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961  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Catherine from Persona team on PS360 on: July 20, 2011, 02:52:54 AM

GT gave it a 7.8; but judging it based on the review dialog and not the numerical score it sounds exceptionally solid. If I wasn't interested before this would've hooked me.
962  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Mega Man Legends 3 on: July 19, 2011, 01:07:30 AM
*sigh* Alas this is one time I wouldn't have minded eating my words. :-\ Ah well; I wasn't really expecting it to succeed (although I wasn't expecting it to fail this soon) and I don't really buy anything from Capcom anyway so...*shrugs* Another VG company that means squat to me.
963  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: In an age of re-makes, I wish... (outside the realm of Square) on: July 18, 2011, 05:02:37 PM
Hmm...let me see...

Grandia Xtreme: The battle system was already quite solid and I rather enjoyed the dungeon crawling (which I rarely say about those game types). A remake would only need to tack on some of the stuff G3 added (like aerial combos), revamp/repolish the graphics, and get some better VAs. The story might've been weak but it wasn't too horrible, it was mostly the grating VAs that dragged it down. Granted touching up on the dialog here and there wouldn't hurt it one little bit.

Lunar 2: As I've said before, Lunar 1 gets waaaaaaay too much attention. Personally I thought L2 to be the superior game and if FF7 is supposed to be "so much better if they remade it with modern graphics" I bet L2 would be on par with such expectations. Especially if the battle system were revamped to be just a tad less repetitive. Either by enhancing it with more tactical depth or making it into a more action-RPG style battle system (Tales Franchise for example).

*cheating* Threads of Fate: Yes I know "technically" it's Square game but I'd like to mention it just because I'd like to see some other developer handle it. Square has...well...let's just say ever since FFX-2 my opinion of them has been steadily declining to the point where I have no expectations of them except for their inevitable demise. ToF I think should be remade in the hands of a developer more capable/responsible, especially considering the choices out there for handling stories that are both serious and comedic at the same time. To specify; I think ToF should be remade by either NIS or Atlus. As they both have shown the ability to produce fantastic games that know when to be funny, when to be serious, and how to skirt the edge of Japanese culture without being overbearingly fanservicey or stereotypical.

Legend of Legaia 2: Honestly, I've never beaten either Legaia Game. Something about them just lost me part of the way into them and I cannot specifically pin down what the problem was. Which was a shame as both games seemed to have rather decent potential. Legaia 2 in particular seemed to appeal to me more of the two so I would like to see it given a second chance. Maybe modernized graphics, an extended (and maybe not quite so cryptic) version of the Artes system would convince me to give it yet another shot.

Ar Tonelico: While it may not have been that long since the third game debuted; if there's any series out there that needs a second chance it's AT. A beautiful world, unique combat ideas (especially in the second game), the "potential" for decent character endings, AT basically has the framework of an amazing RPG...yet always seems to fail in overall execution. Whether its dumb as rocks protagonists, contrived and linear "dating scenes", gitch ridden programming, or strip-based gameplay, something major always seems to crop up in any version of AT that drives what should be a paragon of the RPG world into the cold dust. Take the concept and remove everything else, allow for more "free and meaningful" exploration of the cosmospheres, allow for moral style choices in the game (be nice to your Reyvatiel, or be a darker individual and force them to craft song magic at the expense of their sanity, ect.), keep the more creative battle ideas while chucking out the bad, and really, really, REALLY cut back on the meaningless fanservice.

Ephemeral Fantasia: Again another title I never really beat all the way but to this day I have a rather soft spot for it. I liked about half the cast and the story was rather interesting (for its time). The methods in which you recruited people, having to memorize events and think creatively to overcome the workings of fate, the integration of a musical game into the core mechanics of the RPG (take notes on how to do this Square instead of shoving out the drivel you are now), there was just so much to love about the game... Then of course you have the frustration of hunting down map pieces, getting lost for hours, too many random battles, a mildly frustrating skill system, characters who were utterly useless in combat,...ect. Polish this rock like your life depended on it and I think it could be sequel worthy. Not a diamond mind you but at least a ruby.

