Star Ocean: The Last Hope International

I recently bought Star Ocean for PS3 because I was looking for an engrossing RPG. Despite many annoyances, it looks like I’ve found a good one. Star Ocean is a JRPG in which you control a party of up to 4 characters who fight evil monsters and try to save the Earth and more. The graphics are surprisingly low-res. Even though it is only a 720p game, most 720p games look pretty good, but sometimes, this one looks like PS-One quality. At other times, it does look quite stunning, particularly as the camera zooms up on the female characters’ body parts.

The combat is pretty terrific and really makes the game fun. It is real-time combat where you control one character and the others act on their own, though you can switch which character you control on-the-fly. The combat can be either physical damage (swords and arrows) or magic damage, which they call Symbology in the game. For physical attacks, the game emphasizes “blindsides” where you can race around an enemy, confuse it, and make some critical hits. There is also a “rush mode” and combo attacks to liven things up.

The biggest negative is that the game uses save points, so you have to find one in order to save your progress. The problem is that there are some stretches that don’t have them. I spent an hour and a half looking for one last night. Very annoying. The game is good about putting them before bosses, however.

The other bad part is the battle mode vs. travel mode, as in Final Fantasy games and others. It is tedious to enter battle mode, fight, and then conclude battle mode, all of which sometimes double the battle time (for easy enemies, at least).

Bot overall, it is a very good game, so far, and I like it.

Comments are closed.