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2701  Media / Single-Player RPGs / suikoden V does it get better? on: April 23, 2007, 07:40:34 PM
Dash... Yes and Yes.

By this I mean, 5 is the best of that lot, by quite a bit. I quite enjoyed S3, but it's kind of an oddball, and it's not nearly as good as S5. I haven't played 4, but from everything I've heard, it's a complete dog (I've been avoiding it like the plague, myself). As for the guide... yeah, if you want to have even a REMOTE chance of getting all 108, use the guide. Between you and me, I used the guide and I still missed 3 of them.

And trust me, you WANT to get all 108, the ending you get when you don't get all of them is... well... let's just say something inside of me died that night, something that I don't think I'll ever get back. :(
Lyon... oh poor Lyon :(

Be carefull, it's REALLY easy to miss a few of the stars, as many of them can only be gotten during certain parts of the game. Also, wach out because once in a blue moon, a star will DIE (perminantly) during one of the tacticle battles, it's very rare, but I lost one this way (which by proxy, lost me another one as well), read up on this, unless you want to end up like I did. You have to get all 108 stars to get the good ending... all other endings will make you cry.

That said, Suiko 5 was an amazing game. In my opinion, its the first of the truly great "end of generation" PS2 RPGs.
2702  The Rest / General Discussions / PS3 Graphics... on: April 23, 2007, 02:10:10 PM
Just a heads up, I'm not trying to troll here, I'm just a bit confused, maybe some of you will have some info.

I was in the local Fred Meyer (west-coast Kroggers chain) and saw a PS3 sitting in electronics running Need for Speed Carbon. Seeing as though I've never actually sat down and tried the PS3, I decided I'd give it a whirl. I was pretty dissapointed, to say the least. The graphics were FAR from next-gen, to say the least, even on a large 1080p plasma display, I was seeing jaggies everywhere, uneven lines, unsmooth textures, just overall, pretty mediocre looking stuff. My biggest problem with the PS2 was the fact that it had dick in terms of smoothing algorythms, and everything just looks a bit jaggy, and I was expecting that the PS3 would get ride of that feeling, at the very least.

I don't get it, why do games released on the Playstation line look so much less polished than those on Nintendo's consoles? Maybe its just me, but there's always been this "unpolished" feeling I've gotten from games, especially on the PS2. There's a difference between "great graphics" and "polished graphics", and I'm just not seeing polished graphics on the PS3, where the 360 and Wii feel incredibly polished, even if they're under-achievers from a hardware standpoint.

Just as an example, Tales of Symphonia, I felt, had some of the most pristine looking graphics of any game on any system. Although FF12 or Shadow of the Collosus might have been flashier and more detailed, the graphics just looked glitchy half the time. Tales of the Abyss even more so. But, once again, I always felt that this was due to the lack of onboard graphical smoothing algorythms... maybe there's more to this than just that, though.

What's going on here?
2703  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Can* English Voice Acting ruins Characters in RPGs? on: April 22, 2007, 05:25:24 PM
Quote from: "dalucifer0"
Then you'd probably hate the voice acting in the anime that's been released in the U.S. the past few years, if you even watch anime. For example, the VA for Luke is the VA for Sasuke in Naruto, the VA for Jade is the VA for Jin in Samurai Champloo, etc.

VA for Guy was the main character in Last Excile, as well as Miaku in Please! Twins. Both serious, of which, I was watching at the same time as playing the game.

Yeah, basically the Tales games draw on the expanding group of American Anime voice actors (I wonder if its a particular company, union, or guild). I think this is currently the best voice acting we have in the states, at this time. Their quality has improved about 500% over the past few years, and their vitality really is starting to show. But if you're not a fan of them, you're bound to hate VA for any Tales game.
2704  Media / Single-Player RPGs / suikoden V does it get better? on: April 20, 2007, 12:48:50 PM
Since it seems like we have almost opposite tastes, and I loved that game, and it's battle system is nothing much to speak of, no, you should probably stop playing now. Seeing as though all that game is is one incredible international political plotline with really well defined characters, I don't think you'll  like it.

You don't strike me as the type who would love Suikoden... and Suiko4 was absolute crap, it's hard to base a comparison off a game that bad.
2705  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 20, 2007, 05:20:05 AM
Quote from: "Alisha"
i realize this thread is about story but that doesnt change the fact that FFX is easily the best game in the main series on the merits of the battle system alone. but im gonna stop at that because this is probally a discussion best left for another thread.

