The GWJ JRPG Club 2.0

I’ll vote for Final Fantasy XII.

I’d like to wait for the rerelease later this year to (re)play Secret of Mana.

ClockworkHouse wrote:
Mr GT Chris wrote:

I'd prefer random draw because it does give a small chance that a more off beat title will be chosen. I think limiting it to top 3 is a good compromise that means we won't have a pick with only a handful of votes get chosen (which happened once or twice before). Just Final Fantasy xx etc every round isn't interesting to me. Exaggerating I know but this would be the third FF chosen or fourth if you count World of FF (I don't really).

If only we could draw good taste out of a hat... but until then, I think we're stuck with FF games galore.

And to be a bit more whiny, having a recent HD rerelease should perhaps disqualify it because there was already a recent opportunity to play along with the community (theoretically anyway). Meanwhile we have all these 3-10 year old JRPGs languishing on our backlogs. I've got probably 20 unplaced Vita JRPGs that I know wouldn't get any traction here but at least a few people seem to have the Digimon game. Plus it was extremely well reviewed (for a Vita game).

As far as FFXII, probably my favourite mainline FF but I already played it twice when it came out and again just a few years ago. Plus it's not portable.

Well... here's where we stand right now:

Final Fantasy XII (9)
Suikoden II (7)
Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel (5)
Resonance of Fate (5)
Secret of Mana (5)
Tokyo Mirage Sessions (4)
Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth (3)
Shadow Hearts (1)*

*FWIW I think Shadow Hearts looks interesting. Unfortunately it's not on the Playstation Store and I don't have a PS2!

We seem to be split as far as picking the number one choice versus random draw from the top three. The results so far do point out an "issue" with going with the top three since third place is currently a three-way tie. So we'd have five games instead of three in the running. That's not necessarily a bad thing... they all have five or more votes.

Out of curiosity, I took a look at the former thread. While we have had a number of Final Fantasy games, neither World of Final Fantasy or Final Fantasy XV were the top pick (or in the top three) when they won. Food for thought.

As for allowing HD remakes. Personally, I'm fine with this as they don't seem to garner the same amount of conversation in the community, but, as always, if a majority of people are against the idea, I'm here to please... to a point.

steinkrug wrote:

As for allowing HD remakes. Personally, I'm fine with this as they don't seem to garner the same amount of conversation in the community, but, as always, if a majority of people are against the idea, I'm here to please... to a point.

I'm fine with HD remakes mostly because a lot of people don't have access to older consoles as it is, so it gives people a chance to still be able to play as opposed to being completely left out. As an example:

steinkrug wrote:

*FWIW I think Shadow Hearts looks interesting. Unfortunately it's not on the Playstation Store and I don't have a PS2!

I'm assuming the people are voting for games that they can actually play and we'd want to pick a game that the majority of people can participate in. If the vote comes in and it's a game I've either already played or don't have access to, then that's just how it shook out and I don't see any issue with that. I've got plenty of other games JRPG and otherwise that I can be playing. *shrug*

I voted for the two games I own on the list, one of which I nominated. Didn't get any more complicated than that for me.

Mr GT Chris wrote:

Meanwhile we have all these 3-10 year old JRPGs languishing on our backlogs. I've got probably 20 unplaced Vita JRPGs that I know wouldn't get any traction here but at least a few people seem to have the Digimon game. Plus it was extremely well reviewed (for a Vita game).

Not all f us - I have a few in my backlog but I'm using this to reenter a genre that I used to be in love with. One reason I didn't vote.

I mean, if I wanted to make you all suffer I'd have nominated Akiba's Beat. At least I can New Game + through it so as to minimize my suffering.

Also, I need to play Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky still on my PSP, but as far as I'm aware the club has already played it. I don't think I even knew about the club then. As with all democracies, you can't always get what you want, so sometimes it's better to sit out and use that as your own personal pile time, and maybe if you find you like a game enough you can nominate it again and enjoy the discussion of everyone going through it the first time.

There's always a bright side to be had!

Personally I'd prefer Secret of Mana be at the top as I'll be playing it twice over the next three months, but hey! Now I'll finally be encouraged to get back to my FFXII playthrough and knock it off the pile.

