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Fleshing out my PS2 RPG collection; need suggestions


#1 RKasa   The Artist Formerly Known as ブルー神羅 CAGiversary!   4448 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 02:19 PM

I'm looking for some good PS2 RPGs - preferably inexpensive ones - to help round out my collection. I already have (and/or have played) a fair number of RPGs (listed below), but there's a lot out there, and I'd like to know if there are any "must haves" that I'm missing.

I like turn-based, action, tactical/strategy, and funny RPGs. I also like simulations (a la Harvest Moon) and much prefer JRPGs to Western-style ones.

Here's what I've played:

Loved:
- Disgaea
- Dragon Quest VIII
- Final Fantasy X-2
- Front Mission 4

Liked:
- Dark Cloud 2
- Final Fantasy X
- Kingdom Hearts
- Kingdom Hearts II
- La Pucelle
- Okage: Shadow King

Didn't like:
- Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance and The Bard's Tale (just didn't like either of them)
- Dirge of Cerberus (bad gameplay, retcons)
- Final Fantasy XII (tedious; never finished)
- Growlanser Generations (didn't like the gameplay or voice acting)
- Makai Kingdom (GRID FREE, grr)
- Phantom Brave (see Makai Kingdom)
- Unlimited SaGa (no explanation needed)
- Xenosaga Ep. 1 (cutscenes too long; gameplay didn't make up for it)

Currently playing / in my backlog:
- Atelier Iris
- Disgaea 2
- Okami (if that counts)
- Persona 3
- Rogue Galaxy
- Samurai Legend Musashi
- Tales of Legendia
- Wild ARMs 5

My husband has a copy of Star Ocean: Til the End of Time, but I've no real interest in playing that, as I've already seen so much of it. Also, Grandia II could technically be lumped under "Liked" as I've played the Dreamcast version. I think that's everything.

#2 Solori   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   102 Posts   Joined 14.5 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 02:33 PM

Shadow Hearts: Covenant is my all-time favorite RPG so I would consider it a must-have.

I don't know what the price is these days though. (If you can't find Covenant then you might want to check out Shadow Hearts:From the New World. It isn't as good as Covenant but it is still a very good RPG, and you can definitely find FTNW for under $20.00 on Amazon).

#3 depascal22   Daddy Fat Sacks CAGiversary!   10195 Posts   Joined 17.1 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 02:46 PM

We have similar taste in RPGs. I love the Tales series so I'm going to recommend Tales of the Abyss. I haven't played Legendia but Abyss feels every bit as good as Symphonia.

Just wondering if you've played the PS1 RPGs also?

#4 typeRJ   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   643 Posts   Joined 14.7 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 03:36 PM

We have similar taste in RPGs. I love the Tales series so I'm going to recommend Tales of the Abyss. I haven't played Legendia but Abyss feels every bit as good as Symphonia.

Just wondering if you've played the PS1 RPGs also?


second that. Tales of the Abyss is a really good Tales game. Legendia isn't as good as the rest of the series....weaker story and pretty average voice acting.

my original suggestion would be Odin Sphere. keeps you in the game and i'd say it's one of the best action RPGs out there. but there is a lot of slowdown. not enough to make you hate the game or anything, it's just a little annoying. but don't let it stop you from playing. it's really damn good.

your backlog will help decide if you like the following games:

Digital Devil Saga 1 and 2
Devil Summoner
SMT Nocturne (expensive but had to throw it in)
Atelier Iris 2 and 3
Mana Khemia
Suikoden III (MAYBE V but i personally didn't like IV and Tactics)

#5 Lord Jezo   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   144 Posts   Joined 16.5 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 03:41 PM

Persona 3: FES comes out in 2 weeks for $30 and has 30 (I thnk) extra hours of gameplay in it on top of the original and more social links.

Could be awesome, I want to get it as the original costs $80 now and I want to throw my support at Atlus in hopes of them bringing Persona 4 stateside on the PS2.

#6 RKasa   The Artist Formerly Known as ブルー神羅 CAGiversary!   4448 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 04:37 PM

Solori: Thanks; I'll look into the series.

depascal: I've never played a Tales game. Symphonia is sitting around in my Gamecube stack.

typeRJ: Have no plans to pick up Odin Sphere (or GrimGrimoire) because the slidey animation that I've seen in trailers and whatnot is a huge turnoff (I'm rather picky about that sort of thing).

I am curious about the rest of the SMT series (even the expensive ones) and Mana Khemia, but yeah, I'll give Persona 3 and Atelier Iris a go first. Have long been curious about the Suikoden series but have never played any of the games.

