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Round 3, Match 26: Final Fantasy VI (2) vs Tales of Graces f - Winner (3)

JuMeSynJuMeSyn Code: KirinAdministrators
edited June 2014 in Battle Royale!
Match 26: Which battle system do you prefer?
Final Fantasy VI
Tales of Graces f

This one begins 7 minutes past midnight on Wednesday for easterners, ending in about another 48 hours.
Mac, Alex, Trent and Mr. Apps will debate this whenever they feel like it!
Closed this sucker down as of about 10 minutes prior to midnight on Friday, but the votes are cast.
It's not what he's eating, but what's eating him that makes it ... sort of interesting.
«13

Comments

  • 7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the Realm RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    People who think Final Fantasy VI still has one of the best battle systems in 2014 are like adults who say their college years were best years of their lives. You've clearly done something wrong with your life.

    I'm playing Atelier Rorona Plus right now. It has an ATB battle system that is better than FF6's, and it isn't even the best battle system in the Atelier series.
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    7thCircle wrote: »
    People who think Final Fantasy VI still has one of the best battle systems in 2014 are like adults who say their college years were best years of their lives. You've clearly done something wrong with your life.

    I'm playing Atelier Rorona Plus right now. It has an ATB battle system that is better than FF6's, and it isn't even the best battle system in the Atelier series.

    Have any reasoning other than bad jokes?
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  • 7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the Realm RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Wheels wrote: »
    Have any reasoning other than bad jokes?

    Absolutely nothing in that post was a joke.
    The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    7thCircle wrote: »
    Absolutely nothing in that post was a joke.

    Maybe not intentionally...

    So this battle pits two of my all time favorites against each other, some brilliant ATB against the best battle system in the Tales series. Going to be a tough call. Please enjoy this in the meantime.
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  • Rya_ReisenderRya_Reisender Solipsist Snowflake Full Members
    edited June 2014
    I wouldn't say Final Fantasy VI is one of the best battle systems in 2014, but I'd say it's one of Squaresoft's best battle systems. The speed and versatility made it so good. Something they never managed to copy this good again in all the sequels. Also it has 4 characters in battle! Most games afterwards only had 3 (except IX but that one just wasn't as good).

    However in the big scope and especially compared to the battle system of Tales of Graces or all the tri-Ace/tri-Crescendo battle systems, FFVI's combat system isn't all that good. It just can't compare to them at all.

    My vote clearly goes to Tales of Graces this round.
  • DarkRPGMasterDarkRPGMaster A Witness to Destruction Moderators
    edited June 2014
    While I love FF6's battle system for the character ability individuality and for being one of the best showings of ATB there is from the SNES era, I have to give this to Tales of Graces F. It takes a special kind of ARPG battle system to have higher difficulties more dependent on your actual skill than on artificial difficulty, and Tales of Graces F manages to hit that sweet spot.
    "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."
  • severinmiraseverinmira Managing Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    An quick initial thoughts post that sets out where I'm quite heavily leaning as I'm busy today and probably won't be posting again until I vote tomorrow, although will of course be reading any arguments put forth.

    Probably the best way to sum up my thoughts on Final Fantasy VI's battle system is that it's a great template. There's plenty of neat little things, e.g. suplexing a train - that always earns points, but as a system I'm struggling to find many aspects that make it stand out as an amazing battle system. Final Fantasy VI's battles are superbly supported by the rest of the game, but playing the game purely for its battle system isn't something I could see me doing. They're great, but at this stage I'm looking for a special spark to give my vote and I'm not convinced the game's system has that. That said, the way it brings in so many different characters and styles of fighting is excellent.

    As I've mentioned elsewhere, with Graces f I initially wasn't a fan of the removal of TP, but after replaying both this game and a couple of previous Tales games I realised it was nostalgia speaking, and am fully on board with the idea seeing more iterations of the system down the line as opposed to the more traditional TP-using systems. Unlike its opponent isn't quite as well supported by the rest of the game (although it still has plenty), but I really enjoyed the replay mostly because battles were so fun. Tales of Graces f has that spark that makes me want to get into the next battle.
    "Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so."
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    Final Fantasy XIV: Sevvi Taubemira (Leviathan)
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited June 2014
    Final Fantasy VI is clearly going to be a nostalgic favorite here, but I think Alex said it best by calling it a great template. I think it's gotten by so far in this Royale by being a good stand-in for traditional Japanese-developed RPG gameplay. If there was ever a game anyone would want to copy, it would be one of the best places to start. The great cast of characters with unique skills was a big plus, too. I can't take anything away from FFVI when it comes to its battle system. It's old school, but it sure did work in its time. Sadly, checking out other JRPGs that have improved on the formula shows just how dated this is. It's not bad at all, and like 7th said, sometimes people did have their best days back in high school.

