The story of The Alliance Alive (3DS) is by Suikoden creator Yoshitaka Murayama

May 2, 2014
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#51
If I had to take a guess, I think they chose to use subtitles because of scene direction. A lot of up close shots and some POV shots too. Maybe they felt that text bubbles would obstruct those type of scenes on the tiny 3DS screen? I don't think the scenes look that bad. The trailer does seem more story focused than LoL but I'm not expecting much from the story. I'm much more interested in gameplay changes as the minimal story in LoL did not bother me.
 
Aug 7, 2011
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#53
There is a demo on the JP eshop, it was released on 3/30. I played a bit last night and I was pretty impressed. It plays like an SNES RPG in 3D. And it seems like there is a large world to explore. Music is nice too. Only thing I don't like is the font which is blurry and hard to read.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#58
(Sorry for the double post.)

It doesn't mean much but good to see amazon.co.jp reviews being very positive for now: 8 five-star, 2 four-star (and 1 one-star which shouldn't count as it was posted by a known troll).
Posters praise the old-school feeling, the unpredictable story and good characters, the battle system that reminds of both Saga and Bravely Default, the exploration and the pacing.
The only shortcoming for now seems to be the balance: too easy overall, with some rare monsters being too hard, on the other hand.
It's still too early to have a reliable consensus but that's encouraging.
 

Xelinis

Junior Member
Nov 23, 2007
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#59
(Sorry for the double post.)

It doesn't mean much but good to see amazon.co.jp reviews being very positive for now: 8 five-star, 2 four-star (and 1 one-star which shouldn't count as it was posted by a known troll).
Posters praise the old-school feeling, the unpredictable story and good characters, the battle system that reminds of both Saga and Bravely Default, the exploration and the pacing.
The only shortcoming for now seems to be the balance: too easy overall, with some rare monsters being too hard, on the other hand.
It's still too early to have a reliable consensus but that's encouraging.
That's great to hear. I wonder if anyone on GAF's gotten their hands on this yet.
 
Jan 28, 2013
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#60
I'll buy this just because of Yoshitaka Murayama. FuRyu's reputation aside, it sounds like this has been received better than Arms' Heart, the last RPG by Matsuzo Machida of Shadow Hearts fame, was.

I wish they had gotten Fumi Ishikawa to do character design and Miki Higashino as a composer for a Suikoden semi-reunion.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#61
Well... seeing that it has excellent word of mouth (4.5 after 39 reviews right now on amazon), limited stock and that the few second hand copies I've seen are more expensive than a new one, I finally took the plunge. I'm happy cause I received the bonus CD too, with 20 tracks no less.
Will post my impressions later if the thread is able to stay alive. I assume there's no need for an import OT.
 
Feb 7, 2007
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#62
Looking forward to being able to get a single English language impression of this game, which as far as I can tell, does not exist anywhere else on the internet.

Legend of Legacy fans showing up, all three of us!
 
Aug 7, 2012
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#63
Looking forward to being able to get a single English language impression of this game, which as far as I can tell, does not exist anywhere else on the internet.

Legend of Legacy fans showing up, all three of us!
As one of those three, I need to ask: Is the combat here similar to Legends of Legacy, or did this game completely shed away the SaGa-ness of the previous game? I haven't been following this one much.
 
Aug 7, 2011
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#64
I ordered this too, finally (along with Radiant Historia 3DS). I did not like Legend of Legacy, but got this based on the strong demo and strong word of mouth.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#66
Quick first impressions as I only played 40 minutes for now. Firstly, it came with a soundtrack CD, 5 (!) 3DS themes and a 30-page long full-color manual, in 2017! That's super cool. There's even 4 pages of hints written by the game designer Kouji Koizumi.
Secondly, on the game itself, not much to say but it's like playing a 90's RPG that looks like LoL or Bravely Default, with an FF-like 3D world map and Romancing SaGa's battle and growth systems.
There's no Xp but every battle gives "talent points" that are used to buy useful skills like "more frequent HP/SP growth", "SP regeneration each turn", "special attacks cost less SP", "less expensive items in store", etc. This actually gives a direct incentive to do battles, something that's usually a bit lacking in SaGa.

Compared to LoL: story and dialogues are noticeably more prominent, world looks like it will be more vast (or at least with multiple towns and more varied environments) and mechanics seem easier to grasp. The battle system is less novel, being basically Romancing SaGa's without any new quirk as far as I can tell for now. I haven't touched LoL in 2 years so I may forget things.
 
