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Subject: 999 (Nintendo DS)
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Author Topic: Final Parties and Boss Battles  (Read 4439 times)
Akira
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jonnybfbi
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« on: June 22, 2009, 11:53:11 AM »

So I've been rocking Arc Rise Fantasia for a while and one thing that really stands out is the frequency with which party members come and go. So far there have been twelve usable characters, and every couple of hours someone comes, someone else goes, then the mysterious old guy turns evil, then the annoying little girl becomes good, then the childhood friend tries to kill you, and yada yada yada (those aren't spoilers...maybe). It's a bit disorienting because I'm not sure how invested I want to get into any one character since I'm not sure who will be around in the end.

The other thing I've noticed is the immense gap in difficulty between regular battles in dungeons and boss fights. Regular encounters last a few seconds and are cake while boss fights are FUCKING EPIC. Even if you grind like a champion, boss fights always seem to come right down to the wire. The last dungeon's boss didn't even have a save point before him and he killed all of my guys in one hit. I had to go all the way back and just fucking figure out a way tactically to beat him (it took forty minutes but I nailed his ass)

So what are your thoughts on final parties and boss to standard enemy difficulty ration?

IMHO...

I like games with a rotating cast, but it has to make sense. Final Fantasy IV was one of the first games that I thought did it well. In ARF they remove some of the anxiety by keeping every character at a minimum level (party members who don't fight still get experience) which I actually don't like. I prefer being able to keep hated characters like Cait Sith at level 10 where they belong.

For the boss fight issue, I have no complaints. Very few JRPG's have hard boss fights these days, though I do like to have a save point or two in the dungeon. I think the whole "LOL, YOU FAIL IT, START ALL OVER AGAIN FROM THE BEGINNING" is better reserved for bonus dungeons like in Star Ocean. It's a sort of gambler's challenge that I don't particularly enjoy.
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daschrier
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« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2009, 12:10:16 PM »

I really don't like when characters come and go.

AT2 did this and it annoyed me to no end.

I do like boss battles that have some challenge, but if they are too much of a pain in the ass I'll put the game away and play something else.

Many RPG's tend to have the final boss that constantly heals and can damage all of your party members in one hit.
Unless the story is good enough where I want to see the ending, I'll move on to something else.
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Dincrest
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« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2009, 12:18:45 PM »

If characters come and go, at least let them come back with levels and equipment on par with those of my main hero.  I have a hard time believing that a party member who leaves the party hasn't changed an iota since leaving. 

That's one thing Black Sigil does right.  There are characters who come and go (for good reason), but whenever they join the entourage, their levels and equipment are on par with main hero's.  And though you can only have 3 in a battle party, everyone in the entourage gets full EXP. 

Basically, allow conveniences so I don't have to grind. 

As far as boss difficulty goes, if I did not run from a single battle in the dungeon, I should be able to kill the boss.  And then comes the classic argument of challenging vs. cheap.  The only time a boss should completely obliterate me in one fell swoop is when the plot dictates that I am supposed to be defeated. 
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daschrier
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« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2009, 12:41:14 PM »

I think the worst offense in boss battles is the point of no return.

I'm sure several people were screwed by Final Fantasy Tactics by that certain boss battle that was a huge pita. I know I was.
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« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2009, 01:08:29 PM »

I loved Eternal Sonata's way of losing and gaining characters.

Hard boss battles are why I still play RPGs,


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Lard
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« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2009, 01:30:30 PM »

I loved Eternal Sonata's way of losing and gaining characters

That's like the only good thing about the game.
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Wild Armor
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« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2009, 02:10:01 PM »

RE to Boss battles: Yeah there should be a save point at least near the floor he/she/it resides? I'm sorry to hear that about Arc, especiall since I wanted to play the game :(.

RE Parties: I frankly don't care what happens as long as I get one at the end. You know what? I just lied. Like Dincrest said, when they leave and make a return, they sure as heck be at a decent level or near the main hero's level, not at level one or 20. If that happens, then they really are no use to me unless I grind, and I don't level grind because I don't have time to do that.

I think the worst offense in boss battles is the point of no return.

I'm sure several people were screwed by Final Fantasy Tactics by that certain boss battle that was a huge pita. I know I was.

