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1321  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Tactics Ogre on: April 18, 2011, 11:21:35 PM
Had this in my hand today and bought Knights in the Nightmare instead, after reading this I might have to head back to Game Stop tomorrow :)
1322  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: character development on: April 18, 2011, 11:18:55 PM
Your last paragraph is a really good point. I couldn't agree more. One of my best friends is an avid gamer but I have wasted countless time trying to convince him to try some of the more "complex" RPG's. He has tried a few but even when he's enjoyed the story he seldom finishes them and he always is complaining to me about the boss battles being too complex and/or too hard. Of course he also isn't a fan of numerous side quests and leveling up/grinding, so that certainly contributes to his difficulties. I did finally get him to play Persona 3 and 4 and he loved them but he probably only made it through a couple of hours on Nocturne and anything else even faintly resembling a typical JRPG he will seldom even try to play.
1323  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: character development on: April 17, 2011, 10:54:06 PM
Let's get back on track here.  I am a big fan of a good story in a game, I will even put myself through some less than stellar gameplay, as long as I'm digging the narrative.  Yes, despite all that was wrong with XS II, I played through it.  That being said, I think what Eusis was commenting on is that the JRPGs just aren't packing strong stories these days, and if you're really looking for a standout story, maybe video games aren't the best medium.  There are some great JRPGs in the PS2 era that I have no doubt would be worth your time.  I really enjoyed the Suikoden games, because the story took me on such a great journey - I love being surprised and blindsided.

Suikoden really took me by surprise. It's been less than a year since I actually played the first one, I posted about it back in the last Game Journal. I really wasn't expecting a lot from it, but I had nothing else to play at the time and I fell in love. I don't know if I loved it so much BECAUSE it took me by surprise, or it is just that good. I'm going for just that good, I've played every one bar 3 now. For such a large cast they give everyone a decent personality. Kudos to them.

Valkyria Chronicles did the same thing to me, for various reasons the game had slipped under the radar for me and I had little expectations...and what a really pleasant surprise the entire game turned out to be!
1324  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: A dark game? on: April 16, 2011, 11:07:03 AM
The problem with jRPGs and dark themes is that they tend to throw in things like oddly dressed spiky haired blonde dudes, loud and annoying girls with strange hair colors and high pitched voices or some sort of talking mascot. Not to mention all the goofy foes these games tend to have you battle against (a squad of ducks, vampires with pink polkadot capes, fairys, ect...). One moment you're trying to solve the mystery of a classmates suicide, the next you're negociating with a giant teddy bear. It dosnt mean that these are bad games, far from it in many cases, but its hard to call them truly dark.

HAHAHAHA, when you say it like that it makes me wonder why I love Persona so much!
1325  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Persona 4 anime? on: April 16, 2011, 01:10:55 AM
I thought when Catherine came out, it was heavily hinted that it was going to use the same engine for Persona 5.