A_Unicycle wrote:
steinkrug wrote:
A_Unicycle wrote:
Resonance of Fate (2010; PS3, 360)

Ooh, here's one I could be tempted back to. I absolutely adored the presentation and whole idea of the game, but it was pretty abstract and repetitive.

I just wish it was a short, succinct little experience. 50 hours was a bit much, I never finished it.

Should I could that as a vote? You’ve still got one left.

I was going to say no, but then Beeporama really sold me on it.

I'm really not sure how keen I am to jump back in right now, mostly because the systems don't really evolve over time. You're stuck with the same thing for 50 hours, and it does get very stale...But the complexity is there, and I think it would be very interesting to explore tactics and encounters with the GWJ crew.

I respectfully disagree. Theoretically it's all there in the beginning, but over time, the combat goes through distinct phases of complexity:

(1) Just barely (or not at all) understanding what's going on.
(2) Understanding the basics: scratch vs direct damage, the weapon types, hero moves, being able to jump, modifiers based on colored hexes. This is a long slow evolution.
(3) Building up enough bezels, and understanding how to refresh them by breaking enemies, so that combat has evolved to almost exclusively using hero actions nonstop.
(4) Late- and Post-game fights where you need to be at Level 99 in one or more weapons so you can rely on breaking enemies to stun them, and plotting out the chess match of constantly stunning enemies, ending runs in cover, etc., so they don't almost instantly slaughter you.

I mean, very few games significantly change and evolve their systems; but your mastery should peel back the layers of the onion so that how you approach combat is evolving over the course of the game.

Meanwhile, although you can customize guns and lay down hexes almost from the beginning, access to new materials and hex types change those systems over time. Once you have leveled enough to dual-wield, and new accessories become available, as well as different types of ammunition... you can start approaching combat with rather different tactics.

This might not be rewarding or worth it to you (it wasn't for most people, it seems) but combat should feel very different after 20 and 50 hours than it did before.

Not sure I'll be able to participate in the club, but I'm following with interest.

One suggestion on the final pick - maybe instead of taking top vote or randomly taking from top 3, do a draw from the top 3 (including ties) where the entry tickets are equal to the number of votes. That way #1 gets a slight edge and more likely chance, but it doesn't exclude the other games mentioned. And it takes some of the politics out of it by keeping it relatively random.

I haven't really been able to JRPG since I got married so I'm living vicariously through you all. Keep up the grinding!

Kyekye wrote:

I haven't really been able to JRPG since I got married so I'm living vicariously through you all. Keep up the grinding!

I love that “JRPG” has now become a verb.

It seems so obvious in hindsight that our particular niche of the gaming world requires and encapsulates its own quirks in its very name that I wonder how I’ve gotten this far in without using it in this way before. Thanks, Kyekye.

It reminds me of the first time I heard “to google” said out loud, and could thereafter retire “web search” to the dustbin of the 90s alongside JNCO jeans and Rob Liefeld art.

Kyekye wrote:

Not sure I'll be able to participate in the club, but I'm following with interest.

One suggestion on the final pick - maybe instead of taking top vote or randomly taking from top 3, do a draw from the top 3 (including ties) where the entry tickets are equal to the number of votes. That way #1 gets a slight edge and more likely chance, but it doesn't exclude the other games mentioned. And it takes some of the politics out of it by keeping it relatively random.

I haven't really been able to JRPG since I got married so I'm living vicariously through you all. Keep up the grinding!

Thanks, Kyekye. Yeah, that’s how it has been done in the past. Damnable Bear used a bingo cage but the concept was the same: each game got a number of balls corresponding to the number of votes. All games were included, though, which resulted in games with two or three votes winning some times. Going with just the top three, but still using one “entry” per vote was seen as a way of dealing with that kind of outcome.

Really, though, the goal is to have the most people participate. The most direct, simple way of doing that seems to be to go with the top vote. And with a small club like this, a couple more people playing can make a big difference in the amount of discussion I think.

