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Xeogred
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by Xeogred Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:41 pm

Chocobo Racing and the Mysterious Dungeon games do look kind of neat.
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by noiseredux Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:14 am

My game was half and half. Sort of a bad game that I really liked.
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Exhuminator
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by Exhuminator Sat Feb 17, 2018 4:00 am

Well after 27 hours I finally beat Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings. It was good for a while, but the last 10% of the experience nose dived for me. Overall I'd give it a 7/10. I'll write a review at some point. Not now at 3AM.

Edit: And here's the review.
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by marurun Sun Feb 18, 2018 7:32 pm

Finally in world 10. Only a couple more to go. The monster is finally in line with the party again, so go me!
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by PartridgeSenpai Sun Feb 18, 2018 8:35 pm

Xeogred wrote:Chocobo Racing and the Mysterious Dungeon games do look kind of neat.


I played through most of Chocobo Racing earlier today. Only the last race left to go. I'm not sure if I'll stick with it, tbh. That game has some pretty serious design flaws that really hinder what could otherwise be a great game. All I'll say for now is that I couldn't recommend it to anyone in good conscience, so I'd think that the Mystery Dungeon games are likely a better investment of your time :lol:
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by PartridgeSenpai Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:22 pm

So I sat down and gave 45 minutes to the last story mode stage in Chocobo Racing and beat it. I wrote about it here in the beaten thread, but damn, that game is NOT good.

The power-up system is so freaking broken and the AI is so good at using it, it ruins what could otherwise be a great little kart racer. That's the first unrecommendable game I've written about in the beaten thread in quite a long time. I'm just glad it was short, or there's no way I would've bothered finishing it Xp
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by Exhuminator Mon Feb 19, 2018 1:02 am

I spent about thirty minutes with Chocobo Racing on PS1 tonight. It's basically like Final Fantasy flavored Mario Kart, except nowhere near as good as Mario Kart. The theme is there, and the graphics are decent. But the AI is unfairly difficult (to the point of cheating really), and friction physics are just bad. I think this game is intentionally difficult because there's not a lot of content, only a handful of tracks, and not a ton of racers. So Square was trying to make what was there last. It does have a cute story mode, but bleh. I wasn't having much fun, nor was I very impressed, so I'm done with it. I think I'm also going to tap out of this TR too. I spent 27 hours with FFXII:RW, and that's enough FF for me for a while. I hope more folks have fun with this TR theme though before the month ends.
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by PartridgeSenpai Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:26 am

Exhuminator wrote:I spent about thirty minutes with Chocobo Racing on PS1 tonight. It's basically like Final Fantasy flavored Mario Kart, except nowhere near as good as Mario Kart. The theme is there, and the graphics are decent. But the AI is unfairly difficult (to the point of cheating really), and friction physics are just bad. I think this game is intentionally difficult because there's not a lot of content, only a handful of tracks, and not a ton of racers. So Square was trying to make what was there last. It does have a cute story mode, but bleh. I wasn't having much fun, nor was I very impressed, so I'm done with it. I think I'm also going to tap out of this TR too. I spent 27 hours with FFXII:RW, and that's enough FF for me for a while. I hope more folks have fun with this TR theme though before the month ends.


The weird thing is that there are actually a LOT of tracks hidden behind repeated story mode completions. Like, half the tracks in the game (no joke) can only be seen and played by beating story mode 9 times. The game design behind that is just so shockingly stupid, I can only go along with a theory like yours that they were just embarrassed of how little content they had so they had to make the AI harder? Ain't not joke with that "to the point of cheating" bit though. Those bastards INSTANTLY use powerups, and the bullshit way the powerup system is set up doesn't help with that. There isn't any rubberbanding though, from what I could tell. I was good enough at not falling off in the final stage that I was actaully SUPER far ahead of the rest of the pack until I got hit with an ultima or two.
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by nullPointer Mon Feb 19, 2018 2:30 pm

Over the weekend I finally crossed the halfway point in Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions (at least if online sources are to be believed – I'm a few missions in to the third chapter). Time for some mid-game retrospective!

