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691  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: August 14, 2014, 07:53:49 PM
The enemy/ boss designs (Atman included) in Shadow Hearts were certainly amongst the most creepy I've ever encountered in an RPG. It was part of what I really loved about the art direction. Some were downright "Linda Blair" quality in my mind. (NOTE: by linda blair quality I simply mean "nightmare inducing" for me)

= On that note, town design is somewhat uninspiring.  It's like they didn't want to do the research and show off too much?  Developers just took like the most random street of known towns and said 'fuck it' and just made an old-looking town.  It's sort of disappointing given the "real world" setting the game has.... Ho hum.  
I *do* however love the "music of London", it's truly making me question what I otherwise would have thought the big UK city might have sounded like (whereas other games/movies go the easy route with like Middle Eastern places by throwing a sitar, flutes, or other 'exotic instruments').

= But seriously, I *adore* the title if for no other reason than its incredible atmosphere.  I forget the faults.  The music is divine, the art/world direction knew what it was doing, and I think the weak/shallow story is made up with its unique setting.  Loved it.

= I'm actually pretty sure the graphics for SH:C are better than the FMVs in the first game.  Which I guess isn't saying that much given how 'rustic' the first title's graphics were; but seriously --- what an improvement between the two games.

What I really enjoyed about the towns and music was how they managed to create a real sense of safety amidst the horror at points. The soundtrack, in particular, helped give me the feeling that I was finally safe and able to breath easy without the threat of something ghastly or demonic nipping at my heels. Fine points to "Save Game" and turn in for the night :)

Lastly, thank you for upping my enthusiasm about SH: C. I purposely didn't look into it because I don't want to spoil much on myself but I was hoping the sequel improved something things both graphically and mechanically.

BORDERCRACK. Or Borderlands 2 as you may know it:

Made it to Sanctuary. Woo-hoo!! Can't stop myself from side-questing in a damn near "Xenoblade" sort of way.

Dragons Crown
Somewhere between leveling my Wizard from 15-25 he no longer feels weak to me. In fact, I dare say I'm beginning to enjoy his gameplay more than my melee characters. 4 Talisman in and no longer feeling like I'm worthless during network play. Offline I venture out with a party of Dwarves because Gandalf did it so... just seems right.

692  Media / General Games / Re: Misc. Gaming News Topic on: August 13, 2014, 09:58:16 AM
You know that the western release of the "Playstation TV" (as it's being called now) was announced at E3, right?

Don't get me wrong, having an actual release date is nice but you make it sound like you didn't even know it was coming.

Actually I did miss that news apparently. I am totally guilty of skimming gaming news sites and missing a ton. In truth the only things I really check out thoroughly are the forums here and some weird nutritional/medical sites. Forgive my ignorance/naivety on the PS TV. The fact remains, I am still very excited :)

Ok. Gotta tell on myself. I also have a horrible guilty pleasure of checking the mass of idiocy that gets posted on various Reddits as well.
693  Media / General Games / Re: Misc. Gaming News Topic on: August 12, 2014, 08:37:57 PM
I don't know if anyone else was bummed out by the fact that we didn't get the "Vita TV" released in the west, but I sure was. Turns out both NA and EU releases are on deck and not far off!!


I have P4 Golden waiting on a table till this gets here.

You and I both! LoL
694  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: August 12, 2014, 08:35:44 PM
Got a Saturn, so I guess I'll invest some time in Albert Odyssey (which I already have). Haven't played an RPG in a while...

Thats ironic, I was just thinking of Albert Odyssey and Dragon Force a few weeks ago when a strong wave of "Saturn/Working Designs" nostalgia swept over me. AO is not a title I expect to hear brought up too often. Underwhelming as it may have been, I remember loving the atmosphere and tone of the game when I was younger.

Another big thing about X-Com: EW I just saw: missions are on timers.

On EU, there's like 3 timers (UFO, abduction and terror).
In EW, there's UFO, abduction, terror, EXALT, council missions & special.

