Xeno Topic Chronicles XIV: Man whut a buncha postas!!

#71DavzzPosted 4/14/2012 7:40:00 PM
Are people still trying to convince SC on things? He's like the crazy old man in the park shouting about how the Earth is flat and the government is stealing our precious body essence fluids.

Just have a good laugh whenever he says something outlandish like "Tolstoy is a pretentious hack"
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#72Skyway_CorsairPosted 4/14/2012 7:59:19 PM
That's just not true.
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#73Darkstalker_CvSPosted 4/14/2012 8:23:54 PM
Hey man, I just wanted to poke fun at his definition of a definition.

Just downloaded Skullgirls. Will give it a spin soon
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#74SuborbionPosted 4/14/2012 8:57:35 PM
I was about to ask who the spoiler character was then I remembered :P best area in the game iyo? You did look for secret areas right? Because that's an extremely satisfying part of the game, I didn't bother that much with side quests myself but it still took me 80 hours and over 2 weeks.
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#75Cloudslash(Topic Creator)Posted 4/14/2012 10:05:43 PM
I had exactly 70:01 clocked on my "game cleared" file, and as I said, that was with me trying to bum rush the main game as fast as possible (and you can probably add 2 - 3 hours to that where I stubbornly kept trying to beat the final battle while underleveled and unprepared). Xenoblade is LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG.

And favorite area? Hmm... Colony 9 was a breathtaking introduction to the game's world, and I also really liked that Marsh/Swamp area. Kinda ironic that a friggin' swamp was one of the prettiest areas I've ever seen in a video game XD I HATED Mechonis though, every last inch of it.

I do want to say that the story turned out to be surprisingly good, and that's to be expected considering the game's director. It just took FOREVER to really get to that point. The first 10 hours do a good job of introducing the world and main characters (not to mention just the idea of the Monado in general), and the last 15 hours or so come very close to approaching the sort of mind blowing stuff that happened in gears and saga, but the middle was a bit dull by comparison.

I also got the feeling Takahashi was, for the first time, intentionally trying to... how should I put this... scale down his writing just a bit? For example, there's a few characters like Melia, Egil, Alvis, and the spoiler party member who actually seemed to have interesting backstories and decently complicated motivations, but for the most part, the cast, while technically well written and characterized, wasn't that deep or anything. It was a lot more black and white than I expected, and the way the game actually makes a point of stating how basic some of their motivations are (to avoid spoilers: one villain is a generic scumbag, another simply loves his job, and yet another was brainwashed, and that's really all there ever is to them), I almost get the impression that the author was handwaving how simple these explanations were compared to the vastly more complex villains in gears and saga like Krelian and Albedo. Like "I wanted to do more, but I just couldn't here for many reasons."

And the same goes for the good guys too. Shulk starts out interesting, but gets derailed about 3/5 of the way through the game. Reyn's mostly just looking out for him and trying to nail Sharla, who's just there to find her missing husband. And Dunban and Riki are pretty much copies of Jin Uzuki and Chu-Chu respectively who never get significant development (well to be fair, Dunban gets a decent bit BEFORE he joins the party, but once he officially joins he's pretty much just a mentor to the rest of the group). Melia and the spoiler character are the only ones I can't just sum up in a single sentence.

GAH, to be continued, character limit.
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"Might go somewhere sunny. Sit on beach, look at ocean, collect seashells. ...Might run tests on seashells." Mordin Solus
#76Cloudslash(Topic Creator)Posted 4/14/2012 10:05:46 PM
Anyhow, my last post may sound very harsh... but in spite of the mostly not terribly deep characters, piddling pace of the middle of the game, and the apparent scale-down of the overall story scope, Takahashi and Monolith Soft still managed make it work. They still put a heck of a story in there, especially if you can make it to the end. The characters are still well crafted for what they are. The plot itself is a mostly solid tale and has no major holes or glaring issues that I can think of (and only one lingering thread that I'll address in a sec). The script is well written aside from one or two characters. The cutscene direction is fantastic (and some of them are VERY long, don't let the Xenosaga haters fool you here; I clocked at least one that lasted over an hour). The setting is obviously very unique. And I love a lot of the ideas the plot uses (let's just say the Monado is only the tip of the iceburg here). If not for some mild-to-moderate pacing issues, Takahashi's reuse of a few tropes and cliches from his previous games (some done well here, some not), and the fact that a lot of plot-critical info is saved for the last 1/5 or so of the game (a lot of which could've been gradually revealed for better effect and little-to-no overall quality loss), it would've been a near masterpiece. As it is though, it was still a surprisingly good story, and it's actually making me wanna replay and see what I think of it now that I know what's what. That and this time I wanna listen to the Japanese track.

Side question: About that lingering thread... did the game ever explain who or what Xord was? Was he just an annoying boss with no backstory, or did I forget/miss the part where they explained him? That's the only lingering question I still have about the plot (which I hope gives an idea of how incredibly tight the overall narrative is considering the size and scope of it).

So yeah. I may not love the actual gameplay, but it's not quite awful for all my complaining about it, and as you can see, there's still plenty of other aspects to like about Xenoblade.

I'd probably give the game an 8/10. My more subjective experience was closer to a 7/10, but the game does have a lot of positive aspects that I haven't even touched on (mostly tons and tons of small stuff that adds up nicely like save anywhere, tons of options in the, uh, options menu, you can pause and skip cutscenes, use fast travel, game over doesn't send you to the title screen, etc.), and the story genuinely surprised me by the time I finished it. I just can't quite jump on the "best game/RPG/Wii game/etc. ever" bandwagon due to my qualms with the battle system, forced grinding, and occasional uneven pacing of the game.
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"Might go somewhere sunny. Sit on beach, look at ocean, collect seashells. ...Might run tests on seashells." Mordin Solus
#77bodrockPosted 4/14/2012 10:57:33 PM(edited)
JunpeiIori posted...
Go see Cabin in the Woods.

Seriously.

It's absolutely one of the best horror films in a LONG time. Not only that, but it is definitely the best film I've seen this year. Oh, and it was written by Joss Whedon. Don't let the ads fool you, it is more than a generic horror film. It really is something special.


I wanna see this so bad!! Hopefully sometime before the DVD hits, but no promises...

I'll definitely be adding you, Junpei. But I'll probably suck, so hope you can get some fun outta beatin me silly. I find myself enjoying Cerebella, Valentine and Peacock.

And lastly, it sounds like a lot of us are enjoying Xenoblade! I'm definitely looking forward to playing it....

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#78Darkstalker_CvSPosted 4/15/2012 12:44:02 AM
Peacock x Parasoul, baby. Keepaway all day every day
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#79Dr JackalPosted 4/15/2012 3:00:18 AM
I was watching some David Blaine special yesterday and it really is amazing what the guy does. Even though you know there is always a method to the madness, he is extremely smart for coming up with the tricks.

The guy is really a pioneer and pretty much single-handedly resurrected the interest in magic in this country.

I really admire the guy in general.
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#80JunpeiIoriPosted 4/15/2012 4:35:30 AM
I haven't actually played any of Skullgirls as a team. I'm going through story mode with every character to get a feel for each one before I decide what I want to do.

At the moment, I like Filia, Ms. Fortune, and Cerebella. I just really wish there were more than 8 friggin' characters in this game. Though, if that were the case, we wouldn't have seen it for another 2 years.
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Some say, he only knows two facts about ducks...and both of them are wrong.