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Episode 8: SaGa - Q&A Quest

WheelsWheels RPGamer StaffRPGamer Staff
Someone made the mistake of asking Q&A Quest to explain the SaGa series. The following podcast is the result.

Episode 8: SaGa - Q&A Quest
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Comments

  • lolwhoopslolwhoops happy accident HalifaxRPGamer Staff
    gotta give you points for releasing a 2 hour rant on a niche RPG series with little success in the west during E3. Right before Sony's show, in fact. I don't think this episode will get as much love as you guys have for these games, but here's hoping someone other than me listens.

    So, a few things. My first SaGa game was SaGa Frontier on PS1. I actually love that game. I never beat it and didn't understand half of what was going on but it was a lot of fun. I lent it to a friend years ago, along with several other RPGs, and then he stopped talking to me and I never got any of them back. It's always been too expensive to find a replacement, so I never got to try it after the age of the almighty internet. I would love to give it a go again.

    Second, my next SaGa game was Romancing SaGa on PS2. I have an artbook I think? And maybe a strategy guide. I can't remember and haven't dug them out in a while. The game felt like it had more progression and there were obvious paths you could take to the end. I think there was a good, bad, and neutral path and I ended up with neutral. I would give it another go, but I wanted to end up in the really bad route and didn't manage it so I was kinda grumbly about it.

    Third, for the next time you do a show like this I really recommend having something written out on the talking points of the show. It would be easier to talk at length about these things without the constant break in discussion if you had a clear idea of what to talk about for each game. It's only really an issue when you spend a long time on a single topic as opposed to random assorted questions.

    Lastly, I feel like you guys really to do a weekly contest on who can send the most questions. Every week tally up how many questions are in the back log by each person and then give them prizes. I may or may not just be interested in getting prizes. Kidding aside, I'm sure you guys can come up with some kinda cool thing contest thingy. Might spur more people on in commenting, questioning, and ranting.
    lolwhoops: a Gamer's Blog
    ^^is my blog! Updates whenever I feel like it! :D which happens a lot more often now!
    this is my twitter! come twit with me
  • JitawaJitawa Member Full Members
    I've played all the SaGa games, and I've beat the Gameboy and PS1 entries multiple times. I just barely squeaked out every character in Minstrel Song. Unlimited SaGa is the only one I didn't beat, and that's because I felt it was an abomination of a game.

    I miss the series, but I'm not entirely surprised it hasn't survived considering how many series SE has let flounder. I'm hoping Legend of Legacy will give me a good fix, it looks to be a lot nearer to the old games than Last Remnant was (the previous closest whoop from related staff).
  • GaijinMonogatariGaijinMonogatari RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    Awww... you had a SaGa question, and you didn't invite me? Q_Q
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2015
    Awww... you had a SaGa question, and you didn't invite me? Q_Q

    we would gladly do this again! There's lots we didn't go into

    I'm sure you know more about Romancing SaGa than we do.
    Jitawa wrote: »
    I've played all the SaGa games, and I've beat the Gameboy and PS1 entries multiple times. I just barely squeaked out every character in Minstrel Song. Unlimited SaGa is the only one I didn't beat, and that's because I felt it was an abomination of a game.

    I miss the series, but I'm not entirely surprised it hasn't survived considering how many series SE has let flounder. I'm hoping Legend of Legacy will give me a good fix, it looks to be a lot nearer to the old games than Last Remnant was (the previous closest whoop from related staff).

    I mean there hasn't been a new proper game in awhile but taking the DS remakes into account it hasn't really been that long between new releases in Japan. It just has been long absent from the West at this point.
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  • GaijinMonogatariGaijinMonogatari RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited June 2015
    OK, about the DS SaGa games. They were made by RacJin, not Matrix. They were also really awesome. The bit about Monsters inheriting powers between transformations also came in with the first remake, and the SaGa 3 remake let you do it sometimes when changing monsters back to humans/espers.

    As for FFL3, it was not only made by the Mystic Quest team, it shares some of the same sprite graphics. I am very happy that when RacJin handled the remake, they went in with question "What can we change?", to which the answer was apparently "A whole darn lot."

    Also, we did a wonderful Backtrack for the GameBoy SaGas.

    Another fun fact: Final Fantasy Legend was originally imagined as a game that could be played on long airplane trips, and Kawazu specifically used the average flight time to Hawaii from Narita as a goal for how long FFL should be.

    And, listening on...

    The original Romancing SaGa was a broken, incomplete game. It had some major issues, starting with not being able to include the entire plot that Kawazu wanted because they couldn't get permission to use the higher capacity SFC cartridges. Somewhere between 20 and 30% of the game was left out, though the Emerald quest line got included in the WSC port. Play Minstrel Song instead.

    Seriously, I still remember when I saw the first Romancing SaGa Minstrel Song ad video playing in the Hakata branch of Yodobashi Camera, back in 2005. That was the video that made me buy a PlayStation 2, the same day the game came out.

    Fun story, I actually got involved with that one abortive Romancing SaGa 2 fan translation, 14 years ago. The text dumps from that game were something insane, and the guy who tried to get it started had no idea what he was getting himself into. The two years of college Japanese I had at the time were definitely not up to the task. Also, if you do play RS2, here's a good walkthru for you. I highly recommend it ;)

    All of the SaGa games from RS2 onward also had individual character lists of learnable traits built into the coding. So, some characters would be able to spark certain skills with higher frequency.

    SaGa Frontier also suffered from the curse of incompleteness, almost as much so as Romancing SaGa. Bits and pieces of all the character stories got lost, including almost all of Lute's story. Of course, Fuse was the big loser in this case.

