Anatomy of an Epilogue: The Answer

I want to begin by saying thanks to all the people who've continued to read my blog. It's really nice to know I have an audience for this and I'm not just doing this for my own sake. Thanks so much everyone! Observant people may have already caught a glimpse of the next game I've set my sights on, Assassin's Creed II. I should receive my copy from GameFly tomorrow and I hope to have my review of the game up fairly soon, so look for that. Now, onto the bulk of what I'm here to write about.   
 
My recent completion of Persona 3 FES' The Answer has made me think about video game epilogues. The epilogue seems to be something more and more games are adopting, and I'm not sure I'm comfortable that. With the advent of paid DLC, it's easy for game companies to add content to the single player adventure. It's a great way to expand on the story, add some cool side mission, or maybe clear up some confusion with the story. It can also be used to 'expand' on the conclusion of the game. Two recent examples I can think of are Fallout 3 and the most recent Prince of Persia game.  
    
I want my games to be complete right out of the box. I don't want to have to purchase some extra content to understand the end of the game. DLC seems to be one way developers are trying to combat the rampant trading-in of games. Fallout 3's ending was an example of how not to end an open world game, yet I don't think how they 'fixed' it worked any better. In fact, I think they made the ending worse. The content was good at least and, in that case, that's what mattered. What scares me, though, is the idea that a developer may leave a game without an ending on purpose in the future, just so they can sell you DLC. I really hope this never happens, but I wouldn't put it passed a company like Activision. Game publishers seem to be getting more and more greedy, and I'm not sure where this is going to end. I'm tired of being nickel and dimed with my games. I guess I'm part of the problem, because I have a GameFly account, but that's better than trading in my games to GameStop each time, right? It's the only way I can actually afford to play all the games that come up. Games are just too expensive. I love concise games, but I can't justify paying $60 for something that might end up being a 4-6 hour experience. I do still buy games, though. If I love a franchise or developer, or if it's a game I know I'll spend 20+ hours on, I'll pick it up. 
        
I suppose I should talk about what brought this post on, Persona 3:The Answer. I went into The Answer with great trepidation. I was afraid that all the emotional impact of the original ending would be ruined. A lot of what made Persona 3 in amazing in the first place is missing in this installment. Their are no daily events and no social links. It's a much more straightforward experience. You have a lengthy intro and you proceed to grind and fight until you reach the next cutscene. Repeat until the end. The strength of the characters did carry me through the grind-filled 25 hours. Aigis' sister, Metis, is the only new addition to the cast. Though she starts annoying, I found her to be an amazing addition to the cast, both in battle and part of the story. She's as well thought out as all the other characters and, honestly, may be my favorite part of The Answer. 
 
  Was the epilogue really necessary? No, but it does a lot to help expand on the ending of the game. Persona 3's ending was very abstract, and I can see people having problems with that. Even for those that fully understood what happened, The Answer does really add a lot. it gives closure to all the other characters in the story that didn't really get it in Persona 3. The story does an amazing job of showing all the characters going through the grieving process in their own way. It's really a tale that could only be told as an epilogue. I really respect the job the writers did with the story. They did a great job making sure the people that remained were given a happy ending, without ruining the emotional impact of the main character's story. They didn't take the easy way out and try to reverse the slightly unpopular ending they had with Persona 3, and I respect them for that.

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Posted by yami4ct

I want to begin by saying thanks to all the people who've continued to read my blog. It's really nice to know I have an audience for this and I'm not just doing this for my own sake. Thanks so much everyone! Observant people may have already caught a glimpse of the next game I've set my sights on, Assassin's Creed II. I should receive my copy from GameFly tomorrow and I hope to have my review of the game up fairly soon, so look for that. Now, onto the bulk of what I'm here to write about.   
 
My recent completion of Persona 3 FES' The Answer has made me think about video game epilogues. The epilogue seems to be something more and more games are adopting, and I'm not sure I'm comfortable that. With the advent of paid DLC, it's easy for game companies to add content to the single player adventure. It's a great way to expand on the story, add some cool side mission, or maybe clear up some confusion with the story. It can also be used to 'expand' on the conclusion of the game. Two recent examples I can think of are Fallout 3 and the most recent Prince of Persia game.  
    
I want my games to be complete right out of the box. I don't want to have to purchase some extra content to understand the end of the game. DLC seems to be one way developers are trying to combat the rampant trading-in of games. Fallout 3's ending was an example of how not to end an open world game, yet I don't think how they 'fixed' it worked any better. In fact, I think they made the ending worse. The content was good at least and, in that case, that's what mattered. What scares me, though, is the idea that a developer may leave a game without an ending on purpose in the future, just so they can sell you DLC. I really hope this never happens, but I wouldn't put it passed a company like Activision. Game publishers seem to be getting more and more greedy, and I'm not sure where this is going to end. I'm tired of being nickel and dimed with my games. I guess I'm part of the problem, because I have a GameFly account, but that's better than trading in my games to GameStop each time, right? It's the only way I can actually afford to play all the games that come up. Games are just too expensive. I love concise games, but I can't justify paying $60 for something that might end up being a 4-6 hour experience. I do still buy games, though. If I love a franchise or developer, or if it's a game I know I'll spend 20+ hours on, I'll pick it up. 
        
I suppose I should talk about what brought this post on, Persona 3:The Answer. I went into The Answer with great trepidation. I was afraid that all the emotional impact of the original ending would be ruined. A lot of what made Persona 3 in amazing in the first place is missing in this installment. Their are no daily events and no social links. It's a much more straightforward experience. You have a lengthy intro and you proceed to grind and fight until you reach the next cutscene. Repeat until the end. The strength of the characters did carry me through the grind-filled 25 hours. Aigis' sister, Metis, is the only new addition to the cast. Though she starts annoying, I found her to be an amazing addition to the cast, both in battle and part of the story. She's as well thought out as all the other characters and, honestly, may be my favorite part of The Answer. 
 
  Was the epilogue really necessary? No, but it does a lot to help expand on the ending of the game. Persona 3's ending was very abstract, and I can see people having problems with that. Even for those that fully understood what happened, The Answer does really add a lot. it gives closure to all the other characters in the story that didn't really get it in Persona 3. The story does an amazing job of showing all the characters going through the grieving process in their own way. It's really a tale that could only be told as an epilogue. I really respect the job the writers did with the story. They did a great job making sure the people that remained were given a happy ending, without ruining the emotional impact of the main character's story. They didn't take the easy way out and try to reverse the slightly unpopular ending they had with Persona 3, and I respect them for that.