Final Fantsty XIII might finally be opening up + Yakuza 3 ?

Posted by Jimbo_N (1197 posts) -

Alright. I've been seeeriously slacking with my blog for a while now so I felt I needed to just write what's on my mind and try to get the writing flow going again. 
 
 
So I think I'm finally getting somewhere in FF13. I've been pretty cold on the game so far and the feeling of "pushing up on the stick, mash A and watch a cutscene with horribly stereotypical characters" is finally letting go of me a bit. I am a huge western RPG fan and coming pretty fresh off  Mass Effect 2 it's very hard to go back these types of characters that Japenese developers decide to hold on to. These archetypes that feel so flat and that always have to make their emotions so incredibly obvious. 
Closing in on the 15 hour mark I think I'm finally starting to see depth in the characters (yes, even Snow). I think they're finally starting to show some sides of themselves that proves a depth I feared was nowhere to be found in this game. 
The combat system is also starting to open up alot wich makes the narrow corridor running between combat feel more forgivable. I find myself reeaaally starting to use paradigm shifts in combat alot more to survive battles and it's starting to get suprisingly addictive and rewarding to go from tanking and buffing up to dealing some burst damage to dealing damage while healing to buffing up some more again. Changing tactics on the fly in combat like this is making more and more sense the longer I play. I also know I'm approaching the chapter where I finally get to roam around a bit.  
It's still very easy for my brain to fall into grindmode and get bored but I think I'm warming up to the game a bit and I know a FF game is something you have to put serious time into so that's what I decided to do. 
Its very easy to write this game off at the point where you feel you could have completed a whole other game in the same time. But realizing that is not fair way to think is pretty key for enjoyment here. So I'll continue to grind through this for some more hours and I'm hoping character portraits aswell as gameplay will continue to dive deeper. 
Also, I haven't checked but is that Claudia Black doing the voice of Fang? I get a pretty distinct Chloe Frazer vibe from her. 
 
 
In other news I was pretty upset the other day when I realized that the store I preordered Yakuza 3 from had run out of copies so I missed out on my day 1 disc of the game. Getting out of bed today and checking my e-mail finally revealed the mail I've been waiting for. They finally sent me my electronical bill for the game wich should mean I should have a copy of Yakuza 3 arriving in the mail at least before the week is over. I was really bummed out by the news that the hostess bar is removed tho.  
Removing really japanese quiz stuff kinda makes sense but come on Sega, removing the Hostess bar because the west would'nt understand it? ugh... I'd say its a pretty key part for the underground Tokyo Yakuza feeling the game is going for here. 
Anyways, stoked that there's finally an update on my Yakuza 3 situation. Of course, realizing I won't be done with FF13 for a WHILE and that God of War 3 is just around the corner makes me realize that I am in no real hurry to get my hands on Yakuza. But I still am! Want to play naow!
#1 Posted by Jimbo_N (1197 posts) -

Alright. I've been seeeriously slacking with my blog for a while now so I felt I needed to just write what's on my mind and try to get the writing flow going again. 
 
 
So I think I'm finally getting somewhere in FF13. I've been pretty cold on the game so far and the feeling of "pushing up on the stick, mash A and watch a cutscene with horribly stereotypical characters" is finally letting go of me a bit. I am a huge western RPG fan and coming pretty fresh off  Mass Effect 2 it's very hard to go back these types of characters that Japenese developers decide to hold on to. These archetypes that feel so flat and that always have to make their emotions so incredibly obvious. 
Closing in on the 15 hour mark I think I'm finally starting to see depth in the characters (yes, even Snow). I think they're finally starting to show some sides of themselves that proves a depth I feared was nowhere to be found in this game. 
The combat system is also starting to open up alot wich makes the narrow corridor running between combat feel more forgivable. I find myself reeaaally starting to use paradigm shifts in combat alot more to survive battles and it's starting to get suprisingly addictive and rewarding to go from tanking and buffing up to dealing some burst damage to dealing damage while healing to buffing up some more again. Changing tactics on the fly in combat like this is making more and more sense the longer I play. I also know I'm approaching the chapter where I finally get to roam around a bit.  
It's still very easy for my brain to fall into grindmode and get bored but I think I'm warming up to the game a bit and I know a FF game is something you have to put serious time into so that's what I decided to do. 
Its very easy to write this game off at the point where you feel you could have completed a whole other game in the same time. But realizing that is not fair way to think is pretty key for enjoyment here. So I'll continue to grind through this for some more hours and I'm hoping character portraits aswell as gameplay will continue to dive deeper. 
Also, I haven't checked but is that Claudia Black doing the voice of Fang? I get a pretty distinct Chloe Frazer vibe from her. 
 
 
In other news I was pretty upset the other day when I realized that the store I preordered Yakuza 3 from had run out of copies so I missed out on my day 1 disc of the game. Getting out of bed today and checking my e-mail finally revealed the mail I've been waiting for. They finally sent me my electronical bill for the game wich should mean I should have a copy of Yakuza 3 arriving in the mail at least before the week is over. I was really bummed out by the news that the hostess bar is removed tho.  
Removing really japanese quiz stuff kinda makes sense but come on Sega, removing the Hostess bar because the west would'nt understand it? ugh... I'd say its a pretty key part for the underground Tokyo Yakuza feeling the game is going for here. 
Anyways, stoked that there's finally an update on my Yakuza 3 situation. Of course, realizing I won't be done with FF13 for a WHILE and that God of War 3 is just around the corner makes me realize that I am in no real hurry to get my hands on Yakuza. But I still am! Want to play naow!
#2 Posted by ZenaxPure (2569 posts) -

Fun fact since you mentioned FF13 and ME2, Lightning and Liara share the same voice actress. I still can't believe it but I assume imdb and wikipedia isn't lying to me. Also no Claudia Black does not do the voice of Fang, some lady named Rachel Robinson does her voice.

#3 Edited by Ham08 (202 posts) -

Wait till you get to Gran Pulse in chapter 11 (20 plus hours).  That's when everything opens up, including picking your own party members and leader, leveling them up in any discipline with many new and more powerful versions of skills, Huge non-linear zones, and the challenge of battles increases exponentially.  You absolutely have to use tactics and switch paradigms during battle or you will fail even on normal encounters.  Plus, by that time the characters have had their motivations and back stories fleshed out a bit more and they have started coming together as a team with a common goal in mind.  This game really is pretty awesome when you get past the first 20 hours which is a shame that it takes so long to get good, but oh baby is it really good.


P.S. I thought that the same girl that voice acted Naoto in Persona 4 played Lightening.  Just checked. I was wrong and Zenaxzd is right.  Sounds like her though. Anyway, It was Ali Hillis and she does an amazing job as Lightening.  Perfect voice for the character if you ask me.

#4 Posted by m1k3 (1325 posts) -

funny thing, while i do love FFXIII, i spent more time playing Yakuza 3 last week and i got it 2 days after FFXIII.

#5 Posted by Addfwyn (1917 posts) -

I found FF13 to have some of the most compelling RPG characters I've seen in ages, surprised to see so many people mention this when I find they are incredibly diverse and my biggest complaint was that they didn't fit in any clear archetype really.  Vanille has a lot more going on than 'cute japanese girl' and even the Shinji-esque Hope has some real development. 
 
But glad everything else seems to be working out for you, and hope you enjoy it.  You're probably near chapter 9/10 which is when it starts to get a bit more diverse in options.  Chapter 7 and 8 are my personal favourites though.

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