My Nier 15 hour experience...

Posted by Jeust (10680 posts) -

(Sorry for the pun ^^" )
 
I've played the game a fair bit, and getting at mid point, so i have a clearer view about the game. I'll probably end it up at 40 hour+ since, i'm doing a lot of exploring and side-questing, and a bit of grinding. 
 
There was a bit of discussion about what the best main character - Gestalt (older and scruffier) or Replicant (younger more stylized) - and coming from the experience of playing the game, the game justifies very well the motivation of a desperate parent, more so than it could based on a sibling relationship.   

Now the game itself...  
 
Booting up the game presents you with a introduction to the fighting mechanics with a tender story, that is a good taste of what is to come: a sad story with a lot of over the top fighting.  
 
The game after the brief 10 minutes insanity slows down a lot and introduces you to your surroundings, with some fetch quests, and accelerates with your first story quest, which plays with your emotions too, especially as a parent.  This kind of mixed rhythm (main and side questing) continues till half of the game, with the game giving you the decision of what to do and when, although in one or another spot after some main event you are obliged to reach the end of the given task. 
 
This kind of pacing can get a bit tedious, and the comparisons with the mmorpgs are not overboard, though unlike mmos, the gains in delving in the side-quests are in the majority of them just monetary, that you can spend to perk up your main character, but often the actual perking will depend on a quest item, so it's more of a option than a necessity. You can only gain XP by fighting.
 
 There are also no armours or clothes except for the main attire of the main character (overlooking the DLC that brings new skins), and you can only change the weapon he uses, with a variety of swords (light and heavy) and lances. There is also a crafting system for the weapons, where with some materials you can make it more effective, and enchantment system to give the weapon additional bonuses. Also it is in place a simple magic system, where you can have two magic spells in place when engaging in a fight, but you can change them pausing it, and navigating the menus.   
 
The game has a very intuitive menu transversing and general gameplay, that can be considered a bit generic, but it works perfectly fine. One thing of notice is that you have an defence stance as also a dodge move.  The style of gameplay also changes quite often, ranging from hack and slash, shmup, plataformer, top down fighter, while in a brusk way, with ease on the players skills, and without frustration. Sometimes it can be surprising, but it never takes much to adapt to it.  It's experimental.
  
The story is has some common places, like an apocalyptical tale and the eternal fight of good against evil, but it has enough fresh and insane elements, to make it even the most absurd thing natural. An example of this is a disease that consists of tatoos progressively covering up the body of a person, which is insane! 
     
In Final Fantasy you have Chocobos, here you ride a wild hog. It's a nice and quirky addition. 
 
The main characters are well developed and interesting, although some interactions between them can seem a little strange, like the fact that they generally walk slower than you, and when they are too far behind they teleport to a near position, and they can't ride the wild pig with you. Probably rough edges from a small budget, still it doesn't break the magic, as the world you are immersed is so strange that, if you saw flying sheep you would probably not going to find all that strange.  
 
The fishing mini-game, while it doesn't shine as wondrous, it isn't bad, it's actually better than the Lost Odyssey's music box game. The initial instructions to fishing are a bit sketchy, and will make any who try scratch your head, just as with any other in-game tutorial system, but in a few minutes it becomes clear how it works. One thing that the game doesn't explain is that the difficulty in fishing varies from spot to spot, and can lead people to insanity, as it happened to a infamous game reviewer. 
  
The graphics aren't at the level of FFXIII or Resonance of Fate, still they do their job well and are encompassed with some awesome moments and effects. Things like the brighter than normal light of the day as you arise from a cave, or the bobble ammo from the bosses that resembles the ones from shmups.  Worth noticing also is the fact that there are no frame rate drops or screen tearing.  

The music department is awesome and memorable, with awesome voice works, simply brilliant at spots. The performances given by each voice actor is also very good, in contrast to most roleplaying games from Japan. 
  
Now is it worth 60-70$?  
 
