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Alastor15243

Alastor plays and ranks the whole series! Now Playing: Revelation!

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24 minutes ago, lenticular said:

This definitely sucked for me as a first-time player playing without spoilers or any information from outside the game. Stuff like this and stat bonuses/penalties on weapons were awful to try to figure out, tripped me up more than once, and ended up making me paranoid. Even by the end of the game, I still didn't feel that I had a good enough grasp on all of the numbers to accurately predict exactly how much damage a given attack would do.

I can sympathize with that. It's easily the biggest problem the interface has, in spite of everything else it fixed.

24 minutes ago, lenticular said:

In a nice "different strokes for different folks" sort of way, I spent most of my time in My Castle lamenting how it was so completely inferior to Garreg Mach in pretty much every way. For me, My Castle commits two major sins. One is having anything be linked to the passage of real time. I want to play games at my own pace, not be penalised for playing through too much too fast OR incentivised to log in every day even when I don't feel like playing. The other major sin is having online/social aspects inextricably tied to the main single-player campaign. I'm extremely introverted, and I enjoy gaming as a solitary experience. I don't mind that social features exist, but I have zero interest in engaging with them, and being disadvantaged for not doing so sucks. "Oh, hey, I'll upgrade my weapon... oh, wait, never mind, I don't have the right kind of ore so I guess I won't".

Most of my newfound appreciation for My Castle just comes from recognizing the shit I took for granted until experiencing Garreg Mach. I actually agree that changing this would be a major improvement. As I said at one point earlier in the thread, I'd ideally want My Castle modified so that the social interaction becomes a replacement for options you already have in-game, not an augmentation. Especially since the Sword of Damocles is constantly dangling over the servers' heads and when they eventually shut down My Castle will change drastically. I'd ideally want it to be that you get your one type of each resource like in-game, but then can trade them to randomized AI traders who show up after every mission, offering to trade something you have for something else. But you can also take those resources and offer to trade them to other people, like put a certain amount of emeralds you want converted into sapphires, and then anyone who wants to trade you a sapphire in exchange for an emerald can do so while visiting your base. It's still just converting the resources you already had, just like the AI traders, instead of just an objective improvement of free shit.

Curious that even the extremely minimal social interaction of visiting other castles is uncomfortable. Did you try it and nope out, or did you just not want to try?

At any rate, glad to have you back! Can't wait to hear your thoughts when I start Birthright!

Edited by Alastor15243

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1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

I can sympathize with that. It's easily the biggest problem the interface has, in spite of everything else it fixed.

Most of my newfound appreciation for My Castle just comes from recognizing the shit I took for granted until experiencing Garreg Mach. I actually agree that changing this would be a major improvement. As I said at one point earlier in the thread, I'd ideally want My Castle modified so that the social interaction becomes a replacement for options you already have in-game, not an augmentation. Especially since the Sword of Damocles is constantly dangling over the servers' heads and when they eventually shut down My Castle will change drastically. I'd ideally want it to be that you get your one type of each resource like in-game, but then can trade them to randomized AI traders who show up after every mission, offering to trade something you have for something else. But you can also take those resources and offer to trade them to other people, like put a certain amount of emeralds you want converted into sapphires, and then anyone who wants to trade you a sapphire in exchange for an emerald can do so while visiting your base. It's still just converting the resources you already had, just like the AI traders, instead of just an objective improvement of free shit.

Curious that even the extremely minimal social interaction of visiting other castles is uncomfortable. Did you try it and nope out, or did you just not want to try?

At any rate, glad to have you back! Can't wait to hear your thoughts when I start Birthright!

So how much items and such are only/extremely rare/tedious to obtain without MyCastle? AKA going to be gone for good when the servers are gone?

I know those weird "Child" unit things between Corrin's are going to be lost. (Who thought self-cest would be a thing in fe?)

I did avoid using Renown stuff in Awakening.

Edited by Samz707

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5 minutes ago, Samz707 said:

So how much items and such are only/extremely rare/tedious to obtain without MyCastle? AKA going to be gone for good when the servers are gone?

I did avoid using Renown stuff in Awakening.

I don't think any item (aside from the stuff in visitation and battle rewards) is going to be strictly speaking gone forever. It's more the fact that resources in general are going to be much scarcer since you have to rely on random "I found this weird thing" drops, lottery rewards, and arena gambling in order to get more of your non-farmable resources, and the accessory shop and prison use a ton of those resources, meaning that the capture system and accessories are going to be nerfed to hell (especially since you can't just get free accessories from your friends anymore. You also won't be able to buy katanas in Conquest or swords in Birthright anymore because you won't have your friends' shops to visit and buy shit from (you can't buy the limited stock items, but you can buy anything the store sells an infinite amount of, so, most basic weapons and staves).