Lord Jezo: Probably should've mentioned it, but Persona 3 FES is indeed on my "to buy" list, since I was going to play Persona 3 anyway ^_^

#7 CriscoKidd   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   112 Posts   Joined 17.1 Years Ago  

CriscoKidd

Posted 10 April 2008 - 04:59 PM

based on your list, I'd reccomend Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter. Fun game.

#8 Machine   Welcome to the Machine CAGiversary!   757 Posts   Joined 18.8 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 05:14 PM

I recommend the .hack/GU series and Okage. I also endorse Suikoden 3 and 5, the Shadow Hearts series, and the Persona/SMT games.

#9 Panda   It's Ms Panda to you. CAGiversary!   309 Posts   Joined 17.9 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 05:21 PM

I 3rd Suikoden III and Suikoden V. Leaning more towards Suikoden V than II though. Tactics was too much work for my taste, and IV was mediocore.

#10 squid   sweetdiculous CAGiversary!   326 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 05:24 PM

I second the .hack//G.U. trilogy. I haven't met a single person who didn't like them. Don't bother with the first series, however.
Shining Force Neo/EXA? ..I didn't care for them, but they might fit what you're looking for.

#11 thelonepig   Greasy Pork Pirates! CAGiversary!   6801 Posts   Joined 16.4 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 06:38 PM

Stella Deus for some SRPG fun!

#12 JEKKI   JEKKI WOO FOO FOO CAGiversary!   7044 Posts   Joined 18.4 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 06:42 PM

Save up your money for Shin Megami Tensei Nocturned and Digital Devil Saga 1+2!

seriously!! dont even question it, get these games!!!

also Shadow Hearts Covenant = my favorite PS2 game EVER!

so much so that I had to make THIS:

Posted Image

I also made a DDS one but it's ugly...

http://p3ters.devian...ystick-49652578

#13 Ryukahn   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   3668 Posts   Joined 15.6 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 07:20 PM

depascal: I've never played a Tales game. Symphonia is sitting around in my Gamecube stack.


Well, what did you think of the battle system that you saw in Star Ocean 3 while watching your husband play? If you thought it looked good, then you will probably like the Tales games. IMO Tales games are on par with Final Fantasy games, with both having good and bad parts, though the good far outweigh the bad.

It's also interesting that .hack//gu is getting some recommendations. The reviews I've read from game sites don't make them sound so good, though reviews on store sites seem to say they are pretty good.

#14 depascal22   Daddy Fat Sacks CAGiversary!   10195 Posts   Joined 17.1 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 07:54 PM

You should just crack open that copy of Tales of Symphonia and play through that. As long as you don't mind Collette yelling "Angel Feathers" every ten seconds during battle, you'll enjoy it more than any of the other games you haven't played yet. That'll also give you time to save up for Nocturne and DDS. Just my two cents.

#15 CriscoKidd   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   112 Posts   Joined 17.1 Years Ago  

CriscoKidd

Posted 10 April 2008 - 10:12 PM

You should just crack open that copy of Tales of Symphonia and play through that. As long as you don't mind Collette yelling "Angel Feathers" every ten seconds during battle, you'll enjoy it more than any of the other games you haven't played yet.


I would also agree with this. One of my favs from last gen.

Personally, I liked Symphonia, Paper Mario: TTYD, and Baten Kaitos Origins more than the vast majority of the PS2 library. Fire Emblem is pretty high up there too.

#16 RKasa   The Artist Formerly Known as ブルー神羅 CAGiversary!   4448 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 10 April 2008 - 10:15 PM

Yeah, I'll probably play through Symphonia before deciding whether or not I want to commit to the Tales series.

So .hack//GU's better than the first series? How do the two series overlap?

Also intrigued by the SRPGs mentioned (love that genre) and would like more details about those. What did/didn't you like?

Thanks so far, everyone ^_^

#17 Sarang01   My Use Name Is Saber CAGiversary!   5588 Posts   Joined 18.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 April 2008 - 02:24 AM

based on your list, I'd reccomend Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter. Fun game.


hugs Crisco. You and I are probably the few that like this game. I would recommend this game to the OP as well. GREAT gameplay for battles and so different then any game you've played because of the way they affect the rest of the game. Basically there are NO inn's, no sleeping like that, keeping your HP is dependent on how well you fight against the enemy in battles.
Crisco I'd recommend "Enchanted Arms" since you like BOF: DQ. It's not as good as DQ as the battle system is simplified but I think you'd like it since it's in the same vein. I just don't like how painfully linear the game is. There's no real overworld map to move around freely and you go from point a to b like FFX.
JEKKI how much would it cost if you made me a Shadow Hearts one?

#18 sparklecopy   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   489 Posts   Joined 17.3 Years Ago  

sparklecopy

Posted 11 April 2008 - 02:32 AM

do you have to play shadowhearts 1 to get into shadowhearts 2?