Orphen: Scion of Sorcery: One of the older games I will admit to having played, beaten, and honestly kinda liked. Sure the combat was janky, sure the dialog was weak in some places, sure the story wasn't ground breaking or amazing; but I did rather like Orphen. Heck the game got me curious enough about the source material that I hunted down and bought Orphen as my first anime box set ever. (Sadly the game seemed to be based more on the inferior second season.) While I'm not sure I'd want this exact game remade I think revisiting Orphen and including this game as like a "chapter" in a much larger project would be a decent investment of time. Especially if they rework some of the dialog and what not to put it more in line with what the source material's original season had to offer.

Popful Mail: I shouldn't like this as much as I do. Probably because the goofy fantasy hybrid thing reminds me of Slayers. But the VAs were actually pretty good, the music was catchy, the fights were challenging, and even though I never beat it all the way I found it to be a rather pleasant game to play. I'm amazed there was never any sequel or follow up. While it might be old hat as far as fantasy tales are concerned I think Popful Mail deserves at least one visit from the re-make fairy just to give it another chance to shine.
964  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: emotional RPG's ? on: July 15, 2011, 02:49:12 AM

Star Ocean 2

If you honestly think that any of those games could tell an emotional story then I suggest you start with Beyond the Beyond. You'll be weeping by the end of the first third of the game.

Seriously though, all the games mentioned in this post are terrible, storywise.

Granted its been forever and a day since I played it but what was so terrible about SO2? I recall it being rather average up until the halfway mark when
the planet you've been trying to save goes "boom"
and also recalling that as an emotional kick in the teeth; after that it had my attention in full. It wasn't a masterpiece but "terrible"?
965  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Theatrhythm Final Fantasy, Thread of people Dancing Mad on: July 10, 2011, 11:19:37 PM
SE: Oh yeah, those Chrono or Threads of Fate (or insert any dropped SE product here) sequels would be total wastes of money, glad we spend all those funds and development teams developing facebook games and crap like this. Brilliant!

*sigh* ...just let the industry crash already. Maybe then people with half an ounce of balls will take over during the reboot and produce something that isn't another franchise milker.
966  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: the otaku is killing japanese rpgs on: July 10, 2011, 05:34:36 PM

I can't see how you can compare moe and fanservice with raunchy humor and say they're only "mildly different" given the former's not even comedy. Hell, Japan has plenty of raunchy humor too, so that's more a universal thing than something unique to any particular culture.

This will be a difficult thing for me to explain because even though I know I have the connection in my head, the wires keep crossing. Driving all day w/no AC in 105+ degree weather hasn't helped either...>.<;

So let me try to summarize my POV and elaborate when needed- To me, for example, I see the Japanese "panty shot or gravity defying breast size" fanservice as no different from the western "Let's stick a clevage/side breast shot or thong/underwear outfit where ever possible". Or, for another example, the "moe-moe fanservice ridiculously popular pop idol" archetype is no different from the western "boy bands" or "Justin Beiber".
967  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: the otaku is killing japanese rpgs on: July 10, 2011, 04:00:24 PM
Random Observation #1: People claim moe stuff and Japanese fanservice is killing JRPGs stateside because that kind of stuff "just doesn't go over well here.

Random Observation #2: People in the West actually eat up that stuff; in a mildly different format. Juvenile sexual humor and pointless nudity, pot/drug humor, all basically the western counterpart to stuff in JRPGs.

Random Obersvation #3: Yet Hollywood movies, TV commercials, Western games, ect. aren't being "killed".

I don't think the fanservice stuff, despite really not doing the game any favors, is anywhere near responsible.
968  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Design choices on: July 02, 2011, 02:32:24 AM
Oh dear; this is really going to have to make me think waaaay back...


1. Proper Class Change Systems

Does your game have over 10+ classes available to choose from?
Are at least 1/3rd of those unique archetypes beyond the standard D&D "Fighter, Mage, Archer, ect."?
When I change a class does my physical appearance actually change?

If you answered yes to all three then congratulations! You just ensured I will play your game no matter what it is!

