• The site will be down for scheduled maintenance this Friday the 24th at 2AM PST / 5AM EST / 9AM UTC while we perform a software update. We expect this process to take up to 5 hours. Thank you for your understanding and patience. New features will be included.
  • Community Spotlight sign-ups are open once again for both Gaming and EtcetEra Hangout threads! If you want to shine a spotlight on your community, please register now.

Kiseki/Trails Community|OT|Familiar faces~, Zemurian places—SPOILERTAGS OR DIE!

Oct 27, 2017
3,065
After 90h of playtime, I just finished Second Chapter!

Today I resumed at the point where you had to go to Grancel but little did I know that an attack by Ouroboros ensued, really fun segment with a surprising return of Colonel Richard who held off his own pretty well with the help of Cid! Then we had to go Liber Ark! Quite a beautiful, abandoned place I made sure to swap to the proper party members to fight the proper Enforcers just for those extra bits of dialogue between characters. Seems like Estelle managed to get to Renne after we defeated her, truly the slap is the mightiest weapon to get a point across!

Weissman himself wasn't too bad, if anything Loewe gave me more trouble if only with how he tend to open a fight with his S-break which may or may not kill us. Even though I knew how the scene would play out, after defeating Weissman first phase, it was still touching especially how Estelle just felt sad she couldn't keep her promise and such, figured Joshua had fucked around with the stigma when he had to go someplace on his own aboard the Arseille.

The ending was pretty good, finally they kissed uninterrupted. Of course dad just casually fly by on Ragnard's back to save us from impending death, that made me laugh. My final party was Estelle, Joshua, Agate and Kloe. Normally I always brought Olivier whenever possible but I figured i'd make a change. Kevin was my go-to pick because he excelled in the tetracyclic towers but here he lacked the ATS power to one-shot most smaller mobs, which Kloe had 0 issues doing so I went with her.

Tomorrow, I shall begin Trails the 3rd and I look forward to it!
 
Last edited:
Oct 27, 2017
2,931
I'm frankly shocked you're going through these so fast. I lingered on SC for weeks, mostly because I would talk to every NPC after every story beat and hunted down every sidequest. Though the 90hrs playtime seems about right.
 
Mar 3, 2018
199
How did you get around the save state thing? Do you mean loading directly from a save? I forget what a save state is.

What do you recommend doing to get around it?
A save state is an emulator-created save that the user can create at any point in the game (like in the middle of battles or cutscenes). It's different from a regular save, which is made by using the save feature within the game itself. If you just save normally and load in-game saves, you should be fine.

Why would you need save states when every Trails game allows you to save anywhere?
You can use save states to make mini-games in the casino or fishing a whole lot easier, although it seems that some people just use save states instead of the regular ones, which is how I heard about this issue.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
I'm frankly shocked you're going through these so fast. I lingered on SC for weeks, mostly because I would talk to every NPC after every story beat and hunted down every sidequest. Though the 90hrs playtime seems about right.
Talking to every NPCs is also what i'm doing. With some exceptions, all my free time is pretty much dedicated to playing the trilogy because i'm so intrigued and into them. I've often said this but it's been a while since a serie grabbed me the same way The Legend of Heroes does.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
I began Trail in the Sky the 3rd and played up till the start of Chapter 3.
Game started strong with a cool intro of Kevin on a mission aboard the Lusitania, then the rest happened. The game is quite the departure from FC/SC structurally. Gone seems to be the various cities and NPCs and instead in place is some hub whose shop inventory update periodically. Same with sidequests where now it's pretty much just watching what happened to the characters in the half a year span between SC and 3rd. Someone said it's pretty much a game about the side stories and less about the main plot and I don't know how I feel about that. I wouldn't call it a side game, definitely not, but so far it's easily the weakest of the trilogy. They just chug party members at you, then off you go exploring till you fight the next big bad of the plane and get more party members. I highly doubt this structure changes later.

Makes me wonder if I would've been just fine going into CSIII without playing this one, so far it just feel like i'd miss on what the characters did between SC and 3rd and I don't know how much that comes into play in CSIII. I still like what I played up to this point and I look forward to see more of it but I don't have the same drive with it like I did with FC/SC.

Obviously this could all change by the time I make it to the end but those are my impressions after 10h.
 
