Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 21st Jan 2009 22:22 UTC
Games After our article on modern gaming a while ago, we decided to dive futher into gaming. That's why I met up with one of my friends, and asked him if he could loan me the best game he had for his XBox 360. Maybe I should have been a bit more specific, I thought, because when he came over, before I knew it, he shoved a Japanese RPG in my console. This would be my first foray into the strange, magical, and disturbed world of the Japanese RPG. Read on for a review of Lost Odyssey.
Order by: Score:
Perfect summary of most JRPGs
by dagw on Wed 21st Jan 2009 22:53 UTC
dagw
Member since:
2005-07-06

Horribly flawed, yet strangely compelling.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Perfect summary of most JRPGs
by judgen on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 10:08 UTC in reply to "Perfect summary of most JRPGs"
judgen Member since:
2006-07-12

Rather interesting that only one single game on the xbox360 is in the top 100 best selling games 2008 in japan (worlds biggest console video game market). And that particular game happens to be just one of those rpgĀ“s. "Tales of Vesperia"

reference: http://kotaku.com/5135987/only-one-xbox-360-game-made-top-100-selle...

Reply Score: 2

Old game,new looks
by _txf_ on Wed 21st Jan 2009 23:03 UTC
_txf_
Member since:
2008-03-17

I haven't played lost Odyssey, but to me it looked like an old style jrpg prettified.

I mean random encounters are total crap. They are acceptable in a portable game for ds or psp that cannot handle the load, but on a powerful console it is simply dated. Square has pretty much abandoned it, and for the better. Also combat seemed to "menuified", comparing to say ff12. On all jrpgs there is a certain level of grind expected but Gambits allowed me to lazily cruise while grinding and made the whole process a lot more enjoyable. Plus battle intro animations suck - they waste too much time.

Whilst some don't like the fact that ff12 was evolving, I did. I also hope that ff13 is a further evolution. This seems a bit retro and stuck to the old ways, which frankly, I've grown out of.

I don't even know why I writing this, I will never play this game as I don't own an xbox360

Reply Score: 3

combat
by klauthor on Wed 21st Jan 2009 23:09 UTC
klauthor
Member since:
2008-05-02

"turn-based combat in and of itself is already a total antidote to immersion"

You never played Wizardry 7 back then, did you?

Reply Score: 1

RE: combat
by SReilly on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 15:42 UTC in reply to "combat"
SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

...or the X-COM series.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: combat
by miles on Fri 23rd Jan 2009 16:33 UTC in reply to "RE: combat"
miles Member since:
2006-06-15

Well, the X-COM series had a strategy aspect, and thus the turn-based gameplay was compelling. In other hand, all turn based JRPG can be won without using a single brain cell, which make is an amazingly boring choice.

Reply Score: 2

Game Review
by airwedge1 on Wed 21st Jan 2009 23:22 UTC
airwedge1
Member since:
2006-02-22

I don't know about any body else, but I don't care to see game reviews on a site about operating systems, and software. Lets leave the gaming stuff to the gaming websites.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Game Review
by Bobthearch on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 00:10 UTC in reply to "Game Review"
Bobthearch Member since:
2006-01-27

I wouldn't mind too much if kept to Page 2 - good entertaining fluff filler.

Reply Score: 3

Agree on most of it..
by Extreme Coder on Wed 21st Jan 2009 23:26 UTC
Extreme Coder
Member since:
2007-07-26

As much as I like JRPGs, atleast the ones that aren't cliche-ridden with emo characters, world-saving stuff, and all that boring routine, I agree generally with you Thom.
I played Lost Odyssey on a friend's 360, and I really didn't like it. More like, hated it. One of the main reasons was the random-encounters.
IMO, the best 2 JRPGs so far on the 360 are Tales of Vesperia and Eternal Sonata. Atleast no random encounters ;) , but they don't really come close to something like Fallout 3 ;)

Damn it, what's wrong with my English today?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Agree on most of it..
by StephenBeDoper on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 01:34 UTC in reply to "Agree on most of it.."
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

As much as I like JRPGs, atleast the ones that aren't cliche-ridden with emo characters, world-saving stuff, and all that boring routine


Don't forget the endless, banal "insights" into human nature, life, the universe, and everything.

