I thought that the battle system of Xenosaga II was quite good as in that it did require planning your moves ahead. However that just went overboard way too easily, since you might need to use 10 turns just preparing a single attack against a mob. Not even a boss, but a normal encounter. And that is with using the system correctly, there is no way around it. There is no way you can execute a damaging combo without stock, boost and maybe even a buff or two. You may need to switch out a party member too, since not everyone can do certain breaking attacs. The mech battles were a bit simpler, thankfully.
As for FF VIII, I too am rather surprised that there were people who didn't get the junction system. I mean, whether it is a viable idea or not doesn't really matter, but it certainly couldn't be that hard to understand. You socket magic in the empty space next to your stats and the stat gets a boost. The stats you can junction depend on if the GFs your character have equipped have the skill for it. There are systems which require a math degree to understand them, but certainly this is not one of them.
Anyway, I finally beat Hyperdimension Neptunia's true final boss. This was the first time I had to check out my equips in the entire game and after a few failures, I just set the difficulty on hard and beat it in three turns. That's right, the boss is impossible on easy or normal, but on hard it was total cheese, because this system works in some really alien ways. Easy should mean longer battles but safe damage, but on hard you get huge damage boosts yourself. It's just that this boss will oneshot your party on easy anyway, so might just as well play glass cannon style. What a weird game.
Now after some succesful backlog clearing, I think I'm going to start that damn Suikoden 3 at last.