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Round 2, Match 20: Tales of Graces f - Winner (4) vs Tactics Ogre Let Us... (1)

JuMeSynJuMeSyn Code: KirinAdministrators
edited June 2014 in Battle Royale!
Match 20: Which battle system do you prefer?
Tales of Graces f
Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together
We begin about 10 minutes after midnight on Wednesday morning. We'll end in roughly 48 hours!
Nathan, Glenn, Alex, and Mr. Apps will debate this ... very soon!

Oh, we're done now. As of about 1 minute after midnight on Friday morning in the East.
It's not what he's eating, but what's eating him that makes it ... sort of interesting.
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Comments

  • 7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the Realm RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    I have an odd day today and will be heading out of town at the end of it. I don't want to forget to vote before leaving, so I'll first this and also give an early vote.

    Two games here that I can't figure out a way to compare and contrast. I'm a huge fan of both of these battle systems and consider them about the best their respective gaming formats can manage.

    For Graces f, this is a type of RPG I generally dislike. There are no great labels for the many varieties of action RPGs, so I'll toss out that I think of these as realtime JRPGs, and I rarely play them. In Graces f, the monotonous story, rainbow of textureless graphics, grade school writing, and repetitive back and forth questing were completely saved by my favorite realtime JRPG battle system. Everything else become bearable when battles were so fun. I loved how many choices and mechanics there were, and how they were gradually implemented so it wasn't overwhelming. Ultimately, everything in combat worked and had a place, and the game was just hard enough to keep me engaged while easy enough that I only memorably died to cheap overpowered desert monsters. Similarly to Xenoblade, you could control any party member and they all played differently, which was nice although I rarely did it.

    Tactics Ogre I already wrote plenty about. It's one of my favorite systems in my absolute favorite JRPG genre.

    Although it would be fair to say I enjoyed TO's combat more, as far as a "best" system goes here, I have to figure Graces f did something much more impressive in my world by taking a system whose foundation I consistently dislike, and creating something out of it so fun and outstanding that I still wasn't tired of playing it even after the postgame chapter was complete.

    Vote: Tales of Graces f
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  • Rya_ReisenderRya_Reisender Solipsist Snowflake Full Members
    edited June 2014
    Tales of Graces hands down. It's just TOO good.
  • PawsPaws Purr RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Personal bias ahoy! But I'm not gonna blah on TO this round, because I've actually really enjoyed watching Chris play Graces F; it may even convince me to play a Tales game again.
  • omegabyteomegabyte He's just this guy, you know? RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Just judging by who's voting this round, this could be the first (and likely only) unanimous round.

    I haven't played Tactics Ogre (nor do I want to; just as Glenn doesn't typically like action JRPGs, I don't typically like tactical JRPGs), so I can't really cast an opinion, but I do love me some Tales of Graces. It's one of my favorite three Tales games, second to Symphonia and just beating out Xillia, mainly because I like the cast better.
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  • Jmustang1968Jmustang1968 RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    I really want to cheer on TO here but it looks like its fate is sealed. I just love the battles. One of the few RPGs I can play solely on the battles.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Why would you make me choose between these two, why? This hurts. My absolute favorite Tales game up against TACTICS OGRE. Uggh. This is worse than Ys Seven vs. Dark Souls.

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  • TexsideTexside Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    I never played Tales of Graces, but the Tales series in general has one of my favorite battle systems. Can't really vote in good conscience, because the variation between series is notable and I dunno what Tales of Graces f did differently.

    But man, Tactics Ogre, that was just the highest evolution of Yasumi Matsuno's (and his crew's) tactical RPGs. It was probably my favorite battle system in that genre, and I sunk countless hours into it. Great memories there.
  • Rya_ReisenderRya_Reisender Solipsist Snowflake Full Members
    edited June 2014
    You really should play Tales of Graces then. In this "forum game" it represents the best Tales of... battle system. And that rightfully so.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Tales of Graces f is just a brilliant battle system in general. Taking the "Destiny remake" style and merging it into a 3D battlefield worked out wonderfully, and provides for all sorts of fun encounters. it's fast and smooth, and challenging at the right difficulties. Xillia not using the same system was a crying shame. Yes Graces f easily topped Hearts as my favorite battle system in the series. Now, that means that...

    Oh dear lord Wheels what are you doing with that chair?!!?!?
    NO!

    NOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    heel.jpg

    I vote Tactics Ogre


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    (reasons I voted TO coming soon)
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  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited June 2014
    Wheels turns heel? What's next, convincing 7th to change his vote, too?
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  • TwinBahamutTwinBahamut Staff Healer RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    omegabyte wrote: »
    Just judging by who's voting this round, this could be the first (and likely only) unanimous round.
    I didn't think I was that predictable. Am I?

    Of course, your prediction has already been chaired by Wheels, so I won't dwell on it.

    To be honest, I have no idea how to compare two battle systems that are almost polar opposites like this one. They're just so different... On one hand, the carefully paced tactical game. On the other, the fluid and exciting action battle system. In a weird way they are both excellent games with some rather strange flaws. It's basically the game all about trying to force a team of armor-wearing linebackers through a bottleneck against the game that has no bottlenecks or linebackers. Both games have some similar flaws in requiring you to worry about building up skills and such in battle, which takes away from the ability to just enjoy the battles (though ToGf is worse at this).