2. Costumes/Physical Customizers

Sort of a personal hangover from FTP MMORPGs but I absolutely love it when I can customize my protagonist's outfit to my tastes. It's just that little something "extra" that helps it feel like "my" world; allowing me to lose myself into it even more.

3. Choose Your Own Ending/Guy/Girl

Want to be the bad guy? Don't like Mary Sue Z who the game is really, really hinting (aka: shoving down your throat) should be your true love eternal until the end of time? Well the CYOE fixes that up quite nicely. Against as I mentioned in #2 it's just one of those things that help me feel like I'm part of the game; like I'm actually playing something and making choices rather than simply reading a novel that I have to sometimes press X a few times to get to the next set of pages.

4. Unique Tactical Combat Systems; That Matter

Grandia's IP system, Wild Arm's Hex system, things like that which break up the nearly dead horse "Fight, Magic, Item" tier menu system are breaths of fresh air and bring new life to the genre for me. I'll gladly keep the aforementioned tier menus around so long as developers keep making new systems like these to give me diversity in the genre. A counter example to this would be the Disgaea series. Stacking towers of character? Geo Systems? Magichange? Reincarnation? And more? Shame like..maybe one or two of those ever come into play during the main story. And some of those are only important for like 2-5 maps tops. Even then odds are your MC has such a statistical advantage that you can just ignore everything and "hulk smash" your way through.


1. Magic > Melee Imbalance

Games like the Final Fantasy series have always been huge deal breakers when it comes to this. Why have a fighter as anything other than a meat shield when spamming Fire -> Fire 2 -> Fire 3 -> Ultima pretty much OHKOs everything? MP has never been much of an issue in games like that because of plentiful ethers/resting points. Magic as a cop-out/ultimate damage dealer has always been a peeve like that to me. In games like Persona 3/4 or Grandia do it right. Persona, although you pretty much "have" to use it to win battles, gives you just enough MP that spamming it will drain your resources quickly. That and standard melee never feels like a waste. In Grandia sure magic was super powerful but oh so very slow to charge. Quite often it might've been more tactical to use a Combo to stall, a Cancel to set back a major incoming attack, or a Special for faster yet still high damage.

2. Item Crafting Systems

Sorry Gust fans; but I have always found Item Crafting in any RPG to be rather pointless and poorly executed. Between different counts of item failure rate, having to track over hill and dale for recipes, grinding out hours upon hours for the last few materials you need to make super item X, repeating the same crafting scheme over and over to make basic materials, or being punished/screwed for not making that "one" item either in terms of story or combat...yeah, IC can go die in a fire alone with strip-based gameplay. Speaking of...

3. Fanservice > Lore & Mechanics

Endless innuendo? Characters wearing less clothing than string bikini day at a nudist beach? What purpose does it serve in game? How is it justified in the world? It doesn't and is not. Granted I'm not objectionable against a little bit of fanservice here or there; that's just pretty much inevitable in virtually anything produced by humans. However the rate at which the "base level" has descended to the days is...irksome. To put it mildly. So much so that between games like Ar Tonelico, or X Blades or, insert typical Japanese or American game here that more effort is put into the fanservice than the parts of the game that really, truly matter. Priorities have been skewed.

4. False Advertised Hybrids

Don't get me wrong. If someone wants to cross a Shooter with an RPG; that's their business. I've played some pretty decent hybrid RPGs...online, for free, on flash game sites. Modern, production value hybrids seem to skew in favor of their non-RPG half yet still try to advertise themselves as being RPGer friendly. I'm looking at Fallout in particular (Fool me once: F3. Fool me twice: FNV.) Tactical RPG combat you say? Like VATS running out of AP so fast you basically have to spray and pray over 60% of gameplay? Like stats meaning absolutely nothing since a low Strength, high Perp, high Skill character does crap damage with guns but can pick up a metal rod, swing it blindly about, and be far more effective in combat? Yeah I want my $66 back.
969  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: The Merged Final Fantasy XIII-2 Thread on: June 23, 2011, 08:54:12 AM
I was completely uninterested in this game until I head the words "random battles" from a GT E3 vid. Now I'm skeptically cautious. Here's hoping they at least do the job class system (after all that's basically what the Paradigms are) properly this time instead of a lazy tack on.
970  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: PlayStation Vita Announced (late 2011, $249/$299 for WiFi/3G+WiFI) + some games on: June 22, 2011, 08:34:46 AM
Meh; much like the 3DS only one of those launch titles appeals to me. Probably won't touch it until there's word about some decent RPG releases. Or a PSN Store with PS1 & 2 classics. If they announced that I'd buy it just for the chance to download classic RPGs from those two gens on the go.
971  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Record of Agarest War: Zero on: June 18, 2011, 01:22:05 PM
Did a little digging on the Agarest Wiki:

