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I've never played a Persona or SMT game, and I've only ever played one Fire Emblem game (too scarce or expensive too soon after release!). So, when I saw the initial trailers for this game, I was perhaps even more confused than most people. However, I was a little intrigued. I loved that it had a bright, colorful world and a generally happy vibe. I liked that the "dark" elements seemed "dark" in the way that Kingdom Hearts handles evil. Still, it was very difficult to get a sense for what the game was about and how it played.
Yesterday I watched the Treehouse Live coverage of the game and I was blown away!! It looks so fun! I love the creativity. I love how different it is but also familiar if you have been a fan of anime or just Japanese pop culture in general. I love that there is a central theme surrounding "performa," the life energy that fuels artistic performances like singing, playing music, dancing and acting. So cool!
I love how the world looks complex but simple to navigate and understand. I love how the art style is outlandishly cute and colorful but doesn't feel the need to lean on chibi/SD styles to do it.
For a little while, Kingdom Hearts was my favorite game; this is giving me a similar vibe in all the best ways. After yesterday's treehouse demo, this game rose to my top game of E3. Other games will likely be better made and .... make more sense. =P But, in terms of something that is new (at least to me) and still looks like a deep, legitimate effort? I'm very excited! The pessimist in me feels like now that I'm so interested they are going to cancel the localization. Because frankly, I can't believe a game whose central theme is something so fun and non-threatening like becoming a JPOP idol or an actor is coming to the west. Add in the stylish battle segments and cool mystical transformations and the ability to increase affinity between characters (that's in FE too, right?) and I find it super, super enticing!
... how alone am I in my excitement for this simultaneously wacky yet grounded game?
Damn, I just did a battle last night and I wonder if I did it wrong or what... but it was so loooooooong. I think it was nearly an hour It wasn't particularly hard though some attacks could wreck me if I wasn't careful and didn't plan ahead. I sure hope this isn't a sign of the coming battles.
Just completed Chapter 4, and in the process unlocked the next "thing that makes you exponentially more powerful" this time pertaining to sessions attacks. This might be the most complicated that SMT battles have ever gotten.
In persona titles, you can ignore knockdowns entirely and hit the battle-ffwd key throughout the game, out-levelling the elemental advantages of most enemies other than puzzle-battles.
In Strange Journey, Demon Co-Op while very useful early on, can be virtually ignored later on, especially if you keep a magic-heavy crew (or a crew that uses almighty skills such as Energy Drain, and Jihad which damage + debuff all enemies' every stat.
In SMT4, targetting weaknesses and preventing enemy-smirks is essential early on, but if you play your cards right then you can learn a skill that causes your demons to target enemy weaknesses upon the player activating auto-attack, removing much of the challenge, especially if your roster has a demon to face each element.
In Tokyo Mirage Sessions I haven't found the need to use the X-ffwd at all (yet). The game heavily rewards you if you choose to go for long sessions, especially against tough or rare monsters, having the audience throw bigger and bigger prizes at you mid-fight each time a new cast-member jumps in.
I think I'm in the final dungeon now so I'll finally wrap this one up I hope! Definitely picks up towards the end and becomes more interesting. Touma's quite strong with his skills and spear that I keep remaking for skill bonuses. I don't know how he was pulling off 1000+ damage critical session attacks at one point but I wasn't complaining!
Yeah I made it to the final battle and I'm playing on the hardest setting so this doesn't help but wow, this is a HAAAARD battle I really don't know what to do to get through it. I thought I had it down but nope... I'll either have to grind better weapons or figure out another strategy.
Beat it! Switched up my characters a bit and made it work with stacking buffs, debuffs on the enemy and effective healing + item usage. I enjoy a good challenge for a final battle but if that strategy wasn't gonna work, I'm not sure I would have kept at it haha. Overall it's a pretty great game though still many issues with it. Sidequests are mostly not all that fun. Characters grew on me though but that took a while. Battles, while fun and flashy, are way longer than they need to be due to the Session chains. They're a nice visual treat but really slow everything down. A speed up button would've been nice for these. But yeah, a great JRPG for fans of the genre. Definitely feels better than Xenoblade X.
I've actually kind of stalled once I had hit what-might-be the final chapter. Even though I'm playing through as thoroughly as possible and have crossed 100 hours, it still feels like this game is about to end all too early. All we can do is hope that Atlus want to "Level Up" their RPG craft again. http://imgur.com/a/KtSvF