Fullmetal: Yeah, I can understand how the whole “fake incest” angle in TOL can bother people; the reason it doesn’t bother me was that I saw through it right away (what can I say, I have plenty of writing experience ). Besides, the characters themselves never believed they were related, so their relationship was never truly incestuous in any sense. I would still not have used that approach for a game, but other than that, I like all the characters and their plotlines (so far.)
Thanks for the Tales tips, I’ll definitely check them all when I can (though right now I’m limited to PS2 and Super Game Boy games.)
Which means that if you like to play the role of someone who fireballs their way through doors or doesn’t let the enemies “surprise” them and get away with the key/girl/McGuffin, you’ll have a hard time role playing. Actually in non-western rpgs you’ll do.
@Wil: Actually, I meant I didn’t like how shy Senel and Shirley were around each other. That and always having to save Shirley over and over. But I’ll admit I didn’t care for the fake incest.
Also TOA is for the PS2. TOS is for the gamecube so you might have to skip that one.
Rig: Yeah, roleplaying in Japanese games is actually pretty limited, and often plain doesn’t make sense, such as with the “why don’t we just blast the locked door?” question. To be honest, I’ve always seen RPG video games as animated movies where you have to fight to see what happens, and not the other way around. (Keep in mind, folks, that I came onto video games from playing RPG games (I was playing tabletop RPGs since the 80’s) not the other way.)
Fullmetal: Yeah, their romantic shyness is annoying (and so are many of the characters’ other flaws, like Senel being so distrustful.) However, the game seems to do a good work of explaining why the characters are like that, and allows them to grow beyond it, like any good story should. At least, so I’ve found so far. (Also keep in mind that the Japanese are more romantically shy by nature than we are. Even kissing seems a big deal to them, at least in most Animes.)
OK, at about 50+ hours, I "finished’ the game. It’s technically over since I got ending credits and all… except it ISN’T over, it moved into the “Character Quests” section, which I assume are meant to solve the PC plotlines left unanswered during the main game. This is an unusual setup for an RPG, but I’m actually happy about it; characterization is definitely this game’s biggest strength, and having a section focus on each character is a great idea.
Btw, I almost got my ass handed to me by the last Boss! Unlike most of the game, where I just let the characters fight on their own, I actually had to interfere or they would’ve been wiped out. I still ended with two characters “dead.” Hardest Boss fight I’ve had in years! (Maybe if I’d learned how to use the game’s “Limit Break” system it would have been easier. But as I said before, I don’t even have the game’s instruction booklet.)
Btw: Is there no Voice Acting in the Character Quest section? So far, I’ve only heard it during the skit segments, but no longer in regular conversations. Too bad, because I find the VA in this game excellent, complimenting some great dialog.
I’m now doing Will’s quest, who is my favorite character. Reminds me a lot of- myself.
I enjoyed ToL. The battlesystem is boring and tedious…well tedious because of the high encounter rate and backtracking. But I thought the characters had great interaction. They really entertained and I grew attached to them. To get the lowdown on eres developing your best bet is gamefaqs…even if you don’t like it. If I remember you have to fight a certain amount of creatures of a certain type to acquire certain eres. The requirements should be listed on one of the menus.