I'll make an honest attempt of atleast trying what ever gets picked as long as its somewhat accessable

Looking at my steam backlog I'm already going to end up playing Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel sometime this year, so I'll put in a vote for that. I also plan on playing Secret of Mana when its released again this year so that would be a good game fore later.

What about something like Cosmic Star Heroine? I've been meaning to play it and its gotten good word of mouth.

(BTW I realized nominations were over for this year but I was just curious about adding it in the future)

Here's my list:

Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel
Skys or Arcadia / Dreamcast (is it even possible)
Lost Odyssey

Darkhaund wrote:

Here's my list:

Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel
Skys or Arcadia / Dreamcast (is it even possible)
Lost Odyssey

Hi Darkhaund! So, we’re done with nominations for this quarter and are taking votes (up to three per person) from the following list:

Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth (2015; PS4, PSVita)
Final Fantasy XII (2006; PS2, PS4)
Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel (2015; PC, PS3, PSVita)
Resonance of Fate (2010; PS3, 360)
Secret of Mana (1993; SNES, Mobile)
Shadow Hearts (2001; PS2)
Suikoden II (1999; PSOne)
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE (2016; Wii U)

As you can see, Cold Steel is on there, so I’ll count you as voting for that, but let me know if you want to vote for any others.

And I’d certainly welcome a nomination of one of the other two for next quarter!

ok... I vote for Cold Steel

Thank you and sorry for the confusion

EbonyPegasus wrote:

Looking at my steam backlog I'm already going to end up playing Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel sometime this year, so I'll put in a vote for that. I also plan on playing Secret of Mana when its released again this year so that would be a good game fore later.

What about something like Cosmic Star Heroine? I've been meaning to play it and its gotten good word of mouth.

Thanks for the votes!

I’m not against a JRPG-inspired game from outside of Japan. That said, Cosmic Star Heroine may be a little short to spend three months on. i know the same concern was raised in the old thread about Child of Light.

Darkhaund wrote:

ok... I vote for Cold Steel

Thank you and sorry for the confusion

No problem at all!

Votes update going into the weekend:

Final Fantasy XII (9)
Suikoden II (7)
Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel (7)
Secret of Mana (6)
Resonance of Fate (5)
Tokyo Mirage Sessions (4)
Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth (3)
Shadow Hearts (1)

Will post the thread for the winner Sunday morning. Thanks to everyone who has voted so far.

Right now I’m leaning toward starting with a new list of nominations each quarter. Open to thoughts.

I think new nominations ever quarter is a good way to keep things clean. If people want to nominate the same game again, it's pretty easy, but if something else came up that they really like it gives them the chance to change their nomination. Also gives a better gauge of what is actually on people's mind to play at a point in time.

Malkroth wrote:

I think new nominations ever quarter is a good way to keep things clean. If people want to nominate the same game again, it's pretty easy, but if something else came up that they really like it gives them the chance to change their nomination. Also gives a better gauge of what is actually on people's mind to play at a point in time.

Thanks for your thoughts, Malkroth. That’s pretty much my thinking.

Is a PS2 XII backward compatible on the PS4? I just bought a 4 and put my 2 away. Still have the disks for XII.

Mixolyde wrote:

Is a PS2 XII backward compatible on the PS4? I just bought a 4 and put my 2 away. Still have the disks for XII.

Nope. It was re-released... kind of an "HD" version. It does have less jaggies/aliasing...

It plays great on Windows using an emulator though if you want to go that route. That's how I played it last time. Probably looks about as good as the actual HD rerelease.

I'll throw my hat in for FF XII or Secret of Mana. Got the HD remake of XII on my shelf and I'm probably picking up a Switch later this month so I can hopefully pick up Mana on the virtual console.

Surprising no one at this point, the game for Q1 of 2018 is... Final Fantasy XII.

The thread is up.

Final vote count:

Final Fantasy XII (10)
Suikoden II (7)
Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel (7)
Secret of Mana (7)
Resonance of Fate (5)
Tokyo Mirage Sessions (4)
Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth (3)
Shadow Hearts (1)

Looking forward to the quarter!

I'm tempted to get a copy so I can join in, but my track record with Final Fantasy games isn't great, to say the least.