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1  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 30, 2016, 08:49:22 PM
LEGEND OF MANA -- First, word of warning to anyone playing this via PSN download. The difference I have experienced playing on a PS3 NOT IN GAME MODE vs. a PSTV IN GAME MODE is profound. Profound on a level of not playable (PS3) vs. just fine (PSTV in GAME MODE). That is, unforgivable input lag when playing on a PS3 that is hardly reduced with GAME MODE television setting. I don't know if this is the case with every PS1 classic or just terribly bad with Mana but I feel like more people should know about this.

So I spent a retarded amount of time sampling every weapon cause I "needed to know" which moveset/gameplay I like most. Then I came to discover that the weapon equipped at level up impacts stat growth, so virtually any decisions I made had to be re-evaluated. Going with Gloves, Spear and Bow for the win.

Thus far I saved a missing lady, took care of some highway bandits, got me some lil' apprentices running around my abode, weeded the garden and have been talking to trees, rocks, and a tiny cacti.... And I love it all so much in its charm I'm fearful to pick it up again until I complete Eternal Eden because I don't want to compromise that experience ATM.

ETERNAL EDEN -- This game just keeps blowing me away in its dungeon design and puzzles. Equally cool is how blossomsoft kept sprinkling more and more simplistic new function into the gameplay to retard any sense of a town-dungeon-town gameplay loop. I mentioned both of these things before but I need to bring em back up because after another weeks worth of playtime, it is still going strong on these fronts.

Coming this far with it now though I do have some minor complaints.

Boss difficulty becomes unbalanced.

There seems to be an ever so slight animation hiccup in the characters movement whilst running. This is minor mind you, but I'm a freak about this sort of thing.

Minor script/writing errors (not a big deal).

I'm actually trying to be heavily critical here in identifying anything I don't like. Barring the "boss difficulty" note, its pretty tough for me to find much I don't enjoy.

I'm now on my way to the token "desert area" and couldn't be more enthralled.


2  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Gaming habits and routines? How do you fine folks get it in? on: May 26, 2016, 06:01:04 PM
I noticed that I hit a point on games where I... overconsume a particular game and kind of end up hating it.

This is why, lately, I've adopted this approach where I have fourish games in rotation, and I try to force myself to quit playing a certain game for a little bit /before/ I hit that point. Kind of took this after watching a... I think PBG or Do You Know Gaming? video about how f2p smartphone games cut you off (unless you pay more) when you're MOST addicted to keep you addicted. I don't like feeling addicted to games either -- and I think that overconsumption feeling might be /related/, if not totally the same thing as addiction. Maybe this kind of reflexive revulsion when I realize I'm slouching towards addiction -- so yeah, actually wanna stop before that point.

Also I think I probably need caffeine to game properly (or do anything, really). I seem to have some mild ADHD-ish symptoms so idk, the caffeine helps me organize my thoughts enough to feel like I'm playing a game instead of just moving pixels on a screen.

A few notes.

Swapping out the game BEFORE burning oneself out. << this is huge. I've done this for years. The way I do it, is to always play something different on the weekend. I just make it a rule of sorts. Usually its hard for me to put down whatever I got going throughout the week but this strategy his pretty much got me to happily see the credits role on every game I've commit myself to for years.

On the addiction point. I eluded to the fact that I am somewhat comfortable willingly allowing myself to be addicted to games because I see it as the lesser evil (by far) given my history. I disagree with most "specialists" in regard to successfully combating addiction in the sense that sublimation can in fact be a great boon in the battle to achieve stability in ones life in my experience. This is a different conversation entirely though.

Coffee and nicotine have been the first line defense against my ADHD symptoms for years. I know I self medicate for a self diagnosed condition, and if I ever went into milligram/volume of my dosage folks would brand me a liar. This is also something I willingly accept because it works like a freakin' charm and I've not found the need to pursue pharmacutical solutions that will further pervert my already disturbed neuro-network.

These days, I play until I'm either satisfied with the amount of hands-on time with the gameplay or until I hit the endgame grind where everything becomes way too long and bloated because escalation is a bitch (the PS2 era in particular was lousy about this). Granted, I do try to come back to a game later on, but only if I really feel like it.

When you say "endgame grind" and "ps2" all I can do is think of NISA titles and shudder.



