Octopath Traveler

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ThirdDrawing
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Octopath Traveler

Post by ThirdDrawing » July 13th, 2018, 5:32 pm

Just wondering if anyone else has picked this up.

The word on the street seems to be quite positive.

I am about five hours in and have just met my third party member.

The graphics are lovely.

The music is gorgeous, as in actually order the soundtrack gorgeous.

Combat is fun and fairly intuitive.

If you're on the fence about this, I really recommend it.

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KissMammal
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by KissMammal » July 13th, 2018, 10:03 pm

I played the demo and enjoyed it - having saved progress carry over to the main game is a very clever hook. I'm not a huge rpg fan, but I do like to play a JRPG once every five years or so, and this one sucked me in with the visual style.

I almost cancelled my preorder after reading the Kotaku review, which was overwhelmingly negative - the main criticisms being that the game is repetitive and grind-heavy, but also that there is no overall sweeping story to the game - the 8 characters all have entirely separate storylines and there is zero interaction or cross-pollination between them.

To be honest, this isn't a dealbreaker for me as narrative isn't my main concern - and I'd suggest that if anyone really thinks the early Final Fantasy games - charming as they are - constitute genuinely good dramatic writing, they probably need to take the rose tinted glasses off. The battle system has been almost universally praised and that's what I'm primarily interested in.

The fact that it can apparently be completed in under 40 hours is actually a bonus for me rather than a drawback.

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ThirdDrawing
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ThirdDrawing » July 14th, 2018, 6:17 pm

KissMammal wrote:
July 13th, 2018, 10:03 pm
I almost cancelled my preorder after reading the Kotaku review, which was overwhelmingly negative - the main criticisms being that the game is repetitive and grind-heavy, but also that there is no overall sweeping story to the game - the 8 characters all have entirely separate storylines and there is zero interaction or cross-pollination between them.
And guess what? It turns out that it isn't true. From what I've read, without spoiling myself, there is a section at the end that *does* tie the stories together.

It absolutely infuriates every time a JRPG comes because you can absolutely tell that reviewers always half ass it and never finish the game. JRPGs always get burned in reviews for either being too linear and/or experimenting too much and being too different. This game is no different and it angers me that reviewers will actually affect sales, like with you, because they don't do their bloody job.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Flabyo » July 14th, 2018, 8:22 pm

Do people base purchasing decisions off one review without reading anyone else’s? Still? In 2018?

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ratsoalbion
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ratsoalbion » July 14th, 2018, 8:29 pm

ThirdDrawing wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 6:17 pm
It absolutely infuriates every time a JRPG comes because you can absolutely tell that reviewers always half ass it and never finish the game. JRPGs always get burned in reviews for either being too linear and/or experimenting too much and being too different. This game is no different and it angers me that reviewers will actually affect sales, like with you, because they don't do their bloody job.
It’s not really laziness for the most part, it’s simply incredibly rare that a reviewer will have a copy of a game far enough ahead of time - or be given enough time to complete an intensive game - before publishing/embargo deadline. The demand for day one reviews from PRs and public is at least as big a part of the problem, and I find it infuriating that reviewers cop the flack for this.

I can tell you from personal professional experience that I often had less than two full days with a Nintendo game before having to get a finished piece to my editor.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by KSubzero1000 » July 14th, 2018, 8:51 pm

ratsoalbion wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 8:29 pm
I can tell you from personal professional experience that I often had less than two full days with a Nintendo game before having to get a finished piece to my editor.
That's just... nowhere near enough time. People aren't machines, especially when they need to do something that requires a minimum of insight and artistic analysis.

How can someone "finish" something like Wind Waker, Golden Sun or even Metroid Prime within two days, let alone with the level of understanding of the material that would be necessary to write a reliable review? This is absurd.

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Flabyo
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Flabyo » July 14th, 2018, 9:18 pm

The vast majority of people who buy games don’t finish them, so a review that concentrated on the opening is more relevant to them.

You need to pick and choose who you read and who you ignore to match the way you play.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by KSubzero1000 » July 14th, 2018, 9:35 pm

It's been a long while since I've based any game purchase of mine on a review, but I really don't think it's a great idea for them to pander to the lowest common denominator. A review should be representative of the product as a whole, I think.

