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A_Nonny_Moose
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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:55 pm

Well then, Balance Valley. Got there and it seems Crest is dead, so that's that fucked. There's two people left there. One is Crest's apprentice, Lin, and the other is a talking owl. Lin's been ill since Crest died for some reason, so I took Doctor Dell (who's a duck) to see her. Apparently she got poised by some mist or something. Whatever, the doctor can't sure her.

But, there's this special food that will cure her. A chef in the future makes it, so I have to rebuild Balance Valley so that he will exist so I can get it from him. The georama's a little different this time. Instead of just a flat space, there's 4 plateaus, and the height of each one changes when you build stuff on it. So I have to build the place up and make sure everything stays level.

The dungeon for this part is Starlight Canyon. It's nothing special.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sun May 02, 2010 3:17 am

Well, the second minigame has been introduced. I went through the dungeon as far as I could before bothering with the Georama, just to get all the geostones I could. But I got to a point where the game wouldn't let me advance until I helped Lin.

So I built up Balance Valley, which in the future is the location of Starlight Temple. I went to see Lao Chao to get him to make his mircale dish to cure Lin, but he needed a special flower which is extinct in that time to make it. God knows how he came up with the recipe in the first place if the flower is extinct, but whatever.

So I go and look for the flower, and for some unfathomable reason it is growing on the top of a bird's head. To get it from the bird I have to help the bird get rid of some weird thing near her nest. The weird thing is a time distortion.

And so I am introduced to Golf. Or Spheda, a the game calls it. You use a club to hit a time fragment into the time distortion to get rid of it. The distortions can be red or blue, and the fragment/ball changes colour between red and blue each time it hits something. It has to be the opposite colour to the distortion or it won't go in.

It's very fucking frustrating to say the least. Every dungeon floor has a Spheda game on it too, once you defeat all the monsters. If you complete it you get a medal and an extra treasure chest which contains a decent prize. The only one I got so far had a Level Up Powder, which instantly boosts a weapon up by one level.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sun May 02, 2010 4:16 am

When I did my playthrough, I skipped all that golf shit.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sun May 02, 2010 4:19 am

I remember enjoying it last time I played. Not sure about now though.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sun May 02, 2010 5:32 am

It stinks. This whole tedious game stinks.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sun May 02, 2010 5:43 am

I'm still liking it more than DQ8. I prefer the real time combat to the turn based combat, I prefer leveling up the weapons as opposed the characters, I like the georama element, I like the invention system more than the alchemy pot (although the factory in Rogue Galaxy beats them both). And so on. The graphics and art style aren't as nice though.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sun May 02, 2010 5:49 am

I'd like the real time combat more if it wasn't so stiff. That's one of the problems that carried over to RG(although RG handled it much better thankfully). in DC, it's just a handful of whacks automatically directed to one direction. The whole game's just tedious as hell. If the dungeons weren't so boring it'd be a hundred times better.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Tue May 04, 2010 10:12 pm

Finished the Starlight Canyon. There was a piss easy boss battle to do at a lighthouse against that guy with the silver hair from the intro. You know, the one who killed Monica's dad. He also had some weird mad scientist guy with green skin with him, called Jaming.

Crest was brought back in the future, and I completely finished the georama since there were no geostones hidden in the bit I can't access yet. Balance Valley is probably my least favourite of the georamas. There's not much creativity involved because you only have 4 separated platforms to work with. One of them ended up completely empty apart from loads of trees which I used to balance it out.

Anyway, Crest tells me that Griffon is 10'000 years in the past. The Atlamillia can't go back that far, so I'm off the Luna Labs to see if they can find a way. Of course, I'll have to rebuild it first. But that's okay, since it's my favourite georama of the game. It's on the coast and everything is built on wooden platforms in the ocean shallows.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Thu May 06, 2010 4:13 pm

Right, Veniccio Coast. Our dungeon for this part of the game is Ocean Roar Cave, and the side characters are Pau and Shingala. Shingala's a baby sea dragon that got separated from the herd, and Pau is a rabbit person. There's a lot of those in this game. If I remember right, in the first game the rabbits came from the moon (which explains why there's a lot of them at the moon temple in this game).

Shingala ran off and so did Pau, to look for some medicine or something. So I go through the dungeon a few levels, and find a big mural showing the moon crashing to Earth. Apparently there's a lot of them around, but no one knows what they mean. FORESHADOWING. I also find Shingala, who has a mind control device on his head. So I have to go to Luna Lab to see if they can fix it, which means starting up the Georama.

Everything is build on wooden platforms, which means it costs a fucking lot just to get the ground level down. But it's still my favourite area of the game.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Thu May 06, 2010 4:43 pm

Mine too. Despite being tedious as usual, for some reason the dungeon didn't bore me as much as the other ones did and I liked the future version of the place.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Thu May 06, 2010 5:19 pm

I like because I think the Georama is the most creative one. Certainly the nicest looking one.

