Jul. 24th, 2013

unij: Kahn is depressed (Missed Your Mark)
hahahaHAHAHAHAHA okay you wanna go let's go because i tell you
i have wanted to go on this rant for a long time
buckle up everybody here we go we’re gonna make a list

Plot


In Dark Dawn your mission is to get a feather because your friend is a dumbass who broke your dad's shit.
It's a fucking fetchquest. That's what ninety percent of the game is, going to fetch this stupid fucking feather that's halfway across the planet. There’s a landslide, better go the long way around to get the feather. Gotta activate a machine to go through a cave on the way to the feather. Better activate a different machine so you can enter a new cave so you can get an ability that will help get the feather.

There's absolutely nothing but this dumbass feather driving you along, so the game lacks any sense of urgency or motivation for you to think "I gotta take care of this and I gotta do it now." In the first games you were heroes out to save the whole planet from destruction, so there was some context for you to be concerned about the places you visit and people you meet. You’re saving the world, you want to protect people from exploding chaos or the withering death of the elements, so it makes sense to be worried about a crazy tree mutating people into sentient saplings. Here, you're just a bunch of kids passing through the area, sticking your nose into problems way bigger than you. You know what settling race relations is not going to do? Get me to the top of this fucking mountain so I can skin this motherfucking mystical turkey.

The last chunk of the game includes a considerably more urgent plot, but it is seriously only at the VERY end, and again this shit would never have happened and no one would have needed to die if you had just found a more efficient goddamn way to go get your stupid feather.

Finally, after you’ve done everything (and everyone is for some reason treating you like heroes even though everything that went wrong is your fault), the game has the FUCKING GALL to show you what the considerably more interesting plot SHOULD have been but WASN’T, because you had to go get your feather.

Belinsk is stupid


Okay so I never had a problem with the fact that every single place you go has some sort of random ass ancient ruins full of puzzles and convoluted defense systems and nonsense, because the puzzles are always a lot of fun and they’re a pretty important part of the game, so whatever, that’s just a thing that happens.

Belinsk has only been around as long as its populace of furries, though, which became a thing thirty years ago. It does not have an ancient culture. Which means they had to’ve decided to settle on top of this ancient doom site that houses an apocalypse machine. And that’s stupid. Real stupid.

Why would you move there? Because other furries moved there? Why did everyone who was suddenly mutated into an animal beast decide to move in with one another and leave their old lives? Why are they all cool with it? Why are they just acting like this place that has only just been founded has a deep and long-standing culture? It doesn’t. Stop that. Move somewhere that isn’t on top of a doomsday device. You guys are asking for trouble.

Everyone is stupid


Every time a cutscene started I dreaded what was coming next, because I knew someone was going to say something stupid or nonsensical with really forced logic that’s only there to move the plot along, and the only light to shine its way through was the thought “maybe Eoleo’s going to have a line” because Eoleo’s the guy who goes “why the fuck are we still talking let’s GO DO SOME SHIT” seriously why did we have to get him so late in the game

Okay but focusing on the point at hand, whenever the bad guys of this game would show up they’d stand around and smirk and go “ha ha we are leading you into a trap!” The main characters would then retort, “we will not fall for your trap!” But then the bad guys taunt “ah but you will have no choice but to go to the trap!” The main characters scoff, “whatever we are super smart and will not fall into any traps at all!”
Then as soon as the bad guys are gone they go “wow but that trap they mentioned sounds really interesting we should check it out.” So they go on and they get to the trap and they go “oh shit we have no choice but to do this even though we know it is a trap” and they walk into the trap.

It’s stupid.

Everyone is stupid.

Ryu Kou is stupid


Every time we meet this little shit all he does is bitch and moan and act like an asshole and refuse to trust the main characters despite their best efforts to help him out. Yet, for some reason, we’re still supposed to want to help him? The main characters do, at least, though I can’t really fathom why.

So after like three encounters wherein he is nothing but a jerkoff who is rude and suspicious and acts as if the main characters are the douchebags we still help him out and go to help save his sister

But we gotta be careful guys because there’s this thing on the way that might cause the apocalypse. We have to make sure not to do the thing that will cause the apocalypse. We promised! We promised not to cause the apocalypse, because that’s extra incentive not to cause the apocalypse, the promise. Woooooh, looks like it’s going to be hard to get past this dungeon without causing the apocalypse to go off, but we promised not to, so let’s try and find another way to—

Then because you brought Ryu Kou along and because he’s a stupid little shit he goes and causes the apocalypse why the fuck did we bring him along everyone is dead now

Kraden is stupid


Okay, but seriously, I actually kind of liked Kraden in the first games! wow shocking. No, but really, I got the feeling that the main characters looked up to him as a mentor and he knew a lot, and I was concerned for the guy when he got kidnapped because clearly he knew a lot of stuff that the bad guys could use for evil and whatever! Ah, but even though he’s in a shitty situation, he’s sort of excited to see the world and go on adventures! He hasn’t got many years left, so it’s probably exciting for him to get to see all these crazy phenomena in the world outside of Vale, I can’t blame him for getting a little carried away with investigating werewolves.

