The lights are on
Veteran Member - Level 12
Pokemon and Strategy? YAHOO!
A lot of people think that with the release of the Vita and 3DS that the previous generation of handhelds is finally obsolete. NOT SO FAST, I say. One of the best parts about the long run of both the PSP and the NDS was the fact that so many games came out for each system- and many of those games are still some of the best games to replay. Now, if you know anything about me, you know that I'm a huge fan of SRPGs, specifically, Disgaea, which I hold to be one of the purest, closest-to-perfection SRPG systems I've ever encountered. Additionally, Disgaea bucks the SRPG stereotype- which usually involves some large war between countries and *yawn* I'm bored already- and instead focuses on irreverence, humor and strange wacky demon/angel/space explorer/who knows what else conflicts that arise. Pure genius if you ask me.
But alas, not all SRPGs can be Disgaea. I've unfortunately been burned a couple times when I tried getting some of the SRPG games for PSP (hint: if they're selling it for less than 10 bucks, it's probably a bad idea). Still other SRPGs have had mixed results- I liked J'eanne D'Arc, but the last level ramps up the difficulty to an insane level, and I'm not even sure I can beat the game because there's nowhere else I can go to grind up levels. And I also have a copy of Tactics Ogre, which comes highly recommended, but I still haven't had a chance to start playing it (I know, prioritize backlog Oni, backlog!). So of course, when I got hit with the one-two punch of both a PSP game by Sting (ZOMG ZOMG ZOMG *fangirls*) as well as a Pokemon-themed SRPG for NDS, I was pretty helpless to do anything other than hand over my money FOR TEH CUTENESS.
But first thing's first.
Gungnir- also known as "Weirdass Named Game"- but then again, it's by Sting.
Recently, I've traded my 3DS for my PSP to satisfy my on-the-go gaming itch. And Gungnir is my game of choice. If you are not familiar with the development company "Sting," they were also responsible for "Riviera," "Yggdra Union," and "Knights in the Nightmare." As you can see, they also have a habit for making up weird names for their games. The one thing I can say about Sting is that they really do lovingly craft all of their games. The character models are beautifully rendered, and the character interactions and stories are quite intense. You're given the ability to make choices that can affect the outcome of your game as well. The most interesting thing is that you can also see small little Easter Eggs- mostly names from characters or weapons from past Sting games that you'd only really know about if you'd played them.
What is this- I don't even....huh?
Another thing you ought to know about Sting is that they are sort of notorious for making really "crowded" games. As you can see in the screenshot above, it can be really confusing to try and play a game like this, even though it's really good at giving you tutorials (which are also really detailed as well). There is a time clock that you can manipulate for various boosts or drawbacks as well as a bunch of extras that I haven't yet been able to unlock, but needless to say, it's still quite fun to use various tactical strategies to attempt to win each stage. Unlike in Disgaea, if your allies die or "retreat" from battle, you may not be able to use them again, and if you do, they can be significantly lower in level and stats, so that's a little different than your average SRPG, and you have to factor that into your playing style. Of course, you can hire and recruit "throwaway" characters so it's not horribly sad if they all die, but you will lose the equipment they're equpped with, so it can still be a net loss. And each battle has a designated "Ace"- a character who is not allowed to die or the game will be over. There are some time limits and the timer clock will keep track of day and night for the battles- so you can see your progress.
This game was produced and lovingly translated by Atlus! Woo!
I must also say that the game is well priced. I got it new for $30.00 and even though I've been playing for a good three hours, I've still only just finished most of the tutorials (this game is complicated and not really a "newbie" game if you've never played SRPGs) and the first episode. While it may take some getting used to (I didn't realize that the PSP thumbstick was the control to turn the stage so you can see behind building and stuff for at least three stages- boo), the game is definitely worth it, and even though it still plays to the old "warring kingdoms" trope, there's still some humor and the characters are well written. All in all, I highly recommend this to people who like SRPGs and have been looking to fill the void after beating Disgaea. Plus, with the beautiful cut scenes and art, you'll have plenty of anime eye-candy to drool at when you're not strategizing and trying to figure out exactly what all that dang text on the screen actually MEANS.