Feels like i just wrote something up for a personals section...



SHHHHHHH!!!! No one is supposed to know my true motivation for creating this thread.

Rig
Since we moved to our new house, I have the extra space for what is essentially my gaming room.  It has couches, our spare bed, a bunch of gaming related posters on the wall and an entertainment center that I modified so it can house all of my consoles.  The TV is enclosed at the top and I rigged an outlet with a surge protector directly into the (faux) wood behind it.  Then, in the 3 drawers underneath the TV I put all of my consoles (PS3/dreamcast/gamecube/wii/ps2/360) in with their respective games and drilled holes in the back panel so all of the cords can reach the TV from behind.  The only hitch I've run into from this set up is that my TV can only be connected to 4 systems at once (2 HD/1 component/1AV) so every so often I have to get behind the tv to unplug cables which is a pain.  The WORST though is when one of my idiot cats somehow manages to get herself stuck behind the television, FREAKS OUT and ends up ripping out cables and knocking over the TV in order to free herself.  Would love to find a solution to that that didn't involve throwing her into the street.

Co-Op
I tried co-op with WoW/Phantasy Star/Call of Dooty and it's just never been my thing.  The only MMOish game that I ever really got involved in was Gunbound and most of that is just chatting with your friends until it's your turn.

Alcohol
I don't smoke (anymore) and drinking always ends up making me sleepy.

Refreshments
I have to have water with me at all times even when I'm not playing games.  I don't like to eat though because then my hands end up getting messy.

Handhelds
I've actually come around on this.  I used to despise them.  But that was still when my only experience with a handheld was with a GameBoy with no backlighting.  Pretty much anything other than the perfect environment made playing that old monochrome device impossible.  So it was always just easier to turn on my console instead.  But since the Vita is essentially the 2nd coming of christ in video game form (aka if I'd had a hardware developer at gunpoint when I was 11 years old, the device I'd have forced him to produce would be the PS Vita with an ice cream sandwich maker expansion port) it has convinced me to try other things.  So now I own a DS too. 

When I moved into my house ( I live alone ) I chose a living room and a bedroom. It was not long until they became Game Room 1 and Game Room 2. Given the nature of my environs and how nit-picky I am about my habits its not wonder I still live alone :)

As for handhelds, I really tried. Owned a DS and sold it. Owned a DS again and sold it again. Owned 3ds and, yep you guessed it, sold it. Owned a vita and well... you get the idea.
3  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 26, 2016, 05:31:29 PM
So many games I've wanted to comment on here, but have no time. T___T
I READ ALL YOUR RESPONSES DEAR FORUM PEEPS.

This ^^^ happens to me all the time!!! Sometimes I fall asleep thinking of what I want to say/respond with here in the journal and it is PROFOUND!...  Then I wake and I realize the ship has sailed for one reason or another and my pristine-verbal-intent has been altogether lost {:-(
4  The Rest / General Discussions / Gaming habits and routines? How do you fine folks get it in? on: May 25, 2016, 08:38:08 PM
Gaming is a sacred element of my agenda. Our gaming environments and whatnot has been something we've touched upon briefly in this community before but I'm curious to explore the topic further.

From your habitat, to your preferential time to play, to any individualized rituals or habits you incorporate I'd love to hear how everyone else "games".

I think this is interesting nowadays because there are so many options and avenues. Between platforms, portability options and hardware I imagine one individuals time spent gaming could be vastly different than the next's.

Naturally, I'll start.

ENVIRONMENT- I prefer it dark, with my television backlit and ash tray comfortably accessible (I chain smoke like a loser) sitting far closer to a large screen than any optometrist would recommend.

TIMING - I am NOT a morning dude. When I wake I will occasionally get a brief session in because I can't animate for the day ahead yet but I prefer to game late after the days work has ended. I am very active individual who travels on foot anywhere from 6-15 miles a day on top other laughable ways I abuse my physical self and NOTHING feels better to me then finally sitting after that with a controller in my hands.

COUCH CO-OP or CO-OP in general is not for me -- Never been a fan, tried some online multiplayer over the course of the last year or two and ultimately know, with certainty, I'm a single player Ninja through and through. Friends/acquaintances who game have been offended by this.