The story and dialogue continue to be a real highlight of the game. It's definitely some of the best I've seen in Final Fantasy, and it might even be among the best I've seen in a JRPG altogether. It does need to be said that at this point I'm starting to get into certain plot threads that follow the Final Fantasy philosophy of, "what's the point of a plot if not to be convoluted bordering on incomprehensible?" I know this statement seems at odds with my earlier praise, but in the case of FFT:WotL it really amounts to how much you enjoy digging into the lore. If you listen to all the tavern rumors, and occasionally dig into the in story archives you can follow what's going on fairly well. But if you just want to play the game with mere passing interest in story, you may soon find yourself buried under the weight of vaguely referenced characters, motivations, places, double crosses and the like. There's a lot going on here. I know I keep on saying it, but this is what Game of Thrones looks like when set against the backdrop of the PG friendly world of Final Fantasy (except unlike GoT, here you're only seeing events unfold from the perspective of a single character/narrator).

Mechanically … I still have some nitpicks with the game. It's mostly quality of life stuff, but at a certain point all these numerous little things start to feel like a weighty burden on an otherwise enjoyable game.

Some of this might boil down to the fact that the small screen real estate on the PSP doesn't always jive nicely with the isometric game perspective. Depending on the landscape, it can be hard to see what you're doing without rotating the landscape back and forth since the rotation is limited to 90 degree increments. In fact, the game can engage in some elaborate trolling in terms of landscape, particularly where it comes to targeting and areas of effect. First of all (and perhaps one of my biggest gripes) is that units can't occupy the same square occupied by a dead body (friend or foe regardless). This can lead to huge bottlenecks in confined areas, because at a certain point you're melee combatants are useless since they can't hit foes on the other side of fallen adversaries. At this point long range hitters are your only option. Dammit if I want to trample the dead as I create a mounting pile of bodies in my wake I should be able to do it!

Contours in the landscape will similarly cause issues with area of effect both in attacking and support functions. The very slightest differences in contour mean that your area of effect actions will not reach certain areas (and again the screen size of the PSP can make it difficult to see these differences). I've literally watched fallen party members slip into permadeath due to the fact that the landscape they occupied was at a slightly different grade than the party member attempting to resurrect them despite being on directly adjacent squares (and surrounded on all other sides by bodies). That's … dumb.

Permadeath is another aspect that seems tacked on to me especially in light of scenarios like the one I just described. I'm okay with permadeath as a concept, but not when the game makes it impossible for me to mitigate due to something as simple as overly restrictive mechanics. That's the very definition of trolling, not to mention that permadeath runs counter to basically the entirety of Final Fantasy.

And make no mistake, your party members will die. Due to the fact that random encounters scale based on your average(?) party level, sometimes random encounters will be more difficult than main storyline/boss battles! At this point in the game I find myself using resurrection abilities regularly during the grind, and there's simply no option to grind on slightly lower level foes.

Phew … so that was some bitching. But despite all of that, this game is still stringing me along. There's something very satisfying about gaining new jobs and abilities, mixing and matching to your liking in an attempt to develop an undefeatable super-squad. I'll definitely be making a run on the end-game, but based on my current time expended, I don't think it will happen before the end of the month.
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Re: Together Retro: Final Fantasy Spin-Offs

by nullPointer Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:41 pm

And another thing!
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There's another aspect of this game (FF Tactics: War of the Lions) that I find ... troubling. At some key points in the game you'll be drawn into 'multi-stage battles'. In other words you'll fight one battle, win, and then the game will prompt you to save immediately before launching you into the next battle. Often these take the form of 'boss battles' (or as close as this game comes to approximating boss battles), and as a result these are often some of the more difficult battles in the game. Keen observers may have already spotted the issue here. I'm not one who typically utilizes multiple save files for a single game. There are some exceptions, particularly when there's certain spot in a game that I want to replay, but as a general rule it's one game - one save file. But what happens when you win the first battle, only to find the second/third/whatever battle insurmountable? At this point it's not an option to back out and grind some more. You already saved in between battles. If you weren't using multiple save files you could literally find yourself X hours into an unwinnable game ... or at the very least you'd be relying on luck to scrape by in a game that seems to have a particularly vindictive RNG where it comes to screwing over the player.

This isn't something that's bitten me yet (keeping fingers crossed), but I've definitely adopted a strategy of backup save files just in case. I wish the game made some mention of this even as a quality of life concession to players. "It's advised to backup your save file before entering this battle!" At any rate, hopefully this post will serve as something of a public service announcement. I can only imagine it would be a pretty frustrating situation in which to find oneself.

This game, I tell ya.
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