JRPG Catch-All

ClockworkHouse wrote:
beeporama wrote:
ClockworkHouse wrote:

Come on, Sega. Just port Resonance of Fate to literally anything current that's not a smart phone. [/port begging]

I don't know what makes you bring this up, but having played it through twice, I'm ready for a third go at an HD version. There's not enough love for the game, though; I have zero optimism for such a thing.

The game requires too much precision control for a small screen. It might work on a tablet, but you're still missing a lot of effect, at best. It would be a money-losing waste to do a mobile port, I think.

No reason to bring it up except that I love that game, but Sega seems content to pretend that it never happened. They've ported and remastered other games from the era like Valkyria and Bayonetta and Yakuza and Vanquish, but Resonance of Fate gets about as much love as The Conduit.

To be fair: Sega is probably like "We own this?" More Sonic games it is.

SEGA MAKES ME SAD.

Here's a report on their latest earnings reports and it seems to read like this (shockingly):

WE DON'T KNOW WHAT WE'RE DOING!

To be fair, that's basically their same response to their earnings reports since 1992 or so.

At least they know it and admit it.

Sammy should just sell Sega to Microsoft and call it a day.

Electronic Arts: Hold my beer

EA is making money regardless of their image of the Devil(TM).

ClockworkHouse wrote:
shoptroll wrote:

Not a JRPG but isn't a new Tomb Raider game believed to be in development?

Maybe, but I'd be surprised. Last I saw, Square-Enix had Crystal Dynamics and Eidos Montreal both working full-time on their Avengers project(s).

There's speculation. The official Twitter account confirmed there's a game in development, and time to play will be shortly after the announcement. People are assuming 2018 because "Our journey together will begin with a major event in 2018". The conclusion for most is E3, but the following statement of "We simply can't wait to take you on Lara Croft's defining adventure" has me thinking the film.

Based on a Reddit post where a guy in Montreal saw a dude open up a laptop with slides regarding "Shadow of the Tomb Raider", there's assumptions that Eidos Montreal are indeed working on this.

Of course, recently announced was a tie-in arcade game that will be playable at Dave & Busters locations to fit with the movie.

I know this is all crazily off topic for the JRPG catch-all, but I'm thinking an actual game is in development, but we're not going to hear news until some time later. I think 2018 is way too soon but I've been wrong before.

Off topic? Since when doesn't anyone worry about that?

Speaking of slightly off topic, Yakuza 6 is coming in a couple months and if your only experience with the series is Yakuza 0 or Kiwami, which were released last year, then Sega has setup a site so you can catch up on all the story beats. There's even a 10 part interactive comic.

Kiwami 2 is also slated to come....this fall I think? Maybe there hasn't been an official thing but it's definitely coming.

I'm glad, I dropped off the franchise after 2 and zero has been a fun game to play through.

ccesarano wrote:

I know this is all crazily off topic for the JRPG catch-all

This has always been secretly the Square-Enix Catch-all thread

Not at all. Secretly, it has always been this:

OzymandiasAV wrote:

This should be called the Sean Sands Invitational JRPG Discussion Thread.

Someone needs to anonymously send him a copy of TWEWY Final Remix when that comes out.

Level-5 is finally getting on the Switch bandwagon! A port of The Snack World: Trejarers is hitting Japan in April.

Slightly back on topic, I keep thinking to how Shoptroll has noted bad habits developed from playing so many Square games growing up, and reflecting on how other older RPG's stack up against those trends. Unfortunately my non-Square experience on the SNES is limited, as the only other RPG's I really played were Inindo: Way of the Ninja (which I'd still like to revisit some time), Breath of Fire, and EarthBound. Everything else, even if it wasn't Final Fantasy, was pretty much Square developed, like Chrono Trigger and Secret of Mana/Evermore. I had some experience with Shining Force on the Genesis, but only because I played it obsessively when my brother's friend brought his system over with the game one weekend.

The curious thing is that, starting with Final Fantasy 1 on the NES, I got in the habit of grinding and conserving MP. Even though Final Fantasy IV and VI would eliminate the need to rely on this, I continued to grind and conserve MP. In fact, I imagine one of the reasons I felt a need to grind is because I wasn't using magic at all. I would then take these same tactics into other RPG's such as EarthBound and Breath of Fire, and I similarly ground in those games.