Last edited:
May 31, 2018
547
I began Trail in the Sky the 3rd and played up till the start of Chapter 3.
Game started strong with a cool intro of Kevin on a mission aboard the Lusitania, then the rest happened. The game is quite the departure from FC/SC structurally. Gone seems to be the various cities and NPCs and instead in place is some hub whose shop inventory update periodically. Same with sidequests where now it's pretty much just watching what happened to the characters in the half a year span between SC and 3rd. Someone said it's pretty much a game about the side stories and less about the main plot and I don't know how I feel about that. I wouldn't call it a side game, definitely not, but so far it's easily the weakest of the trilogy. They just chug party members at you, then off you go exploring till you fight the next big bad of the plane and get more party members. I highly doubt this structure changes later.

Makes me wonder if I would've been just fine going into CSIII without playing this one, so far it just feel like i'd miss on what the characters did between SC and 3rd and I don't know how much that comes into play in CSIII. I still like what I played up to this point and I look forward to see more of it but I don't have the same drive with it like I did with FC/SC.
Ummm, no. You definitely want to finish Sky the 3rd before starting CS III.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
Ummm, no. You definitely want to finish Sky the 3rd before starting CS III.
Well I do intend to finish it anyway, I won't leave the trilogy unfinished. Those are just the impression i'm getting from playing it 10 or so hours. Naturally, my opinion of it could change by the end but so far, it's entertaining but yeah...

EDIT: Also I heard the consoles version were censored, I assume they're untouched on PC? I won't ask why but just to be sure.
 
May 31, 2018
547
It may be an odd format, but it's world building that Falcom really wanted out of the way. Zin's Star Door is certain to come back in the Calvard arc, as is another character's door who's yet to join. Kloe's Moon door leads into Olivier's Star Door which leads into Cold Steel I. Stuff from Tita's Moon Door also comes back in CS III. Star Door 2 (about the North Ambria incident) is a major plot point too. And Star Door 14? Hoo boy... Then there's all the church-related stuff. It's definitely much more than just "what did characters do after SC".

And yeah, Star Door 15 was censored to the point where roughly 80% of the scenes were cut. They did that to avoid a higher rating. Since PC games require no rating, the Door is completely intact in the PC version.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
It may be an odd format, but it's world building that Falcom really wanted out of the way. Zin's Star Door is certain to come back in the Calvard arc, as is another character's door who's yet to join. Kloe's Moon door leads into Olivier's Star Door which leads into Cold Steel I. Stuff from Tita's Moon Door also comes back in CS III. And Star Door 14? Hoo boy...

And yeah, Star Door 15 was censored to the point where roughly 80% of the scenes were cut. They did that to avoid a higher rating. Since PC games require no rating, the Door is completely intact in the PC version.
Gotcha!
True, true. Reading it that way it does have me curious and despite my seemingly negative first impressions I won't deny this whole thing has me super curious. Beside the characters side stories there's also
Kevin and, I assume Rie's,
personal story that you uncover as you progress. The former definitely has me curious the most...I just have to wrap my head around the slightly different format, there's still a lot of story to be told but it seem to be mostly kept minimal in the main story department and found more within the side contents. It's coming to this one after FC/SC almost back to back it's quite different to an extent.
 
Last edited:
May 31, 2018
547
Gotcha!
True, true. Reading it that way it does have me curious and despite my seemingly negative first impressions I won't deny this whole thing has me super curious. Beside the characters side stories there's also
Kevin and, I assume Rie's,
personal story that you uncover as you progress. The former definitely has me curious the most...I just have to wrap my head around the slightly different format, there's still a lot of story to be told but it seem to be mostly kept minimal in the main story department and found more within the side contents. It's coming to this one after FC/SC almost back to back it's quite different to an extent.
Speaking of Ries, did you notice that her fighting style and set of crafts is almost identical to a certain boss you fought in CS1? It's a coincidence of course. :P
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
Speaking of Ries, did you notice that her fighting style and set of crafts is almost identical to a certain boss you fought in CS1? It's a coincidence of course. :P
I, huh, didn't notice and now my brain is going wild trying to remember, there's...one I'm thinking about but that can't be right.. That's the thing with these big JRPG there's so much to take in...doesn't help I played 3 of them back to back so there's so much to process.

I really have to know lmao, not risking researching cause its a spoiler minefield. That or I'll revisit CS1 once im done with the trilogy, so I can pick up on those things I didn't react to in the past...yeah I'll do that.

