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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:09 am 


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Joined: 26 Nov 2011
Posts: 232
Obscura wrote:
Finally started MoC last night.

Oooof... this isn't good. It's like someone combined the worst parts of Ys SEVEN and Ys VIII's combat systems into one horrible clusterfuck. It's got Ys VIII's "you really should flash guard EVERYTHING, it's not a niche-option" focus going on, but with the weird unintuitive hitboxes and timings of Ys SEVEN.

Starting to see why people thought Ys VIII was OK. Not because it's OK (it's not), but MoC sure seems to set the bar awfully low.


Well I played VIII on the PS4, and MoC on the Vita. In graphics/engine terms they're a world apart.

Aside from some ill-advised plot twists, VIII held my interest throughout the main story.
MoC didn't. (gave up at some point)


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:35 am 


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Posts: 1755
I'm giving up on MOC. Stuck at the first sidequest midboss, any hit kills a character in one hit and I can't find the flash guard timing after about 20 minutes of attempts. Game fucking sucks.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:49 am 


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Joined: 08 Mar 2015
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Location: Québec City
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Last edited by FinalBaton on Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:49 am 


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Joined: 18 Feb 2011
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Location: Denmarku
VIII is like a non-sucky version of MoC with more variation and an interesting story.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:05 pm 


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I didn't love MoC but I didn't hate it like some seem to do. I also didn't really have any trouble with it that I can remember.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:40 pm 


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I knew full well from the beginning that I wasn't going to like Ys: Memories of Celceta very much. Looking at the gameplay footage I could see the lousy party system from Ys Seven was still in place with barely any other changes in place, other than Adol donning his iconic silver armor in favor of some fujoshibait outfit. Yet I was still curious to see if Falcom even realized how much more limiting Ys Seven's gameplay was compared to the Oath-era games, and did some heavy work under the hood to realize the true potential of the party system.

Spoiler: show
They didn't, really.

The base mechanics are virtually unchanged from Seven, so you're better off reading my previous post about Seven to get a better grasp of why the new party system plain sucked compared to the Oath-era games. But here's a brief summary:

Flash Guarding is still present and FGing everything is still the most dominant strategy given the amount of extra SP and EXTRA gauge it gives you, on top of a brief damage boost. Dungeons are still repetitive monster gauntlets with the occasional puzzle which comes down to just equipping a key item. Bosses are still bulletsponge Flash Guard timing memorizers, and 90% of all boss fights play out exactly the same because every attack is parriable. Overworld combat is fast and snappy, but also way too mindless and repetitive because of the ineffectual enemy design and non-existent encounter composition. EXTRA skills still take forever to charge and don't even deal that much damage to the overly tanky bosses. Most of the playable characters play too similarly, with most characters having Skills too identical to others'. Party AI is still dumb as rocks who use only randomly selected skills. What each EXTRA skill does and how much exact damage a Skill does is still guesswork. There's still boss attacks which require you to switch to another character to deal with it, but then are total bullshit when you have one party member remaining. It's still common to have the party member you control die and then the next party member you're automatically switching to take damage from the same attack you couldn't possibly react to in time. Party members still take damage when you aren't controlling them, unless you set their AI to evasive and have them essentially do nothing, at which point there's no point in having a party of characters when none of them are going to do anything as you might as well change party members with different DMC styles for Adol.

The actual additions and new things to mess around with are rather minor. Overworld combat has more of a focus on air comboing now, where the idea is to launch an enemy and repeatedly juggle him in the air which makes the enemy drop bonus gold and HP like a piñata, which is actually quite fun, though a bit inconsistent to pull off when not every enemy can get launched in the first place, and the amount of HP dropped is completely useless to begin with. There's a Skill Finish bonus where if you finish an enemy off with a Skill, you get half of your spent SP back, which is nice and keeps you more in the heat of the action. Lastly there's an Excellent Kill bonus where you get extra XP and mats for killing an enemy with a character that enemy has a weakness to, which is kind of redundant when such enemies are usually largely damage resistant to all other characters so you'd naturally be switching to said character in the first place.

As for the good news, there's been a lot of QoL changes. Charge attacks automatically charge when you're not attacking, so you don't have to hold down attack all the time. Flash Guarding is done by pressing a single button instead of having to press two at once for whatever reason. Sidequests are now consolidated to a central quest board for each town, which although cliché means less going-in-each-house-and-talking-to-each-NPC-to-ensure-you're-not-missing-a-sidequest. In Seven you had to find some upgrade before your charge rate and SP gain were doubled to an actually tolerable rate, but in MoC the doubled Seven rate is the default starting rate, so the early-game isn't so insufferable in terms of using skills like it was in Seven. You can also teleport between status right off the bat before you get the key item that lets you teleport from any point, though the former is a bit unnecessarily cumbersome in that you can only teleport between statues of the same color, and if you want to get to the ones of the other color you have to do a bit of footwork, which seems unnecessary to me.

The AGL and DEX stats are omitted so only STR and DEF remain, which is a welcome change as random chances to avoid all damage or deal bonus damage don't have a place in twitch action games such as the Ys series, nor did the opportunity ever exist to really build characters around the former stats in Seven.

The amount of grinding is heavily reduced. For starters, weapon synthesizing is completely gone. You can only find new gear in treasure chests on the field or available in stores for gold, so no more material grinding. There's a new Weapon Reinforcement system in its place, but more on that later. The amount of grinding for skills is also much lesser as skills can only level up to LV3 instead of LV9 which took ages in Seven to max out. There's no endgame grind for getting the highest gear tier, instead it's obtained by finding rare mats in treasure chests and then doing a certain sidequest.

You can now also see the amount of range, damage, stun, and area of effect for each skill, but it's only displayed through abstract colored bars, so you still have to guess how much damage a skill does exactly. Information concerning your EXTRA skill is also still completely hidden other than its name. Now you can also press L3 to see an enemy's level and weaknesses, which can give you a decent indication of whether you're actually underleveled or not.

The PC port also adds some useful features such as being able to disable the obnoxious bloom native to a lot of Vita games, increased object draw distances, increased resolutions, higher quality everything, auto-save, and being able to skip cutscenes/text by 32x instead of the normal 16x, which is even better.

Your party members are a bit more varied in function in terms of Skills than they were in Seven. There's a bit more in the way of support skills instead of launchers and AoE slams everywhere. Frieda can buff your ATK, Ozma can buff your DEF, Duren can cast an aura to make himself do critical damage while all damage taken is critical, and Calilica can call some extra orbs to deal extra damage in the background on top of her regular attacks. It's not much, but it's something. The only difference between party members still remain their regular attack combo, damage type and their Skill set, yet the skill set of almost each character consists of at least a launcher, an AoE spin, a conical AoE attack, a stinger, some kind of ranged shockwave, another kind of launcher, and a powerful single attack/attack flurry.

From a general perspective on action games it makes sense that each character would have their own variation on an essential move, but when you're controlling three characters at once this only results in a lot of redundancy. It's because the characers are too generalized in their skillsets with little in the way of character-specific weaknesses such as not being able to roll or do X thing while of excelling in another area other characters can't, that it doesn't feel like there's a choice to be made or a need to adapt your party composition to any obstacles you face, making the whole system feel rather shallow. While the SP system makes one party member more suitable for generating SP and others more suitable for dealing damage, then all you technically need for that purpose is two party members. The rest would be, again, redundant. What party members you end up picking are usually more of a matter of preference.

What's strange is that MoC unnecessarily regresses in some ways too. You can no longer see the stun gauge on regular enemies (granted, it was pointless most of the time since you'd kill most enemies before their stun gauge could even be filled, but it was helpful on spongier enemies), only on bosses.

But most bosses are completely resistant to stun. On the rare occasion when you can fill up the stun gauge, it always occurs right at the end of the boss fight (on Nightmare difficulty anyways) where the ensuing damage you deal while the boss is stunned (bosses take extra damage when stunned) is most of the time a guaranteed kill. But the process of 'deal damage so the boss gets stunned and you can safely deal more damage' seems entirely redundant to me when you'll of course be dealing damage to kill it in the first place. You have more control over this by attacking the boss with skills with a high stun-value, but the end result of that is only you performing more stun skills, which doesn't even work most of the time when most bosses seem invulnerable to stun. I don't see the point of the stun mechanic here at all.

