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    Hamauzu has an incredibly distinct voice, and yeah, it can become very jarring at times. Personally, I don’t even really have a problem with it since for example Unlimited Saga seems divorces enough from the rest that the soundtrack just happens to bring that out a bit more. It’s a different style but at least it’s still internally consistent.

    Though I feel the issue with what I sent you is different. True, Shimomura has her own distinct voice (side note: it’s funny to me how both she and Hamauzu are the most classically trained of the SE composers and both sound very distinct, and yet absolutely nothing like each other at the same time), but while she may rank above Ishimoto on my personal preference list, Ishimoto is still imo a very capable composer. I even like his KH tracks for the most part, like the Vanitas themes which I think is pretty interesting. The issue here is that he just... goes for the most basic mashup of Guardando nel Buio, Rage Awakened and some other battle themes, trying his best to ape Shimomura, while also adding those smurfing high-pitched violins he put everywhere in Type-0 that drive me absolutely nuts. He’s trying to do an impression without even knowing how to do it’s Ishimoto’s orchestrations are hollow, completely lacking the rich, romantic textures of Shimomura’s work. And most damningly, Shimomura’s final battle themes were always something incredible. She never relied on easy remixes - Darkness of the Unknown, l’Impeto Oscuro, Vector to the Heavens - they all really felt like unique tracks that were tailor-made for the final battle and it always felt epic. This just feels sad
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    I do agree, but I’m mostly fine with it. I feel it’s kind of a similar issue to how Harry Potter is very rarely someone’s favorite character from that series - we step in their shoes so their personality kinda blends.

    Meanwhile, I’ve been looking at the KH3 soundtrack a bit and I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but Ishimoto did the final battle music. And he completely botched it.


    Luckily, Shimomura got to do some music for the secret boss of the reMind DLC. Honestly, I feel only she can do KH music right

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    I actually think the band is the perfect representation of the four classic temperaments. Gladiolus is choleric, Prompto is sanguine, Ignis is melancholic and Noctis is phlegmatic. I’ve honestly recently been thinking how if you want a cast of four to really be compelling, they’ll usually just naturally fall into this pattern. Don’t know why that is but it looks like the Greeks were on to something.

    But yeah, overall I’m really fond of this writing and these characters, and I’m enjoying the plot and world building a whole bunch as well. I also do enjoy the fact that Gladio is the one to read a book since I feel that’s one of the things that show he really isn’t what he seems at first glance - even though most scenes reinforce that preconception. Prompto is the one that just makes me go “look, it me” the most and idk if that’s a good thing or if I should be embarrassed lol. Ignis is a total sweetie. I remember some people complaining at launch that he’s a total emotionless robot but like, there’s just so much to him? He’s funny, he’s smart and he definitely cares - he’s just not as outward about it. Noctis is pretty cool too and I enjoy him being lazy, but since the main plot is really about him, I feel that with him we learn much more about what he has to do rather than learning who he is. But then he’s also our viewpoint character so that’s a bit understandable I’d say.

    But yeah, overall, thoroughly enjoying my playthrough. Hopelessly sucked in. Every day I’m counting the hours until I can play again. It’s great.
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    Hm. Well thanks regardless. By the way I’ve noticed an interesting thing in the lead up to the Titan fight. Gladio is uncharestically mean towards Noctis and then Noctis tells him he’s thankful for his father. That bit was so good because it told us that Gladio is actually mourning his father (something which to that point made me think bordered on plothole), that he’s getting through it by focusing on his job and not talking about it, and then that final kind just shows that he and Noctis share an incredibly tight bond because Noctis understood even though nothing was directly stated. It’s this kind of subtle writing that I absolutely love about this game because I feel it’s been missing in the series. This is real fine mature writing.
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    Hey so all those coins and banknotes. They’re the only loot I’m not selling right now since I recall someone saying they’re important. Do you know what they’re for?
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    So I found this amusing

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    Ok cool thanks
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    So I know the Royal Arms are mostly optional but do you remember if they’re connected to some side quests or if they’re just found randomly around the map?
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    Oh yeah, while a lot of the design reminds me of XII in a good way, it’s definitely not as ahead of its time as that game was. And yet at the same time I’ve kind of accepted that FF doesn’t really need to break any new ground, and just the fact that I’m loving it FAR more than I had anticipated is really enough for me at this point. SE did need to catch up and honestly? I feel their effort in that regard is really solid. I’ve seen a lot of people complaining about the open world, but I really don’t think it’s clearly inferior to any of the other open worlds that I’ve played around in. I can’t help but feel the weight of expectations for this game has made people way too critical of it.

