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Thread: WK Plays FFXIII-2

  1. #16
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Okay, played quite a bit more. Started and dealt with the Academy stuff and the rogue A.I. I will do my breakdown a little later, I'm pretty tired.

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  3. #18
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Okay let's do the breakdown.

    Pros
    • Unlocked the Full ATB Bar attacks and they are neat.
    • Got a Behemoth as a companion and he's badass, especially with the Buff Feral Link
    • I liked the rogue A.I./Fal'Cie idea. Gave me a nice Chrono Cross vibe in a good way.
    • The Snow becoming a l'Cie again plotline is interesting...
    • I got a Sazh reference.
    • I feel like Noel's rant about Snow comes from fan feedback the developers coyly put into the game for.
    • Finally got some mechanical monsters, which is great because I have a crap ton of their leveling materials.
    • Have most of the skills unlocked for the party.
    • Surprisingly to even me, Mog and Chocolina have really endeared themselves to me. It helps Mog doesn't talk as much as I thought they would and Chocolina plays in hard to how ridiculous she is.


    Cons
    • The load times in this game are getting a little annoying.
    • I am also not a fan of some of the DMC inspired battle tracks. I feel less pumped up and more like I'm playing a different game. Not helped one plays with the Snow chapter and h casually looks like he could be Dante's alcoholic half brother.
    • The Academy dungeon was tedious, an I hated how often enemies would just spawn right on top of you. Not helping is the aggro range for a few of them are a little ridiculous. I almost feel like this dungeon was meant to be some arbitrary leveling bottleneck forced onto the player.
    • Speaking of dungeons, I am a little annoyed the game is quick to re-use assets. Like I realize now that while I've opened up almost ten timelines, barring the two obvious side content ones of the Coliseum and the Serendipity, I've really only visited maybe five or six actual locations and I've redone three areas twice at this point. Way to use time travel to cut down on the cost of making places. Even more annoying is the Achlytte Steepe zone which has the annoying weather machines to make you the player screw around with it o traverse the same map four different times. Maybe the DMC reference wasn't out of place...
    • I am annoyed that I can't beat this one Undying Cieth for a mission you get way too early in the game. She has a monstrous amount of health and loves inflicting status effects. I feel like I could possibly beat her now, but the fight would go on for over an hour and I just don't do fights like that anymore.
    • I'm getting annoyed that some of my monsters have just hit a brick wall in terms of development due to finding it hard to acquire the materials needed to level them consistently. Granted, I think this was partially designed to force me to use different monsters, but I'm quickly falling into Complacent Gaming Syndrome.
    • Snow being a l'Cie would be interesting if A) 80% of the plotline wasn't hidden behind DLC and supplement materials, and B) If instead of Snow traveling through time too, he was simply traveling the long way, since his l'Cie nature would make that a thing.
    • I'm a little disappointed that the time traveling of this game is mostly concerned with everything that happened after FFXIII and doesn't let you really explore anything before or during it. Granted there is still time to prove me wrong, and I have a feeling the aforementioned Archlytte Steepe timeline is actually a distant past, speaking of...
    • I wish the visual diagram of the timeline was more clear. Feels weird sometimes when the game sends me in the past but places me down the line further than the time frame I was in. It just looks visually messy and its messing with my OCD.
    • Did I just witness Serah pull a Bill and Ted?
    • You know the XIII universe needs? A proper sociopath. XIII's universe would work so much better if there were a few more sociopaths running around to take the piss out of all this manufactured drama.
    • I feel like the XIII universe is one of the most Lovecraftian cosmic horror stories in the FF universe, but unlike Lovecrafts idea of fear, the universe is just smurfing annoying and troutty to live in because all the god beings are either jerk asses or grossly incompetent at their jobs.


    I feel it is safe to say that the honeymoon phase of the FFXIII-2 experience is over. While I'm not quite hating on the game as XIII due to the gameplay being a marked up improvement, I am certainly getting to the point where I wish the game would just get on with it already. I may just skip Lightning Returns and start FFXII after I finish this one.

