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    I like VII more than I let on, but I'm also not exactly the biggest fan of it either. I think I mentioned it awhile back, but I honestly don't have any real nostalgia for it like a lot of fans do, and I was already neatly invested with the RPG genre before it came out so it was hardly my first RPG either. If I ever get further down the road with my Retrospectives, I'm sure the one I give for VII might be interesting for a few folks around here.
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    I've been bouncing back and forth between FFVII, FFV, Pokemon Ruby, and Soul Hackers. I've also been meaning to jump back into Trials of Mana since I never finished my playthrough. VII is almost done, I was at the end anyway and just needed to clean up the extra stuff like Master Materia and WEAPONS. I actually took both down last night with little problem. I really need to jump back into FFV for both the Let's Play and the retrospective article I started.

    I now realize the reason I missed Legend of Heroes series is because the franchise has a knack for always being on systems I don't play on very much. Didin't realize it started as a PSP title with the original remake. I know its all on Steam, but I have such a bad track record with playing games on my PC, especially if they can't be beaten in one session.

    What have you been playing?
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    Yeah, it really is odd how it has taken the genre so long to catch up with difficulty curves. It feels like only Action-RPGs in the past really bothered. Then again, the genre use to be pretty challenging back in the day as well, so years of just trying to make it accessible has pretty much destroyed that old reputation.

    As for whittling Elizabeth down, unfortunately that doesn't work. Yes she only heals once, but once her health dips below 9999hp a second time, she just switches to Pixie and spams her overpowered Megidoloan spell until you're dead, so you really cannot let her heal even once.

    As for Masakado's Shadow, yeah this fight is pretty brutal, but like most of the fights the difficult part is really just making the right team to beat him, and as I mentioned, acquiring them is a challenge because all of them are optional DLC bosses with their own bulltrout requirement. Sanat and Ancient of Days are the optional Law and Chaos superbosses and both of them have their own BS issues like the fact that they have specific counters for exploiting their weaknesses that make doing so impossible to beat them. The only thing that really saves you with any of these bosses is the fact SMTIV drops the defense stat entirely, so it really comes down to shaving off all of their health quickly before they start spamming their BS moves.
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    Well I know how annoying looking for work can be, I've been in out of different jobs most of my life. Just keep your eyes and ears open and something will come along.

    I never really worried about the screwing up my characters, even if you purposely try, it's harder to do than people think it is. I figure the freedom would just feel more rewarding, but chances are I would likely just send everyone down the same path anyway because I'm just so use to that being their role. My biggest issue with FFX's gameplay has always been the low difficulty, and while I agree it probably worked out better for SE by making the game more accessible, by that point in my life I was wishing for something with a little more teeth, which is probably why I jumped into SMT so easily.

    As for Elizabeth, well it depends on which version you're playing. She's the most difficult in the original, mainly because you don;t have something like Orpheus Telos available, who is pretty much designed to fight her. So the challenge was making sure you had the proper Persona with the proper skills, and then each round involves you having to switch to the next persona who has resistance to whatever move she needs next as she'll auto-kill you if you have any higher immunity. The real challenge is that you need High Counter and you need to keep track of her health. She has 20,000hp and if you knock her health below 10,000 she will always use her Pixie persona to heal herself back to full health. So the trick becomes that around 10,000hp, you have to defend and hope she tries to use her uncommon physical attack and then hope high counter activates and knocks her health below 10,000 so you can then use the Armageddon Fusion Spell to kill her on your actual turn. The later bosses don't quite have that RNG element to them thankfully. FES makes this easier on NG+ because in addition to only being available in that mode, you're more likely to do a perfect Sociol Link Run meaning you get Orpheus Telos who has resistance to all elements, only learns victory cry, and being the Fool arcana means he learn any skill. My issue in the last file I did was I didn't teach him High Counter, meaning I have to rely on an accessory that really needed to be different accessory making the fight more complicated than it really needs to be.

    The Masakado fight in SMTIV is especially brutal because in addition to it being a timed mission where you only have so many rounds to win, he is immune to everything that isn't almighty element and his main special attack is always treated like he hit your elemental weakness even if your demons don't have one allowing him to do ridiculous damage, get extra turns, and most damning of all, getting the Smirk status that practically makes him invincible. My real complaint of the fight is that you pretty much require two of the other DLC episodes if you want to even stand a chance as its possible to gain the four archangels who each possess a skill that has the Pierce ability which bypasses all of his stupid resistances. Not that beating those four is an easy task in itself...

    Yeah, I feel RPGs really need to start incorporating Hard Modes, and personally, instead of just making hard mode mean everything has higher stats, I would like to hope they pull a chapter out of FFIV DS and offer a remix of the enemies and bosses where the strategies for beating them change themselves just to throw the player a curve ball.
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    Oddly enough, I haven't. I beat DDS1 a few years back but haven't played part 2 yet. I have tackled Elizabeth in both the original P3 and P3:FES but never saw much reason to beat her, so I kind of left that on my to-do-list. I'm not as much into superbosses like I was back in the day. I do plan on tackling both, but in the case of Elizabeth, I have a bad tendency to always make a mistake like waiting too long or not building the right Personas and being low on resources, that I always say I'll try to beat her next round and never do. She's a bit like Beelzebub in Nocturne, who is either the hardest boss in the game, or a push over depending upon how early you start building a team to beat him specifically. I'm also still trying to beat Masakados and the Fiends in SMTIV.

