Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread - http://www.mmcafe.com/ Forums


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Gojira
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"Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 08:32post reply

I finally bought Shadow Hearts 2 recently because I totally forgot about it when it was released for some reason. And wow that fake ring challenge really pissed me off. I nearly tossed a 60lb weight at my TV over it. Twice.

Anyway this has nothing to do with that, I just wanted to ask some random questions about SH-related topics.

First, can someone refresh my memory as to what happened with Lt. Col. Kawashima in SH1? It's been almost 3 years since I played the game now.

Second, didn't SH3 just come out in Japan? Has anyone played it yet?






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Pollyanna
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"Re(1):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 09:29post reply

quote:

Second, didn't SH3 just come out in Japan? Has anyone played it yet?



YESYESYES. Shadow Hearts 3 is AMAZING so far. I may lose interest in it as I did with the first two, but the cast of characters is the best I've ever seen.

Well, I mean, Johnny is nothing special, and as I said in another topic, Shania is characterized by taking her clothes off all the time (and Natan is just boring), but then you've got Frank.

Frank looks like "the president" looks in any Japanese depiction of America...but he's not the president, he's a ninja. A ninja who trained in BRAZIL and has a giant oni mask on his chest. GIANT. As if that wasn't good enough, each of his weapons has a "special meaning" to him and he acquires them by sticking random blunt objects on the end of a sword hilt (bus stop signs, giant cacti, etc). But the best -best- part of Frank is that his Japanese is TERRIBLE. He has the worst American accent I've ever heard. Sometimes I can't understand a damned word he's saying because his pronounciation is so poor. As a result, literally everything he says is funny.

Frank is enough to make the game great, but then you get Mao, who is a giant talking cat (who sounds like a drag queen) that happens to be a mob boss that fights with drunken fist Kung Fu (she's also Frank's "master").

Ah, and then there's Ricardo Gomez, the ultra-smooth mariachi guy who fights with a machinegun/rocket launcher acoustic guitar.

Aaaaand...well,I don't want to spoil anything about Hilda, because you don't see her "other form" in the opening and it's quite funny. she'd be my favorite character if her voice wasn't so irritating.

It's an amazing team. The music is also quite excellent, though I can see myself quitting early do to lack of interest in the plot, which like the team, barely holds itself together even by the most vague of logic.





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"Re(2):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 13:58post reply

Wow.

I was never a fan of SH but from your character descriptions...
ROMANCING SAGA HAS A CHALLENGER FOR MY SHELF SPACE NOW.





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腎臓混じりの甘口カレー!
膵臓仕込みのペスカトーレ!
愛しの愛しのサイコホラー

Fygee
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"Re(3):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 15:40post reply

I can't wait for the game to hit stateside. Hurry up Midway and announce something!

Does anyone have any sound rips from the game? I don't wait to wait until the end of the month for the OST. :P





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"Re(2):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 16:18post reply

quote:

Second, didn't SH3 just come out in Japan? Has anyone played it yet?


YESYESYES. Shadow Hearts 3 is AMAZING so far. I may lose interest in it as I did with the first two, but the cast of characters is the best I've ever seen.

Well, I mean, Johnny is nothing special, and as I said in another topic, Shania is characterized by taking her clothes off all the time (and Natan is just boring), but then you've got Frank.

Frank looks like "the president" looks in any Japanese depiction of America...but he's not the president, he's a ninja. A ninja who trained in BRAZIL and has a giant oni mask on his chest. GIANT. As if that wasn't good enough, each of his weapons has a "special meaning" to him and he acquires them by sticking random blunt objects on the end of a sword hilt (bus stop signs, giant cacti, etc). But the best -best- part of Frank is that his Japanese is TERRIBLE. He has the worst American accent I've ever heard. Sometimes I can't understand a damned word he's saying because his pronounciation is so poor. As a result, literally everything he says is funny.

Frank is enough to make the game great, but then you get Mao, who is a giant talking cat (who sounds like a drag queen) that happens to be a mob boss that fights with drunken fist Kung Fu (she's also Frank's "master").

Ah, and then there's Ricardo Gomez, the ultra-smooth mariachi guy who fights with a machinegun/rocket launcher acoustic guitar.

Aaaaand...well,I don't want to spoil anything about Hilda, because you don't see her "other form" in the opening and it's quite funny. she'd be my favorite character if her voice wasn't so irritating.