I'll buy that. I don't really play Final Fantasy's for their battle systems (I did enjoy FF12s though), but FFX did have a very deep one, in terms of tactical strategy. Still, for me, a great battle system, a great RPG does not alone make.
2706  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 19, 2007, 04:02:37 PM
Yeah, FFX was a big letdown for me. I actually started playing RPGs (and video games), during college because of it. I'd been watching my friend play FFX when it first came out... I'd watched him play FF8 and FF9 as well, but I hadn't been in a place in my life where I could really play games. Seeing FFX was the last straw though. I downloaded FF6, loved it, then got FF8 for the PC (loved it even more), FF7, and then went on from there. It wasn't until almost two years later, though, that I actually bought a PS2 and played FFX... and I was quite dissapointed with what I finally saw. Before that, I had been playing the previous games because they were the only ones I could play on the equipment I had. It taught me a good lesson about how newer, and better hardware didn't always make the better game.

Don't get me wrong, in the grand scheme of things, FFX is a fine game... I just had higher hopes for it than what it delivered. I was expecting it to be one of the best in a series of incredible games, when it was only a "good game", I was pretty put off.
2707  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Can* English Voice Acting ruins Characters in RPGs? on: April 19, 2007, 01:57:00 PM
Quote from: "Lard"
I thought Yuna's voice suited her perfectly. She wasn't supposed to be a strong character, physically, and personality wise, she was kind of timid. Thought they got the voice dead on. Tidus' was annoying because it was so nasal.

I didn't have a problem with her timbre of the overall sound of her voice, yes, it made sense for her personality, but half the time it really felt like she was just reading it off the page, and hesitating at strange points. There was a strange, disjointed flow to her delivery that just felt really off to me. She would hesitate at very odd points during her delivery that I could never imagine a real person doing. But as for the tone of her voice and her inflection, I have no complaints.

Anyway, fuck Shining Force, Golden Sun still p0wns in the VA department!
2708  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 18, 2007, 06:22:37 PM
I've noticed this. That FFVIII was fairly unpopular to mainstream gamers, but to fairly serious RPG fans, and ones that like the series as a whole (and not just a few specific games here and there), FFVIII is many times the favorite. Back at my college, pretty much all the big Final Fantasy nuts there thought FF8 was the best in the series, and were kinda ho-hum about FF7. I've met very few who thought that FF7 was all out, "bad", but many of us can't really understand exactly what the hype was about. I just guess it's what you're looking for and willing to accept in RPGs. My number one priority is good character portrayal... regardless of whether I personally "like" or "agree" with the characters involved. In fact, I prefer flawed characters, because I think everyone has their flaws, and I'm more likely to connect with them if I don't see them as some sort of idealistic Uber-mench.

I dunno, to me Cloud came across as the Uber-mench who just got his mind screwed with, where-as Squall comes across as a much more believable human being, with all of his character failings and unlikeable traits. I guess that's why I prefer Kuja, as a villain, to Sephiroth, who, again, just seemed like the typical "evil badass" architype... the flawless human being with an evil adjenda. These types of characters bore me. I'd like to see some shades of grey. I feel like FF8 and FF9 offer me more shades of gray than FF7 or FFX do.

Unfortunately, the 13-18 year old crowd, who's still searching for their personal identity, has always turned to Uber-mench-like characters as a way of trying to imprint themselves onto their favorite characters. In some cases, they become a bit intimidated by flawed characters, as these identities tend to reflect the imperfections in themselves that they'd rather ignore. But I'm not 18 anymore... I'm almost 26, and I only started playing RPGs, heavilly, at 21. I don't know what I would have thought, had I picked up FF7 when it had first come out... maybe I would have seen things differently. But now, I'm just bored by perfection, and long to see inimate growth in a believably human form.
2709  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Why not: all time favourite RPG on: April 18, 2007, 03:00:38 PM
Quote from: "MartinMM"
3 Tales of Eternia

After Tales of the Abyss, I'd like to check out some of this other stuff... what is ToE out for? I've played Symphonia and Abyss, now... What should I play next?
2710  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 18, 2007, 02:01:11 PM
Quote from: "Bloodstar6078"
Anyways, of the games I've played I'd have to say FFVIII is one of my favorite games for the story. There are a few minor things that drive me crazy like the age of the characters and such, but those could have been easily remedied. My main problem with the story would be that Ultimecia seems to lack proper reasoning for compressing time, but some people have come up with theories to explain it. I'll just give them the benefit of the doubt. I won't forgive FFX though.

I'm with you on all of this. What always really got me was that the FFVIII characters always acted so much more mature than the characters in FFVII, although they were supposed to be something like 5 years younger. The "High School" always seemed a lot more like a college, and the way everyone acted (save Selphie at times) made them feel more like college students than anything else. It's almost as if, at the last minute, Square decided that their target audience was younger than the characters they had created, so they altered a few lines of text here and there to make them 16 instead of 21. I just ignore that and add about 5 years to everyone's age.

Ultimecia, I never put much stock into. She was a minor character, in terms of character interaction. Some villains are very central to the protagonist's growth (Sephiroth & Kuja) and some are not (Vayne, Kefka, & Seymour), Ultimecia is an extreme example of the latter. She's not really supposed to be someone you know anything about. Usually, I like to have my villains be sympathetic in some way, but since the story focuses so much (and so well) around the main party, this never bothered me.

