Demo Impressions Thread

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#1 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19388 posts) -

The demo for Bravely Default is up on the eShop so I decided to try it out. I hadn't heard much about the game outside of 8-4 Play impressions, so I went in with little knowledge about it. After playing the demo for about 40-50 minutes, I really enjoy this game.

It seems that some were confused about the systems initially, but I spent enough time messing around in menus before starting a battle that everything made sense from the get-go. I really like the job system and how you can basically assign any job to any party member at any time. I started out by making Tiz a knight, Agnès a black mage, Ringabel a valkyrie and Edea a swordmaster since that's what seemed to make sense according to their base stats and their starting equipment.

Then, related to the job system, I like how you can further customize a character's abilities by assigning any other job's ability set in addition to a character's primary job ability set. The equipment adds to the customization as well, where you can choose a character to dual wield certain weapons or not.

I'm not sure I'm totally sure how to use the Brave and Default battle systems yet, but I do understand how it's supposed to function. I've been Defaulting all of the characters at the beginning of a round to get at least an extra BP going into the next round and then initiating Brave to double my options in the next round. Defaulting seems especially good with the swordmaster class since it gives the extra BP, Defaulting is basically a "block" and because swordmasters have a chance to counter when hit by a physical attack.

The music's great, too. Really, everything about the game seems really good and there are only two things right now that bother me:

1. The emphasis on Street Pass to build up the town. I don't Street Pass with people much and I don't have anyone in my 3DS friend list, so the features that seem to be very much accelerated based on how many people you Street Pass with or how many people are on your friend list isn't something I'd be able to benefit from. Apparently, in the full game, you get a certain amount of people daily as a kind of "online Street Pass" with the game, so it might not be too bad.

2. This is the first game that I felt became slightly blurry because of playing on a 3DS XL instead of a normal 3DS. Especially present in the town, something about the background doesn't look right.

What do people who've played the demo think?

#2 Edited by Morningstar (2242 posts) -

Im playing the full release right now and loving it. It's the best final fantasy in a long time. Don't care much for the social features, the "summon a friend" thing is just stupid and microtransactions aren't my favorite thing either.

I actually think it looks gorgeous in 3D on my XL, it's the only 3DS game I've played with the 3D on.

And you are certainly right in that the music is fantastic =)

#3 Edited by IrrelevantJohn (1093 posts) -

@fluxwavez I have the original 3DS and the 2DS and it looks really off in the backgrounds. The 3D does make it a bit better to look at but it's still weird...

#4 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19388 posts) -

I actually think it looks gorgeous in 3D on my XL, it's the only 3DS game I've played with the 3D on.

Most of the game looks alright, but I felt the background really did look blurry in the initial town.

@fluxwavez I have the original 3DS and the 2DS and it looks really off in the backgrounds. The 3D does make it a bit better to look at but it's still weird...

Ah, so maybe it's not an XL issue but that's just how the art is.

#5 Posted by gike987 (1780 posts) -

The real game has a much better tutorial and difficulty curve which will make you get used to the Brave Default system. The game also seem balanced around just getting the online streetpasses and leaving the game on with the 3ds closed while doing other things so you don't really need to streetpass. All of the things the game want you to have friends for (abilink and summon friends) are not needed at all and will most likely make things to easy (at least so far I took a break from the game and haven't finished it but I haven't heard of anyone needing it).

#6 Edited by Aegon (5846 posts) -

Really liking it so far. Much more than I thought I would. Never played a game with a job system like this. It's all about manipulating the jobs.

#7 Posted by Fallen189 (5052 posts) -

The combat is good, to an extent. Even as far in as I am, it kinda devolves to having random combat being 4 braves on everyone and bursting everyone down. Boss fights are just default for 3, then brave for 4 and I usually never lose.

The story is alright, but the dialogue and VA are absolutely diabolical. It's a good game, but suffers from hyper JRPG syndrome where everyone is some caricature of a stereotype. It's still worth playing though, if not just to put more people onto 4 heroes of light

#8 Posted by HeyGuys (557 posts) -

Playing on the 3DS XL I also thought many parts of the game looked blurry, to the point of actually hurting my eyes a little. Also didn't dig the way the battles were presented but maybe it'll grow on me.

