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Lantis and SK's Top Dumbest RPG Game Elements
By: Lantis | Published: May 16, 2008 22:00 pm | RPG Maker


As you read this, me and SK are playing through Final Fantasy Tactics Advance. Got it on a big screen and are just chillin'. Well, SK is finding out for the first time how retarded the laws function of this game is. In fact, some really really unfortunate things have been happening to him in this game due to the laws.

Well, I have also been playing through FF Crisis Core and have noticed how dumbe the random slots are in it. So, now we are making a list of the top ten most retarded game elements in videogames today. We actually haven't picked which elements should be in what place yet, as we are having this discussion even as I type.

With that said, here are the ones we're nominating. (Nothing was nominated that we didn't both agree on to at least some degree):

The Laws of Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced - These laws take all the fun out of game. In fact, some of it just makes the game OVERLY frustrating. There are laws that are so vague that you end up breaking them without even knowing it. And as you get more yellow cards, the punishment just gets worse, to the point that you can get permanent stat down effects to speed, attack, defense, ect. There was even one fight that SK tried were you couldn't use swords. Well, forgetting this, he hit the FINAL ENEMY in the fight with a sword and killed it, which means he should have won right? ... No. He game over'd because it was the protagonist and he got a red card and was imprisoned. There are even laws which prohibit you from even doing damage to a certain type of enemy. How on earth are you suppose to get around that? This does not make the game more strategic; it just makes it stupid and obnoxious. There were even some fights (including the final boss battle; OMG!) in which SK was prevented from healing or otherwise supporting his characters either by item or by spell. SK, with an expression of clear aggravation on his face, eventually commented, "Does this mean that it is against the law in Ivalice to show kindness to someone?!"
There are a few places that don't have judges or laws. These places play just like the FFT for PS1. These fights are genuinely fun and are a breath of freh air. The laws have almost made SK quit this game twice already and I can't blame him. In fact, I can't word enough how much the laws function hurts the game. Also, you miss way too damn much in this game. Even magic spells miss frequently.

Slots in Final Fantasy VII Crisis Core - As stated in a previous thread, Crisis Core is a wonderful game ... nay, a masterpiece. But there is one thing that is just driving me ape shit. Slots .... The entire game is based off of the worst element in any RPG. A RPG is based off of strategic planning and analyzing your foe. Slots make for chance attacks and therefore is virtually the complete opposite concept to what RPG's should be about.
In Crisis Core, EVERYTHING is based off of slots. You get summon materia, but you can't use it when you want to. Instead, you got to just hope that you get the summon's head to show up on the slots before you will cast it. Limit Breaks? The exact same. Even leveling up your character is based on slots and not through fighting (you have to get three 7's). To me, this slots function is basically taking a good game and breaking its legs with a steel bat.
What's worse, you can't control the slots in any way. Think of Tifa's limit break and how it would be if you could not decide when the slots stop spinning; that's Crisis Core, but with much more important things than just a limit break. As a side note, WAY too many enemies in CC have death spells. In any other Final Fantasy title, that's fine because you will have other party members available to revive. But in an RPG were there's only one party member? That's just retarded.

The "Doom Counter" in Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter - In the game, Ryu has some unidentifiable guage that is constantly raising as you attack in battle and even as you walk around. If this counter reaches 100%, you game over ... period. This puts way too much unecessary pressure on you as the player. In fact, you will game over so much that the game has the option to let you start the whole thing over with your current stats. You will likely start your game over multiple times if you ever expect to beat it. It ruins the replay value instantly.

Doing random shiz in Dragon Quest 8 - This game should have been re-named "Errand Quest 8." You had to do so much petty bullshit on the side that had nothing to do with the story that it would drown the game in utter boredom. I'm sure that anyone who was around the Mag when this game came out has already heard this from me so I'm not going to go on an entire spill on it. It is definitely worth a nomination.

One on One fighting in Thousand Arms - The battle system in general was pretty damn dumb. You had three party memebers, ... but only one could fight at a time while the other two just sat in the back of the screen picking their nose. This makes no sense and is just an obviously bad idea. While Thousand Arm was a pretty good RPG overall, this was just one aspect that was incredibly hard to over look.

The last virus core hunt in .Hack: Quarentine - In this game you have to collect "virus cores" to unlock some of the storyline dungeons that you have to visit. In general virus core hunting isn't so bad as, most of the time, you will already have the necessary cores in your inventory ready to go.
But for the last dungeon in Quarantine, you won't have a single required core handy, ... and what's more, for this particular dungeon you must go on an hours-long quest to find and obtain these damn cores.
Also, getting cores is usually hard. You have to get a enemy's HP so low, then use "data drain", which is a skill that you can only use so much before you start losing experience and can even flat out game over. Even if you data drained the correct enemy, you might not even get the virus core you want; it's random. It's almost like a desperate plea from Bandai saying, "Please, oh please, play our game just a bit longer." This is kind of the same reason that Dragon - er I mean, Errand - Quest 8 is on this list.