Problem is, there's no global cooldown.
I just had to do a Terror Attack, then Homebase getting attacked, and then retrieving EXALT undercover mission in 1 day.
Good thing my whole barrack was healthy at the start of this, because everyone went to the medbay after that (or the graveyard for some)

More irony! I just picked this up reeeeaaaal cheap but I'm holding off giving it a go due to Xillia 2's release next week. EU was a brief obsession of mine and I can easily see not looking at any other games for a moment once I get into EW.

In my neck of the woods...

I finally finished TERRANIGMA!!

With this, Shadow Hearts, Breath of Fire 4 and Drakengard 3 complete I have successfully managed to polish off all my intended summer RPGs.

Some final thoughts on Terranigma.

-This was, without a doubt, one of the most original SNES era offerings I have yet to experience.

-Having a hand in the economic growth of towns was a very cool side-questy implementation ahead of its time.

-Terra sported a soundtrack that rivals many of 16-bit greats. Quite a few memorable numbers here. The final boss music, freedom theme, the Quatro's (traveling nomads) theme will all remain stuck in my brains playlist for a long time.

-My only two complaints stem from the games challenge/difficulty. First off, 1 or 2 levels can take battle difficulty from damn near impossible to laughably easy in same respect that it did in first Ys title. The problem here for me, with Terra, is I naturally became over-leveled to the point where the last few dungeons and bosses proved the easiest stretch of the game. Secondly, I found some of the puzzles and brain teasers to be horribly unintuitive.

Finally in other news, I am astonished to report that I am completely hooked on an FPS title. Borderlands 2 is like digital drugs complete with withdrawal symptoms. I never thought I'd be saying that about a game that was not a JRPG nor a title that wasn't set Fairyland (I am suck for fairylands) but here I sit, completely enthralled with the game. I feel like Borderlands may be the only FPS title that can really grab me in this way, as it is more a result of the setting and charm of the title that drew me in. What ever the case may be, I can safely say I've found myself a token FPS game to keep in my library, as well as keep me fully occupied for the next week until Xillia 2.

695  Media / General Games / Re: Misc. Gaming News Topic on: August 12, 2014, 07:54:58 PM
I don't know if anyone else was bummed out by the fact that we didn't get the "Vita TV" released in the west, but I sure was. Turns out both NA and EU releases are on deck and not far off!!

696  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Megami Tensei Topic on: August 12, 2014, 07:32:18 PM
so apparently Persona 3 Fes is going/already on sale for only 2.50 via PSN. That is cheap enough to tempt me simply to play through "The Answer".  P3 may easily have been one of my favorite RPG's of all time but I simply DID NOT have the stamina for the "The Answer" when first I got through "The Journey".
697  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: August 08, 2014, 07:17:23 PM
I'm terribly sorry to hear about the unfortunate news Din. Health problems, particularly any chronic and/or degenerative conditions are not something I would ever wish on anyone. Its bad enough that generally any serious detriment to your health status makes you feel lousy, but the psychological impact of knowing you will constantly be contending with feeling a greater or lesser degree of "bad" really sucks.

Thoughts, prayers and well wishing go out to you and Momma-Crest this day buddy. Take care.
698  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: August 08, 2014, 09:43:56 AM
Beat FF4: The After Years iOS this morning. Don't regret my purchase.

Your a better fan than I my friend. I was pretty sore over the whole experience. Particularly the final dungeon boss fest followed by an ending that just... didn't bode well with me.

Congrats all the same though. Having just gone through that one myself I really feel that final stretch to be a test of patience worth a gold star, or at the very least a pat on the back.

In my neck of the woods, I beat Breath of Fire IV!!!

The final boss battle was absolutely freakin' EPIC!!!! This was because, if for no other reason than being completely under-leveled, it lasted like 2 hours. I really like how the final fight cleverly strips away the sustained effectiveness of Dragon usage forcing you to rely more heavily on other party members/strategies.