It's an amazing team. The music is also quite excellent, though I can see myself quitting early do to lack of interest in the plot, which like the team, barely holds itself together even by the most vague of logic.



See, the people that make Shadow Hearts are so obviously better at making off-the-wall comedy than they are at making a grand, serious, self-important plot that I wonder why they even bother with the serious plot part.

It's not just that the comedy is better... it's that their "serious plotting" and "serious characterization" bits often suck, straight up.





Gojira
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"Re(3):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 17:52:post reply

quote:

It's not just that the comedy is better... it's that their "serious plotting" and "serious characterization" bits often suck, straight up.



Comedy alone can't make a story move, unfortunately. Sometimes drama is just there to give rise to new situations. Also it provides suitable contrast to whimsy, a.k.a. the straight man concept.

EDIT: After that description I had to try and find some samples, and wow Polly wasn't kidding. Check out the voices on the official site. See if you can guess which one is Frank without reading.





[this message was edited by Gojira on Thu 4 Aug 18:07]

Iggy
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"Re(4):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 19:43post reply

About the music : is Itoken also working on this one ?





Pollyanna
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"Re(4):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 19:50:post reply

The plot in SH3 is really poor. The characters have little reason to be together and no interesting motivation to do anything. The events are only loosely connected and there's no legitimate drama whatsoever.

However...the individual situations, in themselves, are quite enjoyable, as are the characters. The big exception is Shania, who I absolutely can't stand. Not only is she skanky-looking (not reason enough to hate a character), she takes her clothes off ALL THE TIME (some of you might like that, but not me) and she's just...BORING. She's a totally bland serious character in a world of completely insane fucked up weirdos and she has NO REACTION to it. Johnny, who is...somewhat normal has comical, somewhat believable reactions to things, but Shania is just in the wrong game...and the game she's from sucks ass.

So I agree that the SH writers can't create legitimate drama (or haven't in the past), as I gave up SH 1 and 2 because the plot totally failed to keep my interest. It's a catch 22, because I complain when there's (out of place/poorly written) drama, but I quit the game if it doesn't have any.

SO, what I can hope for in SH3 is a story that has interesting twists and developments, but fun ones that fit with the world and characters. If they try to give me real emotional drama that's not the least bit tongue-in-cheek (especially if it involves Shania) it'll just irritate me. I'm not saying the game can't have romance or tragedy or whatever they want, they just can't pretend like I'm suddenly going to go for melodrama.



And to answer Iggy's question: I think so. I don't know the Kanji for his name, but it's the same as the SH2 composer. It's a good soundtrack...especially the opening (which I watch every time) and the song it plays when Frank gets a new weapon. Also, Ricardo's short little guitar songs are nice.





[this message was edited by Pollyanna on Thu 4 Aug 20:00]

Iggy
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"Re(5):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 20:05post reply

As far as drama does, I think the SH1 one was not totally unbearable... For a mundane japanese RPG, I think it was just enough. Most of all, it managed to make Alice not revoltingly bothersome for a white priest - damsel in distress-heroin.
Well, I would have shot her in the nose with a bazooka after her first appearance for wearing such a skirt, but I kinda liked her by the end.
But I think the balance between drama and comedy went to the fun side with SH2, or so I've heard.

Was Koudelka funny ? I think I remember a very 1st degree gothopoof game... I couldn't make me play it long enough to find out, so I don't know.





Pollyanna
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"Re(6):Voluntary Shadow Hearts thread" , posted Thu 4 Aug 20:08post reply

-I- thought Koudelka was funny, but in a completely different way than SH. Some of that I attribute to the dub. It was just...weird altogether.

The drama in SH1 didn't make me sick, but it also didn't interest me at all. SH2, from what I played, was much MUCH goofier, but you'd have to ask someone else if it gets serious later or not.





KTallguy
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"(ノ△・。)" , posted Thu 4 Aug 23:38post reply

I really really liked SH1's plot. I thought it was perfect... although the characters were kind of off at times. I really got into Uru and Alice's relationship.

I was really looking forward to beating SH2. I had just gotten to the 2nd disc, and there was a cool new character that I met with Blanka, and we were fighting it out in Japan.

