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Topic: Discuss your favorite games

Posts 41 to 55 of 55

iKhan

I don't know if I've talked about why Tales of Symphonia is my favorite game of all time here. But even if I have I see no issue restating it.

Very few other games have simultaneously satisfied so many things I want in a game and with such perfect balance.

The basics for a JRPG: A fun combat system and a great story? Check
Endearing likable characters? Triple check
Fun dungeons with real puzzles? Check
Good overworld gameplay that is used to facilitate exploration without completely overwhelming the story progression? Check
A good crafting and customization system that doesn't take up hours long-play session? Check
Non-linearity that doesn't sacrifice story, but still produces a sense of agency? Check
Good art style and music? Yeah it has that too.

The only area I feel the game genuinely stumbles is it's presentation, which is forgiving for a low budget game from 2003. The game spurred my love of JRPGs, and honestly no other JRPG has balanced all those things so perfectly.

Currently Playing: Steamworld Heist, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, Tales of Graces F

kkslider5552000

I've not played Symphonia since it was new. I liked it a ton, but i have to say, even at the time, it was really easy to make fun of how cliched it was and how on-the-nose its themes could get. And I was like 13 at the time, so I can only imagine how I'd feel about some of this stuff nowadays. Honestly, I might like it MORE now because of that, at least ironically. But I haven't experienced it in any way since, so I can't say.

I was more of a Phantasia guy tbh, even with the somewhat disliked GBA version. That hit the perfect spot of SNES era JRPGs for me, which I tend to prefer to the shamelessly 2000s anime era stuff the other games are/seem to be. Though even all that said, I still liked Symphonia more than a lot of games. Like it more than all the 3DS JRPGs I tried, that's for sure.

Non-binary, demiguy, making LPs, still alive

Bioshock Infinite Let's Play!:
LeT's PlAy BIOSHOCK < Link to LP

iKhan

@kkslider5552000

Honestly I've gone back and forth on the cliche nature of it. On one hand, yeah, the themes aren't anything new. It neither offers a brand new allegory to modern problems that is particularly revealing, or breaks down a problem to its fundamental components. But on the other hand, after playing a lot of other JRPGs, Symphonia pulls off its themes so much better than so many others, and I appreciate that it at tries to tackle a more complex theme, and explore how it affects its characters (I think it actually does quite well in this regard). Plus, I really appreciate how the theme completely permeates the world of the game. I also don't necessarily think a story needs amazing themes to be good, sometimes it just takes good characters and interesting motives

For example, Xenoblade 2's themes are also super on-the-nose, but also don't make a whole lot of sense either. Frankly, I got to the end of the game, and I still don't know what's so "different" about Rex from all the other compassionate Drivers besides the fact that he's delusionally optimistic.

Edited on by iKhan

Currently Playing: Steamworld Heist, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, Tales of Graces F

kkslider5552000

Oh well that's all true. And I will say Symphonia genuinely surprised me at points (even if I would've probably seen them coming nowadays). But there's some stuff like the revelations with Kratos later on where even as a dumb "I will fall in love with Naruto unironically AFTER this" teen, I was like "we're doing this?" In general I remember enjoying the story more in the first half. Maybe having mysteries forced some level of subtlety into the writing or something.

But to be fair, Xenoblade 1 also has a few moments like that, and that's one of my favorites. Like that scene with Fiora and Shulk eating early on, really sucks. Like lame JRPG scene 101, and they might as well have said "gee I sure hope nothing bad happens in our hometown!" for how obvious it was. And the writing's on the nose near the end too. It's part of the genre, for better or worse.

Non-binary, demiguy, making LPs, still alive

Bioshock Infinite Let's Play!:
LeT's PlAy BIOSHOCK < Link to LP

Ralek85

@NightMiroir I'm 100% with you on Baten Kaitos. Basically it's the first thing I always ask for when Nintendo remasters anything. Hell, I even buy a simple re-release, remaster or not!

I really appreciate what Microsoft is doing in terms of backwards compability. It's pretty cool seeing games like Panzer Dragoon Orta running perfectly smooth in 4K on a XSX. The feature I'm currently most excited about next gen is Xbox's Auto-HDR feature. If it works out as advertised, any game will support a heat-mapped version of HDR based on Gears 5 HDR implementation: that includes not just X1 and 360 games, but also Original Xbox games. That's pretty amazing imho. If it turns really works as good as Digital Foundry says it works (from what they were showed), I'm very excited to replay a bunch of games, particularly Dead Space 1&2!

I also hope that Microsoft will get back to expanding the BWC support on Xbox once Series X has successfully launched. There are still tons of 360 and OG Xbox games that really demand support, like Mech Assault, Otogi und Gunvalkyrie. There's of course also a huge amount of even X1 games that will hopefully benefit hugely from this feature. Top of my list is probably Ace Combat 7.

Like I said before, I think it's pretty much peak Ace Combat, but the lack of HDR was the one thing really missing from the game. If Microsoft can pull this off, then I will gladly rebuy the game on Xbox Series X (have it on PS4 for PSVR). This goes for several games btw. I'm also excited for Resident Evil Remastered here. Still one of the best games as far as the use of light goes. HDR could be an incredible boon here.

