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736  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 07, 2014, 05:35:07 PM

I'm sad to say I've played enough to be "good" with obtaining said ending.  The game's problem is more that it's completely "Beginner UNfriendly" than anything.  The game explains next to freaking nothing.

You gonna play Shadow Hearts 2??  It helps explain things for ending one (and I must ask Klyde, I love you, and let me know if you're selling games again any time soon! :DDD )

Yep, I bought all three at the same time so 2 is just sitting there waiting for me. I would probably jump right into it if the judgement ring didn't start to get on my nerves by the end. In truth though I'm "saving" myself for Tales of Xillia 2 at the moment. I know Shadow hearts 2 is far longer than the first and I don't see me finishing it by the time Xillia 2 comes out. That being the case, I KNOW I would just rush it to see it through.

I've nothing to sell at the moment I'm afraid, but should that change I'll PM you immediately. A client/friend of mine made me swear I'd sell em SH1 when I was through with it. If he doesn't take it off my hands though I'll be sure to let you know ASAP.
737  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: BEST game you bought on a WHIM and LOVED <3 on: July 06, 2014, 11:04:31 PM
Shadow Hearts which I just completed was totally an impulse purchase last year, which I didn't get to until a suggestion in the SMT thread peaked my interest. Just finished it last night and loved it for the most part.

DMC in recent history was something I just grabbed off PS+ not thinking I'd ever appreciate it. I didn't love it to death but it had entertaining enough combat to keep me going til the end. And surprisingly I didn't hate Dante.

In not so recent history, the local rental store in the days of SNES shaped my tastes in gaming. Naturally as a kid I rented and played Zelda, Mario, Pilotwings, Donkey Kong et cetera.... then I rented Secret of Mana and my world was never the same. Were it not for the rental store, I wouldn't have discovered JRPGs until much later in life. You might say, the whole genre was a real "happy accident" for me as a kid.
738  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: New NIS announcements - Battle Princess Arcadia and Fencer Fairy F for NA on: July 06, 2014, 10:54:54 PM
I have a review of Battle Princess of Arcadias forthcoming. 

That is awesome! I actually thought of you when I started playing it because it reminded me of my time with Sorcerer Hunters last summer (which you you turned my attention to).... Don't ask why it reminds me of SH. There is really no resemblance barring the anime aesthetic.

I bought it, but I haven't played too much of it because I find it incredibly difficult.

Defend... Defend a lot. In fact just get used to defending THEN attacking. That approach has changed this from "tear my hair out" to "oh, I get it now!"- LoL

That is what I meant by totally not how I would typically approach gameplay in a title like this. I expected to just mash out flashy sword combos that tore stuff up at warp nine with the fluidity of chinese monk doing water sports. NOT the case here. Defensive methodical play is a must. I actually have to tip my hat to NIS for making a title like this play and feel like this.

Then again, I too am not far. I may change my tune. Time will tell.
739  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: New NIS announcements - Battle Princess Arcadia and Fencer Fairy F for NA on: July 06, 2014, 08:12:41 PM
I'm double posting because my last post was well over a week ago and thus an "edit" seems improper.

I gave some more time to Battle Princess and I feel a bit warmer toward the title. In a mindless "90's fantasy anime" sort of way, the tone is very satisfying if your in the mood for that.

As for the mechanics, they are growing on me too. You really can't approach this game like you would a typical side-scrolling rpg-lite hack and slash. Once I figured that out, things began to feel MUCH better.

Is anyone else playing/enjoying (or even hating) this by chance or am I the lone princess here?
740  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 06, 2014, 08:06:30 PM
If you mean SH1, the bad ending's the canonical one.

Yep that is why I phrased it like I did. I hope the REAL ending (even if it is coined as the "bad" ending) is better than the one I got.... I'm surprised I got it to be honest. I wasn't trying and didn't read any guides or faqs, but it just seemed intuitive as to when there were missables and optional efforts could be made to see different outcomes. I wish more games made the "secrets" and optional stuff more accessible in this way. Some games damn near require you to read/spoil stuff to achieve things.
741  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 06, 2014, 06:54:26 PM
Beat Shadow Hearts last night!!!

