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RPG Community |OT| Take the Epoch to a New Era

ara

Member
Oct 26, 2017
6,437
CS2 put a massive dampener on my CS3 hype and my expectations aren't that high, but I'm definitely checking it out soon. Probably not day one though, since I'm currently building up hype for Disco Elysium which has the potential to blow every other RPG straight outta the water.
 

Buckle

Member
Oct 27, 2017
18,885
Any thoughts on Citizens of Earth and Citizens of Space?

Both are on sale and I've had my eye on them for quite awhile. Feels like you can never have too many Earthbound inspired RPGs.
 

Zaber

Member
Sep 11, 2019
100
Any thoughts on Citizens of Earth and Citizens of Space?

Both are on sale and I've had my eye on them for quite awhile. Feels like you can never have too many Earthbound inspired RPGs.
In my opinion? A lot of grinding and if you want to do everything, you'll be backtracking. I beat it and I didn't hate it, but a recommendation to buy is something that I can't give. (Citizens of Earth).
 

Thores

Member
Oct 25, 2017
487
Any thoughts on Citizens of Earth and Citizens of Space?

Both are on sale and I've had my eye on them for quite awhile. Feels like you can never have too many Earthbound inspired RPGs.
I've only played Citizens of Earth, and the high concept is great, but I can't emphasize enough that your mileage will vary on the writing and the aesthetic. Honestly the humor didn't really land for me and something was always "off" about how the game felt.I liked the idea of recruiting a whole bunch of party members, each with distinctly different abilities, but I also barely unlocked any before I got burned out. I would definitely try watching some gameplay to see if it's your cup of tea before committing to a purchase.
 

emonk

Member
Sep 12, 2019
38
As we approach the midpoint of October and I start wrapping up my mini-blitz games, my thoughts turn to the upcoming blitz starting next month.

I’m really torn between starting some things I’ve wanted to play for a while (like the Yakuza series and Oath in Felghana) and picking some really long games that will probably take me the whole time to finish (Xenoblade Chronicles 2 or Witcher 3 fall into this category). So many games, so little time.
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
As we approach the midpoint of October and I start wrapping up my mini-blitz games, my thoughts turn to the upcoming blitz starting next month.

I’m really torn between starting some things I’ve wanted to play for a while (like the Yakuza series and Oath in Felghana) and picking some really long games that will probably take me the whole time to finish (Xenoblade Chronicles 2 or Witcher 3 fall into this category). So many games, so little time.
Getting a head start is a good idea and can also relieve some pressure near the end when you’re like 10 hours away with two days left. I also try to place longer games by themselves and surround them with shorter sub-40hr games.

I’m still piecing together my list but I have a vague idea.
 

nivorae

Member
Oct 30, 2017
1,590
my current list for next blitz is

[TABLE]
[TR]
[TD]Trails of Cold Steel III[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Dragon Quest IV[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Pokémon White 2[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Chrono Cross[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Terranigma[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]

though we'll see how far i get, CS3 takes the utmost priority, then besides that i don't know yet, what i do know though is that this will be the third blitz i'm going to start chrono cross :')
 

BlueOdin

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,610
My list for the next RPG Blitz looks probably like this:

  • Nioh Complete Edition
  • The Witcher 3: Heart of Stone and Blood & Wine
  • XCOM 2
  • Dragon Quest IV
  • Mother 3
If XCOM 2 doesn't count as a SRPG I'll find something else. It's not like I have no other games to play. For example VtM: Bloodlines which I don't see myself finishing for the Spooky blitz because I wasted time with Indivisible and now Disco Elysium is upon us.

The next RPG blitz also falls in the time of me writing my thesis. So I will probably spend a lot of time inside so I see myself at least finishing 3 of those.
 

Gio

Member
Oct 28, 2017
423
Manila
Getting a head start is a good idea and can also relieve some pressure near the end when you’re like 10 hours away with two days left. I also try to place longer games by themselves and surround them with shorter sub-40hr games.

I’m still piecing together my list but I have a vague idea.
I tend to do the same. I like to have one big headliner plus 4 shorter/already-in-progress games. For the upcoming season I've got Final Fantasy VIII penciled in as the core game so now I'm left to decide what the four support entries will be.
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
I tend to do the same. I like to have one big headliner plus 4 shorter/already-in-progress games. For the upcoming season I've got Final Fantasy VIII penciled in as the core game so now I'm left to decide what the four support entries will be.

Oh nice! Are you doing the remaster? The 3x for some of the wandering would certainly make it shorter. VIII is one of my favorites. It’s pretty divisive so I’m curious how you’ll feel about it.
 

Gio

Member
Oct 28, 2017
423
Manila
Oh nice! Are you doing the remaster? The 3x for some of the wandering would certainly make it shorter. VIII is one of my favorites. It’s pretty divisive so I’m curious how you’ll feel about it.
I'm actually gonna be playing the PS1 version on Vita/PS3, since I'm a bit of a purist lol. Ahhh I'm looking forward to diving into it and sharing my thoughts with everyone. I did play through the opening section recently to whet my appetite for November and i liked it a lot.
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
I'm actually gonna be playing the PS1 version on Vita/PS3, since I'm a bit of a purist lol. Ahhh I'm looking forward to diving into it and sharing my thoughts with everyone. I did play through the opening section recently to whet my appetite for November and i liked it a lot.
Oh good! The junction system can be a little obtuse but it’s pretty simple! If you have any questions, let us know. Certainly play however you like though, some people tend to tell new players to play in a particular way best meanf for replays.
 

