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Subject: 999 (Nintendo DS)
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31  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Project Phoenix (another Kickstarter!) on: August 10, 2013, 11:25:43 PM
Even without the chips, Ruffles sounds like a name you'd give a pet, not a fallen angel.  Then again, he is amnesiac, so perhaps that *is* his placeholder name until he gets his memory back. 

I got the impression that Ruffles is actually a she.  The developers refer to Ruffles as a her on their twitter account. 

I am hoping that it is indeed a placeholder name or that the player can change the name.  Aside from having another amnesiac protagonist, the project sounds interesting so far.   Incorporating RTS elements in the battle system could turn really good (i.e., Growlanser) or really bad (FFXII), depending on how it's implemented. 

EDIT:  Hey, the project has been launched:  http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1300298569/project-phoenix-japans-indie-rpg-feat-aaa-talent
32  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Kickstart PS1 style RPG, takes place over 3 decades. on: August 03, 2013, 10:26:31 AM
And with Kickstarter projects popping up left and right, there's plenty of weeds out there along with the flowers.  So even in terms of developer interviews and stuff, I'd at least wait till the project has been fully funded post-campaign so I'm not jumping the gun

Most gaming journalists think along similar lines.  This kind of perpetuates an unfortunate situation where only the crowd-funded games that have already met their goal get publicity and all of the promising projects that didn't make it remain overlooked.   I'm not saying I don't understand the reluctance to cover every half decent sounding Kickstarter game that comes along, but  it's a shame that I've seen some truly great looking projects get ignored.

Anyway, I backed Celestian Tales because the story concept sounds great.  I like that the developers seem to be steering away from a lot of the big fantasy and JRPG cliches; i.e., no whiny amnesiac chosen one kid with daddy issues.  Also, I just really like the idea of JRPG that emphasizes choice and consequence: the story will span three decades, so the six playable characters will age as the story progresses.  Ultimately the player's decisions affect how the characters grow up.    The developers said that if they don't reach their goal this time, they will try again (possibly with a lower goal / less physical reward options). 

Yeah I usually wait to see how the funding is going...I was going to back Liege, but completely forgot that it ended a couple days ago.

Well, remember if a KS project doesn't reach the goal, you're not charged so there's no harm in backing a "long shot" project that interests you.  Btw, the developer of Liege is still offering the option to back the game via Paypal. 
33  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: July 31, 2013, 02:35:40 PM
I'm hearing a lot of mixed things! Some impressions would be highly appreciated.

I'm really enjoying it.  The combat system is solid, there's just the right amount of character customization to make advancing your character interesting, the story of the main campaign is good.   

As far as I'm concerned, the only noteworthy cons are: 
 
  • The autosave only (checkpoint) save system.  This doesn't really bother me much personally but some people hate this so I mention it.  In a way it's a good
  • The official campiagn "Dead Man's Switch" is sort of short (about 12-13 hours) and very linear.  Only a few optional sidequests, and while you change influence how NPCs respond to you through conversation, don't expect any major C&C (i.e., there no multiple endings or divergent paths).  You'll also probably find it a bit too easy even on "very hard" setting if you're an experienced gamer.  However, you can make it substantially harder by taking less runners with you

Now I realize that those cons may be a dealbreaker for some, but I would argue this game is absolutely worth 20 bucks.  Because the game includes an editor, which gives Shadowrun Returns the potential for unlimited replay-ability.  Think of the Neverwinter Nights toolset, only  in Shadowrun's Universe.  Even the very linear official campaign is probably worth playing through a couple of times because of the many different ways to customize your character.   Because high level Kickstarter backers got early editor access, there's already several user generated campaigns available through Steam workshop.  I haven't really played them yet because I'm still on my second playthrough of Dead Man's Switch, but I hear they're pretty good.  And obviously many more will follow. 

All in all it's an awesome game, which can only get better as players create more adventures and as HBS patches it and eventually releases the Berlin DLC expansion.  Many of the people who are critical of this game seem to have unrealistic expectations: if you compare this to an AAA title, then yeah you may find the graphics subpar, the official campaign short, etc.  But for a $20 indie game, it's just phenomenal.  For what it's worth the professional reviews are averaging around 8/10.   When the Berlin expansion adds to it with some additional features it could be a 9/10. 
34  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Any good RPGs in a non-medieval pseudo European setting? on: June 07, 2013, 10:42:59 AM
It's not that I don't like RPGs with the traditional fantasy medieval pseudo-European setting, but lately I've been hungering for more RPGs that take place in a different setting.   I'm particularly interested in PC RPGs, but I also have a PS3, 3DS, and PSP so I welcome any suggestions for any of those platforms.  Especially looking for turn-based combat or real-time w/ pause as I'm generally bored with action RPGs and not interested in MMOs.  I like RPGs with you know role-playing: lots of dialogue, deep stories, meaningful choices and not just endless battles.  I figure there have to be some indie RPGs out there that have some unconventional settings.  