#9 Posted by Petiew (1362 posts) -

@fallen189: I immediately switched to Japanese voices when I started up the game since I remembered the trailer with the English voices they put out a while back. They seemed pretty awful. Japanese voices seem decent, I like Ringabel and Edea's the most. Tiz seems fairly generic.

#10 Edited by Quantris (350 posts) -

Just played about an hour of the demo. As demos go this seems like there is quite a bit to do which is nice (collect quests notwithstanding).

I really like the flexibility of the job system + support skills, which does let you mix and match your favorite abilities to an extent (also lets you add "cure" to anyone which means you don't have to have a devoted healer). And I haven't even unlocked any advanced abilities (jobs are kinda slow to level so far). Nice touch how each character has a unique look for each job. For now I went with: Tiz as Freelancer + Performer, Agnes as Red Mage + Knight (in retrospect not so great without leveling knight), Ringabel as Ninja + Valkyrie (since I kept the spear so far), and Edea as Swordmaster + White Mage (extra MP for heals). Swordmaster with two swords and the "nothing ventured" ability is pretty OP so far :)

Brave/default mechanic is nice, though I haven't gotten to "tough" enemies yet so pounding on brave is working so far. I *did* wipe against a big group of kobolds early on but that was pretty much me being unprepared in terms of buying spells (cast-all fire really helped the 2nd time). It would be nice if it would either reveal or let you modify the order your characters will act within the turn (this must be based on agility but it isn't surfaced during battle that I could see).

Another little thing I appreciated is that you can navigate the "party setup" submenus without having to back out of each one (e.g. you can go directly between equip, jobs, abilities, etc.). Amazingly some games still get that wrong!

EDIT: I also thought the texture in the town was a bit blurry; I think this is down to art style though maybe just an unfortunate decision of what resolution to store those assets. Text is also a bit annoying as the aliasing interacts poorly with the 3D (maybe maybe they could patch this for NA release?)

#11 Edited by Aegon (5846 posts) -

@quantris: Maybe you can answer this question. I also ran into the kobolds, but I didn't wipe since I was a little more prepared. One of my members was KO'd though. Nothing showed up for the kobold's weakness, but when I used thunder it said "weakpoint", so does an empty weakness thing mean that it's weak to all magic or am I missing something?

#12 Edited by Zeik (2783 posts) -

I've only had the chance to play it very very briefly, but what was there seemed potentially fun, even if I don't like how the demo throws you into the deep end with basically no explanation.

I think the game looks really nice, the animations seem especially good, but everything seems way too small on my normal 3DS. Like it was designed for consoles, or at least the XL, without really considering how it would look on smaller screens. It's not unplayable, but it is slightly unpleasant, and an odd oversight for S-E to make.

#13 Posted by Hunter5024 (5981 posts) -

Holy Shit this game is Final Fantasy 5!? *Goes to download demo*

#14 Posted by Zeik (2783 posts) -

Now that I've spent some more time with the demo and have a grasp of the mechanics I'm much more into it. I wasn't sure whether it would be a day 1 purchase for me, but if nothing else the mechanics seem solid enough to keep me interested. There seems to be a good amount of job synergy, which is exactly what I look for in a class system. I'm already loving my Ninja/Swordmaster combo.

#15 Posted by Steadying (1480 posts) -

The only thing that I find annoying so far is queuing up attacks. When you have 4 for each party member it just becomes a little tedious.

Aside from that, it's pretty cool. Graphics and frame rate are great. Not sure why it isn't called FF but whatever.

#16 Posted by Quantris (350 posts) -

@aegon said:

@quantris: Maybe you can answer this question. I also ran into the kobolds, but I didn't wipe since I was a little more prepared. One of my members was KO'd though. Nothing showed up for the kobold's weakness, but when I used thunder it said "weakpoint", so does an empty weakness thing mean that it's weak to all magic or am I missing something?