    Both games are quite fun at their core, so it might come down to which set of annoying little flaws bothers me more. I really need to spend more time thinking about it.
  • DarkRPGMasterDarkRPGMaster A Witness to Destruction Moderators
    edited June 2014
    Wheels, you should have changed the other face to be the hero of TO for that. XD

    My vote went to Graces F. They took a formula that was decent and made it absolutely amazing, brilliant, and the single best battle system of the Tales series.
    "Yes, because apparently blindly jumping headfirst into a firefight without a grasp on the situation or any combat experience is a sign of genius these days."
  • Zeboyd GamesZeboyd Games Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    This matchup feels a lot like "Which is better? Pizza or Star Wars?"
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  • TexsideTexside Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    You really should play Tales of Graces then. In this "forum game" it represents the best Tales of... battle system. And that rightfully so.

    Sadly, I don't have a PS3; it's on the list if I grab one, though!
  • TwinBahamutTwinBahamut Staff Healer RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    This matchup feels a lot like "Which is better? Pizza or Star Wars?"
    Pizza. I gotta go with pizza. No question.
  • 7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the Realm RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Macstorm wrote: »
    Wheels turns heel? What's next, convincing 7th to change his vote, too?

    I told him if he embeds five Randy Orton pics across all of these match-ups, I'd turn heel and vote for whatever he wants once. He's up to four at the moment :love_heart:
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    7thCircle wrote: »
    I told him if he embeds five Randy Orton pics across all of these match-ups, I'd turn heel and vote for whatever he wants once. He's up to four at the moment :love_heart:

    Randy Orton says:

    Tactics Ogre's (any version of it) contains diverse tactical battles with deep character mechanics to go along with them. It could RKO even the finest the Tales series has to offer. As good as it is Graces f just can't touch the joy of carefully maneuvering troops into place to turn the tide of a tough battle.

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  • Rya_ReisenderRya_Reisender Solipsist Snowflake Full Members
    edited June 2014
    Texside wrote: »
    Sadly, I don't have a PS3; it's on the list if I grab one, though!
    I actually bought a PS3 because of Tales of Graces. True story.
  • TexsideTexside Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    I actually bought a PS3 because of Tales of Graces. True story.

    I gotta commend that level of dedication!
  • Severin MiraSeverin Mira News Director/Reviewer RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Despite that Wheels guy's brief moment of insanity, there really is only one way I can vote in this. As I explained previously Tactics Ogre is one of the better tactics systems out there, but the joyous appeal and action of the Tales battle system is just too much. I admit I was previously a bit nostalgic for the MP-based systems in the series, but after replaying a few of the others briefly I'm now confident saying Tales of Graces f is the best of those so far, even if other areas like the story and characters stop it being the best in general.

    Vote: Tales of Graces f
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  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Oppan Asbel Style

    heel_zps5e60b70f.jpg
    Becky Cunningham, Staff-at-Large
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  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Ocelot wrote: »
    Oppan Asbel Style

    heel_zps5e60b70f.jpg

    Ha!

    Listen Graces f is surely the best the Tales games have to offer. BUT the that series can only produce a B+ player at best.

    Tactics Ogre is a masterpiece. Quite possibly the finest tactics game out there. Granted part of that is the story but the battle mechanics are just the bees knees. I've played a ton of these types of games and TO just has the most consistent battlefield design, the variety of classes with no one type of class being completely useless, deep leveling mechanics, and a large number of combatants to provided a deep variety of tactics. Graces f is a brilliant action RPG, but can that kind of action RPG ever provide that kind of depth and excellence?

    I would gladly pay for a Tactics Ogre sequel with my copy of Tales of Graces f

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  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    (What amused me most was that MSPaint defaulted to Comic Sans when I was making that picture. Does it have an Asbel Detector?)
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  • TwinBahamutTwinBahamut Staff Healer RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    For a while now, I've been leaning towards voting for Tales of Graces f.

    This is kind of a hard one to justify to be honest. After all, Tales of Graces is the game that I consider to have more clear flaws... However, in the end Tactics Ogre is a game that suffers from being a little too monotonous. It has a lot of interesting skills you can use, but the game makes many of them too expensive to even equip, so you never have a chance to see battles with many of them at play. I guess this gets into character customization system problems, which isn't good... Well, regardless of the reason, battles in Tactics Ogre are often decided more by equipment and levels than skills and strategy. You can overcome level differences with skill and strategy, but the result is a very long, tedious fight. I don't really enjoy the experience. I have a hard time saying that the strategies in the game are simple, per se, but the fact that most of the game is centered simply around moving units one at a time and having them make attacks feels dull and repetitive, even if a fair amount of thought goes into it. The fact that I feel that way is strange though, since you can describe Fire Emblem the same way but I enjoy that a fair bit more. It's not helped by the fact that I've internalized many of the good strategies in the game to the point where I don't even have to think much about them anymore.

