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Subject: 999 (Nintendo DS)
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Author Topic: A game with memorable storyline and characters  (Read 5192 times)
MeshGearFox
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« Reply #30 on: July 01, 2010, 08:51:36 PM »

Grandia 2 had these bits where you did nothing but talked to NPCs and it got really annoying because they wouldn't fucking shut up and the writing was bad. I stopped when I got to some town that was like, dying because nobody could eat, and you have to get involved in this long conversation with the priest, then the mayor, then like, Mareg or something. And that's after a long conversation with some random family. And it's long and non-interactive and involves no choices or decisions from the player.

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but almost every graphic adventure has at least one of "those" kinds of puzzles, right?

Yes, and that's why the genre's mostly shit and only exists as a vestigial husk of its early/mid-90s glory days.

I think the issue I have with most of the 90s-era graphical adventure games is that they tended to have this issue where they both tried to be funny and serious at the same time and did a really bad job of it. That was the vibe I got from the little bit of the first Broken Sword game I played. I played The Longest Journey further, but... same issue. And the attempts at jokes were... really, really unfunny there, mostly relying on comedy tropes that had already been exhausted a decade before. Which was annoying because the serious parts actually seemed good but, hey, no, we have to have random lesbians giving lengthy monologues on their sex lives, or idiotic maintenance workers, or a puzzle involving a detective in a bathroom stall because Rated M for Mature CLEARLY means potty humor. The insipid puzzle designs didn't help much either.

Also there's the whole walking clusterfuck known as Roberta Williams. Every game she designed was basically and exercise in figuring how much meth she was on when she came up with it. King's Quest 5 is pretty much the pinnacle of bad puzzle design. Most of the other KQ's weren't much better, with the exception of 6, which was mostly Jane Jensen's doing. I'd have a hard time saying the Space Quest games were much better, although the earlier ones have the excuse of being really early examples of the genre. About the only series to come out of Sierra that I liked was Quest for Glory, which were more RPGish, generally more consistent in tone (They HAD comedy, only it was actually funny and wasn't nearly as distracting), and most of the puzzles in those games had like 30 solutions so even if one of them was really obscure you probably wouldn't get stuck forever.

For the record I don't hate adventure games at all. I just think Sierra was by and large complete trash and that TLJ was really overrated. LucasArts generally put out games I liked. Like, I adore Monkey Island, because those were intended to be funny and generally actually were. And I'm a huge Myst fan and never found the puzzles overly obtuse (Except for the FUCKING GODDAMN FIREFLIES in Uru god fuck that fireflies fucking fuckshit) since they generally were solvable via the scientific method and observation (also only the first game was scant on story content. The rest were this... you know, house of leaves is a pretty good comparison. Especially Uru. Uru was great except for the FUCKING FIREFLIES. It's highly meta-fictional, with this theme about the relation between an author and their work/the reader and the work, or this can even be expanded to work with gaming and not just books, and there's this huge family drama. It's pretty epic).

Also Planescape and Ultima 7 being for all intents and purpose adventure games, despite the RPG elements.

I tend to prefer mechanical and character based puzzles to strictly inventory based ones. The problem with most inventory based graphical adventures is that you have poor feedback. Text adventures actually got around this by giving you a huge arsenal of verbs. In a graphical adventure you tend to have... well, KQ7 is a good example.

At one point you need to tie a rope to a rock. This isn't exactly intuitive for a number of reasons (The end result is that you set up a barricade to trip a jackalope or something). The problem is that KQ7 only had one action -- use. So, using the rope on the rock. What is that supposed to do? Are you throwing the rope at the rock? Smacking the rock with the rope till it cracks open and reveals delicious candy? Lassoing the rock away from some hole? The interface never really makes it clear WHAT the actual result of your intended action will be. Curse of Monkey Island was actually a lot better about this. Despite having a single use command, it'd change the interface text contextually.