What? Ancient Japan + Pokemon? SIGN ME UP PLZ!
This brings me to Pokemon Conquest- which actually just got released today! If you were awesome and preordered from GameStop, they'll give you some extra codes for some other cool characters, but if you didn't, don't despair. The game still hasn't allowed me to use the codes even though I've already played through the first warlord castle, so it might not even allow me to do it until after I've gotten much further, or even beaten the game! Basically, this game combines my three favorite things- cute anime characters, cute Pokemon and turn based tactics! While it may look a bit confusing at first, this game is actually a lot more simpler than Gungnir, and would be perfect for a beginner. But don't be fooled- this game has plenty of fun available for seasoned SRPG fans as well!
Free stuff for getting your favorite games? Say no more!
The other nice thing is that you get a bonus from Club Nintendo (if you are a member) for purchasing t
his game new. I received 40 points for putting in the little serial number (that comes inside the case for the game) and answering a short survey (it took maybe 3 minutes). If you have not already signed up for Club Nintendo, I highly recommend it- you can get all sorts of coinage towards real-life swag or actual games for your systems. And the best part is that if you have a Wii or a 3DS, you can get coins for doing things like downloading Netflix or Nintendo Video- or any of the many free applications that are available for the systems. If you have the time and you love free stuff, what do you have to lose?
Pictured Here: Epic Poke-Battle of Epicness
Ostensibly, I haven't gotten super far in this game simply because it was only released today, but I've spent a good hour or so playing through the beginning and I've enjoyed it. The game is set up on a grid/field area like most SRPGs, and you can use the stylus or the arrow keys (your choice) to move your units around. You have options to fight and wait, as well as possible special moves if certain criteria are met. Plus your "warlord" (human character) can offer support moves such as potions to heal or spells that increase stats in various ways. For each Pokemon on the battlefield, you have a warlord who commands it. And each Warlord basically just listens to your main character and does what you tell them to do. The ideal is to recruit as many warlord/pokemon combos so you can kick major butt, and obviously there is more to the game as it progresses. For now, though, I'm still working on getting through the first couple levels, so needless to say, it's going to be a long, fun ride (plus the cutscenes are hilarious, so there).
^ My face upon playing a new SRPG.
To be fair, I haven't been this excited about new games in awhile- so this really feels good for me. I was playing through Master Quest on my copy of Ocarina of Time, but you know how it can be- even the different levels lose their luster after a bit. I needed something completely different to play, and it looks like these SRPGs are going to be the ticket. Of course, it also helps that my daughter is visiting with my parents for the next two weeks (she's doing swimming lessons and since my mom teaches kindergarten and has a background in preschool, my daughter is having a blast with finger painting, sand-shaping, play dough, etc). With all the stuff she's doing, I hope she has some time to miss my husband and I as well! And even though I miss my little girl, it's giving me some time to play games, post blogs that I've been wanting to get out into the world to run errands and generally try and unwind a little (I got to take a nap last night- BOOYAH! Yes, parents say "booyah" about getting extra sleep. It's a sleep deprivation thing.).
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed my blog, and I also have a couple questions for you, my dear readers.
Do you tend to play SRPGs or are you more of a fan of real-time strategy?
What is your favorite SRPG?
What is the most infuriating problem that you encounter with most SRPG games?
And finally, do you think that Gungnir or Pokemon Conquest sound like they would be your kind of game?
I look forward to hearing from you, as always!
Awhile back I asked you what games I should get if I got a DS (finally got one at a yardsale btw), one of your suggestions was Disgaea. I later got it for my PSP (well, my brothers PSP, but he never uses it). I'm pretty sure Disgaea is the first SRPG I have played and it is now a new-found favorite genre of mine.
