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Topic: Atlus Fan Club

Posts 1,201 to 1,220 of 1,221

SilverEdge92

@Ralizah Honestly I consider Apocalypse to be the absolute nadir of the series. @Alex90 hit the nail square on the head in the comment they left on the SJ review: yes, gameplay-wise it is the most well-polished, mechanically sound entry in the franchise to date (and I say that grudgingly because I will never stop being salty over how hard they nerfed Chakra Pots and the like, and Smirking not having the evasion boost it does in IV thereby making it less valuable defensively), but in terms of the narrative, it's a typical shounen anime where literally everyone, Asahi and gang included, is a manipulative dongle and one that's littered with plot holes and contradictions to things established in IV.

SilverEdge92

Nintendo Network ID: SilverEdge92

Ralizah

@SilverEdge92 Smirking NEEDED to be nerfed. It was OP, and bosses like Minotaur could smirkroll even a well-prepared team if they managed to get a critical hit on one of your characters. I also like how it could be both induced and removed more deliberately, and how it's used when activating certain skills. It feels like a properly fleshed out game mechanic in Apocalypse.

Anyway, the change to atmosphere and presentation is obviously a massive change for the series, and one I've gone back and forth on. While I really do like the creepy minimalism of games like Nocturne and SMT IV, I also liked having a cast of characters I actually cared about. I think how much you enjoy it, like Xenoblade Chronicles 2, which saw a similar change in style, will depend on how much you enjoy the anime tropes it employs. The aspects contradicting IV's lore didn't bother me much, as it was clearly a sort of alternate history take on IV's neutral route. While grounded in IV's lore, it becomes its own sort of beast. I liked how characters had motivations that weren't purely ideological in nature, and how they didn't fall into easy "order/chaos/etc." categories.

I think a lot of my tolerance for this change comes from the fact that I feel like the eerie minimalism of previous games just doesn't sit as well in modern SMT games that are devoid of Kaneko's utterly evocative character art.

I can see why a fan of other SMT games would recoil from the changes made to Apocalypse. It might feel like an utter betrayal of the unique identity and feel that this series has established over the years. And, you know, I'm not going to say that I don't miss that unique SMT feel that's distinctly missing from this entry. But in terms of user-friendliness, polish, dungeon design (sans the final dungeon; who thought that was good work?!), music, AI (no "Walter using Agi on the Minotaur" moments in this game), and overall fun factor, I've not played anything else in the series that even comes close to this.

My one major criticism would be that I don't care for the Undertale-esque dual endings in this game. The game leans VERY heavily into the "Bonds" ending, and I don't feel like the other ending is really consistent with the game's narrative arc. It just feels like a compromise, like Atlus figured it was unthinkable for mainline SMT not to have multiple endings. But, like in Undertale, you're just a complete monster in the other ending, and it's just not terribly compelling, given you have no real reason to act this way. For all intents and purposes, the Bonds ending is the canon ending, and I actually prefer the game to just give me a single ending and be done with it.

Anyway, I wouldn't mind if SMT V mixes a more classic SMT structure with the refinements and general level of polish found in IV: Apocalypse.

Edited on by Ralizah

Ralizah

CanisWolfred

Ralizah wrote:

I think how much you enjoy it, like Xenoblade Chronicles 2, which saw a similar change in style, will depend on how much you enjoy the anime tropes it employs.

Uh-oh, now you're sounding alarm bells...I wasn't worried before, now I'm thinking I should've done more research into the story before I bought it...

I am the Wolf...Red
Backloggery | DeviantArt
Wolfrun

3DS Friend Code: 1418-6849-7569 | Nintendo Network ID: CanisWolfred

SilverEdge92

@Ralizah I don't think Smirking was OP at all, though that it might considered so is perhaps more a symptom of the more general balancing issues that IV unfortunately suffers from. The Magaon skill is definitely a welcome addition as a means of dealing with bosses Smirking since most are immune, or at least highly resistant, to Ailments, and I imagine the final boss would be borderline unbeatable without it. The Smirking bonus effects were a neat idea, but I wish there was a wider variety of them; hopefully that's something that will be expanded on in V.

I guess I'm just at that age or getting to the point where I'm becoming less tolerant of tropes being thrown in for their own sake or simply for mass-market appeal if they don't add to the narrative in a significant way, especially in a series that's been so successful and managed to craft a unique identity for itself without them--the prime example being the Asahi-Toki-Nanashi love triangle. So Toki's affection is meant to be a hint toward and effect of her being under Innana's influence, that's fine; but what's Asahi's excuse, especially when she is, for all intents and purposes, Nanashi's own sister? And the Digital Devil Saga and Devil Survivor duologies do a good job, I think, of having the bonds between comrades as a theme without invoking all that silly "power of friendship" nonsense (though DeSu 2 perhaps toes that line a little more dangerously than the others).

"A compromise" is probably the most apt description of the Bonds/Massacre dichotomy. The Massacre ending is more tonally and thematically consistent with the rest of the series, achieved only after Nanashi has sacrificed literally everything, while Bonds involves no sacrifice, sense of loss, or equivalent exchange whatsoever and is just so damn saccharine that it feels like it exists solely for "teh feelz" and to be the golden storybook ending.