I really hope Microsofts machine learning is up to the task!

Switch: 3355-6459-9982 | 3DS: 2809-7989-1816 | NNID: Ralek85

Anti-Matter

@NightMiroir
Oh, you do know about Project Diva games ?
Well...
To tell you if some of Hatsune Miku songs have been appeared on Dance Dance Revolution A and Dance Dance Revolution A20 as licensed songs.

So does with Toho Eurobeat songs, like this.

I have beat Cirno's Perfect Math Class in Challenge difficulty Lv 15 with score AA+ 97%. 😁

My Top 5 Music genre:
1. Super Eurobeat
2. Cyber Trance
3. Euro Trance
4. Hardcore Techno
5. Bubblegum / Eurodance

Switch Friend Code: SW-8364-7166-5608 | 3DS Friend Code: 2638-4872-0879 | Nintendo Network ID: TAGunderground

NotTelevision

@Ralek85 The soulsbourne games are also some of my favorites from recent years. I love the world design, creatures, and the level of devotion required to complete them. The only one I haven’t played was Demon Souls because I never had a PS3.

But I’m curious how long this formula will be interesting. I enjoyed Sekiro a lot and put it alongside Death Stranding as one of the best games of last year, but I hope the next game (Elden Ring) takes a bigger departure. With a series like Zelda or even Metroid, it seems like there isn’t as rigid a gameplay loop so there are more avenues they could explore. With the From Software games I think they might be painting themselves into a bit of a corner at this point. The fans want that increasing level of difficulty and huge boss battles, but I think they should try to diversify the next game more. There are only so many times you can observe boss patterns and push your skill levels higher through repetition, until you start feeling the bad kind of deja vu. Maybe some puzzles and some other kinds of gameplay could be incorporated to mix it up. I guess you can’t change that much without it becoming a totally different beast entirely, but Dark Souls and all the DLC will always be there when I want to go back to the more traditional experience.

I’m not claiming that the games need to be more “assessable” or whatever, but as some of the best developers around I’d like Miyazaki and company to use their creativity on making something that feels fresh.

NotTelevision

Ralek85

@NotTelevision I hear ya, but I gotta say I am kinda torn on this. I do think that there is quite the significant gap between Demon Souls (or Dark Soul, if you will, though if you can ever get your hand on a PS3 as a e.g. loan or something, it's not a game to be missed) and Sekiro.

I'm not sure about this, but at times I felt Sekiro was stretching this gap to the limits of what can readily be considered a Soulsborne game, as many things typical to Soulsborne were just flat-out absent (Multiplayer, sync as well as async for instance, but also pretty much any kind of customization/classes and almost all RPG elements as such). Not to mention the game's combat and pacing, with a more character driven and traditional story, that was not a complete yet also not a minor divergence from previous Souls games.

Since I'm currently playing Nioh 2 this has been in pretty sharp contrast, as Nioh goes all the way in the other direction, with full-on multiplayer and and whole another level of customization and RPG elements layers all-around. One could argue that the game has to many systems, with too much menu-driven customization going on. There is a level of complexity here, that I am not 100% certain serves the game in it's entirety. Still, it's something different once more, while still sitting reasonabily within what we commonly refer to - in my view - as a Soulsborne. Yet, it'S also strechting that term rather thin, as it also severly dilutes the formula, while altogether ignoring some pillars like Miyazaki's nagg for environmental storytelling, which I consider some of Souls most attractive feature - which also was oen of the aspects that really used to set a game like Demon Souls apart from the pack and left a lasting impression on me and I wager a great deal of others.

I loved Sekiro and I do really enjoy Nioh 2, so from that perspective alone, I'm not worried yet, but as you suggest the question of how long this will hold true (we are two generations into this by now, not counting King's Field), is definitely valid and has also been on my mind on occassion.

It's funny that you bring up Zelda, because I have commented several times before around here, that I would love to either see Zelda take somes cues from Dark Souls or for From Software to be allowed to straight up make a Zelda game. In that regard, my thoughts align pretty well with your thinking, even if I'm coming at this from a different direction.

Point being, that just as Zelda could be enrichted by some Souls-aspects, Souls could also be enrichted by some Zelda-aspects. In the end it does not really matter which one it is, that would be strictly speaking semantics. Particularly now, with BotW out in the world, it seems like a perfect time for something akin to a fusion of both genres, because that's pretty much was Zelda and Souls are by now. Not gonna lie, I still have hopes that BotW 2 will go in that direction. It is kinda far fetched, surely, and is basically only based on wishful thinking, the dark tone portrayed by the trailers and the more dungeon-crawler'esque surroundings shown so far, which lend itself to many traditional Soulsborne elements.

I'm definitely curious to see how Elden Ring will fare in this regard. I have to be straight here: I generally really don't like open-world games. There are a few exceptions like BotW, but anything veering even close to the Ubisoft-persuasion - one step closer than BotW - that is, is really not my cup of tea (anymore). Hell, I'd be lying if I'd say that I want Zelda to do the same thing all over again. I really enjoyed what BotW has brought to the table, but for me, those elements would have to be toned down for a sequel - or at least supportet by stronger mechanics, a deeper combat system, more involved stories, a much, much densere world, indeed some Souls-like challenge elements and such.