For such an amazing narrative, the ending was TERRIBLE! Apparaently, I got the "good ending" so its my hopes that the "bad ending" was actually interesting... gonna check it out sometime tonight.

After seeing everyone's mistwalker advice I'm beginning to think such an undertaking really is a fools errand right now. Gaming like its my job to get through something that isn't a must play after my recent playthroughs may prove too much. I just played FFIV, Child of Light, Atelier E&L and Shadow Hearts back to back. Thinking I could squeeze in Lost Odyssey before Tales of Xillia 2 comes out next month MIGHT be a bad move.... I just never really considered not having a big RPG going but I do have Drakengard 3, the rest of Terranigma and Battle Princess of Arcadia I could devote my time to before Xillia next month.

Jeese as I typed that I began to really feel foolish.... I always over-fill my plate in a manner of speaking, and I really don't want to feel inundated when Tales comes out.

Regardless though, thanks to the communities fine advice Lost Odyssey is certainly going on the "to play" list even if I don't get to it immediately.
742  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 04, 2014, 10:26:54 PM
Vesperia's battle system was one of best gameplay progressions I have ever experienced in an RPG. Or at least in a Tales game...

It truly goes from outright clunky to combo-tastically-slick by the end. This made me truly feel there was a far greater relevance to becoming stronger than simply seeing bigger numbers. Most Tales games pull this off, but Vesperia nailed it for me.

After pouring over your suggestions and seeing (for years) all this talk of the "dream segments" it appears LO is probably gonna be my next move. BD deinately looks to be more up my alley, but I sort of feel like I know exactly what to expect from BD (which by no means seems bad) but LO certainly has me far more curious. Playing and enjoying BD won't quell my curiosity in any way really and in truth either title looks like I can't go wrong.

But I'm getting ahead of myself...

Presently enjoying end-game Shadow Hearts. Now THIS is some wonky narrative folks. I really like the explanation of what "God" is, discussed with the inclusion of his precise distance from earth! LoL
743  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 04, 2014, 06:53:34 AM
Klyde just do what I do:

1. Buy everything.
2. Play each of it for like five hours.
3. Get a cold that lasts for a month and forget everything that happened prior to it, so you don't have to feel guilty when you never play the games/call your parents again.

Also there's a bunch of yew bushes by my bus stop at work and I think yews are really terrible smelling and they bring back unpleasant memories of both being in middle school and working as a custodian at my old middle school, cause the building was SURROUNDED with the things. That was a non-sequitur.

More relevant though, Blue Dragon has the worst boss battle music in the history of anything.

Anyway, did another two missions with Franklin in GTAV. It's swung from disturbing back to charming. with a brief detour into oh my god did the Ballas become a zombie horde.

Wevz, planning on doing nothing but Vesperia tomorrow since all the stores are gonna be closed and Columbus is a ghost town on the 4th.

I like your suggestions sir! Well minus the cold... I always feel like crap without being sick as is.

I've had the same experience as Andrew. Mistwalker just hasn't hit the mark for me.
I've played three Mistwalker titles, and I was disappointed by all of them.

Blue Dragon was fine, but largely forgettable. It's hard to pick out much that was particularly good or bad about it. I felt it was just sort of "meh."

Lost Odyssey had brilliant story-telling, but the battles (and the game as a whole) is SO SLOW. It travels at a snail's pace, which I personally found pretty hard to enjoy. If you have no problems with that, then you'll likely enjoy it! I remember it being quite hard too, though I might be misremembering that.

The Last Story. Well... my review: http://www.rpgfan.com/reviews/The_Last_Story/index.html

Thanks for the quick response you guys! If I do choose blue dragon, what is this I hear about a difficulty patch? Should I be concerned with it? I like hard, but not frustrating-tear-your-hair-our hard.

As for Lost Odyssey being slow, I don't mind slow so long as I'm occupied. In other words, long battle animations will bore me whereas a battle that simple requires quite a few turns will hold my attention just fine. Lots of reading is great so long as the dialogue is relevant. I feel like after playing Persona 2 IS and EP back to back I have the patience for just about anything turn based in light of a good narrative.

As for Last Story, I sold off my Wii U so that is out of the question for the time being.