One thing I thought was missing from Seven in MoC were the Rush moments in Seven's boss fights where the boss would charge up a very powerful attack, and you had to deal a lot of damage in a short displayed time limit in order to prevent him from unleashing that attack, and if you did the attack would get interrupted and the boss would get stunned. MoC doesn't have this, or to be more precise, it doesn't show the obvious indicator showing you how much damage you had to deal on the boss and how much time there was left. A handful of bosses in MoC will actually do these kind of attacks. However, damaging them while they're charging up will only fill the stun bar, interrupting the attack when the stun gauge has been filled in time, which may not be immediately obvious when you're more likely to be conditioned to ignore the stun gauge altogether. What's more, the damage required to interrupt the attack is downright silly and often impossible to achieve without severe level grinding or using your EXTRA. At least it's like that on Nightmare.

Although MoC uses the camera in more special ways for certain areas to frame some environments in a more unique manner instead of with the standard isometric viewpoint, for boss fights the camera often shifts from an isometric perspective to floating behind the player character. This way you often can't see what's happening behind, which can be particularly annoying in some boss fights which feature rebounding or homing attacks. I don't really get the point of this, the isometric camera of the 3D Ys games have never gotten in the way, unlike with camera systems for a lot of other 3D hack 'n slash games.

In Seven you'd gain new Skills by using the skills embedded in new weapons until you'd permanently learn them and could use them independently from the weapon. In MoC I don't have an exact idea of how you get new skills at all, because it's completely behind the scenes. You just get them at complete random while fighting enemies. You could die shortly after getting a new skill and reload a save, and that skill just won't come to you. Apparently it has to do with your character having to use skills against higher level enemies in order to earn new skills, but I have no idea whether that's true or not. Regardless, my characters have learned plenty of skills without worrying about where they come from, though I can't say I appreciate being completely left in the dark about something as important as Skills. Make a note to yourself to save right after getting a new one, though.

Each town now has a special type of vendor, which means if you want to get something special done you have to quick travel to that town first, which only results in a lot of downtime going back and forth when you're tending to your equipment. There's no reason why all vendor types couldn't be consolidated into more universal vendors or placed together in the same building so you don't have to constantly go back and forth.

You can no longer disable skills on party members. In Seven when you'd perform a Skill, your party members would also perform a randomly selected skill of equal SP cost in their repertoire. But to have better control over what skills the AI uses, you could disable any skill so the AI wouldn't use it. It wasn't the most elegant solution to the problem that you had no real control over what the hell your AI-controlled party members were doing, but it was something at least. That MoC does away with this completely is just being rude.

MoC goes even further with status ailments (the least fun part of the Ys series, Satan knows everybody really loved the status ailment cave in Ark) by introducing dumb shit such as Misfortune, which causes afflicted party members to drop money when hit by an enemy, and a percentage of the money lost is lost PERMANENTLY. If you consider that playing on Nightmare reduces the gold you gain by a large percentage, that can set you back from buying a new piece of gear tremendously. Misfortune takes forever to wear off and accessories to prevent it are rare, so you can only switch out the afflicted party member or go back to a statue, maybe reload a save when you lost too much dosh. Burn very quickly reduces your HP to 0, unless you quickly switch to another character after which point the afflicted character will survive with only 1HP remaining because of how AI-controlled party members work. Paralysis is inflicted by enemies everywhere, but it's only a mild annoyance by having your character stop moving for a brief second as they're constantly playing their pain noises. It sounds absolutely ridiculous, unless hearing this sort of thing turns you on.

Party member presence effects are reduced to just two, depending on your party composition. In Seven each party member had its own party effect when assigned to the main party, like increased EXP/Gold/Stun/SP gained/whatever. It gave party members a more distinct role and usage in your party even if you didn't plan on directly controlling that party member. But now in MoC, if you have to characters with the same damage type, then all characters will deal more damage (a 10% damage increase by my estimates), and if you have one of each type, then you will have a higher chance of enemies dropping stuff. Basically it means the former is more suited for boss fights while the later is more suited for fighting regular enemies if you want more mats, but mats in MoC are nowhere as important as they were in Seven, so you might as well go for the extra damage. Most of the time it's not even a question, more damage is the best option. Not having access to all damage types at once is a minor inconvencience solved by quickly shuffling party members around in the pause menu. The only thing mats are good for are for synthesizing potions, and slapping upgrades on your gear through the Reinforcement system.

Instead of synthesizing weapons you have reinforcing gear. With some gold and materials, you can slap on a bunch of extra effects on your gear. For weapons you can increase the damage dealt, SP gained, health absorbed, crit chance, chance of status ailment afflicted, that kind of thing. Armor can be upgraded to tank even more damage or to reduce the duration of certain status ailments. You can upgrade a weapon as much as you'd like, there's no limit at all. Only the gold price increases each time you slap on another upgrade.

However, this system is completely pointless. The main reason is that while you could spend all that shit on upgrading your Wooden Sword +461, it's stacks of materials spent you can no longer upgrade a stronger Iron Sword with, which has a much higher base damage. Every type of material can be combined with others of the same ones to create stronger versions of said material, so even shit dropped by low-level mobs has its use in creating high-level upgrades. Taking in account that you will be constantly finding new gear with better base stats, upgrading your current weapon means that you can't upgrade future weapons as much which can benefit of said upgrades more strongly.

And if you take this train of thought all the way to its end destination, you'll end up near the endgame with the weapon of the highest tier in your hands, and only by then will you get the feeling that you won't be wasting your materials if you start reinforcing stuff. If weapon upgrades could be carried over between gear somehow, or if they worked like the weapon upgrades in Oath where you can only upgrade gear up to a maximum level of three, then it wouldn't feel like you're wasting your resources as much, as the ore costs for upgrading gear in Oath-era games matched the gear tier where lower tier gear had low ore costs to go from LV1 to LV2 whereas higher tier gear had higher costs to make the same jump. In Oath investing in upgrades with the amount of ore you have at any respective point in the game is usually reasonable.

In MoC upgrades always start out cheap, but when you can apply an infinite amount of upgrades, when will it be enough? That's why you need a limit of possible upgrades applicable, you keep thinking that if you save up your mats that you can make a stronger weapon even stronger. Until you get all the way to the end and realize you didn't need the weapon upgrades at all to beat most enemies to begin with. It's a poorly thought-out system, but unlike weapon synthesizing it is harmless and can be completely ignored.

Each party member has a special action they can perform in the overworld, such as unlocking special chests, breaking walls, covering up things with patches of ice, that kind of thing, though this doesn't add anything at all. All you do is select the right character, walk up to the spot to perform your special action, and press Y as you watch a cutscene play out. This is the same for any character. I guess they're supposed to make each party member feel useful, but it just feels cheap and unexciting. The Legend of Zelda sure has shown a lot more potential for puzzle solving mechanics than walking up to something and pressing the button prompt on the screen to solve it.

MoC does actually feature some more puzzles than Seven, which had practically none at all, though they are still rare, and still very simple. Usually you're just slotting together puzzle pieces, though there was an interesting dungeon room in the final dungeon where you had to rotate the platforms around in a certain formation so you could actually progress from A to B, though in practice it ends up coming down to a lot of trial and error and walking back and forth until you figure out a correct path to get all the treasure chests. I do wish the puzzling could be integrated more with the combat mechanics, like how Oath/Origin had you also use your special powers for platforming and sometimes puzzle challenges too. That lent them a greater sense of depth. One thing MoC constantly does which irks me to no end is that whenever you interact with something in the environment, like doing a special character action or flipping a switch, the game takes control away from you and slowly pans over to whatever place happens to change because of your action, which is also completely unskippable. The unskippability is bad, but the amount of times this happens just made me want to quit.

