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Jeckidy
06-28-2013, 09:51 AM
I recently bought the english version of Grandia on PSN and own the Saturn version. Playing them side by side, I am really unimpressed with this game.

-The colorful tone is nice but the ugly scaled graphics ruin what good there is in the 2D sprites.
-Also, as someone who actively studies japanese, the english version's translation was actually pretty spot on. If I was going to translate it, it would take some contemplation in regards to how to make it better, though the japanese voices suit the game better than the english ones.
-Battles are really easy and I haven't died yet.
-The story is really juvenile overall, and filled with alot of comic cliches you would expect in anime and a relatively generic plot.
-How the hell this was regarded as Saturn's answer to FF7 has eluded me. I always thought Panzer Dragoon Saga filled that void, which I have also played and find to be the more impressive game, regardless of whether or not some think it is 'overrated'.

Then again, I realize japanese opinions don't matter since if you looked at Famitsu's top 100 list their idea that RPGs are the only good genre shows how narrow they are. Azel didn't exactly become a best seller there like Grandia did.

I'd also like feedback on Grandia II and III, how are they connected to the first and how good were they in terms of quality? I know the second gets alot of praise.

Kamahl
06-28-2013, 10:05 AM
-How the hell this was regarded as Saturn's answer to FF7 has eluded me.
Take of the nostalgia glasses for a bit and replay FF7. The story is pretty meh, the combat is pretty meh and it looks ugly as hell. At least Grandia doesn't take itself seriously.

Jeckidy
06-28-2013, 10:08 AM
Take of the nostalgia glasses for a bit and replay FF7. The story is pretty meh, the combat is pretty meh and it looks ugly as hell. At least Grandia doesn't take itself seriously.

I know, that's what drew me to it, but still a bit disappointed.

Murphy245
06-28-2013, 10:13 AM
I played through the first grandia and really enjoyed it,i thought it was a pretty good game

KitsuneNight
06-28-2013, 10:36 AM
i rather liked grandia
not inspite fo its juvenile tone but because of it
the game never takes it self too seriously and the character just leap out because of it
they carry the game
unlike mort jrpgs its not about the ( paper thin melodramatic ) story line or the grinding ( though there is that ) but its the characters and their interaction that makes the game shine

grandia 2 is the better game though
other then game play mechanics and voiceovers it has nothing to do with the first game
there isnt even a connection

the story is once again the usual jrpg pap this time with a religious theme and its once again the interaction between the characters that carries the story
the voice acting is also top notch

grandia 3
...grandia 3
....there is no grandia 3

Jeckidy
06-28-2013, 10:41 AM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grandia_III

KitsuneNight
06-28-2013, 10:43 AM
i know that

i was deneying its excistence because square handeld a bit too much off it

the spirit of grandia is al but crushed with 3

xelement5x
06-28-2013, 12:09 PM
Grandia probably has one of the best soundtracks of the time in my opinion, I actually prefere Iwadare's work in that over Lunar in many cases just because of the breadth it has. Haven't played the game itself in awhile so I can't comment on the story as much, but I remember enjoying it when I played it. I do agree with Kahmal that they were products of their time and may not hold up as well coming back to them later.

Grandia II is also really fun, the battle system is good and the story is great. Play it on the Dreamcast instead of the PS2 if you can.

Grandia III and beyond, I don't even consider them anymore.

A Black Falcon
06-28-2013, 03:14 PM
The Grandia games are pretty good, or at least the first two are. I find it frustrating that both games are so absurdly easy (seriously, almost no challenge...), and that as a result the good battle systems are largely unused, but still, great fun games with good stories, characters, art design, and battle system.

As for Grandia vs. FF7, yeah, it's much more Lunar than FF7... but still, Grandia does have a fairly epic adventure. It's a big, long, epic RPG. I can see why it was mentioned as the Saturn's "answer to FF7"... not in terms of having a similar story or something (though it does have some serious parts for sure!), but in terms of being a big, epic, high-quality RPG. It also has a much better battle system than any classic Final Fantasy game. :)

Raja
06-28-2013, 03:36 PM
Grandia II is BY FAR the best game in the series. It's fun, looks and sounds great, has at least 40 hours of gameplay, and imo had a satisfactory (and lengthy) story. Plus its on the Dreamcast and that is the best version of Grandia II by a landslide. The PS2 version is a pile of dog vomit and the PC version is glitched like crazy.