Also you tend to need robust fail response. If you try to use X on Y but that wouldn't work, you need to be told WHY that wouldn't work to accomplish what you were trying to do. Again, text adventures were generally better about this for some reason.

If a graphical adventure IS inventory driven, I think it's better if they offer the player a smaller number of items with multiple, changing, and perhaps emergent uses. Like, Zelda and Metroid games (which aren't strictly adventure games but you get the drift). I think Zack and Wicky for the wii was supposed to be like that too.

I think some of the more open-ended -- in terms of solving things. Not in terms of gameworld -- RPGs tend to make better adventure games than adventure games do. Or, really, most games that incorporate adventure game elements. Deus Ex comes to mind, just since I've been playing it recently.

(Additionally in terms of Sierra I actually liked the Shivers games. Shut up).

(Fucking fireflies).
« Last Edit: July 01, 2010, 08:57:05 PM by MeshGearFox » Logged

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Sagacious-T
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« Reply #31 on: July 01, 2010, 09:49:51 PM »

There is no such thing as JRPG. JRPGs from this point forward will be known as "Japanese Turn Based Adventure Games"

Long live the RPG
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Scar
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« Reply #32 on: July 01, 2010, 10:21:50 PM »

I ll play Persona. But I have a question: Do I have to play Persona 1 to be able to understand Persona 2 and 3...?

And Dincrest, if Suidoken has great song (admitting you have a good taste), this is enough reason for to make of Suidoken played by me very soon.

OFF - Thoren, you like FFXII or not? you say its the worst but youve put the almost feminine face of Vaan in your picture. (by the way, how do I place my own picture?)
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MeshGearFox
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« Reply #33 on: July 01, 2010, 10:33:54 PM »

No, Persona 1 actively rewires your brain to be unable to understand future installments of the series. It's pretty impressive technology but sort of unethical which is why it's almost impossible to find original PSX copies of the game in these modern times. Most were destroyed by the FBI.
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Scar
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« Reply #34 on: July 01, 2010, 10:49:15 PM »

No, Persona 1 actively rewires your brain to be unable to understand future installments of the series. It's pretty impressive technology but sort of unethical which is why it's almost impossible to find original PSX copies of the game in these modern times. Most were destroyed by the FBI.

well its not necessary to play Final Fantasy 7 to understand Final Fantasy 8...
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Starmongoose
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« Reply #35 on: July 01, 2010, 10:58:41 PM »

I played Persona 2 first, so no, you don't need to play Persona 1 to understand the next one. The only two related story wise is Persona 2:Innocent Sin and Persona 2: Eternal Punishment.
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badsanta
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« Reply #36 on: July 01, 2010, 11:40:59 PM »

I played Persona 2 first, so no, you don't need to play Persona 1 to understand the next one. The only two related story wise is Persona 2:Innocent Sin and Persona 2: Eternal Punishment.

Sort of. Playing Persona 1 first does make you appreciate 2 (more-so EP,) a bit more, since certain things from it, (such as the primary antagonist,) show up again by the end of it. But no, you don't really need to play 1 first unless you want to.
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Dincrest
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« Reply #37 on: July 02, 2010, 07:41:20 AM »

Persona 2 (both) does have the P1 cast as adults making appearances as non-player characters and occasionally player characters.  Is having played the predecessor a requirement?  No, but it's kinda like how Phantasy Star 4 works fine as a standalone game, but having played 1-3 can make you look at scenes in 4 and feel like, "Dude!  I was THERE when that happened!"

Persona 3 is its own entity.  Sure it has references to other MegaTen titles, but they're mostly just non sequiturs.  Persona 4 is a standalone game as well, though some characters from 3 make brief cameos. 