The alternative plan of something amidst the myriad of shorter titles I want to get to and "saving mistwalker for a rainy day" is starting to sound better after your guys responses. LoL. Something about that breath of fire dragon quarter is mighty intriguing...
744  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: July 04, 2014, 05:03:05 AM
I just want to say out-loud here first that I LOVE dices review format posts here in the journal.

Next I want to say I'm having a mistwalker break-down! LoL

I'm about to finish Shadow Hearts ( I think) so the next title to pluck from the shelf need be considered. I never played either Blue Dragon or Lost Odyssey and while both may be shooting myself in the foot considering Xillia is coming next month, I can't help but be pretty enticed. The alternative option to either is maybe just focusing on polishing off a few non-rpgs I've picked up and possibly (finally) giving Breath of Fire Dragon Quarter a shot. I've been waiting a long time to try a Mistwalker title though, and considering the amount of new stuff coming this fall I think it best I get to either or.

Blue Dragon seems way more tailored to my personal taste in terms of aesthetics but it seems most I've read leads me to believe Lost Odyssey is a way better experience. I know little about either. What I do know...

-I'm in the mood for a traditional epic RPG and both seem to fit the bill.
- I love how bright and vibrant Blue Dragon appears to be but the fact that people say the story sucks scares me.
- I'm enticed by that fact that I've read Lost Odyssey reminds them of Final Fantasy. One quote a quick search turned up within the forum here was "LO reminds me of the FF6 sequel I wanted since FF7 was announced". That is a bold and grand statement that severely pulls me in the Odyssey direction.
- I know Blue Dragon has an overworld map. I like this.
- I know Blue Dragon has a class system. I like this.
- I know nothing else of Lost Odyssey at all.

So if anyone has any words of wisdom they care to offer, I'm all ears.
745  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: New "Secret Of Mana" for home consoles on the way on: July 01, 2014, 03:22:23 AM

While Secret hasn't aged as well as other classic SuperNES era RPGs, it still 'is' a classic SuperNES era RPG. It's basically that stepping stone between FFs IV and V plus games like DQV, and FFVI plus games like Chrono Trigger and DQVI. Also, despite the issues that plagued it's implementation, its probably got one of the best implemented FF2 style 'use to level' systems this side of the PS2 era (though it still had issues thanks to dumb crap like the Girl and Sprite's weapon levels rising half as fast as the Boy's despite the fact that they also had to focus on raising their spell levels), and the multiplayer aspect wouldn't see a match till the PS2/GameCube era (at least in terms of having an FF style JRPG with actual multiplayer interaction).

And while I'm here:

FFA was actually very good for its time considering that it even predated the game that Link's Awakening was built off of, For Whom the Frog Bell Tolls. That said, its plot is totally an 80s anime and a lot of its assets came from the FF games before it.

SD3 was probably the last good game in the series, but its also the one that every game since has borrowed the most from (while pretty much ignoring SDs 1 & 2). It's also less of an upgrade from Secret and more of a sidegrade by switching out the FF2 'use to level' system for classes and three marginally alternate campaigns and not doing much else.

Legend was an amazing, half broken, piece of crap. Unfortunately, in spite of it's amazingness, the game's still ultimately a half broken piece of crap. Its also where everything that wasn't derived from SD3 was derived from. It's also a product of the Summer of Square (which also gave us Chrono Cross and Threads of Fate) which wasn't too bad since the game quality was overall good when taken on the whole, but it was also the start of Square's (later Squeenix's) love affair with compilations.

Sword somehow managed to take in parts of the entire series up to its release (including remaking the first game), and still coming up with something that felt incredibly shallow and half-assed. It says a lot when you have the plot of a GameBoy game fly almost completely off the rails due to over-characterization and simply saying more than they actually had to say.

Then the entire World of Mana compilation was complete garbage. Full Stop.

And then there was Dawn (which while technically also part of the World compilation, was also its own entity and what the World compilation was building up too) which was a janky action platformer that made Kingdom Hearts 1 look good by comparison. It was also a game that was almost entirely about designers at Squeenix running around and shouting "Look at us! We're using the Havok Physics engine like all the westerners use.".

There's also Circle and Rise, the former being yet another Japan only CCG, and the latter is something I have yet to hear the verdict on.