I'd much rather replay Grandia II than FF7 (but then again I generally dislike Final Fantasy games especially the modern ones) because of the more appealing gameplay in Grandia II, but that is of course opinion and not some sort of verifiable fact.

Grandia is also a solid game but not particularly memorable. I'd still be more inclined to play it than FF7 though, as again, its personal preference. To be fair I played Grandia after Grandia II so it was a lot harder for me to get into the first one after having played the second game.

Black_Tiger
06-28-2013, 05:07 PM
I love the first two Grandias and the original has aged better than most 32-bit 3D RPGs and the gameplay is very fun in both.

If you can't handle pixelization, then don't try FFVII.

sheath
06-28-2013, 05:20 PM
No RPGs have great storylines. They wouldn't even pass off as an elementary school grade children's book if you converted every graphic detail into text descriptions.

Raja
06-28-2013, 07:15 PM
No RPGs have great storylines. They wouldn't even pass off as an elementary school grade children's book if you converted every graphic detail into text descriptions.

Just not an RPG fan in general or you enjoy them but hate the stories?

sheath
06-28-2013, 07:29 PM
Just not an RPG fan in general or you enjoy them but hate the stories?

I'm an English minor, the stories aren't very good at all compared to any other medium. I have enjoyed RPGs in the past, FFVII even hooked me until the non-existent ending blew me out. Speaking strictly of JRPGs from before the 6th gen, Square RPGs were the most dialog heavy. Unfortunately it was only dialog that failed completely at advancing any sort of story arc. Most of the dialog doesn't even develop the characters, it's just there for dramatic effect or filler.

Oddly enough, I don't even mind supposedly "grind heavy" RPGs like the Phantasy Stars, Shining in the Darkness, Skies of Arcadia or Ys. Those can be very good for winding down or zoning out. For most of my gaming hobby I was an Arcade-Action gamer almost exclusively. I only turned to RPGs between prominent Action game releases.

Raja
06-28-2013, 08:09 PM
That makes sense.

A game like Grandia only needs enough of a story to up the ante as the 'epic' final battle approaches and I think most RPG's do that quite well. The issue is that in many, like Grandia, the gameplay is just not robust enough to keep your attention without these small interruptions (cutscenes, boss battles, trite dialog, etc.) While not an RPG, a good example of a game with adequate and interesting pacing, is Half-Life 2. In my opinion its a game that keep the story flowing (although no one will confuse it with Shakespeare or Dickens) and keeps the action consistent also. I'm still playing it but I'm more involved in the story as opposed to being TOLD a story. Most RPGs feel like I'm being told a story instead.

I think mostly that Grandia II does a better job of keeping things moving along without becoming TOO repetitive.
The best example of getting things right on the Genesis is definitely Phantasy Star IV. The action, story, emotion, etc is far better and the pacing is excellent. There isn't excessive grinding or aimless wandering imo and the difficulty is pretty much spot on so you don't spend much time being frustrated. I think Grandia II, like I said hits a lot of those points too which is why it's the far more enjoyable title.

Grandia isn't quite there and is definitely more boring and Grandia III like someone said above is total garbage and fails in pretty much every category.

MaxWar
06-28-2013, 08:14 PM
I never played the first Grandia.
Grandia II on the DC is a good and beautiful game but I think it is very easy as far as the jRPG genre goes, this was a bit of a turn off for me.

sheath
06-28-2013, 08:55 PM
That makes sense.

A game like Grandia only needs enough of a story to up the ante as the 'epic' final battle approaches and I think most RPG's do that quite well. The issue is that in many, like Grandia, the gameplay is just not robust enough to keep your attention without these small interruptions (cutscenes, boss battles, trite dialog, etc.) While not an RPG, a good example of a game with adequate and interesting pacing, is Half-Life 2. In my opinion its a game that keep the story flowing (although no one will confuse it with Shakespeare or Dickens) and keeps the action consistent also. I'm still playing it but I'm more involved in the story as opposed to being TOLD a story. Most RPGs feel like I'm being told a story instead.

I think mostly that Grandia II does a better job of keeping things moving along without becoming TOO repetitive.
The best example of getting things right on the Genesis is definitely Phantasy Star IV. The action, story, emotion, etc is far better and the pacing is excellent. There isn't excessive grinding or aimless wandering imo and the difficulty is pretty much spot on so you don't spend much time being frustrated. I think Grandia II, like I said hits a lot of those points too which is why it's the far more enjoyable title.