MoC features its own batch of key items, like a bracelet which shrinks your party to the size of a thumb in order to squeeze into smaller gaps, scales which let you breathe underwater, claws which change your dodgeroll to a damaging tackle, shoes which act like the Speed Booster in Super Metroid, and some other stuff like faster HP recovery on standing still, larger item attraction radius, faster EXTRA gain, and the Roo transformation amulet from Ys II. Once again, the puzzles for these items only involve equipping them for the right situations, and the situations where you actually need said key item are very sparse before they're dropped for the next on.

What I don't get is why most of these items aren't permanent upgrades instead of items you have to switch out, because the game could easily work just fine with the former. There's no reason why you'd take away your ability to breathe underwater, the tackle item is a straight-up upgrade for your dodgeroll, the running shoes require you to hold the dodge button to run (which you never have a reason for otherwise) and could easily work as a part of your core moveset, while the increased recovery speed and EXTRA gain have no downsides to them and could as well be permanent upgrades. The only items you'd want to turn on/off are the Dwarf Bracelet and Roo Transformation amulet, since you don't always want to be small or a Roo. Shrinking as a combat mechanic could be interesting, though. As it stands, making everything a separate item you constantly have to equip/unequip if you want to switch things around is just cumbersome.

Swimming underwater in MoC is also a thing. It doesn't get used that often aside from one or two dungeons, and some hidden underwater chests in the overworld. The underwater sections don't add much, there are some puzzles which could as well have worked on the surface without any swimming, and underwater combat is completely terrible. Regardless of what character you pick while swimming underwater, you can only do a single slow attack with tons of recovery which even doesn't lead up to a combo, and Skills can't be used underwater either.

But by far the biggest change for the worse is that there's no limit to the amount of potions you can carry (technically there's a maximum of 99, but let's not split hairs here), meaning you can easily potionchug yourself through each encounter. The lack of infinite healing at hand is what made the Ys games work. The Steam trailer for Oath in Felghana even advertises this fact. Although Ys Seven had potions, it did limit the amount you could carry which became smaller on lower difficulties. There's no challenge if you can pause at any moment and heal yourself all the way up over and over, beating bosses despite taking hit after hit. Why bother learning how the game works when you can tank through any encounter? It becomes impossible to tell whether bosses are balanced around potion usage or not, because most bosses are ridiculously tanky while shaving off half of your health bar per hit on Nightmare difficulty. Boss fights become so fucking repetitive that you almost feel nudged to chug potions anyways to get it over with already, when all you do is spam skills and flash guard when necessary. In some way I was grateful for this change, because it let me get the game over with faster.

Though from another perspective, if the game itself turns out to be a repetitive borefest like MoC did, then being given the means to tank your way through can only be appreciated. At first I was trying to beat bosses the classic no-potions hard way, but after a while I couldn't help but say "no!" and just start overdosing on potions. Incidentally, my mother did tell me alcoholism ran in the family. I guess it's like how being able to quicksave everywhere makes shitty levels more bearable whereas it only rubs more salt in the wound if there's only checkpoints, forcing you to redo the same shitty stretches of the level. It only allows for more cheesing, but it can be considered a blessing if the game is drek than having to beat things the hard way.

Another thing I noticed is that leveling up your characters and skills doesn't matter that much. At least, not as much as it did in the Oath-era game where one level could make a significant difference. In MoC it doesn't matter a lot whether you're LV21 or LV22 when fighting something. The STR/DEF increase when leveling is a lot more incremental here. The gear you have equipped has more of an impact on how long it takes to kill stuff. Grinding doesn't pay off as much here, so I found it odd how I could kill monsters several levels higher than me without any problem, even though my party members where saying it's better that we back off. But even if you were to grind yourself up to the level of the boss, they are still going to deal tons of damage and take tons of damage.

Leveling in Ys always existed to give you a reason to kill things. Else you could just run past all enemies, since you'd have no reason to kill them anyways. With leveling you at least want to kill enemies so you can get strong enough when you have to deal with something you can't run away from. The alternatives would be locking the player in each time or presenting enemies which make it harder for the player to run away from everything. Ys games aren't completely linear and you will find yourself backtracking minor sections for whatever reasons quite often, so said options may be more annoying than anything. In the Oath-era games the leveling did present a strange balancing problem where from one level you're dealing fuck-all damage but if you level up one more time you suddenly find yourself dealing respectable amounts of damage. Then you could grind even further and deal ridiculous amounts of damage that can straight up invalidate some parts of boss fights.

I think that it'd be fine if the only reason there was for killing enemies (other than being just fun to do) is for gold. Having both progression through XP-driven linear character leveling and finding better gear is kind of superfluous. Ditching leveling in favor of gear-only progression would be much easier to balance around when you have a better idea of what the player will have equipped at certain points in the game, and do away with a lot of unnecessary grinding. Well, you'd be grinding gold instead so you can buy that one stronger weapon, but at least that gives you a better idea what the "recommended" tier of gear is for each area. In MoC character leveling is so ineffectual that I'm wondering why they didn't make the full shift to gear progression-only to begin with.

And even then I'm disappointed that the difference between gear tiers doesn't feel that major either. The highest-possible-tier doomsday weapons forged with ancient ore found only in very limited quantities around the world I also had to do a whole chain of sidequests for to obtain, only did +20 more damage compared to the last tier of weapons I had, which had like a base of 230 DMG. The bonus damage was only barely felt on the bosses I had to fight.

The most noticeable change is that the overworld is much more expansive and open than in Seven. There's a lot more side areas and shortcuts to find. The first part of the game unceremoniously just throws you into the wide open world with no set objective other than to explore the shit out of it until you find something interesting. It's practically devoid of any story at all, and almost feels like a traditional dungeon crawler. It's actually quite refreshing to be just let loose and do your own thing. You don't have the fast travel item at this point, so continuing a trek in the hopes of finding the next statue or going back to a previous save statue in order to heal up is still a thing to consider at this point. It's not the same when you can fast travel from anywhere.

However, in terms of pacing the overworld is rather stretched out. The amount of enemy types you face are very small for the amount of space you'll end up covering, as the same enemy types are reused for way too many 'rooms' in a row, leading to a lot of identical combat challenges being constantly reused with nothing to mix it up. For the second half the game just abandons trying to shoot for the feeling of non-linearity in the overworld as things start getting a lot more linear, which kind of goes against the whole explorer thing MoC is trying to make you feel through map completion.

Some Roman lady asks you to map out the whole island, for some unrelated reason, which you do automatically by walking around new parts of the world. Dungeons thankfully don't count for filling up the map. For every 10% of the map completed you get some dosh, so it doesn't hurt to walk around some more. You can tell by the black squares on the minimap where you have to walk to fill up the map, and with some medium effort you can get the whole map filled out that way. However, the completion gains are weird in some places, so if you want to reach 100% you have to start hugging some walls until it fills up your completion percentage after filling up everything else the regular way. The game is thankfully more lenient in this regard where the overworld can technically fill up to 105% or more, but you only need 100%.

You don't have to go for the 100%, but videogames have conditioned me to believe that if I don't fulfill some overarching challenge or requirement that I will receive a bad ending or miss out on something. Thankfully that's not the case here. The only reward you get for reaching 100% is more dosh and the Ares Seal, which makes your EXTRA gauge fill up faster. You don't need EXTRA attacks that badly to beat the game, so you are free to just ignore the whole map completion challenge. Though I do wish the area detection was more lenient so you don't have to hug any walls at all to get 100%. The reward item makes EXTRA fill at a reasonable rate (it doesn't take forever to fill up anymore) which matches its actual usefulness more. In boss fights EXTRA attacks only make a minor dent in the boss' health bar, which makes them feel somewhat anti-climactic. But with this item you can use EXTRA attacks more frequently, making the amount of charging required actually match their damage output more. I still feel that the EXTRA gauge gain rate with the Ares Seal should have been the default one. Normally the EXTRA gauge takes so long to fill up that you'd just ignore it until you suddenly find it got filled up again.

I'm also incredibly miffed that you don't get full HP on leveling up anymore. Being fully healed on leveling is one of those things that kept you going forwards and risking killing more monsters to get that last bit of needed XP, instead of constantly having to go back to heal up, stand still and do nothing while your Spirit Cape heals you, or down more potions.

