Nocturne also had lots of random battles but I think I didn't get tired of them because of the dark mood the game creates, so even if it has less plot time, it helps.
Strange Journey has some issues that I hate the most in Dragon Quest games.
I have to agree with you CDFN , I don't know how much patience I have left for this.
I was never to use cheats in RPG, but some games seems like they ask for it. Not because they are unbeatable of something, far from it, but to be enjoyable.