Grandia isn't quite there and is definitely more boring and Grandia III like someone said above is total garbage and fails in pretty much every category.

I agree, as far as experience goes with a lot of relevant text to read Grandia II and Phantasy Star IV would be at the top of my list of story telling games. For me RPGs are more about problem solving and exploring than they are about story telling.

The Soul Reaver games would be at the absolute top of story telling games though. I'm glad the God of War fad has faded somewhat, I used to cringe every time I heard the term "Greek Tragedy" in regard to that game and its poor excuse for a story. Soul Reaver is a true Greek Tragedy and I'm afraid that fact has been almost entirely lost on the gaming community. I'm glad "Greek Tragedy" hasn't become an expletive like "epic" has. Nobody wants to see my would be lecture on what is, and is not, a narrative poem with the characteristics of an epic. If somebody manages to make a game that qualifies it will no doubt be hated.

Jeckidy
06-28-2013, 09:10 PM
I hear you Sheath. I'm no english minor or even major for that matter but I am a literature fan and generally most RPGs can't be taken too seriously in regards to storytelling. Even the most impressive ones of today are usually only unique in that they are interactive versions of stories told many times before and can only really be measured against stories in their own medium.

But even a less serious, humorous game doesn't excuse a lack of good gameplay, like Grandia. Take Conker's BFD, for instance. If you took away most of the humor and story it would be nothing more than a fairly average platformer.

Unfortunately, most RPG addicts today don't like reading books so they really only have the games to compare with.

KitsuneNight
06-28-2013, 09:24 PM
^ fairly average ?
barely mediocre you mean conkers bad fur day'sonly claime to fame are the swear words and so called humor and thats all

but the legacy of kain series ( legacy of kain not soul reaver legacy of kain it started in 1996 with legacy of kain )
is an amazing display of interwoven interactive story telling that twists and turns and keeps you second guessing the story all 5 games long

its just a shame that the actual games are shallow and tepid and filled with annoying pinpoint action platforming
and that such a story is buried in tepid game play

video games sabotaging themselves it seems

A Black Falcon
06-28-2013, 09:27 PM
No RPGs have great storylines. They wouldn't even pass off as an elementary school grade children's book if you converted every graphic detail into text descriptions.
I think that Planescape: Torment's better than elementary school level, at least, if not much else in the genre.

sheath
06-28-2013, 09:49 PM
I'd say that the Soul Reaver games play better than the N64 Zelda games by a mile, especially due to the boss fights. The original Blood Omen is a little Westerny-sloppy with nasty load times but it is on par with the best in the overhead Action-Adventure genre gameplay wise. Blood Omen II is the only one in the whole series that I would call questionable gameplay wise, and its story clearly isn't even part of the actual continuity. Soul Reaver I and II should be one game as was originally intended and it would be better for it, Defiance is a masterpiece.

Simply put, if any of the Soul Reaver games has Tepid controls then so do all of the 3D Zelda games, Devil May Cry and especially God of War, which actually stole Defiance's gameplay six months later.


I think that Planescape: Torment's better than elementary school level, at least, if not much else in the genre.

I was required to read The Hobbit, The Secret of Nimh, Racso and the Rats of Nimh and Where the Red Fern Grows in Elementary school. How does Planescape: Torment compare to those Novels or Novels in general in your opinion?

old man
06-28-2013, 10:51 PM
I really liked Grandia and Grandia II. I thought the first had the better story and characterization overall. The second one was too hung up on it's moe, harem bullshit to kill the gag reflex but didn't have the annoyingly over frequent battles. I love the time based battle systems of the games, though. I wish they had taken it further and incorporated more strategy.

Also I liked Wild Arms 2 better than Grandia. The battle system was pretty good also, especially later in the game when you started to get more abilities and techniques. It wasn't as good as Grandia's system, but mainly suffered from the three character party that had become standard at the time.

Zz Badnusty
06-29-2013, 01:02 AM
I've never read any informative commentary about Grandia III. People always just say it sucks. The only critical point I recall hearing was that the voice overs were very juvenile. An interview with one of the Game Arts staff boasted how they were maxing out the PS2 for their overworld environments.

Has anyone here played through Grandia III, and if so can you offer some specific impressions?

A Black Falcon
06-29-2013, 04:02 AM
Grandia III has very nice graphics, but feels more Square-Enix than Grandia. S-E published it, and you can tell... plus, it's got grinding. Sure, making the game harder is good, the first two are way too easy... but that is not the answer!

