August 24, 2005
Ahoy, loyal readers.
Man, you can really tell this is the slow period for gaming. There isn't much going on as far as releases go. But this is always a good time of year to play some older gems, and that's exactly what I'm doing. Morrowind has captured my soul once again. You think taking two characters all the way through would be enough, but it isn't. :P
I'm also still overdosing on World of Warcraft. I can't get enough of it. If you happen to play on the Shadowsong server, send Alisandre a tell sometime...or better yet, send her money; engineering is expensive. :P
To the letters.
|Machines are taking all over.|
I have a few quick questions for you =)
Are there currently any PS2 mech-based RPGs or strategy games other
Xenosaga and Front Mission available in the US?
If not, which non-Square Enix RPG would you recommend to someone who
wants something similar to Xenogears?
What is your favorite non-Square Enix RPG on PS2?
What is your favorite GBA RPG (if you have one)?
Thank You!!! =)
The only other mech-based game I can think of would be an older game called Ring of Red. It was released fairly early in the PS2's life cycle, so it might be a little hard to come by these days. It's worth the effort, though. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I encourage you to go read Alan's review, as we seem to agree on pretty much everything. It's hard, though. Consider yourself warned. :P
My favorite non-Square RPG? Well, I have to split this up, because I can't bring myself to choose between these two games. My favorite action-oriented game on the system is easily Dark Cloud 2. As far as I'm concerned, it's a masterpiece. The story could have been stronger, but it can't be beaten as far as pure fun goes.
If you've been paying any attention to the last few updates, you know that there's one traditional RPG that has captured my heart: Digital Devil Saga. I can't praise that game enough.
And my favorite GBA RPG? That's easy enough: Golden Sun. I enjoyed every single second of those games. Riviera is pretty good, too.
|You really want some of the worst remakes known to man? :P
What is going on with the Ys series for the US?
I though Taito or Konami bought the US rights to the entire series.
The best RPG series in my opinion.
Will we see any more Ys games on US Shores for the PS2 or PS3?
I think RPGs are extremely popular right now and more so when the original Ys games
were released. Now's the time for them to start giving the US what they want...More
More or less I want to know if we(United States) will every see an English version
of YS IV: A New Theory; and perhaps remakes of the previous games.
Okay, here's the deal.
Taito made two remakes of older Ys games: Ys III and Ys IV. Falcom didn't have a whole lot of involvement (if indeed they had any) in the creation of these remakes. And from the accounts I've heard, their lack of involvement is evident. One of our import savvy reviewers always brings up how horrible they are whenever they are mentioned, and he apparently isn't alone. If memory serves, Famitsu gave both remakes distinctly average scores.
Konami bought the rights to Ys VI, but I don't have a clue if those rights included the rest of the series. It would be nice, as Oath in Felghana DESPERATELY needs to be released here by someone. It's a fantastic game; I just wish I could understand it. :P
With this recent merger between Square Enix and Taito, it raises the possibility that the Taito remakes could be released here by Square. That could be interesting. :P
|Ah, the beauty of simplicity.
I've given it a lot of thought, based on RPG's that I just find to have good
storylines... and most people find to have good storylines. Philosophical
discussion, motivation behind the catalysts of certain events and so forth are
popular discussion among the RPG with a more complex plot -- but giving it a lot
of thought, whether it's truly good or not, does it come together without a
While on the gameplay front, it fell somewhat, Suikoden III had a storyline
that wasn't particularly convoluted or overly complicated, and could be summed
up pretty easily. Yet, it was on this very front that it was so successful.
The motivations were understandable, the events easy to relate to, and the
entire thing came together without much debatable glue, with the main cast of
characters ranging from fascinating to simply endearing, and they never seemed
On the other side of the spectrum, we have Chrono Cross. It's enthralling,
it's enticing, it's fascinating, and it's also highly subjective. The whole plot
comes off as a great deal more intriguing than the one in the forementioned
Suikoden III, but it had a habit of being vague and confusing at many points.
The point I'm trying to make is...
Maybe it doesn't always need to be really convoluted. Maybe it doesn't need
to pose a large amount of philosophical implications and deep meanings behind
everything that happens -- maybe, it's just as good a technique for it to be
understandable without having a ludicrous amount of obscure references to
semisolutions for the questions posed.
Does a game's plot need to be like Xenogears or Chrono Cross(both rather
acclaimed in that area) to be a great plot? Or, as long as it isn't simply
poorly-written, is it enough for it to be simple, effective, and understandable?.
There's certainly a time and a place for RPGs that have gargantuan plots. Xenogears will hold a place in my heart forever because of its mixture of plot, characters, and gameplay. However, just because I enjoyed that game doesn't mean I want every RPG I play to be just like it. Sometimes you've just gotta play something simple.
I think this is why I enjoyed Final Fantasy X so much. Yeah, the plot was pretty simplistic even by Final Fantasy standards, but it was enjoyable for the gameplay and the characters. Oddly enough, this is pretty much the polar opposite of the Xenosaga series. The plot is wonderfully thick, but the weak characters found within don't carry the plot well. I'm sure they COULD become strong characters, but there's still so much mystery surrounding each of them that it's hard to appreciate who they are.
This is why I play so many action games these days: when I play a game, I usually want to get AWAY from deep thinking. I'm not saying a want a plot spoon-fed to me, but at the same time I don't want to have to diagram it to make sense of things. :P
Well, I've got a date with an Ashenvale raid. Send in some letters so I'll have something to do when I'm not in Azeroth. :P
~ Daniel Stringer (email@example.com)