Reply Score: 2

Grandia?
by bnolsen on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 00:07 UTC
bnolsen
Member since:
2006-01-06

I really loved Grandia 2 on dreamcast. No random encouters. I LOVED the combat system which had this sliding initiative bar with each character having their own time to select an action and time to perform an action. If you timed it just right you could hit an enemy while he's trying to perform and knock him back down the scale. Yeah, it was turn based but I like to be able to play rpg's without being hurried.

Edited 2009-01-22 00:07 UTC

Reply Score: 2

why i stopped playing it
by stabbyjones on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 00:13 UTC
stabbyjones
Member since:
2008-04-15

me-"yeah man you can come around. i'm just sitting around playing lost odyssey."

campo-"cool, we'll be around in a bit"

me-"woah i'm just fighting this giant thing in an ice cave! holy crap this game is really starting to pick up! you gotta see it."

*40mins later*

campo-"hey man what are you up to?"

me-"well, i'm currently a 10yr old girl collecting flowers for my mothers funeral...... it was awesome just before i swear!"

jrpgs have this awesome idea that they have to fill games with collection quests and cute crap. also the fact that the only time you hear people speaking is in cutscenes really sucks.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by anduril
by anduril on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 00:18 UTC
anduril
Member since:
2005-11-11

I actually didn't mind the random encounters all that much and at times preferred the linear gameplay (compared to say oblivion where its so easy to just get lost or overwhelmed in all the choice you have) but the amount of overly long cutscenes got on my nerves (and literally every 15mins there was a cut scene) and how messed up boss battles were. If I didn't have gamefaqs open on the laptop I would have played quite a few of them endlessly.

Having said that...the "dreams" really were an unexpected treat. The first one the g/f and I skipped over (we play RPGs together swapping the controller) and after that we watched/read every one. Some were extremely touching and the most endearing part of the game. Never made it past the 2nd disk though

Reply Score: 1

Interesting
by holizz on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 00:29 UTC
holizz
Member since:
2006-08-21

Interesting to read a review of a JRPG by somebody who doesn't like them. I must say that I haven't played the game itself, but I watched a friend play a lot of it.

It seems that your likes and dislikes are in complete opposition to mine - I enjoy turn-based gameplay because it gives me time to construct elaborate strategies. And the thing I dislike most about JRPGs is the long sections of story. Me and my friend took particular dislike to the dream sequences in that game.

Your points are certainly valid, but I think the game was designed to be in that classic JRPG style and so they probably made some decisions to stick to the old way of doing things for the benefit of fans rather than making drastic changes to appeal to non-fans, like some of the changes in FFXII.

Also, I agree with airwedge1, I really don't know what this review is doing here. It was interesting, but seems inappropriate in this context.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by neowolf
by neowolf on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 01:23 UTC
neowolf
Member since:
2005-07-06

I've never really understood people that review genres of games they don't like in the first place. Though even more so I don't know why I'm seeing one here?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by neowolf
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 01:27 UTC in reply to "Comment by neowolf"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

OSNews readers play games. OSNews wants to service its readers. I like playing games. Do the math.

If you don't like an item, don't comment.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by neowolf
by Michael on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 01:31 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by neowolf"
Michael Member since:
2005-07-01

Fair enough but pick a more interesting game next time eh? And try to say something that hasn't been said in a million other places on the Internet. Game reviewing is a very crowded field.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by neowolf
by weildish on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 05:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by neowolf"
weildish Member since:
2008-12-06

I agree with Thom here. Though relatively new to OSNews, it's not a secret to me that a good chunk of those who work with operating systems, computers, and technology in general will also be attracted to video games, hence the review in order to appeal to these people-- notice it's just one review... not a sudden barrage of not-so-related content. It does seem to be more of a Page 2 item to me, however, but who am I to question?

