That’s right, the mailbag has returned! Since I can’t think of anything witty to kick this off, let’s just get straight to the letters portion of the show.
Hi, VGR Folks!
The shelf of unfinished games I have is longer than my arms. Classic PS1 RPGs. PS2 Epics. The list is too long to name. The games seem to fall into four categories:
Games I set aside because something newer or more interesting came along
Games I quit playing because I hit a boss monster that was impossible to beat
Games I quit playing because I took up WOW and intend to go back to but never do
and, lastly, Games that are unplayable
Some of the First Variety: Phantom Brave, Legalia 2, All 3 Shadow Hearts games
Fun games but not fun enough to play to the end when something bettter comes along.
Some of the Second Variety: Star Ocean Second Story, Star Ocean 3, Grandia 3, Dragon Quest VIII
This sort of game really annoys me because I know that in most cases, the level of difficulty was ramped up for the U.S. versions. Insanely difficult I can buy into. Impossible to Beat I find aggravating. The worst of these type was Star Ocean SS where, upon entering the final tower in the second half of the game, you run into three sub bosses who can hit your all of your characters six times for every one of your moves (not for every turn – for every move of each character each turn) and the only way to beat them is to have equipped some useless
(up until then) items called bunny slippers to speed your characters up. The trick is that these items are not available anywhere in the second disk. You had to acquire them early in the game and keep them in your inventory. Grrrr.
Some of the Third Variety: Final Fantasy XII, Ar Tonellico, Psychonauts, Oden Sphere, Persona 3, Wild Arms 5
My current favorites right now are Persona 3 and Wild Arms 5. I will
ever go back to them if WOW ever releases my soul.
Some of the Fourth Variety – happily, the list of buggy, unplayable games was a short one. Unhappily, these games were highly regarded by many but I was unable to play or finish them because of glitches in the game.
Dark Cloud 2: At one point, you have to go into a dungeon/cave and have an encounter to advance the game. At the point where you click on a dialog box, the game locks up. The only way to advance beyond this point is to beat the boss but NOT click on the dialog box… save the
game and quit. Then start it up again, load the save, and skip the cinematics that come next. No, the disk was not scratched or damaged. It was a fatal bug in the software code.
Valkarie Profile 2: This is the first time Squeenix ever dropped an unplayable turd in my Playstation 2! The game locks up part way through playing the tutorial. What a pity.
The above are just a sampling. I have a bookcase full of unfinished RPGs.
I have found that several things are getting in the way of my RPGing – World of Warcraft being the major time-waster. I find I really like playing with other gamers on the other end of the mouse so much that console RPGs seem rather bland. Second, I will be 52 this summer and are greatly aware that I have fewer years ahead than I have behind. And I find I am losing patience with 140+ hour epic games. Lastly, having become a homeowner, I find that real life keeps intruding on my gaming time with annoying frequency. For example, right now my cats are clawing on my legs because I am typing this instead of feeding them.
My best to you all,
What’s up CS? You pretty much hit the nail on the head for me–World of Warcraft has killed a lot of my console gaming ventures. Hell, forget not finishing games. There are several brought up in today’s mailbag that I haven’t even started because of WoW’s siren song. Why bore myself stupid with Final Fantasy XII for 90 hours when I can bore myself stupid in Outlands and have virtual company doing so?
There’s a reason I roll with the DS more these days: I can check in on my town in Animal Crossing, or try and get a gold medal and win Cooking Mama’s starry-eyed approval, while I fly halfway across a continent to make a raid. Multitasking.
CS, I got about a third of the way into your email, then my eyes crossed and I needed to have a drink and a lie-down. Suffice it to say, you have a lot of games you’ve never finished. Well, that’s something I can certainly relate to. Maybe it’s all the drinking and lie-downs that’s doing it. Perhaps when “Intervention: The Game” comes to market, I’ll be cured for good. Oh, who are we kidding? I won’t finish that one either.