Trails in the Sky 3rd and matters arising

To cut straight to chase, I just can’t bring myself to play Trails in the Sky 3rd. I started it up all, played through the prologue, turned it off, just can’t play it again. My body rejects it. You know that thing where every time you try to do Action A your mind immediately comes up with a thousand other things you could be doing instead? It’s like that, for the past 18 days. I wanted to get through at least 5 hours and write some preliminary thoughts about it, but my hand refuses to click on the icon on the screen. Trails 3rd is not going to happen. At least not any time soon.

I’m not 100% sure why I don’t want to give Trails a chance, but four likely reasons come to mind:

  1. The battle system is a step back from Zero and Ao‘s. It’s sluggish and lengthy and we’ve gone back to the era where enemies had to spend a turn just getting into range before they could attack. I don’t want to go through 40+ hours of this.
  2. The encounter rate in the prologue was too high. Too many enemies everywhere you turn. It made sense for story reasons but it was annoying to play. And Kevin’s level is high already so there’s no satisfaction of leveling up to go with it.
  3. I don’t like Kevin. He’s kinda gross. Those “playboy type with a secret serious/dark side” characters are always a turn-off. And that spiky green hair is just so… blergh.
  4. Leftover trauma from Trails in the Sky FC and Zero no Kiseki. They’re both games I started with a lot of hope and vigor and enjoyed for a while, but they just dragged on and on and on and on. And then FC had the nerve to end on a cliffhanger, I still can’t believe it. Zero was much better, but I still don’t want to go through that experience where you play for 40 hours, okay that was pretty good, now it’s time to move on, then Falcom goes “Wait, don’t go! The story’s just about to start!” WHAAAAAT?! I can’t… no more, please… please!

I think the sluggish battle system is the biggest thing holding me back. I want something fast and snappy, whap bang pow! Kevin’s supposed to be so strong and so elite but he can’t one-shot a simple Rottweiler? Pitiful. I need to really really be in the mood for an RPG before I can do this. Not quite there right now. However since The 3rd is supposed to be a complete self-contained experience, I probably will return to it someday…? No promises, though. I need a little more time.

So what now?

I’ve been dissuaded from playing Dragon Quest 7 by the kind readers of this little blog. Apparently it’s Falcom turned up to 11 on the “Nothing happens until you stop caring” scale when it comes to slowness. I believe them, but the warning came a little too late… -_-;; Not to worry though, I have a handy-dandy guinea pig in the form of my DQ8-obsessed brother. If he can’t finish DQ7, no one can. And I didn’t even have to ask him. The conversation went like:

– What’s that?
– It’s…
– DQ7!!!! *yoink* See ya! *zoom*

And I haven’t seen him since. Last I heard he’d taken a whole week off work, so it’s either going really well or very, very badly. I could call him and find out, but I’m rather enjoying this Schrodinger’s Gamer state of uncertainty. >:-DDD

Since he has my 3DS, that leaves me with my PC, DS and PSP. I’ve almost exhausted the playable options on the latter two, so… Current plan: clear up the various demos and freeware titles clogging up my hard drive and start something more serious in October. Plan B: sleep the rest of September away and start gaming again in October. A break is fine too.

Let’s go with plan A for now. First up is Tinctura ~Hazama no Machi no Monogatari~, another Atelier-inspired otome game in the vein of Eternal Wish and Densetsu no Kusuriyasan, but without the adult elements. See ya!

11 thoughts on “Trails in the Sky 3rd and matters arising

  1. Nina says:

    Ahahaha your brother reminds me the first time that I played DQV :D. IX was a dissapointment , VI have a terrible encounter rate but V was love at first sight. And yep DQ VII have a story who moves slow but it’s worth it towards the end. That if you didn’t give up because the snail pace…. or because that terrible terrible dungeon.

    Are you in mood for a strategy game ? Because you can play R-type for psp

    PS: did you plan to play FE:Fates? The history is bad but at least the gameplay is a improvement .