Leveling up in Final Fantasy 2 - This isn't really too horrible of a setback, but it is really kind of dumb. While I respect Squaresoft for their attempt at making a completely new way to level up, the system of leveling up in FF2 just wasn't up to par. A specific stat would go up based on what actions were stressed in a fight. For instance, if you took a bunch of damage in the fight, you have a chance of getting your HP to go up. If you used mostly melee attacks, your attack could go up. Magic spells would increase MP or Intelligence. I
In the end, if you didn't learn to cheat this system, the game was really kind of hard. You had to spend time casting spells on yourself and beating yourself silly to really get up to par. And even after the many hours of random fighting that you are sure to do, on a side note the final boss was extremely difficult. The only real way to beat him is by finding one or both of the Blood Swords, which will drain HP at a percent. Without these weapons, the final boss is almost unbeatable.

The slow-paced fighting in Xenosaga II - LONG BATTLES .... Hitting random fights in Xenosaga II was almost just way too much to take, as they are agonizingly slow even for a turn-based RPG. I mean, there had been entire fights in Final Fantasy Tactics that were shorter. It just seemed to take forever just for one character or enemy to perform his action, and if you didn't develop a knack for the hitting the enemy's weak "zones" and dropping their defense (lame idea, zone breaking, by the way), it would really make for a long time to defeating them. Few things are worse than a deliberately slow way to finishing any given stage in an RPG.

The Character Roster of Chrono Cross - How can a game need to have so many characters and they all be so utterly useless? Some fifty-odd characters in all and only about a third of them were at all interesting. On top of that, because of the elemental system (which pretty much completely replaced the techs from Chrono Trigger) they all pretty much had the same abilites minus the very few techs they had.
No matter who you had in your party for a given scene, they'd all say almost the exact same thing. The only difference would be if they had a particular accent and would maybe word the sentence just a bit different. This kind of crap sucks the life out of a game like Chrono Cross. While the storyline was a bit deep, most of the characters themselves just down it out. Chrono Trigger was a great game and only had seven characters ....

Revisiting Towns in Legend of Dragoon - This doesn't ruin the game, mind you, but it really is a dumb element. Once you change a disc, if you want to go back to a town whose stroyline relevance existed in another disc, then you have to change discs just to go visit that town again. (SK says: "What the heck?! Programming laziness if ever I had seen it.") Imagine if you had to do this crap with Final Fanasy 7, 8, or 9 ...

Using Weapons in Final Fantasy Legends 1 and 2 - Out of all the things wrong with the Legends games, I think the biggest one was the fact that your weapons were consumable. What I mean by that is that when you buy a weapon, it will come with a set number of times you can use it, ... like 20, for instance; you could buy an Axe 20. In battle, if you attack, that number goes down by one. When it hits 0, that weapon is gone.
It's like all the character are all OCD about their weapons or something. (*Attacks* ... "OMG, I got blood on it!" *throws axe away and pulls out a new one*) This makes training just a pain in the ass as you are constantly going to a town to purchase new weapons. (SK says: "If it weren't for the fact the newest weapons and armor were commonly found in a dungeon chest for free, then I would have gone broke long before the game ended and probably not have even been able to finish it at all. Ugh ....")
I actually quit the game as I spent all of my money on weapons before a long dungeon and STILL ran out ... leaving me empty handed in a dungeon unable to beat the boss.

World Maps in Final Fantasy 10 and 12 - While SK and I understand why there wasn't much of a need for the traditional world map in these two games, they were still in our opinion just lazily built and boring as hell. So little effort went into it that travelling the two-dimensional NES world map in Final Fantasy 1 through 4 were more interesting than travelling 10's and 12's. FF 5 through 9 had the free-flying 360 degree controls which should be standard. 10 and 12 could have at least made a 3-D world map to traverse with little dots that would move your location to that specific area. This point and click GUI that 10 and 12 have just annoy the piss out of me.

Leveling up your max HP in Odin Sphere - Well, there's A LOT wrong with this game, but the biggest one is how you level up your HP.
Getting your attack stat up is simple. As you defeat enemies, they drop orbs. Collecting them will level up your attack, ... but your max HP will stay the same. The way you increase your max HP is by going to a restaurant and paying them to cook you food. ... But you have to be the one to provide the ingredients for them. The way you get these ingredients is by planting seeds in battle. Using the same orbs it takes to level up your attack, you can grow these seeds that will yield the ingredients needed. Sometimes enemies will drop them and sometimes you can buy them from merchants, but most of the time you will be farming them yourself amidst your fighting (which makes no logical sense whatsoever; growing plants while fighting monsters?). And even if you have the ingredients and the money, you have to have the recipe the cooks need as well or they won't cook a damn thing for you. This whole process takes HOURS, on top of the game being really difficult in the first place, even on the easiest setting.

And here's the list we came up with, in order:

10)Slow-paced fighting in Xenosaga II
9) Leveling up in Final Fantasy 2
8) Useless characters in Chrono Cross
7) Doing countless side errands in Dragon Quest 8
6) Numeric weapons in Final Fantasy Legends 1 and 2
5) The One-on-one fight system in Thousand Arms
4) Doing agricultural work to level up max HP in Odin Sphere
3) 100% Doom Counter = Game Over in Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter
2) Random Slots in Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core
1) The Laws of Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced</b>

In hindsight it looks like the Final Fantasy series has had its hand in the big cookie jar of MISTAKE a bit too much, especially having elements native of Final Fantasy in both of the first two spots on the list. But, this is how it turned out for SK and I. I am sure we will be doing lists like this in the future, so keep an eye out.

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