Really torn on whether to buy or not.

#1 Posted by Bishop113 (191 posts) -

Let me preface this by saying, I hate most jrpg's. Final Fantasy IV and Pokemon Red are the only JRPG's(if pokemon qualifies) I've really enjoyed!

So Brad spent a lot of time talking this game up and it's made me really curious, I've watched plenty of gameplay and checked out the demo but I'm still not sure if I'll end up beating this or playing 5 hours and then never touching it again. So I have a couple questions I was hoping some of you who have played it a good amount of time could answer.

1. How big of a role do the Pokemon mechanics play in the game, can you capture any type of monster you run into or is it only specific monsters?

2. With these "familiars" do you basically focus on one familiar and the rest are just sort of support? In all the gameplay I've seen it seems like everyone uses the orange dude with the sword and shield, veggy mite?

3. How quickly does the game pick up, if it doesn't hook me fairly quick I probably won't even bother to play it.

I like the Miyazaki films, particularly Princess Mononoke, which I've seen a lot of influence from that in No kuni, but I also wonder how spread out are story beats, cinematics and boss fights? Is it like most JRPG's where you spend a dozen hours just flubbering about finding your way and finally you get to fight a boss and see some story related content or is it tighter than that?

#2 Posted by CrazyBagMan (849 posts) -

1. How big of a role do the Pokemon mechanics play in the game, can you capture any type of monster you run into or is it only specific monsters?

From what I've played so far it seems you can tame any of the monsters you meet in the wild.

2. With these "familiars" do you basically focus on one familiar and the rest are just sort of support? In all the gameplay I've seen it seems like everyone uses the orange dude with the sword and shield, veggy mite?

You can "main" any familiar, I've actually not been using the one you mentioned for the most part. Though something I appreciate is that even if you don't use a familiar, they get exp, so they're useful as long as they've been with you for a little while even if you haven't used them before.

3. How quickly does the game pick up, if it doesn't hook me fairly quick I probably won't even bother to play it.

it takes some time to really get up to speed, but i think it's necessary. I was probably about 6-7 hours in before it all felt pretty much open, but that could vary depending on how thorough you are. From what Brad was saying it took him something near 10 hours to get to the same point.

Hope this helps shed some light :)

#3 Posted by Bell_End (1208 posts) -

the stubbling block is point 3. it takes AGES to get going.

i would just skip it

#4 Posted by videogamesarenotart (121 posts) -

there's a demo for a reason

#5 Posted by project343 (2833 posts) -

@Bishop113 said:

Let me preface this by saying, I hate most jrpg's. Final Fantasy IV and Pokemon Red are the only JRPG's(if pokemon qualifies) I've really enjoyed!

So Brad spent a lot of time talking this game up and it's made me really curious, I've watched plenty of gameplay and checked out the demo but I'm still not sure if I'll end up beating this or playing 5 hours and then never touching it again. So I have a couple questions I was hoping some of you who have played it a good amount of time could answer.

1. How big of a role do the Pokemon mechanics play in the game, can you capture any type of monster you run into or is it only specific monsters?

2. With these "familiars" do you basically focus on one familiar and the rest are just sort of support? In all the gameplay I've seen it seems like everyone uses the orange dude with the sword and shield, veggy mite?

3. How quickly does the game pick up, if it doesn't hook me fairly quick I probably won't even bother to play it.

I like the Miyazaki films, particularly Princess Mononoke, which I've seen a lot of influence from that in No kuni, but I also wonder how spread out are story beats, cinematics and boss fights? Is it like most JRPG's where you spend a dozen hours just flubbering about finding your way and finally you get to fight a boss and see some story related content or is it tighter than that?

  1. It is the central role. The only time you'll play as one of the heroes is when you have a very specific thing to do (cast a specific Oliver spell, capture an enemy, or try to steal loot). All enemies, aside from the big ol' bosses, can be captured.
  2. Mite is the first familiar you get, and he's a really solid one. That said, giving Oliver a good caster type and a good defensive type is really worthwhile. The game promotes switching between them all the time--something that you'll generally need to do for tougher fights.
  3. It's a JRPG. It takes a while. The main mechanics are dulled out over the first 5 hours, and you end up with all the core stuff by the 10 hour mark.
#6 Posted by Demoskinos (15017 posts) -

I would say it isn't for you. I would highly recommend the game but if grinding and dealing with JRPG system tropes aren't your thing you might want to steer away.