I think the different types of kobolds (regular, archer, slicer, etc) may have different weaknesses, so maybe you scanned one and attacked another? I know they definitely have different health totals (archers have the least hitpoints). Pretty sure that there are enemies that don't have a particular weakness.

The only thing that I find annoying so far is queuing up attacks. When you have 4 for each party member it just becomes a little tedious.

Aside from that, it's pretty cool. Graphics and frame rate are great. Not sure why it isn't called FF but whatever.

Yeah, I ended up doing this a lot in the demo so far since "default" hasn't really been needed yet. Pressing Y for "auto" is a quick way to do this (though sometimes it will throw in a cure if your healer acts early and someone needs it).

#17 Edited by JamesJeux007 (506 posts) -

I have spent about 13 hours on the demo to finish it 100% (I'm in Europe, we got the demo earlier) and DAMN I'm gonna have to pick up this game eventually. The Job system is implemented in such a way that you can get crazy synergies with the support abilities and it makes creating the party you want that much more fun. I ended up giving each of my party members a clear task and getting crazy bonuses thanks to that (Ninja with Utsusemi and the Comeback Kid/Multitask/Turn Tables support abilities is GODLY). Making your own party is just so much fun !

The Brave/Default system makes the combat feel a lot more tactical during boss fights, as the bosses themselves will use it so you have to be ready for it (I played on Hard, by the way). Knowing when to Brave and when to Default took me a little bit of time, but once you have gotten used to it, you can set up crazy combos and be ready for anything bosses will throw at you. On the flip side, it makes the random fights really trivial and kind of a grind. But at the same time, since you can increase combat speed and determine your encounter rate, I would just run around with +100% encounter rate and auto on until I got what I needed and switched it back to -100%. A silly solution to a crappy problem inherent to RPGs, but at least it makes the trips way less frustrating.

If you have a 3DS / 2DS and are planning on playing the demo, here are a few tips :

  • Each job as an affinity for certain types of weapons and gear. It is represented by the letter next to the equipment's icon. Remember to change your character's gear if you change their job.
  • You can change combat speed by pressing left or right on the D-Pad in combat. You can also press Y to go in auto mode. While in auto, your party will always repeat the last turn you did. You can quickly Brave or Default by using L and R. Finally, you can change your encounter rate in the Config - Difficulty menu.
  • You can change the time from day to night by simply waiting on the world map.
  • If you don't know where to go next, the flying fairy on the bottom screen will tell you.
  • Whoever is first (at the top of the list) in your party is the character that appears when you run around. ...Don't act like you don't care !
  • You can get up to 7 bonuses in the full game by playing the demo. You get 1 by starting the demo, 5 by defeating bosses (they are all part of the quest-line), and 1 by completely finishing the reconstruction of the city.
  • If you don't have anyone to StreetPass with, you can still get an extra villager by talking to the guy between the equipment shop and the spells shop during daytime. I don't know if you have to finish a quest first or if he gives you the extra villager from the start.

I wish this demo explained itself a little better.

Also, the soundtrack is fucking great.

#18 Posted by Turambar (6898 posts) -

After playing a bunch, it feels like FF5 but with a more interest core combat system. I am very okay with that.

#19 Posted by ArbitraryWater (12134 posts) -

After messing around with the demo for a few hours, I can conclude that this game is pretty much Final Fantasy V on crack, and given that FFV happens to be my favorite Final Fantasy game... things are looking good.

I'll definitely have to play on hard when I get the full game though; most random encounters can be "solved" by making everyone in your party attack 4 times like maniacs. Also I've been playing a lot of Etrian Odyssey and SMT IV recently and it feels weird playing games that aren't soul crushingly hard.

#20 Posted by Zeik (2783 posts) -

That whole streetpass thing seems like it could be a much bigger nuisance than I had originally thought. When I saw that it would take 10 hours to complete those tasks I figured it would be real time, so I could just turn off the game and do something else until time passes if I needed to, but it seems time only passes when you're actually playing, so that 10 hours is a pretty ridiculous number.

