annoyances · games · PSP

Finished Unchained Blades last night (Spoilers)

I am totally not surprised that there was no explanation for the other characters joining Fang at the end. I also see no point to a sequel (story-wise) and …

< SPOILERS > ~ Highlight to read ~
… Why would Clunea continue granting wishes if she knew that the greed thing can affect her? Or did destroying her corrupt form magically give her immunity to it forever? I’m specifically referring to the post-final battle part.
< /SPOILERS >

Anyway, here’s a summary of my thoughts about the game:

The Good Stuff

  • Dungeon exploring was fun!
  • Dungeon designs were decent.
  • Colourful artwork. The mishmash of designs didn’t bother me very much. :3

I do have a silly complaint about character design though! Lucius is too skinny and has a seemingly giant head. ^^; It … really bothered me. I wish he’d leave the hood and cloak on more often. XD

And now, the whole list of things that didn’t jive with me~

The Bad Stuff

  • Stupid reply options from Masters that make no sense in relation to a question asked by a Follower.
  • Followers pestering Masters about things. It seems to be frequent if they level up quickly — that is, bringing followers into an area with enemies that are a few levels higher than they are.
  • Super puny inventory. I can only see this working well if you keep running back to town to sell or synthesize things. Of course, in many cases, it’s just not worth the effort.
  • The Unchain system. Basically, you have to wear down an enemy’s hitpoints and then HOPE you get the option to Unchain them because it won’t always appear. On top of this, if your attack is synced with a follower due to elemental affinity, there’s a horrible chance that the follower can KILL the enemy before you even get the chance to Unchain. (I can’t remember clearly but I think this even happens if you use regular attacks?)
  • Materials/resource gathering. I might be one of the few people in the world that hates seeing this in games and the hate is compounded by the fact that the tools are bloody expensive to purchase early in the game and the random nature of what you can obtain at each harvesting/timber/mining point …. Ugh. Thankfully, all quests are optional and you don’t HAVE to do synthesis. However, I’m pretty sure a lot of the best equipment and such are only available through synthesis.
  • Useless Encyclopedia that has no information about an enemy’s anima or where you can find the enemy.
  • The remaining crest keys which can only be obtained by clearing Infinite Ark multiple times. I’ve yet to confirm this but going by the tutorial about the Ark, this is the impression I get from it. I mean, yeah, I like exploring dungeons but going through 101 floors of randomly generated floor designs more than once isn’t my idea of FUN. Granted, you can cut down the journey by taking the red teleports which lets you skip 10 floors. Still, this depends on whether or not the game creates the teleport for you and if you can find it when it does.
  • Moving around on the Skill Map. Who the hell was the fucktard that decided that NOT locking the cursor to the nodes was a good idea? I can’t remember if moving around on the FFX Sphere Grid was this moronic. The D-pad could have easily been used to navigate the nodes and the designers could have simply given us the option to lock or unlock the cursor in case we wanted to move to another part of the map instead of continuing in the area we were working on.
  • The translation of the dialogue between the Reaper Clan characters is strange and doesn’t work well in English. :/ For example, the whole Big brother” thing at the end. Obviously, it’s much more endearing in Japanese which would convey the closeness between the characters a lot better.
  • Why does the storage option become available midway through the game? And, oh yeah, there IS a mandatory quest. In order to even unlock the storage option, you have to complete a quest. Thankfully, getting the materials wasn’t too difficult.
  • Tutorial topics have “automated pages”. This means that you have to review an entire tutorial topic just to read up on a single thing you’re looking for.

There’s probably some more stuff. I might add them if I think of them.

At any rate, I’m going through the Infinite Ark right now. I’m just doing one round. ¬†Just because.

Edit:

Finished it and ….

Infinite Ark results (first and only time)
Infinite Ark results (first and only time). Yes, this was done with cheats on.

…. Welp, looks like you DO get one key per visit. Totally not going for the remaining 5. I’m done with this game.

Also, going through the Ark just to get the Winged Crest Key which lead me to a damned Seal Bangle is really not worth the trek.

annoyances · games · PSP

I thought I was finished Unchained Blades and then …

… BAM! Another chapter gets thrown at me. So yeah, I’m going through yet ANOTHER Titan. Sigh. I will most likely ignore the post-game stuff though. Heh.