It was nice to see a far more satisfying ending to BF4 after how pitiful the BF3 conclusion was. I was expecting another anime still followed by credits and instead I actually got some dialogue and (some) narrative closure!

My final impression of the game is that of pleasant satisfaction. My only complaints, in reviewing my experience in its entirety, stem from how "small" or "contained" the world felt and how underwhelming the battle difficulty proved (most the game). They did a decent job of providing a sense of variety despite the small-esque scale of everything but I couldn't help but feel very claustrophobic the whole way through.

BF4 sure doesn't get everything right, but its distinct style really gives the franchise its own identity in this installment. The title carried with it a unique "magic" in the way all the art direction gelled that left me really feeling attached to the atmosphere, cast and experience. 

Great suggestion Dice. Thank you for the nudge to dive in on this one before Xillia 2. I don't regret it in the least.
699  Media / General Games / Re: FPS for newbie and Borderlands question on: August 08, 2014, 09:38:33 AM
came back to the thread to report, after starting over as Mechromancer, tooker was right (again). It is like a totally different game. She is waaaay more durable than the assassin ZerO and far more enjoyable for me to play as.

In fact, I am hooked!!

I can't believed I'd ever say I was totally addicted to a FPS but its got hold of me, GOOD!!!

I'll report more in the coming days over in the journal but I felt I owed the thread some closure after the communities ever so swift and helpful advice.

700  Media / General Games / Re: FPS for newbie and Borderlands question on: August 03, 2014, 09:44:17 AM
You can definitely jump right into the second Borderlands, and I would actually recommend that you do so.  The mechanics were refined in some important ways that make it more fun and less frustrating. :)

I think a newbie can handle it, but you will want to consider the class you choose carefully.  I might go with the turret dude (Axton, I think his name is), because it takes a little of the aiming pressure off of you.  If you get the Vita version (which I'm not sure I'd recommend for you because of the control issues), go with the Mechromancer.  (She's a DLC character on consoles.) The game gives you story quests and side quests like any RPG, but it does a pretty good job of pointing you toward your objectives and telling you what they are, so if you put it down for a while, you won't be super lost when you come back to it.

Borderlands is probably a good fit for you if you like to customize, because you level up and have skill trees, and you get loot in the form of guns and grenades and shields and things with special effects.  Like some guns have a chance to set enemies on fire or electrocute them.  Some shields will release an elemental blast when they get depleted.

Thanks for the advice Took!

Totally heeded your words last night and gave it a shot. I'm not sure if first person style gameplay is a thing I can get into yet. I really don't like how it feels coming off a strict diet of JRPGs with the occasional action platformer in the mix. I figured after enjoying some time with Modnation racer, anything was possible! LoL

But what I can say, is that you were certainly correct about feeling right at home in borderlands 2 without having any knowledge of the first. There is clearly a great deal I could love here if the gameplay does in fact grow on me. Right off the bat I really could appreciate the art direction and atmosphere.

I gotta tell on myself though! I did not listen to your character suggestion. There was an assassin. I HAD to pick him man! Re-named Shadow, it just seemed right.

And thank you all for the other suggestions. Much appreciated as always. Doom=Testosterone and tough guy+demons in my mind. I just can't get into that (un-deserved and jaded bias on my part). Destiny looks a wee bit too "military" for me, or at least far more so than borderlands. I've yet to look into Heretic or Bioshock.

While we are on the subject, though totally unrelated, there is only ONE game in which Klyde will assume the role of military soldier happily. That game is X-Com. Why? Quite simply it is a damn near perfect strategy game with Aliens incorporated to successfully lend a damn-near survival horror quality suspense. In a word (or two). The game is about is good as it gets for me without having "Tales" or "Mana" in the title.
701  Media / General Games / Re: FPS for newbie and Borderlands question on: August 02, 2014, 09:12:13 PM
C. I HATE military settings and I know there are a ton of military based FPS games. I clearly want to avoid these types, but does anyone have any suggestions of other FPS games that may be a better fit for me than borderlands?