So much truth in that. I remember my first run I was barely getting by each mission, but then came missions with continous battles...fogeddabout it.

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« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2009, 03:13:26 PM »

I hate the fact that no matter how many times I play it, my party in the Suikodens for the finale always ends up being the same just due to how much better certain characters are.
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Gen Eric Gui
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« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2009, 04:11:05 PM »

I hate the fact that no matter how many times I play it, my party in the Suikodens for the finale always ends up being the same just due to how much better certain characters are.

The only one where that tends to happen is Suikoden 3, where 4/6 members are pretty much spoken for in your final team.  The others may discourage the use of a chunk of the cast, but there's usually a good selection of "uber" characters to choose from, assuming you got all 108.  2 and 4 in particular are pretty good about making sure you can use pretty much whoever you want, with 5 doing a pretty bang-up job as well.
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« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2009, 05:12:25 PM »

I hate the fact that no matter how many times I play it, my party in the Suikodens for the finale always ends up being the same just due to how much better certain characters are.

The only one where that tends to happen is Suikoden 3, where 4/6 members are pretty much spoken for in your final team.  The others may discourage the use of a chunk of the cast, but there's usually a good selection of "uber" characters to choose from, assuming you got all 108.  2 and 4 in particular are pretty good about making sure you can use pretty much whoever you want, with 5 doing a pretty bang-up job as well.

Suikoden 1 is the same way. You're forced to use Viktor and Flik so much in that game, there's no point in not taking them even when they're optional. And then I always end up with Cleo, Pahn and Kirkis too, for some reason.

I prefer games with a lot of party members, even if some are temporary, because I like the variety. I also like segments where I'm forced to use certain characters, because otherwise I will pick my group of favorites and stick with them. Because certain temporary characters are usually awesome anyway, it's fun to use them, even if its for a short amount of time. Final Fantasy IX was cool for me, in this regard, as you get a fair amount of temporary party members who still remain interesting.

Conversely, it sucks having temporary party members in a game where you have a comparatively small amount of permanent members, especially if you have an otherwise static party, because when they're gone you lose the variety permanently.

And I prefer boss fights that are difficult enough that I'll either die a few times or have a tough fight, but when they get too difficult, I tend to quit the game, so I don't like them too difficult. This is why I haven't finished Legend of Legaia, Eternal Sonata or Mother 3 yet.
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Robert Boyd
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« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2009, 05:35:09 PM »

As far as changing parties go, games like FF4 (and to an even greater extent, its sequel FF4: After Years) are fine because it adds a lot of variety to the gameplay  & you don't invest seriously in any character.  DQ7 did it the worst; spend dozens of hours gaining job levels only to lose characters.
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« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2009, 05:53:29 PM »

Personally, I like FF6s approach where characters go separate and form multipul parties, and then come back together later. We haven't seen much of that lately, and I miss it.
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« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2009, 06:29:32 PM »

I prefer having characters leaving/joining the party all the time than being forced to use certain party combos (especially in games where unused characters don't level!). 

Bosses should be harder than the normal enemies but not to the point you have to completely dominate recent enemies just to have a fighting chance against a boss.
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« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2009, 08:37:40 PM »

Personally, I like FF6s approach where characters go separate and form multipul parties, and then come back together later. We haven't seen much of that lately, and I miss it.

Seconded.

As for the boss fights I like them with a little meat so long as they don't pull shit like that one boss in Xenosaga 1.

For those of you who don't know what I'm talking about....

Code:
Around the 3/4ths mark you run into a story boss that forces you to bring two specific characters who may or may not have seen much in the way of grinding. But better still is the fact that both of these characters must deliver the FINISHING BLOW the boss in question as anybody else will just rez the guy back up to a certain percentage of it's health (somewhere around 50%). Even better is the fact that while both of these characters can use mechs in this battle, should they deliver the killing blow while in said mechs IT DOESN'T COUNT!!! Oh and the boss possess a counterattack that can easily bitchslap your entire party, mech or not.
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« Reply #14 on: June 22, 2009, 09:00:22 PM »

Quote
DQ7 did it the worst; spend dozens of hours gaining job levels only to lose characters.

From what I remember Kiefer is the only character that permanently leaves your party, and that's way before the job system opens up.
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