Tacticular Cancer: We'll have your balls

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Touhou Labyrinth of Touhou: Hardcore PC dungeon-crawler - See OP for links etc.

Discussion in 'jRPG Weeaboo Discussion' started by Crooked Bee, Jun 16, 2011.

  1. aweighgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    thanks for clarifying that friend!
     
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  2. Celeritygender: ⚧ Takes 1337 hours to realise it's shit. Village Idiot Possibly Retarded

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    This game has actual tactics and interesting bosses, it is nothing like Derpest Dungeon.
     
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  3. aweighgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    i trust your tastes celerity. you like wizardry, and you (i assume since you're playing it) like elminage. that's enough for me. i'll give touhou another whirl. it's just that the first time i started it i was expecting something more traditional, with char-gen and loot and shit. i just needed to re-acclimate my expectations.

    question: is it necessary to read the dialog? are there puzzles or some shit that i can only solve by reading what the chars say? i have absolutely no intention of reading a single line of dialog from the characters. i mash enter on that shit as fast as humanly possible.
     
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  4. Celeritygender: ⚧ Takes 1337 hours to realise it's shit. Village Idiot Possibly Retarded

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    Before you get the wrong idea, my experience with this game consists of someone else using it as an example of good and interesting boss battle mechanics, so I looked at his channel which is full of videos about it and challenge gamer videos in general. So I downloaded it but didn't actually start yet. It definitely does have interesting boss fights, as for the everything else? I don't fucking know.
     
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  5. aweighgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    as you no doubt have seen for yourself there is non-stop gibberish dialog right from the get go. i actually wrote an autohotkey script to make the confirm key rapid-fire. ;)
     
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  6. Damned Registrationsgender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Furry Weeaboo Nazi Nihilist

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    Pretty sure holding down one of the buttons you don't normally use (shift maybe?) does that anyways. Character dialogue isn't really important, it might make it more obvious how to solve some of the later puzzles or how to recruit certain characters, but for the most part if you just keep scouring the map for event icons you'll get through.
     
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  7. Suicidalgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    I meant it in the way that both games have recruitable characters with specific preset skills. That was my only point of comparison. Having played both games it's obvious that LoT undeniably has far superior gameplay than DD.

    Don't think it's necessary and the game can be bad at explaining what you need to do anyway so it's easier to just read the wiki for quest descriptions.
     
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  8. Suicidalgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    :necro:

    I've been spending the past several weeks playing pretty much only this game and nothing else (except for popamole multiplayer shit with friends) and have finally completed the main quest (didn't do any of the post-game stuff yet)

    After enjoying the second game so much and learning that the first one has a lot of things lacking compared to its sequel I was worried I wouldn't like it but in the end LoT1 is still a very good game and I highly recommend it to any codexer who enjoyed LoT2 and was thinking of playing this one, because the core gameplay is still the same and that's all that matters.

    A short sorta summary/comparison of both games:

    -Both games are very good at what they do and by that I mean both provide you with a series of interesting and challenging combat scenarios that you have to beat by actually using your brain - building an appropriate team for the situation, creating and following a battle plan, using the right skills at the right moment and etc.

    -I remember seeing some comments here (with which I am inclined to agree) that LoT2 is not really an RPG/crawler, but rather a sort of tactical combat game. In that case LoT1 is even less of an RPG because compared to its sequel it has no classes, no learnable skills, no item shops, no crafting, less variety in equipment and leveling different character stats has less of an effect.

    -Because of the above, individual character customization in LoT1 was a lot less interesting than in the sequel. Both games have very interesting party customization mechanics because you need to create a team of 12 people so you need to analyze which characters you need, pair them with characters that can compliment their strengths, figure out who will do what in which situation. However, in LoT2 customizing individual characters was also very fun because of how much different stuff you could do - classes, stat points, skill points, equipment, buff items. While playing LoT2 myself I also watched a few let's plays and the people playing did some weird shit, like using one of the healers with significant investment in defense stats in place of a front line tank, or equipping the team with items that make attacks cause poisoning instead of bringing a dedicated poisoner to a fight - and it worked. Sadly, there's a lot less of this in LoT1.