Messing up Flash Guards no longer incurs any critical damage. Instead, you can hold down the Guard button to block any incoming attacks regardless of the timing, which only halves the taken damage. Obviously you're still going to be taking damage, so there's no point in Guarding when you might as well be dodging or going for the Flash Guard instead. And if you screw up a Flash Guard you'll only be taking 50% less damage, so it feels even more highly encouraged to spam and doesn't feel as risky to use. However, upping on lowering the punishment for messing up a high risk/reward move such as Flash Guarding is only sidestepping the main problem.

If you know the timings, Flash Guarding an incoming attack is always the best course of action. You don't get bonus damage, bonus SP, and bonus EXTRA if you roll away, so why not do it when possible? The only reason why you wouldn't do it is if you aren't sure you can do it right. It's not a calculated decision where you gauge whether Flash Guarding is right for the current situation, as you would try to gauge whether bringing a knife to a gunfight is a good idea. If there was a reason not to Flash Guard something other than not being gud enough or attacks being unparriable in the first place, then the game could at least break up the monotone dominant strategy of "FG everything".

MoC does introduce Flash Dodging, where if you dodge an attack at the right time then Witch Time is activated, and your party becomes invulnerable for a short while as time slows down around you. The effects of Witch Time can also be stacked with Flash Guarding, so you can Flash Guard an attack for bonus damage and immediately dodge afterwards to get Witch Time. Incidentally, I was only made aware of this by looking through the option menu which had an option called "Simulflash" which governed whether it can even be possible to dodge right after FG'ing, because apparently this was an unintended oversight? So you can disable the function which the option menu says to do so in order to keep it in line more with the developer's intentions... even though the option to Simulflash was enabled by default, and when I look at footage of Ys 8 I see you can still stack both effects for a Simulflash, so I can't really believe the "developer intentions" in this case.

Given MoC's combat system, Flash Dodging and Simulflashing can only be a considered a net benefit. For one, it solves the issue of having to mash FG to not take any damage until the persistent attack you were caught in finally ends, as you can press Flash Dodge right after a FG and move about freely instead of being stuck mashing FG forever. It also gives a reason for dodgerolling to exist. In Seven all it did was let you move around faster and get away faster, so you'd be constantly mashing roll if you wanted to get around or to avoid an attack the safer way. The drawbacks are that you can't attack or FG while rolling, which are quite frankly minor given how fast rolls are. You only don't roll when you're about to attack or Flash Guard, but when you're on the offense there's no real reason to roll when you can FG any incoming attack anyways. All dodging did was separate combat from movement more, like sprinting in first-person shooters. Given this I never understood why in place of having to mash dodge you can't just have a higher base movement speed and just run from attacks as you would in the Oath-era games. Or jump away, everyone dearly misses jumping.

It's still kind of wank in that Simulflashing becomes the most dominant strategy here instead of just Flash Guarding. Dodging right after a successful FG isn't particularly difficult to execute either. The only reason you'd want to mash FG to an attack is to milk more SP/EXTRA out of it, but other than that Simulflashing gives you the best window of opportunity on top of extra SP/EXTRA and damage. There's still not a lot of reason to intentionally go for only a Flash Dodge, unless the attack you're dealing with has such wonky hitboxes and timing that you have no absolutely idea how you're even supposed to FG it.

Flash Dodging is also strange in that you can get damaged by an incoming an attack you're trying to dodge and still get Witch Time regardless. Nothing sends mixed signals quite as much as trying to dodge an attack and getting punished by incurring damage for screwing it up, and getting rewarded with Witch Time for dodging it... properly? I don't even know whether this is a bug or not. Even if being able to trigger Witch Time for doing FD's imperfectly was intentional as some kind of mercy, like "you ALMOST did it right and took some damage anyways, but here's some Witch Time for trying", it only blurs the lines between a successful FD and a semi-successful FD, with it being confusing to tell how you fucked up. Moreover it also takes away a bit from doing FD's properly when the window is very lenient, but what takes away from it even more is that you can spam FD even harder than in Nier Automata.

Flash Dodging is really fucking exploitable. Basically you Flash Dodge an attack once, and if you're standing in an attack hitbox while Witch Time is still active, you can Flash Dodge again to extend the Witch Time even further. What this means is that you can stretch out an one-second enemy attack into eight seconds of invulnerability while constantly attacking the boss, sometimes even more. Now imagine this happening over several in a single fight. It's not difficult to stand inside an attack and press dodge again while invulnerable. If it's this easy to extend your Witch Time then the given amount of Witch Time might as well be over 5 seconds long to begin with in order to save everyone the inconvenience of having to rhythmically tap dodge. At least Bayonetta had you actually properly dodge attacks in real-time before you could activate Witch Time again.

And that's at least still the case with Simulflashing. While you can extend Witch Time through dodging forever, you can't Flash Guard while Witch Time is active. So you have to time your Flash Guards right at the end of your Witch Time while standing in an attack, and dodge immediately afterwards for the invincibility and full Simulfash. Simulflashing constantly is a bit harder to do, but the benefit of Simulflashing is that you do get to enjoy more of the bonus damage multipliers and extra SP and extra EXTRA, since Flash Dodging doesn't give you those bonuses. Without Simulflashing it's either mashing Flash Guard until attacks end, or stretching out game time by extending your Witch Time as much as possible with Flash Dodging. Just to point it out in case you do play with Simulflash disabled, that things aren't going to get a lot better.

The end result is that although the combat is ridiculously counter-oriented because of FG/FD to the point of making every attack the same because you can deal with almost everything the same way, Simulflashing helps more with ysing the suffering. Normally I'd take a look at how each boss in a game plays out, how the different enemy types work together... but in Seven/MoC there really is no point, unless you'd like to see twenty more paragraphs of "and then I Simulflashed everything and spammed my skills and my EXTRA when it was finally charged until the boss finally died". There's some variation here and there in how some bosses like to fly or need to have some 'soft' targets knocked out before you can deal damage to the main body, but fundamentally your approach remains the same all throughout. There is one boss where you fight a big frog and a large constantly regenerating swarm of smaller frogs which breaks the mold,

That wraps it up for the gameplay, now for the story: Adol has AmNEsIa and finds himself lost on some unknown island called Celceta. A Dogi stand-in called Duren helps him out out of the gold in his heart in order to find Adol's memories and some gold. As per Falcom tradition Miners Have Struck Upon A Monster Nest So You Are The Only One Who Can Clear Them Out And Save The Last Villagers Stuck Inside. The local Roman governess is so impressed with your deed that she gives you the task of mapping out the whole forest of Celceta, and maybe find your memories in the process.

You recover your memories by standing near blue orbs and pressing Y, which causes Adol to remember a scene from his past. This is meant to flesh out Adol's backstory and character. Adol's backstory and character. Adol's backstory and character. Erm. If you've played pretty much any Ys game other than Origin, you'll come to understand Adol's character and motivations just fine without any flashbacks. He likes adventure and traveling. He's a goody two-shoes. Women fall for him. He has bad luck with boats. So what further insight can Memories of Celceta provide us in the enigmatic character of Adol Christin? What does Adol Christin truly think and believe? What happened in Adol Christin's mysterious and dark past that could completely recontextualize all the previous Ys entries with this newfound perspective on the series' oft-silent main protagonist?

After finding all the Memories (of Celceta), you come to the shocking discovery that:

Adol wanted to become an explorer because his dad was a traveler. He also likes the help out other people.

Image

At least they didn't pull an Other M.

That goes for Adol's memories of his youth, anyways. As you rewatch your memories you discover that Adol has been going around Celceta exploring things and meeting people in other villages before you got amnesia. Except when you actually get to these villages, everyone thinks you're the bad guy and wants you dead because of some local catastrophe you apparently caused in the past, so you have to figure out what it is people are actually accusing you of and prove your innocence. This set-up is actually rather intriguing, and stops after two village before getting stale, though halfway through the game the cause behind your amnesia got explained (there's a magic field around one of the villages which makes you forget when you leave, which is kind of a mundane explanation) and all that's left after that is a straightforward macguffin hunt and trying to stop the bad guys' plan in time, which is disappointing.