So I head towards the next save point, and try to save my game. The save bar freezes. I look at it. I say, eh... maybe it's because it's a new disc, it's taking a while... and go eat dinner. I come back, it's the same. ... the PS2 won't turn off manually... I have to use the power switch in the back.

I turn it back on and boot up the game, and lo and behold, my save file is corrupted... =(

I guess I'll never find out what happens to Uru and crew, but honestly the game wasn't very engrossing. The serious bits were kind of cheesy and I did like some of the characters (esp that new one, damn it), but it didn't hold my interest like other games. I actually stopped playing for a few months and then started up again, which is strange for me, I always play RPGs straight through.

Gripes about SH2: The dungeons are long and repetitive. The battle system really gets slow and boring after a while. Story bits are a little long winded and although Uru is very well voice acted, he can't carry the whole game. The sense of purpose wasn't really there in the first disc at all, even at the end I was kind of underwhelmed.

Good things about SH2: Some of the characters are nice =) I like Uru and Maria... although Maria is annoying in the cutscenes. I like Blanka's weapons. Battles are entertaining, the ring system is quite smart.

I wish the battles had more strategy to them though... really all you do is power up your characters (or not), and hit them with your strongest moves, or combos, or whatever. It's rare that you have to use any kind of special elements on enemies... you kind of just throw your strongest stuff at it and it dies. I guess that's all RPGs though... =P

Damn save file... I guess I'll just continue trying to beat Killer 7 (the fricking craziest game ever) so I can go read the spoiler thread... damn power rangers...

Why are they called the Handsome Men if two of them are girls?





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Iggy
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"Re(1):(ノ△・。)" , posted Fri 5 Aug 00:29post reply

quote:
I wish the battles had more strategy to them though... really all you do is power up your characters (or not), and hit them with your strongest moves, or combos, or whatever. It's rare that you have to use any kind of special elements on enemies... you kind of just throw your strongest stuff at it and it dies. I guess that's all RPGs though... =P

All RPGs excepty Saga-s...





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"Re(2):(ノ△・。)" , posted Fri 5 Aug 00:42post reply

quote:

All RPGs excepty Saga-s...



good point, I need to get into one of those.





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Ishmael
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"Re(3):(ノ△・。)" , posted Fri 5 Aug 03:57post reply

Nuts, fooling around with that judgment ring thing in SH1 finally drove me away from the game but Pollyanna's description of the characters may get me to give the series another shot.





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"Re(2):(ノ△・。)" , posted Fri 5 Aug 05:44post reply

quote:
I wish the battles had more strategy to them though... really all you do is power up your characters (or not), and hit them with your strongest moves, or combos, or whatever. It's rare that you have to use any kind of special elements on enemies... you kind of just throw your strongest stuff at it and it dies. I guess that's all RPGs though... =P
All RPGs excepty Saga-s...



That's what SRPGs are for.





/ / /

Pollyanna
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"Re(3):(ノ△・。)" , posted Fri 5 Aug 06:16post reply

I'm not going to argue about which RPGs have fights that make you use strategy and which don't. Instead, I'll say that I feel that every system in SH (3 at least) is good and well-implemented, but not especially fun.

Even games that have great systems that I love usually have something irritating about them, but SH3 manages to have a large collection of systems that I neither enjoy, nor are irritated about. I like that the ring system makes me actually pay attention in battles, but I don't enjoy the rings in themselves. I like how combos give me something more to do than just attack, but it's not like they look good, require any particular strategy, or are the least bit fun to do. I don't like the spell system, either, but there's nothing wrong with it.

I like how the game has a unique way for all the characters to get their new skills (which all result in a hidden dungeon if you finish the quests...I think) and I like how you have something new and optional to do after every maze, rather than crowding all the extra stuff at the end. I don't especially enjoy any of the sidequests, though. They're just OK.

Oh...you are also highly dependant on items randomly scattered in hidden treasure chests/background spots, which isn't especially fun it itself, but gives you motivation to explore and beats the hell out of a huge world full of nothing.

The one thing I really really like about SH is that the encounter rate is low and the battles take a while. If they actually requires much strategy, it would be really great. As it is, it ends up like the rest of the systems in SH...good, but nothing exciting.

I'm not complaining, though. Most games have things really wrong with them on some level. It's just strange to play a game with nothing wrong, but nothing spectacular.