    -In LoT1 a lot more effort was put into making the dungeons themselves - different dungeon floors are a lot more varied, most have some sort of gimmick or pattern to them, almost every floor has a unique visual background and even different music and even random enemies can be a threat to your party and can kill you if you're not careful (unlike LoT2, where pretty much all non-boss and non-elite enemies usually died from a single AoE fart and were little more than food for your party) and force you to reload (again, unlike LoT2, where dying just warped you back to town and you could continue where you left off). Sadly, this effort is misplaced, because the dungeons in the LoT series don't offer much compared to the Wizardry series, or Etrian Odyssey series or many other crawlers - there are no traps, no secrets, no interesting events, no sense of danger. I'm sure people don't play LoT games for their shitty dungeons, they play them for their interesting combat mechanics and encounters, which they do better than the vast majority of games in the genre.

    -While not having the ability to buy/create items is something I consider a minus, I gotta admit that it made finding items in the dungeon a lot more exciting and for a long time I didn't have enough good items to outfit my party with, so I had to think who gets what item before going to a boss encounter.

    -About the bosses - I think LoT1 had some of the most interesting bosses in the entire series, for example the puppet master girl, which you fight very early in the game and for which you need to come up with a strategy and there are several things in that fight that you can play around, the fight with the 3 mages in the mid game, which required precise debuff and status effect management from your part, the roided up shopkeeper dude from LoT2, who not only fights kinda like your party but also hinders your ability to switch character positions by draining your stamina, which you use every time you want to do a formation change, and the final boss, which I liked a lot more than LoT2's final boss, not only because it was a more challenging and fun battle (a shame that the game kinds fucks you over unfairly on this one because the shitty interface withholds crucial information), but also fighting a Lovecraftian nightmare wizard felt a lot more climactic than a talking sword with a mustache.

    -On the other hand LoT1 has a lot more bosses that were simple checks of whether or not your party level is adequate and just spammed a couple of attacks over and over requiring little thought on your end to defeat. LoT2 had a lot less of those and even the generic monster bosses had some sort of trick you had to figure out how to deal with in order to succeed. + LoT2 had more different bosses overall if you count only the main story dungeons.

    -Speaking of shitty interface, it does indeed suck ass. I didn't like the interface in LoT2 but at least that was serviceable and provided you with all required information. In LoT1 it's much worse and you are kept in the the dark about most things. The game doesn't tell you anything - whether the enemy is weak/resistant to an attack you are using, how much HP the enemies have, how long the status effects last for. Sometimes it flat out lies about damage numbers, and I had many cases of, for example, my character having 8k hp, then an attack hitting me for 7224 and my character suddenly dying. What the fuck happened to the other 776 then? And you may think that not showing enemy HP is normal and most dungeon crawlers are also like that - most dungeon crawlers also don't have enemies that completely change their behavior once their hp hits a certain mark and you have to have a defensive formation set up THE EXACT MOMENT IT HAPPENS IN ORDER TO NOT DIE, or, even better, enemies whose HP won't even drop below a certain point until you fulfill certain conditions. I fucking guarantee you that if you go into the final boss fight of LoT1 without a guide you will never succeed unless you are a few days worth of grinding above the boss's level because of the things the game expects you to do without telling. I actually had to subtract the damage I did manually and record everything in an excel sheet in order to anticipate and prepare for this kind of bullshit. Other than that there's also minor annoying shit, like the game asking you "are you sure" twice if you want to leave the dungeon, characters not having names over portraits (luckily if you download the translated version of the game it comes with custom portraits that fix this little problem).

    -LoT1 does feel more grindy than the sequel - pretty sure characters require more XP to level and because killing the random encounters is sort of a problem compared to LoT2, you get XP slower. Fortunately, if you don't mind using your brain, you can get through the game with minimal grinding (I only had to grind a bit before the last 2 major bosses because according to the wiki I was pretty severely underleveled), however...

    -If you want to get anything in the post-game then prepare to grind a lot, and I mean really a lot. That's where I feel this game drops the ball the most compared to its sequel. The post game in LoT2 was excellently designed, because it required minimal grinding to access and to beat. IIRC you are expected to be at level 100 when fighting the final boss in LoT2 and then the first post-game boss is level 115 or something (you can easily kill it even lower than that). After you kill it, you get access to most of the post-game areas and can explore them and by the time you are done exploring the available areas you will be at a high enough level to fight the next several bosses. It was still hard as fuck but it was hard because the enemies were very tricky and you needed a good strategy for each of them. In LoT1, however, in order to even gain access to the new post-game areas you are expected to either: kill about 20 enhanced bosses, which requires a lot of grinding, beat the boss rush, which also requires grinding or acquire every available piece of gear, some of which only drops from enemies with a small chance, which also requires... you get the point. Not only that, I've looked at some of the levels of post-game bosses in the wiki and honestly it kinda saps my motivation to even attempt it. In LoT2 I beat the post-game true final boss at level 160. Here the levels of the final enemies go as high as 400-500, which is fucking absurd.