Scarlet?
 
May 31, 2018
547
I, huh, didn't notice and now my brain is going wild trying to remember, there's...one I'm thinking about but that can't be right.. That's the thing with these big JRPG there's so much to take in...doesn't help I played 3 of them back to back so there's so much to process.

I really have to know lmao, not risking researching cause its a spoiler minefield. That or I'll revisit CS1 once im done with the trilogy, so I can pick up on those things I didn't react to in the past...yeah I'll do that.

Scarlet?
Yup.

Scarlet wields a templar sword just like Ries, she had a line-attack called "Dark Fencer" that's pretty much identical to Ries' Arc Fencer craft and Scarlet's S-craft Bloody Storm was a souped-up version of Ries' Thousand Sparrows/Infinity Sparrows craft where she splits her blade into pieces, has them tear through enemies and then has them reassemble.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
Yup.

Scarlet wields a templar sword just like Ries, she had a line-attack called "Dark Fencer" that's pretty much identical to Ries' Arc Fencer craft and Scarlet's S-craft Bloody Storm was a souped-up version of Ries' Thousand Sparrows/Infinity Sparrows craft where she splits her blade into pieces, has them tear through enemies and then has them reassemble.
Damn, it's TOTALLY A COINCIDENCE. ;)
 
Aug 22, 2018
780
It may be an odd format, but it's world building that Falcom really wanted out of the way. Zin's Star Door is certain to come back in the Calvard arc, as is another character's door who's yet to join. Kloe's Moon door leads into Olivier's Star Door which leads into Cold Steel I. Stuff from Tita's Moon Door also comes back in CS III. Star Door 2 (about the North Ambria incident) is a major plot point too. And Star Door 14? Hoo boy... Then there's all the church-related stuff. It's definitely much more than just "what did characters do after SC".

And yeah, Star Door 15 was censored to the point where roughly 80% of the scenes were cut. They did that to avoid a higher rating. Since PC games require no rating, the Door is completely intact in the PC version.
The door was pretty intense for LoH. Made me see a certain little girl in a whole new light. Probably the darkest the series has ever been, right?
 
Mar 3, 2018
199
I began Trail in the Sky the 3rd and played up till the start of Chapter 3.
Game started strong with a cool intro of Kevin on a mission aboard the Lusitania, then the rest happened. The game is quite the departure from FC/SC structurally. Gone seems to be the various cities and NPCs and instead in place is some hub whose shop inventory update periodically. Same with sidequests where now it's pretty much just watching what happened to the characters in the half a year span between SC and 3rd. Someone said it's pretty much a game about the side stories and less about the main plot and I don't know how I feel about that. I wouldn't call it a side game, definitely not, but so far it's easily the weakest of the trilogy. They just chug party members at you, then off you go exploring till you fight the next big bad of the plane and get more party members. I highly doubt this structure changes later.

Makes me wonder if I would've been just fine going into CSIII without playing this one, so far it just feel like i'd miss on what the characters did between SC and 3rd and I don't know how much that comes into play in CSIII. I still like what I played up to this point and I look forward to see more of it but I don't have the same drive with it like I did with FC/SC.

Obviously this could all change by the time I make it to the end but those are my impressions after 10h.

I'm quite a big fan of Sky 3 (even if I think the only Trails game worse than it is Sky 1), so I'll add some thoughts to these impressions. What I love most about the game's structure, aside from it being a change of pace that I welcome, is that it has, essentially, no missables (aside from an unnecessary super weapon for Anelace). The missables in the other Trails games are the bane of my existence, so I feel like Sky 3 gets rid of my greatest complaint about the series. Unfortunately, it loses the town NPCs, which I view as the series' greatest strength, so the absence of missables is offset. However, I don't think you've realized what's awesome about the game tossing an absurd number of party members at you, which is that the main characters end up sort of replacing the NPC dialogue, since you can talk to everyone who's not in your party in the Hermit's Garden (and their dialogue can change dramatically depending on who you put in your party). After you have ten or more party members, there is a lot of new character-building dialogue in the main hub after each story development. Also, the game isn't completely devoid of towns; a few of the Moon and Star Doors contain towns and NPC dialogue. If you'd only completed up to Chapter 2, you definitely have not seen the best that the Moon and Star Doors have to offer. In fact, you may have only seen the worst, as Moon Door 1, Part 1 is generally seen as the worst Moon or Star Door in the game. Many of the other doors are either more interactive, making them more engaging, or tell better stories than Moon Door 1, Part 1.