I read the same thing somewhere...just cannot remember where unfortunately
1326  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: The Walking Dead on: April 15, 2011, 10:48:44 AM
I read an interview by Robert Kirkman where he talks about the differences between the comics and TV show. He pretty much said he wanted it to be two stories with similarities set in the same backdrop and yet still have many differences. Either way I love them both. The comics (graphic novels) are so very well written that I am totally immersed in the characters and storyline and the TV show was, I felt, very, very well done as well. I cannot wait for season two!
1327  Media / General Games / Re: New Devil May Cry, bitches. on: April 15, 2011, 10:28:37 AM
I agree 100%, the way it comes across is the dev. knows (at least in the beginning) that people will buy it and there's $$$ to be made. And maybe it will be good, and to be honest I somewhat feel the series has been played out without some seriously new injection of life, so maybe...
1328  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: An appreciation of RPG stories, east and west on: April 14, 2011, 11:53:17 PM
Great game play will not overwhelm a poor story for me, heck if I wanna simply fight I'll play Guilty Gear or Darkstalkers, those series of games are great fun, but they're not (to me) great games. If the game is simply about battles with little or at least little of a story that interest me (Killzone for instance) I tend to get bored pretty quickly. However, a great story will keep me occupied for a much longer time even if the game play is not as good as I'd like (Star Ocean: The Last Hope for instance and Arc the Lad: Twilight of the Spirits is another that comes to mind). But I understand it really is all about different people's desires and what makes one of us enjoy one game that another hates (heck, I've given up on trying to get my friends to play Xenosaga). Now when the game is balanced that is when it really is something exceptional, games like Persona 4 and Tales of the Abyss were to me almost perfect and equal in every aspect. I think it all boils down to getting to "know" the characters, after all, there's no way I'm going to really care about their plight if I don't understand their desires and get a feel for where they are coming from and why they are doing whatever it is they are doing and/or trying to accomplish. This is what makes a great game to me, the investment I have developed with the characters lives. This is true whether they are "good guys" or "bad guys", even if I disagree or dislike them I still have been drawn into their lives and have become emotional about them. Couple that with (even) good game play and I am satisfied.
1329  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: character development on: April 14, 2011, 11:37:35 PM
I believe there needs to be a balance, as stated earlier pretty much we all tell stories about our past and yet we're certainly living in the now and looking forward to our future. A good game character will come to life (for me) if that balance is achieved. They need a past, certainly a present and some kind of hope for the future. So I guess I'd say yes, if all the cut scenes are flashbacks I'd probably not enjoy the game as much, although I guess it hasn't happened yet as I can't think of any instances like this off the top of my head...
1330  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Your Favorite RPGs and Why on: April 14, 2011, 11:22:18 PM
OK...let's see, in no particular order...

* Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4: pretty much nothing I can think of to make this game better. I felt the character development was great, battle mechanics challenging and fun and the whole SIM aspect added a whole new dimension. Yes, I'm a Persona fanboy.  

* Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES: see above, although I felt the battle system was a tad better in 4 and storyline a tad better in 3.

* Tales of the Abyss: something about this game "spoke" to me. I became totally immersed in the characters and while I know many found the story to be very cliche I loved every minute of it. I feel the interactions between the "good guys" and "bad guys" was so blurred and often so convoluted and complex it simply made for a wonderful story.

* Xenosaga Episode I: Der Willie zur Macht: this isn't a game...it's an interactive movie and I was totally immersed from start to finish. Religion, Sci-Fi and a touch of fantasy, are you kidding? WOW, just doesn't get much better than that combination.

* Rogue Galaxy: another that many will find cliched and done to death. But once again I found the story to be very well told. The graphics were vibrant and colorful. I found the battle system to be complex and fun and the sheer amount of things to do mind boggling, heck you could almost make a game out of the factory itself!

* Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne: hours upon hours upon hours to finish the complex (and yet somewhat simple once it unfolded) story and attempt to get 100% of the demon compendium. This game introduced me to Shin Megami and I never looked back, my first love still has a place in my heart, lol.

* Valkyria Chronicles: a RPG that turns into a SRPG that turns into a shooter game all the while telling a great story, incredible! I loved ever minute of this game and while elated when I finished I was also very sad that I was no longer a part of that world. Now that's a great game!

* Final Fantasy X: great game play, awesome (for the most part) graphics and enough side quests to keep you occupied for hours and hours, and not a bad story at all once it unfolded, especially the ending...WOW!

* Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga: wow, what a great story, awesome game play and I loved the visuals, certainly a great usage of a minimalistic amount of colors. And don't forget awesome, awesome character development!

* Fallout 3: not sure it's a true RPG but then again I'm not sure what I'd label it, other than absolutely incredible in pretty much every aspect!

* Honorable Mention: Eternal Sonata, Radiata Stories, Jeanne D'Arc, Final Fantasy XII, and probably a few I forgot...
1331  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Getting psyched for Sakura Wars ~So Long, My Love~ on: April 14, 2011, 10:41:58 PM
Just picked up the PS2 version a few days ago (had the Wii one for awhile but I hate the Wii controls) and I'm really looking forward to getting back into this gem! Anyhow, anyone else find the Wii controls a tad clunky and if so is PS2 version a better interface? (or maybe it's me, lol, I'm willing to admit that, just never got into the Wii much)
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