I think if anything From Software's issue is that it is overreliant on the Souls brand. I do think it is high time that we see some more of that long rumored Armored Core reboot of sorts (I loved the PSX games, the latter ones not so much though). I think Miyazaki has definitely more ... well, range than what he got opportunity to show so far. In other words, let's look at Death Stranding as an example here. It is unmistable a Kojima game, but after like two decades of being stuck with MGS, it more than just a breath of fresh air and one has to constantly wonder, where we could be with gaming if Kojima had been given the opportunity bei Konami much earlier to spread his wings. P.T. was more than promising, and speaking of Armored Core ... Zone of the Enders were great games in their own right and showed Kojima was more than the MGS-dude.

I do think that Sekiro was Miyazaki pushing out of that box already in a way and I feel Elden RIng will follow up on this. Why would go partner with GRRM if you were not doing a very straight forward narrative, albeit with the (for games unusal) sociological angle on story-telling. That is not something we have seen in Souls before and I'd be interesting to see how this goes together with an open-world to create a "Souls-like" game. I guess, what I am saying is that it is going to more complicated obviously than to "just" add in puzzles or platforming or something like that. Plus, to be quite frank, I expect more of Miyazaki. If he branches out, I fully expect him to either significantly expand the genre of the Soulsborne, much more than he has already of course, but to come up with something that does not neatly fit into any other existing genre as well. It's a high ask, for sure, but I would still not expect anything less.

I'd still play his take on Zelda as well though ... obviously! ^^ And I would love for Miyazaki to tackle something closer to jRPG, but not really. I'm once more thinking about Resonance of Fate then. It never really occured to me, but I imagine, if Miyazaki did like a turn-based jRPG, it would probably be something just like Resonance of Fate. Distinctly Japanse and an RPG, but little to nothing like any other "jRPG" out there A bunch of weird ideas that should clash or not work, and some who actually don't, but overall a wonderous thing to behold, precisely because it is it's own thing.

Anyways, all in all I'm pretty much (still - if you will) at the point where I am sold on any game because it is made by Miyazaki. That's a nice kinda of convenience and comfort to have. There are not many designers I can safely say that for, maybe Taro and Mikami as well, if for entirely different, partly contradictory reasons each. I hope Kojima, now that he his own master, will re-join those ranks, as he really, really, really had lost me with MGS 4 going forward. Death Stranding was a return to form in way I had not dared dream about, and he can make lighting strike twice, I'm definitely back on board with whatever weirdness he packs on a disc and calls a "videogame"

PS: Glad to hear someone else feeling really strongly about Death Stranding. I definitely agree about both, Sekiro and Death Stranding. To me there were easily not just among the best of last year, but of this entire gen.

Switch: 3355-6459-9982 | 3DS: 2809-7989-1816 | NNID: Ralek85

NightMiroir

@Anti-Matter yeah, I really like Project Diva ! A lot of vocaloid songs are actually more deep than some gave them credits for ! I actually am in awe of the performance shown on the videos you posted haha

@Ralek85 retro compatibility is such an amazing thing ! Except for the first Xbox, I didn't own any Microsoft plateform, but I remember when Nintendo did a thing like that with the wii, compatible with GameCube games, and the Wii U compatible with wii games. With what you told me, the BWC seems to be really cool: I did go on Xbox website to see what original Xbox games where there, and saw a lot of games I own and were really good ! It would sure be a shame to not expand this !

You like Resident Evil ? Did you play 7, and the remakes for 2 and 3 (this one came out, like, three days ago I think ?) ? I think you know it by now, but I didn't play any of them . 7 is beautiful but horror wise, I was more "scared" and "shocked" by the disgusting aspect (food, corpse etc) enhanced by the graphics, but the boss battles were good (to watch, maybe not to play ?). I liked 2 because LEON ! So cool ! And I was more familiar with the third person haha. Didn't watch 3 remastered at the moment

@NotTelevision I'm with you here, I would like something a little bit different with Elden Ring. It's not a "Dark Souls" game, they change the name so FromSoftware could change or twist the formula a little bit without vexing their oldest fan: they would be angry, I think, if "Dark Souls 4" was too much different. But Elden Ring ? They should change it, even a little ! Like you said, big impressive bosses, difficulty, dark environments are what we like in Dark Souls, and I would love a Dark Souls 4 (even if I find it hard to return to Dark Souls after the more nervous Sekiro haha)

What I want with Elden Ring is something else altogether: I want more exploration for sure, and some puzzles would be great, but with "Dark souls"elements. A dark theme game with obscure lore that I could discover with exploration and riddles, full towns too and quests... Well, trully, I want a Bloodborn or a Sekiro: a new approach of soulslike game, but I don't want "gothic Lovecraft horror" or "Japanese ninja samurai". I want "exploration fantasy rpg"