INEBRIATION -- This might be a weird one, but I never liked gaming under the influence of anything even 10 years ago when I was highly addicted and drug-addled. Anything that compromises my ability to recall my game-time pisses me off. This point can go on to include that I turn off my phone when I game and lock my doors to minimize distraction. ANECDOTE I think this point seriously was an important element in me giving up chemicals many moons ago. I filled my time with gaming I wanted to catch up on and it quickly became a part of my adult life that, dare I say, replaced drugs for me.

REFRESHMENTS -- No food or beverage while I game. It is another distracting element to me. I do however chew the hell out of nicotine gum while I chain smoke and find it vastly increases my ability to focus.

NO HANDHELDS-- Always hated em. Obviously their intended use doesn't jive with some of the aforementioned points I've made about my preferences. Nuf' said.

PERIPHERALS, HEADSETS and BELLS AND WHISTLES -- Good sound is a must for me, however I get it (headsets or speakers). My preferential controller for all things is the Dual Shock 4, which makes the best PC gaming pad I've ever used (love that I can use the touch pad as a my mouse). I can't stand motion controls or really anything extra that a standard controller.

Think that about cover it. Looking forward to get some insight into how others enjoy their game-time. :)
5  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 25, 2016, 07:29:04 PM


Also, what from SoM are you tattooing onto your hide (or are you saving the reveal for when you post the results in the Random and Amazing Pictures thread)?

Actually I'm not tattooing on my own hide, although I'd love a Mana-tattoo. Funny thing is, I actually designed the piece about six years ago to cover-up a terrible mess on my upper arm. It is essentially a bastardized-shade conceptualized from some of the more contemporary concept art of the elemental (children of mana got something right at least!).

The reason Shade worked as a cover-up was his tonal contrasts and complexity, with which I can cover just about anything with enough labor.

Well, the gentlemen I completed my Mega Man X sleeve on came to me for mission impossible... fix his entirely messed-up chest piece from his teen years. Ironically he wanted Mana. Thus ^^^ the answer was clear.

Don't expect the reveal til winter as the piece will likely take anywhere from 8-12 sessions. It is (necessarily) MASSIVE and the whole thing need be started with layering of preliminary tonality to drown things out in key spots so I can create subtle contrasts on top of his pre-existing field of black.

This will turn into somewhat of a passion project/charity piece as I adore this particular client and there is no way in hell anyone would (in their right mind) finance the time it will take. The good news? I GET TO WORK ON MANA ARTWORK FOR A LONG TIME (even if I do take a pay cut for it, the enjoyment more then compensates)!!! LoL
6  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 24, 2016, 07:19:16 PM


How come, in the 4 separate times I have started that game (most recent in 2013), I have never been able to keep that process going?

It must be an LoM thing. Truth. I started the game once upon release when I was kid. Lost my saved data (thanks Mad Katz mem card POS). Started again, unmotivated and gave up. Adulthood-- Started game again purchased via PSN. Played hyper dimension neptunia V and it caused my PS3 to overheat. System was under warranty, Mana save was not.

This time is different. Why? I just know its the right time for me to play this game. Its my birthday treat to myself and I have a largescale Secret of Mana tattoo (as mentioned) I will be working on for the better part of the next two years of my life. My motivations are aligned to enjoy the shit out of it and this time back up my saved data!!! (Playing on PSTV, which is lovely compared to the ps3 because it emulates without any lag which I found terribly noticeable in this game).

I hope this tends to your other inquiry about me finishing the game as well. So long as this ninja draws breath the credits will roll on this one. Given how little time I play the question is whether it happens this calendar year or not :-/




Anyways, I've gotten bored of having 2+ hours of gaming wiped because of a string of incredibly bad rolls in FE:Conquest so I've decided to take a break with the Hyrule Warriors.

Hyrule Warriors: Finished Legend Mode, now on to Legend Mode Hard Difficulty for the rest of the Gold Skullatas.

Made the mistake of getting my feet wet with "warriors" titles via dynasty warrior's 7 empires. I say mistake because, given the volume of Musou games I'm sure there are some I'd enjoy, but Warriors 7 Empires turned me off to the idea entirely. No real objective reason to be honest, I just found it boring and uninspiring. Probably should have started with Arslan or Dragon Quest.

Anyhoo...

