Star Ocean: Til the End of Time
The US version (and possibly the UK version) is actually the director's cut version of the Japanese game. It's surreal, seeing that American gamers almost never get the director's cut of ANY japanese game, much less in lieu of the original one. This version includes two new playable characters, a new dungeon, a two-player versus mode, and best of all, a reworked battle system.
But how does the actual game hold up compared to the others? Thankfully, this is the best Star Ocean game yet. The graphics are 3D, but have an anime feel to them. While this bars them from reaching FFX's level of realism, they are still beautiful to look at, and the character designs might be the Image 1 of 12. Click to enlarge
Image 1 of 12. Click to enlarge
Thankfully, Star Ocean's story will distract you from the music. While most of the story is standard fare RPG cliches, the characters are at least fun to watch as they act out this tale. And the plot actually takes a very unexpected turn towards the end. Unfortunately, you'll spend about 80% of the game seeing things you've probably seen before in other RPGs as far as storylines go. That's not to say Star Ocean's plot has no originality to it...it just takes some time and patience to get to the Image 2 of 12. Click to enlarge
Image 2 of 12. Click to enlarge
But by far, the best part of the game is the battle system. Fans of the previous game are familiar with its real-time, action oriented combat. It has been improved even further. The analog stick does not control a pointer or targeting reticle anymore (unless you manually activate it with the square button). Instead, it freely moves your character around. The X and O buttons are used for weak or strong attacks. Tapping the button results in a regular blow, and holding it down results in a battle skill. To make this feature even better, attacks can be canceled into other attacks to form chains and combos. Doing so gives you bonuses like temporary stat increases. The days of mashing on the X button to attack are gone! If you want to win a fight, you'd better learn how to effectively control your characters and create devastating 300% damage combo attacks.
Even with all this power at your disposal, the game can still be very hard, which leads to Image 3 of 12. Click to enlarge
Image 3 of 12. Click to enlarge
Even though the game is sometimes frustrating, the battle system may be the most fun one I've seen in any RPG. It is a truly interactive experience that keeps you from feeling like you're just watching these people do the work for you. No, when you slay a monster, YOU slay that monster with 10, 20, maybe even 30 hits. Is that a dragon around the corner? Bring it on...
Phoenix Wright, Ace Attorney: Justice for All“
Originally released on the DS, the Phoenix Wright series (and later the spin off Apollo Justice and the tie in game featuring Phoenix Wright rival slash childhood friend Miles Edgeworth (and I even go...
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