Edit: because @Ralek85 know how to explain it wayyyy better, I will just quote "Point being, that just as Zelda could be enrichted by some Souls-aspects, Souls could also be enrichted by some Zelda-aspects". In a nutshell, I mean this

Edited on by NightMiroir

NightMiroir

Switch Friend Code: SW-2301-2914-5039 | 3DS Friend Code: 4312-9902-0295 | My Nintendo: Sasuna

Ralek85

@NightMiroir Yap, they've done great work on BWC and since they look even further enhance older games on Series X, I sincerely hope that once that is underway, their dedicated BWC will get back to the rest of 360 and OG Xbox library for sure. It's neat that we get this kinda of Nintendo-BWC feature from Playstation as well as Xbox this gen around, from the start and pretty much for all games. Funny, how Nintendo is the only one who changed their architecture so drastically, that we have to rely on ports for WiiU games

As for RE. I absolutely adore RE, made Mikami one of my favourite designers for life. I'm still not sure where I stand on RE4 ... let's say it's complicated. As for RE2 Remake: It's brilliant, loved it and cannot recommend it enough. It's not only the best RE has been in long time (again, this would bring us back to RE4 bascially ^^), but really the best survival-horror has been in a long time. It might be my favourite RE game actually, together with the Remaster for the 1st one.

I have not played RE3 Remake, but I am kinda ichting to. I'll hold firm and wait for FF VII Remake though. If there is still time left in my vacation after that and if I am still in the mood for it, I'll go for it. It's pretty short from what I've heard and has not been quite as warmly welcomed as RE2R, so it's something I'm also okay with picking up during the obligatory Blackfriday sale later this year, if push comes to shove - at latest though! RE7 is a game I have not really played yet. I started out on PS4 playing VR, but ... dunno, it was good, but maybe too good? Not sure yet. I have to get back to it. I'm still not entirely clear of what to make of it, with the shift to 1st-person and all.

I think the aspect I appreciated most about RE, and also TEW in that regard, was the DIS-empowerment. The fixed camera, a technical necessity on PSX, actually played into this favourably as well as into the horror aspect. Anyways, this aspect of DIS-empowerment had started to drift away with RE4 and was GONE!!! with RE5 like ... that sh*tshow of a game (okay in co-op though) was bascially the polar opposite: a classic Powerfantasy of all things. RE2 Remake really brought back the DIS-empowerment angle big time. RE3 has always been firmly more in the Powerfantasy corner. Not to any degree like RE5 of course, far from it, but more of an action-oriented spin-off than a (mechanical) continuiation of RE2.

It's not as stark as with say, Parasite Eve, which in the turn of three games really shifted genres entirely, but still, it's noticeably in the context of RE3 -> 4 -> 5.

All in all I don't think RE2 Remake was that scary actually. Not trying to sound tough, but it was really more survival than horror. Actually, I always figured this for RE. RE was never Amnesia or anything like it. RE7 is a different beast though, based on my limited experience and in VR ... IN VR it's definitely often scary as f***. Don't play it in VR if you ever pick it for yourself. It's impressive, but ... it's scary for sure

PS: As for Dark Souls, Miyazaki pretty much said, that he was done with Dark Souls as such. So while he is obviously not done with the genre (see Sekiro), it's pretty clear to me that Elden Ring will stray significantly farther than Sekiro ever did. As I commented above, the involvement of GRRM also points toward a completely different approach to narrative on top of the open-world (which Souls technically was as well in it's own way, but not how the term is commonly used of course).

It's pretty much Soulsborne and Zelda that can get me to touch an open-world RPG these days (or "Death Stranding" for that matter, if we'd want to consider that a genre, which we probably should for lack of any other fitting frame of reference ^^).

Edited on by antdickens

Switch: 3355-6459-9982 | 3DS: 2809-7989-1816 | NNID: Ralek85

Ralek85

@NightMiroir I just wanted to come back once more and have Final Fantasy VII Remake added to my list of favourites, having finished it earlier today. It was not perfect, but for me, it got pretty darn close and much closer than I thought despite my hype levels already being pretty ... hype.

If you're interested, I can elaborate on what I worked for me, and the few things that didn't and why it's an instant favourite for me, but all-in-all, I just gotta say, the level of craftsmanship on display here was deeply impressive for like 90% of the time and it really screwed with my expectations in the best way possible:

  • It was a very ADULT game, with mostly very adult characters, tackling very adult subjects. It was humorous at times, sure, very humorous actually, also "kawaii", but only very rarely cheesy or cringeworty and while obviously part of it are rather tragic, throughout it felt incedibly charming and just ... just human. Like people you would definitely want to hang out with doing crazy adventure stuff and in the game ... well, in the game you can.
  • It's also worth noting, that the combat is excellent, very much turn-based, but for the life of me, I would not notice it for even a second playing or even watching the game. Also, incredibly I did not grind for even one single second in this supposed jRPG - not a single second! That is pretty much unheard of.
  • I'd also say in regards to the games charm, humor and humane feeling, huge props to the Englisch Voice Actors, who knocked it out of the park. Just ... like - even the few "cheesy" parts, mostly Hojo und Heidegger and also Barret a few times - were just a joy to listen to. Particularly Tifa and Aerith and also Jessie stand out: A waifu-trifecta in the best possible way, flirty and gorgeous yes, but also witty and with worlds of personality and charm at their disposal ... really good stuff, which made even the most boring parts of the game, like the sidequests, rather enjoyable.

