529th played so far


Genre: Role Playing
Platform: Playstation 2
Year of Release: 2005
Developer: Level-5
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment

Somehow it feels like I haven’t played a JRPG in a while. In fact, when it comes to the blog, RPGs have been sparse lately. I make up for it in my personal gaming, and indeed I recently completed Final Fantasy X. Still, I miss the usual variety it offers to the blog, not having a chance to explore the fields. Although there have been plenty of other good games – I have no reason to complain.

Rogue Galaxy is an action RPG focused on bounty hunting. Beyond that, the descriptions of these RPGs blur together a bit – I think I’m better off just playing it.

Our Thoughts

Action RPGs are a bit of a love-hate thing for me. Adding in small timing-based QTEs, as in Paper Mario, work well for me, while if it is barely an RPG in combat, like Fallout 3 outside of VATS, I can enjoy it as that. Rogue Galaxy makes it a bit more difficult, as it is a fairly standard 3rd person action fighting game (at times like a cheap Shadow of the Colossus), with RPG trappings and spells, but not quite as much fighting precision.

Character progression ins somewhat interesting. There is pretty standard leveling involved, but also use of items to unlock extra abilities – somewhat like Final Fantasy X‘s grid, but with more standard stat changes. It’s an interesting system, allowing for trade offs without fully screwing you over if you can’t find something you need.

The story and concept add some natural feeling side quests and variety of the levels. As a galactic bounty hunter (starting off on a wild desert planet, which does sound familiar) you travel around the galaxies fighting on different themed planets. It sets up a bunch of the changes and a good reasno to travel. It also gives you a good reason to travel back – capturing enough of each enemy to meet your quota. There’s more of a story than that, of course, but the basic setup is there.

The boss fights seem to be even more interesting. The first boss fight is in stages, not just requiring differently aimed attacks, but also having you climb the beast to hit weak spots. It’s not quite Shadow of the Colossus complex, but it brings in some interesting added variety. The controls don’t always deliver on it, but it works.

Final Thoughts

Rogue Galaxy is a good looking game with a bunch of interesting ideas. The battle and advancement systems aren’t entirely new, but feel fresh and more interesting than what we get otherwise. The side quests are varied and create a far more interesting world and set of tasks than you’d normally get. It all works that well.