Grandia II, among other things

Few more Game-y things:

Over the trip I finished Final Fantasy IV DS and Advance Wars DS.  I was impressed with both, however:

  • FFIV has a tendency to slow down around 15 hours in.  This should be familiar to those who played the original (particularly the PSX remake, since it was the original difficulty).  You can Slow every enemy in the game, bosses included, which is the only winning strategy against most.  Augments make the game more interesting, but ultimately it is still FFIV with a more verbose plot, better graphics, and some other minor improvements.
  • Advance Wars DS has a RPG-ish leveling system, but it is effectively “boundless” (i.e. you can “grind” on stages outside of the campaign).  It’s a cool system, skill-based and all, but the later COs are impossible to keep up with your originals.

I have, since getting back, started in on Grandia II for the first time.  As it stands, it is so far beyond the first game, both in terms of characters and situations, that I’m really enjoying it.  Some of the subplots are really well done – one in particular was highly depressing (something that I so rarely see, but I’ve always enjoyed – I don’t see why stories always need to be happy).  I have been told that the battle system will become less enjoyable, but honestly – every so often, it’s fun to play a game that tries to do cliches well, instead of tripping all over itself trying to avoid cliche.

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