  4. #19
    Radical Dreamer Fynn's Avatar
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    Yeah, the time travel in this game always rubbed me the wrong way because it always felt the only reasons it was there was 1) to Reuse assets and 2) Chrono Trigger polled the highest when SE asked the players which of their games people like the most. Except CT is a masterclass of implementing that well and XIII-2 throws it in pretty haphazardly without regard for what really makes stories like that compelling. You never go back into the past in any way shape or form, which is a bummer because I think your past in XIIIís world is way more interesting

    I would personally still recommend sticking around for LR. Itís a controversial game, but I personally think itís the best one of the three by far. In fact, Iíd say that it feels like the game the team really wanted to make all along, with XIII-2 feeling like it was made to just quickly hold the fans over while they worked on that, what with the asset reuse and ďfan feedback implementationĒ. Itís also the shortest, and plays he most differently

  5. #20
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    I have some opinions of what XIII-2 is in the larger picture, but I'll get to that after I finish the game and do my write up.

  6. #21
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    Got a little done last night. Didn't really move the story along, instead I started using Wild Artefacts to open up some optional timelines to dick around in.

    Pros
    • Got a Green Chocobo and it's a pretty snazzy Medic
    • I kind of like the weird Orb event. Has this eerie quality I quite like, I just wish I didn't have to traipse between two timelines to resolve all of it.
    • Been playing around with some more Monster Combos and I'm thinking it may almost be time to start playing around the Infusion mechanic, because that right there seems like the easiest way to break this game and I've been ignoring it so far.
    • I am very grateful that XIII-2 doesn't wait until a mission activates to unlock an item needed for it. The missions in these optional timelines have been fairly easy and straightforward and I've managed to pick up several of the mission item while just looking around the map before I even knew what they were for.
    • I like the fact the character models change when they are in the snow.
    • In terms of usefulness, Bellow by the Behemoth is my favorite Feral Link. In terms of just awesomeness, Thousand Hands by my Tomato Flan is my favorite for the Bruce Lee reference.
    • Now that I've actually gained some more chocobos, I should probably check out Chocobo racing.


    Cons
    • Why did I have to travel almost a hundred years into the future to retrieve a watch? Wouldn't it be practically useless now because of the elements breaking it down?
    • I'm starting to notice an annoying theme in XIII's universe and it sort of drains all the emotional impact for me.
    • The other annoying trend in the XIII trilogy so far are people having the worst communication skills. More than any other FF I can think of, I feel like a good chunk of the conflict and "drama" could be resolved if everyone would just sit down and talk to each other.
    • The Clock Puzzle was incredibly annoying, especially when you stumble upon it at 2am
    • God, I wish I could figure out where the materials for organic monsters level ups are because my organic monsters, which comprise of like 80% of the monsters I own currently, have all been stuck at the mid 20s range for ages now. Machine monsters would have the same issue, except most of them cap out at Lv. 20 since Early Bloomer is a common trait for all of them.

  7. #22
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Just a smidge don last night.

    Pros
    • Infusions are definitely the game breaker mechanic. Made my green Chocobo much more useful by teaching them Esuna and giving them some Physical resistance buffs. My Tomato Flan can now cast multiple magic types and also got some nice magic buffs as well. You almost have to do it for Synergist and Sabatuer's since very few of them cover enough of the spell list to do the class justice.
    • Just figured out you can further customize paradigm sets to be more focused or spread out in their actions. This has turned Ravager into an awesome role for mopping up mobs.
    • Finished the Giant Cauctar quest.
    • Discovered the purpose of the Archlyte Steppe weather nonsense is due to the fact the enemies encountered in each weather section drop the leveling items for organic monsters. So I've been farming a little tonight.
    • Unlocked all the skills for Noel and Serah
    • Got 5000 coins in slots