The worldbuilding in MoC is some of the silliest I've ever seen. The first village you get to doesn't know that any other village exists, the second village doesn't know that any other village exists, the third village doesn't know that any other village exists, the fourth village knows all three other villages exist, but doesn't know that the fifth village exists, which in turn knows about everything going on in Celceta through some kind of spy network. While the fourth and fifth village have a reason to stay isolated, the first three villages not knowing about eachother at all despite there being a bridgeable amount of distance between them with the main characters being able to travel between them without too much of a problem (even the bumbling side-characters) with nobody else who went before having even made it that far, is only believable if you suspend your disbelief with an industrial crane.

The lack of communication between any of the villages aside from one or two traveling merchant NPCs gives the impression that Celceta is more of a massive theme park than anything. Felghana being a kingdom with only like one village where all the people in the kingdom live with the king's castle being on the other side of the land is kind of silly, though Oath did go out of its way to have the single village actually respond and get involved in the events of the world. Even in Seven the three other tribal villages had some connection to the capital city of the country and a larger role in the plot. Celceta might have had exploration as its main theme, but the microcosm of all JRPG biome tropes condensed in Seven gave a greater sense of scale than MoC's bloated overworld and overuse of forest areas.

In MoC there's no real reason to revisit each village other than for sidequests and visiting the unique merchants. For the plot the villages you visit may as well not even exist once you move on from them. Entering the final dungeon in MoC implies that the big bad is already causing apocalyptic events all over the place, but then you fast travel about and see everything is still daijobu. Seven had the whole apocalyptic collapse of the capital city and all tribes banding together to prevent things from getting out of hand, as the overworld grew an ominious dark glow for the impending apocalypse. In MoC almost nobody, or to be more precise, almost nothing outside the endgame city is even reacting to the implied consequences of some guy messing with the fabric of reality.

I think I might have been a little too harsh on Seven for being so clichéd, as my distaste for it stemmed more from the excessive length of the dialogue for a heavy action game franchise such as Ys. Memories of Celceta is even worse at this, where discovering a new village is paired with tons of dialogue and usually involves having to talk to every NPC in the village for the sake of the main quest or something (just let me kill shit damnit). Oath and Origin were suitably sparse in terms of dialogue, but from Seven onwards Falcom was really pushing it.

Halfway through somewhere right after you acquire a hammer loli (again, Falcom?) you come across God, who... isn't evil? A well-intentioned and benevolent God in a JRPG? Could this be? Could this actually be? hahahaha no he's got a split evil personality who is trying to kill you, shows you can't have everything in life. Regardless, it's an interesting concept for a benevolent divine being to selectively administer knowledge to the world as sudden bouts of "inspiration" in order to maintain some kind of balance. It's a bit silly that the only things challenging this idea is the God's repressed feelings and doubts turning him into an evil megalomaniac, and the actual main villain who wants to use the macguffin to create apocalypses everywhere because he wants to challenge humanity to see whether it's worth for them to live. Everyone who has played more than a handful of Japanese games subconsciously knows that the ending will come down to some form of "humans should decide their own path..." (unless you're some kind of shmuck who sided with Law or Chaos), though the path leading up to that point could have been fleshed out more. I know that my stance towards the dialogue in Ys games largely comes down to TURBOSKIP IT LOL, but if it's there it may as well try to be any good.

Ironically, I struggle to remember anything cool or worthwhile that stood out in Memeories of Celceta. Even Seven for all the things I disliked about it had some cool moments like the Colosseum fight, the Five Dragons, and everything leading up to and including the final boss, gameplay excluded. Seven had you first beat the guy who beat your shit in earlier on (in an unwinnable fight, but I digress), then one of the more plot-important characters turned apparently evil, before fighting the personification of Fate itself with all Seven (hue) party members split into two parties of three, each taking out a different part of the final boss, and at the top you have Adol soloing the core and final part of the boss, even though the last boss you just fought before told you that there's no way in hell you can even defeat the final boss. The thing to take away here is that everything leading up to this point and the thematic relevance of all characters fighting at once with Adol on solo duty made the final boss cooler. The journey in the Ys games was what mattered the most.

Meanwhile MoC's final dungeon involves you going through three mini-dungeons where you have to defeat the three golems at the end of each before you can get to the final room, except all these three golems are merely reskins of eachother with different attack patterns. These dungeons don't even act as a final exam for all the mechanics you've come to master throughout the game (because there's not much you can do with the Skill system and Flash moves as it is) but instead come with their own new last-minute dungeon gimmicks for some reason. The final boss has you run circles around the arena striking at some life pillars until the boss starts craning over onto the arena after which you keep slashing its head as you Flash Guard the beams it shoots from its head. Eh. No ping pong or elemental form switching or anything.

All seems fine until apparitions of the main villain start appearing everywhere in an attempt to get the macguffin, so you have to run all the way up to the volcano and throw it in to destroy it once and for all, as massive streams of apparitions rise from the ground while you are dashing all the way up to the volcano with the running boots as all party members are leaving you behind to hold off the darkness, until only you remain, which might have been even cooler if the main villain was portrayed as more menacing instead of a total twerp. You get to the top, and a phantom version of the main villain appears to challenge you on a last 1-on-1 duel on the top of a volcano. too bad he goes down like a complete chump and is a massive disappointment

It takes place on top of a volcano and there's not even punching a rock or anything. After throwing the macguffin into the volcano the ensuing earthquakes flings you along it as well, until the main waifu swoops in with her giant mecha and the game just ends there. What happened to the rest of the party members? What happened to Celceta? The game doesn't even bother to tell you other than that there was a good unspoken reason for why the story ended there, though I can't think of a reason why the game had to end on such an unsatisfying note. If anything this makes Memories of Celceta come off as a massive filler episode, there's not even the obligatory farewell at the end to connect each new chronicle as Adol sets off on another voyage by boat and the main waifu of the game appears just in time to wave him goodbye.

That's Memories of Celceta for you, I guess. A marginal improvement, though still unfathomably flawed and inflexible right from its core that makes it incapable to really change up how the player's skill in FLASH GUARDING is being tested. The party system is still unrealized potential, the boss fights are still drek, no limits on easy-to-come-by potion may ruin all challenge depending on who you ask, dungeon design is still drek, the story is even worse somehow, and the music is alright for the most part. Only play this if you liked Seven, or if you want to turn your brain off. Otherwise just don't bother with it.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:01 am 


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Durandal wrote:
Yet I was still curious to see if Falcom even realized how much more limiting Ys Seven's gameplay was compared to the Oath-era games, and did some heavy work under the hood to realize the true potential of the party system.


Still waiting for them to realise this and produce a "true sequel" to Oath of Felghana.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 11:01 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
Durandal wrote:
Yet I was still curious to see if Falcom even realized how much more limiting Ys Seven's gameplay was compared to the Oath-era games, and did some heavy work under the hood to realize the true potential of the party system.


Still waiting for them to realise this and produce a "true sequel" to Oath of Felghana.


Same here.. OoF is the best Ys followed by Origin and YI/II. The last few Ys, I didn't not like, Y8 I played it for about two hours and could not stand the gameplay and music.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 4:14 am 


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The PCE CD Ys IV still sounds like the definitive version of that game. I was hoping Falcom would make their version of Ys IV with their original intended story, but their version sounds worse than Hudson's (or whoever developed PCE Ys IV) take on it.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:20 am 


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BrianC wrote:
The PCE CD Ys IV still sounds like the definitive version of that game. I was hoping Falcom would make their version of Ys IV with their original intended story, but their version sounds worse than Hudson's (or whoever developed PCE Ys IV) take on it.

They right butchered the Dawn of Ys theme
Just compare

I consider Memories of Celceta's soundtrack to be one of the weakest modern Ys soundtracks. It's still alright overall, but in the Ys musical canon it's just eh, especially considering that the PCE OST is on a level of its own.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 4:30 pm 


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I dropped Ys Seven on the final dungeon.