About the comment you heard on sidestories, I don't entirely agree. I think Sky 3 tells one of the better paced main plots in the series, in my opinion, and it comprises a fairly large part of the game. I also like how much control the player has over the pace; if you want to, you can focus almost exclusively on the main plot for 90% of the game, and then do all the sidestories at once (or never), or you can choose to regularly check out the various Doors that become available. My only complaint about its main plot is that I found its twists incredibly predictable, but I don't think being predictable is the same as being bad, by any means.

Personally, I'd say you'd probably be fine playing Cold Steel III, even if you skipped Sky 3 (I can't say for sure since I haven't played Cold Steel III). I didn't think the Erebonia stuff in Sky 3 suddenly gave me new insight into the Cold Steel games (I'd basically inferred what happened), and I imagine the same would be true of Tita's story. Instead, it's probably much more important to play Zero and Azure before Cold Steel 3, which I'm guessing you haven't done yet. Of course, there is one scene in Zero that works more effectively if Sky 3 has been played beforehand. In any case, I believe people should play Sky 3 because it's a great game in its own right. If you're only playing the game in order to understand the rest of the series, I don't think you're playing it with the right mindset, since that will make it harder to enjoy Sky 3 for what it is.
 
Aug 22, 2018
780
I'm quite a big fan of Sky 3 (even if I think the only Trails game worse than it is Sky 1), so I'll add some thoughts to these impressions. What I love most about the game's structure, aside from it being a change of pace that I welcome, is that it has, essentially, no missables (aside from an unnecessary super weapon for Anelace). The missables in the other Trails games are the bane of my existence, so I feel like Sky 3 gets rid of my greatest complaint about the series. Unfortunately, it loses the town NPCs, which I view as the series' greatest strength, so the absence of missables is offset. However, I don't think you've realized what's awesome about the game tossing an absurd number of party members at you, which is that the main characters end up sort of replacing the NPC dialogue, since you can talk to everyone who's not in your party in the Hermit's Garden (and their dialogue can change dramatically depending on who you put in your party). After you have ten or more party members, there is a lot of new character-building dialogue in the main hub after each story development. Also, the game isn't completely devoid of towns; a few of the Moon and Star Doors contain towns and NPC dialogue. If you'd only completed up to Chapter 2, you definitely have not seen the best that the Moon and Star Doors have to offer. In fact, you may have only seen the worst, as Moon Door 1, Part 1 is generally seen as the worst Moon or Star Door in the game. Many of the other doors are either more interactive, making them more engaging, or tell better stories than Moon Door 1, Part 1.

About the comment you heard on sidestories, I don't entirely agree. I think Sky 3 tells one of the better paced main plots in the series, in my opinion, and it comprises a fairly large part of the game. I also like how much control the player has over the pace; if you want to, you can focus almost exclusively on the main plot for 90% of the game, and then do all the sidestories at once (or never), or you can choose to regularly check out the various Doors that become available. My only complaint about its main plot is that I found its twists incredibly predictable, but I don't think being predictable is the same as being bad, by any means.

Personally, I'd say you'd probably be fine playing Cold Steel III, even if you skipped Sky 3 (I can't say for sure since I haven't played Cold Steel III). I didn't think the Erebonia stuff in Sky 3 suddenly gave me new insight into the Cold Steel games (I'd basically inferred what happened), and I imagine the same would be true of Tita's story. Instead, it's probably much more important to play Zero and Azure before Cold Steel 3, which I'm guessing you haven't done yet. Of course, there is one scene in Zero that works more effectively if Sky 3 has been played beforehand. In any case, I believe people should play Sky 3 because it's a great game in its own right. If you're only playing the game in order to understand the rest of the series, I don't think you're playing it with the right mindset, since that will make it harder to enjoy Sky 3 for what it is.
Crazy how The 3rd became my second fave of the Sky trilogy.

I still think the weakest entry in the entire LoH series is FC. It's a 50 hour prologue.

That said it's still very good. And the highlight for me is the reveal of a certain masked figure (that boss battle was a lot of fun).
 