    • Kina says:

      DQIV is my favorite so far, though I enjoyed DQV as well. VI killed me with the INSANE encounter rate, and the characters weren’t as memorable. 7 and 8 I haven’t played, IX I regret playing. So boring…
      When you said R-Type, my mind first went to R-Type Delta and I thought “Eh? Strategy?” but it turns out there’s an R-Type Tactics game? This is the first I’ve heard of it, will look into it. I hope it’s not too Advance Wars-like.
      FE: Fates I’m skipping, but I have a lot of other things on the 3DS I’m looking forward to trying.

      • Nina says:

        IV and VIII are available for android the good thing about IV is the restored party chat ! Honestly I didn’t like so much IV because the lack of that option they add so much depth about the characters (ex: kiril sees solo like his rival , maya and meena dialogue etc) IX is horrible way to ruin the franchise seriously I didn’t like the side quest or the characters related story locked in DLC and the randomness in postgame. Tactics and operation bitter chocolate are indeed obscures the good thing about both games is how they explain about the bydo empire and such. I have never played Advance wars so I don’t how similar both are. The game isn’t so complicated but is very long and starting chapter 4-5 you are in permanent fog so using you scout ship is a must.

        Ehh I don’t blame you if you skip FE:Fates the gameplay it’s a improvement but the history is too much anime for my taste and the DLC true route… at least this game made me to appreciate a bit awakening if only because fates made the supports : quantity over quality

  2. K says:

    Well, it’s not really that _nothing_ happens in DQVII. It’s just that for a long time nothing but self contained side vignettes happen instead of a big overarching storyline.

    I was really surprised seeing you even starting jet another Trails game, knowing your track record with them 😀

  3. ThomasHansen says:

    Wow, this blog is awesome. I’m defnitely gonna be visiting it regularly. So many blog posts on games I like and have yet to play. I’m working on my Japanese right now to be able to play more Japanese-exclusive/not-yet-localized games. I love the Atelier games, I’m playing Firis right now. Soon I’ll be playing Majo to Hyakkihei 2, probably this week.

    • Kina says:

      Thank you for visiting and for the kind words. I’m a firm advocate of learning Japanese for the serious JRPG fan. You cut out the middleman, save yourself a lot of grief, get to play stuff much earlier and have access to a huge library of games that haven’t/probably won’t ever come West.

      The Witch and the Hundred Knight games are a little too action-heavy for me, but the Atelier games are smack dab in the middle of my radar. Enjoy yourself!

      • ThomasHansen says:

        Thanks for the reply. I think there’s quite a divide these days between fans of action-rpgs and turn-based rpgs haha. I like whatever, but I really loved The Witch and The Hundred Knight and it’s one of the major reasons I started learning Japanese (and I don’t mean just katakana like most people who play Japanese games lol), so I could play the sequel as well as other games. I can not wait for NISA to bring it over to Europe in 2019 or whatever, I need to play it now!

        The game’s soundtrack in my opinion is one of the major highlights. I don’t know if you’ve heard it already but it’s ridiculously good, imo at least. I sent Tenpei Sato a fanmail a month ago or so and he actually responded. So cool!

        • Kina says:

          Wow, that’s awesome. I love it when creators engage with their fans like that. I’m too shy to send anybody anything though ^^;;
          I’ve played a few ARPGs I really like and I find action combat systems really satisfying (when they work right). If/when I ever get a PS4 I will try Hundred Knight and see. It’s very pretty and colorful, I’ll give it that much.

  4. Davzz says:

    Ah well.

    I suppose this means I’ll probably enjoy the gameplay more in Zero/Ao when people actually get around to translating it.

    • Kina says:

      IMO Zero/Ao combat still needs to be about 20% faster to really hit that sweet spot, but it’s a step up from the earlier games for sure. I’m sure the Cold Steel series is even better than that, but… ….. …….yeah.

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