Edited by Alastor15243

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3 minutes ago, Alastor15243 said:

I don't think any item (aside from the stuff in visitation and battle rewards) is going to be strictly speaking gone forever. It's more the fact that resources in general are going to be much scarcer since you have to rely on random "I found this weird thing" drops, lottery rewards, and arena gambling in order to get more of your non-farmable resources, and the accessory shop and prison use a ton of those resources, meaning that the capture system and accessories are going to be nerfed to hell (especially since you can't just get free accessories from your friends anymore. You also won't be able to buy katanas in Conquest or swords in Birthright anymore because you won't have your friends' shops to visit and buy shit from (you can't buy the limited stock items, but you can buy anything the store sells an infinite amount of, so, most basic weapons and staves).

While I haven't started playing past Character Creation (Since long story short, a steam group for players to play an MP game that doesn't' have too many fans had an event where they were all going to play the game so they'd be enough players to get a match going happened and well, I can play Fates another day but it could be a while before enough people would play that MP game so I kinda put Fates down when that happened.) that sounds kinda why you shouldn't build a game around social mechanics and such, I'm someone who actually tends to avoid stuff like that, especially on a first time playthrough. (since I kinda like to have a "Vanilla" experience, I don't even like using DLC weapons and such on my first play through outside of the DLC in other games unless they're extremely similar stat-wise to pre-existing stuff.)

Or at least provide some sort of off-line equivalent.

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50 minutes ago, Alastor15243 said:

Most of my newfound appreciation for My Castle just comes from recognizing the shit I took for granted until experiencing Garreg Mach. I actually agree that changing this would be a major improvement. As I said at one point earlier in the thread, I'd ideally want My Castle modified so that the social interaction becomes a replacement for options you already have in-game, not an augmentation. Especially since the Sword of Damocles is constantly dangling over the servers' heads and when they eventually shut down My Castle will change drastically. I'd ideally want it to be that you get your one type of each resource like in-game, but then can trade them to randomized AI traders who show up after every mission, offering to trade something you have for something else. But you can also take those resources and offer to trade them to other people, like put a certain amount of emeralds you want converted into sapphires, and then anyone who wants to trade you a sapphire in exchange for an emerald can do so while visiting your base. It's still just converting the resources you already had, just like the AI traders, instead of just an objective improvement of free shit.

That would definitely be an improvement. For me personally, I'd prefer if the social elements be kept even further segregated from the main campaign. Like, keep the ability to visit other people and battle their teams, but then have the benefits that you accrue by doing so feed back into those same systems, by giving you rewards that are only valid in those game modes. That said, I know that other people enjoy having social aspects that tie into the main game, so I know that my personal ideal probably isn't the objectively best choice in terms of game design that appeals to the most people. And I think that your proposed solution would be far preferable to what we actually got. I might grumble a little, but ultimately I wouldn't mind being slightly inconvenienced by slightly less ready access to resources. And like you say, not only would it help people like me who have no interest in engaging with that sort of mechanic, but it would also helpf future-proof the game against the inevitability of server shutdown.

(Although, I do sometimes think that server shutdowns are a form of deliberate planned obsolescence, so maybe game companies are actively trying to avoid future proofing their games. Maybe I'm just being overly cynical?)

1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

Curious that even the extremely minimal social interaction of visiting other castles is uncomfortable. Did you try it and nope out, or did you just not want to try?

I just wasn't interested in trying. Too many annoyances and negative experiences in other games in the past just make me completely lose interest as soon as I see social features, and I have better things to do with my time than try them out in any game I encounter them, just in case this one game happens to be the unicorn exception to the rule.

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1 minute ago, lenticular said:

I just wasn't interested in trying. Too many annoyances and negative experiences in other games in the past just make me completely lose interest as soon as I see social features, and I have better things to do with my time than try them out in any game I encounter them, just in case this one game happens to be the unicorn exception to the rule.

I see. Well to clarify, you don't actually "interact" with anyone. You're just going to their castles so their soldiers can hand out free shit and you can visit their various buildings and use them, and then you can go to the CPU avatar and give them accessories (without losing any of your own) or fight them.

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Revelation Day 10: Chapter 15

So I bring Benny up to my quarters and when he shows up, I see his neutral face and the subtitles say “This was fun. Okay, bye.”

...So I didn't expect “Haha! This was fun! Okay, bye!” to be what the voice line came out as.