#7 Posted by MegaMagick (40 posts) -

Ni No Kuni is a beautiful game that just oozes charm, i think it would be impossible to walk around Motorville or Ding Dong Dell and NOT be hooked or want to explore. I haven't dug TOO deeply into the game yet but the battle system is great and i love feeding and improving my familiars.

I wouldn't say the game starts off slow, but it holds your hand a little bit for the first 2-3 hours or so then lets you do your thing, which is pretty normal/typical for most JRPGs.

It's great to see that level 5 can still make great RPGs, after recently playing WKC(which is about a mediocre as you can get) i thought they were done.

#8 Posted by Marcsman (3235 posts) -

So far it's my GOTY. It's awesome

#9 Posted by Bishop113 (191 posts) -

Thanks for the replies, one thing I meant to ask, Brad was mentioning that you evolve the familiars as well, is this basically just levels and abilities or do they actually turn into something different like in pokemon?

Also, what's the actual process of capturing the familiars?

#10 Posted by Dourin (233 posts) -

@CrazyBagMan said:

1. How big of a role do the Pokemon mechanics play in the game, can you capture any type of monster you run into or is it only specific monsters?

From what I've played so far it seems you can tame any of the monsters you meet in the wild.

2. With these "familiars" do you basically focus on one familiar and the rest are just sort of support? In all the gameplay I've seen it seems like everyone uses the orange dude with the sword and shield, veggy mite?

You can "main" any familiar, I've actually not been using the one you mentioned for the most part. Though something I appreciate is that even if you don't use a familiar, they get exp, so they're useful as long as they've been with you for a little while even if you haven't used them before.

3. How quickly does the game pick up, if it doesn't hook me fairly quick I probably won't even bother to play it.

it takes some time to really get up to speed, but i think it's necessary. I was probably about 6-7 hours in before it all felt pretty much open, but that could vary depending on how thorough you are. From what Brad was saying it took him something near 10 hours to get to the same point.

Hope this helps shed some light :)

At least in the first 4-5 hours, your first point is not true. Maybe that happens later in the game, but in the beginning hours, at least your first 3 familiars are hand fed to you. Also, looking at the familiar list in the Wizard's Companion, for the sake of enemy variety, I hope those are not all the enemies you run into throughout the entire game. Perhaps what you meant to say is you can tame any familiar you meet in the wild?

For OP's sake, to the second question, the biggest reason you're probably seeing everyone using Mitey is because he's the first one you get. GIven that this is the first week of release, a lot of the videos being released are likely those of early playthroughs. Also, as someone else pointed out, the game actively encourages you to swap out familiars, going so far as to penalize you via a lockout timer if you don't swap a familiar out before their countdown clock reaches zero. That sounds like a complaint, but believe me it's absolutely one of the best mechanics of the combat. It forces fun, frantic RPG combat, especially in boss fights.

To the third question, yeah, it's a JRPG. It takes a while to pick up. That said, if you enjoy Studio Ghibli's work, you really won't mind the slower pace in the beginning as it sets up the story and basic mechanics.

All that said, I'd definitely recommend checking out the demo if you can. If you were a fan of JRPG's, I'd say this is an easy buy, but given your extremely limited interest in the genre, I'd recommend playing it safe with the demo.

#11 Posted by Yodasdarkside (281 posts) -

Here's my take. I was an ardent fan of the JRPG, in the golden era of the PS2, and I shouldn't forget the PSP, which was home to some really good JRPGs as well. However, in this generation, the genre has stagnated beyond belief, to the point where I lost interest in it altogether, zero interest in playing them any more. This forced me to gravitate to other genres, which ultimately I feel was beneficial, because I've played some awesome games over the past few years that I might normally have steered clear of.

I decided to take a risk on this one because it looked great on the Quick Look - and in playing it, it has such heart, such character that my faith has been restored. I fully expect this to be my GOTY, I can't see anything that would beat it, and I'm only 5 hours in, and completely reliving those days of PS2 goodness. I might never buy another FF game again - this one has opened my eyes to how lazy Square-Enix have gotten with that franchise.