Box of Kittens

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,896
Well my RPG Blitz turned out to be not so much a blitz as a crawl, but I did finally managed to beat one and only a couple weeks after the blitz ended. So, with that out of the way, let's discuss Dragon Quest VI.

I've been going through the series mostly in order (DQ5 being the exception as it was my first DQ). I knew DQ6 had its fair share of detractors even among DQ fans so I was somewhat curious to see how much I would enjoy it. By this point DQ has built up enough trust with me as a consistently high quality series that I didn't expect I'd dislike it, but I wasn't sure where it would end up in my mind relative to other DQs.

By and large the gameplay is what I've come to expect from DQ. It felt solid and well-balanced, with the usual DQ attention to detail. I really enjoy the process of working out ways to handle DQ battles efficiently, and the whole process of observation and experimentation that entails. More specifically to DQ6, it was very rewarding to poke around and follow the various hints from NPCs to progress, especially in light of the game's premise (more on that later). I enjoyed the game's sense of exploration as much as any DQ I've played so far and there was usually just the right amount to hinting to feel like I was being pointed in the right direction without coming across as handholding.. I found the job system to be a pleasant balance of customizability and simplicity. I only have two real complaints. One is that it felt maybe a little bit bloated. By the end of the game my characters all had pages and pages of abilities and it felt like a bit much. That having been said, most of those abilities are useful at least sometimes and bloated by DQ standards is still plenty lean compared to the typical RPG. My other complaint would be that once I unlocked the hybrid classes I pretty quickly reached a point where the game felt too easy, as some of those abilities can really trivialize most random battles and even bosses weren't dealing damage fast enough to outpace a single Hustle Dance each round. Fortunately things picked up again by the time I got to the final dungeon and battles started to become a bit more dangerous again.

I wound up using a fairly different strategy for the final boss compared to other DQ final bosses. Usually I've had one dedicated healer spamming the Sage's Stone with others prepared to offer backup healing as needed and then use whichever buffs and debuffs I find useful in light of the enemy's resistances, attack pattern, and whatnot.

Here I had two characters on healing duty instead (attacking on rounds when I didn't need that much healing), taking advantage of the ability to spam Hustle Dance without consuming MP. I didn't really end up using any buffs or debuffs at all, but instead relied on abilities like Hatchet Man and Scorch that could cut through enemy defenses, and having two heals going lessened the pain of taking the full brunt of attacks without Insulate or Kabuff to help out. I was also very aggressive with shuffling characters in and out of the wagon, so that whenever anyone was too low on HP I could move them back to safety (but still being healed by Hustle Dance) until they were ready to come back to the front lines. Once I took down both hands on the third form I used a couple of Kazapples to finish off the head.

Story wise the game didn't have as strong a central narrative nor as memorable of characters as compared to DQ4 or DQ5, but I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it regardless.

I thought the game took good advantage of the two worlds, both early on when used for mystery and later with vignettes that involved actions in the real world causing changes in the dream world and vice versa. As I alluded to earlier, I also liked how it tied into the game's sense of exploration to include the travel between the two worlds.

I definitely found DQ6 to be a worthy entry in the series, and I continue to appreciate how strong DQ manages to be each time. My ranking of the ones I've played so far based on my personal enjoyment of each entry goes DQ5 > DQ3 > DQ6 > DQ4 > DQ1 > DQ2. I look forward to giving DQ7 a try.
 
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Thores

Member
Oct 25, 2017
487
My tentative slate for the next Blitz:
  • Dragon Quest XI S
  • Final Fantasy IX
  • Vampyr
  • Suikoden
  • Little Town Hero or Cosmic Star Heroine
Suikoden and Vampyr have remained untouched by me for multiple Blitzes in a row now (Suikoden since the very first Blitz) so I want to at least crack them open this time. My Blitz track record hasn't been amazing, but trying to participate remains fun.

Do we know yet if Blitz 4 will have an "RPG Club" game again? I really liked that feature last time, it was a great excuse to start Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers (even if I didn't finish it).
 

Boddy

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,155
Currently my List looks something like this:
  • Mother 3
  • Trails of Cold Steel
  • Lost Odessey
  • Code Vein
  • Yakuza Kiwami 2
I lost a lot of progress in mother 3 when I tried to blitz for the first time, but still really want to play it.
Might be able to borrow a Xbox360 to play LO, but only for a short while, so I might not be able to finish it.
Other than that I will just keep working on Trails and Yakuza.
 

emonk

Member
Sep 12, 2019
38
Could someone give me a short summary of how the blitz work? Sorry if it's very obvious.
You pick five RPGs to play over a three month span. Every time you complete one you report it, and after the three months every completion gets you an entry in a raffle. There are typically three prizes and often some bonus stuff too.
 

Zaber

Member
Sep 11, 2019
100
You pick five RPGs to play over a three month span. Every time you complete one you report it, and after the three months every completion gets you an entry in a raffle. There are typically three prizes and often some bonus stuff too.
Cool. I'll think up 5 games in a day or two.
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
So I wrapped up Indivisible last night.



It's flawed with a lot of bizarre decisions, but I did really enjoy my time with it. It was fairly brief, maybe 20-25 hours, but I have no idea what my time actually is given it counts suspend time on PS4 as well so it thinks I have 140 hours. You can really see a lot of the influences from Metroidvanias and Valkyrie Profile, though it seems to just take a little bit of each - or at least it has a flawed understanding of them. They put a heavy emphasis on the platforming, unlike VP which uses it as a means to an end (though VP2 does have some fun puzzles.). There's a balancing act between long platforming sections and fights that I think they pull off pretty well. I've seen people have concerns about "3 minute fights", but that really isn't the case except for early on in the game where you're rather weak. I've seen mention of enemies taking too long to kill, but I feel thats because people were brute-forcing/headbutting their way through encounters. Some enemies will guard every attack, but it's easy enough to break their guard. Others are immune to magic, so simply switching your team up for the next encounter is encourage. The combat and exploration flow together quite well. While they're certainly tied together, I'll address them separately.