ETERNAL EDEN/ Man, when the game opens up the environs are GORGEOUS. The game is just pleasing to look at if you are into that SNES-brand of "pretty". Really impressed with how the title really undermines the most grueling aspects of the old turn-based gameplay so nothing feels long-winded or grindy. ---- IN OTHER WORDS (great puzzles > long encounters in dungeons, to the point convo without being long and wordy, different gimmicky mini-games sprinkled throughout non-linear exploration create a strong illusion to obscure gameplay loop)

LEGEND OF MANA/ Yup, it happened. I finally started a playthrough of LoM after having a Mana tattoo I have to do burrow its way deep into my cognition. I will not use any type of guide or reference for location placement which means I will screw things up but THAT IS OK. Why? Well one plays Mana for the MAGIC!!!

FYI, Magic sucks in Legend of Mana....

Also, when you inevitably take a look at the Forge and go "What the fuck is this shit!?!", don't worry about trying to find a guide for that thing, as there aren't any that isn't just for some kind of specifically spergy combination that nobody quite understands how they got to that point, but its an acceptable one, and by god they're running with it.

And one more thing. Always talk to the Cactus whenever you finish a quest. This will save you some headache later on if you care.

The magic in mana does suck. To expand, so does just about every other measurable gameplay element or mechanic. But the MaJiK is revealed in this fact. That is, despite its flawed-to-the-point-of-broken identity the franchise is still alluring and easily one of my favorites.

Thank you for the tips as always Aeolus (couldn't have survived my Suikoden 2 anxiety without ya, and I'll never forget that!! LoL). I actually already started talking with cactus constantly because I vaguely remembered that being relevant.
7  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 23, 2016, 08:04:12 PM



Anyways, I've gotten bored of having 2+ hours of gaming wiped because of a string of incredibly bad rolls in FE:Conquest so I've decided to take a break with the Hyrule Warriors.

Hyrule Warriors: Finished Legend Mode, now on to Legend Mode Hard Difficulty for the rest of the Gold Skullatas.

Made the mistake of getting my feet wet with "warriors" titles via dynasty warrior's 7 empires. I say mistake because, given the volume of Musou games I'm sure there are some I'd enjoy, but Warriors 7 Empires turned me off to the idea entirely. No real objective reason to be honest, I just found it boring and uninspiring. Probably should have started with Arslan or Dragon Quest.

Anyhoo...

ETERNAL EDEN/ Man, when the game opens up the environs are GORGEOUS. The game is just pleasing to look at if you are into that SNES-brand of "pretty". Really impressed with how the title really undermines the most grueling aspects of the old turn-based gameplay so nothing feels long-winded or grindy. ---- IN OTHER WORDS (great puzzles > long encounters in dungeons, to the point convo without being long and wordy, different gimmicky mini-games sprinkled throughout non-linear exploration create a strong illusion to obscure gameplay loop)

LEGEND OF MANA/ Yup, it happened. I finally started a playthrough of LoM after having a Mana tattoo I have to do burrow its way deep into my cognition. I will not use any type of guide or reference for location placement which means I will screw things up but THAT IS OK. Why? Well one plays Mana for the MAGIC!!!
8  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 19, 2016, 07:37:06 PM
@ Klyde:


Seriously though, Mother 3 has a lot of costume changes and that was one of the things I loved about it. Most of them are cute! The final one is not!


Aaaaaand you just sold me on another. Started Mother 3 ages ago and I couldn't grasp the combo-mechanic then I lost my save. Something tells me your little anecdote there was enough to nudge me into a "retry".

At this point, with how much I'm loving Eternal Eden and the slew of titles this handy game-journal has inspired I'm feeling sorry for the neglect my PS4 may potentially see this summer.

Star Ocean 1, Lufia 2, some Aldorlea RPG-Maker titles, possibly Legend of Mana, Y's (we didn't talk about it here but its on deck for me) all seem mondo-appealing now.


It is great, isn't it? It's like A Link to the Past mixed with Lufia 2. If one guy can design dungeons that great, why can't big companies like Square Enix?

As for why it's not more popular... It came out in 2008, when RPG Maker games were taken even less seriously than they are now. Plus, it's not on Steam. It's one of those games you only find out about through word of mouth.

I totally recommend e-mailing the developer, btw. He's a really nice guy.

