The Return of Talking Time

Go Back   The Return of Talking Time > Talking about media > Talking about television games

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #541  
Old 03-05-2019, 10:32 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

After really limping across the finish line in Untold 2 and being pretty down on it, I jumped right into this and am loving it. This is everything for me that Untold 2 wasn't. I already love my party, even though they are probably too squishy to live. I'll cross that bridge when I get there, but for now they're a lot of fun.

Reply With Quote
  #542  
Old 03-09-2019, 05:33 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by estragon View Post
I already love my party, even though they are probably too squishy to live.
Hmmm, maybe they're not too squishy, at least not so far. They completely demolished the First Stratum boss to the extent that when it was over I was kind of shocked there wasn't another phase. It felt like it went from a pretty hefty health bar into 3 little weenies that went out in one turn. I thought they'd combine again and have a big heal bar but . . . apparently not. They seem to have definitely corrected the tedious HP bloat boss design of Untold 2.

Although having a Sestus with all non-racial skill points in the 3 bind-punches and the [punch-->(up to three random bind punches)] skill obviously really helped against a big rock. He never landed a bind, but it didn't matter. He was doing 3-4 hits of punch-element damage surprisingly often, which is great against rocks in these games.

Last edited by estragon; 03-09-2019 at 05:57 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #543  
Old 03-14-2019, 06:51 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Shocked but happy that after finishing the 2nd stratum a party of Cestus/Reaper in front and Hound (Dog)/Shaman/Warlock in the back was not too squishy after all. Even without a dedicated healer or a real tank beyond the dog occasionally taking hits, having 3 people who can do binds or status ailments pretty much kept the team safe and sound, both in random encounters and boss fights. Again they just demolished the stratum boss on their first go at it.

I expect this will probably just get easier now that master skills make the Shaman closer to being the equivalent of dedicated healer, with passive heals triggering every time anyone gets a buff, gets attacked, or ends a turn with a buff, on top of the Hound's animal therapy passive healing as long as the dog is alive.

I really am digging this party, the dungeons, the design, the events, the atmosphere, and the food system. Everything is great. At the moment it's probably tied with EO3 for my favorite game in the series, unless something goes terribly wrong in the back half.

It feels a little bit on the easy side even on Expert, but after Untold 2's tedious combination of HP bloat and instant death attacks, I'd much rather take slightly easy.
Reply With Quote
  #544  
Old 03-29-2019, 06:16 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Shockingly, that party got through the entire main game just fine! I love it when I can get through an EO game just playing with the party that seems like it will be the most fun to me. If anything, Advance felt a little on the easy side on with this group (Barrage Brawler, Deathbringer Harbringer, Hound Rover, Divine Herald Shaman, Elemancer Warlock).

Nothing in the main game really punishes this party for not having a dedicated tank, because between binds, ailments, the dog as an occasional pseudo-tank with limited command healing, buffs for defense and elemental resistance and and status resistance, passive healing everyone time someone sneezes or looks at you funny, and the warlock's Magic Shield, there was a solution for most anything. No one was a pure healer or tank, but everyone contributed in some way to defense. Some encounters on floors 24 and 25 were a bit touch and go, but . . . that feels about how it should be right before the end of the game.

They died once against 4th stratum boss because it's basically a guaranteed KO if you use shaman and don't look up the pattern in advance, and then once against the 5th stratum boss because I just rushed in blindly once when I got the boss room right before I wanted to go to sleep, to see if they just could finish the game off right then without taking the time/effort to really prepare even though I hadn't really seriously upgraded anything since finishing the 4th stratum. Unsurprisingly it went poorly, but with a little more planning and equipment upgrades it was smooth sailing.

Question: Activity in this thread died down, but did anyone play through the post-game? How was it? I think I've never gotten more than 1 or 2 dragons into an EO postgame before getting annoyed, before but I'm considering trying again with this one. (I think the most likely outcome will still be that I run into an Atlus Postgame Puzzle Boss and give up, though....)
Reply With Quote
  #545  
Old 03-29-2019, 06:23 PM
Kalir's Avatar
Kalir Kalir is online now
I have a Plan
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Utah
Posts: 7,141
Default

I played through the postgame right up until the final postgame boss, where I stalled out.

Which is a shame because the concept of that fight is RAD AS HELL.
Reply With Quote
  #546  
Old 03-29-2019, 06:36 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalir View Post
I played through the postgame right up until the final postgame boss, where I stalled out.