To start with platforming, they give you a lot of tools slowly rolled out over the course of the game. Mobility is high and your movements are swift. You've many tools at your disposal such as wall hangs, ceiling hangs, dashes, vaulting, air dashing, pogo-ing across spikes, breaking through floors, walls, and ceilings, changing deadly terrain into something to be utilized with your tools, warping to enemies, and more. The games platforming is a strong point. Many a time I'd approached an area and stared at it with no real idea how I was supposed to get up to somewhere, only to remember the tools I had. There are multiple ways to handle traversal across dangerous terrain at times as well, such as either jamming your spear into the ceiling and stabbing your way across or double air dashing or even getting a running start and pole vaulting into a pogo with your spear. The end of the game has you mixing up every single ability you have across a fairly lengthy final set of runs. They introduce obstacles and enemies that you can use to fight or help you get to the next area as well as pepper in some new ideas along the way. I only found myself frustrated a couple times, but that's because I was failing my jumps or trying to use a less effective method to cross a ravine full of spikes. While I'm no platformer expert, I do think it was quite solid with a lot of good ideas. It's never too stressful and when you fail or die you're just instantly reloaded just before the section. While this is great 99% of the time, it also resets the collectible you were trying to get and died recovering.

As its tied to the platforming, the level design is good (in a game sense) though it makes me want to pull my hair out (in a logic sense). Platformers are the main target of my criticism in regards to verisimilitude. The worlds never feel 'real' due to flying platforms, areas that are designed for specific characters, cities put in the middle of platforming challenges, and so on. Am I really supposed to believe that the populace of this city uses a 5-mile long highway with floating island jumps and booster pads? Or this castle really has pits of lava with only a fence to get over? How does anyone even live in this place? Indivisible is no different in some cases. Some of the cities have floors that are only accessible by doing a platforming puzzle. Seeing characters standing on the top of towers just telling you who their favorite singer is seems a little strange, though I suppose I can chalk it up to me just taking the *shortest* and *straightest* route through the city. Normal people would probably use stairs and side streets, but it was still noticable to me. However, putting that aside, I felt the level design was good, challenging, memorable, and a bit unique even if it defied general logic (which I probably shouldn't be trying to apply to a video game full of magic). One exhausting part part though is that you revisit the same areas repeatedly but with new tools. This ties into the Metroidvania aspect but still... I was a little bummed out that I was having to do the same platforming sections to get to the next part of the story even if I could air dash over half of the obstacles.

Onto combat - this is where the game caught my attention the most. Everything leading up to release just screamed Valkyrie Profile. This excited me greatly. Upon release (or more accurately, closer to it), I learned it was a bit more of its own thing. Rather than be a turn-based VP-esque game, your attacks have a recharge. You start with one attack for each character who is mapped to a face button and you grow stronger over time (usually through a story beat or an upgrade using a collectible called Ringsels.) As you get stronger, you get more attacks. We'll leave out the main character for a moment because she's a bit bizarre and lacking explanation. Every other character though has a particular play style that comes across in their personality. Dhar is a swordsman who uses the earth to power up his attacks, so he's a lot of wide sweeping attacks that he can charge with shards of the earth. In character he's a knight who fought for the villain but has now joined your side. Razmi is a lethargic and creepy recluse who likes burning things and loves the generally gross (e.g. eating bugs, wanting to live in slime), so she's quite slow but has a lot of fire-based attacks along with hexing/cursing enemies. Zebei is an archer who is boastful and proud, claiming to never miss his mark. In battle his attacks basically home in on the enemy and do great damage. His boasting is well deserved. I won't get into all the characters as there are twenty, but I'll touch on my favorites and my final team after covering the main character Ajna.

This is where some of the tutorialization and on-boarding is just *Bad*. The devs don't tell you how to play Ajna at all. At. ALL. Every character in the game has a brief 'how to play' page, but she gets nothing. They don't even tell you that you have three types of attacks, Up, Neutral, and Down. Whats worse is that Ajna, unlike the others, is constantly evolving her combat toolset much like her platforming one. You start out with your bare hands, but then you get an axe. Later on you find a bow. Then a spear. Then you boost your attack ability and can do 5-hit combos, but each direction is a different attack depending on the string you use. Yet, unless combat has started otherwise, she will *always* start with a low upward swing no matter what direction you press. So, if you're not paying attention, you may wiff your attack. It's difficult to get practice with Ajna because when you're finally comfortable with how to use her, she gets a new tool that throws the whole thing off again. That said, if you keep her as your mid-range/neutral attack who doesn't attack first, you can use her quite well. Starting with another character to bring airborne enemies down to her is the ideal way to let her shine, because then all of her attacks will hit. Axe swings, spear jabs, arrows, kicks and punches, and arrow detonations. Ajna's malleability does add some evolution and progression to a game that otherwise has little. The developers seem to apply fighting game logic of 'hitting the lab' to learn new combos, but the game is not as in-depth as an actual fighting game. There are no cancels or techs or charges or anything that you can use to drastically change your playstyle. You simply have different direction strings that you can mix, but nothing in the game really requires you to get that technical.

