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Author Topic: Legend of Heroes (PSP) Impressions  (Read 2050 times)
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Kevin Grey
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« on: November 22, 2005, 02:46:03 AM »

Picked up Legend of Heroes for the PSP today and after an hour and a half of play my impressions are incredibly favorable.

Legend of Heroes (LoH) is basically an "old-school" 16-bit style RPG for the PSP.  Background graphics are 3D with 2D character sprites (think high-res Final Fantasy Tactics) and they are gorgeous.  Everything is wonderfully fluid, spell effects are suitably eye catching, and there is plenty of detail.  Despite the seeming low level of technology used its probably one of the most visually appealing games I've played on the PSP.  And best of all- instantaneous load times!

The plot is ripped straight from the 16 bit RPGs of yore- a young man is separated from his sister at a very young age and goes on a quest to be reunited with her- but its very well presented.  By the end of the introductory segment I felt pretty attached to the main character and the small group of villagers that raise him.  The world itself seems very large and potentially interesting.

Combat is similar to Chrono-Trigger- its turn based but played from an overhead perspective where the characters will move about the playfield and range will be a factor.

Combat already seems to offer some interesting decisions.  For example, the main character is a melee fighter and can use the Taunt skill to draw enemies toward him and cause them to ignore the ranged character.  Meanwhile the ranged character can use his boomerang for standard ranged attacks or his "skill" which is to steal items from enemies.  

There is also a sort of limit break system with a bar that fills up as you deal damage and allows for super powerful attacks when full.

The world map also seems right out of Chrono Trigger- you can actually see the monsters roaming the area before getting into encounters with them.

The game also boasts a pet system which seems part tschotke(sp) but also has a direct effect on combat.  Early on you gain a dog as a pet and have the option to feed him, praise him, or scold him.  If the dog is "happy" when a combat initiates he may provide a defensive bonus to the party.  Conversely, if he is angry he might deal an attack against the enemies.  Haven't really scratched the surface of this area yet but looks like it could be a large time sink for those inclined.

Overall, the game seems just what the doctor ordered for anyone looking for a classic 16 bit RPG experience.

Also picked up Kingdom of Paradise.  Also favorable impressions (the graphics are stunning) but I'll wait to offer detailed impressions until I feel I have a better handle on that game.
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Vinda-Lou
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« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2005, 03:03:15 AM »

More details please (on both games) please!  It's a toss up between one of these rpgs and GTA or Burnout.  I'm leaning more toward the rpgs though.  How are the save systems in each?
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Kevin Grey
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« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2005, 03:06:10 AM »

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"
More details please (on both games) please!  It's a toss up between one of these rpgs and GTA or Burnout.  I'm leaning more toward the rpgs though.  How are the save systems in each?


Save systems in both are fantastic.  Both games offer save anywhere outside of combat.
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Vinda-Lou
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« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2005, 03:17:58 AM »

Cool about the save system.  I know you haven't played them for long, so bare with me, but I have a few more questions:

-I know they are both different, but which do you enjoy more so far?  

-Are there dungeons to explore in either one?  Puzzles to solve?

-Is Kingdom of Paradise mostly hack n slash, or is it deeper?

-Is either one of the games too childish?  LoH looks like a cutesy game, so does it play like that, or does it just look like that?

-What is the average yearly rainfall in the Amazon?

Thanks!
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Kevin Grey
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« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2005, 03:31:57 AM »

Heh, I'll do what I can smile

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"

-I know they are both different, but which do you enjoy more so far?  


Legend of Heroes.  Probably because its mechanics and presentation are instantly familiar to me.  Its a game that anyone who has every played a console RPG can pick up and grasp easily.  I still go back and play 16-bit RPGs so a "new" one really appeals to me.

Kingdom of Paradside definitely feels more unique and is not as instantly familiar.  Though that will of course be a strong selling point for some.  

Quote
-Are there dungeons to explore in either one?  Puzzles to solve?


LoH, I know, has dungeons.  In fact, from what I've read, they are a lot of the meat of the game.  And I believe there are some puzzles in these dungeons too.

KoP, I'm not sure about.  All of the areas I've been to so far (an hour played) are open areas.  Doesn't really seem like a puzzle type of game either, though I'm not speaking from specfiic knowledge or experience.