And no, I didn't even get to the material grind. I just realized how boring the fighting and dungeon gauntlets were at that point.

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"Rondo of Blood / Dark Souls are just monster corridors so they suck"
-Obscura

"Ys Seven is almost the best Ys game"
-Also Obscura

smh
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 5:41 pm 


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Squire Grooktook wrote:
Image


That chart bears a strange resemblance to Heiankyo Alien!


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:22 pm 


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Squire Grooktook wrote:

"Rondo of Blood / Dark Souls are just monster corridors so they suck"
-Obscura

"Ys Seven is almost the best Ys game"
-Also Obscura

smh

Ys Seven is a monster *maze*. Important difference.

Also, there's lots of stuff other than enemies that do "lunge forward" attacks, like enemies that do spinny attacks (especially plants), birds that shoot lasers, a few enemies that do "falling meteor" attacks, etc. Ys SEVEN has more enemy variety than Origin does, which keeps using palette-swapped slimes, teleporting mages, and "jump behind them lol" knights.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:26 pm 


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A "maze" of identical interconnected arenas with absolutely no environmental interaction whatsoever lol.

Image
Tile this 30 times in various directions with a few dead ends. "Level design"


Spinny attack is literally the only thing you have to watch for because 90% of everything else is both narrow and aimed directly forward (and enemies all have this stupid resident evil tank control thing where they have to slowly rotate toward you before attacking, which takes 10 years and they'll be flanked and mashed to death by 3 people by then), making it more functionally identical than anything in felghana/origin. Even the fucking bug swarm variants in Felghana have more variety in what they do and how you handle them. More threatening too, I think I've been killed by the lowest of mooks in Felghana (hard) countless times more than even the toughest non-boss monster in Seven (Nightmare). I imagine a "monster maze" should require some threat of attention as well...

And hey, even if they do manage to rotate around or finally get off their asses and throw an attack: *~flashguard~* or the dash with nearly as many i-frames on its start and enough range to take you a million miles out of reach in any direction ^_^ Spinny attack itself is dealt with in the same way as everything else, it just bypasses the flanking somewhat.

Seven is bottom of the barrel shallow repetitive mashfest even by the standards of what modern character action has become. Even as a flashy toybox SOTN is better because at least you have to like, jump and stuff sometimes. Outside of boss fights It's also harder, ironically.

It's only redeeming quality is a bit of Falcom flavor and quirk. But once the novelty wears off, I feel myself becoming hollow actually playing it. To compare it to Origin/Felghana is a crime. And I say this having played them back to back.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:09 pm 


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Obscura wrote:
Also, there's lots of stuff other than enemies that do "lunge forward" attacks, like enemies that do spinny attacks (especially plants), birds that shoot lasers, a few enemies that do "falling meteor" attacks, etc. Ys SEVEN has more enemy variety than Origin does, which keeps using palette-swapped slimes, teleporting mages, and "jump behind them lol" knights.

Made irrelevant when the only method to deal with nearly all of them is always to either Flash Guard or roll backwards/sideways. There's a lot more depth involved to jumping and double-jumping as a means of dodging attacks when most enemy attacks travel across ground level, and the direction you jump towards matters as much as whether extending your jump with a double jump won't make you fall down at the wrong time or let you stay in the air long enough so you can avoid an attack which you would have normally landed in. Earth Guard/others aren't as surefire because they're bound to a limited resource and aren't as precise in controlling your movement, while jumping remains useful because of the down-stab with stun on top and the general non-flat level design.

Especially made more irrelevant when you only face like one or two enemy (types) at once most of the time. Unless the game is designed around 1v1s, dominant strategies are more easily spammable when you only have to face off against one enemy type at once, or two types which don't differ too strongly in terms of their role and how you're supposed to react to them. In that regard, Oath/Origin were more prone to swarming you with enemies and make ranged nuisance enemies matter more when placed in a group of several enemies. Or flying enemies you can't hit from the ground and have to hit with trickier-to-perform jump attacks (or in Seven's case, just switch to the ranged character to be even able to reasonably damage them lol). Or enemies which can block frontal attacks. Also consider how enemies in Seven in general have longer wind-ups to their attacks whereas a lot more Oath/Origin enemies played quick and dirty.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:30 pm 


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Jumping actually reduces overall depth to avoiding attacks for that exact reason; it's the instant-solution to almost every problem. I won't go so far as to say it was the right call for them to get rid of it in Seven (it had the unfortunate side effect of reducing the possible maze-complexity of dungeons), but I totally understand why they did. Go play 1, 2, and Dawn to better understand this.

As far as mob-combat goes, Oath and Origin have to be differentiated. Origin mob combat is a complete joke, endless copy-pasted enemies that do very little. Oath does better here, but it doesn't do a lot with variety; most any screen has one type of enemy coming at you, or maybe two different types of melee dudes. I can't think of any areas where you have to deal with ranged and melee enemies at the same time, unless you just are running from enemies. And even if you did, non-boss projectiles have so little presence in Oath and Origin, controlling only a one-pixel long line in a game where you can move freely in three dimensions, that they'd be a total non-thing.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:33 pm 


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Obscura wrote:
Jumping actually reduces overall depth to avoiding attacks for that exact reason; it's the instant-solution to almost every problem.


Only against danmaku waves which you were never meant to be sidestepped anyway. Seven also makes this easier because parrying a projectile is innately easier than parrying a melee attack due to its constant velocity and direction. This is why parry and i-frame moves kinda sorta make sense in melee combat focused games but would instantly break any shmup you put them in.

Jumping has far more depth for the very reasons Durandal layed out. In fact, it works incredibly well in the danmaku context because of the constant question of when you should extend your jump or where you should try to land.

Obscura wrote:
As far as mob-combat goes, Oath and Origin have to be differentiated. Origin mob combat is a complete joke, endless copy-pasted enemies that do very little.


Only if you're playing as Toal. Even then, can't speak for nightmare since I did hard with him.

Even playing as an overleveled Toal scooping up zakos with yellow claw, I still had to pay attention more than any mob in Seven. I can't remember a single death to normal enemies in Seven, whereas even the lowest mooks in Origin/Oath have killed me at least a few times. Everything outside of bosses is so easy and pointless on Nightmare that I can only shakingly grasp my head and stammer "why..."

"Why..."

"HOW IS THIS ACCEPTABLE DIFFICULTY BALANCE ON FUCKING NIGHTMARE MODE???"

Obscura wrote:
I can't think of any areas where you have to deal with ranged and melee enemies at the same time, unless you just are running from enemies.


You should stop arguing then because you don't remember the game very well.
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Last edited by Squire Grooktook on Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:38 pm 


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I actually really struggle at parrying projectiles in the modern Ys games. You know when a melee attack is going to go active, but the "where the hell is that thing exactly in space?!?!" effect really comes into play with projectiles.

My last playthrough of Origin was on Nightmare with Yunica, and the mobs were a total non-event. Every character carves through them without having to think about it at all. Compare the bug-swarms in Lava Zone in Oath vs. the bugs in Silent Sands in Origin; the swarms in Oath are huge swarms that hit hard and pose a real threat, the bugs in Silent Sands are a speedbump. Similar enemy, but the encounter philosophy in the two games is drastically different.

EDIT in response to your edits: Air Gallet has a non-resource-limited I-frame dodge, it doesn't break the game at all.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:48 pm 


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Obscura wrote:
I actually really struggle at parrying projectiles in the modern Ys games. You know when a melee attack is going to go active, but the "where the hell is that thing exactly in space?!?!" effect really comes into play with projectiles.


You *don't* know when it's going to be active though. One of the most annoying aspects of modern character action is that they can do whatever they want with big giant monster swing animations and the player has no idea when the giant over the top wind up animation is going to be delayed too. Can you tell when the octopus mook is going to finally bring its tentacle down on you in Bayonetta 2 after flailing it around for 2 whole seconds? Yes? You're lying.

Projectiles only have issues because of depth perception, another reason why the newer games did poorly to remove the ideal isometric perspective. Even then, parrying a projectile is still way easier than parrying a giant swing with an ambiguous timing if you haven't memorized it yet.

