So after taking down Breath of Fire, I felt like I still had some JRPG in me. That's rare, usually I'm burned out by the genre by the time I'm done with one and need to take a break for a couple of months. But I still had energy for it and I thought I'd continue this series since it had been several years since I beat the original.
The first Phantasy Star was very primitive (though good) so I was interested to see what changes were made to this one. So far, the one big thing that makes my life easier is the dungeons are no longer in first person. They're still very maze-like, but much easier to get your bearings and learn where to go now.
Else than that, it seems very similar. Lots of random battles and grinding is very necessary at the outset. In combat, you can pick a group of enemies to attack but not a specific enemy. When you die, it's game over and you have to load your game. That makes dungeon crawling a stressful ordeal because going up to the next level is a risky choice. That makes strategy important, which I like, but there's also a lot of randomness to it. Bad luck like missing your attacks or the enemy landing a critical hit can really screw you over.
So far I've beaten the first dungeon. At first I wasn't using a map but after I couldn't figure out where to go I ended up looking at one. That will probably be my plan throughout since I'm too lazy to make my own map and I don't want to do too much aimless wandering.
In the second dungeon now and things were going fine until I encountered a new enemy type that just destroyed me. I guess I need to grind some more or perhaps just run away when I see those guys (although successfully running away is no guarantee).
I'm hoping as I progress and gain more levels and abilities the game will get a little more forgiving. That's generally the case with these old school RPGs I find. I have a feeling when I'm done with this one, assuming I can make it through, I will need one of those breaks from the genre.
I remember playing a bit of this game on Sonic's Ultimate Collection for the PS3. I played for a few hours and had no idea where to go, as I seemed to be underleveled no matter where I went. I like the style of these games, but they're a little too old-school RPG for me anymore.
I did like PS4 when we played it in the game club here.
Yeah, count me as just playing PS IV. I have this game in the Sega Genesis Collection on PS2 though, so I might give it a try someday. It'd help if we did an Epic Center on it or something. I liked IV, this game sounds a bit different though. The group enemy thing sounds reminiscent of the Dragon Quest games.
I played all 4 back when they were new. PS 2 came with a full strategy guide that was totally necessary, especially on the last dungeon. I enjoyed it back then, but it definitely very old school. I don't know if I'd enjoy it as much playing it for the first time now.
Done and done! Had to do some serious grinding at the end (Dark Force is a bitch) but it wasn't so bad. The ending was super mysterious and ambiguous. Perhaps I'll learn more in the next games. It's pretty cool that the earthlings are the villains though. Wasn't expecting that.
Certainly this was an easier game to make my way through than the original, although because I don't have the time on my hands that I did when I played that one, I was very dependent on a FAQ. I'd say this is probably the most I've ever used a FAQ in any game in my life, to be honest. Perhaps that lessens my achievement of beating it, but it's just a reality of the time I have for this hobby these days. And I'm glad I played it.
Probably won't be moving on to Phantasy Star III anytime too soon. I do want to get to Phantasy Star IV (and perhaps Phantasy Star Zero) before too long though.
Again though I don't feel too burned out by JRPGs to pick up another one in relatively short order. Hmmm... what next...
HA! No, I didn't. It taunts me while I'm on my computer (like now..), all dusty off to my left, sitting in its Nintendo case looking all SMUG. I'm stupid freakin' close though....I think. It's been a while, perhaps later this week I'll give it another whirl.
Have I found all of those Gems?? I'm not sure. The Orochi was pounding me mercilessly, might be stuck on that (or just cleared).
EDIT- And I've rented Dragon Warrior IV before. I'm so aware how awesome it is, haha. Great game. Its a benchmark RPG (especially on the NES, and I'd put it head to head with some SNES titles, too), if you ask me.