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11321  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / What should I play next? on: July 25, 2005, 02:38:01 PM
The only one on that list I even remotely enjoyed is KotOR II (right up until the end), so I'll vote for that one.
11322  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Considering a DS. Any RPG's on the way? on: July 25, 2005, 02:35:01 PM
Quote from: "Belgedin"
Just to get them all in one place:

Final Fantasy 3
Secret of Mana (not much known yet)
Baten Kaitos DS
Xenosaga DS
Mistwalker SRPG (title not yet know)

And you can bet there'll be a new Fire Emblem as well

Sweet.  That justifies the purchase right there!
11323  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Considering a DS. Any RPG's on the way? on: July 24, 2005, 08:01:12 PM
I picked one up with Mario 64 (came bundled), Bomberman DS, Final Fantasy I & II, and Reviera.  Should keep me busy for a while.

Funny how when the DS was released, I thought people would have to be insane to buy one with the PSP coming out.  Turns out, I sold my PSP due to lack of any good games, and will probalby be pretty happy with my DS.  I think think the DS feels cheap as hell, but mine won't really be a portable system (I'll really only play it at home), so I'm not too worried about it.

Let the old-school RPG goodness commence!  smile
11324  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Considering a DS. Any RPG's on the way? on: July 24, 2005, 04:51:40 PM
Against my better judgement, I'm seriously considering getting a DS system.  I've purhcased and sold 2 GBA's now as well as a PSP, but the DS is starting to intrigue me.  And for $150, it makes more sense to me that the overpriced PSP.  

At this point, I'm mainly picking it up to play the GBA RPG's I've missed out on like Final Fantasy:  Dawn of Souls, Rivera, Fire Emblem, and to replay one of my all time favorites:  FFTA.  I haven't followed the DS news much, so are there any RPG's on the horizon for the DS?
11325  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Fable vs Jade Empire vs other rpg's on: July 23, 2005, 06:03:01 PM
This thread is the first I've heard of Fable - The Lost Chapters.   I'm guessing it's basically an expansion pack, right?
11326  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Fable vs Jade Empire vs other rpg's on: July 23, 2005, 05:24:03 PM
RPG pickings on the XBox are painfully slim.  The only other RPG I really enjoyed was Sudeki, but I'm in the minority with that one.  It has a very similar combat style to Fable, so if you enjoy one, you'll probably like the other.  It can be picked up pretty cheap as well (sub-$20).

EDIT:  There's some good Sudeki discussion in this thread.
11327  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Fable vs Jade Empire vs other rpg's on: July 23, 2005, 02:14:29 PM
Quote from: "Purge"
I'd recommend Jade Empire for one reason... Fable - The lost Chapters is coming out for PC and Xbox.  Once that has been released you should be able to pick up the original Fable for a song and a dance.

I just picked up Fable for $12 used.  Doubt it will get much cheaper than that.
11328  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Fable vs Jade Empire vs other rpg's on: July 23, 2005, 01:10:54 AM
I thought Fable was an absolute blast (playing it through for the second time right now), but was bored to tears with Jade Empire.   A lot of people were bitterly dissapointed in Fable because of the ridiculous amount of hype it received, mainly from the developer himself.  People were so vocal about their dissapointment that after the game was released, Peter Moleneaux actually issued an apology to gamers for not including many of the features he promised would be in the game.   IMO, if you accept Fable for what it is (a hack n slash with a fun social system), it can be a truly fun experience.  If you go in expecting the end-all-be-all of console RPG's (which it seems most people were), you will be bitterly dissapointed.

Jade Empire is just one of those games that simply didn't 'click' wth me.  I think the main reason was that I had just finished playing Knights of the Old Republic 2 the week before, and was pretty tired of the style.  Jade Empire simply felt like a asian themed mod for KotOR, and there didn't seem to be much special about it.  I felt no connection to the story or characters, the combat seemed slow and dull, and the graphics and voice work were simply 'meh'.  I know a lot of people around here loved JE, but it really did nothing for me.

Long story short...Fable > Jade Empire (ymmv)
11329  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Need some console advice on: July 20, 2005, 10:16:22 PM
Quote from: "Xmann"
ok guys i think i'm sold on an Xbox but i had one more question.  I'm considering maybe a used system from EB.  Anyone know how reliable these are and do they offer any type of warranty on them?  
Also, hows the NCAA football game for Xbox?  I'm trying to nail down a couple games to start with and i was thinking a football, driving, and adventure/rpg.  For those categories, whats the best bet?

Check out this thread for impressions of NCAA 06.  Initial impressions were great, but sketchy AI is taking it's toll.  