    I've been meaning to tackle X-2 again, I started a new game like two years ago, but lost interest quickly. I've been debating about picking up the HD Remaster of the Spira titles, because I feel I might get more of a kick out of the Master Sphere Grid than the vanilla version. So who knows.

    I can understand about not wanting to use certain "cheats" though I'll admit Dark Souls kind of got me over the "honor code" system cause screw some of those guys. I don;t think I've ever beaten Manus or the Maneater fights fairly cause those fights are BS and I find the cheat amusing (long story short, you can actually kill them without ever entering their boss arena as long as you have a strong enough bow and plenty of arrows) but I do that with some fights.

    As for Neo Shinryu, he's actually pretty easy to beat as you can pretty much use the same strategy for beating his normal form of using Dragon Lances and just equipping the right gear to nullify most of his attacks. He has moire health and better stats, but most of his move set is the same except for having Mighty Guard and Almagast. He does have a final attack he uses when he dies, but his magic attack is not that great so its not really a big deal and chances are, you'll have one character still in "Jump" mode to bypass all of it. The Dragon's Den was pretty fun for me though, mainly because several of the bosses were either designed to counter some of the game's more exploitative abilities, while others were just pure puzzle style boss that made you think outside of the box. So it wasn't so much that I found it hard as much as it was intellectually stimulating, which is what I prefer from a boss fight in general.
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    I got pretty far in the FFX Monster Arena on my original save file way back in the day, but this is the U.S. version so I didn't have access to Penance. I beat both Weapons in FFX as well but we both know they aren't the real superbosses of that game.

    I finished all of the Mark Hunt in FFXII and all but Omega XII for the optional bosses. Yiazmat kind of tired me out so I just didn't have the willpower to try to beat him, though I have faced him. I still need to play through the Trials mode in Zodiac Age to face the Judges, whom I have heard from multiple sources are one of the more challenging bosses within the series. I also still need to fight off Yiazmat and Omega in the TZA version as well.

    X-2 is definitely the odd one out, I just have a really difficult time getting past the characters and story to enjoy it, so it was a struggle just to finish the game in the first place for me, so I never challenged the bosses in that one either. Though I'm well aware of how hard they are. In the cases of both Spira entries and KH2 even, I've had friends who were obsessed enough to import the real versions of the games and show off how ridiculous a lot of those bosses really are, so I've seen them in action but never from a personal playthrough.

    I think I did all but maybe three Hunts in FFXIII and I think I'm down to just one or two more optional superbosses in FFXV as well. I've also never bothered/can't face the superbosses in the DS remakes of FFIII and IV. I have beaten all of the super challenges from the first IX games though.
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    Yes, especially since the battle system is Chrono Trigger while the plot is FFX/Tales of Symphonia.
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    Sort of, I'd say I am Setsuna vs. Final Fantasy X, since their premises are pretty much the same. Setsuna largely resolved a bunch of my issues with FFX in terms of tone and setting.
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    Also, I now get to expose you to all of the cool CT remixes out there.
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    Ha that is pretty funny.
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About Karifean

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August 7, 1996 (24)
About Karifean
Real Name:
Fabian Mitscha-Eibl
Wandering the Kakera
Student (Software & Information Engineering)
Japanese Language, Visual Novels, Computer Science
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Final Fantasy X
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A Modern Guide to Ys - Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA

by Karifean on 01-12-2020 at 12:17 AM


If it's not clear by now, I adore the Ys series. I love how purely fun these games are, I love the simple sense of adventure, and the sense of genuine mystique from uncovering the lore of ancient places of legend. I love the way Falcom humanizes their characters and really makes them feel 'real' in a way other studios' JRPGs struggle to match. And whatever I may have said about Celceta it still is a game that has a lot of that.

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A Modern Guide to Ys - Ys: Memories of Celceta (Ys IV)

by Karifean on 01-03-2020 at 10:09 PM


Time for a quick history lesson! Ys IV's history is a strange one indeed. Back around its initial release there were actually two games that were Ys IV, there was "Ys IV: Dawn of Ys" by Hudson Soft on the PC Engine (TurboGrafx-16) CD-ROM, and then there was "Ys IV: Mask of the Sun" by Tonkin House on the SNES. How did that happen? Well Falcom were in a bit of a situation at

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A Modern Guide to Ys - Ys Seven

by Karifean on 01-03-2020 at 01:37 AM


Heading into the final era of Ys games and in the series' timeline the chronologically last of the localized games so far we have Ys Seven. Released for the PSP in late 2009 and ported to the PC years later, this game marks a heavy departure from earlier titles in the series in terms of graphics, gameplay and storytelling alike. The shift was met with mixed reception, but given all that came out of it, I couldn't be

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A Modern Guide to Ys - Ys Origin

by Karifean on 12-31-2019 at 10:03 PM


Now for perhaps one of the best-known games in the series, Ys Origin has gained quite a bit of notoriety especially on Steam, probably mainly because its Steam trailer is super hype. Does it deserve it? Well, to put it very simply... hell yeah it does.

As mentioned already, in Ys Origin you do not play as Adol. That's because this game is a prequel to the Ys I & II duology,

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A Modern Guide to Ys - Ys: The Oath in Felghana (Ys III)

by Karifean on 12-30-2019 at 10:55 PM


The third Ys game was known in the SNES era as "Wanderers of Ys", and was the game to introduce a lot of the western world to the series. Its reputation overall has been mixed, being a sort of "Zelda II: The Adventure of Link" of the Ys series, ditching the overhead view for a sidescrolling adventure and as already implied not really being about the land of Ys at all anymore,

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