Recently I borrowed Valkyria Chronicles from a friend, and yes, it's two warring factions fighting it out over a valuable resource called "Ragnite", but I've been having a blast playing through it.
I was quite surprised when I discovered how much I love TBS/SRPG's, considering how impatient I can be. I will still get annoyed when the enemy is taking an overly long turn, but I prefer it over the stress of RTS games.
Hello everyone has it going first time poster long time reader. I have to say my favorite SRPG is got to be the Fire Emblem series I've always enjoyed the story and loved the game play there has been few better thrills then beating SS without losing anyone.
My favorite SRPG is Fire Emblem by far it's such a great game, but I'm currently playing through a Japan released only SRPG called ASH:archaic sealed heat so we'll see how that goes.
Most infuriating problem is in Fire Emblem with permanent death getting hit by a critical hit when the enemy had only a 1% chance of pulling it off and losing that character forever.
And Finally yes Pokemon Conquest sounds awesome as does Gungnir. I'd pick up both to be honest.
WOO!!! Pokemon Conquest! I picked it up yesterday and I had to force myself to turn it off so that I could go to bed at a decent hour. As for the password codes that came with it. Each password unlocks wild Pokemon to link with, but they only appear in a certain town. If you haven't conquered that town, it will reject the password (but at least it'll tell you that it was the correct password). Be sure to save immediately after using it because they only appear once and you only get one shot at linking with them. Personally, Scyther is my favorite so far.
That said, love SRPGs and a few RTS when its based off a loved franchise (Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds/Halo Wars). I personally enjoyed the Luminous Arc games, though the story could've used a few tweaks. Fire Emblem always has some cool environments and characters. I haven't had the opportunity to play any of the Disgaea games, yet but I'm considering picking up #3 for the Vita. My absolute favorite has to be the Valkyria Chronicles series though, as it is the perfect blend of action-oriented strategy. It's got a neat story and awesome characters too.
Interestingly enough, the one thing I hate about SRPG games sometimes is when I can't save in the middle of the battle and I end up losing a character because of some random, un-forseen environment damage. I hate losing characters, and I always end up having to restart the battle.
Anyway, nice blog once again! It's always a pleasure reading your stuff.
I love SRPGs, I just wish I hadn't sold my PSP after hearing you mention how many good SRPGs are on the system. Have you ever played Fire Emblem? The GBA ones are a bit hard to find, but they're totally worth it.
I unfortunately haven't had too much experience with SRPGs but I do highly enjoy what I've played. Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced ate up months of my time. I preordered Conquest from Amazon, but it hasn't even shipped yet which is weird and unfortunate.
I absolutely love SRPG games, and consider them to be some of my favorites. Mainly because they actually require some major thought.
As for my favorite, that is held by Final Fantasy Tactics, which is fairly over complicated, but still awesome with some easter egg characters and a really fun class system. Not to mention that farming stuff was both fun and easy, and it really gave your characters a sense of empowerment against the bosses.
I would say that the thing that infuriates me the most is when a game has permanent character death in a series where it is fairly easy to die *cough*Fire Emblem*cough*. I still like the games, but when healing a character is hard, and dying is easy, permanent character death doesn't make much sense, gameplay wise.
And both of these games sound right up my alley. Gugnir for the over complicated stuff that I will know like the back of my hand after playing for a while, and Pokemon Conquest to scratch that Pokemon and strategy urge at the same time. Now if only they would do a Kingdom Hearts one...
I am way behind on reading some of your blogs (sorry!) but I am a huge fan of SRPG's. I got Conquest day 1 and am super busy with the different scenarios they give you later on. I need to get Gungnir soon (just like you need to PLAY Tactics Ogre) as well as the recently released Record of Agarest War 2. If you love SRPG's and haven't played any of the RoAW games, then I don't know what to say. Lots of anime eye candy plus LOADS of characters, battle strats, as well as lengthy game time to stretch our your dollar!