Football:  I sill think the best football game is ESPN 2k5
Racing:  Realistic racing – Project Gotham 2.  Arcade Racing – Burnout 3 (probably my favorite racing game ever)
Action/RPG:  If nothing else, you have to play Beyond Good and Evil and Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic (if you didn’t play the PC versions).  I also really enjoyed Fable, Sudeki, and Baldur’s Gate 2 for good hack-n-slash action.  Demon Stone and the LotR games are fun as well, if short.  Thief 3 is a fantastic game, but the PC version is far superior.  Star Wars Republic Commando is a fun rental that can be beaten in about 8 hours.  Fun SW squad-baed shooter action.

I’m sure you’ll get recommendations for Ninja Gaiden, Halo 2, and Jade Empire as well.  I disliked all three, but they’re very highly rated.
11330  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Bought NCAA 06... Impressions on: July 20, 2005, 03:33:44 PM
Quote from: "Captain Caveman"
Gratch, you should have just taken a knee.  :wink:

Tried, but couldn't find that option.
11331  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / RPGs, the next 5 months, and You on: July 20, 2005, 02:05:20 PM
Quote from: "Galadriels"
As for Romancing Saga Minstrel Song, I would say that the game is definitely very "Hardcore".  Though I am not sure whether it's because it's a remake of 1992 title.  Things that are considered the norm 15 years ago for RPG may be totally unacceptable today.

For one thing, the combat is very difficult since random encounter difficulty scales up along with your character's ability and the number of battle you fought.  So just as in Wizardry 8, every encounter can be your last.  You will also find that chained/back-to-back battle are very common in this game, since monsters that are in close proximity will "link-up" to form consecutive battles.  

Furthermore, you can lose characters PERMANENTLY in this game.  There is something called LP (Life Point) for each character, and they can be as low as 3 LP for one character.   You can't raise LP at all, only restore them.  It boggles my mind to find out that in order to escape from battle, you would need to use up your LP!!

However, the fact that this game sold 450,000 unit in 2 months and is the only RPG in top 10 best-seller (2005) should tell you that there may be more than that meets the eyes.  Surely not all Japanese are masochist who enjoy pains and frustration?   :wink:

This game does have a huge and very open-ended gameworld.  In fact so opened-ended that you will likely be lost after the 1st few hours.  The game have 8 different charcters each with different stories, though their path may intersect during the game.  So it's one of those monstrous games that will take you hundreds of hours to experience most of its contents.  Furthermore the graphics is lush and top-notch.  You can see it for yourself in the following Trailer and 30 second Commercial.

Well, that description just completely destroyed any interest I had in the game.  Thanks for saving me $50!  smile
11332  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Bought NCAA 06... Impressions on: July 20, 2005, 03:40:13 AM
Bleh.  I ran into some serious AI issues tonight.  Playing in the Liberty bowl as Utah (10-1, MWC Champs) vs. Memphis (9-3, C-USA champs).  I'm up 42-21 with 1:30 to go.  My running back has close to 250 yards and has been shredding the defense all game, so I'm on cruise control.  Run up the gut, cover the ball with both hands, repeat.  Suddenly he fumbles the ball on an ankle tackle and it's returned by a d-lineman who breaks 4 tackles on his way to the endzone.


I recover the onside kick with about 1:10 remaining.  Memphis only has one time-out, so I figure I'll run the same thing.  First play from scrimmage, even though I'm covering the ball and simply diving ahead, he fumbles again.  Mephis scoops it up, and - you guessed it - returns it for a touchdown.


I recover the onsides kick. There's still about 50 seconds remaining, so I need to run one play.  No way he'll fumble 3 in a row, right?


D-lineman broke up the handoff and caused a fumble.  Memphis has it on their own 40 with :40 seconds remaining and one time-out.  Time for a serious passing attack from their QB who has over 250 yards in the game, right?


Memphis proceeds to run 5 running plays in a row (at this point they have a total of 30 rushing yards in the game, mind you) from a no-huddle to run the clock out and lose by a touchdown.  Not a single pass attempt.

If they're going to program the AI to cheat and get back into the game, why on earth wouldn't they program it to at least play intelligently in a close game?  It really left me scratching my head.

The game is fun, but the more these AI issues raise their head, the less I enjoy it.  I'll probably play through another season, but I'm quickly losing my enthusiasm for NCAA '06.  frown
11333  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / What descriptions can kill your interest in a game? on: July 19, 2005, 02:19:44 AM
I was skimming through the latest Game Informer, and I decided there are a few words that, when used in a pre/review, completely kill my interest in a game.

