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Subject: 999 (Nintendo DS)
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Author Topic: The Atelier Series  (Read 1025 times)
raisel
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« Reply #45 on: March 30, 2014, 10:26:49 PM »

And for the record, I do certainly feel that if Ar Tonelico were dubbed "Atelier Tonelico" no one would have questioned it.

I would.

They're very different games as far as I'm concerned.

Considering Atelier games are generally a light-hearted journey through a fantasy world that is heavier on the side of magic than on technology that doesn't have a goal that unites all of the playable characters beyond mere friendship or hiring for protection, and that Ar tonelico and Surge Concerto are character-centric stories taking place in a world that leans heavily to the science fiction side that do have party of characters with a common goal, I can only agree with Kevadu here.

This also carries off to the difference in focus of the battle systems in both:

- Ar tonelico/Surge Concerto: Protect a party member until she can unleash death upon the enemies with her songs.
- Atelier: Craft the items with the best properties you can and use them to defeat your enemies
« Last Edit: March 30, 2014, 10:30:33 PM by raisel » Logged

Ma ki ga exec aulla ganna dand oz ee ciel. mAtyAy aje lyuma/.
N waw W an-pu kiu-wa-fen-ne miriu-du ahih=yeta-a;
QuelI-> { EXwI[cez]->{ic-p ciel}->{ic-b ciol};}->ExeC->{DW};
Mickeymac92
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« Reply #46 on: March 30, 2014, 10:29:16 PM »

I remember once a friend of mine billed Atelier Rorona as a game that "every fan of RPGs should play", and to this day I still don't know what he's talking about. To me at least, Rorona represents the opposite of what I usually look for in an RPG (Adventure, often grand stories, etc), and in fact I can't help but feel that calling it an RPG is somewhat of a misnomer, as I think it feels more like a task-based game with an RPG tacked on. At the very least it's not something I would think every RPG player would find appealing...
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Dice
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« Reply #47 on: March 30, 2014, 10:32:02 PM »

I'd love the next Atelier Trilogy to hit more on RPG elements again (like Iris did).

I kinda liked the emphasis on story since I'm not terribly convinced the plot is really what draws me into the last two series' (but I guess that could lead into a great debate about how important a "big plot" is to the games you play to begin with).
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Cyril
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« Reply #48 on: March 30, 2014, 10:45:21 PM »

Atelier's in a bit of an odd place right now, I think.

When I said in my post about Escha and Logy that they attempted to merge styles, I mean it literally, beyond the more obvious more lenient time limits(4 months instead of 3) and easier tasks.  You start the game off more traditional, but once you finish your Assignments you're given an entire year of open, free time to do whatever you like, just like Totori. 

They're under pressure to evolve the series to keep people buying their games, but in doing so, while also expanding the fanbase, they're going to have to change something fundamental and, like Iris, it's bound to upset someone.
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Kevadu
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« Reply #49 on: March 30, 2014, 11:16:19 PM »

Iris, Iris, Iris.  You guys can't shut up about Iris ;)

I enjoyed Iris well enough for what it was but I felt like it had a bit of an identity crisis.  I actually liked the game more when it was about Klein trying to save Lita's life.  Then towards the end of the game there was this convoluted twist and it just so happened that the thing they had to do to save Lita's life would also save the world or something.  I mean, what?  I'm not inherently against save-the-world plots but in this case it felt completely tacked-on.  Like they couldn't decided if the game was supposed to be an epic adventure or something more character focused.  Saving your girl's life seemed like enough of a goal to me...I'd like to see more games with a premise like that.  It seems like it's either got to be epic world-saving adventurers or just puttering around doing very little...

Going back to gameplay changes, my favorite of the PS3 Atelier games is probably Meruru.  Not for its characters or story which are honestly pretty forgettable but for the gameplay.  City development was a third tier added to the usual adventuring and alchemy mix and it complemented them perfectly.  It made the alchemy goals feel more meaningful to me since you would make things they needed for development, which in turn unlocked new areas, which let you gather new materials and explore new recipes, etc. etc.  It felt perfectly balanced to me and was addictive as heck.  I kind of wish Gust had continued exploring that direction more because it felt like one of the most significant additions to the franchise to me.
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Dice
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« Reply #50 on: March 30, 2014, 11:28:56 PM »

Iris, Iris, Iris.  You guys can't shut up about Iris ;)

I enjoyed Iris well enough for what it was but I felt like it had a bit of an identity crisis.  I actually liked the game more when it was about Klein trying to save Lita's life.  Then towards the end of the game there was this convoluted twist and it just so happened that the thing they had to do to save Lita's life would also save the world or something.  I mean, what?  I'm not inherently against save-the-world plots but in this case it felt completely tacked-on.  Like they couldn't decided if the game was supposed to be an epic adventure or something more character focused.  Saving your girl's life seemed like enough of a goal to me...I'd like to see more games with a premise like that.  It seems like it's either got to be epic world-saving adventurers or just puttering around doing very little...