Personally i bought it because i was in a rut moment, needed something to unwind, and had the cash, but it can be considering the type of player you are. The game is very interesting and moving, in the same style as Lost Odyssey (without as much text and tears), and it plays well, as long as you don't plan on playing it on one sitting, which would be extremely monotonous. Fetch quests are optional - most people i've seen that finished it only did about 44% of them - and mixed with the story can be a welcome change of pace.

In conclusion it's a great game, not perfect as i've described it, but a memorable experience. Personally i can't wait to play more... 
    
Take care guys  

#1 Edited by Jeust (10680 posts) -

(Sorry for the pun ^^" )
 
I've played the game a fair bit, and getting at mid point, so i have a clearer view about the game. I'll probably end it up at 40 hour+ since, i'm doing a lot of exploring and side-questing, and a bit of grinding. 
 
There was a bit of discussion about what the best main character - Gestalt (older and scruffier) or Replicant (younger more stylized) - and coming from the experience of playing the game, the game justifies very well the motivation of a desperate parent, more so than it could based on a sibling relationship.   

Now the game itself...  
 
Booting up the game presents you with a introduction to the fighting mechanics with a tender story, that is a good taste of what is to come: a sad story with a lot of over the top fighting.  
 
The game after the brief 10 minutes insanity slows down a lot and introduces you to your surroundings, with some fetch quests, and accelerates with your first story quest, which plays with your emotions too, especially as a parent.  This kind of mixed rhythm (main and side questing) continues till half of the game, with the game giving you the decision of what to do and when, although in one or another spot after some main event you are obliged to reach the end of the given task. 
 
This kind of pacing can get a bit tedious, and the comparisons with the mmorpgs are not overboard, though unlike mmos, the gains in delving in the side-quests are in the majority of them just monetary, that you can spend to perk up your main character, but often the actual perking will depend on a quest item, so it's more of a option than a necessity. You can only gain XP by fighting.
 
 There are also no armours or clothes except for the main attire of the main character (overlooking the DLC that brings new skins), and you can only change the weapon he uses, with a variety of swords (light and heavy) and lances. There is also a crafting system for the weapons, where with some materials you can make it more effective, and enchantment system to give the weapon additional bonuses. Also it is in place a simple magic system, where you can have two magic spells in place when engaging in a fight, but you can change them pausing it, and navigating the menus.   
 
The game has a very intuitive menu transversing and general gameplay, that can be considered a bit generic, but it works perfectly fine. One thing of notice is that you have an defence stance as also a dodge move.  The style of gameplay also changes quite often, ranging from hack and slash, shmup, plataformer, top down fighter, while in a brusk way, with ease on the players skills, and without frustration. Sometimes it can be surprising, but it never takes much to adapt to it.  It's experimental.
  
The story is has some common places, like an apocalyptical tale and the eternal fight of good against evil, but it has enough fresh and insane elements, to make it even the most absurd thing natural. An example of this is a disease that consists of tatoos progressively covering up the body of a person, which is insane! 
     
In Final Fantasy you have Chocobos, here you ride a wild hog. It's a nice and quirky addition. 
 
The main characters are well developed and interesting, although some interactions between them can seem a little strange, like the fact that they generally walk slower than you, and when they are too far behind they teleport to a near position, and they can't ride the wild pig with you. Probably rough edges from a small budget, still it doesn't break the magic, as the world you are immersed is so strange that, if you saw flying sheep you would probably not going to find all that strange.  
 
The fishing mini-game, while it doesn't shine as wondrous, it isn't bad, it's actually better than the Lost Odyssey's music box game. The initial instructions to fishing are a bit sketchy, and will make any who try scratch your head, just as with any other in-game tutorial system, but in a few minutes it becomes clear how it works. One thing that the game doesn't explain is that the difficulty in fishing varies from spot to spot, and can lead people to insanity, as it happened to a infamous game reviewer. 
  
The graphics aren't at the level of FFXIII or Resonance of Fate, still they do their job well and are encompassed with some awesome moments and effects. Things like the brighter than normal light of the day as you arise from a cave, or the bobble ammo from the bosses that resembles the ones from shmups.  Worth noticing also is the fact that there are no frame rate drops or screen tearing.  