Aug 7, 2012
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#73
I say that because Atlus already has a bunch of 3DS RPGs to localise and I don't think they're going to bring over anything else for 3DS in 2018, least of all the sequel to a game that I don't think sold all that well.
While I think the game has almost no chance for a localization (sadly), to be fair, Atlus did just release The Caligula Effect, which is an even worse proposition.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#76
Update after playing for a total of 4 hours and finishing the first part. There's a couple of new mechanics:
- Formations are the core of the battle system. They give each member a role (attack, defense and support - the same as in LoL-) and a position (front, middle, back), which both modify their stats and/or the efficiency of their skills. The thing is you can change it freely at the beginning of the turn to adapt your strategy mid-battle.
- There's no weapon wear per se but there's a limit break-like system which allows PC to use a weapon's strongest skill at the cost of breaking it.
- There's also a system involving guilds that help you in battle when you're near one of their HQ, and also give you various supports in the form of enhancement of skills, sale of maps, info on monsters and R&D for weapons/armors, spells and formations. But for that you have to help them gain level by recruiting NPC.
Other differences with LoL I can think of:
- It follows a more traditional J-RPG formula (go to a dungeon to find something, event, go back to town, event, go somewhere else, event, etc.).
- 5 party members in battle instead of 3.
- No more elemental balance, which I personally think is a big loss as that gave a lot of depth to the battle system.
- Only two types of magic: rune magic for humans and evil magic for demons.
- You're not the explorer this time, so you either already have on you or buy the maps.
- Auto-battle with an option to fast-forward, which is pretty handy considering the game is also easier.
- Background elements don't "pop-up" anymore.

Exploration of the world is encouraged and rewarded: there are stronger, bigger versions of regular enemies roaming in remote places, and instead of the regular chests with treasures that are useless 90% of the time, you can find some special stones that can be exchanged in town for items you actually choose. I think that's a pretty good idea.

Regarding the story, it's definitely more talkative and things actually happen. It doesn't avoid cliches (I think it includes them on purpose) and light inconsistencies with the setting, but the writing is pleasant overall. I need to play more to form a better opinion on it, though I don't see it going to be very Suikoden-like.

After a couple of hours, I think it's a pretty solid game, enjoyable even for those who disliked LoL.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#78
Finished the 3rd part (which in reality is chapter 13 or 14, those are really short) and I have to say I really like the characters and how the story is told. In a way reminiscent of Suikoden 3, the first 3 parts take place at the same time but from different points of view and at different places. It's pretty well done and also a great way to have a closer look at each character (well, most of them), their personnality and motivation. I'm surprised at how likeable some characters are despite being archetypes I usually despise (e.g. the genius little girl).
That's still the very beginning though, not even 10 hours in.

And still going strong on amazon.jp: 4.4 after 53 reviews.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#83
Small update to add that everything clicked for me yesterday night and I played for more than 3 hours straight, something I very rarely do nowadays.
Gameplay, art direction, level design/exploration, sound design, story and writing, pacing, user-friendliness... every aspect is at worst good, at best excellent, which is something I can't say about the other games attempting to strike the same nostalgic chord. Bravely Default, Legend of Legacy, Setsuna, the two SMT4 if they count, I do like them to various degrees but they all fail somewhere, which I can't say about this one for now.
If it's able to keep me entertained like this until the end, then it'll become my favorite 3DS game.
 
Feb 24, 2015
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#84
Finished the 3rd part (which in reality is chapter 13 or 14, those are really short) and I have to say I really like the characters and how the story is told. In a way reminiscent of Suikoden 3, the first 3 parts take place at the same time but from different points of view and at different places. It's pretty well done and also a great way to have a closer look at each character (well, most of them), their personnality and motivation. I'm surprised at how likeable some characters are despite being archetypes I usually despise (e.g. the genius little girl).
That's still the very beginning though, not even 10 hours in.

And still going strong on amazon.jp: 4.4 after 53 reviews.
Thanks for impressions. I loved the trinity sight system, and I realllly want this now.... please get localized!
 
Aug 7, 2011
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#87
I've been playing this all night. Such a fun game! If you like 90s JRPGs, you'll like this.

This is an impressive comeback after the disaster that was Legend of Legacy.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#88
I got my hand on the ship and, of course, spent the last 2 hours exploring the world instead of doing the main quest. Found some nice weapons and a couple of places I'll need to visit again later.

It really feels like a long-lost, somewhat high-budget PS1 RPG back with an extra layer of polish and user-friendliness for 2017. It's really great; too bad it looks like there's not much interest for it...
 
Jun 10, 2016
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#89
It really feels like a long-lost, somewhat high-budget PS1 RPG back with an extra layer of polish and user-friendliness for 2017. It's really great; too bad it looks like there's not much interest for it...
I always wanted more of this on 3ds, basically what was a full fledged jrpg on the ps1. Bravely Default got close, but I wanted more haha thanks for the impressions. Hopefully it does get localised, and they don't judge based on LoL
 
May 24, 2010
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#90
too bad it looks like there's not much interest for it...
Your impression made me from "want it' to "need it" however without an announced localization it's hard to express excitement.
Do it Atlus! DO IT!