Which is a shame because the concept of that fight is RAD AS HELL.
Could I ask what makes it seem unfair and/or unbeatable for you?

Did it feel like it needed a really specific party configuration, or like you needed to be Level 99 w/Level 99 Retirement Bonuses?
Reply With Quote
  #547  
Old 03-29-2019, 06:39 PM
Kalir's Avatar
Kalir Kalir is online now
I have a Plan
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Utah
Posts: 7,141
Default

I don't thiiiiink you need the retire bonuses? It'd definitely help, though.

The only thing you outright need is a Brouni, really. Beyond that, you could probably manage it with most any team. I just didn't have the patience for getting my guys all the way up to 99 is all.
Reply With Quote
  #548  
Old 03-29-2019, 11:13 PM
q 3's Avatar
q 3 q 3 is offline
Hello. Can you hear me?
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Pronouns: singular they 4 lyfe
Posts: 2,531
Default

I did all of the postgame except the true final boss and had a lot of fun with it. The other superbosses all feature high-level NPC party members and the bonus stratum has a cool concept and aesthetic. Also the final superboss is truly optional in that you can literally walk right to the exit on B30F and get the ending without even triggering the fight. (If you do view the ending without doing the fight, make absolutely sure not to save when prompted because you will otherwise be unable to see the "best" ending without doing a NG+.)

Come to think of it, I've done the bonus strata in most EOs but only ever got around to beating the ultimate boss in EO1. (4 too, I guess, though I used the in-game cheats for it.) I'd like to think it's less that I gave up and more that I ran out of steam. Someday I will go back to EO3 and do the third route and fight the final boss, also someday I will NG+ 4 and 5, also maybe someday I'll get to the end of some version of EO2. But first I have like 40 more hours of Nexus...
Reply With Quote
  #549  
Old 03-29-2019, 11:51 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by q 3 View Post
Also the final superboss is truly optional in that you can literally walk right to the exit on B30F and get the ending without even triggering the fight.
That is hilarious and amazing.
Reply With Quote
  #550  
Old 04-03-2019, 02:34 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by q 3 View Post
I did all of the postgame except the true final boss and had a lot of fun with it.
I got into this and am also having a lot of fun with it! I've reached floor 30, and now I just have that floor, last level cap unlocking boss, and the superboss left. This is the furthest I've gotten in any EO postgame. The dungeon layout, the enemy encounters, and the bosses seem much more fair and much less balanced around having a specific party or a specific set of skills. The theme is also very fun.

It's still technically an Atlus blind teleportation maze so that could be a dealbreaker for people who just hate those. . . but the way it's implemented gives you a pretty good clue about which teleporter you want to jump into, if you've sufficiently mapped where you've already been.

Question: Is 30F another backtrack by teleporting through unexplored areas of 26F-29F journey like 29F, or is it mostly a self-contained floor?
Reply With Quote
  #551  
Old 04-04-2019, 09:57 PM
estragon's Avatar
estragon estragon is offline
この世の最も無智なる者
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,601
Default

Never mind the question, the final floor was the most straightforward floor in the entire game, so I already finished everything but the superboss, which I think I'll just ignore since my party seemed ill suited for it (and probably underlevelled, with no where else to explore really or quests to complete, leaving me with no options but to grind forever or buy DLC).

My party could handle everything else no problem, but the superboss really demands a party focused on pure damage output or you'll get overwhelmed. I could probably do it with the reserve party members who are at a slightly lower but decent level getting conch EXP, but I don't want to grind gold and EXP and conditional drops (or buy DLC) to catch them up a bit and buy them the relevant endgame equipment. So . . . I'm done.

I'm still shocked that their problem was never being too squishy though! I really thought that would screw me over at some point, but in the end their problem was only not enough damage output for the superboss. Which is fine.

Anyway, this was one of my favorites in this series. Good dungeons, good classes/races, good encounter design, good boss design, challenging but fair postgame. I think this is the first EO where I explored every floor and beat all the level-cap raising bosses. I usually quit as soon as I start the postgame and get annoyed by something that feels unfair, but this one was fun, and even provides an "everything but the superboss" option for a postgame ending of sorts.
Reply With Quote
  #552  
Old 04-05-2019, 07:56 AM
MCBanjoMike's Avatar
MCBanjoMike MCBanjoMike is online now
Sudden chomper
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Montreal
Posts: 16,663
Default

I really think that EOV is a quality entry in the series that doesn't get enough love, although personally I was too burned out on this style of game to enjoy it properly. But for someone who hasn't played a lot of Odysseys, I would recommend it over IV (and of course II, but I may actually hate that game).
Reply With Quote
  #553  
Old 05-02-2019, 09:13 AM
Peklo's Avatar
Peklo Peklo is online now
Love is OGR
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Finland
Pronouns: They/Them, She/Her
Posts: 1,247
Default

Etrian Odyssey V: Beyond the Myth is a contender for best of the series and I had no faith in it pulling off such a feat.