Last edited:
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
I'm quite a big fan of Sky 3 (even if I think the only Trails game worse than it is Sky 1), so I'll add some thoughts to these impressions. What I love most about the game's structure, aside from it being a change of pace that I welcome, is that it has, essentially, no missables (aside from an unnecessary super weapon for Anelace). The missables in the other Trails games are the bane of my existence, so I feel like Sky 3 gets rid of my greatest complaint about the series. Unfortunately, it loses the town NPCs, which I view as the series' greatest strength, so the absence of missables is offset. However, I don't think you've realized what's awesome about the game tossing an absurd number of party members at you, which is that the main characters end up sort of replacing the NPC dialogue, since you can talk to everyone who's not in your party in the Hermit's Garden (and their dialogue can change dramatically depending on who you put in your party). After you have ten or more party members, there is a lot of new character-building dialogue in the main hub after each story development. Also, the game isn't completely devoid of towns; a few of the Moon and Star Doors contain towns and NPC dialogue. If you'd only completed up to Chapter 2, you definitely have not seen the best that the Moon and Star Doors have to offer. In fact, you may have only seen the worst, as Moon Door 1, Part 1 is generally seen as the worst Moon or Star Door in the game. Many of the other doors are either more interactive, making them more engaging, or tell better stories than Moon Door 1, Part 1.

About the comment you heard on sidestories, I don't entirely agree. I think Sky 3 tells one of the better paced main plots in the series, in my opinion, and it comprises a fairly large part of the game. I also like how much control the player has over the pace; if you want to, you can focus almost exclusively on the main plot for 90% of the game, and then do all the sidestories at once (or never), or you can choose to regularly check out the various Doors that become available. My only complaint about its main plot is that I found its twists incredibly predictable, but I don't think being predictable is the same as being bad, by any means.

Personally, I'd say you'd probably be fine playing Cold Steel III, even if you skipped Sky 3 (I can't say for sure since I haven't played Cold Steel III). I didn't think the Erebonia stuff in Sky 3 suddenly gave me new insight into the Cold Steel games (I'd basically inferred what happened), and I imagine the same would be true of Tita's story. Instead, it's probably much more important to play Zero and Azure before Cold Steel 3, which I'm guessing you haven't done yet. Of course, there is one scene in Zero that works more effectively if Sky 3 has been played beforehand. In any case, I believe people should play Sky 3 because it's a great game in its own right. If you're only playing the game in order to understand the rest of the series, I don't think you're playing it with the right mindset, since that will make it harder to enjoy Sky 3 for what it is.
Thanks for that post! I did notice the party members seem to replace the NPCs so I made sure to talk to them whenever story progress occured! The latest door I did was Joshua and Kloe where it covers a big banquet on the castle terrace and it was good fun seeing all these familiar faces. I also did the Capua bandits minigame for Josette which was good fun as well and finally the one with Mueller and Julia.

And nah, although I won't deny that hearing about CSIII and how it seem to require understanding of the previous titles of the series is what made me give the Sky trilogy a shot, once I started playing FC it didn't take me long to get engaged, if it was only playing them for the sake of playing them I wouldn't played them almost back to back. My current impressions of the 3rd is pretty much just after 10h and although they looked seemingly negative I still enjoyed said 10h. Now that i've read various opinions regarding my impressions it will be easier for me to wrap my head around it and enjoy it. Almost all of these opinions share something common regarding the side stories door for example and on a personal level i'm really curious about Kevin's story.
 
Last edited:

Morrigan

Armoring
Moderator
Oct 24, 2017
9,711
I enjoyed Trails 3rd, but the ridiculously "gamey" structure of the game kind of took me out of it a bit. I didn't think it was possible for a game to be too gamey, but that game changed my mind.

I still liked it a lot though, it's a fairly minor complaint overall.
 
Sep 24, 2018
154
I'm too lazy to actually put my thoughts into words and it'd be pretty exhausting having to defend the 3rd every time the topic came up, so I'm just gonna pull this out from now on instead lol
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,826
no argument at all on the importance of the lore and world building. Kevin and Ries story was also incredible, but that structure, just no.

The story segments were way too disjointed, and extremely long, the balance between combat and storytelling wasn't great, and for something I seem to be in the minority on, it was just way too easy compared to Sky 1 and 2
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,065
I'm too lazy to actually put my thoughts into words and it'd be pretty exhausting having to defend the 3rd every time the topic came up, so I'm just gonna pull this out from now on instead lol
It's kay you don't have to defend it anyway, in my case it's just the sudden change after playing FC/SC back to back but I still put 10h in it and still enjoyed my time with it, not once did I go "well this is boring". I promise!
 
