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Played in 2023
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This game was released while my PS3 was broken and awaiting repair, so I became obsessed with the idea of it, longing for the day where I would get to play a kart racer/Littlebigplanet hybrid. It sounded like a dream come true.
I do like the game but it fell a bit short of my enormously high expectations. The racing doesn't feel the tightest, although I say that as an admirer of Crash Team Racing's controls, but not the worst out there. It was easy enough to make a basic map but the tools were there to master the creation tools and make advanced tracks. I never delved too deep into making my own races as the tracks available online were very well made.
Online was a lot of fun, I remember getting somewhat hooked on racing with others until the servers lost its player base.
I really like the concept of the game as a whole and think it's a load of fun, but just wish the whole thing was a little more streamlined.
I have a lot of admiration for this game, however I feel to unlock Dark Cloud 2's full potential as a game, I would have to sacrifice my real world life which I was reluctantly unwilling to do.
There is so much to do, and the ridiculously vast amount of content was overwhelming for someone who wasn't able to commit much more than an hour a day whenever possible, resulting in spending a lot of time exploring an endless pool of guides out of fear of missing something out. I wasn't able to devote every spare moment to photographing every entity in Chapter 1 before they became permanently lost (one of the first boss fights included a photo), and that was a red flag for me. If I was a child with no commitments, this game would be the dream for me but sadly those days are gone.
The visuals are bright and vibrant, I enjoyed exploring the towns to recruit people and I was a big fan of the scope of the whole thing, however it's not without it's flaws. I found dungeons incredibly repetitive, and this was one of the things that put me off persevering through Dark Cloud 2. The battling left plenty to be desired, which isn't ideal when you're looking at about 30 dungeons per chapter.
I wish I could have stuck out longer with this game as it includes so many interesting components, for which I congratulate the designers. I just needed something a bit more streamlined.
Suikoden was one of my favourite RPGs until I played the second entry which surpassed it so much that going back to the first one was never as tempting. That being said, it is still a really fun game.
The story is great, visuals hold up superbly and it's battle system is foolproof. Character recruitment is rewarding but having permanently missable characters is a bit of a bummer. One thing I think this game and the Suikoden series as a whole is missing is side quest bosses, as the game never gets more challenging than the story bosses.