Obscura wrote:
My last playthrough of Origin was on Nightmare with Yunica, and the mobs were a total non-event. Every character carves through them without having to think about it at all. Compare the bug-swarms in Lava Zone in Oath vs. the bugs in Silent Sands in Origin; the swarms in Oath are huge swarms that hit hard and pose a real threat, the bugs in Silent Sands are a speedbump. Similar enemy, but the encounter philosophy in the two games is drastically different.


Well, playing all 3 games back to back, I'll say this:

Felghana is harder than Origin, though sometimes not in the right ways.

But Origin still made me move around just as much, and sometimes the mobs did kill me.

Seven did neither and nothing outside of bosses killed me. I handled all mobs the same throughout the entire game and I found near end-game enemies in Seven less challenging than mines or tower base enemies in Felghana/Origin.

...on fucking Nightmare mode, whereas I played the other two on hard.

It's dumb.

Hell, Oath/Origin had more variety in simply moving around in its environments than Seven did in its entirety, combat included.

Obscura wrote:
EDIT in response to your edits: Air Gallet has a non-resource-limited I-frame dodge, it doesn't break the game at all.


That's because:

-It's *just* i-frames, and barely any at that, it doesn't trigger a parry state.*
-It requires wriggling around, and isn't instant access. Much like how Earth Magic takes a second to charge in Origin/Oath.
-Other reasons context etc.

*That is, a state in which you are given bonus invulnerability for having successfully parried, and can then instantly perform another parry or do whatever you want.

Valkyrius is the closest thing I can think of that works, but it's not actually invulnerable so much as it is a teleport that can land you (completely vulnerable) on another bullet. Kind of like how jumping is never as braindead as parrying because even if you jump "correctly" you don't get a free window of invulnerability wherein you can do no wrong and have every advantage layed out on a silver platter. You can still land on something else if you're not watching.

If you could press a button 5-frames before a bullet would collide with you to get a parry/invulnerability state, and then chain it to the next bullet, then even shit like Hibachi washing machine would be incredibly easy. Or at least, the optimal strategy would be the drastically easier one of timing your button presses instead of reading every bullet (vanilla reaction vs choice reaction).

In comparison, i-frames on a cooldown could work just fine (even ones more powerful than Air-Gallets), and have. But that's not a parry.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:15 pm 


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Psyvariar lets you chain invulnerability periods. It works just fine. So does Radirgy.

You know when a melee attack is going to be active if you've seen it once before, yes. It's not going to change on the second time. We're talking Falcom here, they're always going to have the same big, dumb, exaggerated animation, it's not a dev house with a real art budget like Capcom or something.

Nothing outside of bosses kills me in Oath, either, aside from if I really screw up the Quicksand + Skeletons room in Silent Sands or if I get confused from the enemies in the final area and get impatient and try to rush forward anyway instead of doing the smart thing and waiting for it to wear off. In both of those games, the mobs are just there to keep the action moving forward while you explore the maze; Ys Seven's possibilities for optimizing enemy-kill order based on meter status, and its battery/release shenanigans, keep me a lot more active than Origin does, even if in practice it just means I blast over the speedbumps five seconds faster.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:31 pm 


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Obscura wrote:
Psyvariar lets you chain invulnerability periods. It works just fine. So does Radirgy.


Okay, I'm editing this because I don't want to be an asshole. Or at least, I want to be less of an asshole. Sorry for the original response~

There is...a massive difference between a parry button you can mash and succeed based on timing (while standing in place), and Psyvariar's system which encourages you to move around and target specif clusters of bullets adaptively in order to keep it going.

Psyvariar works because it essentially reverses the usual shmup goal: instead of aiming away from bullets, you're aiming towards them. Instead of dodging bullets, you're dodging empty spaces. But you're still moving. You still have to keep pulling unique movements and read bullet trajectories to keep that phase going. You're not simply basking in the afterglow of a correctly answered and infinitely repeatable timing minigame.

It's really bizarre to compare it to a parrystate as it works in most character action. Completely different on virtually every level.

Obscura wrote:
Nothing outside of bosses kills me in Oath


I spent hours dying to monster gauntlets in Oath. Perhaps just as much as bosses. Illburn ruins, the deep mines, Valstein Castle, the island...all took numerous attempts to gauntlet through while killing everything in one perfect run.

Obscura wrote:
Ys Seven's possibilities for optimizing enemy-kill order based on meter status, and its battery/release shenanigans, keep me a lot more active than Origin does, even if in practice it just means I blast over the speedbumps five seconds faster.


More like 1 second faster for marginal effort. Maybe not even that since it's debatable how much you can really do for most of the game. I gave the battery playstyle a go, but playing around with it and trying other things, it only made a minor difference and even then only on bosses. Even if it didn't work, switching between characters with identical attacks and managing numbers to kill a mook who doesn't fight back anyway a few frames faster in a repetitive series of corridors isn't my idea of fun.

I stand by my point that comparing Seven positively to Oath/Origin in any way is a crime.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:45 pm 


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Quote:
I spent hours dying to monster gauntlets in Oath. Perhaps just as much as bosses. Illburn ruins, the deep mines, Valstein Castle, the island...all took numerous attempts to gauntlet through while killing everything in one perfect run.

This should have read Origin not Oath, sorry. I wouldn't put Genos Island or the Deep Mines as areas that have particularly threatening mobs (Lava Zone is more dangerous then either), but otherwise, yes, mobs in that game aren't just speedbumps. It's one of the very few areas that game is better than the three that followed it.

Quote:
More like 1 second faster for marginal effort. Maybe not even that since it's debatable how much you can really do for most of the game. I gave the battery playstyle a go, but playing around with it and trying other things, it only made a minor difference and even then only on bosses. Even if it didn't work, switching between characters with identical attacks and managing numbers to kill a mook who doesn't fight back anyway a few frames faster in a repetitive series of corridors isn't my idea of fun.

I stand by my point that comparing Seven positively to Oath/Origin in any way is a crime.

No way, batterying-correctly speeds up normal combat a ton, especially before you get Aisha's broken skill that's basically a multi-hitting version of her regular attack (I'll readily admit that skill is a problem, and probably shouldn't have been in the game). When grinding the three screens over and over at the end for materials, batterying properly cuts the time to clear a screen down by a ton (IME, it's almost twice as fast if you're "doin it rite"), and that's even after Aisha has gone full-broken. Cruxie's skills can be utterly brutal, or you can use Aisha's broken skill to have Cruxie do her super, which is also utterly brutal.

There's a reason why they pair Aisha with Cruxie and Elk with Mishera on the final boss... do this right, or your damage output is just total trash.

90% of the action across the entire Ys series is fighting mooks in mazes of nearly identical corridors, and the only games in the series where those mooks pose any real threat are 1, Oath, and 8. If "find your way through a big maze while trying to find every little corner of it" doesn't appeal to you on its own, you're in the wrong series. This is part of why Oath is inferior to Origin and Seven, keeping the sidescroller heritage for most of the game simplified the mazes too much.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:53 pm 


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Obscura wrote:
No way, batterying-correctly speeds up normal combat a ton, especially before you get Aisha's broken skill that's basically a multi-hitting version of her regular attack (I'll readily admit that skill is a problem, and probably shouldn't have been in the game). When grinding the three screens over and over at the end for materials, batterying properly cuts the time to clear a screen down by a ton (IME, it's almost twice as fast if you're "doin it rite"), and that's even after Aisha has gone full-broken. Cruxie's skills can be utterly brutal, or you can use Aisha's broken skill to have Cruxie do her super, which is also utterly brutal..


I did.

It's a marginal damage boost, but not nearly as much as you seem to recall.

And regardless, it's not that fun or thoughtful to do either. If anything it makes the action feel even more limited and repetitive.

Obscura wrote:
90% of the action across the entire Ys series is fighting mooks in mazes of nearly identical corridors, and the only games in the series where those mooks pose any real threat are 1, Oath, and 8. If "find your way through a big maze while trying to find every little corner of it" doesn't appeal to you on its own, you're in the wrong series. This is part of why Oath is inferior to Origin and Seven, keeping the sidescroller heritage for most of the game simplified the mazes too much.