Quote
-Is Kingdom of Paradise mostly hack n slash, or is it deeper?


It starts off hack and slash with only one attack but it looks like it goes much deeper.  In fact what's holding me back from detailed impressions is that I don't really *get* KoP's combat system yet since its unique (involves making your own combos via learned scrolls or somesuch) and is steeped in Eastern mythology which takes me a little while to catch on.  I *really* need to go back and read the KoP manual now.

Combat in KoP is real time and very fluid and satisfying.  Enemies attack right on the exploration map- no switching to a different battle screen or anything.  

Quote
-Is either one of the games too childish?  LoH looks like a cutesy game, so does it play like that, or does it just look like that?


While LoH is indeed "cutesy" in presentation (what with the super deformed characters) it doesn't come off as childish to me.  You may be put off in the introductory scene where the main chracter looks to be about 10 years old but shortly time will pass and the bulk of the gameplay deals with the main character being seventeen.  

This stuff is kind of personal taste, but LoH doesn't seem any more childish than most games.  

KoP is definitely a bit more "realistic" in presentation.  

Quote
-What is the average yearly rainfall in the Amazon?


Uh, check google? smile

Quote
Thanks!


Sure thing!
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wonderpug
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« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2005, 04:33:53 AM »

16 bit RPG, I have to admit you're really tempting me to dust off my PSP.  If they had released this during an RPG drought, I think I'd even be able to overcome my fear of "over $30" portable games.

What's the length of LoH supposed to be?  And is there any character customization or some other mechanic that'd encourage playing it a 2nd time through?
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Kevin Grey
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« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2005, 04:36:11 AM »

No idea on the length.  Though based on the world map (which is pretty large) it looks like a good 20+ hours.  

So far I  haven't seen any character customization stuff.
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Nth Power
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« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2005, 11:11:05 AM »

Great impressions, Kevin!  I've been debating on picking one of these up since I really want an RPG on my PSP.
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« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2005, 12:49:51 PM »

also got both games, & am really enjoying loh (the simple mechanics & relatively fast pace provide a nice break from bouts of magna carta), but, pretty as it is, pretty quickly gave up on kop (couldn't get into the combat system)...

btw, i got the cat following me around in loh (not sure why, except i 'talked' to it more than the rabbit & dog?)...
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« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2005, 03:51:01 PM »

These are all great impressions.  I'm at work, with Websense on the web so I can't check game sites, but why is this game getting panned overall?  Maybe it's not, but I could have swore I saw a 55% at gamerankings.  Not as the average, but as a single score.  I am genuinely interested in buying this game and it sounds cool, but what is so bad or good about it?  Granted, they are just review sites, but I learned my lesson to at least listen to these sites.  SW Battlefront II for the psp review scores were ignored by me and now I regret it.  I know you guys have given good impressions so far and I don't know what I'm looking for in terms of info... I guess I'll wait to hear more from you guys as you play for longer.  

Side note:  I loved the Ultimas, never finished Baldur's Gate I or II, never got into the original Zelda, and found Golden Sun amusing.  So, (boring, cliched question alert) would I like this game?
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« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2005, 03:51:12 PM »

These are all great impressions.  I'm at work, with Websense on the web so I can't check game sites, but why is this game getting panned overall?  Maybe it's not, but I could have swore I saw a 55% at gamerankings.  Not as the average, but as a single score.  I am genuinely interested in buying this game and it sounds cool, but what is so bad or good about it?  Granted, they are just review sites, but I learned my lesson to at least listen to these sites.  SW Battlefront II for the psp review scores were ignored by me and now I regret it.  I know you guys have given good impressions so far and I don't know what I'm looking for in terms of info... I guess I'll wait to hear more from you guys as you play for longer.  

Side note:  I loved the Ultimas, never finished Baldur's Gate I or II, never got into the original Zelda, and found Golden Sun amusing.  So, (boring, cliched question alert) would I like this game?
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« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2005, 04:06:37 PM »

68% at Gamerankings.

Also the subtitle Tears of Vermillion reminds me of the old Genesis RPG Sword of Vermillion (I think that's what it was called).