#21 Edited by Lyisa (393 posts) -

@zeik: The time passes if you close the screen, or it has for me anyway.

#22 Posted by Zeik (2783 posts) -

@lyisa: Yeah, I just noticed that. Better than nothing I guess.

#23 Posted by kishinfoulux (2530 posts) -

From what I've heard the actual game is great, but the demo is horrid. Not gonna bother with it anyways.

@zeik said:

That whole streetpass thing seems like it could be a much bigger nuisance than I had originally thought. When I saw that it would take 10 hours to complete those tasks I figured it would be real time, so I could just turn off the game and do something else until time passes if I needed to, but it seems time only passes when you're actually playing, so that 10 hours is a pretty ridiculous number.

This is my main concern with the game. There seems to be such a strong emphasis on street passing and that just bums me out.

#24 Posted by WebScud (118 posts) -

@jamesjeux007: Did you need to invest that much time in order to complete the story and unlock all the bonuses? Are the bonuses worth pursuing?

#25 Edited by WesternWizard (119 posts) -

I'm up to the forest and loving it so far. As others have said, it feels like they took FF5 and refined the job system from it and made it better/more modern in good ways. Which since that game is my favorite from a mechanics perspective, is perfect. I will be buying this game asap (not day 1 because I'll be busy that Friday).

As soon as I read enough to know it was FF5 mk II it was almost guaranteed, but the demo has assured me of what I'm getting into :)

#26 Posted by Marino (4766 posts) -

So, I did the beast liver quest and leveled up a few times out in the desert. Then I went to the cave out west. There's a guy in there that saves your game and says something like "it only gets worse from here," but all that's past him is a small room with no other exits. Am I missing something? Where should I be going next in general?

Staff
#27 Edited by WesternWizard (119 posts) -

There should be a character in that room that you walk up to, and is the boss of that dungeon.

Edit: Actually I wonder if you need to work through the quests to make that character appear in the room (there's another collection quest for mobs that appear at night first).

#28 Posted by Zeik (2783 posts) -

Yeah, after the beast liver quest is the beast tail quest. The whole demo is just taking quests from people in the main town, so once you turn one in look at the map for another blue exclamation and find the next quest giver.

#29 Posted by crithon (3456 posts) -

why is this not front page news. Been waiting for this game since the 3DS was launched. FF Heroes of Light is such an under rated RPG.

#30 Edited by crithon (3456 posts) -

this is totally FF Heroes of Light, except not with tutorials and I didn't need a FAQ to play this game. Man this looks amazing on 3DS, didn't know the music was such an UMPH Heroes of Light had this Midi Chip tune style this feels the same just more orchestrated and has a FF melody to it.

#31 Posted by Sergio (2262 posts) -

It sounds like I'm in the minority, because the demo makes me not want to play this game. They probably decided not to include any tutorial in the demo, saving it for the full release, and opted to just give you as much unique stuff as possible. Unfortunately, I don't have the time to dedicate to a demo that just says, "here, try to make sense of all of this." So instead of giving me a taste of something I might enjoy playing, it has chased me away in favor of other games I'd rather play, something I might actually enjoy.

#32 Posted by WesternWizard (119 posts) -

Well, for at least some of us like myself, we've seen most of these systems before so didn't need a tutorial. I can see how someone who isn't familiar with the style of job system having troubles with it and not finding it as interesting.

#33 Posted by Hunter5024 (5981 posts) -

So I spent most of the day at work playing this. It definitely looks solid, I enjoyed just about everything with like two exceptions. The first being that they opted to use that outdated Dragon Quest style of move selection, which I can't stand. You should choose your characters moves when they are about to do them, not all at once. Doing it all at once introduces an annoying element of luck that I've never liked, because it undermines the strategy. Prime example: "Oh my healer was slower than the boss, so now my mage is dead, and I wasted my healers entire turn and her MP on healing the wrong target. I guess I should've healed my mage last turn while she was at full health, just in case." The other issue I had was that the town stuff seems totally awesome, but basically unusable without streetpass. Unless of course you are planning on playing the game over a couple months and have no qualms about leaving the 3ds on for hours upon hours at a time.