PS: It's especially egregious if the review itself doesn't disclose that the reviewer has only played up to a certain point.

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ThirdDrawing
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ThirdDrawing » July 15th, 2018, 2:44 am

ratsoalbion wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 8:29 pm

It’s not really laziness for the most part, it’s simply incredibly rare that a reviewer will have a copy of a game far enough ahead of time - or be given enough time to complete an intensive game - before publishing/embargo deadline. The demand for day one reviews from PRs and public is at least as big a part of the problem, and I find it infuriating that reviewers cop the flack for this.

I can tell you from personal professional experience that I often had less than two full days with a Nintendo game before having to get a finished piece to my editor.
Then they shouldn't be publishing a review until their done. It's dishonest to publish a review when you're 1/3 of the way through the game.
Flabyo wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 9:18 pm
The vast majority of people who buy games don’t finish them, so a review that concentrated on the opening is more relevant to them.
Maybe for an 8 hour action game (still shady though) but definitely not for a JRPG.
Flabyo wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 8:22 pm
Do people base purchasing decisions off one review without reading anyone else’s? Still? In 2018?
I hope not, but it seems like it. I certainly hope they don't for JRPGs. They have had a target on their back from reviewers since the end of the PS2 era.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Alex79uk » July 15th, 2018, 7:15 am

Bizarrely, and I'm not sure how or why, I thought this game was a Splatoon spin-off, and paid no attention to it. It actually looks really nice!

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ColinAlonso » July 15th, 2018, 8:15 am

Splatoon 2's Octo Expansion's release a couple of weeks ago probably helped with that Alex.

This thread has been the kick up the arse I needed to play that demo that's been on my Switch for a month. Seems enjoyable enough for jrpg fans with some little twists on the turn based battles. I'll put it on my birthday/Christmas list. (Too deep in Final Fantasies right now)

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Flabyo » July 15th, 2018, 8:18 am

ThirdDrawing wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 2:44 am
I hope not, but it seems like it. I certainly hope they don't for JRPGs. They have had a target on their back from reviewers since the end of the PS2 era.
Justifiably so in my opinion. One of the most stagnant genres in the whole industry. It does sound like this one is at least doing something a little different though.

I don’t have the time or patience for the genres idiosyncrasies anymore.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ratsoalbion » July 15th, 2018, 9:08 am

ThirdDrawing, as I said above, it is absolutely not the reviewer’s choice when the review is published.

Please believe me when I tell you that 99% of reviewers would much rather have adequate time to play a game properly and consider their experience before committing words.

Unfortunately the reality is that they are rarely given that ‘luxury’.

Your frustration should be aimed at publishers who send out late code, PRs who set embargos, sites which insist on publishing release day reviews and the wider gaming community itself for continuing to put so much emphasis on ‘timely’ reviews.

Furthermore, no genre has a ‘target on its back’. Very few of the reviewers who were working in the PS2 era are still doing the same job now.

I promise you that there is no conspiracy among critics.

JRPGs are perhaps one of the less well served genres because of the time pressures cited above, along with the fact that reviews tend to be written for a more general audience rather than the hardcore fans of the genre.

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ThirdDrawing
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ThirdDrawing » July 15th, 2018, 11:41 am

ratsoalbion wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 9:08 am
ThirdDrawing, as I said above, it is absolutely not the reviewer’s choice when the review is published.

Please believe me when I tell you that 99% of reviewers would much rather have adequate time to play a game properly and consider their experience before committing words.

Unfortunately the reality is that they are rarely given that ‘luxury’.

Your frustration should be aimed at publishers who send out late code, PRs who set embargos, sites which insist on publishing release day reviews and the wider gaming community itself for continuing to put so much emphasis on ‘timely’ reviews.

Furthermore, no genre has a ‘target on its back’. Very few of the reviewers who were working in the PS2 era are still doing the same job now.

I promise you that there is no conspiracy among critics.