In combat, you've no skills or abilities. You have your attacks and then Iddhi (meter) moves which are usually a super / Soul Crush / Purify Weird Soul / Ougi / whatever. Most characters have multi-level specials, meaning if you burn two bars they do something different. If you burn three, they do something else. Yet this is never really mentioned outside of a "2" in the how to play screen. For example, Razmi's Level 1 special heals everyone for a generally pathetic amount. Her Level 3 does a high fire damage AoE to all enemies in range. Nothing is mentioned about this. Some characters lack a special *completely* such as Yan - an armless dancer who focuses on aerial juggles. On the note of juggles - keeping an enemy airborne increases the damage it takes, so juggling is encouraged. Other characters have no special at all but have a way to use Iddhi in other ways. Leilani, for example, cannot use a special attack but she can spend half of a level of the Iddhi bar to instantly break the enemies guard with her chainsaw sword. This is a fair trade off, but Yan is ultimately useless with no way to burn Iddhi (or meter burn, as they call it given they're fighting game devs.) Speaking of Yan and Leilani, there are many gimmick characters that seem like they're too busy to deal with. Latigo is a guy who uses a gunblade and can fire numerous times after his attack, but then he needs to reload. This breaks the flow of combos so I benched him quickly. My personal team was Ajna who was focusing on mid to low combos, Leilani who was focused on guard crushes and AoE, Kampan who was focused on knocking enemies out of the sky (and doing extremely high damage with her special), and Nuna who was focused on setting up traps on the battlefield. Note: Nuna is the best character in the game. She is so unfairly defensive that she can cancel boss attacks with her mines. She's also god damn adorable. She is my favorite by far.

As you level you are learning nothing new. I don't even know what stats increase other than HP because none of that is displayed. You see star ratings on what a character is good at. Example: Razmi has low speed and defense but high attack. Ajna is 3/5 stars in everything. As you get Ringsels, you can boost your number of attacks and your defense capabilities as mentioned before, but this does not change your star ratings. When you gear towards defense, you get an HP boost and your guarding becomes more beneficial. In this game, defense is active ala Ar Tonelico 2, though there is no beat/rhythm bar to let you prepare to defend. You need to watch the enemy. Guarding requires that Iddhi gauge mentioned before, but if you time it perfectly you get Iddhi back. When you boost your defense, you get Iddhi and HP back with perfect guards. Enemies will target different members at the same time, the entire group, or do AoE attacks that you'll need to guard against. While you can guard with the face buttons per character, there is a Guard All move (L1) that burns more Iddhi but lets you guard with everyone. You need to keep an eye on the enemies moves and learn the right time to guard, when to get out of a grab, and even how to just avoid their attacks in general (such as Nuna's mines or Leilani's dizzy move that leaves her out of the formation). The defense system is solid and makes combat active at all times, which keeps the flow going. Perfect Guarding giant multi-hit beams or huge attacks is a rewarding feeling, especially when doing so grants you more Iddhi. There were a number of times I've nailed Perfect Guards with only one character alive at low health, only to push my Iddhi gauge to max and revive everyone. It felt like I was just scraping by with my own skill and I loved it.

Moving on from combat onto the story - it's...nothing special. It's inspired by PS1-era JRPGs and platformers, so it's no surprise that the village burns down within about 3 minutes of the game starting due to a warlord who wants to destroy the world and make a new, perfect one. Seen it before? Of course you have. You're a Chosen One for Reasons and you have to go fight the bad guy. Thankfully, there is no Darkness or Special Sword MacGuffin. Yet there is a Sealed Ancient Evil. While they use a LOT of tropes that are tiresome, they do gain some points with me with the character interactions. Ajna is a rebellious girl who is ignorant, blunt, and hot-headed. Some of the cast call her stupid, but she takes zero offense it because she 'doesn't care about that stuff'. She just wants to do what is right and protect people, so she comes across as an idiot in some situations, but her heart is in the right place. She does get a bit too angry and ignores her friends advice, but there are story reasons for that which do get resolved. You do see her grow as a person and they handle her quite well. Even when it comes to facing her fathers killer. Throughout the game you're going from area to area, solving problems and meeting new people. There are some sub-stories that are quite good while others seem rather lacking. Some characters weave well into the plot while others just seem along for the ride. Tungar, specifically, was just a dude who found in jail who...only speaks in two scenes. If you're not using him in combat, it's easy to forget he even exists. The same can be said for some other characters, especially the gimmick ones. In reality, much like Valkyrie Profile, there is a 'main' cast and then a group of secondary support characters. Ajna, Razmi, Thorani, and Dhar tend to be the focus of most scenes and interactions, though occasionally characters like Ginseng will show up. It's quite unbalanced and in some cases feels rushed.

The soundtrack was good, though it didn't blow me away. It's by Kikuta, so fans of his works will recognize his style. I never heard a bad track (though one has a part that sounds too much like Mario) and it all flowed in very well. Nothing in particular really stood out to me aside from the final track, but that may be because I was so focused on everything else. Continuing on with audio, the voice work was impressive. Every character sounds like they look and vice versa. There were a few notable voice actors that I quite enjoy such as Matt Mercer, but the real gem for me was Debra Wilson (from MadTV) playing the Serpent Queen. She has such an iconic voice to me from growing up watching that stupid show (which I did enjoy). It was a nice little surprise to see her still active in the gaming scene. It was also nice to hear people other than the usual JRPG casts and I do think the voice cast was very inclusive. On the sound front, everything was fine. The audio work is quite good with effects having a nice strength to them. There's a nice 'thunk' to the axe hitting into walls, the impact of hits in combat feels weighty, and the soundtracks do help present a nice sense of atmosphere.