On the point of adultness, I feel like this game reminded me alot of Lost Odyssey actually. It was not "somber" in the same way LO was, but it had the same kind of "adultness" to it in many ways. It had plenty of moral grey areas to boot, the characters had internal moral dilemmas they were struggling with, social inequality was a huge theme throughout, but also the way of life in a civilized word, the benefits vs costs ... It's something that sadly only very few jRPGs do, but what struck me about FFVII Remake was, that they probably really made this game for me, like an audience that is more likey to be 35 than 15 ... having being a teen when FFVII originaly launched, but having noew progressed into adulthood, while still playing videogames in their spare time.

This is not a game for children. It's not overly sexual or even pornographic or violent, but it's not targeted primarly at teenager sensibilities and tastes. Not to say that a teenager can't play or enjoy, sure can, it should work for anyone this side of say 12 or something, depending on the individual, but it's not targeted at them.

I really, really, really appreciated this. Most other games would have had me cringe when one of the game's three waifus were flirting with my character, but FFVII went about in such a witty and charming and endearing manner, that the whole rom-com vibe the game has going - which is utterly not my genre, anime or not, just for the record, like not at all - really worked for me and was not just non-offensive or non-cringeworthy, but actually one of the game's greatest assets next to combat and (mostly) really strong pacing and design.

Also worth noting is that the game is structured alot more like FFXII, which I hated, than most all other FF games I played. It's roughly 90% linear corridors. i did not mind any of that, in fact, after not being able to stomach FFXV time-wasting, boring, non-stop, FFVIIR was like a new lease on life for me for the franchise, if not the genre. This is important imho, because it shows, that the popular claim, that FFXII's issue was being a "corridor simulator" just misses the mark (and not just because of the three hubs and chapters were the game is a bit more open and non-linear for a short bit).

I hope the game does really well, and makes developers of jRPGs everywhere notice that there is an audience there for games like this. It does not all have to be cartoon'y and about little-boy-that-could (save the world from ancient evil while getting to see some anime boobies).

I would LOVE for this to be watershed moment for the industry. You know, that these types of game can find international success, outside of japan and a relatively small circle of niche western games. That if they are done right, if you spend the money and the time to provide a level of quality in all areas, with a strong thematic adherence and relateable, yet likeable characters, this can reach a global audience, but also a socially and demographically much diverse than it typically does/did. It does sound kinda hyperbolic, but I mean, if any game could do it, it gotta be FFVII ... right?

I do wonder where this series is going though. The game is like 6-8x as long as the previous Midgar section of the original. I doubt this sustainable for the entire game, but right it would seem that this might not be done with one trilogy.

Well, as it seems I already did kinda elaborate Anyways, given what we talked about the last weeks, I felt this was something I wanted to point out and share. Despite my few issues with the game, right here and now, I am willing and able to utterly embrace it. Again the swift pacing (none of this 20-hours-in-I-promise-things-pick-up-and-stuff-gets-good-b*s* that is so common in 9/10 jRPGs, even some I absolutely love, no endless grind, no battlesystem that is deep, but also comma-inducing to watch play-out) just works for the most, and it really maintains the core of what I consider a jRPG, with that satisfying combat and that strong charactere-driven, very emotional narrative, with a strong focus on themes throughout.

I think the biggest marks against the game are, that it could have been cut down to 25-30 hours easily without loosing much (get rid of the pointless sidequests and reduce some overlong sections) ... thus Square's claim, that this could not have been delivered in one package does not hold up quite, and also, the game's difficulty on normal is too low for experienced players, some more challenging should have been available RIGHT AWAY, not hidden behind a NG+.

Still, these gripes aside, I had a blast with it, some of the best 45'ish hours I spend on a game this generation, and that is saying alot, cheers!

Edited on by Eel

Switch: 3355-6459-9982 | 3DS: 2809-7989-1816 | NNID: Ralek85

NightMiroir

@Ralek85 Thank you for sharing ! I'm glad FF7 R is as good as some were saying it is: I can't wait to see what Square will do with the rest of the game, how many parts and how long !

Well, I always thought that the "it's not possible to deliver the game in one setting" was an excuse to milk FF7 (a lot of players feel nostalgic about it, and I'm one of them). I don't say Square is right or wrong to do it, because players are free to purchase the games or wait for a "complete edition", but the length of the game is not what I would have choose as a reason haha. But hey, maybe the complete game is too heavy for one release, or would have realeased only in a few years because of all the changes or graphics, I don't know (I didn't really understand the "break FF7 in parts")

Awww too bad for the difficulty I would have like to start the game on hard ! Do you know if new game plus has new content, except for the new difficulty ? Like quests, bosses, post game ?
Is the new content (story, characters) noticeable and any good ? Did you enjoy exploring only Midgard, was it not too boring to explore the same environment during 45 hours ?