Anyway, so, since my team is getting stronger, I finally decided to update my castle defenses to make the throne a sitting duck. There, so if it was starting to get annoying to fight me, now it should be a breeze to kick my ass.

...Honestly, it feels kinda awkward to have the armory and shop be separate stores, because while most places make sure that any unit running the place provides some bonus to something, I'm pretty sure there isn't a single class that provides a discount in both the armory and the shop. Just a thought.

Alright, that's all for this morning. Let's go do Chapter 15!

Gee, I wonder how the butterfly effect of Dakota's decisions caused the Rainbow Sage to assume a different form this time? Or does he just randomly look like a different person every day, and we just showed up on a different day?

Anyway, the hike up the mountain is, just like with Anri's Way, claimed to be extremely treacherous... and yet people do it all the time, and in fact my entire army managed to do it, including my two little sisters.

So yeah, the Sevenfold Sanctuary map. In Birthright it's got this amusing gimmick where every enemy has one stat capped and one stat ridiculously low. In Conquest it's your first real encounter with the enemy using clever skill combos to set up crazy defensive formations. In Revelation... the enemies are just strong. That's it.

I only have space to bring three pairs, so I bring Mozu/Hinata, Keaton/Effie, and Dakota/Kagero. I also bring the staff sisters and Azura. This map branches in two before uniting in the center, but aside from getting all of the exp, there's... really no reason whatsoever to even do one side. There's treasure, but you can go backwards, so you just take one route and then attack the top of the opposite flank from behind, then nab the chest without ever fighting the first part of the side you skipped. Also... for reasons that will become apparent shortly, you actually should stick around near the entrance for a bit in Revelation, so I'm gonna take advantage of that, because one of my planned groups would be better for the first part of the right side and the second part of the left, and the opposite with the other. So... I'll be having Mozu tackle the right side and Keaton the left, and then I'll switch once... the thing happens.

...Oh I'm gonna have shit to say.

Oh yeah, I forgot the illusions you fight here in RV and BR can actually talk.

Anyway, this map's primary gimmick on all three routes is how it's structured. It's a bunch of rooms separated by stairs. Stairs give you this sort of pseudo-canto. If you end your action by climbing stairs, then you move to the “warp point” on the other end of the stairs, but you get another turn. Your movement is just temporarily reduced by how many spaces it took to reach the stairs that turn. You can also go back. The enemy can't use these things, which really puts the fight on your terms and requires the enemy defenses to be difficult to penetrate for things to be hard. Conquest is pretty good at making this difficult yet engaging. Rev, however... yeah it's just raw stats on the enemies. Yet again I'm not sure what I'd do without a dread fighter. I certainly wouldn't be splitting up here. I'd have to player-phase one side with everyone in order to get a foothold in this eastern room.

Man, part of me wants to use skirmishes in order to abuse the spike traps to grind up support points on Elise and Sakura. I really wanna make Sakura a troubadour, but when healers so rarely see combat, it's hard to get them to support each other without constantly healing each other's chip damage.

Ah yes, and the first new recruit of this map shows up: Shura. He's a level 10 adventurer with ridiculously high base stats for this part of the game, and he can heal, with a C rank in staves. He's... really good. We'll have to recruit him by talking to him, but that won't be an issue.

And the turn after that, Nyx shows up right by the start. If we had made any progress through the map, we'd have to backtrack for her. And it probably wouldn't be worth it. Because, you see, if all the balance issues are in fact, as it so frequently seems like, a deliberate attempt to scream from the mountaintops “BALANCE IS FOR PUSSIES!”... then this is a power move so ballsy and shameless that you'd almost have to respect the sheer audacity that they can summon from within the depths of their madness.

Shura joins at level 10 promoted.

Nyx... joins at level 9.

Unpromoted.

Her stats and level are the same here, in Chapter 15, as they were when she joined in Conquest in Chapter 9.

Her base physical bulk is insufficient to survive a single fucking hit from any physical enemy on this map. The diviners leave her at one fucking HP.

KEATON AND DAKOTA ARE LEVEL 19.

Character-wise... if you don't know her deal, she's a woman implied to be somewhere in her fifties, but who, as a bratty, magically-gifted, kinda psycho child... accidentally cursed herself to look like a child forever. Unlike the dragons, however, she actually acts her real age, which makes this a lot less uncomfortable.

Weirdly though, Dakota's dialogue calls into question how young she's supposed to look, because Dakota says he “could very well” be older than her. Like he isn't sure. Is she supposed to look like a mid-teenager or something? I mean, granted, the game wants me to believe Elise is legal, so who the fuck knows?