"Action RPG" - I mostly play RPG's, and they are by far my favorite genre of game.  But I can count on one hand the number of "action RPG's" that I've enjoyed.  If I'm going to play an RPG, I much prefer traditional turn based battle systems.  If I know a game is going to require good twitch reflexes, I'm out.

"Frantic Action" - See above.  I lost my ability to twitch-game about 10 years ago.  I'm just horrible at it now.

"Open ended" - Sometimes (rarely) this can be a good thing, but I despise games that don't give a clear indicator of what to do next.  There's nothing I hate more than wandering around a game world with no clue as to how to progress the story.

"On line" - I know it's becoming very uncommon, but I am a solitary gamer.  I don't enjoy playing either with or against other people.

"Futuristic shooter" or "military shooter" - I'm not big on shooters in general, but add 'futuristic' or 'military' and you've completely lost my interest.

If I see any of the above words and/or descriptions in a review, I usually know it's a game I won't much enjoy.  Curious as to what other people's are.
11334  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Bought NCAA 06... Impressions on: July 18, 2005, 03:05:09 PM
Quote from: "GatorFavre"
Just had a nasty run-in with some comeback AI.  Very frustrating to be up big and all the sudden I cant run or pass and my defense starts getting torched  :x  I hate that shit in EA games.  If I wanted to get screwed out of a win, I'd put in NFL Blitz.

I ran into this last night as well.  My running back that was averaging 160 a game suddenly couldn't break a tackle or find a hole, my O-line turned into a seive, my receivers dropped 8 passes in one half (3 in the end zone), I threw 3 interceptions that were batted around twice before the AI came up with the catch, and the AI suddenly started making superhuman plays (receptions when triple teamed, breaking out of 4-person tackles, etc.).  I usually don't do it, but I actually shut the game off before finishing it.  Dissapointing. frown
11335  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / RPGs, the next 5 months, and You on: July 18, 2005, 02:58:35 PM
Dragon Quest VIII - I'm tenatively excited about DQ8, but I'll wait on reviews.  I haven't liked any of the other DQ games, but this one looks like it has potential.

Radiata Stories - I have yet to even remotely enjoy a Tri-Ace game (yes, that includes Valkyrie Profile), so I'll most likely skip this one.

Makai Kingdom  - Don't know much about it.  Looks like I need to do some research today.

Kingdom Heart II - Are these still considered RPG's?  I despised everything about the first KH, so I'm sure I'll skip this one.

Digital Devil Saga II - I really want to give it a shot, but only if they fix the ridiculous encounter rate that killed the first game.  That game was so close to being one of my favorites.  From what I've heard, DDS II is more stor-oriented, which would be a very good thing.  The incredible story is the highlight of DDS.

Magna Carta: Tears of Blood - Definately interested for the SH similarities, if nothing else.  It certainly looks cool, and I'm sure I'll give it a shot.
11336  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga Impressions! (pg. 2) on: July 16, 2005, 05:36:48 PM
SoA = Skies of Arcadia?  Funny you should mention that.

When I returned it last night, the guy at Gamestop was bemoaning the fact that I didn't appreciate what a great game DDS was.  I told him I'm adding it to a rare list of mine:  Games that were almost perfect, but had one critical design flaw that ruined what could have been an amazing game.  Skies of Arcadia is the only other game on that list.  frown
11337  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Bought NCAA 06... Impressions on: July 16, 2005, 02:23:05 PM
This is the first NCAA game I've played, and I was pretty impressed.  I can only compare it to the NFL 2K series, but the controls seemed a more responsive, the player animations smoother, and the AI a bit smarter.  My only major gripe so far is the seemingly very high turnover rate.  I fumbled the ball 4 times in one game, and was picked off twice on passes that bounced off at least 2 people before getting picked.  Seems a bit unrealistic.

I've always played the NFL games, but there's just something completely different when you're playing in a digital version of the stadium you spend every weekend at during the fall.   smile
11338  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga Impressions! (pg. 2) on: July 16, 2005, 02:16:31 PM
Well, I'm done with DDS.  As much as I really, really, really wanted to like it, I just could not stand that encounter rate.  About the time I had to backtrack through the Maribel base again, I had had enough.

I would still highly recommend it, but only to those who have a boatload of patience.  The art style, music, and story are all absolutely stellar, but the encounter rate ruins what was otherwise a fantastic game.  Too bad, really.  frown
11339  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Need some console advice on: July 15, 2005, 12:46:33 PM
I'll just echo what's been said.  

Sports, racing, action = X-Box
RPG, platformer = PS2

Keep in mind that console RPG and PC RPG are usually very different animals.  While I really enjoy both, I've known many PC gamers who despise most console RPG's, and vice versa.