Nov 7, 2017
196
I enjoyed Trails 3rd, but the ridiculously "gamey" structure of the game kind of took me out of it a bit. I didn't think it was possible for a game to be too gamey, but that game changed my mind.

I still liked it a lot though, it's a fairly minor complaint overall.
I've also have gripes with its gamey nature, although I wouldn't qualify it as a minor issue as for me it severly affects the storytelling.

The doors being entirely for the player's Benefit will always bother me, from both a pacing and storytelling standpoint, but I can live with it, it's not elegant, but the content itself is great. However, Kevin's and Ries story, the main story, as good as some of the individual elements are, has all the sense of build up botched by the gamey structure it follows. Trails is not a stranger to padding, but it is purposeful padding, always adding character moments, world building, and just adding to the build up for a more compelling pay off.

The 3rd, in my opinion, fails at this by reducing the build up to some lame taunts and hints after a completely pointless (storywise) dungeon segment that are there to basically have a game with a reasonable length but are entirely padding built on top of either recicled assets or very simplistic new ones, with characters that really don't belong in that story and are there just for fanservice and gameplay purposes (sure, the story content in the 3rd of certain three major characters needed to be told before continuing in Zero, but it's not organically built into what's ultimately just Kevin and Ries story).

The story is supposed to be about Kevin's journey facing his own demons and finding redemption, but before reaching chapter 7, as I said, there's nothing of that beyond a few hints and taunts from the two villains at the end of every chapter. What if every chapter's dungeon made Kevin face some part of his past, like chapter 7 gehena section does with his previous victims, instead of being either boring space hallways or recicled content with no meaning behind them beyond gameplay for the sake of gameplay? Phantasma as a setting allows for all this, but Falcom decided, either by choice or by necessity, to play it cheap.

I like the 3rd. Hell, it includes some of the best moments in the series (Estelle's final speech is just… inspired). But every time I play it its faults are more and more obvious. I've just recently finished my third "the 3rd" (heh) replay, and this time I didn't have much fun playing it, I've got to admit (and I absolutely adored my time playing FC a forth time and SC a third one). I don't have issues with it for breaking the formula or it being a dungeon crawler, it's just that I don't believe it's structure flows in a way I consider compelling, and the need to recicle assets comes off as, for the first time in the series for me, a problem.
 
Oct 25, 2017
335
3rd is da best. Gamey nature? I don't care. If in a Trails game the plot suddenly stopped so that a character could do a monologue under a spotlight, and a lot of the story was conveyed via metaphor, I'd still be totally down if the actual content behind it was good.
By comparison, the only things you have to get your head around is the fact that the doors in a literal sense aren't canon. Easy! Especially since it's already in a series where fights are done in turns, everyone is quite happy to start cooking in the final dungeon or whatever, and main characters frequently abandon their duties to talk to people for books and do sidequests. It's far from the most gamey thing in Trails, because Trails... is a videogame series.
(But also that sort of fourth wally story device is in all sorts of media, like theatre and television and books, where the narrative and the viewing/reading experience aren't quite the same thing for whatever reason. Fourth wall breaking to communicate info to the reader without breaking the actual narrative, and scenes that only make sense in a metaphorical context that should be applied the text of the characters involved, both aren't unheard narrative techniques, even if they're not super common. So to describe the doors as "gamey" is perhaps not doing the idea justice to begin with)
 
3rd is da best. Gamey nature? I don't care. If in a Trails game the plot suddenly stopped so that a character could do a monologue under a spotlight, and a lot of the story was conveyed via metaphor, I'd still be totally down if the actual content behind it was good.
By comparison, the only things you have to get your head around is the fact that the doors in a literal sense aren't canon. Easy! Especially since it's already in a series where fights are done in turns, everyone is quite happy to start cooking in the final dungeon or whatever, and main characters frequently abandon their duties to talk to people for books and do sidequests. It's far from the most gamey thing in Trails, because Trails... is a videogame series.
(But also that sort of fourth wally story device is in all sorts of media, like theatre and television and books, where the narrative and the viewing/reading experience aren't quite the same thing for whatever reason. Fourth wall breaking to communicate info to the reader without breaking the actual narrative, and scenes that only make sense in a metaphorical context that should be applied the text of the characters involved, both aren't unheard narrative techniques, even if they're not super common. So to describe the doors as "gamey" is perhaps not doing the idea justice to begin with)
And that’s that on that!
 