Any good sci-fi RPGs out there?  Of course I know about the wildly popular series like Mass Effect and Deus Ex (which are arguably really action games with RPG elements).  I love Fallout 1&2  (tried 3 but couldn't really get into it).  I'm looking forward to Wasteland 2 and Shadowrun Returns (which is cyberpunk + fantasy).  Anyway, overall it seems like Sci-Fi RPGs are pretty rare.  

I'd also be very interested in more fantasy RPGs that don't take place in a medieval European-based setting.  I'm backing a game on Kickstarter called Unrest that takes place in a fantasy version of Ancient India and emphasizes choice over combat.

Any East-Asia inspired RPGs?  Only games that comes to mind are Suikoden and Jade Empire.     Any Samurai inspired RPGs?   I know there's a good number of strategy games based in feudal Japan, but not really any RPGs.  

Anything based on any other historical / geographical location?  
35  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: RPGs where you don't save the world? on: May 28, 2013, 11:25:08 PM
Shadowrun Returns-   It's not out yet (expected late June) but the main story will focus on investigating the murder of your childhood friend.  You're basically playing a criminal (shadowrunner).  And same goes for the Shadowrun games on SNES and SEGA GENESIS (which are two completely different games). 

Deus Ex: Human Revolution-  You play as an ex-cop who now works as a security expert for a corporation that develops cybernetic implants.   

Fallout 1 & 2-   You're not really trying to save the world... Maybe just the other survivors, but you have the option of being a total selfish creep if you want.

Planescape: Torment

The Witcher 1 & 2 (Probably stating the obvious since you mentioned CDProjekt in the OP, but still worth mentioning). 

Arguably Baldur's Gate 1 & 2 and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic if you play an evil aligned character.  You're obligated to kill a few very dangerous villains at some points but you can absolutely play these games as someone who wants to rule / destroy the world rather than save it.   
36  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: May 09, 2013, 10:52:35 AM
I sadly never got to play the original even though it was on Genesis and I think SNES. I wanted to though as I think it had graphic adventure elements and that is my fave genre of game. The one that came out a few years ago was a straight up FPS, this looks different again. Does it have graphic adventure elements again?

Well, the SEGA Genesis and SNES Shadowrun versions are actually two completely different games.  The Genesis version was (sort of) an open world RPG.  There was a story but most of the gameplay is actually spent completing random runs to get enough nuyen (money) and karma (exp) so that you are strong enough to advance in the main storyline.  The were also a SEGA / MEGA CD Shadowrun which unfortunately never left Japan (apparently some people are working on a fan translation). The SNES version was a more linear RPG, but had many of the adventure game elements you were talking about.

Shadowrun Returns is different, but it definitely will take inspiration from both of the 16-bit games (it even takes place in between both games; 4 years after the SNES game and 4 years before the Genesis game).  You don't need to play those games before this one, but there will be references to them.  On Steam the genres listed for the game are actually "Adventure, RPG, & Strategy".  The combat will be a turn-based tactical system (very similar to the combat in X-Com: Enemy Unknown w/ cover).  And you will of course be able to upgrade your character with cyberware, new weapons, or magic spells.  Outside of combat, there will be lots of conversations with multiple options, many of which take into account your character's stats such as Charisma and Ettiquette w/ various factions). Very often there will be multiple ways to complete a missions such as acquiring a disguise or using stealth to sneak past guards,  intimidating or bluffing your way past the guards, or simply taking them down with brute force.  And Deckers can hack into the security system to disable alarms / cameras, open locked doors, etc. The main storyline will involve investigating the murder of your childhood friend, which is probably where the adventure game aspect really comes in.  They've mentioned in the alpha video that often there will be objects in the environment that you use (such as a computer terminal to get information). 

But what really makes the game for me is that it is going to include a game editor (similar to the toolset for Neverwinter Nights) that will allow players to make their own adventures.  So we can expect a wide range of player generated campaigns; probably ranging from very combat heavy missions to more role-playing / adventure oriented campaigns with little or no combat.   (If it's anything like NWN, there will be some awful stuff, but also some really incredible stuff that may even be better than the official campaign).

Edit:  They just posted an update showing lots of portraits and how the first page of the character generation screen will look:  http://harebrained-schemes.com/post/chris-dev-diary-characters/
37  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: May 07, 2013, 10:48:29 AM
I pre-ordered it from HBS when it was 25% off, just before the offer expired. I didn't back the Kickstarter, since I mistakenly got the impression from somewhere that it was going to be mostly about combat, but the gameplay video convinced me otherwise - I didn't expect there to be non-combat areas, dialogue trees and skill checks, which are all positives.