Going back to gameplay changes, my favorite of the PS3 Atelier games is probably Meruru.  Not for its characters or story which are honestly pretty forgettable but for the gameplay.  City development was a third tier added to the usual adventuring and alchemy mix and it complemented them perfectly.  It made the alchemy goals feel more meaningful to me since you would make things they needed for development, which in turn unlocked new areas, which let you gather new materials and explore new recipes, etc. etc.  It felt perfectly balanced to me and was addictive as heck.  I kind of wish Gust had continued exploring that direction more because it felt like one of the most significant additions to the franchise to me.

Between you and Cyril's response, I tried to craft my thoughts on it carefully because the gameplay is such a shift between the trilogies. And I definitely don't want to impede on the traditional Atelier style.

I agree 1000%, Iris is...a solid 7/10 (at best).  It's more that I just preferred its style to be more RPG-like and less emphasis on time and tasking (which I personally handle poorly).  I probably shouldn't have mentioned Iris' plot, my bad, because it's really...run of the mill "find Atlantis" stuff (save the part where you're saving Lita).

I think half my problem is that I don't feel like the plots, whether going for the BIG SAVE THE WORLD story or the more character-driven plots (save sister, save your town, find your mom, etc.), are that well developed no matter the scale they work in.  Maybe I just hate the writing of these games.  Tales games have pretty crummy and by-the-numbers "save the world" stories, but (and I think many would agree) the character development tends to almost prioritize and out-shine the main plot itself.  Atelier makes me feel like I get weak anime drones talking about their daily problems in a no more interesting way than it's been done before in slice of life shows.  The drama isn't particularly involving and stays light-hearted or tame with respect to how events seem to pan out.

tl;dr: I think what I'm saying is I just wish the games had stronger scenarios.
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Klyde Chroma
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« Reply #51 on: March 31, 2014, 02:28:39 PM »

  Atelier makes me feel like I get weak anime drones talking about their daily problems in a no more interesting way than it's been done before in slice of life shows.  The drama isn't particularly involving and stays light-hearted or tame with respect to how events seem to pan out.

tl;dr: I think what I'm saying is I just wish the games had stronger scenarios.

LoL

That is well put! And accurate to boot... I actually feel the same way about slice of life shows as I do Atelier games. I could generally care less until I turn em on and get sucked in. The advantage of the Atelier games over slice of life anime is addictive gameplay and that is pretty much it for me. Your general assessment of the plots and writing stands as pretty on point if you ask me.

And for the record, I do certainly feel that if Ar Tonelico were dubbed "Atelier Tonelico" no one would have questioned it.

I would.

They're very different games as far as I'm concerned.

My point wasn't so much that they are extremely similar games, but games with extremely similar flavors. When taken into consideration that the Atelier franchise reboots every few games with new gimmicks, gameplay et cetera.... I can easily swallow Ar Tonelico as a extension of that franchise.

I'm certainly not arguing that Ar Ton is "the same" but from my vantage point, if Tactics and Crystal Chronicles could acceptably bear the "Final Fantasy" name, Ar Ton could reasonably pass as an Atelier spin-off if marketed as such. And to someone whom was unfamiliar with Atelier games from the Ps2 era I could easily see how that forgivable misconception could be made.

I suppose what I am saying is, in the land of the JRPG, I think developers more or less agreed long ago you need not look like your brother, talk like your sister, smell like your dad or walk like your mother to be part of the family.... all you really need is to own a chocobo. Know what I mean?? LoL

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Zendervai
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« Reply #52 on: March 31, 2014, 03:23:49 PM »

Yeah, you're right. The average JRPG series is more an anthology than anything.
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Tintaglia
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« Reply #53 on: April 07, 2014, 01:47:38 PM »

I think of Atelier as the perfect summer series. Short-term goals and silly chit-chat is about how much my brain can handle in the hottest time of the year. There's enough time for saving the world during the grim winter months.
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