Ballance Valley was just a massive failure in all regards really. There's no incentive to do anything other than the bare minimum because the land is so awkward that it just doesn't feel worth it. All four platforms are separate, so you can't walk around the place. Splitting up the area also means you have a lot less space, so you can't really design a nice layout for it. It's just a mess.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Mon May 10, 2010 4:41 pm

Got the medicine. Had a boss fight with that Jaming guy. MASSIVE EXPOSITORY CUT SCENE ENSUES.

At Luna Labs they're building a time travel train to take me back 10'000 years. Jaming's grandson is helping them because he turned over a new leaf after I beat him. He perfected some technology that was never perfected in Monica's history, so we're changing shit all over the place.

Then the rebel forces in the west come under attack from Griffon, so we talk to the rebel leader. It's Elena, who happens to be Max's mother. Turns out she was from the future originally, and she's leading the rebels against Griffon. Griffon has an Atlamillia too, a yellow one, which is what makes him so powerful.

Dunno why his stone allows him to manipulate time and history and people from 10'000 years in the past while mine just goes forward in time 100 years. Griffon wanted the other two stones as well. Monica's dad had the blue one, but the red one didn't exist in the future. So Elena went back in time to find it, and Max's father had it, and they fell in love, and so on. Then she had to go back to her time.

Also the stones choose their owners apparently, and they're guiding everyone to some great, or something. It's all a bit wishy-washy.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Tue May 11, 2010 4:51 am

This story sounds really messy.
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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Tue May 11, 2010 5:20 pm

Well, it's heavily based around time travel, so that's pretty much a given.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Sat May 15, 2010 3:00 pm

Took some time out to build up Monica's weapons. She has way more swords than Max has wrenches and hammers. I've just had the one weapon for him since the start of the game, but I have 3 different swords for Monica. I haven't even bought any weapons, I just find them or get given them.

That's quite common in this game though. I've only had to buy repair powder two or three times because most necessary items you tend to find quite a lot of in the dungeons.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Tue Oct 11, 2011 5:55 pm

I've just started my playthrough, and I'm not really sold if I'm honest. Graphics are all right, but the art design isn't as strong as Toriyama's designs in DQ8, but the dungeons, dear god, the dungeons...

Is it just me or are they really boring? DQVIII's were always fun, but these just feel like grinding, and I hate the level design - would I be correct in saying they feel randomly generated? - the real time combat is a nice idea, but the controls are horribly clunky (Max will sometimes do a nice leaping attack, but only when he feels like it) so you can end up swinging in vain at an enemy just out of hit range while another enemy off screen is hitting you, all through no fault of your own.

Basically I've just finished the first dungeon, and I'm not really impressed so far. It feels like a very average PS2 era RPG rather than one of the highlights of the genre, though I'm hoping it's a slow burner and that I'll warm to it as I uncover more of the intricacies of the admittedly intriguing weapon levelling system.
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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:25 pm

The levels are randomly generated, yes.

The second dungeon introduces town building, which is really the game's distinguishing feature.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Wed Oct 12, 2011 2:07 am

It's a dungeon crawler at heart. Moose is right about geoshperes and town building. It's the games strongest part. It makes you keep wanting to go into the dungeon and find more. Plus the weapon system is awesome. Level 5 is reall good in that regard. I really enjoyed it in Rogue Galaxy. It was kinda like the alchemist pot in DQVIII.
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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Fri Nov 11, 2011 8:29 am

Did you abandon this?

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:04 pm

Yeah, sold it. Tried to get on with it, spent twenty or so hours slogging through it, got as far as meeting Griffin the first time and... well, I just didn't want to play anymore. The characters were two dimensional, the story uninspiring, the dungeons and combat insanely repetitive. I sold it on eBay for the same money I paid for it though, so I didn't lose out in that regard.

It wasn't a patch on DQVIII.
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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Fri Nov 11, 2011 2:12 pm

I just realised I stopped this without finishing it (this playthrough I mean, finished it a couple time before). I think I got up to that mountain stage and gave up. That area always bored me. The Georama was so dull in that place.

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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Fri Nov 11, 2011 6:32 pm

Yeah, the one where you had to use mud to plug the geysers before you could build on? That was a pain. My biggest gripe with the game was the dungeons though; the combat isn't strong enough to carry the game, yet you spend at least 60% of your time crawling through randomly generated levels that all still feel the same. It was just boring.

It's especially odd because I rarely sell my games. The fact that I was happy to let Chronicle go shows just how disappointing I found it.
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PostSubject: Re: Moose plays Dark Chronicle   Fri Nov 11, 2011 11:48 pm

The georama carried the game for me. I liked the combat though, and the randomly generated dungeons never bothered me. Then again I expected all that because I played Dark Cloud first and enjoyed it, and Dark Chronicle improved upon it in every way.

Dark Cloud had a thirst meter, which would deplete as you ran around the dungeons, and you needed to drink water to refill it. It served no other purpose than to annoy the player, I swear.

Plus I liked the all the extra stuff in Chronicle, even Spheda. Although I never ever bothered with Monica's badges.

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