Other than that though it seems pretty great! The presentation was great, chibi stuff has no right to look so good, and that music was excellent. The Job system will undoubtedly be a ton of fun, and the Brave Default thing seems like an interesting spin on turn based combat. Hopefully the story is enjoyable in some way as well.

#34 Posted by WesternWizard (119 posts) -

Luckily the full game lets you do internet friends, only the demo limits you to streetpass for that stuff (I agree it sucks, I've left my DS on the last 6 hours to blast out the rock that leads to the weapons and armor upgrades).

#35 Edited by JamesJeux007 (506 posts) -

@webscud: If you get every bonus you basically get 4 of each early game items (potions, hi-potions, phoenix downs, etc...) and a couple of early game gear. I wouldn't play the demo just for those items, as you can buy them anyway, but it does save you some money early on, when it is scarce. The one thing you get that is very useful in the full game is the villagers you get in the demo are transferred, and since rebuilding the town takes a long time and give you a ton of cool stuff, I would recommend doing that. The reason it took me so long is because I wanted to have a maxed party (lvl 20 and job lvl 4 in the demo) and I was playing on hard. If you put the game on normal or easy, it would take significantly less time to get 6 of the bonuses. The one that will take some time regardless is the one you get from completely rebuilding the town. But the bonus for doing that isn't really great anyway.

Also, I don't know about you guys, but I always have my 3DS on sleep and charging when I'm not using it, so just closing the 3DS while I'm doing something else while the town is building is not an issue (and you get SPs as well).

#36 Edited by Zeik (2783 posts) -

Fyi, there's a trick in the demo to get as many civilians as you want. There's an NPC who will give you one free civilian after doing a few missions, however, if you immediately quit back to the title screen it will save the civilian but not game progress, meaning you can keep doing this to get more civilians. And since you can transfer 20 of them into the full game it should give you a leg up and not have to worry about streetpassing. Those 10 hour progress bars are only like 10-20 minutes with 20 people.

@sergio: I kind of felt like that when I first started. The lack of direction is a bit overwhelming at first and a little off-putting, but if you take like 15-20 minutes to sit down and get comfortable with the mechanics it's pretty easy to grasp and a lot more enjoyable. Even if you don't play the demo though that shouldn't chase you away from the full product. The full game will obviously ease you in much smoother.

#37 Edited by Aegon (5846 posts) -

@zeik: That is awesome. I'll try that.

Edit: 21 villagers.

#38 Edited by FluxWaveZ (19388 posts) -

@zeik: Is this mission after the Minotaur boss? Hope I didn't miss it. It'd be really cool if I could get that to work so I wouldn't have to worry about Street Pass.

#39 Edited by Zeik (2783 posts) -

@fluxwavez: You can do it after the 3rd mission. It's not actually a mission, just a random NPC you talk to. You should still be able to do it if you haven't already.

#40 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19388 posts) -

@zeik: Alright, thanks. I'll wander around and see who I haven't talked to in town.

#41 Posted by Dixavd (1380 posts) -

@marino said:

So, I did the beast liver quest and leveled up a few times out in the desert. Then I went to the cave out west. There's a guy in there that saves your game and says something like "it only gets worse from here," but all that's past him is a small room with no other exits. Am I missing something? Where should I be going next in general?

If you're talking about the Demo then maybe I can help. It's been a couple weeks since I played it (when it came out in the EU) but as far as I remember, bosses don't appear until you have a quest to fight them. Talk to people in town (if you have to, everyone - including at night). If you don't already have a quest, they'll give you one. You can check by reading what the fairy says when you save (she's like Navi in that she'll be saying what you've been told to do). Then someone will point you in the direction of the next place to go. The place you describe with the saving merchant who says "it only gets worse from here" will in the future be just before a boss in a quest.