Will there ever be a post about the game where I won’t complain about it? Most likely not. However, I do talk a little about the characters and … stuff! No spoilers.

So much of the game still annoys me even though I’m not playing it “properly”. XD The 50 items inventory limit is way too restrictive. I mean, I don’t even do any harvesting or mining and I STILL manage to max it out while simply travelling through a dungeon and fighting. How the hell does THAT happen? I would believe this is something that will be changed in the sequel. At least, it better be. Sometimes, I wonder what the developers are thinking when they design their games. Didn’t they feel the issue when THEY played through it? Maybe it was too late to fix it by then? But then, I don’t think it’ll be a million lines of code just to make it so that you can fit a few more items into it.

Buuuuuuuut, I suppose the issue then is to figure out what the acceptable limit is. Or perhaps there’s not even a satisfactory number? Yet if they could have done some sort of average — like say, every type of monster in the dungeon will drop 1 unique item and there are 10 kinds of monsters that you can encounter. That’s 10 right there. And then all the harvesting/timber/mining points can probably give you 3 unique items on average. (I know the permanent points can give you more.) … And then, the Judgement Battles dump a crap ton of items on you too.

Well now, through this estimate alone, the inventory limit is obviously not enough. XD

Yeah yeah, I know the idea is to use the items for synthesis but when you’re very deep into a dungeon, you REALLY don’t want to zip back out to the village to do that or to place things in storage. This is especially true for a few of the Titans where getting back to higher floors is actually a bit of a walk.

Well, the storage seems to be limitless in terms of the number of unique items you can shove into it. The 99 quantity per item still applies though.

I’m kind of curious what the inventory cheats will do. I never bothered to use one since I honestly don’t even care about materials or healing items right now as my nigh invincible party has no need of them.

Indeed, I’ve pretty much just made the game into dungeon exploration and monster capturing at will. XD I still left the challenge of failing Unchains in though even though I can turn on the option for 100% successful unchains whenever I want. Actually, I’ve never done it so I don’t even know if that cheat works. ^^

Speaking about monsters, that in-game encyclopedia is so damn USELESS. All it shows is a picture of the monster and a description. I’m pretty sure I’ve hit every button possible to see if I could bring up information about its habitat and anima but there’s NOTHING about it. I mean, sometimes, you can go a long while without encountering a monster that has an anima you need and if you want to go back to a dungeon to get one … dumb old me that has a crappy memory would like to know which Titan I should head to.

However, this was when anima actually mattered. ūüėõ I believe I played up to chapter 5 with actual skill usage and follower arrangements that allowed me to access those skills. But after a while, I just said, “Fuck this.”, and turned on max stats as well as getting myself enough SP so I can simply obtain all 3 Burst types for the 4 main party members. Oh yeah, I got infinite HP, MP, and Burst going on as well.

I’m pretty much sticking to Fang, Tiana, Reaper Clan girl, and Lapis. Mari had way too many buffs and debuffs for my liking, Fox girl had a decent set of skills and dealt decent damage but I hate her character (why can’t Tiana bitch slap her instead of simply yelling at her? I’m thinking that physical abuse might actually work as a reminder that she’s not supposed to be so trigger-happy with buttons and switches), Lucius desperately needed group attacks, and Hector … I like Hector but I can only have 4 characters in the active roster. ūüė¶


Oh yeah, was it just me or was there some sort of continuity lapse in the chapter, The Last Wish? It’s like one character had the orb thing and then SUDDENLY, out of the blue, someone ELSE got it. I could swear I was reading all the narrative text and there was no indication that the orb dropped onto the floor or anything. It was so weird. :/

Also, Reaper Clan girl’s relationship with her lord/brother is …. um … let’s just say it’s not heartwarming. In fact, it gave me the impression that it’s a rather twisted relationship. But I suppose if you take into account the many generations, it’s not all that weird.

Clunea’s really weird too. I suppose she just lovesssssssssssss people asking her for help. (Re: wishes.) She has an ego thing as well.

Speaking about ego, I’m glad Fang stopped going on about the whole “I’M THE STRONGEST DRAGON IN THE WORLD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” bit past chapter 4 or 5. I mean, he still says it but not with the frequency that he did early in the game. Goddamn, that was annoying beyond belief.