I've discussed before that grinding in EarthBound is actually kind of a fruitless exercise. You only see significant stat-boosts every few levels, with most levels gained offering 1 or 2 points in one or two stats. At some point the experience required far outstrips what you're gaining. To this extent, the game sort of balances itself so that you are at the level the devs intend for you to be at, though I'd argue it's kind of poorly balanced. You spend a lot of time alone, then by time you get Paula she is at level one and never quite catches up to Ness. For a brief period you're pretty good with three characters, but when Paula gets whisked away at the Fourside Department Store the game feels balanced for three characters still rather than two. Grinding is beyond diminishing returns, and I'd say it's more an issue of the developers failing to curve the challenge properly that makes it difficult.

I'm playing Breath of Fire a little bit right now, and my recollection of the game was that it was "old skool NES hard" when I played it on SNES. Whereas Final Fantasy by that point was emphasizing story and starting you with already higher level characters, everything feels like a threat in the start of Breath of Fire. It's tempting to grind some, but twice now I've experimented with heading directly to the first dungeon.

It's interesting how much more interesting the opening of Breath of Fire is simply due to how vulnerable I feel. It also allows me the chance to see how generous the first dungeon is. By the end of it I was feeling pretty empowered, and as I headed to the second dungeon I was standing much stronger. Until... the boss of the second dungeon. The downside to Breath of Fire's opening is it also feels like you could die at any time for any reason, and with regards to that second boss it's largely because you do so little damage and he capable of so much. This can be mitigated by back-tracking to the first village to buy more healing items, or to open a few chests in the first floor of the second dungeon before returning to the surface to by a longsword (barely makes a difference in damage dealt to the boss), but overall it's more of a trial-and-error scenario where you don't have a save point before the boss.

To feed Clock's ego a bit, it really is kind of amazing how Final Fantasy has gotten so popular in America when it's the least exciting to start. They're all incredibly easy for those early dungeons and have a boss that teaches you a skill that is barely, if at all, replicated (to sometimes not attack during certain phases lest you risk a counter-attack). I began FF7 on the Playstation and it's just kind of... eh. Meanwhile, moving on over to Secret of Mana and it's like "WHAM BAM TAKE THAT RABITE!" or in Breath of Fire it's like "Oh sh*t, three slimes! f*ck!"

But maybe that ease of Final Fantasy is precisely what I needed as a kid for these games to be accessible. Just interesting going back and examining their different approaches and considering what bad habits FF might have given.

ccesarano wrote:

Slightly back on topic, I keep thinking to how Shoptroll has noted bad habits developed from playing so many Square games growing up, and reflecting on how other older RPG's stack up against those trends.

I caught myself thinking about this lately, too, as I’ve been playing through Star Ocean: First Departure on PSP.

I’m not sure whether I’d call the habits “bad,” exactly, but I certainly feel like I’ve been trained to expect a certain something from all my years with menu-driven, turn-based battle systems that have left me uncomfortable with other takes on these encounters. Mostly, I find myself longing for a familiar ATB system instead of the button mashing that seems to comprise Star Ocean’s combat.

I wonder if I’ve just become institutionalized after all these years.

Release date announcement coming at E3.

ccesarano wrote:

Slightly back on topic, I keep thinking to how Shoptroll has noted bad habits developed from playing so many Square games growing up, and reflecting on how other older RPG's stack up against those trends. Unfortunately my non-Square experience on the SNES is limited, as the only other RPG's I really played were Inindo: Way of the Ninja (which I'd still like to revisit some time), Breath of Fire, and EarthBound. Everything else, even if it wasn't Final Fantasy, was pretty much Square developed, like Chrono Trigger and Secret of Mana/Evermore.

I never said they were "bad" habits. I just said I've built up a resistance to a lot of what they do in their designs.

As for non-Square touchstones, mine were about the same as yours. Breath of Fire, Earthbound, and Ogre Battle (which was Enix published at the time) on the SNES, with the occasional dabbling with Might & Magic II on PC (which I could not figure out all that well as a kid because there's a lot of QoL stuff that console games did for you at the time).

The curious thing is that, starting with Final Fantasy 1 on the NES, I got in the habit of grinding and conserving MP. Even though Final Fantasy IV and VI would eliminate the need to rely on this, I continued to grind and conserve MP.

FF 1 didn't have a proper MP system. It's a much more limited "magic charge" system which encourages hoarding of spells because you're only given a limited number of uses of each tier of spell.

Platstation was my first console I really got into gaming with, and FF7 was my first (and most favorite) FF game, and the longest time it was the only FF game that I finished. I spent more time playing Lunar and Star Ocean games as a kid.

garion333 wrote:

Just to double-back to this... There's a decent interview with the CEO that was posted on Metro UK about a month ago which goes into more detail on this and how he feels they're getting their groove back.