Feel Link

A new system is introduced called the Feel Link System. The Feel Link System is where the heroine's costume, and dialog depend on their relationship level.

Free Intention

Another new system, players can build relationship with the heroines. This may result in new costumes,CGs, and items. This is accessed by the City Menu. These costumes have been confirmed - Maid, Shinto Priestess (Miku), a Nurse and School Uniform. This is not limited to the Love Interests.

Normally I don't say something like this but...Ar Tonelico rip off much? (Although I'll admit if it actually does what it says it does, and the things that prompt alternate costumes are actually meaningful without being simply "best answer" nonsense, it could actually be superior to the AT system.)

Also; a quick Google search through images reveals that even though this is a "prequel" they're taking the double or nothing approach that sequels do and giving us a one-up of the ridiculous sausage image from last game. Only this time it's two girls and one unbelievably oversized banana...*bangs head into wall repeatedly* Exactly when did Japan lose any and all sense of the word "subtlety"?
972  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Record of Agarest War: Zero on: June 16, 2011, 05:02:33 AM
I think that had less to do with the number of generations and more to do with just poor game design. Remove at least half the forced battles (maybe more considering the sheer number of them), remove the pointless "Hey this cutscene is the girl's asking what kinda girl you like to determine your partner" moments; and suddenly you have more that sufficient room to have inserted moments for proper character development in each generation.

I wouldn't mind less generations if it was a more reasonable number; like 3 or 4. With two you might as well not even have that mechanic. After all the Soul Breed system is so misleading anyway that it serves virtually no purpose. Sorry to sound so bitter but the SBS was what sold me on the original Agarest; and to see such a potentially wonderful game mechanic so sloppily and incompetently handled really left a jaded edge to my views of Agarest.
973  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Record of Agarest War: Zero on: June 15, 2011, 06:43:43 PM
Besides you can already tell the game's had less effort put into it as the number of Generations was cut from 5 to a mere 2. ~.~ Probably because the half-hearted Soul Breed system from last game was "too much" for their lazy behinds to handle so they simplified it even further by chopping off Gens. *sighs* Tis a shame because IF/CH/NISA/Gust (in general) has so many good ideas yet they never fail to utter wreck it either with incompetence, sheer stupidity, or by giving into the wave of utter perversion that seems to be infecting the JRPG industry. (Or multiple causes at once.) AT3, NPG, Agarest Zero...*shakes head*
974  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: George Hotz (geohot) VS Sony. on: May 17, 2011, 04:18:29 AM
Swarbage compensation is swarbage. *shrugs* Then again since I'm not fond of online gaming outside of MMOs and didn't lose Netflix during the outage I wasn't inconvenienced at all. So it balances out. XD
975  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: FFIV Complete Collection for PSP on: May 17, 2011, 12:14:12 AM
TAY feels more than just a cash grab with this version, however.

It may feel like it, but really... it's a graphically hanced port of a game that really was a cash grab. By definition, it's a cash grab of a cash grab. But having not played the new one, I can't really comment as to how it actually feels, so you're probably right.

By that standard isn't FFIV itself a cash grab? After all anything past the original Final Fantasy pretty much just utilized the title merely to leech off the success of the original since story-wise there's nothing connecting any of the games in the whole franchise until FFX-2 came along. Sure FFIV's a good game with decent story and gameplay but I'd argue it's not any more or less of a cash grab in origin than TAY.
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