Oh, the end of the chapter 6/beginning of chapter 7 is kind of strange. I don’t see the motivation of the OTHER characters for wanting to follow Fang. I mean, I seriously don’t see any other justification from them other than, “We’re gonna stick with you till the end!” I take it they’re all going to so some stupid speech before the final battle so maybe then, I’ll get their personal reasons.

Since I’m pretty close to the end of the game now, I can say that I’m disappointed that there wasn’t much in way of character development. I mean, you’re only given so many chances at the camp sites to get a bit more detail about a single character (and if you want to learn more, you have to replay the game again or if you magically had a save before then, you could just reload that a couple of times to see all the answers) but even that’s not enough.

What’s really silly is that you’re not given any back story of the Four Dragon Kings. You just shove them into your followers slots and that’s it. They’re even goofy enough to pester you like other followers after battles and before heading into town. 9__9 I was hoping for some interaction between them especially if you already had one with you when you encountered another one. However, it seems like their main purpose is the game is to be powerful monsters to recruit.

I suppose I’ll end the rant here cuz this post went much longer than I anticipated. I still have to do a post-game rant too after all. XD

Edit: Clunea sure likes doors.

annoyances · games · PSP

Collection of Unchained Blades tweets from today so far

I figure I should move them here instead of bombarding my friends with all the bitching I’ve been doing about the game. XD

  • Wow. The game pretty much FORCES you to get materials for weapon upgrades in Chapter 2. #UnchainedBlades
  • This, along with starting at level 1 with a new party, sucks hardcore. I hope the sequel isn’t this idiotic. #UnchainedBlades
  • I’ll consider the $30 I spent on this as a donation to XSEED for other games. Never again will I play a dungeon crawler. #UnchainedBlades
  • At least not one like this. Mandatory material gathering can go to hell. Fuck developers for including those. #UnchainedBlades
  • Wait. I can get unlock dagger use for Tiana. Ahaha. ATK +1 with a Scramsax. Goddamn. Material gathering I go then. #UnchainedBlades
  • FYI, she was doing 1 HP of damage to the wimpiest monsters in the first dungeon with her default weapon. Stronger one N/A. #UnchainedBlades

I kind of forgot to explore the Skill Map before heading exploring the Temple of Trials and Titan Darius. ^^;  Turns out that you CAN buy another weapon type for Tiana pretty early so unlike her rapiers which require materials, the Scramsax (a dagger) can be bought. Unfortunately, it adds little to her attack. 9__9

I have no idea if increasing proficiency in forging new weapons will unlock more at the shop for purchase or simply advancing the story will do. Either way, I’m gonna have to get more materials if I want Tiana to be useful. ¬†Well, her and that fox girl.

Edit #1: Actually, if the sequel improves on a lot of crap like less grinding to get money in the beginning among other things, I may consider trying it as well.

Edit #2:  Ooh! Looks like weapon unlocks at the store are story driven! Mwahaha.

Edit #3: Really hope the sequel improves or even removes the whole monster collecting bit. But then, I think it’s a major gameplay gimmick. Sigh. If only Judgement Battles didn’t exist …

Edit #4: It’s really annoying when you’re trying to wear down an enemy to Unchain them only to have your stupid followers land attacks or a party member crit hit. >_>

annoyances · games · PSP

Been playing Unchained Blades

I purchased it off the PS Store on day one since it’s a game I’ve been interested in for the past while.

However, I do believe I should have a) done more research of it and b) watched WALKTHROUGH videos of the Japanese version (if they exist. Never bothered looking for them.) beforehand because I didn’t know how punishing it would be.

I’ve been checking out opinions around the Net and the general consensus seems that it’s on par with other dungeon crawlers and that the game isn’t that difficult. It’s difficult to me because I don’t have much experience with dungeon crawlers so I’m not entirely sure how my gameplay strategy should be. (The last one that I stuck with was Eye of the Beholder (the first one) on the PC. I only managed to get to the 5th floor though before losing patience. XD I did enjoy hurling food rations as projectiles at monsters though.)