Edited on by NightMiroir

NightMiroir

Switch Friend Code: SW-2301-2914-5039 | 3DS Friend Code: 4312-9902-0295 | My Nintendo: Sasuna

Magician

Panzer Dragoon Saga
Radiant Silvergun

Those only reasons I regret discarding my Saturn almost twenty years ago.

Both still stand as two of my top five all-time favorite games regardless of platform or genre.

Switch Physical Collection - 598 games (as of May 29th, 2020)
Currently playing: The Grisaia Trilogy (Switch)
Favorite Quote: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." -Arthur C. Clarke

Anti-Matter

Portal Knights PS4
Untitled

I knew about that game for the first time from playasia back on year 2017. At first saw i completely rejected that game due to Minecraft looking and on that time i completely never like something blocky like Minecraft. But, somehow after i watched the gameplay from Youtube, the blocky things was just the terrain and the building blocks, the rest just so natural without blocky textures. On June 2017, i played the game (PS4 version) for the first time and surprisingly it was very addictive. The character behaviour and voice acting reminded me for My Sims and the more i knew about gorgeous architectures from that game, the more i want to continue the game.

I also have the Switch version on December 2017 but i felt quite disappointed due to fps cut (60 to 30) and choppier graphics. Despite of the specs, i still continue the Switch version.

Compared with Dragon Quest Builders 1 or 2, both of them are different despite of same similarities. Portal Knights world size limited by 128 x 128 blocks in Small size, 256 x 256 blocks in Large size with every island have bottomless pit. While for DQB1 or 2, the world size was very huge and NO bottomless pit. Portal Knights now have 5 different jobs with different way to attack enemies (melee or ranged attack) while DQB games were still melee attack only.

Well, i gave 91 from 100 for Portal Knights PS4 version.

Edited on by Anti-Matter

My Top 5 Music genre:
1. Super Eurobeat
2. Cyber Trance
3. Euro Trance
4. Hardcore Techno
5. Bubblegum / Eurodance

Switch Friend Code: SW-8364-7166-5608 | 3DS Friend Code: 2638-4872-0879 | Nintendo Network ID: TAGunderground

Ralek85

@Magician Man I would LOVE for Panzer Dragoon Saga to be remade, remastered or hell even just re-released. Even if they were only to upscale it like they did for Panzer Dragoon Orta, maybe have it run on Series X with HDR, I'd pay a fair price for that.

@NightMiroir As for the whole "milking" issue, I'd say that my answer would have to be ambiguous here.

On the hand, yes, the game as some padding. Some sections of the game drag on a bit to long, without really adding any thing new to the proceedings. Then there are the sidequests of which I'd say 80% can be cut without loosing much in terms of narrative content. There are a couple decent ones, with one in particular culiminating in one of the cooler bossfights of the game actually. That would probably cut the game down in length quite a bit, like down to the 30'ish hour mark.

Before I go on, I gotta say, that I am NOT a Final Fantasy fan in general. I think the only one I really finished, against my better judgement, was XII. Don't ask me why, I guess I really was at the point were I wanted to understand what all the fuss was all about. I went back and play some of the older games, and while there were things I liked about XII, VII and VI (which should be the next one they remake imho ^^), I never really managed to stick with them long enough to see them through. There was just something off about them, like tonally, moments of cruel tragic, where right next to humor that come off as dick-jokes basically. It felt highly inconsistent to me, and I was rarely really enamoured with any of the characters either. It often just felt very trope'y in a bad way. I don't hate FF, not at all, it's just not my kind of jRPG generally speaking. One thing I felt FF excelled at though, besides music for sure, which is also really strong in FFVIIR, is world building. If you looked beyond the flaws of all the cheesiness and tonal inconsistency, there was always a beautiful world, rich in lore and myth, with a strong sense of personality, begging to be explored. I do think up and incl. FF XII Square might have probably been the best company in world in terms of building unique video game worlds. Bioware made great worlds as well, for sure, BGII is still my favourite game of all times, but that was a world bei folks who came up with D&D in the first place, it was not THEIR world. Mass Effect on the other hand, was really their masterpiece, when it comes to world building of their own. Anywho, I got easily far enough into the original FFVII to compare it, even though my memory of the details are hazy, because like I said, despite my appreciation of some aspects, it did not end up being a watershed moment for me unlike many folks I know.

If I take into account that these 30'ish hours cover like 6 hours of the original, which I wager is like a 50-60 hour game, that would mean we'd have like a 250-300 hour experience at our hand, in terms of a thoroughly playthrough. I do not think that would have been feasible for a production this rich in detail. This is a state of the art game (with one glaring issue, I'll get to), we are talking lavish production values all around making full use of the Unreal Engine 4 feature set, with some of the best motion blur I've ever seen in a game, good use of HDR, orchestral music, extensive voice acting and so on. I figure that making this game in one run, would have easily be among if not the costly and most amibitous AAA game made to date. Why take that risk, if you are Square? The game could still bomb and leave with hundreds of millions of dollars as loss ...