Oct 25, 2017
1,826
its not even the doors being gamey that makes them bad, its that its just a bad delivery system for a story. Its forced, in a series that has managed to tell so many interesting stories in an organic way, getting pieces fed to you in 1 hour long gameplay less segments that are just placed at basically random is just not an interesting way to tell the stories. It didnt help that most of the doors, while important, werent nearly as interesting as the main story once it got going.

Then the ones that were interesting, wouldve been way better if they were organically woven into the story that was being told overall. That definitely is not beyond falcom though, theyve done it in every other game in the series. Its just clear in 3rd that they had some stories they felt they needed to get out and decided on this method for getting them there.

That organic storytelling, world building, and pacing is why I love the series, and 3rd is just the lowest on the totem pole in all those categories.
 
Oct 25, 2017
250
I think the door's are pretty fucking interesting considering a decade later we're still contemplating how some of those doors are gonna play into future arcs. If a game's worldbuilding still has people talking and thinking about it a decade later, it obviously did something right.

I'd love to see it's structure come back some day since it allowed it to give world building and character development that FC/SC wishes it could've given to it's world and protagonists/side characters, but maybe with some better pacing and better designed dungeons.
 
Aug 22, 2018
780
I think the door's are pretty fucking interesting considering a decade later we're still contemplating how some of those doors are gonna play into future arcs. If a game's worldbuilding still has people talking and thinking about it a decade later, it obviously did something right.

I'd love to see it's structure come back some day since it allowed it to give world building and character development that FC/SC wishes it could've given to it's world and protagonists/side characters, but maybe with some better pacing and better designed dungeons.
Precisely. The vehicle in which the worldbuilding was done (the doors) was unorthodox but the content delivered. Still thinking about
what exactly that salt pillar is.
 
Oct 27, 2017
2,931
I just reach Mainz Village in Zero and have no idea how to advance this plot.

The party just arrived and cannot into the mayor’s office because he’s busy. What do I do to advance this?
I vaguely remember this part. You sure you talked with everybody in town? You might also need to examine the mine entrance but that's probably not required.
 
Mar 3, 2018
199
I think the door's are pretty fucking interesting considering a decade later we're still contemplating how some of those doors are gonna play into future arcs. If a game's worldbuilding still has people talking and thinking about it a decade later, it obviously did something right.

I'd love to see it's structure come back some day since it allowed it to give world building and character development that FC/SC wishes it could've given to it's world and protagonists/side characters, but maybe with some better pacing and better designed dungeons.
Yeah, this opinion is what I relate to. I think the use of the Doors is one of the most interesting ways of conveying a story that I've seen in any RPG. I haven't played any other game quite like it, and I appreciate its experimental nature. I especially like how one Door might be like a visual novel, while another might have the player exploring a quick, mini dungeon, and another one might have a ridiculous fishing contest narrative. However, what I like most about the Doors is how their unnatural presence (it wouldn't normally make sense to walk through a door and witness a flashback) adds to the strange atmosphere of Phantasma. I personally wouldn't care to see Falcom reuse the concept, since it would become rehashed then, but I found it effective for one game.

I disagree with ShadowSoldier89 about the Doors ruining the pace, as I think Sky 3 has the best pacing of any Trails game thus far. It is the only game in the series to tell a complete narrative in one game with a clear beginning and conclusion, and Sky 3 does so while also expanding on the series' lore and fleshing out the main characters of the Sky trilogy, serving as a good epilogue for some of these characters. Sky 3 also accomplishes these feats in potentially less than 50 hours. It doesn't have hour-long sections without gameplay, as most of the Doors are shorter than 20 minutes.

I just reach Mainz Village in Zero and have no idea how to advance this plot.

The party just arrived and cannot into the mayor’s office because he’s busy. What do I do to advance this?
Here's what I read from Zennvirus's walkthrough on GameFAQs (I put this information under spoilers, but it doesn't contain any plot spoilers):

Not much to do here. You can replentish Hp/Ep/Cp at the Inn, resuply at the store, but to continue you have to check the '!' mark at the Mayor's house on the eastern part of town. Once you do there will be a short scene. Now, what you have to do is enter ANY building (you can take this chance to use the Hotel) then get out and approach the Mayor's house. A scene will occur, then you can visit the local authority.