I echo your points and concur on the man behind the magic. I've already been corresponding with him and it was his kindness that, in part, made me so keen on the title. I had multiple versions on my com, didn't know which was the "correct" one to play and he responded to me within hours with a download link to the present/updated game just in case. In fact, he has always responded to me same day come to think of it. Totally demonstrative of dedication and passion for his project and fans.
9  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 18, 2016, 07:04:56 PM


Linda Cube - jk did Lunar 2 for a bit. Lucia has a new dress. About to enter some ruins. Remia or w/e is freaked out by Lucia's voodoo earth magicksz.



I upvote Lucia's Blue Star/Jap-Jedi garb vs. her Pocahontas get up.

You don't forget these things because it came from an era when a new sprite meant BIG THINGS narratively and was mondo exciting.

Smart publishers like Bamco know Tales fans grew up in an era where seeing Cecil's D.Knight sprite turn paladin was a spiritual experience. Enter the age of DLC and they use this sacred memory as a boon to steal GP from my wallet so I can relish having my heroes run around in swim-trunks.

My point? Well, I miss the days with the Pocahontas outfit MEANT SOMETHING.

Twas just one of the many novel qualities of era I suppose.

ETERNAL EDEN// The pushblock puzzles, whilst unoriginal, are fantastic.. In the Jericho Tomb ATM and I'm so impressed with the dungeon design in this game I wanna e-mail the developer. I really can't believe more folks don't sing this games praise as so far it hits all the right notes for a classic. I will expand on this point as I get more time with it.

DARK SOULS 3// Can't believe I'm saying it but my time with DS3 is sort of handicapped by the fun I'm having with Eternal Eden. Gained a few levels and got some new equips so my hero doesn't look horrible in his new get-up. Nothing else relevant to report.
10  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 15, 2016, 07:14:02 PM

I do want to note that I feel like a lot of the Japanese-only SNES RPGs... seem to have a lot of technical issues. This is sort of apparent with SO1 -- it's not glitchy, it just was on hardware that couldn't really handle what they wanted to do -- and also seems to be the root cause behind my problems with SD3, the SNES Ys games, and.



I recall distinctly having the same notion after trying my hand at sampling Romancing Saga 3 and then Treasures of Rudra/ Rudra no Hidra (sp?) a year or two ago.

Anyhoo, I've got little to report. I'm reporting in on the journal here to keep myself accountable for being a shitty gamer this week.

I had very little time due to work, which was highly disturbing given how hyped I was to progress in Eternal Eden. Made all the more disturbing is the fact that I feel like I got very little work done. ***FRUSTRATED***

DARK SOULS 3/ Ran around undead settlement and leveled up a bit whilst trying out all the different weapons. Decided I hate the move-set for the Katana you get early game but hate even more that its distinctly better to use via raw infusion than like... any other melee weapon during the early areas. Strangely, the abhorrently standard (lothric) knight's sword is my favorite along with the Scimitar. I say "strangely" because I'd prefer a more unique weapon choice than this but the move set "feel" the best to me.

This brings me to a point about myself. I always end up settling on swords when there is weapon choice and it pisses me off. I try everything and occasionally history has shown the dagger to strike my fancy but I very rarely end up using anything aside from the conventional Sword. This makes Klyde feel like a boring and predictable Ninja. I blame early Mana titles hit boxes for setting this trend in my life, instilling in me some fallacious belief.

Other then that I poured over the RPGmaker titles on the Aldorlea website (that I didn't know existed til this week) and feel like a few of those really deserve my time.

That is all. Carry on ;)
11  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 10, 2016, 04:16:48 PM
Really wish they'd throw us the PS4 port of SO2 seeing as how its already translated and all. I was sure it was gonna happen and thus waited but now I'm not so sure.

At this rate, reading Mesh's updates will coax me into SO1 before Squeenix gets the ball rolling on that one.

Shame too, I imagine some trophy-tastic ports prior to SO5's release could have fostered some positive press. I say "its a shame" because when I discuss up and coming releases with folks I know, who happen to even be JRPG fans, Star Ocean is like this thing that everyone knew about  but never got around to/forgot entirely.