Anyway, the reason I label Unchained Blades as punishing (so far — based on the Prologue and Chapter 1) is that the difficulty spikes per floor level are insane and also, you have NO WAY of replenishing MP for your skills without resorting to a run back to the inn in the nearest village. Items and equipment are bloody expensive as well although you can make money from selling off materials or products created through fusing materials harvested or mined at various locations around dungeons. The problem is that the tools for getting said materials can be expensive too. 9___9

You’re pretty much doomed to grind and grind and grind until you have enough money to get better weapons & armor and enough levels to have beefy characters to survive the higher floors in dungeons.

On top of this, you have to do some monster hunting and capturing — and I emphasize HAVE TO as certain skills are only available to you if you have certain elements at your disposal. You see, each monster has some sort of elemental affinity known as Anima. Some of them have more than one too which is all fine and dandy until you realize that you have to level up your character’s charisma stat to gain enough capacity points so you can actually attach the needed monster to the character.

Capturing monsters, known as Unchaining, can be a chore since you have to whittle their HP (hitpoints) down below the halfway mark and it seems to be random meaning that you won’t be able to unchain every single creature you come across right off the bat. However, all creatures are DIFFERENT in terms of the HP amount that will trigger the Unchain option. Sometimes, you can get them once the HP reach 50% while others can be as low as 10% (like the HP bar is nearly empty). Dragging on battles is pretty much the only way to get an Unchain at times as you have to carefully chip away at an enemy’s health to make sure you don’t outright kill it.

To wrap this up, here’s someone that wrote a post that pretty much sums up my feelings about the game so far:

http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showpost.php?p=36498394&postcount=224

games · iOS

Inotia 4: Assassin of Berkel

I’ve been putting some quality time into this game. ¬†My character’s currently at level 31 and just rescued the Elder of the Steel Orcs. ¬†The boss at this part had me quite stumped since he would keep putting my characters to sleep and kill all of them that way. >_< ¬†I wish the Inotia series would have some items that can restore people from various status effects — that, and the bloody ability to teleport to towns and such. ¬†I suppose walking everywhere is pretty much a staple of Inotia so Com2uS will never change it. Bastards.

Anyway, a tip for fighting Zahad Kuruhatt: switch to Olaf and spam Rush of Anger as much as you can.  Heck, just spam any skills that can stun or incapacitate the boss in some way.

Edit: I suppose if you have a Warrior, you won’t need to switch to Olaf. ^^ Kiyan is a Black Knight in my game and my party at the time only consisted of a Priest and Warlock or Priest and Archer. I can’t remember.

games · iOS

Fantasica

Fantasica iTunes product page
Fantasica iTunes page

Read about this social game while going through some older posts at Andriasang.com today. ¬†It’s described as a simulation roleplaying game but in reality, it’s a peculiar mixture of tower defense and super simple one-touch automated RPG.

The game starts off with a brief tutorial that allows you to select a single random unit which comes in the form of a card. ¬†I think you can then draw a few more units. (I can’t remember clearly. ^^;;) ¬†And finally, it tells you to select a unit to be a leader character. ¬†Er, oh yeah, there are different types of characters like fighters, archers, and magic users. ¬†Not all units are human either since I’ve drawn monsters too. ^^

A Fantasica unit card
Ramza!?

The tutorial then continues with the tower defense gameplay mode by teaching you the basics of selecting a unit and placing them in a highlighted area.  Each unit has a cost and every stage gives you a fixed amount of unit points to start off with.  The points regenerate as you play the stage.  Also, you can only place a certain number of units on the gameplay field.  If you have any leftover space (and some available points, I think), you can select characters from other players to assist you in your battle.

The other gameplay mode has stages where your leader character runs northward along a very long dirt path. ¬†It seems the point of it is to collect certain unit cards. ¬†You can also level up your leader this way though. ¬†Anyway, along the path, he or she will encounter monsters or chests where you can get new unit cards. ¬†It seems that random characters from other players will pop up too? I’m not sure about this though.

Of course, there are many other things to do in the game such as trading cards with other players, fusing cards to strengthen characters, buying and selling cards + items, sending friend requests, and more.