Kamahl
06-29-2013, 09:22 AM
I was required to read [I]The Hobbit[/I
I'd definitely rank Planescape:Torment's story over the Hobbit, by a mile.

Melf
06-29-2013, 09:57 AM
I bought the original Grandia when it came out on Saturn (from Game Cave!) and absolutely loved it. The graphics and soundtrack were incredible for the time, and just rotating that camera while in town made me love my Saturn that much more. It was really a great RPG for the console back then.

I was stoked for the sequel on Dreamcast, but it was far inferior, imo. The storyline was just not engaging at all (and mind you, I played through the original in Japanese and found it more intriguing), the voice overs sucked, but worst of all was that the main character was a total douche. I just couldn't get into playing as him at all. I finished the game, probably because of the lack of JRPGS on the Dreamcast at the time, but I never touched it again. In contrast, I plan to go through the original again (in English, this time).

I've never played part three or any of the EXTREME! ones though.

KitsuneNight
06-29-2013, 11:30 AM
I've never read any informative commentary about Grandia III. People always just say it sucks. The only critical point I recall hearing was that the voice overs were very juvenile. An interview with one of the Game Arts staff boasted how they were maxing out the PS2 for their overworld environments.

Has anyone here played through Grandia III, and if so can you offer some specific impressions?

i played it years ago so take my opinion with a grain of salt
but i remember very little from beyond that it its just a boring basic soul less jrpg with a lot of grinding and an equal amount of soul less boring square enix type cutscenes

its so bland very little will stick with you
not so with grandia 1 and 2 whatever their faults maybe they are memorable

as i said before the spirit of grandia is all but crushed with grandia 3

Team Andromeda
06-29-2013, 11:59 AM
The 1st game is almost magic with kids going on a big adventure and the world characters all growing with the adventure and where the kids always seem to be having fun . Love the whole game and the world and it had brilliant battle system for the time. 2nd games wasn't quite as good but still charming with one of the best battle systems around and while the 3rd game looked and sounded brilliant it didn't quite seem to have the same charm (looked stunning though)

old man
06-29-2013, 09:19 PM
I bought the original Grandia when it came out on Saturn (from Game Cave!) and absolutely loved it. The graphics and soundtrack were incredible for the time, and just rotating that camera while in town made me love my Saturn that much more. It was really a great RPG for the console back then.

I was stoked for the sequel on Dreamcast, but it was far inferior, imo. The storyline was just not engaging at all (and mind you, I played through the original in Japanese and found it more intriguing), the voice overs sucked, but worst of all was that the main character was a total douche. I just couldn't get into playing as him at all. I finished the game, probably because of the lack of JRPGS on the Dreamcast at the time, but I never touched it again. In contrast, I plan to go through the original again (in English, this time).

I've never played part three or any of the EXTREME! ones though.

I thought they should have made use of that smart ass falcon more in Grandia II. He was a good foil for the over angsty main character.

Cucollins12
06-29-2013, 10:10 PM
just one and short... UNDERRATED.

QuickSciFi
06-29-2013, 11:21 PM
Grandia II is one of my favorite RPGs of all time. I have finished it a minimum of 4 times in my lifetime. It's that great.

Jeckidy
06-30-2013, 04:46 PM
What about Grandia Xtreme? What exactly was it?

KitsuneNight
06-30-2013, 04:54 PM
a dungeon crawler if i remember correctly

Segadream
07-01-2013, 12:46 AM
I liked Grandia fine for the time I spent on it,
I think I teeterd off somewhere about the time you find the old man near the cave.
I should go back and finish it.
This game series is very good.

xelement5x
07-01-2013, 12:47 PM
Also I liked Wild Arms 2 better than Grandia. The battle system was pretty good also, especially later in the game when you started to get more abilities and techniques. It wasn't as good as Grandia's system, but mainly suffered from the three character party that had become standard at the time.

Unrelated, but Wild ARMS 2 is probably my favorite in the series, and quite and overlooked game in my opinion.

Jeckidy
07-01-2013, 10:40 PM
Here's a good idea for Grandia:

http://easstudent.wordpress.com/2011/06/01/using-video-games-to-seriously-study-japanese-a-grandia-case-example/

...and also the only reason I have a copy of the Saturn version.

On another note, this FAQ which contains a translation of the dialog before the english version was released, shows you how spot on the translation actually was:
http://www.gamefaqs.com/ps/197483-grandia/faqs/7563

Segadream
07-02-2013, 04:07 PM
http://easstudent.wordpress.com/2011...-case-example/

I just last night realized this idea myself.
But the Illusion of time I have is translated.......
It is a really good way (and fun) to learn a new language.