    Despite its problems (more numerous than in the sequel), I thoroughly enjoyed LoT1 and having played both games it was really interesting to see how much the developers improved the game for the sequel. In LoT1 I sometimes got the feeling that the devs were not sure what they were doing and a lot of effort was spent on a broader range of features - the dungeons are more elaborate, there's a lot more different music (and to the game's credit, I thought it was pretty good especially compared to the average dungeon crawler's approach to soundtracks, that is a few ambient tunes for the exploration and a few 40 second loops for the combat), more useless text, more grinding. In LoT2 they decided to focus on the most important things, something the game offers that not many others do - that's why the bosses are more numerous, there's less grinding and time wasting in-between boss fights, there's more customization and party building options, there's improved combat with the addition of new status effects, more types of damage and for that they deserve my respect. I really hope we'll see a LoT3 or a new, but similar, game from these people, whoever they may be, because clearly they are more capable of providing the player with fun turn-based combat RPG-likes than most professional game companies.

    Well, this post turned out to be a bit longer than I thought...
     
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  9. CryptRatgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    I actually like the approach of LoT1 of giving no info about the enemy and especially not to know its current HPs (I can understand that seeing the level of bosses in LoT2 comes with how hard mode works). I'm not saying it's the good formula for every game out there but I thought it was fun here.
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2016
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  10. Crooked Beegender: ⚧ wide-wandering bee Patron

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    Suicidal Cool, thanks for your impressions. You should review both games for the Codex ;) Imagine the butthurt + they could really use some additional exposure.

    But yeah, I generally agree with your impressions. At the same time, I acknowledge CryptRat's agenda too: the way LoT1 provides feedback (or rather does not provide feedback) is basically inherited from older dungeon crawlers - which is a totally different design philosophy compared to that behind tactical combat games, where precise feedback is really one of the most important and fundamental things. Interestingly, both approaches (in LoT1 and LoT2) actually work; it all depends on which you prefer.

    I also think LoT1 is pretty great - but you should start with it first, otherwise you are bound to be spoiled by LoT2.
     
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  11. Suicidalgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    I have no problem with the game withholding information if we're talking about a traditional style crawler where most enemies are very primitive. However, I think in both LoT games the combat is closer to that of a tactical game than a traditional crawler so the importance of feedback increases dramatically because otherwise you have a bunch of behind the scenes bullshit going on in a fight and you have no way of dealing with it. As I said, I don't think the final boss is beatable without a guide for this very reason because of the way its sorta-invulnerability works and if you had at least had info about enemy health bars then it would still be a puzzle, but at least possible to figure out.

    Also I disagree with you about the order these games should be played. I think a new player should start with the 2nd one since at least it bothers to somewhat explain the mechanics like character order, switching and etc. and it's also a bit easier in the beginning than LoT1. LoT1, meanwhile, just drops you in blind, says "good luck, faggot" and proceeds to stomp on your balls with a metal-plated army boot.

    As for reviewing the games, I dunno... I don't consider myself a good writer + since I'm an unwashed Lithuanian potato farmer, my texts are usually riddled with spelling and grammar mistakes. On the other hand, the opportunity to trigger the locals sounds very lucrative. I'll think about it and drop you a PM if you would like.
     
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  12. Crooked Beegender: ⚧ wide-wandering bee Patron

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    Suicidal I don't actually disagree with you on both counts - however, as someone who played LoT1 first and absolutely loved it and thought it superior combat-wise to any other "blobber" out there, I just wanted to say that LoT1's design philosophy works too (and has a certain tradition behind it) - even if it's not perfect from a tactical combat game point of view.

    And do think about doing a review. Don't worry about your grammar etc. - we can edit it. You could just build on your posts in this thread and expand and structure them into a review - introducing these games and explaining why they are worth playing/unique, what they do well (and what one shouldn't expect from them), and how LoT1 compares to LoT2 - and basically that would be enough. So - do drop me a PM if you make up your mind about this.
     
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