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by neowolf
by ari-free on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 06:36 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by neowolf"
ari-free Member since:
2007-01-22

"I like playing games"

after this review and "The crippled world of modern gaming" I'd like to see a review of a game that you actually like ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by neowolf
by David on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 09:01 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by neowolf"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

We hereby promise to put the words "Game Review" or somesuch into the title of any game review on this site so the on-topic police can avoid reading them.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by neowolf
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 09:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by neowolf"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

We hereby promise to put the words "Game Review" or somesuch into the title of any game review on this site so the on-topic police can avoid reading them.


Yes, that's exactly why I didn't use the tagging system, but just put "Game Review" in the title. I don't believe tags make it to the RSS feed.

"On-topic police". Now that's a keeper.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by neowolf
by memson on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 11:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by neowolf"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

Thom, you're no Zero Punctuation. Leave it up to the pros, dude.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by neowolf
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 11:43 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by neowolf"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Thom, you're no Zero Punctuation. Leave it up to the pros, dude.


Of course I'm not. Who ever said I was? Just because I'm not as entertaining as Yahtzee, I'm somehow not entitled to write game reviews?

Yahtzee is entertainment, and he's pretty damn good at it. However, I want my game reviews to actually be useful.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by neowolf
by Narishma on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 12:05 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by neowolf"
Narishma Member since:
2005-07-06

There's no such thing as a usefull game review, since it's only the opinion of one guy. Unless you have exactly the same experiences and tastes of the reviewer.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by neowolf
by dagw on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 12:21 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by neowolf"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

Well written reviews are always useful no matter if your tastes lines up with the reviewer or not. A good reviewer not only says whether he likes something or not, but also why. I have no problem reading a well written review where the reviewer is claiming that a game is the best he's played all year and at the same time conclude that I'll probably not like the game.

A well written review should give you enough basis to make your own informed decision about a product, no matter what the reviewer thought of the product.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by neowolf
by wanderingk88 on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 12:48 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by neowolf"
wanderingk88 Member since:
2008-06-26

The only well-written reviews I've seen are the ones on insomna.ac. Most New Game Journalists hate Alex Kierkegaard because he's got a pompous attitude and has a rather harsh and direct use of language, but IMO he's one of the only good reviewers around.

The rest is all crap. New Game Journalists' reviews suck, and this review is not an exception. Alex at least understands what games are and how is one supposed to review them. This reads more like an opinion on JRPGs than a game review (and Alex would tell you straight away how reviewing across genres makes no sense at all).

Edited 2009-01-22 12:50 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Comment by neowolf
by Novan_Leon on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 22:00 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by neowolf"
Novan_Leon Member since:
2005-12-07

The best game reviews that I've read/watched are from GameTrailers.com. Their video reviews are second to none.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Comment by neowolf
by memson on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 12:39 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by neowolf"
memson Member since:
2006-01-01

Yahtzee is entertainment, and he's pretty damn good at it. However, I want my game reviews to actually be useful.


Not wishing to start a poinless argument, I'll not go on about it, except to say: Yahtzee is pretty much on the money when he reviews a game.

Reply Score: 2

Err, Genre Review?
by saynte on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 01:30 UTC
saynte
Member since:
2007-12-10

This is pretty standard stuff for this genre of game. Complaining about these elements is like complaining about all the shooting and dodging in a FPS.

More valid criticisms followed, but that first page is pretty well a write-off as far as a game review goes.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Bill Shooter of Bul
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 04:30 UTC
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

Or, if you have no friends, buy the game, learn to count to ten, get an umbrella for the pile of shit coming your way, and, well, sweet dreams, buddy.

....

Please note that if you are interested in buying this item, you could opt to buy it from the OSNews Store at Amazon (direct product link). Prices are the same as in the normal Amazon online store, but by buying through the OSNews Store you support OSNews financially. Thank you!


To paraphrase "This game sucks, please buy it from us!" Maybe you should review things you like Thom. Then maybe we can support OSNews.