I don't give a shit about that shit, but Oath/Origin are my top 10 action games because of the utterly manic mix of hack and slash, platforming, danmaku, and adventure, boiled up into one fast paced and manically varied package. The emphasis on frantically dashing all over the place (and with manual movement, not an i-frame equipped roll/step) while all that shit is flying around is why the Oath/Origin games are stellar.

Falcom struck gold with that formula. It's a shame modern character action tropes and design philosophies have more or less killed it. I doubt we'll see a return to that playstyle outside of fangames.
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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:06 pm 


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As pure action games, I don't see the Ys games as being all that special outside of the boss fights TBH. It needs the comfort food of the dungeon exploration to complete the contract.

In terms of raw "Adol vs. mobs, fight and dodge with no I-frames", Ys 1 and Dawn both absolutely smoke Oath and Origin (Dawn would probably be my favorite in the series were it not for that poorly conceived "back to Ys 1!" segment that, according to the credits room, was thrown together by the intern). So does Zelda 1, LttP, and Link's Awakening. So does Illusion of Gaia. So does Alundra. It's not really that hard to do, neither game has particularly interesting fights with mobs, and Origin is particularly feeble in that regard. They only really shine as action games in the boss fights, which are a small part of the total game.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:12 pm 


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Obscura wrote:
As pure action games, I don't see the Ys games as being all that special outside of the boss fights TBH.


Then alas

thou art blind

Obscura wrote:
So does Zelda 1, LttP, and Link's Awakening.


Blinder than Blind the Thief in LttP ^_~

But nah, Felghana's chainsawing basic combo alone is more fun than anything in those games (the snappy handling being one of the few positive things that Seven retained, though ultimately rendered bland without its surrounding context). Let alone the trinity of magic, the platforming (don't you DARE say Alundra had platforming because as much as I love that game we all know the platforming was shit, Felghana/Origin it's at least functional enough to add to the sense of manic variety. Valstein Castle blasts away anything in those games movement wise with ease), the faster speed, the danmaku elements, the greater challenge...

...but I think we're done here since I can't do much more to indict that statement than frame it, put it on a mantle, and let it stand for itself~

...

SERIOUSLY LTTP ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

(I'm not mad)
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RegalSin wrote:
Japan an almost perfect society always threatened by outsiders....................

Instead I am stuck in the America's where women rule with an iron crotch, and a man could get arrested for sitting behind a computer too long.

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Last edited by Squire Grooktook on Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 11:35 pm 


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If you're going to slag off of Zelda 1 and 3 as top-down action games, you're insane.

That Blind fight that you mention is incredible, for instance. Zelda 1 gives you multiple such fights. There's loads of intense non-boss action setups all over those games, whether it's the Blue Wizzrobe rooms in Zelda 1's final level or the Darknut rooms in its fifth and eighth or even the Goriya rooms in its first two (even in its first level, Zelda 1 is tossing out mook fights more frantic than Ys Origin or Oath dare to, and putting more projectiles out there too, and those projectiles are moving in more complex ways even!) and the Lynels or Ghinis in the overworld, and the evade-and-counter antics of Zelda 3's basic skeletons and the positional games of the fast-homing Helmasaurs (which actually work here unlike in Ys Origin since you can't just jump over them to solve the problem). Zelda 4 is a bit weaker here, but it's got some amazing boss fights itself, in particular Shadow Gannon, Hothead, and Evil Eagle.

You keep saying "Danmaku elements", but aside from the plants in Valestein, I'm struggling to think of any mooks in Oath that shoot more than one aimed bullet. Not that it would matter, loljump.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 12:10 am 


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Obscura wrote:
Quote:
More like 1 second faster for marginal effort. Maybe not even that since it's debatable how much you can really do for most of the game. I gave the battery playstyle a go, but playing around with it and trying other things, it only made a minor difference and even then only on bosses. Even if it didn't work, switching between characters with identical attacks and managing numbers to kill a mook who doesn't fight back anyway a few frames faster in a repetitive series of corridors isn't my idea of fun.

I stand by my point that comparing Seven positively to Oath/Origin in any way is a crime.

No way, batterying-correctly speeds up normal combat a ton, especially before you get Aisha's broken skill that's basically a multi-hitting version of her regular attack (I'll readily admit that skill is a problem, and probably shouldn't have been in the game). When grinding the three screens over and over at the end for materials, batterying properly cuts the time to clear a screen down by a ton (IME, it's almost twice as fast if you're "doin it rite"), and that's even after Aisha has gone full-broken. Cruxie's skills can be utterly brutal, or you can use Aisha's broken skill to have Cruxie do her super, which is also utterly brutal.

There's a reason why they pair Aisha with Cruxie and Elk with Mishera on the final boss... do this right, or your damage output is just total trash.

spamming my most powerful skills and flash guarding everything worked just fine for me on Nightmare

I mean, stuff like that you only discover by accident or thorough experimentation to make some sense out of the system when the game refuses to tell you the exact damage values on all your skills or any of their stats. The roles of each party members in Seven as governed by their skills aren't made naturally clear at all considering there is a ridiculous amount of overlap in skills between party members where several members already can do X or Y thing. I was practically facerolling towards the end of the game and things worked out just fine, at no point was I pushed to be any more effective in my SP management or skill usage when most regular enemies die quickly enough to begin with, nor was I ever presented with a standard of sorts which showed me that I'm able to kill enemies even faster. I'd sure have taken that offer so I could spend less time completing Seven.

There's probably some inherent snappy satisfaction in this system, but Oath/Origin scraped by just fine by keeping your moveset unbloated and the damage potential for each move more or less clear (and properly situational) and giving you an EXP multiplier which raises on each hit as an incentive to frantically find something to eviscerate in order to keep up your murder spree. If the only raison d'gameplay is to optimize your NUMBERS, then I don't know why you'd pick Ys over something like Diablo.

Quote:
90% of the action across the entire Ys series is fighting mooks in mazes of nearly identical corridors, and the only games in the series where those mooks pose any real threat are 1, Oath, and 8. If "find your way through a big maze while trying to find every little corner of it" doesn't appeal to you on its own, you're in the wrong series. This is part of why Oath is inferior to Origin and Seven, keeping the sidescroller heritage for most of the game simplified the mazes too much.

I honestly don't know how you can say this when Ys Seven gives you a full map on each new room you encounter which largely eliminates any sense of exploration, largely nullifies long-term decision making involving making a trade-off between retreating to a savepoint or pushing on long enough so you can level up and get a free HP refill and find the next save statue, by giving you what amounts to seven health bars thanks to your party members, and the near-complete decoupling of platforming and environmental hazards from dungeon combat to mix things up a little. And the presence of health items.

Obscura wrote:
In terms of raw "Adol vs. mobs, fight and dodge with no I-frames", Ys 1 and Dawn both absolutely smoke Oath and Origin (Dawn would probably be my favorite in the series were it not for that poorly conceived "back to Ys 1!" segment that, according to the credits room, was thrown together by the intern).

Um. Er.
From a perspective of skeezing on the line between getting hit and slapping bitches, I could kind of see that. With kaleidoscope glasses on.

Your standards for videogames are completely alien to me.
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chum wrote:
the thing is that we actually go way back and have known each other on multiple websites, first clashing in a Naruto forum.

Liar. I've known you only from latexmachomen.com and pantysniffers.org forums.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 11:24 am 


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What's "character action"?


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2018 12:47 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
What's "character action"?

EDIT: It's more of an interface than an abstract class, so to speak.

Basically beat 'em ups/hack 'n slashes which focus more on offense than defense, where a good defense is a good offense, rather than relying on positioning or crowd control moves as much.
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Xyga wrote:
chum wrote:
the thing is that we actually go way back and have known each other on multiple websites, first clashing in a Naruto forum.

Liar. I've known you only from latexmachomen.com and pantysniffers.org forums.


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 Post subject: Re: FALCOM Thread
PostPosted: Wed Dec 19, 2018 11:58 am 


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Ys 9 announced.
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