    But Tales of Graces f is something totally different. I have tried a fair share of Tales games (Symphonia, Abyss, Radiant Mythology, Vesperia, Xillia) and didn't care for them at all. But for some reason when I played Tales of Graces f, it was something totally different. Sure the protagonists were silly, the story was cliched, but it didn't matter because I was having fun with the combat. I'll say this, I hate MP/TP management systems, so Graces f doing away with TP was the best thing ever. It made the system click with me in a way no other Tales had. It was fun and I appreciate it for that.

    Which is the better battle system? Hard to say if tried and true is better than new and fresh. We shall see.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • AncientRuneAncientRune Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    FFVI all the way for no reason other than I think Graces is a bigger challenge for Xenoblade
  • BleuVIIBleuVII Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    I like what people are saying about Tales of Graces F, and pointing out that FFVI is just a perfection of the traditional JRPG mechanic. That being said, it's a good mechanic! When I try to go back and play old-school RPGs, FFVI is one of the only ones that is still truly enjoyable. Here are a couple of things that FFVI just nailed:

    * Character Abilities - made each character unique, even if some were more useful than others.
    * Relics - More than just adding stat+2, the relics you equipped actually changed the way the battles unfolded.
    * Speed - This is more ATB in general. Slow characters are much more of a hindrance here than in turn-based RPGs. They actually get fewer actions. Fast characters, in turn, get tons of action.
    * Blue Magic/Lore - the only game where I feel this has ever worked, and it was awesome.
    * ESPERS! - the fact that any character could learn any spell was amazing. FFXI almost came close with its equipment, but I have yet to see this mechanic work half as well as it did in FFVI.
  • Zeboyd GamesZeboyd Games Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    The actual battle system in FF6 isn't anything special. However, the battles tend to be enjoyable because of the support the system receives from other factors (like all the cool character-specific skills).

    Tales of Graces F, on the other hand, has a really good battle system and is often cited as having the best combat system in the Tales series which is a series that is known for its combat systems.
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  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Macstorm wrote: »
    Which is the better battle system? Hard to say if tried and true is better than new and fresh. We shall see.

    That's part of the problem in figuring out what to vote for here. We have the benefit of nearly two decades of Final Fantasy VI to appreciate the quality of FFVI's ATB combat and it obviously has stood the test of time.

    Graces F is fresh, and a nice evolution of several Tales games we never saw in the West, making it feel even more fresh. So you have to make sure you aren't voting for it just because it is the new hotness.

    Going to be a tough vote.
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  • flamethrowerflamethrower Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    FFVI all the way for no reason other than I think Graces is a bigger challenge for Xenoblade
    If Xenoblade cannot defeat Graces then it doesn't deserve to win, plain and simple.

    So these are both active systems. I think Graces takes the cake though, because it doesn't give the player any break at all. On your attacking turn, you still must dodge attacks and/or guard (not button mash, tough that can work at lower difficulties). And when it's not your turn you have to dodge/guard as well.

    In FF6 the break is when you are waiting for the bar to fill.
  • JCServantJCServant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Macstorm wrote: »
    Final Fantasy VI is clearly going to be a nostalgic favorite here, but I think Alex said it best by calling it a great template. I think it's gotten by so far in this Royale by being a good stand-in for traditional Japanese-developed RPG gameplay. If there was ever a game anyone would want to copy, it would be one of the best places to start. The great cast of characters with unique skills was a big plus, too. I can't take anything away from FFVI when it comes to its battle system. It's old school, but it sure did work in its time. Sadly, checking out other JRPGs that have improved on the formula shows just how dated this is. It's not bad at all, and like 7th said, sometimes people did have their best days back in high school.