-----

Eternal Eden--- Realized I don't mind playing as "youths" or "kids" when contextually there is a reason provided for them to behave adult-like. The narrative embraces the concept that the kids are kids because they didn't age and as such it bodes well with me.
12  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 09, 2016, 05:43:38 PM
Ok, gave a few titles a whirl to get warmed up to the UI on Steam but all that is an afterthought ATM.

Why? Well, I started up Eden Eternal (per Dincrest's suggestion) and it stopped me dead in my tracks. This game is very compelling thus far (meager beginnings).

I see quite a few games get tagged with the ol' "Inspired by Chrono Trigger/old Sskool FF" and typically, while influence is apparent, quality control doth noth do the inspiration justice in any sense. That is just NOT the case here. Though by my measure this game feels way more "Sega CD/ Working Designs to me" than anything else (a good/rare thing indeed).

What gives this game its own identity right from the door though is the writing and lore which comes off as a bastardized biblical fairy tale with unapologetic christian influence (at least in it's opening). In of itself, this isn't riskea' material per se'. However, the way EE throws it at you right from the door feels somehow bold, original and charming all at once. Again, this isn't something we haven't seen before but I personally have never seen it quite like this.

I am super stoked to continue this game.
13  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 08, 2016, 04:00:17 PM


You're either going to be hella disappointed with Golden Sun, or you should try for Lufia 2 first since Golden Sun's only redeeming factors are the on-field actions and the concept behind the Dijinni system, and neither of which are really enough to carry that game past your adolescence since there are way too many flaws either dragging things down or holding things back.


Hahaha!! No third possibility of enjoying the Sun eh?

Poor jokes aside, you actually seem to know my tastes pretty well judging from some of the points you made. I will be passing on Golden Sun ATM in spite of the charm as the cardinal-turn-based-sin for me is "too easy". Thank you for making that particular point abundantly clear and substantiating it so well. I can sometimes overlook this in titles outside the realm of the classic JRPG but in a turn based affair it really puts me to sleep.

I love how this little discussion snowballed into a few day affair as now between you, Mesh and Dincrest I feel like I've seriously refined my selections. I think a I maybe going backsies on my Sword of Mana motivation as well (thank you).

After 90 hrs on Disgaea and with Dark Souls 3 still somewhere in limbo for me, I'm gonna start with less of a commitment and (finally) get to one of the RPGMaker titles Din suggested and when I do move onto Lufia it will be Lufia 2 for sure.

Just checked out my steam account. I actually signed up for steam with motivation of exploring RPGmaker titles back in 2014 and am just getting around to it now. It sickens me that it took me that long to get to something I wanted. I need to work on that.
14  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 07, 2016, 04:18:34 PM
@ Klyde: Did you play the original SD1? Also if you do play Sword, your house isn't set in place once you plant it -- you can access it from *any* flowerpot.



Sorry it took a day or two to see that/respond. Work demanded most my time with Disgaea's finale' calling dibs on any free moments I had.

I only played Secret of Mana on the SNES (SD2) Seiken Densestsu 3, Legend of Mana (need to replay it as my only run of it was upon release looooong ago), Dawn of Mana (made me sad) and Children of Mana (made me sadder).

Certain games entice purely out of curiosity knowing full well there are better offerings. Sword of Mana is one of those games along with the IOS/Steam port of FF6 (no one need tell me not to do it, I know I'm playing with fire)

Lots of times its simply to "exercise the demons" and thus I get my fix and move on. Other times I stumble on something that really resonates with me in spite of the faults for some stupid reason. Hyper dimension Neptunia 2 was like the latter. Had low expectations, played because I just needed to "see it" and enjoyed myself likely due to it being just right for me at that given point in time.

I appreciate your input on the title BTW (as well as the scaling of the font for your rant--LoL).

Also, quick note on Star Ocean 1. I don't know which version you are considering tackling but I feel like that one is a double edged sword. The PSP incarnation was certainly enjoyable for its modernization which made gameplay mondo-improved but something of it felt terribly generic to me. It felt too much like playing a watered down Star Ocean 2 instead of playing an enhanced SD1. If I ever have the itch will certainly be playing the super famicom original before I touch the PSP title again.

That being said, I'm drawing comparisons. In and of itself, First Departure was a great game with a ton to appreciate. It is just terribly difficult to play it and NOT compare it (constantly) to SD2.