That was excellent and accurate summary of Mana Aeolus. Albeit, appropriately cynical in its tone... that made "LoL"

Reading your summary made me realize just how badly I need to re-experience LoM and someday FFA for the hell of it.

I will however disagree subtly and say that I feel Dawn does have a leg up on Kingdom Hearts 1 in terms of art direction at least. I HATE the KH original character designs. At least Dawn pulled off something I could deem as "pretty" to look at.

Last year I replayed SoM2 (Secret of Mana) and SD3 and had a ball. Terrible mechanics but the magic has NOT been lost to the ages for me. And those soundtracks, good golly are they epic.

746  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: New "Secret Of Mana" for home consoles on the way on: June 30, 2014, 10:40:48 PM
Ok.. I'm willing to fall victim to overtly idealistic hope that an epic home console Mana title will (someday) come. Its nice to have hope. Even if it proves false! LoL
747  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: June 30, 2014, 04:38:29 AM
Just checked out the first 5 eps of The Future Diary this weekend.

Thought it was gonna suck at first when I saw the cliche tool of a main character... Boy was I wrong. It only took the first five episodes to safely say I'm hooked.

Finished Mushi-shi Season 2, good but not quite as good as first season, Yowapeda is simply amazing! Unrealistic but amazing none the less. On a whim I started The iDOLM@STER and Bodacious Space Pirates, so far pirates are winning....

Mushishi was funny for me. While my memories of the series specifics faded in the years after I saw it, the feeling and mood it conveyed remained fresh in my mind. I was really fond of how watching that made me feel. Intrigued with the supernatural and psychological nature of the series but completely hooked and drawn into the episodic mysteries by the tranquil nature it consistently  portrayed. It was like the perfect blend of what would happen if you mixed the twilight zone with some chinese folklore or something.
748  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Gust making a spiritual successor to Ar Tonelico: Ar no Surge on: June 28, 2014, 04:17:12 PM
Personally, I'd take Ar noSurge any day over Xillia 2 and Fairy Fencer F...and I'm still not entirely sold on it...

Blasphemy... LoL

Tales (particularly this generation) is why I remained on board as an enthusiastic fan of JRPGs. Xillia was a weak entry but I sort of expect Xillia 2 to be more of a narrative sequel (hopefully) proving more akin in design and appeal to other entries in the franchise.

Truthfully though, I haven't followed much on Ar Nosurge so I really have no frame of reference here. Outside of knowing aesthetically the game looks right in line with my personal tastes I'm more or less in the dark.
749  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: New NIS announcements - Battle Princess Arcadia and Fencer Fairy F for NA on: June 28, 2014, 04:06:15 PM
So bump, anyone actually looking forward to Fairy Fencer F? The world concept sounds interesting.....but Compile Hearts so I'm leaning towards not getting it. Any reason I should give it a second look?

I'm interested. Looks like Hyperdimension Nep with a few extra layers of "interesting" and "narrative" tacked on which is fine by me. There is enough coming in the fall where I imagine I'll most certainly be playing something else (Xillia 2) when FFF is released, providing ample time to see how well it is received before taking the plunge.

From a quick perusal of GameFUQs, I couldn't really find anything about BPofA beyond warnings about freezes and bugs, and that the game felt like a poor man's Dragon's Crown.

Then again, the game kinda dropped off my radar since its release, and not for lack of searching.

I picked this up this past week. I feel like calling it a poor mans odin sphere is more accurate. Which is SAD considering OS is an PS2 title. On the positive however, it does look pretty and OS was  awesome so anything that reminds me of it in any sense has to have some redeeming quality. The big departure (and what it does wrong) comes by way of the mechanics for me. Hacking and slashing just does not feel fluid and satisfying. It simply doesn't feel good to hit things in this title.

It is worth noting as well, I have not had any freezes or bugs for what thats worth.
750  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Gust making a spiritual successor to Ar Tonelico: Ar no Surge on: June 27, 2014, 07:10:49 PM

Really wondering with this European release in such close proximity to Fairy Fencer F in the US, if in fact the US release will be held off. No matter what the case its good news. This years releases were not terribly appealing to me as of yet, but come August with Xillia 2 then Fairy Fencer in september and now this I'm getting pretty freakin' excited. Tough choices will have to be made this fall.... tough choices indeed.
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