JRPGs are perhaps one of the less well served genres because of the time pressures cited above, along with the fact that reviews tend to be written for a more general audience rather than the hardcore fans of the genre.
I'll take you at your word, but the problem I have with this is that it's almost never disclosed if a reviewer hasn't completed the game, and that should absolutely be front and center in the review.

As for JRPGs not having a target on their backs, we'll have to agree to disagree.
Flabyo wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 8:18 am

Justifiably so in my opinion. One of the most stagnant genres in the whole industry. It does sound like this one is at least doing something a little different though.

I don’t have the time or patience for the genres idiosyncrasies anymore.
So you just came in to shit on JRPGs.

Thanks for your contribution.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by ratsoalbion » July 15th, 2018, 11:49 am

I’m really curious as to how you think this idea of JRPGs being targeted for poor reviews works in operation.

I have reviewed JRPGs for money. I gave my honest opinion exactly the same as with every other game. Nothing and nobody suggested or influenced me to do otherwise.

This goes the same for every other reviewer I know, of which there are quite a few.

Worth saying as well that in practice it is almost impossible for editors to give every review only to a genre specialist.

I wonder if you feel we’re giving the FF games a fair shake in our current podcast series.


Octopath Traveler is on my Switch wisist by the way.

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Michiel K
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Michiel K » July 15th, 2018, 12:18 pm

KSubzero1000 wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 9:35 pm
A review should be representative of the product as a whole, I think.
That's just not realistic with the way the industry (including attached media) works, I'm afraid. There seems to be some discrepancy between what a portion of the readers want out of a review vs. what they really are, though.
KSubzero1000 wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 9:35 pm
PS: It's especially egregious if the review itself doesn't disclose that the reviewer has only played up to a certain point.
I think that would go a long way, actually.
Flabyo wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 8:22 pm
Do people base purchasing decisions off one review without reading anyone else’s? Still? In 2018?
Well, KissMammal almost did... :P Or at least almost let one review influence him enough to where he was swayed from not buying the game.

Reviews around release are usually intended as a purchase guide and if a game isn't good after 8-10 hours of play, that's as valuable a point to base your purchase decision on as any, I think.

Cane and Rinse podcast coverage, a Matthewmatosis critique or any "post mortem" critique would be a complete critical breakdown, including where a game actually stands in the spectrum of video gaming history, requiring at least one full playthrough. That's almost impossible a judgment to accurately deliver in time of release.

Octopath Traveler is on my wishlist as well. And I'm not a huge fan of the genre.

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Michiel K
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Michiel K » July 15th, 2018, 12:18 pm

ThirdDrawing wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 11:41 am

So you just came in to shit on JRPGs.

Thanks for your contribution.
There's no need for all that.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by dezm0nd » July 15th, 2018, 12:27 pm

We don't pick on genres, platforms or pretty much anything here at Cane and Rinse and with the current dedication to playing the entire numbered series of Final Fantasy games with our podcasts I think you'll find that we take each and every game and judge it fairly and honestly.

We're not here to "shit on JRPGs" and if you're gonna throw your toys out the pram when people offer their opinion on something you like then i'd rather you took it back to the playground.

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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Chopper » July 15th, 2018, 12:35 pm

Michiel K wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 12:18 pm
There seems to be some discrepancy between what a portion of the readers want out of a review vs. what they really are, though.
Well said! :P
Michiel K wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 12:18 pm
KSubzero1000 wrote:
July 14th, 2018, 9:35 pm
PS: It's especially egregious if the review itself doesn't disclose that the reviewer has only played up to a certain point.
I think that would go a long way, actually.
I don’t know, in my experience these outlets then take flak from readers who use it as a crutch to beat them with. As if 30 hours of tedium will suddenly be redeemed by the last 5 hours.

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Michiel K
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Re: Octopath Traveler

Post by Michiel K » July 15th, 2018, 12:40 pm

Chopper wrote:
July 15th, 2018, 12:35 pm
I don’t know, in my experience these outlets then take flak from readers who use it as a crutch to beat them with. As if 30 hours of tedium will suddenly be redeemed by the last 5 hours.
Tru enuff.

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