The music department is awesome and memorable, with awesome voice works, simply brilliant at spots. The performances given by each voice actor is also very good, in contrast to most roleplaying games from Japan. 
  
Now is it worth 60-70$?  
 
Personally i bought it because i was in a rut moment, needed something to unwind, and had the cash, but it can be considering the type of player you are. The game is very interesting and moving, in the same style as Lost Odyssey (without as much text and tears), and it plays well, as long as you don't plan on playing it on one sitting, which would be extremely monotonous. Fetch quests are optional - most people i've seen that finished it only did about 44% of them - and mixed with the story can be a welcome change of pace.

In conclusion it's a great game, not perfect as i've described it, but a memorable experience. Personally i can't wait to play more... 
    
Take care guys  

#2 Posted by fwylo (3556 posts) -

Sounds pretty good from your perspective.  All I've heard about it so far are bad things.  Even though it didn't look all that bad from the quick look. 
 
Not my style of game though so I'll be passing it up for sure.
 
Good to see you're back!

#3 Posted by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@fwylo: Good to be back :) 
 
This is a game that strangely calls to me, by it's quirky characters and style. It isn't the best game, and i can understand why some people might call it bad, but at it is great if you have the right mindset to experience it. :p 
#4 Posted by Catolf (2653 posts) -

I've been debating on getting his game for a while, i don't think I'll be paying 60 bucks but I will be picking it up I think. Thanks for the insight, it's good to hear something positive about the game!

#5 Edited by luce (4045 posts) -

Yo i heard the fishing minigame is ass

#6 Posted by Brendan (7817 posts) -

I played it at a friends house for most of the day (7 hours or so) and it felt to me like all of it's seperate mechanics have been done better in other games.  If you are constantly on the hunt for jrpg's then I would say this game is passable, but other then that I wouldn't recommend it as a stellar use of $60.  Just my two cents.
#7 Posted by AlwaysAngry (2924 posts) -

Yahtzee said said this game gave him a Nier death experience.

#8 Edited by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@Catolf said:

" I've been debating on getting his game for a while, i don't think I'll be paying 60 bucks but I will be picking it up I think. Thanks for the insight, it's good to hear something positive about the game! "

You're welcome, and you do well waiting for the price to drop, as it won't take much time as the game won't sell much. 
 

@luce

said:

" Yo i heard the fishing minigame is ass "


It isn't, just like other mini-games in other videogames. Needs a bit of experience playing it. The in-game tutorial about the game is a bit sketchy, but that happens in all games.   
 

@Brendan

said:

" I played it at a friends house for most of the day (7 hours or so) and it felt to me like all of it's seperate mechanics have been done better in other games.  If you are constantly on the hunt for jrpg's then I would say this game is passable, but other then that I wouldn't recommend it as a stellar use of $60.  Just my two cents. "


I understand where you come from, though i might disagree for a bit. True that the game blends various mechanics (gameplays) that have been done better in separate games, though this isn't a normal jrpg, as it doesn't focus on roleplaying elements. The game mixes various styles, and has a long longevity, even as you have to play it multiple times, three or so, to understand the whole story.  It can be worth 60$, but it depends of what you want to do with it or with the 60$. For me, for example is more worthwhile than FFXIII and many people paid full price for it. 
 

@AlwaysAngry

said:

" Yahtzee said said this game gave him a Nier death experience. "

That's Yatzee. hehehe He wouldn't lose the opportunity to make a pun about the game. But as i said the game can be boring if you decide to do every single quest, and don't blend them with the story, or like a hardcore gamer you decide to finish in one or two sittings. That's maybe on of the problem with the reviewers, as they are hard pressed into playing each game for longer periods and finishing it quickly, for which this game would bore me out of my skull. But in short periods it is a great game that will keep me entertained a long time.  
#9 Posted by fini_fly (767 posts) -
@AlwaysAngry said:
" Yahtzee said said this game gave him a Nier death experience. "
His was a good review.
#10 Posted by Catolf (2653 posts) -
@fini_fly said:
" @AlwaysAngry said:
" Yahtzee said said this game gave him a Nier death experience. "
His was a good review. "
It neither completely damned the game or praised it, but it's the most positive we've seen him on an RPG with a big fat J on it.
 
