Just picked it up (I know, I’m behind the loop) and am about half an hour into it. My first impression is extremely positive. The story’s already moving at a brisk pace, but you’re thrust right into exploration/random battles, so no hours of exposition. There are a lot of things done right - mini-maps, teleporters, big icons indicating “EXIT HERE”, options for changing camera orientation, pausable and skippable scenes, the ability to change your main character, and even relatively low loading times. The graphics are simple but detailed, and do things with cel shading that makes Kingdom Hearts really jealous. Music so far has been pretty strong. The menu system is a bit cumbersome but not too bad. Voices have been spot-on.
The battle system is reminiscent of Star Ocean 3, but with MUCH tighter controls. I didn’t realize how stilted SO3 was until I started fighting people in Rogue Galaxy. The best thing about it is that battles happen right there on the field - something I haven’t seen done properly since CT. The experience is so much smoother it’s really astounding more games haven’t tried it. Yes, FF12 had something similar - but with FF12, there was no “battle finished”. Any time you enter a dungeon you’re in battle, and that really grated on me at times. This system, though, I like a lot. The battles themselves are already challenging (or perhaps it’s the learning curve) but not frustrating (yet).
I know too many games that have put most of their great stuff in the first five hours or so (almost all of them, in fact) so I won’t say I really think Rogue Galaxy will be unbelievable, but so far it seems quite solid.
I was wondering when you’d get this game and post a review… I’ve been curious about Rogue Galaxy for a while, so keep me posted with your impressions.
Heh… I think this is the very first PS2 game I’ve ever gotten that wasn’t an established name or sequel. I don’t play anywhere near as much as I used to (Sunday’s basically my only real time off, and often I’ll have to spend it catching up with the rest of my life) but I’ll definitely post stuff that I really like or dislike as it happens.
God, I want this to come to Europe soon. It’s one of the few JRPGs I’m actually looking forward to, instead of playing out of obligation.
shakes the NTSC stick of European hate Ha-Ha!
Rogue Galaxy is actually one of the few games I’ve been looking forward to, so I’m interested to hear how it holds up in the long term. Keep the posts coming Ciddy.
I could’ve sworn that said “Jew RPGs.”
I’m another hour in. The characters are colorful and interesting, and the combat is quite challenging, as well as a bit crazy. You literally have to keep track of four different gauges along with your character and all the enemies around. My main gripe is that the camera doesn’t follow the enemy you’re locked onto. It needs a VP2-style radar thingy.
Storywise it’s a little cliche so far, but I will of course reserve opinion on that till I’m further in.
There’s also a battle recorder, promising tons of SO3-style battle trophies. So far it’s just “defeat X number of enemy Y” but that’s an excellent impetus to level, IMO.
EDIT: OK, I’m about 8 hours in. There actually is a VP2-style radar, but it’s hard to go backwards to fight enemies when you can’t see them yet. -_- One cool thing is that every so often a random battle will turn into a “CHALLENGE” battle, where you have to beat enemies without taking damage, or within a time limit, or without using items, or using one character. Winning will get you special coins you can use later on.
There’s also a weapon synthesis system, where you have to use a weapon a certain number of battles until you master it, at which point you can synth it. There’s also some kind of insect raising/fighting Pokemon/chess weird hybrid, which I haven’t even started since I can’t seem to catch any bugs. >_<
The story is plodding a bit, but the gameplay more than makes up for it so far. There’s really so much to do and keep track of that you have a pretty good incentive to keep going. They’ve done an adequate job on the localization but not unbelievable. More updates later.
I picked this up little while ago and second everything you’ve said. Be careful with the weapon synthesis, it can consume your soul ;I’m about 30 hours in and have been synthesizing since about 22 when I got Deego :\
I’m a bit further in… it is a little scary that in order to synthesize a weapon you have to use it in something like 15 battles (and it might be ridiculously underpowered). Battles are getting more challenging and requiring more use of AP… luckily AP-recovering items aren’t much more expensive than HP ones. The dungeons are seeming way too long already though. -_- But no real complaints yet, other than the menus, which are getting more annoying as time goes on.
The Dungeons get longer, but they still have lots of save points in them. Yay for restoration Save Points
As for weapon synthesis, you don’t need to worry about it too much, as you pick up or buy most weapons. You can also go back to old planets after a certain point and fight the weaker enemies there, and they’ll still count for mastering weapons. I’m going to have to make a conscious effort to not go nuts on weapon synthesis anymore >_>