Friday, 5 August 2016

Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE

Time to start off with all of my biases.

1. I adore Fire Emblem, i remember seeing an ad for the first one that came out on TV and i knew instantly i was going to love every second of it. I remember resetting endlessly to make sure everyone lives just have have my favorite character die the turn before i could beat the whole game.... and not restarting cause i really just wanted to see the end. I bought the special edition of the latest game AND upgraded my 3ds to the fire emblem special edition.
If i had to pick my all time fav game series Fired emblem would be right up near the top... right up there with Falcom.

2. While i am more well versed in the Persona line of SMT games I have really enjoyed every SMT game i have played (even if i'll never beat some of them.... looking at you Devil Survivor) Again Persona would be up there as one of my fav series.

3. if you've stopped by one of my art live streams you know that most of my music is either Video game/anime soundtracks, classical or Jpop... it's what i've always listened to and enjoyed.

so suffice to say... this game, from it's very inception was hand crafted specifically to my personal tastes... the only way this could have been better is if there was some Ys stuff... otherwise this game was pretty much perfection in my eyes.

However before i get into plot and characters a quick story.

I have a friend, the second i started playing this i knew she would like it so i recommended it to her. eventually she went to the store to buy it and the cashier said something along the lines of. "ugh you want that game? it's terrible... you sure you don't want something else?"
my immediate impression of this cashier is that she must hate fun.... but whatever i wasn't there and people are entitled to their opinion... this is a niche game to say the least.
My friend replied simply "yes i'm sure, a friend of mine recommended it"
To which she replied "wow your friend must have shit taste"

Can i just say.... maybe don't be that person? there are so many kinds of games out there... if someone is playing a game you don't care for that really doesn't effect you at all.
Also literally your job is to sell games... actively encouraging someone to not buy a game is odd.

Anyways that was just a funny story my friend told me when she bought the game, since then she has played it and, Surprise surprise, enjoyed it.
it's almost like certain people like certain aspects of games that other people may not like... but no we are of one hive mind and all have to equally agree on which games are good and which are terrible. 

OK... now we can talk about the game.

We play as Aoi Itsuki, a highschooler who goes to support his friend Oribe Tsubasa in a singing competition when suddenly people start dropping and all the singers are kidnapped to the alternate dimension (Idolasphere).
trying to save his friend he goes after her and quickly pairs up with something known as a Mirage.
His Mirage is Chrom, he is a lord but past that he knows nothing about his past. Together he helps Itsuki save his friend.... only to realize that these Mirages may be the key to saving the world.

The two of them are scouted by Fortuna Entertainment, an agency specifically employing Mirage masters in order to try and stop these attacks. Can these kids take on such a huge responsibility AND also work on their craft (which is part of what makes them more powerful)

Each mirage is a different Fire Emblem character. most of them fairly well known but i did have to look up one or two. this also is true for boss characters who are all fairly recognizable.

The battle system however is pure SMT goodness. you have all the spells from that game as well as the rock paper scissors system for weapons and magic found in fire emblem. Battles are turn based, if certain characters can connect attacks you can have a long chain of attacks called a sessions (my longest one was 21)
you can spend SP to do these special attacks that tend to be way more powerful then any of your normal attacks or have bonuses like "heals your party and allows you to act again" or "puts you in counter state after attacking"
Eventually you get Adlib attacks which can happen at random and are more powerful then the base attack you chose.
After that you start getting Duo attacks which happen randomly during sessions and are awesome because most of them heal your party and i love not having to waste a turn healing.  (it also has the chance of extending the session so thats cool too)

It's over the top and colourful and it barely takes it's own concept seriously and honestly it's just a pile of smiles and fun.

This game made me laugh constantly.... i could barely listen to Barry Goodmans broken exaggerated japanese without doubling over. all the characters have personality and struggles and the game made me care for each of them equally.
even the characters who you think will just be the one note "i work better alone" jerks are full of personality (they also drop the lone wolf thing pretty damn quick so thats good... cause they ended up being my fav character)
Because all the characters have strengths and weaknesses you end up using everyone and the added ability to switch any party member out at any time is just.... why don't all games have this... it makes it so much fun. plus eventually they can all participate in sessions.
The Side stories are great.
The music is fantastic, i wish the CD that came with the special edition had all the songs cause now i need to buy the soundtrack.
The game is full of colour and fun.
The dungeon designs are some of the most fun i've seen in a game like this.
it's one of the better looking Wii U games (not that it's hard considering there isn't much on the system) The graphics aren't perfect but it's great for what this game is.

and other then the stupid game pads battery constantly dying on me i never wanted to put this game down.
I loved pretty much every second of it.

my final play time was 55:17... and i'm thinking of possibly playing again on Lunatic mode (just to see how much of a challenge it is) until Trails of Cold Steel 2 comes out. (which i believe is at the end of the month... yay)

Will this be my game of the year?
I honestly don't know, there have been so many amazing games this year,,, but it definitely will be up there.

Will people who have never played a Shin Megami Tensei game or Fire emblem like it.
Actually i would argue yes... if the fact that it's in japanese only or that it's primarily about idols turns you off then maybe this wont be for you. but if you like turn based JRPGs then this is one of the good ones.

I know it will never happen but if this got a sequel... i would buy the console it's on even if it's the only game i ever play on it.
I am so glad i played this game and i'm a little sad it's over.

"But Kat" i hear you muttering "what about the censorship?"
this is where i take a deep breath in.
Personally other then the change to the wedding dress costume i am okay will all the censorship.... it changes nothing in the story... that includes all the changes to chapter 2... i think it makes for a better character arc in the long run.
besides it's not like she's never seen in a swimsuit... it's just not the focus.
though i would have enjoying putting the male characters in their swimsuits...
i would have also enjoyed putting them in glasses but you can't always get what you want.
but yeah the change the wedding dress was dumb and turned a pretty costume into a monotone mess. it could have at least been sheer and sparkly but NOOOOO.

But yeah, great game... if it sounds even remotely interesting to you then please pick it up. I want atlus and nintendo to see that games like that can come to english speaking countries and still do well.

now i think it's time ot draw a little fanart (or a lot.... we will see)

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