Basically, it seems like you need to enter any building and then approach the mayor's house again.
 
Nov 7, 2017
196
when it comes to kiseki falcom doesn't do pacing, unfortunately
I disagree strongly with that statement. The unrelenting willingness to slow things down, let things sink in, and focus on the little things is why I unconditionally love this series. I wouldn't be this invested into this series if they weren't paced the way they are.
 
Oct 30, 2017
1,276
I disagree strongly with that statement. The unrelenting willingness to slow things down, let things sink in, and focus on the little things is why I unconditionally love this series. I wouldn't be this invested into this series if they weren't paced the way they are.
bad pacing and slowness do not equal to the same, falcom can do slowness very well, but they also ruin their own pacing with boring filler. Just because they add some bits of lore in them doesn't make them good, eg. the tetracyclic towers in SC, the shrines in CS2, half CS4.
 
Nov 7, 2017
196
bad pacing and slowness do not equal to the same, falcom can do slowness very well, but they also ruin their own pacing with boring filler. Just because they add some bits of lore in them doesn't make them good, eg. the tetracyclic towers in SC, the shrines in CS2, half CS4.
The topic discussed was SC's chapter 8 though, which doesn't share the mold of those examples (don't know about CSIV). As I said before when I talked about the 3rd, Falcom is no stranger to padding, and yes, that includes the dungeon crawler segments that they usually have at some point in the narrative in their direct sequels. But Chapter 8 is completely different to that in purpose and execution. It's a final lap through Liberl where you directly see the effects of which has transpired, cram a bit more set up for events to come, and let the story take a last breather to focus on wrapping up some side stories and NPC plots. It's not flawless, it still has some problems, but it's far from a good example of Trails padding for the sake of padding, or butchering the pace. I'll definitely argue that chapter 8 is absolutely a net positive for pacing in the context of the narrative.
 
Oct 25, 2017
335
Some of the best parts of Trails are when nothing in particular is going on, yet there's a bunch of side stuff you can do, and main stuff you can read into, to uncover more lore and figure out what's going on in the background.
Some of the worst parts of Trails are when something *should* be going on, but there's a bunch side stuff to do, and drawn out main stuff to get through, before you're allowed to see what happens next.
The approach Trails takes to story telling is really both its greatest strength and greatest weakness.
SC chapter 8 is a complicated example to look at, but I think more than pacing the problem with that chapter is that
It's just not very fun. Half the cast is basically useless past a certain point, Tita gets special mention for *actually* being useless, and after the first half of the game skipping the traveling between regions because you've done that already, you're now doing that, again. There's a reason why most RPGs give you an airship or something past a certain point, apparently Falcom didn't the memo.
Not to say this approach isn't *interesting*. And finally being able to travel freely almost 2 full games in is nice. But I can't say I wasn't thankful when the final chapter kicked in properly. (Also I imagine it's much better with turbo mode, but I made the mistake of playing it at launch)
 
Oct 25, 2017
250
The worst parts of Trails is when the games slow themselves down right after a pretty huge moment, but in ways that make it feel like they're just padding the game with fetch quests. CS2 is by far my favorite American Trails game, but it's also the biggest offender of this where they could've used the slow moments to add so much more to the situation happening around them and instead you're
forging a new weapon to reach Valimar's and Rean's potential. Which in itself is a pretty cool goal to reach, but not really surrounded by any interesting gameplay segments or character banter, and only just some interesting diversions/side quests.
 
Oct 27, 2017
755
beat SC. god bless turbo mode
definitely my favorite trails game, outside of chapter 8 i was never bored. great cast too.
i think for me right now it goes SC > CS1 > CS2 > FC
FC was fucking boring for 80% of the game (basically everything except gracel).

now onto 3rd, and then zero and AO

can anybody fill me in about SC ending
the part with Kevin and Fool, will it be explained later?
 
Aug 22, 2018
780
beat SC. god bless turbo mode
definitely my favorite trails game, outside of chapter 8 i was never bored. great cast too.
i think for me right now it goes SC > CS1 > CS2 > FC
FC was fucking boring for 80% of the game (basically everything except gracel).

now onto 3rd, and then zero and AO
So glad I'm not the only one that thought FC was boring for most of the game. It's weird bc it was good, but it was doubtlessly boring.