One big gimmick about Fantasica is that both gameplay modes as well as obtaining new cards from the Gacha menu require some sort of points which limit how much you can do during a single gaming session. ¬†I believe the gameplay ones replenish after a while but getting new cards require either points obtained in the TD or RPG modes or by purchasing them with real money. :/ ¬†There seems to be like 3 sets of points too. X___x ¬†In a way, it’s¬†reminiscent of the Stamina & Friendship Points systems from¬†Puzzle & Dragons.

I should note that this game requires one to register with the Japanese Mobage social community. ¬†The registration isn’t difficult but they require personal information like your gender, birth date and¬†blood type (I wonder if all Japanese social networks ask for this. 9__9). ¬†Oh, and even if you don’t live in Japan, you’ll be forced to select a prefecture before you can finalize the registration process. ¬†If you’re hyper sensitive about allowing the public to know about these things, you’d best not even bother with the game. ¬†Or, you can quickly load up your Mobage home page after you finish registering so you can hide the info through the privacy settings.

Fantasica is available globally (I believe) but the US link is:¬†http://itunes.apple.com/app/id506604550?mt=8¬†The game is also available on Android but since I couldn’t install it on my tablet, I have no idea if it’s available for phones outside of Japan:¬†https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=jp.mbga.g12007722.mktapp

The official site can be seen here. ¬†It’s Japanese only.

Oh, despite the fact that the product page on iTunes says the in-game languages are English and Japanese, 99% of the game is in Japanese. ūüėõ ¬†The English bits only come in the form of unit names and stuff.

Android · annoyances · games

Forgotten Tales: Tips and Rage

Edit on August 30th, 2012: This post was done way back in April when the game was still wholly incomplete and new. It had an immense amount of balancing issues and required insane amounts of grinding for levelling and money. As subsequent updates pretty much didn’t address a lot of the issues I’ve pointed out, I’ve since uninstalled the game. I have no idea how things improved or degraded with the recent updates nor do I care since I’ve given up on Forgotten Tales.

I recommend people to read the comments that other players left for more up-to-date guidance.  The developer has also made a forum so you can check there for hints and information on bugs and such: http://forgotten-tales.boardonly.com/

——–

While on my quest to find fun and engaging Android games to play, I came across Forgotten Tales¬†which seemed decent from screenshots and with a near 5-star rating from 80+ users, I figure it was worth a shot. ¬†But after some quality time with it,¬†I’m finding it difficult to understand how in all hell people could give the game anything beyond 2 or 3 stars. ¬†I take it they’re all just masochists with really low expectations. ¬†Here’s my experience so far:

WALKTHROUGH OF THE VERY BEGINNING + TIPS

It’s not difficult to figure out the controls although I can’t fathom why anyone would want to play the game on the default speed. I always have it at double speed because everything moves so dreadfully slow to me. (I’m using a Galaxy Tab 10.1.) ¬†At first, the game really did seem decent. ¬†I tried out the little dungeon that was southeast of the Forester and took out some skeletons. ¬†I freaked out a little that they could move so much faster than my character but after 2 or 3 battles, I managed to jet and get out of there alive. ¬†Your character regenerates health automatically so I had him stand around for a bit. ¬†Once the health bar was back in the green, I travelled southwest to Kedington Village.

An odd thing about the NPCs (non-player characters) in this game is that, although you get the little speech balloon icon if you move your cursor over them, they have NOTHING to say! Even more strange is the fact that these NPCs can disappear from the area all together if you return at a later time. Anyway, the only ones that will even acknowledge your existence are the ones that have a little question mark icon next to them.

The first character I spoke to was a man standing around in the southwest part of the village. ¬†He gives you the quest to deliver a message to his brother, a gravedigger, in the southern village/town of Ashdown. ¬†Shouldn’t be too difficult, right? ¬†RIGHT??? (Oh yeah, at some point, you can talk to the woman (possibly a hooker?) in Kedington. ¬†After you do your thing with her, you get 25 XP or something.)

Unfortunately, unless you a) did some grinding with the skeletons in the aforementioned dungeon to get enough spoils and money to afford armor and a better weapon, and b) you save like crazy, there’s a very good chance that you will DIE on the way there. ¬†For one thing, the highway bandit (the guy with a green cape) can overpower you easily if you didn’t beef up beforehand. ¬†You may also run into the ever-so-terrible-predicament of being attacked by a giant mob of spiders, wolves, and more highway bandits all at the same time. Although this is not a common occurrence, spiders DO frequently come after you if you’re within the vicinity of the signpost north of the guardhouse near Ashdown.