Furthermore, if we cut down to said 30'ish hours, we are really down to a super-tight and super-streamlined experience, remember we are doing 0 seconds grinding here, just pushing forward through the world and narrative at a really, really brisk pace, beyond anything the series has done before or jRPGs in general have done before. Parts of the game unfold at an almost exhausting break-neck pace esp. towards the end where boss fights chase boss fights for like 2-3 hours straight (that is without dying and having to replay anything).

I do think that the additional time afforded to certain characters, but also the development of motivations and relationsships was highly, highly worth it. Like ... yes, this is actually significantly better than the origianl in almost all regards when it comes to writing and cohesiveness and relatability. I think I made clear how much I liked the characters and how their dynamics developed, like ALOT. I do not think that I would have enjoyed the game even half as much, if they had kept all of this down to like 5-6'ish hours like in the original. It's a really drastic change and stretches the term "remake" pretty darn far, even in those areas where it is entirely faithfully and just expanding stuff.

Now, having said all that, I do think that they could have done it in 30 hours and I gotta assume the next part, again it's own game for sure, will be designed pretty much in the same vein, as they were most likely done in large part in parallel (if not, and the next part is 5 years away, it will be 20-30 years until they finish this at this pace, no kidding). Meaning yes, if they really, really wanted, they could have halved the nummer of parts and have us deliver double the content of the original in a super-duper-tight 50-60'ish hour package.

Hence, no, remaking the whole game in this fashion in one go was not an option in my book. It would have taken them another 5 years at least to do this moving this game potentially into a PS6 (!!) release window for christ sake. It would have been a business risk not worth taking, even unreasonable. But yes, they did not have to limit themselves to literally just the opening act of the original game neither.

Still, given what we got, how much fun the combat is (with the caveats I laid out earlier), I am actually happy that we get to play more of it. Let me make this clear, this is about as high a praise as I can give to a game that is not perfect, but really, really fu***** enjoyable. I was decidely sad to see it end. I could have gone for another 200 hours for sure.

To your question then, I think yes, they are adding enough meat to justify this splitting in parts, they are making enough mechanical changes (it really is just a new game mechanically speaking) to justify this and they are offering the production values to ask $60 each and every time, but no, it was not without alternative, they could have done LESS parts for sure, if they were really up to the challenge of doing a new kind of jRPG, with ... zero grinding, zero downtime, zero sidecontent and so on. It would have been a wild experiment though, like even more than it is even now.

This should also answer your question as to the new content. Yes, I really enjoyed the additional time I got. I really like JEsse and Aerith sooo much more now, the whole world just feels tons more relateable, I get how Cloud changes his perspektive on things and why he acts like does, unlike in the original game, were, I dunno, I was not really interested, but still went along, cos' Tifa and whatever, and money, but not really, and yeah ... the gaps that were there are not more apparent than ever.

As for the environment, again, I am a bit ambiguous. I do think the lack of variety is an issue. There are some outstanding moments in this game, particularly the first 2 hours or so are breathtakingly gorgeous and some of the best visuals and atmosphere I've seen in a videogame yet. After that a couple of issues creep up: 1st, things do get reptitive, as you are basically getting the Midgar and slums vibe offer and offer again with little variation. There are still some stand-out sections like the dense and dingy Wall Market hub for instance. There is also Aerith's home, with is a nice visual reprieve with their lush greenes and flowers, which reminded me of the stand-out moment this gen: The Witch's Sanctuary in God of War, which was just like ... so beautiful in 4k/HDR, it totally made me tear up, like wow ... It's not THAT good, but it made me recall that moment in GoW and that speaks well of it.

Furthermore, I very much like the art direction. It was already one of the best aspects, together with the ATB system and music, in in the original. It do not quite now what to call it, it's a mix of steampunk and cyberpunk aesthetically speaking, but to me it also felt very reminiscent of H.R. Giger as everything has the round, curved and very ..., well organic shapes to it, with very little harsh angles. This is particuarly true for the last major areas of the game, Hojo's lab, which gave me very strong Giger vibes.

Anyways, the production values and the excellent art direction, together with the brisk pace, constant entertaining banter and excellent combat (for the most part) really made me not care about the lack of variety in environments. It's as simple as that. Yes, there are lacking and yes, it's mark against the game, but it's not something that impeded my enjoyment of the game in any way, and that means ... it was a non-issue to me at the end of the day.

I will say, that I would potentially ad one caveat here, I alluded to earlier and that is the presentation. After those fist few hours in the reactor and the afthermath, the visuals do take a noticeable hit. First of all, there are some areas where textures do not load. I'm not a nitpicky guy, but even I noticed it and sure enough watching the Digital Foundry video yesterday, they noticed the exact same thing at the exact same spot: the door to clouds apparment is buggy for instance. The texture does not load. Then there are TONS of low-res textures to be found in the slums throughout. I do not know if this is a bug, given that the game also has some rather obvious texture streaming issues, with textures sometimes loading in seconds after you reach a spot, or if this is again a bug, but these low res textures for grouds and wall and signs and such, are super obvious and do hurt the game a bit. It makes parts of the world, that do look repetitive also look rather drab. it's so obvious because the character modells are this insanely good and also the first few hours (and plenty more sequences in between) are really gorgeous. Like the church has some really, really nice baked lighting, making for a great sense of place and atmosphere.

