September 12, 2011
Read Part 1 Here
Whoops, I was a little later than promised in delivering this post! Anyway, like I said the other day, there are some pretty bodacious games on the very near horizon, due for release pretty soon, so pay attention and quick!
This post is part 2 of three-ish.
Rune Factory will stay a niche title for probably ever, since Harvest Moon is a niche game to begin with and incorporating adventure RPG elements just went and made it a niche of its niche. Not all Harvest Moon players like the Rune Factory series – but then again, there’s some overlap that perhaps makes up for it. There are definitely a good chunk of non-Harvest Moon players that play Rune Factory, and I saw a significant increase of that after Rune Factory 3’s release, which provided for the first time an excellently-executed and well-polished gameplay experience for the series.
(Which doesn’t mean that I didn’t like the previous games, because I sure did, but even a fan has to recognize when a game doesn’t have polish, and the RF series lacked it until 3.)
Let’s hope that Rune Factory: Tides of Destiny continues that trend of exponentially increasing the enjoyment level of the series. It’ll be sent to stores on September 27 and available on September 28 (if Natsume continues their past habit of their games being available the day after the announced date).
There are a lot of things that make Tides of Destiny different from previous titles in the series. For one, players finally have the option of playing as a male or female protagonist, although even that’s been given a plot-driven twist! Second – and this makes me think that ToD may draw in even more non-Harvest Moon fans than RF3 did – the actual farming and harvesting systems are much less emphasized now. You don’t even have your own field to plant on, really, as planting spots are created with a magic rod! And you don’t interact much with the crops themselves – their growth is seen to by the monster companions you’ve befriended.
Fighting and combat seems to be much improved. Weapons have some pretty impressive animations (and anyone already familiar with RF is already aware that there are tons of different weapons), and the ability to jump and attack from the air has been implemented.
Another change is that character portraits are no longer displayed as art work during dialogue, instead replaced with the characters’ polygonal models. This allows for animations and such during conversations, plus, these characters just look pretty.
Oh, I’m glad I could get a screenshot like that last one – a large part of this game is centered around getting quests from townsfolk, most of which are going to involve traveling to islands across the sea.
Care to take a guess as to what method of nautical navigation is used?
If you answered giant robot that looks like a walking island, you’re correct! And, naturally, we can’t have a game with giant robots that doesn’t also include battles against giant sea monsters! WHAT DOESN’T THIS GAME HAVE?!
In addition to everything covered here, some other plusses Tides of Destiny can boast are nicely animated anime cut scenes, and a varied selection of bachelorettes (and a few bachelors for the female protagonist) to woo. If RF3 was any indicator of how unique (and insane) the town NPCs can be, the lineup for this one is sure to provide a lot of entertainment.
Alrighty! Now for those shopping links.
Part three will be along in the next day or so~ (I’ve learned not to promise next-day posts any more! XD) It’s a much more widely recognized title than my darling little niche games parts 1 and 2 consisted of. Also, it’s being sold in this really rad bundle that is making fans of the series nearly foam at the mouth in anticipation to get their hands on it. It’s gold and shiny. Okay, I am really bad at giving hints without totally giving away what it is I’m hinting at.
Update: Was it too obvious? Part 3 is here!