It's still great to read your impression and I hope you continue :)
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#91
Probably my final update as I finished the game yesterday.
45 hours in total, by doing everything I could find by myself. One thing I didn't explain much is that to upgrade the five guilds - which are extremely important as they offer support ranging from help in battle to unique spells and equipment, new roles, dungeon maps, bonus talent points, etc. - you have to recruit numerous NPC (around 150 I think) all over the world in something that is very reminiscent to how it was handled in Suikoden. That's basically the majority of the side content but that's really worth it.

Overall the game kept being a lot of fun from beginning to end and, yes, as of now it's my favorite original 3DS game.
Not everything's perfect, though, and I have a couple of complaints that prevent me from considering it a masterpiece. First, the world isn't vast at all. It's very fun to explore, maybe the most I had in a RPG, but it feels pretty small with too few regions.
Second, the story is, when all is said and done, nothing very original and exciting; it's the same shounen tale of friendship, hope and sacrifice I think I have experienced hundreds of time. Also, the mazoku (demon) society isn't developed enough and we see far too few of them. Two positives, however:
- The writing in itself, that is the dialog and interactions between characters, was nicely done with some good touches of humor.
- The mystery surrounding what happened in the past, that has to be put together by oneself by finding the numerous hints scattered here and there like pieces of a jigsaw, is far more interesting, darker, and shed a new light on some characters.
Some other minor flaws include battles that tend to be too easy for most of the game, not enough differences between characters (only two that are their own thing) and repetitive optional dungeons (but short so nothing too frustrating).

I hope it will be localized - that would be a shame if not - and the sales end up good enough to warrant a sequel that goes deeper into the lore and offers a bigger scale and less clichés.
 
Jun 16, 2016
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#93
Thanks for the impressions. I have to say that the simpleness of the battle system has soured me a bit, especially with the random nature of SaGa style battle systems in the first place which I've never been a massive fan of. Just crying out for some real challenge and depth to balance it out for mine.

Kind of sounds like there would be enough meat there for me otherwise, but not when combined with a depthless auto-battle-thon to accompany the journey. Basically all of the side content and secret weapons, equipment etc not really necessary at all due to simpleness of game in general then? Pretty big let down for me.

Also disappointed to hear that it's really more of a portable game as far as size and scope in the end too. Understandable, but still disappointing when looking at ports of full console games on the system like N64 Zeldas, Dragon Quests, Xenoblade etc.

Maybe I'm just focusing on the negatives because I was pretty hyped for this. Really like the look, and characters, but sounds like a 3/5 is probably best I can hope for though if on the small chance it does get localised.
 
Nov 15, 2009
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#95
Thanks for the impressions. I have to say that the simpleness of the battle system has soured me a bit, especially with the random nature of SaGa style battle systems in the first place which I've never been a massive fan of. Just crying out for some real challenge and depth to balance it out for mine.

Kind of sounds like there would be enough meat there for me otherwise, but not when combined with a depthless auto-battle-thon to accompany the journey. Basically all of the side content and secret weapons, equipment etc not really necessary at all due to simpleness of game in general then? Pretty big let down for me.

Also disappointed to hear that it's really more of a portable game as far as size and scope in the end too. Understandable, but still disappointing when looking at ports of full console games on the system like N64 Zeldas, Dragon Quests, Xenoblade etc.

Maybe I'm just focusing on the negatives because I was pretty hyped for this. Really like the look, and characters, but sounds like a 3/5 is probably best I can hope for though if on the small chance it does get localised.
It's still a Koizumi battle system so there definitely is depth to it: formations you can change on the fly, positioning, roles (attack/defense/support and their various variations), enemy weaknesses, support you activate by building guild towers in the zone then linking them, etc.
But it's true that if, like me, you use all those systems to your advantage, 90% of the battles are just a formality. To be fair I imagine it to be quite challenging for someone who do not. And there's still a number of difficult boss battles (especially 4 near the end that are linked to the story but optional). Though the final boss is a pushover and as far I as know there's now super tough secret boss...

As for the scope, yeah, that's too bad but that's probably the best they could do with their budget.
Still, a solid 4/5 to me and I encourage every JRPG fan to give it a try if/when possible.
 
Feb 7, 2007
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#96
Very nice to hear impressions. Story and characters being trite and uninteresting was my biggest worry from the clips I saw (especially since I thought what was in LoL was actually very underrated and cool) but atmosphere, music, and SaGa style-battling definitely seems like it would be enough to make me very happy if we ever get the chance to play this.