Reply Score: 2

The game is not for you!
by Hussein on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 07:49 UTC
Hussein
Member since:
2008-11-22

I love Lost Odyssey, I think it is one of the best JRPGs, if not the best, of the current generation. Then again I am a JRPG addict and can't tolerate playing anything else.

Reply Score: 1

jRPGs
by Ultimatebadass on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 09:08 UTC
Ultimatebadass
Member since:
2006-01-08

I do enjoyed Lost Odyssey, especialy for the good background stories (the dreams) but the boring combat system kind of ruined it - I have to say that Eternal Sonata was better overall, despite its relative shortness.

PS. For me, Final Fantasy VII is THE BEST the jrpg genre has to offer to this date. And yes, these games in general - either you love them or you hate them ;)

Reply Score: 1

It would have been better for your friend
by werpu on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 09:23 UTC
werpu
Member since:
2006-01-18

To recommend you Mass Effect...
Way better RPG than most of the Japanese RPGs!

Reply Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

To recommend you Mass Effect...


Already played, finished, and thoroughly enjoyed Mass Effect. On my blog, I named it my best game of 2008.

http://cogscanthink.blogsome.com/2008/12/29/mass-effect/

Thanks for recommending it though ;) .

Reply Score: 1

Omikron
by righard on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 12:09 UTC
righard
Member since:
2007-12-26

The same feeling Thom has with Lost Odyssey, I have with Omikron. If I would have to give that game a score, It would be 4/10. It is one of my most favorite games ever though, just because of the great 'feel'.

Reply Score: 1

?
by Novan_Leon on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 21:59 UTC
Novan_Leon
Member since:
2005-12-07

Honestly, it sounds like the reviewer just doesn't like JRPG's. Things like "random encounters", "turn based combat", "enemies that dodge certain magical attacks", all things that he refers to as negatives are typical of the JRPG genre. It's like me doing a review of a FPS like CoD4 and complaining that it's too fast paced and intense.

If you don't like JRPG's, your review of a JRPG is most likely going to be negative, and hence, useless to your readers.

Reply Score: 1

Terrible Review
by Alboin on Thu 22nd Jan 2009 22:36 UTC
Alboin
Member since:
2007-10-17

How can you say ALL JPRG's are bad just because this one is? It's an entire genre, and this certain game is linear. Pick up a copy of Dragon Warrior 7 and write a review for that. I mean, that game is just ridiculously epic.

What I'm saying is: give the genre a chance.

Reply Score: 1

Great game
by andrewclear on Fri 23rd Jan 2009 17:05 UTC
andrewclear
Member since:
2006-08-15

I love this game. It is my favorite game on the 360 (followed by Mass Effect, then Fallout 3). The writer of this article didn't really review this game, he actually critiqued it. Everyone doesn't like the same style of games (I myself despise First Person Shooters). When a JRPG fan goes to play a JRPG, it's for the story. It's not for fast action gameplay.

I find a problem with this article, cause it's the writer's first JRPG (or so he claims), and it shows. I didn't have the "pixel" problem that he had. The platforming is rather easy as well. The random encounters are just a throw back to the old JRPG style. The man behind the game is the creator of the first 10 Final Fantasy's, and he said he wanted to make the best traditional JRPG. Hence, the random encounters and a lot of other traditional JRPG mechanics.

The game is beautiful, and the story is compelling. It's not just "Hey let's go save the world," there is a lot of drama in this game. There is more emphasis on emotions than any other game I ever played. Granted, the 2 kids in the story annoy the hell out of me, but, sometimes they served their purpose well.

And, anyone that wants to complain about fetch quests, and claim that Fallout 3 is great...well...you are simply retarded. Fallout 3 is nothing more than a ton of fetch quests (or...go to point a and and examine it).

I'd recommend this game to anyone for the story alone. Sure, it doesn't have the open ended freedom of Fallout 3, but, Fallout 3's story can't compare to the depth of Lost Odyssey's.

Reply Score: 1