As for whether I have taste, my soundtrack and game reviews should tell you whether my tastes align with yours.
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Kos-mos
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« Reply #38 on: July 03, 2010, 03:41:17 PM »

Kos-Mos- You're welcome.  And, yes, Fox mentions one of the annoying puzzles but almost every graphic adventure has at least one of "those" kinds of puzzles, right?  Other graphic adventures I thought had great storylines and characters are Grim Fandango (Glottis rules!) and The Longest Journey (April Ryan is a fantastic protagonist).  Dreamfall (the sequel to The Longest Journey) had a stellar storyline as well, but some of the gameplay elements were clunky.  In terms of Japanese graphic adventures, EVE: Burst Error had a really twisted, character-driven storyline; I also really liked Phantom of Inferno.  I'm a love adventure fan, though not everyone's into that sort of thing (i.e. Memories Off).  My personal favorite love adventure was Hourglass of Summer.  The premise was a little hokey, but the tale itself was neat and I liked the characters.  

I should probably try The Longest Journey someday as it comes up often while watching out for the stuff Fox mentions.  And while graphic adventures are a bit off topic it does give me the excuse to list Snatcher since it's pretty much a graphic adventure minus the occasional action segment that could be done with a controller or light gun, loved that game and it's characters and story but that's going further off topic :)

Scar, while it is technically true that Xenosaga has some controversy over how good it is especially around the first game being so cutscene heavy (which was still what I wanted and great for the story and character IMO) and the various issues surrounding the second game so I can understand some apprehension there, the original Xenogears is more universally loved or respected for the most part and would almost definitely be worth checking out for the story, characters, and game if you don't have issues with going back to PS1 old-looking games.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2010, 03:49:01 PM by Kos-mos » Logged
Raze
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« Reply #39 on: July 03, 2010, 06:33:10 PM »

 I'd never played a game with so much win and so much Zzzz all in one package as The Longest Journey. The start is filled with boring characters talking on and on about more boring characters and none of them have anything to do with the rest of the game. Then when the real plot starts to happen you're overloaded with too much information at once. I wouldn't say it's too much to follow, but by not easing you into things slowly and just going on and on it'll make you want to take a nap afterwords.

Then the game gets really, really good, with a few roadbumps.

 As for shitty puzzles that come with the genre, fuck 'em and use gamefaqs before they become frustrating if you can't solve them and just enjoy the story. I think the genre would be better going the Japanese route and just dropping forced puzzles in favor for more interaction. With that said, Monkey Island doesn't need to be a dating sim :P

One last random thing to add, a bug to watch out for. Don't combine the rope with anything if you don't plan on doing anything with it and save first before you do. The bug is if you combine things in the wrong order you won't solve the puzzle even when you do what you're supposed to and you'll be stuck. I had to restart, which thanks to the fast forward option wasn't near as bad as I thought it'd be, but it was still a pain.
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xellos2099
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« Reply #40 on: July 03, 2010, 09:20:21 PM »

Jade from Tales of Abyss is a walking pillar of awesomeness and the story is pretty good too. 
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MeshGearFox
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« Reply #41 on: July 03, 2010, 11:42:03 PM »

Was Jade the chick or the necromancer?
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badsanta
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« Reply #42 on: July 03, 2010, 11:54:28 PM »

Was Jade the chick or the necromancer?

Jade was the necromancer. You know, the sarcastic one?
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Dice
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« Reply #43 on: July 04, 2010, 03:29:33 AM »

Yeah; Abyss immedietely came to mind when I saw this topic.  No character was really too detestable unless you're weird and vendetta-y(?).
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« Reply #44 on: July 04, 2010, 07:39:05 AM »

Quote from: Dincrest
Persona 3 is its own entity. Sure it has references to other MegaTen titles, but they're mostly just non sequiturs.

persona 3 also has references to both persona 1 and 2, as in that news show that has interviews with people supposedly had a "20 year-old man in a yellow hat" was probably referring to mark.
and more obviously than that, hermit social link revolves around "innocent sin online" and characters named maya and tatsuya.
or were those references that you though were mostly just non sequiturs?
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