Thursday, March 29, 2012


The Xbox 360 still works. I tried a game called Record of Argarest War. I'll be returning it tomorrow because it isn't very good. It's a strategy RPG ala Final Fantasy Tactics. It tried to do something different and had some good ideas, but the implementation sucked.

Combat is boring, which is a fairly important part of a strategy RPG. Argarest attempted to implement a system where positioning your characters in a certain way would allow you to perform powerful combo attacks. The problem is their implementation removed any and all relevance of strategic movement or positioning from combat. Battlefields are extremely small and perfectly flat, combo attacks essentially have infinite range and automatically move characters where they need to be at no expense, and movement happens simultaneously with the enemy so you can't really react to how they move. The result is that you just position your guys for combo attacks, let the enemies fall where they may, and then just kill everything that came in range.

The game also looks surprisingly dated. Its graphics are, to be honest, only slightly better than the original Final Fantasy Tactics. Considering we're two console generations removed from that landmark title it's odd that the production values would be so surprisingly low. In many ways Final Fantasy Tactics actually looked better, since it didn't recycle the same battlefield every time you fought in a forest.

The story concept is novel, but it isn't good enough to carry uninteresting gameplay. Supposedly it's an 80 hour title spanning five generations of characters (descendants of the first character you play and your choice of various female heroines you encounter along the way), but as considered the countless hours ahead of me I quickly lost interest.

So I title this post with a clever (not really) pun and declare this game "meh".

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