Overall all though, the game perfecturly captures the state of decay the world is in. Like everyone is imprisoned in this stagnant world, that is slowly dying, and after a while, I just go over the texture issue. It's not a deal breaker, just a problem that is very conspicous is a videogame that is otherwise soo polish, that you are aware at every turn, that this is jus Square throwing money at the screen non-stop, like going all-out no holds barred. It's still a side to behold, again, amazing motion blur, really particle effects everywhere, even more so than in God of War, which already made that game a visual spectacle beyond compare esp. in HDR, and superb art direction for the most part, also with the enemies and such.

Speaking of God of War, the way they visualized "impact" was very reminiscent of GoW. Like the parrying in Punisher Stance had this great frame-stop supported crunch, that got close to GoW's axe throw, which I would argue is the act with the greatest weapon feedback in all of videogames to this day. It's just perfectly fine-tuned, visually as well as acoustically. For a at heard turn-based jRPG I was surprised and beyond overjoyed to find FFVIIR actually veering into the same territory of quality here than GoW, a game build entirely around bone-crunch action. It actually made me wonder if they might have had some help by Santa Monica Studios. Given that Playstation has a stake in this game, and how fond Sony is of having THEIR studios constantly exchange experiences, I feel that this is not ouf the question.

One thing is for sure though, MANY a inspiration was taken by Square here from such an unlikely place like God of War. The heavy emphasis on particle effects is not only just because of the UE4 engine's capability. The combat in FFVIIR is alll in all just to reminiscent of GoW to be just a coincidence. I bet my house that many designers over at Square are big GoW (2018) fans for sure, like 100%. It even has the same issues with camera controls like GoW, sadly without the combat indicator solution, but still. Even the motion blur feels very similar to God of War ... again, GoW does not use UE4 like FFVIIR but the similarities are still so uncanncy, that a coincidence seems entirely out of the question for two of the biggest console (timed) exclusives for the PS4 out there.

As for new content in Hard Mode/NG+, I am not sure, but bascially I doubt it, as this is just a chapter select mode, where you can choose Hard difficutly for more challenge. There are some items, manifests that give SP points, that you can only get in hard mode. There are some new combat simulator challenges though, and possibly arena challenges as well, not sure, I'd have to check. I might actually play some hard mode today, not sure yet, I spend like 9+ hours with the game for 5 day straight, I feel I want to savour my next run and not rush through it again right away, even though I am curious to see how the combat plays. Oh, and you cannot use items in Hardmode, so you really have to manage your MP and be careful about healing and resurrection etc.

Lastly, the "complete edition" ... sure, some day, but I would not wait for it. Like I said, given their current pace, that could be like a PS6 release, seriously, that might very well be 10+ years away. This not like a waiting 18 months for a games GotY edition. Whole different ball game in my view. I would wait a couple of weeks to see if the texture issue is addressed in some way or shape, because I feel at least like the aforementioned door is a actually a bug and not a technical shortcoming. Hell, you might want to wait for a PS6 release, as that console is tailor made to overcome the texture streaming issue.

IF they patch it for PS6 or release a PS6 version, I would definitely pick that one, because sadly, it is a bit of an issue. I'll probably also hold of for my hard run a while and see if they'll do something about it.

Other than though, do NOT sleep on Final Fantasy VII Remake. Even if you are not a FF fan or a fan of jRPGs in general or of FF VII Original in particular. This is not just for FF or VII fans, hell, it's not even straight up for "core" jRPGs fans. It's very much it's own thing, and it's really interesting to see how they came to this with some elements from XII, XIII and XV being in there to some degree, mechanically speaking here.

I would like some more control about my party members, like commands to tell them who to attack once I am not controlling them for instance, but those are small nitpicks here and there and some of it will be fine-tuned going forward. I feel though, that all in all these combat modell is their way forward for the next-generation of FF games coming over the next 6-8 years for sure. There is no going back to the tediousness of classic turn-based combat. Again, some fine-tuning is still in need, also when it comes to the way encounters are handled are the camera for sure, but as a general frame work:
This is the best combat they have ever built - period. It's probably also the best action-oriented combat in a jRPG in general as well. That is not to say that turn-based is bad or dead. Not gonna rave about Resonace of Fate again, but that is one modell for that framework to go forward. But the "stand-off" wait-for-your-turn-stare-at-your-enemy modell seems pretty dead to me. There is also the Fire Emblem path of course, what Ring of Red did. In the end, all of this is still turn-based, but the key here is not to make the player NOTICE that IT IS.

XV was a step in the wrong direction, with entirely abandoning any depth, making magic pointless, and having basically one mechanic at all, with the rest just literally holding down one button. They seem to have learned alot from that experience though, hence I do think it was worth it ultimately.

Puh, that has been another extensive comment, I hope I could answer all your questions and do share some of my passion and enjoyment for this beautiful title Do enjoy it once you get around to it!

Edited on by Ralek85

Switch: 3355-6459-9982 | 3DS: 2809-7989-1816 | NNID: Ralek85

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