#19 thelonepig   Greasy Pork Pirates! CAGiversary!   6801 Posts   Joined 16.4 Years Ago  

Posted 11 April 2008 - 02:56 AM

Stella Deus for some SRPG fun!


Stella Deus reminds me a lot of the Record of Lodoss War anime, if you've seen any of that. My only complaint in the entire game is that the "super" attacks are somewhat underwhelming. The game has a load of additional sidequests and things as well.

It's grid-based and very fantasy-oriented. The story revolves around a group of people trying to save the world from a poison-like mist that is slowly enveloping everything while at the same time trying to stay a step ahead of the evil warlord bent on destroying the world and the religious zealots that think the mist has been sent by God to cleanse the world.

How many games did I just describe? :shock:

Save up your money for Shin Megami Tensei Nocturned and Digital Devil Saga 1+2!

seriously!! dont even question it, get these games!!!

also Shadow Hearts Covenant = my favorite PS2 game EVER!

so much so that I had to make THIS:


Very, very nice. :D

DDS1 & 2 are excellent games. If you enjoyed FFX, you'll know what to expect. They are much darker and the storyline is heavily into cannibalism.

So .hack//GU's better than the first series? How do the two series overlap?


.hack//GU is superior in just about every way, though I prefer the story of the first. I'm one of few that enjoyed all four of the original games and didn't feel that they got repetitive. GU takes place several years after the first series and you can recruit and interact with some of the original cast. Knowledge of the first game is not requisite.

hugs Crisco. You and I are probably the few that like this game. I would recommend this game to the OP as well. GREAT gameplay for battles and so different then any game you've played because of the way they affect the rest of the game. Basically there are NO inn's, no sleeping like that, keeping your HP is dependent on how well you fight against the enemy in battles.
Crisco I'd recommend "Enchanted Arms" since you like BOF: DQ. It's not as good as DQ as the battle system is simplified but I think you'd like it since it's in the same vein. I just don't like how painfully linear the game is. There's no real overworld map to move around freely and you go from point a to b like FFX.
JEKKI how much would it cost if you made me a Shadow Hearts one?


Uh-oh, it sounds like I'm actually going to have to try Enchanted Arms. I found BoF: DQ to be a breath of fresh air (pun intended). The game is brutal though. I love the option of being able to restart whenever you would like and being able to maintain some of your stats. You also get to see more of the story as certain scenes are unlocked only after you've restarted.

do you have to play shadowhearts 1 to get into shadowhearts 2?


No, but you'll miss out on a few jokes. The required parts of the storyline in 1 are summarized very well in 2.

#20 Sarang01   My Use Name Is Saber CAGiversary!   5588 Posts   Joined 18.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 April 2008 - 08:27 AM

Join the club lone. I think we're the few that like BOF. I'm frankly amazed it dared to do the inn thing. THAT alone was huge, having to depend on the success of your battles to keep your hp. Some may argue Strategy but I'm talking a whole RPG, not just a field battle in a strat where afterwards your hp is regenerated.

#21 Sofa King Kool   Is srsly... CAGiversary!   4453 Posts   Joined 16.0 Years Ago  

Sofa King Kool

Posted 11 April 2008 - 11:59 AM

Not exactly an RPG, but play Shadow of the Colossus if you haven't yet. If you don't, you're a bad person.

#22 RKasa   The Artist Formerly Known as ブルー神羅 CAGiversary!   4448 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 April 2008 - 12:58 PM

thelonepig: Stella Deus sounds up my alley (and that plotline does sound familiar; HMM), so I'll keep an eye out for it. BoF: DQ is starting to sound interesting as well. It's a dungeon crawler, right? Have never really played any of those but I'm willing to give a good one a shot.

Sofa King Kool: Yep, I've played Shadow of the Colossus (and ICO). I don't consider it an RPG at all, but a lot of RPG people seem to like it as it seems to get mentioned in every other RPG rec thread I see here :razz:

#23 kainzero   scv good to go sir CAGiversary!   3930 Posts   Joined 16.5 Years Ago  

kainzero

Posted 11 April 2008 - 09:25 PM

funny, i looked at this thread and the list of rpgs classified in gamefaqs and i'm like, man.

this wasn't a particular strong generation for RPGs, was it?

you might like Valkyrie Profile 2. i kinda did but it was somehow disappointing. i can't really explain it.

the only other RPGs i have for the PS2 are Radiata Stories (not really worth it) and Romancing SaGa which you probably wouldn't right.

symphonia is awesome though. play that.

kinda sucks that you didn't like phantom brave. i liked the story.