    I will have to agree to disagree here :) And, for the record, I played this well after high school...just sayin'. I have no problem pointing out when games that I love just didn't age well. NES versions of FF1 and DQIV, as well as my beloved Gold Box D&D games all come to mind. When I look at them through rose colored classes, I praise them to death... but when I talk about them with others, I am careful to point out that they just didn't age well, at all specifically in their original iterations...the remakes of the JRPGs are a little easier to swallow, though not much). To make it more interesting, I'm usually the one crying out how boring traditional JRPG battle systems are. Attack attack heal! Boring!!

    With all that being said, I can go back and play FFVI any day of the week and still have a good time. In fact, I'm playing FFV, which doesn't quite have as much going for it, and I'm having fun. I do believe that these iterations of the ATB *do* stand the test of time rather well. Final Fantasy VI combat has more tactical choices and options than your standard JRPG, and the added pressure of the ATB system keeps you more engaged through out the battle than your standard turn based JRPG. I feel its one of the best balances of depth tempered by that ATB sub-system. The variety of monsters/encounters (and that near unforgettable final dungeon which forces you to split and utilize nearly your entire group) insures that the system doesn't grow stale. I happily did some of the hours long side stuff because I enjoyed the battle system so much... and that's saying something given my gaming habits.

    I really cannot compare and contrast with Tales of Graces F, as I have not played it... but I will certainly stand up and make another statement (as I have several times in this contest) that Final Fantasy's battle system not only stands strongly on its own when evaluted apart from the other excellent elements of the game, but it also shines brightly when compared and contrasted with battle systems in more modern games.
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  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited June 2014
    The actual battle system in FF6 isn't anything special. However, the battles tend to be enjoyable because of the support the system receives from other factors (like all the cool character-specific skills).
    Yeah, those character-specific skills are really what make FFVI's battle system stand out to me. Without those, this wouldn't really even be a contest.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Hi guys. Look at the top five games list on my bio page. Why? Because then you'll realize what this means I'm saying here.

    I vote Tales of Graces f
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  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited June 2014
    You just want revenge on Xenoblade for beating Dark Souls!
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • JormungandJormungand Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    When I first played Graces f, I had gone into it having read a lot of commentary praising the battle system. Among the Tales community, anyway, it seems Graces is a particular favorite when it comes to battle systems. I was impressed by the side-stepping and no-TP system, and thought both were great changes. Unfortunately, there was little else I was pleased with. In particular, the controls felt very unresponsive to me, and it wasn't very fun to play. I haven't had this problem in the other (console) Tales games I've played, so I don't know what was up. But it was definitely a problem, and made battles a chore. In addition, I found no characters I enjoyed playing as--I ended up maining Hubert, who is basically my least favorite character, because his controls actually felt functional.
    Richard too, but we all know how that turns out. Darn you, Tales Wiki, for making it seem like Richard is a permanent party member.
    Also, the damage numbers were excessive on purpose--to look flashy. Really don't need that, especially in an action RPG where I want accurate information delivered in the cleanest possible manner.

    I'm playing Xillia right now, and it feels much more responsive. I felt the same about Vesperia and both Symphonia games. So of the Tales games I've played, Graces f is my least favorite in nearly every category.

    I will happily vote for Final Fantasy VI. In my mind, functional turn-based will always beat out flashy action-based.
  • Strawberry EggsStrawberry Eggs Wannabe Mistborn Lucario Administrators
    edited June 2014
    Even though I've played Final Fantasy VI, I'm tempted to back Tales of Graces f, if mostly because I enjoyed the battle system to the Tales games I've played (well, really just Symphonia and Symphonia: Dawn of the New World) more than I did Final Fantasy VI. Not haing actually played Graces and not knowing how different it is from those games, I really shouldn't back for either. :P
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  • JCServantJCServant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Wow...reader vote is close on this one so far!

    Final Fantasy VI 73 51.41%
    Tales of Graces f 69 48.59%
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  • TexsideTexside Member Full Members
    edited June 2014
    Neck and neck!

    I lean towards FFVI here. This isn't just nostalgia; FFVI holds up for me in a way other, older games have not. The ATB system is nice; more than that, I think it gets a nice mix of character development and character skills that make battle exciting. I would submit it's better than the PSX Final Fantasies (but am not sure because dang is that sphere grid in FFX nice), even: the materia were more fun and more rewarding to level, I thought.