#12 Edited by Sanity (1939 posts) -

Im only a few hours in but the game just oozes charm, i gotta say its made me want to see more JRPGS released. Nothing quite like them when there done well.

#13 Posted by isomeri (1317 posts) -

It seems like a fantastic game, but I just simply do not have the time right now. Maby I'll buy it in the summer.

Online
#14 Posted by Rafaelfc (1382 posts) -

I decided to take the 22 GB hit and bought it... problem is, I started a persona 3 save in the meantime, and will probably focus on that before starting ni no kuni... oh crap

#15 Posted by Zeik (2538 posts) -

@Bishop113 said:

Thanks for the replies, one thing I meant to ask, Brad was mentioning that you evolve the familiars as well, is this basically just levels and abilities or do they actually turn into something different like in pokemon?

Also, what's the actual process of capturing the familiars?

They change, but it's not as drastic as Pokemon. The demo will actually show you what I mean. You have your first familiar "Mite" in the first part of the demo and in the second part you have his second form which basically just wears different armor.

#16 Posted by Bishop113 (191 posts) -

Thanks Zeik, I hadn't noticed the change in the demo, I played the second "story" first and then the first hehe. Eh it sounds like I might enjoy it well enough for a purchase so I'll give it a shot

#17 Edited by project343 (2833 posts) -

@Dourin said:

At least in the first 4-5 hours, your first point is not true. Maybe that happens later in the game, but in the beginning hours, at least your first 3 familiars are hand fed to you. Also, looking at the familiar list in the Wizard's Companion, for the sake of enemy variety, I hope those are not all the enemies you run into throughout the entire game. Perhaps what you meant to say is you can tame any familiar you meet in the wild?

I mean, I'm 20 hours in, so there's that caveat. That said, the only enemies I've fought thus far have been familiars and bosses. But I wouldn't hold that against them as a lack of variety. There are over 300 familiars in the game. That's like arguing that there are only 151 Pokemon in Red/Blue.

Also: maaan do some of them look amazing. Just evolved my Bone Ranger into a Bone Brigadier... SO BADASS.

*Edit: for reference.

#18 Posted by Dourin (233 posts) -

Over 300? Man...it really didn't look like that in the Wizard's Companion. Also, that evolution looks siiiick! Man, I need to get back into this thing, ASAP!

#19 Posted by SuperJoe (887 posts) -

@project343 said:

Just evolved my Bone Ranger

OK I'm buying this game.

#20 Posted by Chontamenti (153 posts) -

@project343 said:

Just evolved my Bone Ranger into a Bone Brigadier... SO BADASS.

*Edit: for reference.

OMG what are you doing? Now I need a PS3, AGAIN! ..and the Game, obviously.

#21 Edited by project343 (2833 posts) -

@Dourin: @SuperJoe: @Chontamenti: Protip: get the skeleton in the desert. Physical resistance is completely OP, and he has some really nice stats. Bone Brigadier has physical resistance and no weaknesses. (Also, aesthetically, I think the whole line of them look fantastic). Makes for a perfect familiar for Swaine.

Also. There's a familiar called Girlfiend. Who evolves into Ex-Girlfiend.

#22 Posted by Chontamenti (153 posts) -

@project343 said:

@Dourin: @SuperJoe: @Chontamenti: Protip: get the skeleton in the desert. Physical resistance is completely OP, and he has some really nice stats. Bone Brigadier has physical resistance and no weaknesses. (Also, aesthetically, I think the whole line of them look fantastic). Makes for a perfect familiar for Swaine.

Also. There's a familiar called Girlfiend. Who evolves into Ex-Girlfiend.

Thanks ;)

....Girlfriend: So true! :D

#23 Posted by feetoffthesky (37 posts) -

The incredible depth, stylization and story to this game make me urge you to pick this game up. Sure, some of the JRPG tropes may make it slightly less accessible to new comers of the genre but this game is truly a return to form. I find it strange that anyone entrenched in gaming and it's culture would ever find faults in the tropes that JRPG's present when they are done to the best of the industries ability. Maybe that was just the generation I grew up though, after all, the best games that were around when I was growing up tended to be RPGs. This game is gets everything right while adding things flavor that you did not even know you wanted shoved in there until you dive into it's world. I would recommend this game to anyone, not just fans of the genre, which I have not been able to say of an RPG of any kind in a very long time.

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