All that said, I do think it's a solid game that is a little dependent on your expectations going into it. I never backed the kickstarter back when it launched nor did I follow development. I put myself on blackout with only the occasional gif or short clip. It wasn't until about two weeks prior to launch when I started working on the OT that I got a lot more information. I know that people were waiting upwards of 4 years for it, so that may time into some of the disappointment. It's hard not to get excited when you see VALKYRIE PROFILE + METROIDVANIA WITH 2D HAND DRAWN ART AND ANIMATION BY THE CREATORS OF SKULLGIRLS, so I can see why some are let down by the game, especially after waiting years and devoting their own time and money to the project. As a huge VP fan, I was drawn to it immediately. While it's certainly not the level of VP nor does it have the complexity of tri-Ace games, it does its own things while wearing its influences on its sleeve and tries to form its own identity. Some don't consider it an RPG due to the lack of meaningful choices or abilities or growth but I'd disagree. Others consider it a turn-based fighting game, but I'd also disagree on that notion given the limited moves you have. It's certainly a hybrid game of platformer, rpg, action, and fighting game that offers up a nice little package for those who want to give it a fair shot at being something other than THAT NEW VP GAME.

With the devs being fighting game developers and with this being their first foray into the world of rpgs, you can really see where their priorities lie and how the budget was used. Some characters seemed rush, some story elements seemed to be hopped over, and some things that made games like VP great are completely absent. Yet it's ambitious and enjoyable. I'd love to see a sequel and see what they learn. The battle system is great and would certainly shine if they took a few more notes from tri-Ace and the platforming could use a bit of tweaking here and there. I'd really like to see what they do going forward.

To wrap it up, I think its worth playing but I'd suggest maybe waiting for a patch. The game could use some difficulty options, some smoothing out, better tutorials, and there are a number of characters both previously planned (Antoine and another were delayed) as well as DLC chars such as Shovel Knight and Red from Transistor coming. Below are a few simple pros/cons along with stuff that I found to be more 'neutral' that didn't really ruin my experience but should be noted either way.

Positives
+ Great characters
+ Beautiful art
+ Fun platforming
+ Solid music
+ Engaging and active battle system
+ Lots of options to set up your team

Neutral
~ You go through some areas 2-3 times, albeit with new abilities that make it faster.
~ No gear, equipment, or items.

Negatives
- Almost no tutorialization/on-boarding.
- Gimmick characters don't output the damage to match the effort needed to use them.
- No abilities/customization
- Story is riddled with PS1 JRPG tropes.
 
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emonk

Member
Sep 12, 2019
38
Do the updated blitz rules get posted here or in the Discord? I haven't really paid attention but I know there have been tweaks since my first blitz.
 
OP
OP
FiveSide

FiveSide

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,752
Luminaire Box of Kittens Great writeups on Indivisible and DQVI respectively, reading through them now. Still on the fence with Indivisible at the moment, but that's mostly because I want to replay Valkyrie Profile first.
Do the updated blitz rules get posted here or in the Discord? I haven't really paid attention but I know there have been tweaks since my first blitz.
This is a good point, we should probably get a post of the rules in their current form and then I can threadmark it for reference.
 

Aal-Vee

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,202
Canada
You pick five RPGs to play over a three month span. Every time you complete one you report it, and after the three months every completion gets you an entry in a raffle. There are typically three prizes and often some bonus stuff too.
Where do I find out more about this and the past prizes and stuff? Sounds fun!

Edit: Any new discord link? The ones I've tried were invalid.
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
For Season 4 of RPG Blitz, we're working on this seasons RPG Club theme. Please feel free to vote on up to 3 of the themes in the list here.

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For this month, rather than having a 6th option that counts as another entry, we'll make it so that you can opt-in to make one of your entries follow the theme and get a bonus entry upon completion (thus making it worth 2). We'll leave the preliminary voting up until tomorrow night and finalize the theme(s) on the 30th or 31st.

Additionally, the preliminary sheet is up if you want to throw your name and picks on there a little early. Don't worry about user order as we'll alphabetize it later. We're still finalizing a couple rules as well, but there won't be a drastic change or anything.

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Where do I find out more about this and the past prizes and stuff? Sounds fun!

Edit: Any new discord link? The ones I've tried were invalid.
For the general rules/idea -


For the discord -
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Aal-Vee

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,202
Canada
For Season 4 of RPG Blitz, we're working on this seasons RPG Club theme. Please feel free to vote on up to 3 of the themes in the list here.

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For this month, rather than having a 6th option that counts as another entry, we'll make it so that you can opt-in to make one of your entries follow the theme and get a bonus entry upon completion (thus making it worth 2). We'll leave the preliminary voting up until tomorrow night and finalize the theme(s) on the 30th or 31st.

Additionally, the preliminary sheet is up if you want to throw your name and picks on there a little early. Don't worry about user order as we'll alphabetize it later. We're still finalizing a couple rules as well, but there won't be a drastic change or anything.

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For the general rules/idea -


For the discord -
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Thanks for the info!
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
OK SO

For this seasons theme, we had a vote from a buncha options posted like...uh, 1 or 2 posts up.

RESULTS!