Forgotten Tales
You don’t want to get into this situation when you’re level 1, travelling alone, and armed only with a wimpy sword.

Oh yeah, there’s a party member with my character in that screenshot. (The member = the other guy with a giant grey oval under him.) I’ll get to this in the next paragraph. XD

In Ashdown, I ran into some random guy that wanted to join forces with me to take out some mean orcs that took over the mines in the east. Cool. A party member! Maybe I won’t have to worry so much about dying all the time now. ¬†Afterwards, I chucked the letter at the gravedigger and it was off to the mines for orc hunting.

Alas, after about a minute of slashing, the one orc I encountered at the mines still wasn’t dead. Instead, my character was the only one taking damage. That’s when I decided to simply reload the bloody game.

So now, all I’m doing is running around and grinding because it takes 300 XP to get to level 3. I only mention the experience because enemies that I can actually kill only give around 2 XP. ¬†All I can hope for is that they drop gold or things I can sell. ¬†I’m not sure why wolves keep dropping their “fungs” because all they do is take up space in inventory as you can’t sell them.

Forgotten Tales: Wolf Fungs
I think you mean fangs. And are these needed for some eventual quest because I can’t sell them or use them in any way.

THE RAGE

Forgotten Tales is a definite work in progress. At the moment, it has extreme balancing issues and a terrible lack of direction for players. I’m all for open world games and exploration but I also like to be able to SURVIVE in them. ¬†It’s actually kind of puzzling why it was released to the public in its current state. It would make a bit more sense if it had the word “BETA” slapped onto the end.

Back to the topic of survival, see the red-headed asshole in the screen below?¬†You try and take him down at level 2 with default equipment, or hell, even the first armor “set” and a Sabre AND with your faithful companion from Ashdown by your side. Good fucking luck.

Forgotten Tales: Bloody Bandit Guy
This enemy should NOT be so close to the second village.

I’ve played my fair share of Western, Japanese, and Korean RPGs — both single player and massively multiplayer online — and generally, there’s something known as game progression. ¬†Typically, you can’t access areas with enemies that you can’t handle due to level, capabilities, etc. until you fulfil certain requirements like advancing the plot. ¬†I’m not entirely sure there really IS a story in Forgotten Tales but regardless, it ignores any sort of logical continuity and allows you to innocently wander into these particular areas.

To add insult to injury, these said areas are immediately east AND west to the goddamn fucking SECOND village.

In order to take on the enemies, you essentially either need to level up — which takes forever due to the low experience points enemies give — or grind until you have enough money to afford better equipment. ¬†Speaking about equipment, here’s a hilarious screenshot:

Forgotten Tales: Expensive shit in the second village
What is up with the prices of the armor?

This is from the shop in the SECOND village. I take it there aren’t many settlements and such in the game so this place probably doubles as “the town that’s before a late game dungeon” as well. At the pace the game is going at, I can tell you that it will be agony to even rack up 1000 pieces of gold.

Another annoyance is that NPCs don’t repeat dialogue nor speak to you again. Some of them do if you return to them after you finish the request they made. ¬†However, if you just so happened to accidentally click out of a conversation because enemies started swarming you while you were talking to someone, you won’t ever know what the hell the person was chatting about unless you reload the game.

Finally, random enemy mobs. It’s not like I’m fleeing from monsters and then running into another group of them. My party is simply walking along the cobblestone path and then BAM! Monsters from literally all directions just come out of no where and charge directly toward it. ¬†As mentioned before, this isn’t something that happens often but the fact that it can still happen is kind of frustrating and shouldn’t even be a possibility.