Let us know which system you get and you'll get plenty of game suggestions.  Many of which are some of the lesser known gems that you might otherwise miss.  smile
11340  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / How is LotR for GBA? on: July 14, 2005, 12:09:54 AM
These reviews can tell you better than I ever could.  A 45% overall rating is a pretty good indicator.   FWIW, I thought the TTT GBA game was a pretty fun hack-n-slash, but the FotR game was just an absolute mess.
11341  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / a true TRAGEDY *NSFW* on: July 13, 2005, 11:50:03 PM
At the risk of sounding like a complete pig, the only thought that came to mind is:

Wow, great rack.
11342  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / How is LotR for GBA? on: July 13, 2005, 11:48:11 PM
Make sure you stay far, far away from the FotR game.  One of the absolute worst games I've ever played on any platform.
11343  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga Impressions! (pg. 2) on: July 12, 2005, 10:22:04 PM
Quote from: "EddieA"
Gratch - What level are your characters?  I rarely get ambushed, and the only reason I could guess you're getting ambushed so often is if you're at a low level compared to the enemies.  I think I was about level 20 when I finished the Citadel.

Serph is level 22, Heat and Argilla are 20.  They all just got to the point where they can equip 8 skills.  

Maybe I'm just unlucky.  frown
11344  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga Impressions! (pg. 2) on: July 12, 2005, 01:52:46 PM
Finally got through the Citadel (thanks for the Void Expel tip), and the story sequence was fantastic.  The small parts of the story that are revealed are almost balancing out the frustration so far.  We'll see how the next level goes.

One question:  Is there a stat or spell that will lessen the chances of my party getting "Ambushed - No time to transform"?  This happens on at lease 25 - 30% of my battles, and I have to waste a turn getting everybody to demon form.  When combined with an enemy that attacks first, it's pretty much an instant death.  Anything I can do to lessen the chances of it happening?
11345  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga Impressions! (pg. 2) on: July 11, 2005, 03:46:34 PM
Quote from: "Big Jake"
Any battle is just a lucky chance away from you being slaughtered.  

I think this is the main problem I have with the game so far. I played a couple more hours after I posted yesterday and damn near threw my controller through the screen.  I got transferred directly to the Solid’s citadel after the previous level, with no chance to heal, save, or visit a vendor.  The first 6 battles I encountered, I was ‘ambushed’, the enemy attacked first, and attacked by enemies that cast Poison Dart.  So not only did I barely escape the battle alive, I had to expend my meager supply of Dis-Poisons within the first 15 minutes in the dungeon.  Since status effects stay with you post-battle (another MAJOR gripe for me), and I didn’t have any spells that would get rid of poison, I was basically screwed.  I then slogged through the dungeon for nearly an hour (see my earlier post about save points) before finding any sort of save or restore point.  I’m fairly sure I’m hosed for the rest of the game, as I was forced to use almost all my items just to stay alive.

As much as I really want to like this game, it’s quickly becoming an exercise in frustration.  There are so many good aspects that are being overshadowed by the inconsistencies in the combat and encounter rate.  I have until Friday to return it, so I’ll play it through this week and see how it goes.  If it continues to be this frustrating, it’ll be back on the shelf Friday afternoon.  frown
11346  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga Impressions! (pg. 2) on: July 11, 2005, 01:19:45 AM
Live, long dead thread.  I command thee...LIVE!!  slywink

I put about 8 hours into SMT:  Nocturne, but didn't really like the whole demon recuiting game mechanic.  So I was hesitant to pick up DDS.  My Gamestop finally in a used copy of DDS on Friday, so I picked it up.  I've put in about 6 hours so far, and overall I really like it.  My one major gripe so far: could they possibly have set the encouter rate any f**king higher?!  Honestly, there are parts of the game where the encounter rate is simply ridiculous and starts to suck the fun out of what is otherwise a great game.  Fight a battle, take 3 steps, fight another battle, take 3 steps, rinse, repeat.  There are really no battles that you can just cruise through either (unless you're repeating previously cleared levels and far outlevel the enemies).  You have to stay on your toes or you'll find yourself quickly getting trounced by the horde of enemies.  I've also noticed that the save point system is really hit & miss.  The dungeons are huge, and sometimes you'll go ridiculously long stretches with no save or restore points.  Other times you'll have points right around the corner from each other.  It all seems very arbitrary.  They do a good job of letting you save before boss battles, but some of the dungeons are really tough to get through.