    I haven't played Tales of Graces f, sadly, so I can't say for sure. On an entirely subjective note, I just like ATB systems better than action RPGs (or quasi-action RPGs; what's a Tales game, anyways?).
  • watcherwatcher Veteran RPGamer Full Members
    edited June 2014
    Sorry FFVI, you know I love you, but I gotta go with Tales of Graces f on this.
  • Rya_ReisenderRya_Reisender Solipsist Snowflake Full Members
    edited June 2014
    The poll just shows that more people need to play Tales of Graces.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    The poll just shows that more people need to play Tales of Graces.

    No poll is needed to show that.
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  • InstaTrentInstaTrent Opinion Guy RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Unlike some of our contributors, I have no great fondness for the Tales games. I've always found the entries in the series to be extremely formulaic, following Japanese conventions and aesthetics that I've always thought to be less than desirable. The battles, in particular, have always annoyed me because I never felt that these games clearly communicated to the player how to fight well in-battle. Between instanced skill use, instanced item use, and random button-mashing, determining a "winning strategy" seemed, at least to me, more awkward than trying to shave a greased weasel. To that point, I still feel as though Tales of Graces f doesn't do a great job communicating to the player the finer points of its battle system. However, I am also of the opinion that it is the best Tales battle system I've indulged in. I happily forgo technical points in favor of chain capacity, and the inclusion of the Eleth Gauge makes battles a bit more spicy (the user receives unlimited chain capacity to use skills and become resistant to stunning). Mixing assault artes and burst artes to chain huge combos is fun time too, and I'm also relieved to say that your AI in Graces f have finally evolved enough to make rational decisions in battle over impulsive. Your team's effectiveness in battle is no longer solely dependent on your in-battle performance. I dig that.

    Final Fantasy VI has already been pegged here as being a great template, which I think is fair to say. Unfortunately, labeling it as such is akin to calling it a relic or antiquated and also understates how fundamentally excellent it is. This is a very tight battle system. Is it straightforward in execution? Yes. Is it basic or bare-bones? No. Disregarding the fact that Final Fantasy VI has a great deal of unique story-based events that alter the flow of battle, combat will also feel different based on whom you choose to include in your battle team and the unique kinds of skills you choose to enact. These aren't just similar characters sprites with with slightly different armor and weapon sets; your party members feel like individuals, because their roles in battles gives them each their own flavor. There are 24 playable characters in total, each with their own skill sets, weaknesses, and advantages - which is nothing to sneeze at - an this level of variety adds a great deal to battle. Battle also ties in greatly to the skill and character progression in Final Fantasy VI. The Esper junctioning system (for lack of a better term) allows you to decide who gets what abilities and level-up bonuses based on their use in battle. Hell, half the reason why my playthroughs are always more than 60 hours is due to my intent on giving everyone of my party members every skill attainable. The interchange between skill development and battles pushes me to invest more time, as battling is more akin to training than it is a chore. I can't say the same in regards to how I approached battles in Graces f.

    For what it's worth, I did really enjoy Graces f. I just don't think its battle system is that much different from any other Tales game, and the system doesn't do as much as Final Fantasy VI's as far as informing the personalities of the characters and pushing the gamer to play more.

    Vote: Final Fantasy VI
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  • JCServantJCServant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    FF6 is pulling ahead....





    Final Fantasy VI
    133
    53.20%
    grey.gif


    Tales of Graces f
    117
    46.80%
    grey.gif


    Total Votes
    250



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  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    FFVI all the way for no reason other than I think Graces is a bigger challenge for Xenoblade

    Hey, no strategic voting in this contest! Save that for American Idol and the Ontario provincial election.
    Becky Cunningham, Staff-at-Large
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  • severinmiraseverinmira Managing Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    Oh that's right, I need to vote at some point. It should've been apparent that I was initially siding with Tales of Graces f and for this battle that's where my vote is going.
    "Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so."
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    Final Fantasy XIV: Sevvi Taubemira (Leviathan)
  • JCServantJCServant Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2014
    If my math is correct...it's currently in Mac's hands. If he votes Tales, it's sealed. If he votes FF6, he puts it into the fans' hands. That's currently leaning towards FF6, though its close enough for a swing if there's a push. Hmmmm
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  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited June 2014
    Crap, I should have figured it would come to this. Bring it on, folks. Let me know which side to pick.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
This discussion has been closed.