It looks like we'll be going with the Essentials List in a particular range!
We've been chatting it up some and wanted to go with something more along the lines of hidden gems/underdogs/overlooked. So, the two options are:

Ranks 75-101
  • Bravely Default
  • Dark Souls II
  • Divinity: Original Sin
  • Dragon Quest IV
  • Fallout
  • Final Fantasy V
  • Golden Sun
  • Grandia
  • Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals
  • Mass Effect 3
  • Octopath Traveler
  • Parasite Eve
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald
  • Radiant Historia
  • Shadow Hearts: Covenant
  • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
  • Shin Megami Tensei IV
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey
  • Suikoden
  • Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together
  • Tales of Symphonia
  • Tales of Vesperia
  • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings
  • Yakuza 0

Honorable Mentions / Runners-Up

  • Alpha Protocol
  • Baten Kaitos
  • Breath of Fire III
  • Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter
  • Diablo III
  • Dragon Age: Inquisition
  • Etrian Odyssey IV
  • Gothic II
  • Grandia II
  • Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep
  • Lost Odyssey
  • Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story
  • Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
  • Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch
  • Pokemon Black/White
  • Shining Force II
  • Shining Force III
  • South Park: Stick of Truth
  • Star Ocean: The Second Story
  • Suikoden III
  • Suikoden V
  • Trails of Cold Steel
  • The Witcher
  • Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE
  • Ys: The Oath in Felghana
You can vote here in the strawpoll~
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ara

Member
Oct 26, 2017
6,437
I can't remember if replays were fine for the blitz? I'm interested in replaying Dragon Age: Inquisition, which is there in the second category.
 

nivorae

Member
Oct 30, 2017
1,590
I can't remember if replays were fine for the blitz? I'm interested in replaying Dragon Age: Inquisition, which is there in the second category.
replays are fine in general, just don't abuse them for an entry in the raffles i guess (doing replays for speedplays)

But enjoy DA:I, are you going to do the DLC too? The game really shines with all three episodes covering different fields in a very good manner
 

nivorae

Member
Oct 30, 2017
1,590
Yeah, definitely. The important story DLC at least.
you mean Trespasser? While that one is very important to make DA:I feel worthwhile people don't mention The Descent enough for its huge lor eimplications, it drops bombs on the same level as Trespasser does. It also is where the combat difficulty shines very well with the enemies.
Jaws of Hakkon also is fun imo, where they applied all complaints towards the base game's map design and created the best map in game as a result.
 

ara

Member
Oct 26, 2017
6,437
you mean Trespasser? While that one is very important to make DA:I feel worthwhile people don't mention The Descent enough for its huge lor eimplications, it drops bombs on the same level as Trespasser does. It also is where the combat difficulty shines very well with the enemies.
Jaws of Hakkon also is fun imo, where they applied all complaints towards the base game's map design and created the best map in game as a result.
Trespasser, yeah. I'm not particularly up-to-date with my Dragon Age lore so I doubt I'd appreciate lore bombs that much, but I suppose I could check out the other DLC too cause why not.
 

Yata

Member
Feb 1, 2019
697
Spain
Just finished the original storyline for Ni No Kuni, dreading a little bit to continue. I love this game's original ending so, so much.

It's such an amazing game and easily one of the most memorable JRPGs ever. My main gripes are with the combat and the sidequests slowing down the pacing sometimes, and they do bring down the experience, but aside from that it's so good. An 8/10 for me.

Doubt I will post further thoughts when I finish it, because I find it much harder to articulate when I am just gushing. How I wish they made more like this.
 

Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147


Happy Friday!

Season 4 begins!
If you'd like to join us, please feel free to fill in your name on the sheet.
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You need to reply to this thread in order to see this content.
What's new?
Each season, we've loosened the rules a bit and adjusted things depending on feedback or just trends we've seen. Throughout season 3 we noticed more people leaving their lists with blank entries and being unable to decide what to put. Additionally, we had more requests for swaps (especially as the realization that some 80+ hour games suck up a lot of time), so we're loosening up.
  • Swaps are allowed, as are late additions. Just make a note or ask myself or anyone else involved in running this.
  • Games released prior to blitz are eligible, as usual, but there is a two week grace period. Games released in the first two weeks of November (up to Nov 15th) will be eligible.
  • RPG Club Theme returns! If you have no idea what the RPG Club was, just search "RPG Club Plays" on era and you'll see the group playthrough threads.
Last season, we had an optional 6th game that followed the theme of member favorites. Each member listed their favorite game and people chose from that pool as their sixth game for a bonus point.
With only 6 of these being finished (and a couple people finishing ALL 6), we realized that's a lot of extra time to put in just for a bonus.

So, much like the 6th game was optional, we're keeping the list at 5 games but you have the option to make one of your 5 follow the RPG Club Theme. Completing it will grant you a bonus entry into the raffle at the end.
This seasons RPG Club Theme is the Essential RPGs List - Entries 75 to 101.

  • Ranks 75-101
    • Bravely Default
    • Dark Souls II
    • Divinity: Original Sin
    • Dragon Quest IV
    • Fallout
    • Final Fantasy V
    • Golden Sun
    • Grandia
    • Horizon Zero Dawn
    • Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals
    • Mass Effect 3
    • Octopath Traveler
    • Parasite Eve
    • Pillars of Eternity
    • Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald
    • Radiant Historia
    • Shadow Hearts: Covenant
    • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
    • Shin Megami Tensei IV
    • Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor
    • Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey
    • Suikoden
    • Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together
    • Tales of Symphonia
    • Tales of Vesperia
    • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings
    • Yakuza 0

Season 4 will go until February 1st, 2020. If you have any questions, lemmie know~!
 

Sceptile

Member
Oct 27, 2017
534
I'm going through Witcher 3 right now, and as someone who thought 1 was ok and 2 was great, this feels like a more polished version of 2. I'm already seeing deck ideas for Gwent.

I have one question about the combat. Geralt periodically slows to a crawl after I cast a sign or roll, is this normal? This wasn't the case in 2.
 

Zaber

Member
Sep 11, 2019
100
I will try to join. If you can't pick games that you have already started, then I disqualify myself here and now.

