Genre: Role Playing Game
Credits: SquareSoft. Screenshots and images courtesy of Amazon.Com and Squaresoft.
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Keep yourself alive!
As special agent Ashely Riot, your mission is to infiltrate the city of evil, Leá Monde. Use your stealth and combat skills to overcome the great dangers awaiting you in this mysterious world, and master the art of magic to uncover the "truth" behind the political intrigue.
Experience a fantastic adventure set in a richly-detailed 3D environment. Revolutionary battle system allowing real-time attacks and combos.
A Total Mind Game >>> by firesenshi (??.??.2000)
From the onset, you'll be greeted with a different kind of cinematic credits--as though you're watching a real period epic film. So I must admit from the start that I was awed by the presence of the characters, let alone that they made their entrances with such strong appeal, which I assure you, would last until the end of the game.
This is because Vagrant Story begins with a compelling mystery at Lea Monde. You'll be inclined to determine its answer and go after its antagonist. The setting is one that is dark and medieval, which by far fits the game's overall mood. You can see it in its backgrounds and maps that this mood is very consistent along with the minor CG sequences.
While you'll tour through impressive architecture in Lea Monde and meet interesting characters in powerful costumes, the graphics that meld them aren't exactly Final Fantasy VIII quality. The backgrounds aren't pre-rendered and there are no stunning FMV sequences. They are all set on normal graphics. No soft polygons. But trust me, this seems to be its only limitation.
The gameplay itself is very unique! My other RPGamer friend commented that it's a different direction for Square. It sure is! However, the gameplay itself can be the setback amongst many gamers. There are many things to think about before venturing into each battle even if it were a minor one. You have to develop weapons for certain type of enemy, each with a DIFFERENT affinity for weapon type, DIFFERENT affinity for elements and their attack power. Before I encounter an enemy, I have to think about all these things and I just finished a strenuous cube puzzle! (Aaarrgh!)
In battle, aside from selecting the right weapon, you must also select the proper attack and defense skills, as well as learning how to chain properly and watching out for your level of Risk. whew! Yup! That's a lot of things to consider before each battle. There are times when I feel I tire myself out of these battles. Of all Square games that I've played, Vagrant Story seems to be the most "difficult." It's not because it's not playable, it's just that the battle system has become so uniquely tailored with many aspects that it seems too much to finish.
For instance, I met the unfriendly Earth Dragon totally unprepared that my damage was unbelivably low--with a ratio of 1:20 against the Dragon's big attacks. It's not that I didn't survive. I felt it was too long to play against the dang thing that on second play, having chosen my buff Spear with a high affinity against dragons (I later named St. George), a tight shield, and an enchanter spell that increases the opposite Air elemental affinity of my weapon, I realized that the Earth Dragon was nothing but a mere lizard, finishing this boss battle in almost 2 minutes. Yup! Drastic effects just by choosing the wrong weapon.
However, it is this complexity of the battle system that makes the game extremely great! Almost every battle is a mind game, plus mind games. They're hardly mundane, but yes, they can tire you. It's simply an assurance that Vagrant Story would give you a challenge.
And I haven't told you about the Final Boss yet! Such a pain that! But as always, like my Earth Dragon story, I lost in the first, but I found the right defenses and found the battle over before I even knew it.
Finish the game. The ending is truly worth it. I haven't told you the best part of the game that drew me to it, and that was the story. The plot revolves around a mystical aura of darkness that is just too cool! I felt I must find out more and more. Almost a cinematic genre in itself.
Maybe this isn't one of Square's foremost projects in terms of CG design, but I never knew Square to be scrimp on talent considering the game's amazing plot and gameplay. The pencil drawings are also wonderful pieces of art.
This game is not for everyone, though, considering what I just told you of the battle system. You will find a lot of elements for which to stay patient. Because so far, I was the only Kraider (Senshi) to finish the game.
DIFFICULTY: Moderate - Difficult
COMPLETION TIME: 40-50 hours
HIGHEST LEVEL ACHIEVED: --
RATINGS: Gameplay 9; Battle 10; Story 10; Visuals 9; Characters 10; Sounds 9; Replay Value 8
Square’s Medieval Masterpiece >>> by Kai Alain (??.??.2000)
Before Seeing the Truth.
I always liked games made by Squaresoft. Why? Do I have to tell why? They're the only one who made RPGs (Role-Playing Games) that made history in the gaming industry. The Final Fantasy Series, Chrono Trigger, the sequel of Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, Parasite Eve and many others. Then it came, Vagrant Story.
If you didn't play this game, I pity you. Vagrant Story made a perfect score in Famitsu, a Japanese gaming magazine that doesn't give all 10 that easily, you probably guessed this game is the best (and also the hardest) Action RPG. After you played and finished the game, the only thing you could say about it is, "Impressive".
"A Mere Tale indeed."
Müllenkamp, a cult headed by a black magic-user named Sydney Losstarot is a threat to all, that's what the high officials say. Sydney's prophecies ring true and other miracles made by Müllenkamp's leader himself, as a result, many followed his teachings and became his loyal followers, and almost everyone sold their souls to him.
One night, the cult seized Duke Bardobora's manor and held the duke's family as hostage. Even a dozen soldiers can't save them. With this, they sent out VKP or the Valendia Knights of Peace's best man, agent Ashley Riot, a risk breaker, as reinforcement. His mission is to take out the demonic cult and save the duke's son and only heir.
As soon as Riot came, he met Callo Merlose, a VKP inquisitor. Merlose informed him that the Crimson Blades is also in the manor with somehow a different purpose. Ashley ignored it and went in.
VS is set on a medieval times, like in Final Fantasy Tactics so expect to be confused in the story the first time you play. As you go on (and on), you will be meeting a lot of characters and finding out the hero's life. I noticed Ashley is a bit of Cloud Strife (FF7). Jerk (heh, heh,J) and always wanted to be alone. On what I understood in the story, Ashley was brainwashed. After that, he was being told a lie that became a truth to him
How battle goes.
The battle system is a turn-based attack, like in Parasite Eve. When you hit the Attack button, a wire frame dome will appear. You can hit any part of the body (head, arm, etc.) enemy if that certain part is in the dome. I'll give ya a tip: the enemy's weakest part is the one you merely see like the abdomen of the Durahan, the neck of the Dragon and so on.
VS are populated with monsters. So like my big brother told me, "Kill him with a weapon!"J. The best part of the game is the weapon customization system. There are about 300 weapons (I only got 100) to create and more than 5 type of weapons. I get frustrated when I lose a good weapon for a weak one. I always follow my motto, "Save Before You Make"
Abilities are one of the most needed in the game. Break Art, think Limit break in FF7. You kill certain amount of enemies using a weapon (e.g. sword) and you'll be rewarded a Break Art for your weapon (e.g. Rending Gale). Chain Ability is used when you pushed a button at the exact time when Ashley is hit or attack.
When you look at the status screen of the weapon you'll notice Damage Points (DP) and Power Points (PP). Using Repair in the workshop and always using a weapon is a good thing for your DP and PP.
So that's about it!!! Hope you understand this little article of mine. If you have questions, remarks and insults, Email me at email@example.com
COMPLETION TIME: 30-60 hours
HIGHEST LEVEL ACHIEVED: --
RATINGS: Gameplay 10; Battle 10; Story 10; Visuals 8; Characters 10; Sounds 10; Replay Value 8