    Though I do hope it’ll get looked on as FFXII is now eventually. I know a lot of new players loved it. My brother’s girlfriend actually played this as her first FF and loved it so much she cried, and from what I’ve seen online, a lot of people have that reaction. And even now in my little thread I can see that now that the emotions have died down, people actually have mostly positive things to say about the game. So I’m hoping XV will eventually be remembered fondly.
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    I actually really like the gameplay so far. The open world is fun to explore and I wouldn’t say it really pales in comparison to Xenoblade X, Witcher 3 or BotW. I love each of those worlds fir different reasons and while XV’s quest design leaves something to be desired, it’s got plenty of character both in the form of party banter as well as the various side characters with their own little storylines. I also really like the battle system. It’s not super complex, but I really enjoy the button holding. It feels like an old man’s action RPG battle mode and somehow that’s just perfect for me when I just want to unwind in the evening after a hard day’s work

    But honestly, I feel XV’s overall story is good not only because of the characters, but the themes seem to be really nice and mature too. There’s a certain level of tragedy to the Lucis family line that I don’t think we’ve seen in FF before. Regis is basically Job, except this time there’s no angel that comes to stop him from fulfilling a tyrannical God’s cruel request. I find it funny how this is pretty much a similar set-up to FFX, but it actually feels tragic this time because the characters feel so human and there’s no “screw this let’s just take down the gods” moment. (At least until Dawn of the Future...)

    One last thought I have on FNC is that I feel XV and Type-0 embody the theme much better that XIII ever did, and the reason for that is painfully simple. XIII tried to distance itself from previous FFs way too hard, while the other two wear their legacy on their sleeves. It’s hard to do a story deconstructing Classic FF setups when you don’t actually reference the thing being deconstructed. In XIII, the l’Cie are chosen by fal’Cie - they may be stand-ins for the crystals, but they’re so far removed from the crystals both in concept and design that you really have to squint to see the connection between the two. Whereas FFXV literally starts with a line about four heroes of light chosen by the crystal and Type-0 has four crystals keeping the world in balance. I feel like both of those games show what FNC was really designed to be. But then of course Toriyama did his thing and smurfed it up.
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Nowhere and Everywhere
Writing,gaming, martial arts, music, and the occult...
  • Former Cid's Knight
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Wolf Manno, Reginald the Dastardly, Ultima Weapon
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WK's Top 100 Lost but Not Forgotten : Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together

by Wolf Kanno on 05-24-2020 at 11:43 PM

I'm always split on these articles. So many of these games are great and I have retroactively said a few of them made the list, but occasionally something comes along that I really want to love but the game just won't let me. Tactics Ogre is in a weird place for me because the remake and the original are pretty different in some meaningful ways, so much of this review pertains to the remake due to having only played a little bit of the original.

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Updated 06-01-2020 at 09:44 PM by Wolf Kanno

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WK's Top 100's Lost but Not Forgotten List: Silent Hill 3

by Wolf Kanno on 05-03-2020 at 01:37 AM
Is this honestly the first non-RPG on this list?

Well I fell into the Silent Hill series rather late. By the time I had played the series, the "glory years" were over and fans were knee deep in Konami trying to take the series in a different direction without Team Silent. I was a huge fan of the first two entries of the series, being instantly sucked into the second entry and surprised how much I really enjoyed the first one. So it came as a bit

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WK's Top 100 Lost But Not Forgotten: SaGa Frontier 2

by Wolf Kanno on 04-05-2020 at 02:32 AM
I was having a serious reservation about whether I was going to add this to my Top 100 list or place it here. I decided it would go here for now, but part of me feels it could be like Demon's Souls and make the jump to My Top 100.

SaGa is a weird franchise. A JRPG series made for enthusiast who feel they've seen it all. From the Gameboy entries where you built a ragtag group filled with robots and monster to climb a tower/tree to visit

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Updated 08-13-2020 at 07:54 AM by Wolf Kanno

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My Top 100's Lost but Not Forgotten: Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep

by Wolf Kanno on 01-30-2020 at 08:17 PM
You know the drillÖ

I mentioned this in my Chain of Memories entry for my Top 100 List, but Kingdom Hearts and I have a really awkward history with each other. This is a franchise that has always been more of a guilty pleasure for me than something I actively love. Funny enough, itís not even the basic premise that bothers me. While Final Fantasy meets Disney mash-up sounds contrived, KH has always managed to make it work since this

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My Top 100's Lost but Not Forgotten: Xenosaga Episode III: Also Sprach Zarathustra

by Wolf Kanno on 12-30-2019 at 09:56 PM
Top 100 List Blah blah blahÖ. I ended up re-writing this entry because the original was a little more bitter and more like just a genuine rant than a review. With that said, a little backstory is in order.

Continuing my trend of snubbed entries in franchises, we now come back to a series that was very near and dear to me. At this point in time, the story of

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