Gender: None specified
Rank: Ace Attorney
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 4:01 am
Because I played it, hated it, and proceeded to give my usual inflammatory opinion.
However because I like you Hatman, I will post an objective (as objective as it gets) review I wrote on it ages ago.
Okay, our premise is that we are a high school student who can summon Persona, by shooting ourself in the head. Simple enough.
Before I go any further, I'd like to make note of the fact that I cannot read even a single word of Japanese, so all plot intricacies, dialogue, etc. is lost on me. I talk to khalahaley from GameFAQs regularly though, and he's told me basically what the plot is, some terms, etc.
Okay. In the morning, it's school. The game sends you there, and when at school you can choose to answer questions, go to sleep during class, et cetera. This increases stats. After school you can do club stuff, go out, or do shopping or karaoke which also increases stats.
Time passes when an event happens. As long as you don't trigger that event you're free to wander and do whatever you want in that time. When you reach home, it becomes night, where you can talk to the teammates and such.
After night, it's the shadow time. It's actually more like Shadow Time, so I'll call it that. When in Shadow Time, the school turns into a big (really big) tower, which is the game's only dungeon. It's randomized and there are teleporters every few floors so you don't have to climb up 100000000 floors of dungeon in one night. Normal people also turn into coffins and don't realize there's a Shadow Time. Some people are immune to the coffin-dizing, and those are also the people who have the potential to summon Personas.
Now, when you explore the dungeon you can take along your classmates. One of the cool things about this is they don't all merge into the protagonist's body, but you can see them surround you. You can also tell them to scatter and explore the dungeon on their own, but you naturally won't have them to help you in battle.
In battle, you can't give direct orders to your teammates - it's done through AI presets, à la Dragon Quest Monsters, Tales, and such. Attack main chara's target, Heal, Defense, et cetera. Anyway, battles take place in what's sort of like the press turn system from Shin Megami Tensei 3 and Digital Devil Saga. It's best described as "invisible kinda press turn".
Each character has one chance basically, but say one enemy's weak to fire. You cast fire at it, and it goes into down mode. When it's down, you get another chance. But even if you attack it with fire again that's it. So if there's three enemies weak to fire, three extra chances is all you get until the enemy's normal again. Also, when all the enemies are down, you can do a team attack, which uses up no "kinda press turns", no HP/SP or anything, it's just a free action for getting all enemies down. It's just all the characters jumping in and hitting the monsters, and it does lots of damage. There's also the mix raids, Persona combination attacks, but I haven't done any.
Your character by himself can only attack. To use skills, he has to "equip" a Persona. In that respect, it's a lot like Pokémon. Say you have Persona A with Dia, and Persona B with Agi. If you want to heal, you have to equip Persona A, and if you want to cast fire, you have to equip Persona B.
Another thing is, your teammates can get tired while exploring. I'm not kidding. You'll be wandering in the dungeon, and suddenly one of them will go "I'm hungry." You can then let them go home or not. You can't explore by yourself, so if all of your team goes home you have to as well, but if you work them too hard then they'll fall sick - and you can't explore until they're better. There is one time when you can explore all you want, and that's during full moon - but that's still just once a month.
Some minor things:
- On the world map, you don't move - you select a place to go à la Suikoden III.
- The prevalence of the school bits might cause some people to consider the main game a school sim, and the dungeon a fancy extra.
- As if it isn't already easy enough, there's only Easy and Normal mode. This is in stark contrast to SMT3, which has Normal and DEATH. There might be a Hard mode after you beat the game, but I haven't.
- There's English songs playing all the time. Like that song from the trailer, that sort of song, all the time.
- It'd be really easy to kill the Persona summoners by switching their gunshapedthing with a real gun. "OH LOOK A SHADOW LET'S KILL IT" *bang*
Basic rundown of the plot:
There are these creatures that come out in the Shadow Time called (take a wild guess) Shadows (!!!) who like to eat peoples' brains and make the people dumb. You have to find out why they exist, why there's a Shadow Time, why do they come out of the dungeon, et cetera.
Bottom line, I'd say rent before buying. Different people will find different aspects of the game enjoyable, some won't like it at all, whatever. Persona(lol)lly, I'm going to buy it because it's needed for the collection, but I won't be finishing the game.