Wednesday, July 18, 2012

It reminds me of grade school

Tales of Graces f made two important jumps last night. First, the douchbag kid got someone killed, realized he was a douchbag and ran off to join the military. He had become annoying even by JRPG standards and it was good to see him get his comeuppance. Secondly the number of things to do literally doubled following the a gap of seven years. Combat opened up with an entirely new second set of moves, there is this magical pressure cooker that I can drop random food items into have have them come back out again at just the right time, I can now embed weapons and armor with shards (then wait for the equipment to become tempered and pull the shards out again to use as items, the combine the gems into better gems, the put new shards into the same items) and there are finally a few side quests in the local tavern.

It is enough to make me wish I had an instruction book. Of the new mechanics only one does not perform as hoped: the side quests. There is no way to track them, and they are all fetch quests, so you either need to write down what you are supposed to bring back or be lucky enough to already have it. Neither of these is much fun, so finishing off these quests has been moved to the 'if it happens it happens' list. There is enough back tracking built into the main missions that stopping by the inn to see if my pile of junk matches up to what some else is looking for is all the effort they are going to get.

The story has yet to define a bad guy, or even a goal. Five or so hours in and it still feels like the opening credits are about to roll. Long RPG's need something to focus on to keep players coming back. Final Fantasy has usually managed this, with Sephiroth and Kefka being prime example, but it has also completely blown it (Final Fantasy IX - the final boss is fate. meh.) At least the main character's estranged father has just died, so something has happened that will lead to bigger things happening, but I am going to need some political intrigue soon or I may get bored.

...

I keep looking at the name and thinking that it is a typo. Why is the f lower case and what does it mean? Lost in translation, probably. 

Also, look, it's me on a rock again. I'm in the middle, not the guy on the far right.


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