#24 RKasa   The Artist Formerly Known as ブルー神羅 CAGiversary!   4448 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 April 2008 - 10:27 PM

I liked everything about Phantom Brave except the gameplay itself. The whole "grid-free" thing drove me nuts. It was a bit more refined in Makai Kingdom, but that game's story wasn't nearly as good and the English voice acting was atrocious (switched to the Japanese voices very early on). And it was still grid-free.

#25 CriscoKidd   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   112 Posts   Joined 17.1 Years Ago  

CriscoKidd

Posted 11 April 2008 - 11:02 PM

hugs Crisco. You and I are probably the few that like this game. I would recommend this game to the OP as well. GREAT gameplay for battles and so different then any game you've played because of the way they affect the rest of the game. Basically there are NO inn's, no sleeping like that, keeping your HP is dependent on how well you fight against the enemy in battles.
Crisco I'd recommend "Enchanted Arms" since you like BOF: DQ. It's not as good as DQ as the battle system is simplified but I think you'd like it since it's in the same vein. I just don't like how painfully linear the game is. There's no real overworld map to move around freely and you go from point a to b like FFX.
JEKKI how much would it cost if you made me a Shadow Hearts one?


Alas, I don't have a 360 and don't plan to get one any time soon, even though there are some very good looking games for the system. Maybe when I finish my PS2 backlog(and MS comes out with an even cheaper, more reliable model).

The replenishing hp with only items took a little getting used to, but I didn't mind the no inn thing because I usually use them as little as possible. It just made managing money and items more important, as well as ambushing enemies however you can.

What I love about the game is the battle system. You fight with each of the characters in different ways and they are all fun. The way you have to move to attack certainly reminds me of SRPGs.

I also like the characters and the story, even if it isn't super epic like some other rpgs, but you know what? It doesn't have to be. And I really dig the cel shading.


To the OP: I would classify BOF as a dungeon crawler, but I would certainly say the same of Dark Cloud 2(another game I had a lot of fun with).

#26 thelonepig   Greasy Pork Pirates! CAGiversary!   6801 Posts   Joined 16.4 Years Ago  

Posted 11 April 2008 - 11:22 PM

Alas, I don't have a 360 and don't plan to get one any time soon, even though there are some very good looking games for the system. Maybe when I finish my PS2 backlog(and MS comes out with an even cheaper, more reliable model).

The replenishing hp with only items took a little getting used to, but I didn't mind the no inn thing because I usually use them as little as possible. It just made managing money and items more important, as well as ambushing enemies however you can.

What I love about the game is the battle system. You fight with each of the characters in different ways and they are all fun. The way you have to move to attack certainly reminds me of SRPGs.

I also like the characters and the story, even if it isn't super epic like some other rpgs, but you know what? It doesn't have to be. And I really dig the cel shading.


To the OP: I would classify BOF as a dungeon crawler, but I would certainly say the same of Dark Cloud 2(another game I had a lot of fun with).


The one complaint I have of BoF: DQ is the sound effects. I ended up muting the game every time I ran into a battle.

Also to the OP: BoF can be had for under $10 if you look around. FYE has it new for $10 and used for $8. Stella Deus can be a bit more difficult. It's an Atlus game, but you should be able to find a copy in the $20 - $25 range if you look hard enough.

#27 CriscoKidd   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   112 Posts   Joined 17.1 Years Ago  

CriscoKidd

Posted 12 April 2008 - 12:43 AM

The one complaint I have of BoF: DQ is the sound effects. I ended up muting the game every time I ran into a battle.

Also to the OP: BoF can be had for under $10 if you look around. FYE has it new for $10 and used for $8. Stella Deus can be a bit more difficult. It's an Atlus game, but you should be able to find a copy in the $20 - $25 range if you look hard enough.



you know, in all my rambling, I forgot to mention the part of the game I don't like:

the save system.

I prefer very little restrictions wrt saving, which is one reason I like my ds so much. Doesn't stop me from liking the game, but there is no way I'm playing BoF unless I know I have an hour or two to spare for sure.

#28 RKasa   The Artist Formerly Known as ブルー神羅 CAGiversary!   4448 Posts   Joined 16.1 Years Ago  

Posted 12 April 2008 - 12:35 PM

To the OP: I would classify BOF as a dungeon crawler, but I would certainly say the same of Dark Cloud 2(another game I had a lot of fun with).

*nods* I wasn't sure if DC2 fell into that category; really liked that game as well.

Also to the OP: BoF can be had for under $10 if you look around. FYE has it new for $10 and used for $8. Stella Deus can be a bit more difficult. It's an Atlus game, but you should be able to find a copy in the $20 - $25 range if you look hard enough.

I'll keep an eye out for both of them. And $20-25 sounds reasonable for an out-of-print Atlus game ;)