    Cons
    • Ugh, getting bored traipsing through four different versions of the Yachis Mansef region for side quests.
    • That damn Undying optional fight is annoying as hell. Twice now, I've nearly beaten her and all her stupid status magic nonsense, and she still manages to kill me towards the end because I'm guessing she has some kind of attack that does damage based on how many status effects I have on. I will attempt it again, but damn this fight is annoying...
    • Part of the reasoning being that items suck in this game and unless you're purposely controlling the Medic, they prioritize HP over curing status effects. Hell curing statuses takes forever because unless you know he item in question needed, Esuna and Remedy cure one status in the order they are inflicted instead of some better priority scale like curing Fog first. It's fights like these that shows the weakness of the Paradigm system and the superiority of the Gambit system. But again, XIII has way too many status effects.
    • I kind of wish the game would let you have a monster slot for every role when making paradigm sets. Would like to add a Sentinel into my grouping because I feel it's the one role that neither Serah or Noel are particularly good at.
    • I definitely feel like the Sabatuer class has been nerfed in this entry. It just seems like they take forever to inflict statuses on things and whereas most of the other roles seem adequate enough without infusions, the spell list for this role is spread thin among all the monsters within the role, making infusions a must to get something useful out of it. Not helped that the class feels a little underwhelming in this entry. In fact I feel like SYN, SAB and SEN have all been downgraded somewhat in this entry in terms of being useful.
    • Did not appreciate the weather pattern in the Archlyte Steppe that makes all the enemies into Cieth, including a few that were Undying from XIII.


    Anyway, I'm going to play

  8. #23
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Got some more done

    Pros
    • Finally beat that damn Cieth monster in Yachis Mansef, now I just need to beat the giant Silver Lobo looking beast in the other timeline.
    • I've almost got half of the available Fragments collected.
    • Manage to farm the materials needed to make the weapons that increase the ATB gauge speed by 30%.
    • Finished all four Brain Wizard quizzes. I've also found Captain Cryptic twice.
    • Obtained Twilight Odin, I just need to return to the Archelyte Steepe to farm the growth materials to level him up because he is a sad boy.
    • Have all the Roles for Serah and Noel at Lv. 60+
    • The Vile Peaks scenario was pretty snazzy.
    • I finally got to see Sazh!!!
    • My head canon is that Mog's line about the nature of Time Anomaly Puzzle rooms is the staff taking a jab at their superiors and themselves for releasing an incomplete game with the original FFXIII.


    Cons
    • Ugh, I hate the clock puzzle anomaly.
    • I can't say I'm a huge fan of Academia's layout. The place is smurfing huge and I'm annoyed the map doesn't really show vertical perspective very well. Also, why is almost every Fragment connected to a quiz game in this world that involves scrounging around the map?
    • Ugh, finding Wild Artefacts is a pain. I have at least two more portals that need it to finish the Mog quest and the Graviton Core quest-lines. I can buy one in Serendipity, that involves playing the game. I guess I'll go move the plot along...
    • I can tell more people on this forum played FFXV than XIII-2. How, you may ask? Because people won't shut up about the blatant DLC pandering of FFXV, but honestly XIII-2 did it first. Oh Snow disappeared, I'll see him later in the plot. Oops, never mind, his story line picks back up in the Coliseum DLC. Oh hey, I found Serendipity, some of the Fragments mention Sazh is here... Nope he's also in the DLC. Say what you will about XV's handling of DLC, at least it told you enough to get the gist of what happened in it and we moved on, but I get to read about Snow and Sazh's adventures on my off time.
    • I need my OCD to let go and just let me finish this game.

  9. #24
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Not a very productive night tonight. I completed the mission dealing with the monster Yeul banished and I grind a bit in the Archylte Steepe for awhile. Tried my hand at a few of the monsters hunts that opened up in the area and was obliterated for my trouble. Then I went to Serendipity and spent the rest of the night trying to get some coins in the slots and watched as I lost 6000+ coins that I started with. I thankfully saved before this endeavor, but oh man, I hate slots in gambling mini-games. They are just not fun in real life or virtual. I lost my will to play around this time and called it a night. I may do the auto-play rubber band trick tomorrow night and spend my evening cruising online instead. Maybe get back to work on that FFVII retrospective.

  10. #25
    Radical Dreamer Fynn's Avatar
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    I like how in DQ the slots are rigged ridiculously in your favor. Other games take notes

  11. #26
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fynn View Post
    I like how in DQ the slots are rigged ridiculously in your favor. Other games take notes
    That depends on the version you're playing. My PS1 DQVII game definitely doesn't feel like the Slots were ever rigged in my favor.

  12. #27
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    Did a little screwing around. Game is not being subtle about the whole, "While this might not be the end of side content in the game, we've looked at the clock and realized we haven't really been doing much with this overall narrative. So now we're going to cram all the plot into this game right now and railroad you for awhile because that's what I do best! ~ Love Motomu Toriyama" So, I am doing what I can at the moment before plunging into story mode.