------

As for my GBA RPG inquiry, it also occurred to me I never played Golden Sun (actually it did occur to me, I just forgot for a moment). Checked out the RPGFan review and some screens... looks like that one is going on my list too. I may actually get to Golden Sun sooner rather than later. That look EXACTLY like what I am in the mood for at the moment. Visually speaking, it looks hella-Mana-esque to be honest.

Can't make a decision yet though. Just finished Disgaea and I need to let that "sink in" first.

------

DISGAEA 5-- DONE!!! I'm probably the only player who clocked nearly 90 hours on this before finishing the main story. I was way ready to be done by the end though as I think my biggest complaint about the title is that it over-stayed it's welcome. 5 chapters shorter would have been totally doable.

I think every Disgaea falls apart somewhat toward the end of the campaign. D5's degradation into "God just let me finish this to move onto post game" is waaaaay more dragged out then previous installments.

My other complaint about end-game was the Dragon Ball Z plot flavor that really did not fit in the Disgaea universe at all to me. I'm not saying it was bad exactly. Or maybe I am...LOL

All in all though, it did tie up the tale conclusively and appropriately. No one really plays Disgaea for the narrative anyhow and on just about every gameplay front it stands as one of the finest turn based SRPGs I ever played.
15  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: May 03, 2016, 11:59:10 PM

Sword of Mana is a game that for a long time, I considered to be the example of how not to remake a game. It added a ton of extra content in order to try to tie it in better with the other Mana games in spite of the fact that none of them really had anything in common beyond there being a Tree, a Sword of Mana and Rabbites (or were particularly well fleshed out to begin with). While it kinda sorta plays like Seiken Densetsu 3, it made a bunch of changes for the sake of adding features and not for the sake of playability (weapons now deal specific damage types like Slashing, Piercing and Bashing; weapons and spells all have a level up feature ala Secret's skill level system; magic now charged ala Legend's instruments, weapon and spell proficiency was determined by your chosen Class like SD3's system; your weapons and armor could now be modified via forging (also a mechanic lifted from Legend) and so on), but the game tried to sorta stick to the Final Fantasy Adventure's/Mystic Quest's/Adventure of Mana's/Seiken Densetsu 1's base which added a bunch of complications (they hacked the plot apart to make room for the Girl option, weapons are doled out largely based upon when they showed up in FFA/MQ/AoM/SD1, magic was just handled badly, forging required way too many rare items to ever make headways in, skill levels scarcely provided any benefit at all, the party mechanic is worthless due to the game hitting Gave Over status whenever the player's protagonist falls (regardless if you can switch to a still living, breathing PC to pop in and throw an Angel's Grail at the protagonist), Master Ninja was by far the best class in the game while others were dubious at best, status effects are somehow even worse than the original versions (the original version's status effects were either a mild inconvenience at worst or you couldn't use the items/spells designed to treat them until after they wore off), and there's a whole lot of extra dialogue (about as much as I've posted now) to either say the exact same thing said in the original game (i.e. about as much as I've posted since I last compared to what the game said about how much I've posted; in fact this is a good example of the dialogue bloat found in Sword as I could've just said "i.e. about as much as I've posted since my previous posting comment" and have gotten the same effect), or try to rewrite the original game's plot in spite of the fact that the events of the game are largely identical (which leads to hilarity like Count Lee going on about how he's trying to protect the Girl by stuffing her in a coffin or how Medusa wasn't evil, just misunderstood and that Davias is Dark Lord's brother and just part of a race that can't help but be monsters or Julius being defeated by a power of friendship speech while whitewashing the Green Aesop that the original game ended on)).

Or in short, it doesn't have the same issues that Dawn of Mana has, but it has a full set of its own issues that really drag the game down. I'd say you'd be better off either tracking down that recent Adventure of Mana remake or just track down a copy of Final Fantasy Adventure/Mystic Quest.

Your gonna laugh after all that but I think you sold me on the GBA version. LoL

In truth, I WOULD be all over Adventure of Mana if we got the psp/vita version. My phone is strictly meant for calling people, music, texting people, music, checking my mail, music and consulting my I-Ching app for wisdom.... No games.

And with that you guys have effectively outlined my gaming agenda for quite some time. You all have my sincerest thanks.
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