Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Expected defeat

I finished Ni No Kuni over a week ago and have yet to say anything about the ending. This is not meant to be a condemnation, I was just busy being disappointed in the new Sly Cooper and actually following through with registering for UFGT9. For better or for worse, it stays very true to its JRPG roots. There is a false ending after the big bad is defeated. The real big bad shows up, there is a multi-section fight with no save points, you die the first time, repeat until the real last boss falls or the player gets fed up and walks away.

A good RPG final boss should kill you once. It should have an attack so ridiculous that there is no avoiding defeat the first time it is used. There should be a fairly obvious way to not get hit with it, but dying once is it to be expected. I have a hard time thinking of a traditional RPG that didn't kill me once. This is a by product of how quickly I run through games and how little tolerance I have for grinding, but I almost always win in the end.

No Knights of the Round. No maxed out characters. Just three under-leveled characters and the stubborn ability to die after thirty minutes of fighting and try again.

Ultimecia took 2 hours. I am not joking.

There is only one game I can remember getting to the very end and not finishing.

It was so awful that I tried maybe twice and gave up. That game wasn't very good anyway.

/sour grapes

Back to Ni No Kuni, the White Witch had an attack that killed off my whole team in one use if they weren't at full health. It got me once, I gave the game a nod, then dove into my back stock of healing items and succeeded on the second attempt. It was not the most memorable fight, that one goes to fighting the goddamn sun at the end of Digital Devil Saga 2, but it was better than fighting Fate at the end of Final Fantasy 9.

I should really stop name dropping and say something worthwhile.

Ni No Kuni never deviated from its saccharine take on the JRPG trope. I refuse to complain more than that because so few JRPGs come out anymore. It is a dying breed that I still enjoy, one that I doubt will make the leap to the new generation of systems. I may own a WiiU yet.  

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