Zz Badnusty
07-30-2013, 04:39 AM
Obviously, the only reason people would renounce the more popular FF7 for this game is because of 'hipster' value.

Or because they're two entirely different games.

zetastrike
10-03-2013, 08:04 PM
I'm looking into getting Grandia for my Saturn and I just wanted to know if it has issues with a PAR. I've heard that multi disc games don't work. Also, is the PSX version exactly the same to the point where I could use guides and playthrough videos to overcome the language barrier?

Da_Shocker
10-03-2013, 09:32 PM
I'm looking into getting Grandia for my Saturn and I just wanted to know if it has issues with a PAR. I've heard that multi disc games don't work. Also, is the PSX version exactly the same to the point where I could use guides and playthrough videos to overcome the language barrier?

I played it for 39 hours with my 5 in 1 cart. I bought the PSx guide and used it on my Saturn so it is indeed playable but I gave up because I couldn't understand the story and it's a enjoyable one. So I bought the PSx version instead.

j_factor
10-03-2013, 10:17 PM
I loved both Grandia and Grandia II. Grandia Xtreme was a piece of shit though, and I never bothered with III.

I think at some point after Grandia II, Game Arts forgot how to make good games. Lunar DS and Project Sylpheed were also big let-downs.

saturndual32
10-03-2013, 10:56 PM
The first Grandia is one of my favorite games ever. I love FF7, but i rate Grandia right up with it as far as PS1/Sat era rpgs go (Lunar 1 too). Pixalation?, doesnt bother me at all, Grandias graphics are some of my favorite from the era, both from a technical and artistic point of view. The soundtrack was amazing. The gameplay?, too much fun, to the point that the game left me wanting more!
I hated the american version voice overs though.

Grandia 2 dissapointed me a bit, but it still is a great game. I just dont like the darker tone nor the characters as much as i liked the ones from the first game.

Grandia 3 dissapointed me A LOT. I couldnt get into the game at all, even though i tried. Then again, i have rarely been able to get into any game post Dreamcast.

synbiosfan
10-03-2013, 11:05 PM
I loved Grandia and thought II was really enjoyable.

I only heard bad things about Xtreme and III so I never bothered with them.

Lan Di
10-04-2013, 02:21 AM
I really enjoyed playing Grandia 1 and 2, but I think both are a tad overrated. It's not the Final Fantasy 7 killer that the gaming mags made it out to be back in the day. Gems? Yes. Revolutionary? No.

sheath
10-04-2013, 10:02 AM
I really enjoyed playing Grandia 1 and 2, but I think both are a tad overrated. It's not the Final Fantasy 7 killer that the gaming mags made it out to be back in the day. Gems? Yes. Revolutionary? No.

Grandia 1&2 are bog standard RPGs with fully 3D graphics when Square was still screwing around with 3D characters on 2D backdrops. I'd rather play any game in the Shining series than any Grandia or FF. Final Fantasy 7 isn't the killer app people and magazines have made it out to be either. Cruddy low resolution blocky 3D on a 2D backdrop, 11FPS scripted fight scenes, and a non-ending put Final Fantasy 7, sorry TEH LEGENDARY FF7, well below almost any other RPG of that generation in my book.

zetastrike
10-04-2013, 03:44 PM
I ordered the sumbitch. We'll see if it can top PSIV. I'm not sure it will.

Jeckidy
01-11-2015, 05:02 AM
I ordered the sumbitch. We'll see if it can top PSIV. I'm not sure it will.

Maybe not, but I don't think PSIV is that much better. Grandia isn't even a first-party game. I think I finally decided that although Grandia has its merits, the game is not really my cup of tea. I can appreciate lighthearted (Dragon Quest 8, anyone?) but Grandia did not suit my tastes. I don't like GameArts' stuff in general.

MathUser
01-11-2015, 05:17 AM
My thought is that the first game was far too ugly on PS1 for me to want to play through it. PS2 solved the problem with it's texture smoothing option but then the game would crash often. I hear Grandia can even wreck your PS2.

midnightrider
01-11-2015, 11:07 AM
Loved 2 when I had my Dreamcast. Wasn't as fond of the original(and by extension, Parallel Trippers didn't seem all that great, with the card system), never got a chance to play XTreme, and I'd also like to not think III ever came into existence.