Yeah, I think they added a lot of things that they originally didn't think they would be able to... In the KS their funding goal was only $400K and they ended up getting almost 5 times that much.  So they were able to make a better game as a result.   (Like the Matrix segment which they said originally wasn't going to be possible).  I'm hoping this game does well so that we can get many future updates and expansions.  The Berlin campaign is already planned to be the next expansion but there's so many other cities and locations that have a lot of Shadowrun lore behind them. 

The game editor should allow for lots of great player made content too.  I think the biggest shortcoming will be that there probably won't many wilderness tilesets released the base game.  It's probably going to be strictly urban environments but maybe they'll even surprise us with some trees and stuff. 
38  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: May 01, 2013, 11:21:38 AM
Am I a terrible person for thinking I'll just buy it when it Steam sales at 50% eventually?
I just know it will...

Well, I'm sure there will be bigger sales but that may not happen for awhile.  If I hadn't backed it, I'd pre-order because I can't wait to play it.  And since some backers are getting early access to the editor, there's going to be a few player-made campaigns available on (or soon after) launch. 
39  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dragon's Crown (Vanillaware RPG, now 2013 all regions) announced for PS3/Vita on: May 01, 2013, 10:33:58 AM
^NES Mega Man box art is awful.

It ain't pretty, but at least Mega Man doesn't look like he's going to fall over from having ridiculously huge biceps / pecs. 

Anyway, does anyone know if the NA version is gonna come with an artbook or not?

As far as I can tell there isn't any pre-order bonus with this game. 
40  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: April 30, 2013, 11:10:41 PM
I was thinking about this game today. I definitely going to pick it up.

SRR is now up on Steam for pre-purchase.  It is currently at 10% off the launch price. 

Sounds like they're still on target for June.  I'm so excited!
41  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dragon's Crown (Vanillaware RPG, now 2013 all regions) announced for PS3/Vita on: April 30, 2013, 11:06:34 PM
I'm not sure if the character designs of this game are necessarily sexist.  But they're awful.   I don't need characters to look 100% realistic (Growlanser is one of my favorite RPG series after all) so it's not like I just hate all anime styled characters.  IMO The female and male characters in DC just look ridiculous and off-putting.

I'm sure the game might be alright otherwise, if you like side-scrolling brawlers.  However, from what I gather so far it sounds like Code of Princess without a story. 
42  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: April 29, 2013, 06:49:38 PM
HBS recently posted a sneak peak of how the Matrix will be implemented in the game:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6UZNfXWwn2I


The video is brief and doesn't have any sound, but it still looks amazing, especially considering HBS originally stated that they thought an elaborate Matrix mini-game wouldn't be possible given their limited budget and development time. Although, they stated that missions featuring the Matrix will be rare in the Seattle campaign, players will also be able to design their own Matrix runs for others to play using the game editor.
43  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Torment: Tides of Numenera Kickstarter launched (Now funded) on: April 09, 2013, 09:27:16 AM
I want to know who these people are that have +$10K to drop on the funding of a video game. What the hell?

No kidding!  After following quite a few KS campaigns, it's become abundantly clear there are some rather wealthy (or crazy) people out there who really LOVE video games.   It certainly seems crazy or frivolous, but there are far more ridiculous things to spend money on (buying luxury / sports cars, for instance).  At least they're helping to make a bigger / better game possible and some of the rewards are pretty damn cool if 10K is a drop in the bucket to you.  I would have loved to play a tabletop game with one of the Shadowrun creators. 
44  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Shadowrun Returns on: April 08, 2013, 12:18:02 PM
Only about a month or two until the tentative release date!  I hope it's not delayed but I'd rather have them put out a polished game than release something that seems buggy and unfinished. 

The lead game artist did an update a couple weeks ago that explains how the game editor will work for anyone who is interested:  http://harebrained-schemes.com/post/mikes-dev-diary-art/
45  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Should I replay FFX or wait for the remake? on: March 26, 2013, 09:40:00 AM
I don't think it should even be referred to as a remake.  "Remake" implies it was rebuilt from the ground up, with significant alterations or enhancements.  It is a HD port; still essentially the same game with minor graphical tweaks, so it can support higher resolutions.  However, I have read it will be the "International version" which contains 9 new optional bosses, a few other changes, and an extended epilogue (which you can watch on youtube).  Assuming that is accurate it's up to you to decide it it's worth paying for when you already own the game.

Personally, I liked the game overall (despite finding Tidus incredibly stupid and irritating protagonist and hating the whole blitzball thing), but don't have a strong urge to play it again.  Of course, I hail from the "Final Fantasy is highly overrated camp".  FFX is the only FF game I've tried that I've actually played to completion.  But it's so linear I just don't know why I'd want to play through it again.  Since it is supposed to have the international content, I may pick it up once I can get a dirt cheap used copy. 
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