SilverEdge92

Nintendo Network ID: SilverEdge92

Ralizah

@CanisWolfred Nope. Two endings, Undertale-style.

Oh, and regarding the story, it's nothing too intolerably anime. It certainly doesn't ruin the wonderful gameplay, which is some of the best in an Atlus game to date.

Edited on by Ralizah

Ralizah

CanisWolfred

Ralizah wrote:

@CanisWolfred Nope. Two endings, Undertale-style.

Oh, and regarding the story, it's nothing too intolerably anime. It certainly doesn't ruin the wonderful gameplay, which is some of the best in an Atlus game to date.

Wait what??? Only two? Damn...that's a real bummer...I think I have to side SilverEdge, here, that really goes against the core tenants of Mainline SMT. They usually offer a middleground between the two extremes, although it can be the hardest path more often than not. Only offering two extremes, one of which sounds tonally dissonant, isn't a choice. It's got one ending, just like Undertale - I don't care what others have tried to tell me, Undertale only had one true ending, one in which so much of the story and gameplay was heavily geared towards. Just because you're given the option to undermine its story at every turn without a game over to stop you doesn't take away from that, I feel. The alternate endings seemed to do a better job of emphasizing that hurting people has consequences, while often offering significantly less gameplay, story, and character interactions...it's not a choice, there's no benefit, it's just an extended consequence.

So with that in mind, yeah, that ending situation does hurt a lot of its appeal for me. I'd rather play through SMT4 again, even with its problems.

Edited on by CanisWolfred

I am the Wolf...Red
Backloggery | DeviantArt
Wolfrun

3DS Friend Code: 1418-6849-7569 | Nintendo Network ID: CanisWolfred

Ralizah

@CanisWolfred I don't disagree. Like I said, the endings are my biggest problem with the game.

With that said, the rest of the game is wonderful. Much, much better than SMT IV in terms of the mechanics, dungeon design, difficulty progression, QOL features, etc.

Also, as I said in another thread, since I don't particularly care for playing games multiple times, I'd much prefer a game just go for one meaty story and ending as opposed to dividing content between different endings. That is, pretty much, the direction SMT IV: Apocalypse went, and I think it made for a more ultimately satisfying single play experience than with any previous SMT games.

Ralizah

xPH03N1Xx86

Speaking of SMT, I just got the email to join the closed beta of the mobile game!

And also, SMT IV A is currently my favourite SMT.

Meow. :3

3DS Friend Code: 1950-8691-6279 | Nintendo Network ID: xPH03N1Xx86

Ralizah

Etrian Odyssey Untold 1 and 2 are on sale on the eshop. $9.99 and $14.99, respectively. Great prices for anyone who hasn't picked them up yet.

@xPH03N1Xx86 I did too. Haven't played too much of it so far, though, as I use my phone for communication/work stuff, so I'm rarely running games on it.

Ralizah

samus1818

I just finished Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE. Overall, I like this game, but I felt as though I finished a marathon after getting to the end of that game LOL

Edited on by samus1818

samus1818

Kimyonaakuma

Shin Megami Tensei Liberation Dx2 (The SMT mobile game) is now available worldwide!

Kimyonaakuma

CanisWolfred

Kimyonaakuma wrote:

Shin Megami Tensei Liberation Dx2 (The SMT mobile game) is now available worldwide!

Good. Now I can continue to ignore its existance, like I have with every mobile game since 2012.

I am the Wolf...Red
Backloggery | DeviantArt
Wolfrun

3DS Friend Code: 1418-6849-7569 | Nintendo Network ID: CanisWolfred

Ralizah

@Spoony_Tech Honestly, with the change in hardware that's going to make the old style of gameplay impossible to accurately replicate, I hope they make massive changes to the series going forward.

Ralizah

Spoony_Tech

@Ralizah They can find a way. Captain Toad shouldn't work as well as it does yet it works. Same if they can get Mario Maker working well too. If I have to pause and use gyro to draw I can deal with that.

John 8:7 He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone.

MERG said:

If I was only ever able to have Monster Hunter and EO games in the future, I would be a happy man.

I'm memory of @Mr_Trill_281 (rip) 3-25-18

Switch Friend Code: SW-7353-2587-4117 | 3DS Friend Code: 3050-7580-4390 | Nintendo Network ID: SpoonyTech | Twitter:

SilverEdge92

Just beat Demiurge and finished my second playthrough of SJR and I don't know what to be more upset about: the hours spent grinding forma to get the gun with the Mourn Bullet skill for the Demiurge fight and I ended up not even needing the damn thing (I used the gun Seraph gives you after finishing his EX Mission), or how easy Mem Aleph was this time around with a few extra levels and higher-tiered demons.

My final team:
MC, LV. 83 (was LV. 76 at the end of my first run)
Demiurge, LV. 94
Seraph, LV. 90
Maria, LV. 81

SilverEdge92

Nintendo Network ID: SilverEdge92

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