(h/t this Era thread for surfacing the interview)

It's also interesting to compare the "CONSERVE!" attitude of early Square-Enix games with the influence of Dungeons & Dragons on early RPGs; early editions of D&D made magic spells and potions a precious and extremely limited resource.

Now, I think designers have come to realize that games are more interesting when you have a wide palette of abilities at your disposal. Besides being more fun and empowering, they can ironically be MORE challenging if they demand you to select the best among a range of abilities, rather than a more binary "is it time yet to do something other than hit it with my sword?" Even the survival horror genre seems to have realized that more choice than "when is it bad enough to use my limited resource?" makes a more interesting game.

GWJ ate yet another one of my posts, so here's the Reader's Digest condensed version: limited-use spells and items work better in a tabletop context than in a video game one, because social pressure, limited play time, and the whims of the DM obviate the benefits of level grinding. But when the only time you'll waste is your own, players will grind because grinding is the most optimal solution to most RPG problems, and it is definitionally the easiest—you are deliberately seeking out and repeating content with the lowest level of challenge for the greatest level of XP gain.

Unless video game players are forced into using consumables in some way, they never will, because the anxiety of not having that Megalixer when they really need it is more unpleasant than spending three dull-as-spoons hours killing goblins. That thing where people horde powerful consumables for so long that they roll credits without ever using them is inevitable.

Good points. Would be interesting to see an RPG innovate on these specific realities. Like a very low hard cap for items (you can only have 10 elixirs at once or w/e) and a cap on XP for level grinding until you hit certain points in the story.

I'm racking my brain for good examples of the above, but I can't think of many. I thought Dark Souls did a cool thing with Estus. You never have to grind for healing items, but you also can't spam your way through encounters (well that's the idea anyway, Estus does get a bit "too strong" if you ask me).

God Wars is getting an enhanced release for PS4, Vita, and Switch. Anyone play it?

ClockworkHouse wrote:

God Wars is getting an enhanced release for PS4, Vita, and Switch. Anyone play it?

I played it a decent amount, pretty decent srpg, combat similar to Jeane D'Arc.

Fastmav347 wrote:
ClockworkHouse wrote:

God Wars is getting an enhanced release for PS4, Vita, and Switch. Anyone play it?

I played it a decent amount, pretty decent srpg, combat similar to Jeane D'Arc.

You have all of my attention. I'll check it out, money withstanding.

beeporama wrote:

It's also interesting to compare the "CONSERVE!" attitude of early Square-Enix games with the influence of Dungeons & Dragons on early RPGs; early editions of D&D made magic spells and potions a precious and extremely limited resource.

Yeahhhh.... You don't get more "influenced by D&D" than Final Fantasy whose bestiary is a literal carbon copy of the AD&D 1.0 Monster Manual.

Not to mention the fact that Akitoshi Kawazu stated a while back that part of their intent with the first game was to take the framework of Dragon Quest and get it as close to D&D as possible.

Random thought this morning: why hasn't Square-Enix handed Kingdom Hearts III development duties to PlatinumGames yet?

Because bad gameplay is par for the course for KH games.

Wasn't that also true of Nier and Drakengard?

shoptroll wrote:

Random thought this morning: why hasn't Square-Enix handed Kingdom Hearts III development duties to PlatinumGames yet?

garion333 wrote:

Because bad gameplay is par for the course for KH games.

Coming soon, from the studio that brought you Star Fox Zero and Legend of Korra...

I can't recall if I posted this before, but it's one person's opinion on how and why the world building in Falcom's games is superior to (low bar) Bethesda and others.

(Recommend watching the video he links to about Shandification.)

What Falcom has done is admirable and figured this video was a good way to show some of the ways in which people get Kiseki Cracked. It's interesting to me because so few games tie their worlds together and certainly not to the degree that Falcom has. What other developers have been building a world for 30+ years? It certainly helps that Falcom, being the small-medium sized company they are, re-releases and updates their games regularly so they can retcon some of the new lore.

That said, Trails games are the slowest of the slow burns and I sometimes wish Falcom would up the early game pace. It's great that they write so much dialogue, but I'd prefer if it were handled somewhat differently. A true, open world, non-linear Falcom game/series would be great, but is probably well outside of their financial scope. Instead, we get the linear, conservative talky talky games. And I'm okay with that, but would love to see someone else take up the reins and do something different with it. Of course, in game development, that sort of commitment is likely near impossible with turnover being so high, etc. Perhaps the payoff isn't worth the investment.