    I suppose, to elaborate upon the Fire Emblem comparison, it feels like there are not enough interesting strengths and weaknesses to any given character. A Knight with good defense is going to be extremely hard to kill no matter what you throw at him/her. A high-stat story character with an ranged weapon, like Canopus or Arycelle, is going to be a really effective attacker almost regardless of terrain or what they are attacking. The game has eight different elements and I don't have a clue how elemental weaknesses or strengths even are supposed to matter, since a fire spell or fire weapon buff works absolutely identically to a dark spell or dark weapon buff in pretty much every case I can think of, outside of the enemy using skills and spells designed to particularly thwart that element (which the AI almost never does). Just about the only meaningful hard counters in the game are found in the Dragoon class and its Beast and Dragon killing moves, and the occassional use of Clerics to exorcise the undead. For all the other classes in the game... There really isn't much. It's... dull. It's certainly quite different from Fire Emblem, which I like precisely because it has so many hard counters, weapon triangles, and other things to create a more complex situation to keep track of.

    There is also the thing that the speed-based turns and large numbers of combatants in each battle makes it harder to actually execute more complicated strategies. Battles have a frustrating amount of inertia that makes it hard to change course midway. As such, I often feel more like I'm just reacting to the enemy's moves and sticking to simple strategies rather than carrying out a more complex plan, and even simple things like making use of the Beast Tamer's Empower Dragon skills to buff a dragon's Fire Breath is a rare event that is only possible through coincidence.

    On top of all of that, the most effective use of magic in the game is status affliction spells. Attack magic is inefficient and it can be costly in both resources and time to heal afflictions, so mages on both sides of a battle spend most of the time paralyzing and petrifying their opponents. Combined with the powerful Rampart Auras that bog down movement in the frontlines, it causes many battles to slow down far more than they really should. However, these are still the best tactical options, so I guess it could be said that the game rewards you for having slower, more tedious battles.

    You know, Tales of Graces f has its own problems, but I've pretty much just convinced myself that I'm going to let it win by default. We can address those issues later. For now, Tales gets my vote.
  • JuMeSynJuMeSyn Code: Kirin Administrators
    edited June 2014
    Well, let's close this out with the reader vote.
    Tales of Graces f 163 59.49%
    Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together 111 40.51%
    Total Votes 274
    It's not what he's eating, but what's eating him that makes it ... sort of interesting.
  • PawsPaws Purr RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Two final days to discuss before we close and move on! Thanks everyone :)
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    FINE I DIDN'T WANT YOU TO VOTE FOR TACTICS OGRE ANYWAY

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    Welp, that's the end of that.

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  • TheAnimeManTheAnimeMan Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    That has got to be the stupidist running away gif I have ever seen. It's amusing but really bad running. I have never seen some one run like that before ... thank you Wheels
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  • 7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the Realm RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Wheels wrote: »
    Randy Orton says:

    Tactics Ogre's (any version of it) contains diverse tactical battles with deep character mechanics to go along with them. It could RKO even the finest the Tales series has to offer. As good as it is Graces f just can't touch the joy of carefully maneuvering troops into place to turn the tide of a tough battle.

    I didn't think of those points. I'd have changed my vote, but wasn't around a PC for the last couple of days. Too bad!
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    I suppose, to elaborate upon the Fire Emblem comparison, it feels like there are not enough interesting strengths and weaknesses to any given character. A Knight with good defense is going to be extremely hard to kill no matter what you throw at him/her. A high-stat story character with an ranged weapon, like Canopus or Arycelle, is going to be a really effective attacker almost regardless of terrain or what they are attacking. The game has eight different elements and I don't have a clue how elemental weaknesses or strengths even are supposed to matter, since a fire spell or fire weapon buff works absolutely identically to a dark spell or dark weapon buff in pretty much every case I can think of, outside of the enemy using skills and spells designed to particularly thwart that element (which the AI almost never does). Just about the only meaningful hard counters in the game are found in the Dragoon class and its Beast and Dragon killing moves, and the occassional use of Clerics to exorcise the undead. For all the other classes in the game... There really isn't much. It's... dull. It's certainly quite different from Fire Emblem, which I like precisely because it has so many hard counters, weapon triangles, and other things to create a more complex situation to keep track of.

    A few things to point out here:

    -Classes do have certain strengths/weaknesses. Generally speaking it boils down to what types of attacks they're strong against, which means keeping a diverse party is important.
    -The eight elements don't matter a whole ton excepting that using the same type multiple times against one enemy obviously gives you a bonus. More importantly each element has different status ailment afflicting affinities.
    -Archers are really good, but I think this is a good thing. Granted a certain flying archer is pretty awesome for a lot of the early game, but there are plenty of battles where terrain makes archers very difficult to use effectively. Even when they're doing most of the damage though, other classes, your knights, clerics, etc. have to defend them and keep them going.
    -Ninjas are awesome.
    -I completely disagree that attack magic is "inefficient". Rather, afflictions work best early on when attack magic is still pretty weak. That changes as the game goes on.
    -NINJAS
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This discussion has been closed.