Well, the generals are a massive pain that my physical units can barely do damage to and my mages flat-out can't survive, but with some help from Mozu softening them up, I manage to kill them, getting both Dakota and Keaton to level 20 so they can promote.

Given how terrible Dakota's magic is, I was tempted to go wyvern lord, but ultimately I went with malig knight anyway simply because it gets his res up to be comparable to his defense.

Due to promotion gains and Azura's inspiring song, Keaton can just barely reach the speed threshold to avoid getting doubled by Shura. Meaning we have the time to recruit him.

...Actually, looks like I didn't need to bother with the inspiring song, because of the steel bow speed penalties.

...Aaaaand he's standing on the stairs. Fuck. Of course he is. Fates AI actively seeks out the best terrain to attack from, and stairs give 10 avoid! This... this could be bad.

...Nope, the other enemies in the room just flat-out didn't move, because this is Revelation. All I have to do is bait him away from the stairs and then Dakota can come in to recruit him.

Having Dakota talk about how Shura doesn't look like the sanctuary guards makes me realize... why was he fighting on the same side as them, and why didn't the sanctuary guards attack him to make him prove his worth? He was trying to see the sage, wasn't he?

I also find it kind of amusing that we just inform Shura that we already killed the guy Shura swore vengeance against, and he's like: “...WHAT!? ...Uh... thanks!”

Imagine if this happened:

Inigo Montoya: I do not mean to pry... but you don't by any chance happen to have six fingers on your right hand?

Man in Black: ...I hope that wasn't a friend of yours. I killed him on the way over here.

Inigo Montoya: ...You what.

Something tells me part of Inigo wouldn't take it that well, given how much the quest for revenge has defined his life in that story.

...Anyway, after some mildly annoying shit with the central room that I eventually managed to power through with Mozu's help once she reunited with us, I set Keaton to taking out the ending room. After using some walling strategies to have Keaton and Dakota protect Elise in a corner while they fought the generals, I had Keaton finish off the boss.

Okay, so apparently the Rainbow Sage can just... power up the Yato without the help of any of the divine weapons. This one doesn't require Takumi or Leo to be present like in Birthright or Conquest. Only Takumi's here, and he's not even mentioned. Rainbow Sage just goes “lemme power up your Yato real quick”.

Also, Rainbow Sage actually dies here, whereas in Conquest and Birthright he just implied he wasn't long for the world. But we didn't meet him in Birthright until Chapter 19, so... what, was doing this Yato power up without the help of the sacred weapons too much for him? Why didn't he even ask for Takumi's help then?

Ah yes, the twelve dragons. So, there's the unnamed Dawn Dragon, the unnamed Dusk Dragon, the Astral Dragon Moro, the unnamed Rainbow Sage, Anankos, and... who the fuck else? It's hilarious that they just drop the fact that there were once twelve great dragons on us when we don't know half of their descriptions or even a quarter of their names.

This “reveal” is so outrageously unsatisfying, and it really goes to show how half-baked Fates' lore is. It's like with Awakening, except at least they didn't overwrite something that already existed with said shitty half-baked lore.

Ah yes, and now Jakob's here! Meaning I finally have my star chef! At this point he's useless for anything else, especially on a male avatar file, but I'll still be happy to have him for more reliable cooking!

Speaking of accessories, I upgrade the accessory shop, pay the werewolf with some beans, and finally have a fox tail! Weirdly, almost every unit seems to love these fucking things as presents, and I think they're fun. So, time to visit and give everyone a fox tail!

...Ishtar and I make yet another friendship baby. So that puts the score at two with her and absolutely none with anyone else. This has to be proportional to something Ishtar's player is doing on their end. Is it about how many accessories you received from them when you give your own? How many bond units have you guys gotten from me?

...Okay, I just got one each from Autumn and the swordmaster Corrin. I'm guessing either the points are randomized, or it depends on what they do for you between your visits.

Alright, that's all of the readers visited. Enjoy your fox tails!

Now for the supports, and then we'll end this for the week.

Alright, so Dakota asks Kagero about Mikoto and Ryoma's relationship, and how they “weren't related”. Yeah, uh... so... yeah, that's the thing. This is mentioned repeatedly in supports, but... we don't ever actually see the moment where this is explained to Dakota. It's just something he's already aware of before doing a single support. Was a term used to describe Mikoto that inherently implied this in Japanese translated to something in English that didn't? Or was this just chopped out of that mysterious original draft without thinking through the consequences?

A ridiculously short and corny exchange where Hinata compares haggling to fighting. That basically sums up the Hinata and Mozu A support.

Oh, and then Elise and Keaton get a support! I guess from all the healing Elise did. Let's check this out! I think I remember this one.