My picks:

Underrail + Expedition Expansion
Ys VIII
Bravely Second
Persona 5
Dragon Quest XI
 
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Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
I will try to join. If you can't pick games that you have already started, then I disqualify myself here and now.

My picks:

Underrail + Expedition Expansion
Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones
Bravely Second
Persona 5
Dragon Quest XI
RPG Club game: Romancing SaGa 3
Nope, you can start with any progress. We've had people pickup games they dropped a while back with a couple hours left and push through to the end.
It's about completing games and helping to add structure to tackling your backlog (along with some a small prize incentive.)
The club game though is one of the five, rather than a sixth this time around. Additionally I don't think RS3 is on the 75-101 list.

EDIT: 5th column is where to put your club game if you're following the theme. We're marking the text in pink and putting eligible games in that column, so you might see your selections shift over slightly.
 
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Luminaire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,147
I'm going through Witcher 3 right now, and as someone who thought 1 was ok and 2 was great, this feels like a more polished version of 2. I'm already seeing deck ideas for Gwent.

I have one question about the combat. Geralt periodically slows to a crawl after I cast a sign or roll, is this normal? This wasn't the case in 2.
Isn't this because of his stamina?
 

Vic_Viper

Member
Oct 25, 2017
12,029


Happy Friday!

Season 4 begins!
If you'd like to join us, please feel free to fill in your name on the sheet.
[Hidden content]

What's new?

Each season, we've loosened the rules a bit and adjusted things depending on feedback or just trends we've seen. Throughout season 3 we noticed more people leaving their lists with blank entries and being unable to decide what to put. Additionally, we had more requests for swaps (especially as the realization that some 80+ hour games suck up a lot of time), so we're loosening up.
  • Swaps are allowed, as are late additions. Just make a note or ask myself or anyone else involved in running this.
  • Games released prior to blitz are eligible, as usual, but there is a two week grace period. Games released in the first two weeks of November (up to Nov 15th) will be eligible.
  • RPG Club Theme returns! If you have no idea what the RPG Club was, just search "RPG Club Plays" on era and you'll see the group playthrough threads.
Last season, we had an optional 6th game that followed the theme of member favorites. Each member listed their favorite game and people chose from that pool as their sixth game for a bonus point.
With only 6 of these being finished (and a couple people finishing ALL 6), we realized that's a lot of extra time to put in just for a bonus.

So, much like the 6th game was optional, we're keeping the list at 5 games but you have the option to make one of your 5 follow the RPG Club Theme. Completing it will grant you a bonus entry into the raffle at the end.
This seasons RPG Club Theme is the Essential RPGs List - Entries 75 to 101.

  • Ranks 75-101
    • Bravely Default
    • Dark Souls II
    • Divinity: Original Sin
    • Dragon Quest IV
    • Fallout
    • Final Fantasy V
    • Golden Sun
    • Grandia
    • Horizon Zero Dawn
    • Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals
    • Mass Effect 3
    • Octopath Traveler
    • Parasite Eve
    • Pillars of Eternity
    • Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald
    • Radiant Historia
    • Shadow Hearts: Covenant
    • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
    • Shin Megami Tensei IV
    • Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor
    • Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey
    • Suikoden
    • Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together
    • Tales of Symphonia
    • Tales of Vesperia
    • The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings
    • Yakuza 0

Season 4 will go until February 1st, 2020. If you have any questions, lemmie know~!
2 questions. If I want to participate, I need to pick at least 1 game from this list? Like, I want to get to Tales of Vesperia anyway, I just wanted to make sure thats how it worked.

Also, does Astral Chain count?
 

Boddy

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,155
2 questions. If I want to participate, I need to pick at least 1 game from this list? Like, I want to get to Tales of Vesperia anyway, I just wanted to make sure thats how it worked.
You don't have to pick one of these games, but it counts as 2 raffle entry at the end of the blitz if you finish it.
Put your RPG Club choice in the last slot to make clear which game you picked.
 

Vic_Viper

Member
Oct 25, 2017
12,029
Ok cool, thanks! I’ve always wanted to join in on one of these, just usually found out about them after it was too late.

My list right now looks like:
Astral Chain
Outer Worlds
Xenoblade 2: Torna
Judgement
Tales of Vesperia

I’m sure I’ll never be able to get through all of them, but I have already started the first 2. I need to get through this backlog before I add even more lol.
 

Zaber

Member
Sep 11, 2019
100
I will try to join. If you can't pick games that you have already started, then I disqualify myself here and now.

My picks:

Underrail + Expedition Expansion
Ys VIII
Bravely Second
Persona 5
Dragon Quest XI
I changed it up a bit. I won't participate in the RPG Club vcategory, because I have beaten all the games that I want from that list. I also removed Stygian: Reign of the Old Ones as I beat it today. I put Ys VIII, that I started today. My goal is to complete 3/5 games, but it won't be easy.

Romancing SaGa 3, SaGa: Scarlet Grace and Disco Elysium are all competing for my attention. There's also Alliance Alive HD and The Outher Worlds, but I'll only get those when they get discounted.
 

Bloodarmz

Member
Jul 11, 2018
330
I finally beat a game.



Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light - took me longer than I thought it was going to because I kept on getting demoralised after losing repeatedly to bosses (more on that in a bit). Final time was nearly 37 hours and all my characters were at lvl 52.