If I remember correctly, there are Three areas with mini-bosses in them (where you were is a place where one of these will spawn). There's also a main boss after those three and a final extra boss after that.

You'll know there's more to do until the Fairy on the save screen says something to the effect of "now for our full adventure" or whatever.

#42 Posted by Hailinel (25205 posts) -

I started off getting my ass handed to me in a couple of fights before I really got into the groove, but once it clicked, I've really been enjoying it. My party in the demo current has Tiz as a knight, Agnes as a red mage, Ringabel as a valkyrie and Edea as a ninja, and they're tearing the enemies I'm fighting up right now. Definitely going to be playing this demo as much as I can before the game releases.

#43 Posted by Hunter5024 (5981 posts) -

@westernwizard said:

Luckily the full game lets you do internet friends, only the demo limits you to streetpass for that stuff (I agree it sucks, I've left my DS on the last 6 hours to blast out the rock that leads to the weapons and armor upgrades).

Awesome. Those 70 Pokemon friends will actually come in handy then.

#44 Posted by WesternWizard (119 posts) -

Okay I did the trick for a ton of dudes (debating how high to put it but I'm at like 23 now, yes I know only 20 carry over). So much better. Wish I'd known about this sooner :)

#45 Posted by GERALTITUDE (3509 posts) -

Ringabel?

I don't think so.

#46 Posted by Hailinel (25205 posts) -

So about how long has it taken those that have completed all of the quest content in the demo to do so? I'm still gearing up for the rock monster boss in the forest. Actually, at the rate my preparations are going, I might be a little overpowereed for the fight before I face it.

#47 Posted by Zeik (2783 posts) -

I just finished up the last quest. The most time consuming part is building the village, but if you take advantage of the trick to get a bunch of villagers that goes pretty quick. Took me a little over 4 hours to do all the quests, including a little extra grinding. (To be fair, I did restart and sped through the first half of the quests on easy to do the villager trick.)

#48 Posted by Sergio (2262 posts) -

@zeik: I'm catching up on my 8-4 Play podcasts. One of them said they hated the demo because it was terrible but the final game is great. Hopefully that will be my experience.

#49 Posted by TheMathlete (326 posts) -

The demo just seems a little too hard to me. It seems too easy to get wiped and the game doesn't really explain the systems very well. Might give it another try later on.

#50 Edited by BisonHero (7073 posts) -

Hey, so a few questions:

One: once you've used Examine on an enemy to figure out their weakness and HP and so on, is there no where to pull up that information later in the battle? I prefer it when RPGs only make you "scan" an enemy once ever, and then you can just press a button to pull up their info later on. They might as well do that, because if they don't, fuck them, I'll just keep a wiki/FAQ open with all of the weaknesses anyways. I'm certainly not going to waste my time re-Examining enemies whose weaknesses I have since forgotten (granted, a lot of them are obvious).

Two: Seriously, there are some Hermes Sandals in Norende Village that cost like 5000 gold, and all they give you is like 5-10 Agility (which I assume determines turn order), and a single point of evasion (by comparison, the Kunai you can buy give 20 evasion each, and you really should be equipping both of them). I'm not sure I'd bother equipping that item even if it cost 100 gold. Is there something I'm missing?

Three: Man, that automaton is like a zillion times easier than the dragon. OK, my actual question is what would possess the devs to give the demo a fakeout ending that literally boots you back to the title screen, except there is totally one more quest after that? That just seems like a dick move.

Four: So now that I've done everything (I haven't reached max level and max job rank because I'm not a CRAZY PERSON), am I good to delete the demo as long as I don't delete the Streetpass data for Bravely Default? Or do I need to leave the demo on my 3DS until I actually start a file in the full game, at which point it imports whatever item data?

Five: Is there a way to update the player portrait that gets sent to other people through Streetpass? Mine still shows a lvl 1 freelancer Tiz, as do 90% of the people I've Streetpassed. One person I Streetpassed seemed to have been able to change hers (unless she somehow has an early copy of the full version?).

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