That being said, I really like the graphic style and the story (small bits that there are) is simply superb.  The characters are likeable and engaging, and the wide range of reactions to their situation makes things very interesting.  I'm glad to hear that DDS2 will be more story based, because that really is the strong point of this game.  I'd recommend it, but it certainly does take some patience to really get in to.
11347  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / what are you looking forward to? on: July 08, 2005, 06:31:36 PM
Wish there was more on my list, but for now its:

-  Burnout Revenge
-  Shadow of the Colossus
-  Dragon Quest VII (I'm cautiously anticipating this one.  I haven't liked any of the other Dragon Quest games, so I'll definately check out reviews)
-  Magna Carta
-  Final Fantasy XII
11348  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana Impressies on: July 06, 2005, 11:31:06 AM
Quote from: "RamPanther"
<Pointing finger accusingly> I WARNED you Gratch, but wouldn't listen.  Now you're a chump like the rest of us.

Yeah, yeah...I know.  At least they gave me $30 trade-in credit for it.
11349  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana Impressies on: July 05, 2005, 05:45:58 AM
Got through a couple hours today, and I am definately less than impressed. While I certainly dig the art style (in towns, not the world map), the been- there-done-that storyline and bland battle system are really making it tough to keep playing. The synthesis aspect is interesting, but I don't know that it will be enough to keep it going. I'll give it a couple more hours and hopefully it grabs me, but I'm not holding out much hope at this point.
11350  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / From the Front Page - Games ruined when nearly perfect! on: July 02, 2005, 09:36:24 PM
For me, Half Life 2 was anytime you had to get in a damn vehicle.  I couldn't control those things worth a crap, and it brought the game to a grinding halt every time one of those sections came up.
11351  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana Impressies on: July 01, 2005, 02:33:25 PM
Well, I wasn't crazy about Forza (racing games in which you're completely screwed if you make one tiny mistake aren't my idea of fun.  Burnout-style games are more my type.), so I'm going to swap it for Altilier Iris this afternoon.  Should have some impressions tonight.
11352  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GameSpot hands-on preview of Fable for PC on: June 30, 2005, 10:42:12 PM
I really enjoyed the X-Box version.  As long as you don't buy into the hype (most of which came from Moloneaux himself), and take it for what it is - a basic hack-n-slash with an interesting social system - it is a really entertaining game.  The ending is horrid, but I'm used to that in games nowadays.
11353  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / recommend good playstation 1 games on: June 30, 2005, 12:56:50 PM
99% of my favorite PS1 games were RPG's, but there were a few other gems:

-  Tenchu:  Stealth Assassins
-  Skullmonkeys
-  Rally Cross
-  Einhander
11354  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana Impressies on: June 30, 2005, 11:38:48 AM
Hmmm, I was debating between this or Forza.  I think I'll go with Forza and wait for a price drop on this one.
11355  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Are you in debt? on: June 29, 2005, 08:09:40 PM
Currently just CC debt and the mortgage, but I hope to have all the CC debt taken care of by September.  It would have been even sooner if not for all the damn car repairs.

We paid off Mrs. Gratch's car in May and got the title last week.  It's been a great car and hasn't needed many major repairs.  Since we got the title, however, we have had to replace the battery, the serpentine belt, 2 of the belt pulleys, 2 tires, and the car's computer.  I swear to God these things are pre-programmed to break down right when you pay for them. :evil:
11356  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Kong is coming... on: June 28, 2005, 11:34:52 AM
Quote from: "gameoverman"
Trailer 20+mb

Looks like fun, but nowhere near what I was hoping for.  Too much Jurassic Park in it for my taste.

My thoughts exactly.  My enthusiasm for KK dropped quite a few notches after seeing that trailer.
11357  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / FS/FT: Psychonauts for X-Box on: June 28, 2005, 03:38:32 AM
If nobody comes in with Forza (highest on the priority list), I'll take you up on that Dr. Jones.   Thanks!
11358  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / FS/FT: Psychonauts for X-Box on: June 28, 2005, 02:43:26 AM
Nothing there that caught my eye Mytocles.  Sorry.
11359  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / FS/FT: Psychonauts for X-Box on: June 28, 2005, 02:04:40 AM
Played it for a couple hours before realizing it wasn't really my thing.  Will sell it for $35 shipped, or looking to trade for:

-  Forza Motorsport (X-Box)
-  Destroy All Humans (X-Box)
-  Altilier Iris (long shot, but maybe someone will hate it right off when it's released tomorrow and want to trade)
-  Possibly Sims 2 (PC) (still debating on this one)

Or shoot me another offer for PC, XBox, or PS2.
11360  Non-Gaming / Trading Forum / Rage Must Sell/Trade!! on: June 27, 2005, 10:25:22 PM
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