So I didn't realise when I started the game that this was a precursor to the style of combat that you see in the Bravely games and Octopath Traveller. Each character can hold up to 5 Action Points, and at the beginning of each turn you get 1AP. Simple actions such as attacking and using items cost a single AP, and can be used every turn without worry. Other actions require more AP, and the standard way of getting more is by defending - known as Boost - which is a free action and also generates 1AP. Higher AP actions include the big spells and attacks that target multiple enemies. CURIOUSLY, the game doesn't let you target enemies or allies, with everything happening automatically. Cure spells target the ally with the least health, and most melee attacks target the enemies in the front row. Ranged weapons have the stipulation that they will prioritise enemies in the back first, and spells also have a small note on how they target. I don't recall any situation where I was mad that the game did something I didn't expect, so I guess it works fine, and keeps battles quick and snappy.

I also didn't know that this game had a job system. Every job has an inherent trait and a single ability, and more abilities can be unlocked when levelling up that specific job (which only affects a single character, everyone's job is upgraded individually). For example, the White Mage's inherent trait makes white magic cost 1AP less than normal, so Cure costs a single AP instead of 2 and can be cast every turn, and the first ability is Healthgiver, which makes the next healing spell affect the whole party. Some of these traits synergise well with their abilities, whereas other jobs simply increase damage with certain weapons (Rangers deal bonus damage with bows, Dancer deals extra damage with daggers). There are some really nice ideas for jobs such as the Salve-Maker (can continuously use healing items without actually expending them), the Dancer (can restore the AP of other characters) and the Party Host (supports allies by psyching them up, a mechanic which raises stats and gives them a chance to combine physical attacks for more damage). By the way, the jobs are called Crowns because they change the character's appearance from the neck up, so the Bandit wears a mask, the Bard wears a flower crown, the Fighter wears a headband and the Dancer holds a rose in their mouth, which pairs well with the dancer outfit:


There's also the gem system which I'm not fully in love with. After you finish a battle, there is a chance to gain gems from the defeated enemy. There are 8 types ranging from rubies to diamonds, escalating in value. The first thing you can do with gems is sell them for money, but the gems are also used to upgrade Crowns. Every job can be upgraded 3 times, requiring more and more gems, and the higher levels require the more valuable gem types. But on top of that, the gems can also be used to upgrade weapons and armour. Having multiple uses of a resource is great but I found myself not having enough of the lower tier gems and so I stuck to the jobs I already had rather than experimenting.

It's the usual set up. Boy wakes up and goes to the castle and is told to rescue the princess. What threw me for a loop was when I was given the option to go with a magical investigation group or try to find out what happened to the first village and my party SPLIT UP. So throughout the beginning of the game, your four party members are separated, sometimes on their own, sometimes as a duo, and they don't reunite until they get to the final town, Spelvia. It's a cool moment since there is a big gap between the first time they fight as a four against the first boss, and when they find each other again there is a bit of an emotional moment.

The structure of the game allows for the characters to build a bond with each other one-on-one. Each of them has a flaw, explained in the opening screens where you name the characters and also in the manual (remember instruction manuals?). Aire is the stereotypical spoiled princess, Jusqua is a selfish loner and so on. The story beats have the characters face their flaws and when they come together in Spelvia they apologise for how they acted and become closer as friends. I think in some cases there could be added depth, such as Yunita. Poor girl gets abandoned TWICE during the game, both with the vague reasoning of her holding them back, but there isn't really a scene which shows her acting like dead weight.

Nearly all of the bosses in the first half of the game were a major difficulty spike where I had to give it a good few tries before I killed them. There's almost no room for error when deciding your actions, especially since you don't have access to a lot of Crowns and also have a small selection of equipment and spells. There's also a weird decision to push you back to town when dying to a boss rather than putting you back at the save point outside the boss room. When you die you lose half of a certain type of gem (e.g. topaz) so you could carry on, but it was much faster to just reset my DS and appear right back where the boss was. It would've been a better system to place you back at the dungeon save point, so you can experiment with classes and have one person be a freelancer (their job trait prevents the loss of gems).

The final boss, Chaos, gave me a lot of trouble, and I died to it's final form at least half-a-dozen times. Yesterday I spent a couple of hours retreating from the dungeon and grinding for gems so I could fully upgrade my shields, and then went back in to kill it on my first try. I ran out of rubies, emeralds, topaz' and sapphires which makes me wonder how much longer it would have taken me if I chose to upgrade more Crowns. Anyway, check out the final boss in all it's glory:


There's also a town called Invidia. It's filled with transistors and chips and the NPCs talk about things like aliasing and particle effects. There's also a preacher in the square who pontificates upon the advantages of raytracing.

I am a bit disappointed in the gem system because I really want to check out the higher abilities of other classes, but the amount of time it would take to grind out the required gems is too much for me. There's also about 7 Crowns that I didn't get but a handful of them requires me to complete 100 floor dungeons, which is daunting. But I really did enjoy the AP system and how you can stay out adventuring until you need to sell off the items in your inventory. I wish there was more scenes of the characters interacting with each other because seeing how they change from the beginning to the end was one of my favourite parts. The story manages to avoid the quaint, naive quality that some "friendship is power" stories tend to have by showing faults in the behaviour of the main characters and how they grow up. Another facet of this is the character of Rolan who has let his heart become dark after a tragedy, and cut himself off from the world, stewing in his own despair and fostering a sense of misanthropy. Seeing someone who has rejected human interaction and lives in solitude with a weakness at his core contrasts with the others making each other better as they travel together. The final chapter has the heroes realise that they draw strength from the people of the world. They believe themselves to be regular people who stood up when it counted, and believe others can do the same if the darkness ever comes back. The final scenes show the heroes travelling back to all the major locations, and it seems everyone is planning to build a better future by reaching out to the nations around them and uniting as one world.

Main theme:

The song from the first village, Horne, which gives me some Professor Layton vibes:

The song from the final dungeon: