Despite my best efforts, I couldn't generate an interest in getting through Metroid Prime 3 for the time-being, so I just moved on to Shin Megami Tensei Persona 3: FES.

Persona 3 is a JRPG in which you control a male high school student who has just moved into a new dorm and school.  The twist is that by night you fight monsters that turn people mindless using summoned "Personas" by shooting yourself in the head.  I don't understand, either.

Anyway, the game has two sides - the social side where you improve your interpersonal attributes and build up relationships.  You have three attributes: Academics, Charm and Courage.  It's like a flash RPG where you do activities through the day.  Building social links improves the effectiveness of your Personas.  This kind of thing draws me in despite being relatively shallow.

The second side is everything regarding combat.  You can buy new weapons and armour, get new Personas by battling, Fuse personas to create new ones, all in an effort to progress through this one building in which you're trying to make it to the top.  This building is sectioned into Blocks, further into parts segmented by bosses, then further into individual floors.  Right before each boss segment there are checkpoints that allow you to return to the entrance and from the entrance to that point.

Battles are turned-based allow you to use Personas as the usual special/magic attacks that use an MP meter, or you can use a weapon.  Naturally there are strengths and weaknesses in elements.  The one thing that stands out as unique is the knock-down system where if you get a critical hit or hit a weakness, the enemy (or you if you're hit) are knocked down (lose a turn basically) and get to attack again.  If all the enemies are knocked down, you can do an "all-out-attack" where you attack all the enemies.

You also don't control all the characters, only your own and given vague commands to the others,  but usually it's best to let them decide for themselves.  There's also no way of avoiding stupid moves such as if you know an enemy is invulnerable to fire, you can't specifically tell your team not to do attack with fire (though they'll stop for that battle after the first one fails)

The game so far is essentially a dungeon crawler with simplistic social aspects.  My experience is very much in vein with Suikoden V and Radiata Stories in that I am very much enjoying the game for what it is and it's exactly what I feel like playing, but as a game it's not diversified enough.  What you can actually do seems limited and the dungeon sections really simplistic.

Hopefully things pick up a bit.

Posted by Ellyoda Sat, 12 Jul 2008 21:15:31 (comments: 8)
Sat, 12 Jul 2008 21:35:58
Persona sounds like kinda fun, but I prefer non turn based games. I kinda hate in turn based games that if the enemy attacks you will always get hit.

I think there should awalys be a chance to avoid all attacks, no matter how slim the chance is.

That's why Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga is my favorite RPG ever. You can avoid any attack. So if you are good enough you will not have to level up!
Sat, 12 Jul 2008 21:54:21
Super Mario RPG - Timed hits!  You get do the same for physical attacks (not all special attacks you can avoid, though).  Even if you don't get it perfect, how well you do still influences damage.

Real-time battles are just as bad for that, though.
Sat, 12 Jul 2008 22:23:00
The same is true for Paper Mario, but the best system is in Mario & Luigi superstar Saga. If you do not have the game, try it. It is awesome plus supper funny!
Sat, 12 Jul 2008 22:51:34
I have it, but I got stuck looking around for some hammer I need to progress and gave up.  Paper Mario's system sucked.
Sun, 13 Jul 2008 12:09:04
Play Prime 3 or I will strike with fury.
Mon, 14 Jul 2008 09:21:32
How does the battle system compare to say Grandia or Grandia II?
Mon, 14 Jul 2008 16:45:52
Fury... rising
Tue, 15 Jul 2008 07:00:06
I haven't played a Grandia game, so I wouldn't know.  Persona could've used tweaking the attacks a little weaker, though; they're too powerful to make the strategy very much apart of the game as opposed to the weaponry/persona you enter the battle with.
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