@Jeust said:
You're welcome, and you do well waiting for the price to drop, as it won't take much time as the game won't sell much.
Yeah, I need the cash for a Con i'm going too, and for another bigger tank for my gecko's.
#11 Posted by owl_of_minerva (1455 posts) -

Thanks for the writeup, it's good to hear a different perspective. I have some interest in the game although it's been getting really bad press.

#12 Posted by fini_fly (767 posts) -
@owl_of_minerva said:
" Thanks for the writeup, it's good to hear a different perspective. I have some interest in the game although it's been getting really bad press. "
Yes, thank you, as I also have some interest in this game. I definitely wont pick it up until it drops in price though.
#13 Posted by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@Catolf: Don't worry then... the game won't go anywhere. :p 
 
@owl_of_minerva:  
 
Yeah it's true, but i think that is mostly because it is a game to fend for itself. It doesn't have a big name attached to it, or a big developer, and as such it's flaws are easier to see and criticize. It's a odd game, that can be perceived as good or as bad depending of the person playing it. But definitively not average, as there isn't any game out there as Nier. 
 
@fini_fly:  
 
You're welcome. I don't think it will take long for a drop, even as the gamestore's shelfs are being stuffed with the bigger and better releases. Still in Portugal it takes at least six months for a drop. 
#14 Posted by fini_fly (767 posts) -
@Jeust: Yeah I'm not too worried. I just picked up Fallout 3 off of ebay, got the Humble Bundle and Penumbra series for my computer, so I'll have plenty to keep me busy in the meantime.
#15 Edited by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@fini_fly: Yep. Those games will provide for some solid hours of fun.
#16 Posted by Subject2Change (2966 posts) -

Hmmm when i'm in a rut I go to the bar or see a show...like last night. However after that I felt great as I needed the time to myself and not at home.
 
Nier is something I planned to check out when it had a price drop or an Amazon deal of the day. Got way too much to play now, so maybe will wait even longer.

#17 Edited by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@Subject2Change said:

" Hmmm when i'm in a rut I go to the bar or see a show...like last night. However after that I felt great as I needed the time to myself and not at home.  Nier is something I planned to check out when it had a price drop or an Amazon deal of the day. Got way too much to play now, so maybe will wait even longer. "

Different people. :p When i'm in a rut, i need time for myself and tend to ease the pain with a distraction, while still subconsciously debating the reasons that lead me there.    
 
Hum hum me too, i have too much to play and so little time. 
#18 Posted by SwobyJ (2 posts) -

Yeah, I really don't care about the blind bashing. I'm LOVING this game, despite its faults. 

#19 Posted by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@SwobyJ:  Me too! It's a great game on it's own right. 
#20 Posted by mpgeist (612 posts) -

Are you still enjoying this game?  I'm really on the fence with it.  I enjoy a quirky title every once in a while (Bulletwitch), it's just hard to tell sometimes.

#21 Edited by Jeust (10680 posts) -
@mpgeist: Yes, a lot. The game is good, but it depends greatly on what you're asking of him. 
 
It doesn't have a deep combat, more of a relatively shallow combat system that relies on strategy than in a rushed approach when facing strong opponents, still it's a fun and simple system. Many of the side-quests are generic, still there are interesting and surprising ones. What really shines is the story, which is good and fresh, and the soundtrack, which is awesome. I also liked the graphic style. 
 
Some of the songs in youtube... 
 
   
   
   
   
 
What does it sound to you? 
#22 Posted by Pookmunki (3 posts) -

I'm early into my first playthrough. But the style, music and 'desperate father' theme are keeping me hooked, look forward to more

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