Android · games

Dragon Tear (JRPG on Google Play)

Note: Please don’t ask me guide or walkthrough-type questions because I have a HORRIBLE memory so even if you ask where to proceed from a certain point in the game, I probably won’t be able to help you. ^^

For some time now, I’ve been looking for games for my Galaxy Tab 10.1. While there are certainly a lot of games on Google Play, there aren’t many that look interesting to me. ¬†It seems that most of the ones I want are only available for folks in Japan. ¬†Well, it’s either that or device incompatibility. :E

Just recently, mmgames put a few of their RPGs on sale. ¬†Like Kemco/Kotobuki Solutions (makers of RPG Alphadia¬†and¬†Symphony of Eternity), mmgames seems to love slapping premium prices onto their apps. ¬†I’m not quite sure why because they’re not spectacular by any means. ¬†Perhaps some of them are ports of renown cell phone games or something. ¬†Who knows? ¬†Anyway, I picked up one of their run-of-the-mill RPGs called Dragon Tear.

Since I’m mostly illiterate to Japanese, some of the following information could be incorrect! ¬†The story seems to revolve around a teen named Enon and his dragon friend, Toa. ¬†The game ¬†begins several years in the past with a young Enon encountering ¬†an injured Toa in the forest near Enon’s hometown. ¬†For some reason, they become friends but because dragons are feared and considered evil creatures and such, Enon keeps the discovery and the friendship with the dragon a secret.

For the next few years, Enon continues to visit Toa (who took up residence in the forest) but one day, a group of bratty kids (I think, I can’t remember if they were adults are not. XD) from ¬†town discover Toa and try to get rid of him. ¬†Enon comes to his friend’s defense but — and this is a little iffy since I kind of rapidly clicked through the dialogue XD — somehow gets severely wounded by the group that wanted to kill the dragon. ¬†At this point, Toa saves Enon by giving him some of his blood which, I believe, is actually some contract of sorts. ¬†I’m not sure if Toa explains it but somewhere along the way, it’s mentioned that humans that receive a dragon’s blood gain incredible strength and powers.

So something happens (^^;;) and the gang of bullies freak out and brand Enon a monster and run back to town.  I suppose, since Toa has been discovered and could no longer stay in the forest, Enon decides to leave with him.

Their journey together eventually gets them involved with the evil empire that’s apparently been partially responsible for all the destruction dragons have been causing. ¬†In fact, it seems like the empire’s trying to create an army full of super humans by infusing soldiers with dragon blood. ¬†Well, at least that’s my interpretation of the events I’m seeing in the game. :3 ¬†If anyone else is playing the game and is fluent in Japanese, I’d really appreciate corrections and more information about the story. ^^

Anyway, Dragon Tear itself plays like those old school NES RPGs such as Dragon Warrior so there are no stupid fetch or hunting quests that are so rampant in mobile RPGs these days, and there’s no convenient auto-mapping feature. (I kind of wish there was one because I got lost in the Forest of Eternity a few times. XD)

The game has a rather strange equipment growth system where weapons and armor increase in strength as you attack and get attacked. ¬†The odd thing about is is that it gets me confused as to when I should be buying new equipment. ¬†I mean, equipment can either have a slow or quick growth rate so if I’m using a weapon with a low base stat and slow growth rate, should I stick with it to max it out? ¬†Or should I ditch it and buy another weapon that has a higher base stat and fast growth? ¬†I think it would have been better if the game actually showed you what an equipment’s maximum stat was so that it would be easier to make the decision of whether or not a piece of armor or weapon should be scrapped.¬†Oh yeah, the selling price of the equipment also increases as its stats grow.

I do believe that armor only grows if the character wearing it gets hit. I’m actually running into a bit of a problem with this right now. XD You see, Toa’s permanently armed with some red dragon jewel or something so he’s an exception to equipment growth. HOWEVER, enemies seem to love picking on him. This means that he takes the brunt of attacks which deprives the other characters of armor growth! >:E

Here’s a random battle screenshot. I took it after Toa got attacked. XD (The text mentioning the amount of damage taken wasn’t finished yet. ^^)

Dragon Tear Battle
Stop picking on Toa!

The strange thing about battles is that there isn’t any option for Enon to invoke some super powerful dragon power move or something. ¬†However, during an event scene, he did seem to have powered up so he could punch some enemy dragons. ¬†(Not entirely certain WHAT he did since the sprite animations are so simple. XD) ¬†But since triggering the dragon blood or whatever knocks him out for a few days, I guess it’s a good thing the option isn’t there. ^.^