    Pro
    • Managed to defeat the Immortal and Ochu in the Archlyte Steepe. Still need to beat the Long Gui and the bargain brand version of XIII's ultimate boss.
    • Got a Cauctar
    • Took a few attempts, but got 12,000+ coins in the Casino and the fragment that goes with it. I'm still debating about what to spend it on, but may wait until I get the Bargain Skill after Chapter 5. I imagine by the final chapter, Gil will be useless, so I'll use that to buy coins to purchase all the items I need from Serendipity.


    Cons
    • The Casino in this game sucks and requires way too much work or exploits to get anything going. I'm sort of grateful I can't access the Sahz DLC now.
    • With that said, trying to hunt down Wild Artefacts to unlock optional zones is annoying and I hate being mocked by the one in Serendipity that I have to purchase for 10,000 coins.
    • The few fragments I need to grab at this point are either Captain Cryptic's BS, that obnoxious 100% map completion quest in 400AF Academia, killing the last two optional bosses in the Archlyte Steepe, the Casino, or are hidden behind optional zones I can't access yet because of a lack of Wild Artefacts. So yeah... just the tedious annoying trout.
    • A little annoyed to discover that the Mystic in Serendipity doesn't reward you skills based on how many fragments you've acquired as much as she rewards you for obtaining certain one, mainly story ones.

  13. #28
    Memento Mori Site Contributor Wolf Kanno's Avatar
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    More or less finished Chapter 5 and heading into the final stretch of the game. XIII-2 has officially reached the same point as FFXIII where the more you actually think about what's going on in the plot, the less it makes any sense because the writers didn't quite think the idea through.

    I also think FFXIII-2 is the only FF where I've seen a villain get his ass handed to him easily in the battle, only for the cutscene to step in and show the big bad won. I can't actually think of another FF where this occurs as usually the villain will just pull some super move out of their ass (looking at you Beatrix and Kuja) once their HP=0 and the cutscene feels fitting.

    I'll do a proper breakdown later, but understand that the rant is coming...

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  15. #30
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    Okay, let's do a proper breakdown.

    Pros:
    • Finally was able to get the last few map completions for New Bodhum and Vile Peaks.
    • Got a Gold Chocobo
    • The Noel Flashback was actually pretty well one. I like the lighting and the music of the area. I liked that is made Serah's outfit red instead of the dark pink it usually is, and sort of wished they had gone with that color scheme instead.
    • Hey, Vanille and Fang finally got a cameo.
    • I sort of knew something was up with Alyssa, never trust the new people.


    Cons:
    • Yep, this was an evening of cramming all the plot and what was going on all in one go.
    • I feel my biggest issue with the monster mechanics is that regardless of class they are, they always start at lv.1 and that is a huge problem. I've obtained on several occasions some cool and rare monster allies, but they mostly sit in my storage bin because despite being like some of the highest class of monster, starting off at lv. 1 with no skills, troutty stats, and requiring very rare XP items I have to grind for to level them up before their costs get exorbitant makes it easier to bench them. I was excited to get Twilight Odin for instance, but it's just going to take too damn long to get him up to speed to make it worth investing in him. I feel an easier solution would have been to make a monsters level synonymous with their class rank, so my Class 4 and 5 monsters should have started at Lv. 40+ so they would have high stats to compensate or not having skills and needing expensive items to get them. I get that infusion was meant to soften this blow, but by endgame, levels do actually matter.
    • I never noticed until the scene where fake Lightning reaches out her hand, how off the hands look in the in-game character models. Gives me some uncomfortable flashbacks to Xenosaga Episode 2.
    • I don't want to go into too many details at the moment since I'll likely be leaving this rant for the final overview, but XIII-2's plot has an FFX problem, by which I mean I find the rules of the scenario to be contrived, and even with those limitations, I can't help but feel like there were simpler solutions to a lot of the problems in the story so far. Etro, especially, is the cause of all the issues in the plot and even she could have actually reduced some of those issues if she was actually smart instead of creating even more contrived problems. Hell the logic of the scenario sort of zaps a lot of the sympathy I could have garnered for Caius, since it's his own actions that are really causing a Yeul murder spree at the moment.
    • I can definitely say for a fact that knowing the ending to this game already makes it harder to actually care about any problems in the story. Like I already know this is a Shaggy Dog plot.

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