When the game came out in late 2017 I played its demo, and as if by a matter of course, readied myself for the full version. I'd played every other game in the series before, so why should this be any different? Upon release though, the best I could muster towards the game was indifference, and I put it aside with an air of disappointment I could not vocalize. At the time I wondered if the series had simply run its course for me over the hundreds of hours of collective play, and whether EOV in particular was to blame for my disinterest in its dungeon-crawling. After having played and finished the game, I can with the benefit of context and hindsight say that EOV was not responsible for my malaise at the time, but the supremely disheartening Untold remakes of the first two games that had preceded it, which had insinuated and wormed their way into my brain affecting how I thought of Etrian Odyssey in the abstract; a less interesting and good series than it actually is. EOV effectively washed all the doubt away--the last time I was this excited about the games was in the days of Etrian Odyssey III.

Some things I think V is particularly good at:
  • class design. As a player of RPGs, I'm not particularly numbers-crunchy for the joy of it, but I appreciate commitment to a theme and the mechanics to communicate that as much as anyone. V has a class selection that carries on the eclectic spirit of III, with dashes of the original game's straightforwardness and the refocused streamlining of IV. This is maybe the only series where I get into the party-building numbers-go-up aspect of play, where I can always approach it on terms of personal taste and inclination instead of raw optimization, and the game facilitates and indulges me in the act. These choices and personalizations were fun to make under the auspices of V's mastery class set-up, because they struck a very good balance between free customization and invisibly guided party builds. Experimentation still lives in EO even at its more directed moments.
  • the town. I think this is something that's generally undervalued and underdiscussed with the series, but EO at its best lives and dies by its writing for me, and one way the writing manifests most consistently through the many hours you spend with the games is with their respective townships and establishments. Everyone in V's Iorys is likable and memorable, from the hardworking and hapless innkeeper Jenetta and her unseen sisters to the amicably enterpreunial Syrik, to the protective ex-adventurer Mirina, the firm but supportive guildmaster Egar and the culturally engaged council representative Prince Ramus. All of them have more going on on an individual level than the confines of their roles in the player's context, and they're depicted as such--at times you might run into them in the labyrinth itself, or spending time with one another just because (like Egar and Ramus sharing cooking tips, or Mirina beings friends with Egar's wife). These little moments are made better by the sort of low-key progressiveness that is not new to EO, under its eyebrow-raising surface--characters will positively muse about the dissolution of enforced gender roles or catch themselves racially profiling others and swearing to do better, and it's just part of the fabric of the world and its peoples like the rest of the game.
  • the labyrinth. There just aren't enough good things to say about the feel of moment-to-moment exploration in V. After III and IV's expansion of the series's concept of a single explorable megastructure in their own ways, V's return to the original model may nominally seem like a regression. What it does is give every dungeon concept its due through several iterative steps, in ways where no idea is left unexplored or undercooked. At its best and most tense, V's labyrinths play out like dense dynamic puzzles, with slim margins for error but with room to breathe nonetheless between a rock and a monstrous place. The wild inventiveness never really stops, and at its strongest the game serves up some truly dazzling layouts and navigational means. It's one of the best dungeon-crawling experiences the series has ever accomplished, especially in this latter era when marathon endurance treks have diminished in favour of a different brand of a more peaks-and-valleys structure and challenge. In that context, EOV is unbeatable.
  • exploration events. This is, I think, the more recognized aspect of the series's writing strengths, and something that's been with it since the beginning: quiet little narratives in the corners of the labyrinth that play out like excerpts from a tabletop roleplaying session. III's innovation (if I recall) was to integrate your guild members by name into these episodes, creating contextually and personally significant narratives out of stock templates so effectively that it may as well have appeared as magic. V's twist on the formula is to absolutely litter its environments with these events, making the act of exploring its world a constantly surprising and delightful task even outside of the inherent joys of mapmaking itself. Its other no less than game-changing alteration is to serve up a summary and exp tally of each individual happening, neatly providing a bookend and a material reward both for attentive explorers. Like III's introduction of exp rewards for quests that made them more palatable for those that weren't satisfied with them purely because of narrative and item rewards before, so does V's adventure log create more incentives for players to engage with one of the primary appeals of the series at its core: the exploration of narratives both environmental and personal, and be rewarded for doing so.
  • mindful hindsight. The series was almost a decade going when EOV was developed and released. Its arcs have taken it through iterative expansions, iconoclastic innovators and recontextualizing modernizers, and through all of these a certain iconography has been built up that makes Etrian Odyssey what it is. V's return to the series's roots, so to say, isn't just a call to nostalgia, but indicative and present factor in how it plays out and plays with series conventions. It may be a stratum that resembles a past one, like the Lucent Hollows to the Azure Rainforest. It may be a character resemblance, like Egar to Marion. It may even be larger thematic conceits, like the hidden nature of the world awaiting at the end of the journey, and the push beyond the beyond. Maybe it's just Lili and Solor, the two gay folk heroes of Iorys, who are surely a twist on the solemn watchers Ren and Tlachtga from the first game. Instead of inevitable tragedy, V chooses to spin its take towards catharsis and a hopeful future, and this is what's so crucial about the creative choices it makes with every bit of inheritance it carries with it: there's remodeling, reassessment and recontextualization. It's at once familiar and fresh, and the best possible incarnation of the series's holistic heritage in ways that aren't literally celebratory. As it is, it embodies the focus of EO1, the occasional cruelty of EO2, the creativity of EO3 and the sheer playability of EO4. Whether you read the series as having ended here or at Nexus, it plays out like a farewell note to everything that came to pass before it even as it adds its own wrinkles to its history.