So yes, FF8 is probably one of my favorite stories, especially from a character portrayal standpoint. I found it much more compelling than FF7s or FFXs.
2711  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Can* English Voice Acting ruins Characters in RPGs? on: April 17, 2007, 10:31:37 PM
Quote from: "Lard"
...great voice acting, as did FFX. (Tidus was a bit crap, but the rest were fine)

I dunno dude, I thought Yuna was the worst of the bunch, her delivery just seemed stunted and didn't fit her character at all. It felt like she was trying too hard. And while Tidus's voice was annoying... that was his character, and that's how the creators wanted him to be, I think his voice fit perfectly. I just wish the creators had seen to develop him a bit more before he kicked the bucket.

All-in-all FFXs VA was alright, but it was no Tales or Grandia2.

For some reason, I think anime-based games tend to be a bit better on the VA these days, because they tend to pull from the growing pool of anime dub voice actors, who have gotten about 500% better in the past few years.

Whatever... best voice acting = Golden Sun ;P
2712  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 17, 2007, 10:23:54 PM
Quote from: "Lard"
As for Grandia - I know how much people like Grandia 2 here. And I loved it on my first playthrough....the second time through about 1.5 years later....not so much.

It just seemed to hammer the "anti-religion" thing to death. And  I'm an atheist....but halfway through the game, I just kept thinking "I GET IT".

I'm actually with you on this, though it didn't bother me all that much. Few RPGs have good "stories", but what they do offer is wonderfully portrayed characters, and G2 offers that in spades. The plot is kind of a mess, though, and the anti-religious stuff holds the player's hand all the way through, as you said.

Tales of the Abyss - silly story, overall, but does a damn good job with portraying religion in both its possitive and negative aspects. Amazing character portrayal, too.
2713  The Rest / General Discussions / Sofa Company Ships Racist Couch on: April 16, 2007, 10:23:09 PM
Well spoken, I was just interested in what you thought of the subject. Case by case is definitely the best way to go. I have a friend who's pretty obese, for instance... and he's desperately trying to lose wait. Now, his eating habbits are pretty terrible, and he knows it. But so are mine, and I'm at a completely healthy weight... food effects everyone differently. It's not fair, but that's the way it is.

What I hate is people who've gone so far over, that all they can do is joke about their weight problems, as if that's "who they are". People like Chris Farley, for istance, who always used to really pissed me off. That's a really dangerous mindset to get into.

But yeah... I love the Avenue Q song, "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist", it's completely right. You can't help but subconciously be  a bit sexist/racist/whatever. The thing you gotta do, though, is fix it when its brought to your attention, rather than blaming everyone else for being too senstive. Humans are sensitive, deal with it. I fucking hate it when people say, "They should just grow a thicker skin." No, they wouldn't be pointing it out to you unless it offended them, it's YOUR responsibility to change it, if you can't do that, than THAT'S when you've crossed over into being an uncaring biggot.

For instance, the term "oriental". I love that word, I think it sounds really nice. It's also a directional name, the opposite of "occidental." But, unfortunately, its usage stems from a period in our history where we were really fucking horrible to asian people's, so it's no wonder that they've grown to find that word offensive. So I don't say it. I personally don't have a problem with the word, but others do, and its my responsibility to correct myself in that regard.
2714  The Rest / General Discussions / Sofa Company Ships Racist Couch on: April 16, 2007, 05:30:52 PM
Dincrest... I totally agree with you 100% on all of this. I'm just interested, your sig includes a quote that is mildly offensive to obese people. I'm just interested in your reasoning behind doing this, since you seem to be a fairly socially conscious person and all. Are you making fun of McCain for saying that, or do you believe there is a fundimental difference between making fun of fat people and making fun of various races? It's unclear, just thought I should bring that to your attention.
2715  The Rest / General Discussions / GaGaGame Journal #5 on: April 16, 2007, 05:16:39 PM
Quote from: "CluelessWonder"
TotA - I'm about 43hrs in I just finished
the Absorption Gate.  I'm currently visiting old friends.  
 I love this game. :)

Damn straight, skippy. What a wonderful game. After Okami, FF12, and Twlight Princess, I thought 2006 was complete... then I grabbed Tales, which is shaping up to be my favorite PS2 RPG, and falling just short of Skies of Arcadia for best game of the generation.

But grab some moist towlets, dude, this game gets wicked sad later on. 180 degrees from Symphonia, which was a "fun romp", this one has some real tear jerkers (and I don't just mean who Luke's thinking about while he's jerkin' it). It's just too bad that the graphics for TotA look like crap compared to Symphonia's :(

Oh, is Legendia any good? I want to go on a Tales spree after this (maybe stop for Ar Tonelico for a bit), but I'm worried that I've played all the best ones that made it state-side.
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