Except now he doesn’t do jack shit but add more useless lines of dialogue to already enormously tedious cutscenes and he’s got no reason to be with you on this quest but it’s okay because GUESS WHAT THIS ASSHOLE’S BASICALLY IMMORTAL NOW AND YOU’RE NEVER GETTING RID OF HIM I mean was this old bastard really such a touching and lovable character that they couldn’t bear to let him die peacefully and happily in his sleep knowing he’d gotten to see the world? I GUESS SO here’s twenty lines of discussion about his messenger pigeon THANKS FOR THAT VITAL INFO

So after causing the apocalypse, I had no idea where to go in this rad new pirate ship with my rad new pirate member. So I sailed around wherever I could. I went to every place accessible by ship, and then walked around the mainland to explore what was available, because, again, I had no clue where to go. The game makes it extremely clear, at this point, that everyone is dying, and every second you waste leads to more people dying. Cities under the eclipse’s power were filled with corpses. My rad new pirate member, whose father just died getting him to safety, gets to see his already struggling homeland dying and reduced to shambles. My beastman party memeber gets to go on knowing that her home is the epicenter of this disaster, and likely everyone she knows is dead. None of us have any fucking clue where to go in order to fix it.

Finally, I find the right island to visit. I pull up on the dock. Kraden finally speaks up.

“Wow we finally got here!” He knew where to go. Why the fuck didn’t he say something earlier. “Well we’d get here eventually, I didn’t want to waste any time by talking to you about it!”

What

WHAT
YOU
MOTHER FUCKER

HOW DOES THAT FUCKING LOGIC WORK

HOW DOES NOT TELLING ME WHERE TO GO, SO I SAIL AROUND THE WHOLE PLANET, WHILE EVERYONE IS DYING BECAUSE OF US
SAVE TIME

I JUST

I

GHHHHHHHHH

Missed Djinn and Summon Tablets


Personally, this is a minor thing but I know it pissed other people off, so I’ll describe it how I experienced it firsthand.

Something I’ve always liked about these games is how easy it is to recover PP. Casually walking around the world map will restore it really quickly, so it’s pretty easy to just stroll around for a while, maybe grind against the random encounters in the area, and then heal up with the endless supply of psynergy rolling in. This meant that I pretty much never ever used the Inns in town, which is ok by me, saving a little extra cash, where’s the downside?

Turned out the downside was I never found out that I needed to have the special dream leaf in the special inn at a special time to get the special Djinn and once I did find out it was gone forever oops.

There’s a lot of moments like this in the game where you have to do this really stupid song and dance to get your rad summons and cute Djinnimon and if you don’t know what to do at the exact right time then it’s locked away because of convoluted plot reasons. It’s lame and I don’t see how anyone could have known to do it without consulting a guide.

What is up with the characters from the last game


Look I understand that the story of the characters from the previous games are over. I’m fine with not having them around. But… like, two words, maybe, about where they even are? If Isaac, Jenna, Tyrell, and Ivan all live together, then where did Jenna and Ivan go? Just a really quick blurb about where the fuck they went! That’s all I ask! I don’t need to see Mia, I’d just like to know why she’s not with her two young children, okay?

And I’m seriously not a shipper, really, but… I mean, the first games kind of really made a point of going “hey guys Jenna is into Garret. She’s more into Garret than Isaac. Just saying. She is.” So what I’m taking away from this is that after Garret married someone we never saw or heard about or learned the name of, Jenna settled for Isaac. And that’s weird.

Anyway that’s all, it’s not a big thing, just seemed a little bit weird to me.

PS you know what would be neat knowing what the fuck is up with Sheba’s backstory I’m still mad that they never answered any of that in The Lost Age ok moving on

In Conclusion


If you like this game then that’s fantastic. I’m really glad for you, seriously. There are things to like in this game, I will not deny it! But for me, those things that are good do not come anywhere close to outweighing the atrocious plot, grating dialogue, and overall forced idiocy of every single character except Eoleo. I don’t even completely hate the game, really—I genuinely love how angry it makes me. I relish in the opportunity to share my experience with people, to try and convey the absurdity of its plot holes. It’s a cathartic feeling, to take it apart and really analyze it from a storytelling perspective and to understand what exactly it is that rubs me the wrong way about it.

Those of you who love it entirely? Rock on, keep on liking it, I will not stop you. I’m going to love to loathe it.

November 2014

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