The One Year Mark
||June 15, 2005
Today's column may be a tad on the short side, as I have to get up early for some nasty family
Someone missed my point.
For the question on the Nippon Ichi TRPG's. Sure there's humor in them, but
there is rarely any storyline when you compare them to most TRPGs, and then
in most parts, none of the randomness in the game is just funny.
Like in Disgaea a little bit after Ninja Flonne and up until Gordon, there
really is nothing amusing, and the storyline is just crap anyways. Then the
ability to change classes is just that, an ability of changing classes. It
doesn't make for any character customization, because having those different
classes you'll have one or two stat points off. The only thing you can
customize your characters with the classes is the weapons, and each weapon
can only use certain abilities that are usually much like the last weapon a
Disgaea is the same as La Pucelle, where La Pucelle has the exact same
thing, where you learn spells or gain different things from weapons, but
there really is nothing at all to customize.
It's just that these games have so much stuff thrown in there to look like
you can create largely customized characters, but there really is nothing in
the area of customizing, and you end up with hundreds of characters who have
different abilities that do the exact same thing because they're equipped
with different weapons.
Uh... no? I don't know what you think "storyline" means, but Disgaea has one, and presents it nicely
I should say. It's somewhat smarmy and not at all epic in scope, but again, variety is good.
Also... who said anything about costumizable characters? I don't particularly WANT customizable characters
in a TRPG. Too much hassle. I do however enjoy being able to form huge parties, freely selecting from a
couple dozen classes as I see fit. Party customization in other words.
Everything else you're saying I could answer by pasting bits of yesterday's column, so let's just move
on, but next time, please try to phrase your question in the form of a question.
Again and again and again...
Isn't La Pucelle a Nippon Ichi game? Then it most certainly does have a plot involving a corrupt church secretly run by demons in a setting resembling Europe in the 1400s.
And that's pretty much while I'll play through Disgaea 10 times before I'll play through La Pucelle once.
I didn't say none of their games used the old standby, just that they do other things too.
Who wants fish?
You mentioned that your personal favorite secondary character in an RPG is
Myau. I have to disgaree. Nall is far superior. Not only is he quite
humourous, but he's a talking, FLYING housecat (baby dragon, really, but he
LOOKS like a cat, so a cat he is). That makes him automatically 50%better
than Myau right there.
First, I didn't say that. Second, I consider Myau to be cooler than Nall precisely BECAUSE he's a plain
ol' ordinary housecat. I'd make another observation here, but it'd be a decent sized spoiler for a game
most people still haven't played.
Anyway, my actual question:
I'm a huge Lunar (or LUNAR, if you prefer) fan. I bought a Sega CD
specifically to play that game when it came out, and it blew me away. I've
since followed the series, even to the point of purchasing the tragically
disappointing Lunar Legend. and the upcoming release of Lunar Genesis fills
me with both elation (because it's a new Lunar game. Duh.) and trepidation.
First of all, the screenshots seem to indicate that the combat system is an
isometric affair, similar to games like Golden Sun. I don't know about you,
but Lunar's traditional battle system was always one of my favorites...
moving to a generic turn-based system really seems like a step down to me.
In addition, this whole Light/Dark thing, as well as "Battle Cards" that can
be traded seems to smack of gimmickery (is that a word? Well, it is now!).
Maybe I'm overreacting, but it seems to me that the Lunar Genesis team is
hard at work annihilating the mechanics of the series I love so much. I
really haven't seen or heard anything about NPC interaction or inter-party
interaction, but if they ALSO remove the wonderful character interaction
that Lunar has grown to have, I may just cry.
Thanks for putting up with my incoherant ranting, and keep up the good work!
When I first played Lunar (on the PSX) one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much is that nobody makes games
the way they did in the 16-bit days anymore. So the problem with yon actual new Lunar here is, again,
people don't make RPGs like that anymore. It's like griping about how the latest GBA Castlevania game
has all this collection stuff that wasn't in Castlevania 2... except that here you have a somewhat legitimate
reason to gripe... I've never seen anyone who calls CV2 their favorite.
i actually (still) own one of the alps controllers mentioned the other day.
i rather liked it since the dpad was one big, smooth dimple, and i brought
it whenever i went somewhere to play street fighter. i liked using it in
general because it was bulky. i could really get my hands on it and actually
so what i want to know is if i am a minority thinking that controllers are
generally not being designed with the expanding demographic in mind.
i'm no giant, and i'm hard pressed at times to feel like i'm really in
charge of one of those little buggers.
Actually, the average gamer's hands are on the smaller side, and this used to be even more true. The
problem is that most people who "design" controllers have absolutely no clue what they're doing, so they
just take an existing controller, make it bigger, stick some more buttons on pretty much at random, and
frequently add on poorly angled handles. Shame.
I'll still take it over Grandia's jungles.
I finally broke down and picked up a copy of Shadow Hearts: Covenant
after hearing so many people ranting and raving about how great it is.
I'm about 5 1/2 hours in, though, and I'm really not enjoying it so
far. I went through abandoned subway tunnels, an abandoned wine
cellar, and I just got to my next dungeon: an abandoned mine!
I've been forcing myself to play so far, and I wanted to know: does it
get better any time soon? Why do RPGs always have so many boring
filler dungeons? And most importantly: how many variations of
"generic abandoned underground tunnels" is this game going to make me
From that point out you start seeing a lot more variety actually. To be fair though, where do you expect
weird monsters to hang out in a fairly modern real world setting? There's only so many sorts of shadowy
corridors people never enter.
As for the abundance of pointless dungeons in RPGs, they are there for two reasons. A- To bloat play time.
B- Because, once upon a time, exploring new dungeons was, you know, the entire point of playing an RPG
to begin with.
The Last Laugh:
Huh. OK, so I didn't have to cut things short after all. Spiffy. Still need sleep though.
Googleshng "Wave'o'babies..." @rpgamer.com