Are they related in some way?
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« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2005, 04:09:08 PM »

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"
Maybe it's not, but I could have swore I saw a 55% at gamerankings.  Not as the average, but as a single score.


just read that review (ign), & the (obviously very young) person who wrote it seems to've been looking for something a little more 'grandiose' than a little bit of well-done rpg time-killing retro-fun - no, this game is not final fantasy xiii, & his/her criticisms of 'lack of strategic gameplay elements' are just plain nitpicky-bordering-on-moronic...

it's a simple, pretty, old-school rpg - period. i think this gamespy review is much more on the money...
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« Reply #13 on: November 22, 2005, 04:10:53 PM »

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"
These are all great impressions.  I'm at work, with Websense on the web so I can't check game sites, but why is this game getting panned overall?  Maybe it's not, but I could have swore I saw a 55% at gamerankings.  Not as the average, but as a single score.  I am genuinely interested in buying this game and it sounds cool, but what is so bad or good about it?  Granted, they are just review sites, but I learned my lesson to at least listen to these sites.



The story isn't very good.  The battle system is turn based.  The graphics are not "3D"

To be honest those are the things every negative review has hammered on.  To me they seemed like comments of people who really didn't like the genre anyway.

Don't get me wrong the game isn't "great" I would give it a "B" at best but it is of a style that many people don't like these days.
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Vinda-Lou
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« Reply #14 on: November 22, 2005, 06:15:51 PM »

Thanks guys.  I think I'm in the crowd of people who would enjoy it.  Now it's a toss up between this and GTA...  

Where is the cheat code in life that gives extra money?  Too many decisions.
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Kevin Grey
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« Reply #15 on: November 22, 2005, 08:49:24 PM »

Yeah its definitely "niche" and for those whose primary experience in RPGs has been the past generation probably feels like a step back.

Glad semiconcious mentioned the Gamespy review- I pretty much agree with everything they said.  

For reference, I'd recommend the game to anyone who enjoyed the GBA Golden Sun games (though I find LoH to be less childish than those).
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« Reply #16 on: November 22, 2005, 11:41:14 PM »

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"
Now it's a toss up between this and GTA...


just so happens i traded in gta for loh smile ...
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« Reply #17 on: November 23, 2005, 12:00:34 AM »

Are you happy so far with your decision?  Did you complete GTA or weren't interested?
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« Reply #18 on: November 23, 2005, 12:59:29 PM »

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"
Are you happy so far with your decision?  Did you complete GTA or weren't interested?


very happy. liberty city was my first gta, & the truly wretched targeting system that it seems fans of the series are able to just work around was too clunky for me (that & the fact that the story wasn't doing it for me either - maybe 'sandbox' games just aren't my thing?)...
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« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2005, 02:22:46 PM »

GTA is a great game, but I have to agree about the combat system. Truly awful. How it's getting 9/10 I don't know, as even as a huge fan of the genre I would give it 7/10. But then I'm stuck at the chainsaw section, and I'm fed up dying because of the control system. It's a love/hate feeling I get with all the GTAs, usually in the flying sections on the PC. Graphics are great, radio stations are fun and using customised tracks gives it the best soundtrack of any PSP game. Shame I can't listen to the mp3s though. I'd recommend it, but with huge caveats.

I also got Kingdom of Paradise, and it's lovely. It's a shame that it seems to be getting ignored, as it's really my type of game. Saving it for the holidays though. I'm thinking of picking up LoH and Raw vs Smackdown as well (or at least the wife will be as Xmas presents).
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« Reply #20 on: November 25, 2005, 04:46:12 PM »

Quote from: "Vinda-Lou"
Where is the cheat code in life that gives extra money?  Too many decisions.

Forget the code for money - I need one that gives me more time during the day. biggrin
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« Reply #21 on: November 25, 2005, 05:34:58 PM »

Quote from: "JayG"
Truly awful. How it's getting 9/10 I don't know, as even as a huge fan of the genre I would give it 7/10.


agreed. there seem to be these certain games where, even though serious flaws are noted/criticized, they somehow don't figure into the final score, & liberty city's definitely one of them...


we return you now to legend of heroes...
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