura Wars were 10 years older we'd be thinking of it as one of the great classics with die-hard fanbases that lynch people for speaking against it.

These days people look at a lot of JRPG stuff and go "Oh...it's X, Y, and Z...again. Boring!" rather than analyzing it from a perspective of someone who has never experienced these things before. Granted this is kind of hard to do seeing as how pervasive Japanese culture made itself over here.
1076  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: January 01, 2011, 06:24:19 PM
Just when I was about to give up on Threads of Fate, someone had to compare it to Slayers...
He he~, it's not "exactly" the same. But they both share the same concept of presenting a story in a stock-fantasy world with some unique twists of its own to the mythos while utilizing characters that, while are stock cliches of the time, have some good depths and nice hidden edges to them (well...Rue does; Mint is very much ToF's Naga).
1077  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: January 01, 2011, 06:16:49 PM
Threads of Fate had absolutely no traditional grinding unless you were really bad at the game honestly. It was one of my favorite titles on the PSX (still is) and one of my top RPGs of all time. There are only two times you should ever have to grind in that game. First is if you completely ignore your magic abilities and want to get a specific hidden item in the 2nd dungeon, because it takes approximately 120 MP in order to melt all the ice. What's past them is a special item (Sour Wine I think) which serves to cut the price of stat upgrades by giving it to the man who runs that shop. Second is in New Game+ fights against Rod since his stats go up 4 points in each category each time you wipe the floor with him.

As long as you keep up with your equipment upgrades Threads of Fate is easy, especially with the extremely forgiving resurrection system.

I can see why people disliked it story-wise though. It strikes me as similar to things like Slayers; you either connect with the characters and their world or you don't. It's not a perfect game by any means.
1078  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Game of the Year-2010 on: January 01, 2011, 04:07:24 AM
I'll put my money on the dark horses.

1. Sakura Wars: So Long My Love
2. Zettai Hero Project
3. Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors
1079  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Magna Carta advice? on: December 31, 2010, 10:05:22 AM
Just found a copy of Magna Carta the other day and decided to give it a whirl. I'm still in the first area and the last of an instruction manual is bugging me (but I'm still getting the hang of the core systems). I've already got some questions though and am looking for advice.

-I assumed battle in this game is full manual? Meaning the other members won't do anything unless I'm controlling them directly.
-How often should I use other party members? Is equal style leveling important or can I hard nose my way with the main character most of the time?

Any other advice would totally be appreciated. XD
1080  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Xenogears, Legend of Mana, Vagrant Story, and Threads of Fate ESRB rated for PSN on: December 29, 2010, 02:33:45 PM
Xenogears made me quite happy. Threads of Fate basically made my 2011. XD I foresee hundreds of hours being wasted on that title when it arrives. O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!
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