Ah yes, Elise immediately treats Keaton like a dog because he reminds her of Joseph, a beloved puppy who apparently lives “in town”. I guess he's just this stray everyone loves and feeds?

But yeah, It's adorable. Elise is being rude here, but since I reject this game's creepy attempts to convince me she's so much as a day over twelve, it's more cute than rage-inducing, especially since Keaton's being his hilarious wolf-tsundere self, embarrassed that he likes things that a puppy apparently likes and cursing his abject failure to convince anyone otherwise.

Alright. Looks like on Monday we'll be tackling the two back-to-back chapters where we get the final royals and leap into the Bottomless Canyon once more.

Stay safe, everyone!

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31 minutes ago, Alastor15243 said:

Gee, I wonder how the butterfly effect of Dakota's decisions caused the Rainbow Sage to assume a different form this time? Or does he just randomly look like a different person every day, and we just showed up on a different day?

 

What do you mean assume a different form? I don't remember him looking anything like his old staffy beardy look. And taking a quick glance at the wikis that's the only portrait they use for him.

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1 minute ago, Jotari said:

What do you mean assume a different form? I don't remember him looking anything like his old staffy beardy look. And taking a quick glance at the wikis that's the only portrait they use for him.

He appeared in the guise of an old Hoshidan villager when we see him in town in Rev. In Birthright he shows up in town as his normal self.

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8 hours ago, lenticular said:

In a nice "different strokes for different folks" sort of way, I spent most of my time in My Castle lamenting how it was so completely inferior to Garreg Mach in pretty much every way. For me, My Castle commits two major sins. One is having anything be linked to the passage of real time. I want to play games at my own pace, not be penalised for playing through too much too fast OR incentivised to log in every day even when I don't feel like playing. The other major sin is having online/social aspects inextricably tied to the main single-player campaign. I'm extremely introverted, and I enjoy gaming as a solitary experience. I don't mind that social features exist, but I have zero interest in engaging with them, and being disadvantaged for not doing so sucks. "Oh, hey, I'll upgrade my weapon... oh, wait, never mind, I don't have the right kind of ore so I guess I won't".

Speaking of which, I'm bothered by the fact that Fates arguments always seem to handwave the excess of randomness and the over-reliance on online when it comes to resources. I always see "X can double with a speed boost from the mess hall" and some such, but in practice, for most of the game, it's more like "whoops, X wasn't affected by the meal... better try again". Or "I ran out of milk (or fish), and my castle doesn't have it, so no speed meals for me. FML". It doesn't help that I'm also rather introverted. Also, as this IS a handheld game we're talking about, playing on the go, when online features cannot be used, is always a possibility, as is playing when the weather is bad.

Edited by Shadow Mir

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41 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

Speaking of which, I'm bothered by the fact that Fates arguments always seem to handwave the excess of randomness and the over-reliance on online when it comes to resources. I always see "X can double with a speed boost from the mess hall" and some such, but in practice, for most of the game, it's more like "whoops, X wasn't affected by the meal... better try again". Or "I ran out of milk (or fish), and my castle doesn't have it, so no speed meals for me. FML".

I mean, if it's just the meal boost they need to double, tonics are a thing. But yeah, relying on both is pushing it until you have a much better Mess Hall.

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1 minute ago, Alastor15243 said:

I mean, if it's just the meal boost they need to double, tonics are a thing. But yeah, relying on both is pushing it until you have a much better Mess Hall.

Fair enough. Also, I would note I ignored the part about who's cooking, which is also important as some characters are bad cooks.

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While I've abused the hell out of DLC goodies (ya, including Before Awakening Rewards XD), I have never been much into the visiting other my castle aspects of the game, per the whole aforementioned continent split making me out of the loop with a lot of the players around here. In fact this is the first I've ever heard of the Corrin asexual reproducing thing. With all that being said, I've never felt I needed to go to other castles to get the resources I need. Sure equipping all my Fighters with Clubs could be cool, but I can function with Iron Axes and the few clubs I can pick up randomly exploring my own castle. So while yeah, it always sucks to lose an online feature, I don't think the Fates online feature has ever been necessary for its play. The game gives you plenty of resources from your own castle, provided you're not speed running and trying to complete it all in the same day.

12 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

He appeared in the guise of an old Hoshidan villager when we see him in town in Rev. In Birthright he shows up in town as his normal self.

Huh...why? That's just confusing. And this is a conscious change they made after Birthright was written. His city isn't even a part of Hoshido as far as I can recall. Maybe they just wanted to have some element of surprise in Rev by not repeating the same plot point twice quite so identically (even though that's what they are doing).

Edited by Jotari

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