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Thread: Summon Night: Swordcraft Story

  1. Summon Night: Swordcraft Story

    Quote Originally Posted by Finch
    RedCo, you should make a Summon Night Swordcraft thread so i don't have to.
    Well, in case anyone missed it, my good "friend" Finch has been giving me a hard time lately, claiming that I'm cranky about every single thing I play. It didn't stop there, either. Now he's blackmailing me to start a thread to talk about this wonderful game. So if I gush too much, blame him. kthx

    The Summon Night series originally began as a strategy-RPG developed by Flight Plan and published by Banpresto in Japan in January 2000. FP followed up with sequels SN2 & 3 on PS1 and PS2, respectively. Between getting caught up with SRPGs from Red Entertainment and Nippon Ichi, I imported SN3 in the summer '04 only to find its gameplay relatively bland despite the cute 2D graphics and polished presentation. Fast forwarding another year, I tried out FP's action-RPG spin-off, subtitled EX Thesis. At E3 '06--one year after I posted some impressions for EX on Atlus' forum--they coincidentally (or not ) announced two of the three GBA games for release in US this summer and fall.

    Like EX, SN: Swordcraft Story 1 (released on July 25) and 2 (due out Oct 3) are action-RPGs. However, EX is a good 2D Zelda 3 imitation, whereas the latter two would be similar to a dungeon crawler-like take on Namco's Tales series--a fighter mixed with RPG-like level ups. Nevertheless, Flight Plan maintains an overriding theme in the franchise: recruit & summon monsters to do special attacks for massive damage. XD Okay, well, it is fun at least.

    The GBA titles apply a different twist to that formula, making you choose and stick with 1 of 4 summons from start to finish. In SN:SS1, your task is to work your way down a 50-floor labyrinth, occassionally returning to the surface to battle contestants in a tournament (essentially the "bosses"). What is taken away from the gameplay is added to customization of the story, and Atlus' talented localization is highlighted as a result; the story is customized one of 8 ways: whether you play as a boy or girl and who you pick to be your summon. The story branches out further depending on with whom you choose to talk and the way that you respond to their questions. After collecting items in the labyrinth, you can dissect them into 4 raw elements and recreate them as weapons based on recipes that your mentor gives you.

    So what do I think? SN:SS1 is short but sweet. I've finished it twice, clocking out of the main quest at 14:30 and 10:01 in spite of a high encounter rate. The difficulty ramps up after the first dozen hours from easy to fairly tough when tackling 50 extra floors in the bonus dungeon. Aside from the battles, the highlight definitely is the combination of character design and dialogue. The fairy summon "Sugar" is especially valuable in this respect. Determined to marry her master (yes, even if you play as a girl), she becomes the catalyst for hijinks, as the protagonist is forced to make excuses for oogling and developing friendships with photogenic girls (or boys). Overall, SN:SS1 is an above-average buy. Recommended.

    If you haven't preordered but are interested in finding it in stock, enter your zip code to check for store availability. If you decide you like it, give SN:SS2 a shot on Oct 3 and/or ask Atlus for SN:SS Monogatari: Hajimari no Ishi (released last winter for GBA) or SN4 (due out this Nov on J-PS2).

    Disclosure: Some excerpts of this post were cut and paste from my opinions posted at other forums. Sorry, old age brings laziness.
    Last edited by RedCoKid; 08 Aug 2006 at 10:39 AM.

  2. I almost bought this yesterday.

    Decided to hold off for Super Robot Wars OG later this week.

    So Atlus still wins.

  3. Quote Originally Posted by Bacon
    I almost bought this yesterday.

    Decided to hold off for Super Robot Wars OG later this week.

    So Atlus still wins.
    You lose, though.

  4. Your maternal progenitor mimics that action.

  5. Summon Night > Super Robot Wars OG.
    WARNING: This post may contain violent and disturbing images.

  6. Thank you, Red. We're like the rivals from every rpg that hate each other but not really. Unless you really hate me. In that case, i get to be the good guy.
    I was going to post a thread as soon as i finish, though given my record, that might never happen. I'm really enjoying it, and it's completely because of the characters and dialogue. Nothing ever gets bad, it's all just a step away from being really good. The different weapons add a lot of strategy to the battles, though after you figure out what to use, it turns into slash slash block, slash slash block, with maybe a jump or two. Every npc has a few lines of entertaining dialogue and it frequently changes, but the house designs are mostly the same, so it gets to be repetitive going and talking to each one. So many little things keep it from being something i could call really really great. It's great, but just pretty great.
    What i really love is how the game seems to have a good sense of humor about itself. It's a game created from love.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bacon
    Your maternal progenitor mimics that action.

  7. i played some of my friends copy and i didn't like it much. the fights didn't seem that great to me. a little boring compared to the fights in the tales series. i'll give it another go 'round sooner or later just felt kinda bland.

  8. I think the fights are slower, though it's partly because of the weapon switching, which works for Summon Nights. It just needed to be tighter, without quite so many fights. There's that item which cuts them down, but i never tried using it.

  9. Quote Originally Posted by Finch
    Thank you, Red. We're like the rivals from every rpg that hate each other but not really. Unless you really hate me. In that case, i get to be the good guy.
    It was all in good fun. So, no, you don't get to be the good guy, unless you want to be like the drunk kitty ninja in Shadow Hearts 3.

  10. This game makes me laugh.

    "I love the knuckle. It's so bad."

    That everyone wants SRT over Summon Night means that there is no justice in this world. You should be getting both.


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