I haven't actually played Borderlands so I won't comment on that (though from my understanding it's pretty much just a loot/grinding game like Diablo in FPS form), but if you're interested in something more narrative driven then try the original Bioshock.

No, I am looking for LESS narrative. I just want something to pick up and play to accompany/compliment my JRPGs really. I was simply stating that I really can't stand army stuff. In other words, no Call of Duty for Klyde!!

I've actually been thinking about trying Borderlands as well Klyde so you are killing 2 birds here since I had some of these same questions.

Great minds as they say Blace! :)
702  Media / General Games / FPS for newbie and Borderlands question on: August 02, 2014, 07:22:05 PM
So I've recently discovered that other games exist aside from RPGs. Though not nearly as enjoyable or rewarding (for me), they are fun for me to try out.

Now, I haven't played a FPS since the days of 32x-DOOM and Goldeneye 64 but the visual styling of Borderlands has me intrigued.

The million dollar questions are as follows:

A. Should I play the first or hop in on the second? Heard the sequel is better and I'm really just looking for a pick up and play experience here.

B. Is borderlands even suitable for a newbie who wants a pick up play experience such as myself?

C. I HATE military settings and I know there are a ton of military based FPS games. I clearly want to avoid these types, but does anyone have any suggestions of other FPS games that may be a better fit for me than borderlands?

NOTE: I like character creation. I like character creation ALOT.

Thanks (ahead) for the suggestions folks!
703  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: RPGs that All Children Should Play on: August 01, 2014, 07:34:09 PM
I tend to think that in general most 16 bit RPGs and ARPGs are well suited for young teens and beginners, with the exception of a few for obvious reasons. Simplistic mechanics and easy to follow plots with the violence mostly "suggested" by way of the animations and not so much "illustrated" as it is today.

I also vote Lunar SSSC, Lunar EB, Alundra, and even Shining Wisdom and Albert Odyssey (if one has access to a Sega Saturn) simply because when I was 12 or 13 nothing was as satisfying as a working designs offering.
704  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Thanks to RPGFan on: August 01, 2014, 04:43:46 AM
RPGFan, gee golly. Where to begin??

Well for one the community has taught me to manage my typographical verbage with far less ellipses. Remember a few years back? My posts where riddled with them! *tee hee*

In truth I still over-use the "...." but I am MUCH better thanks to RPGFan.

Thanks to RPGFan I have friends!! Its true!!!! In my lonely existence these little forum correspondences enable me to feel somewhat social outside the realm of my career which proves a wee bit more demanding of me at times than I really care for.

But now to the nitty griity. THE GAMES. Dice currently has me sold on Breath of Fire IV, 40 hours in and loving it. Dincrest is the very reason I picked up Persona 2 which stands as one of the most memorable experiences I've had as an adult gamer in terms of a narrative. Agent D introduced me Skyping and facilitated my first venture into online gaming. If it were not for Aeolus, I would have never got 108 stars in suikoden 2 without using a faq. Kevadu brow beat me into being able to finally put down a game I hate and not finish it without freaking out. And the list goes on.

I'm certain if thought more about it I could make this post exceptionally longwinded. The nuts and bolts of the situation is as follows. I like it here. I like it here a lot. In fact I may someday tattoo the RPGFan logo on my arm. The end.
705  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 31, 2014, 05:55:03 AM
Ok, I'll join the party!!

Here goes...

If Shadow in FF6 was the first character that exponentially increased my appreciation of a game for no other reason than their being it, Dias was undoubtedly my second.

It was growing up with characters like him that shaped me to really measure my games but how much I cared about the cast. To a 13 year old boy who just didn't feel like "Cloud Strife" Dias was a certain brand of awesome that really attracted me. In fact, post Star Ocean 2 I don't think I cut my hair til I was like 17. Yep, I am indeed a weirdo.
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