I will conclude with some notes about the party that made it through the labyrinth. Usually I name my EO guilds after friends, but this time I indulged some crossover fandom and made a very loosely-reasoned Touhou-themed party. Oops!

Front row: Meiling the Barrage Brawler Pugilist, Tenshi the Cannon Bearer Dragoon, Youmu the Blade Dancer Masurao
Back row: Seiga the Spirit Broker Necromancer, Sanae the Divine Herald Shaman

There really was no plan initially for this bunch, I just did the usual and picked the portraits or classes that seemed interesting, and trusted it would sort itself out from there. And it did, more than I could've expected. I'm used to limping through EO games with a sort of common confidence but no particular gift or effort as far as synergy and party composition, and here I thought it would be the same. As master classes unlocked, I spent some time retooling everyone to what seemed like an idea to pursue, and vets can probably guess what it was: all on Hell Slash, which I probably wouldn't even have paid attention to if I didn't think quad-wielding swords was inherently funny. After that, everyone just gelled into their roles to maximize Hell Slash's absurd damage output while maintaining survivability, and in effect it resulted in this team picking apart FOEs at threat level red on to the end of the game and into the bonus stratum. The final boss never got a move off because it was always bound and finished in a few rounds total.

I've never experienced such out-of-control bullying of ostensibly overpowering opposition, and it's a testament to the game's rock-solid design that I could stumble upon these tactics for myself, apply them, and still get an experience out of it that didn't by any means feel "broken" as a detriment to play. Beyond the specifics of the Hell Slash set-up, the basic rhythm and nature of exploration also tickled my preferences, with most standard battles solved through application of startlingly reliable mass poisons, and with an absence of a standard healer in favour of numerous in and out-of-battle passives stacking up to cover everyone. Even rid of the exploration context of the series, EO combat at its best feels like few other RPGs do.

That's where I'm at now, a floor into the sixth stratum, which by all means seems surmountable by bumblers unlike most past EO ultimate stratums, and I might pick away at it at my leisure. But for the most part, Etrian Odyssey V is concluded for me, and I'm really, really happy that I could refresh on the series and my understanding of it through honestly engaging with what ended up being an excellent game.
Reply With Quote
  #554  
Old 05-02-2019, 10:35 AM
Destil's Avatar
Destil Destil is offline
Rogue Robot
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Tucson, AZ
Pronouns: he / him
Posts: 23,490
Default

Hard agree. Especial on Untold souring the series for me in general and V being a near return to form of III. As more of a dirty number-crunching optimizer I do with that they had kept EOIV's realization that not all skills had to go to 10, but that's really my only gripe now.

I really need to go back and finish up the last two stratums, but I'll likely do what I always do and do that once I finally get around to buying Cross.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
atlas , atlus , eo from myth to laughter , etrian odyssey , even in the tags f.o.e.

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:48 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Your posts İyou, 2007