    There was a surprising amount of staff crossover with SaGa Frontier and Legend of Mana, as I recall. In LoM, the Dudbears' guru was this weird dog thing that was originally an enemy sprite from SaGa Frontier, even.

    As for recurring characters, remember how at the end of Final Fantasy Legend II, Dad and the main character (plus Mom) leave home in search of the next big treasure/adventure? They show up in a town later in Final Fantasy Legend III, and actually get a short quest line in SaGa 3 on the DS.

    I'm still worried about how we haven't really heard anything about SaGa 2015 besides the placeholder name and a bit of art. Hoping to see it at TGS, though. I'll be sure to write a LOT about it, and hopefully more positively than that time I played Emperor's SaGa...

    And great music to end this one with, guys. :)
  • JitawaJitawa Member Full Members
    The Gameboy SaGas were my introduction to the franchise (as I imagine they were for many of us in the states). I was rather peeved that we never got proper ports of the DS ones here, since they had added SOOOOO much great stuff to them. They're some of the best looking games on the original DS too (imho) as far as 3D games go.

    I've always wondered what a "complete" SaGa Frontier could've been. It's my favorite SaGa I think (though "Legend" 2 is up there). The Fuse/Lute butchering is already famous, but the character and art style that survived were really stand-out -- I've always really liked the style used for realm of the mystics.
  • bobbywatsonbobbywatson Random guy Full Members
    I was looking into Romancing SaGa recently, and came across a thread on romhacking.net where the main poster, known as ddstranslation, is actually planning to release a complete translation of the first game soon-ish. (Not sure what the linking policy is, but a quick Goole search should fix that.)

    As for my SaGa history, I've only played Final Fantasy Legend so far. I have carts for II and III, but I suspect the batteries don't work anymore.
  • GaijinMonogatariGaijinMonogatari RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    Those old GameBoy carts actually last a long time. I have a Japanese original version of SaGa II for GB, and it still works. Works better than my GBA, in fact.... >_<
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    Pretty sure my FFL cart still works too, had that for like 20 years
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  • bobbywatsonbobbywatson Random guy Full Members
    That's interesting... Well, I guess I now have a good reason to take my old GBC out of the drawer!
  • BudaiBudai Paladin Full Members
    My favorite has to be the romancing saga remake. But yes the setting is bizarre. Like you will be in a medival setting, hop on a modern day air plane, fly to a city made of a snails shell, and bust out of a prison with your Uzi while riding in a truck, and climb a tower of steel. It's a strange setting. You just got to roll with it, like you both have said.
  • severinmiraseverinmira Managing Editor RPGamer Staff
    Dear Wheels,

    What is wrong with people that is causing Bamco to give us Sword Art Online but not God Eater?
    "Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so."
    Twitter: severinmira | Xbox Live: Severin Mira | PSN: severinmira (EU) | NNID: severinmira
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  • GaijinMonogatariGaijinMonogatari RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    Budai wrote: »
    My favorite has to be the romancing saga remake. But yes the setting is bizarre. Like you will be in a medival setting, hop on a modern day air plane, fly to a city made of a snails shell, and bust out of a prison with your Uzi while riding in a truck, and climb a tower of steel. It's a strange setting. You just got to roll with it, like you both have said.

    Think you got Romancing SaGa and SaGa Frontier confused ;) SaGa Frontier is the bizarro-verse of impossible anachronisms, while Romancing SaGa is practically a tribute to Kawazu's days playing Dragonlance.
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    Dear Wheels,

    What is wrong with people that is causing Bamco to give us Sword Art Online but not God Eater?

    OMG YES, an excuse to rant about this.
    lolwhoops wrote: »
    gotta give you points for releasing a 2 hour rant on a niche RPG series with little success in the west during E3.

    For us the right time to talk about SaGa is any dang time :).
    Ask Wheels- This Week's Episode
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  • bobbywatsonbobbywatson Random guy Full Members
    Wheels wrote: »
    Pretty sure my FFL cart still works too, had that for like 20 years


    Well, color me impressed: Both my FFL2 and FFL3 carts' batteries still work. And so does my old GameBoy Color, in fact...
  • lolwhoopslolwhoops happy accident HalifaxRPGamer Staff
    get a gameboy advance sp second hand for like $20 and experience the joy that is the SP.
    lolwhoops: a Gamer's Blog
    ^^is my blog! Updates whenever I feel like it! :D which happens a lot more often now!
    this is my twitter! come twit with me
  • bobbywatsonbobbywatson Random guy Full Members
    lolwhoops wrote: »
    get a gameboy advance sp second hand for like $20 and experience the joy that is the SP.

    I already have one of those, somewhere around here. I just wanted an excuse to give my old GBC a try.
  • BudaiBudai Paladin Full Members
    edited June 2015
    Budai wrote: »
    My favorite has to be the romancing saga remake. But yes the setting is bizarre. Like you will be in a medival setting, hop on a modern day air plane, fly to a city made of a snails shell, and bust out of a prison with your Uzi while riding in a truck, and climb a tower of steel. It's a strange setting. You just got to roll with it, like you both have said.

    Think you got Romancing SaGa and SaGa Frontier confused ;) SaGa Frontier is the bizarro-verse of impossible anachronisms, while Romancing SaGa is practically a tribute to Kawazu's days playing Dragonlance.

    I've got poor grammar. Meant my favorite is romancing saga remake. And then, in a separate train of thought, agreed with the sentiment that the setting was bizarre in frontier 1.
  • BudaiBudai Paladin Full Members
    Question- I have a reputation to upkeep around here as someone who likes games no one else does. I always liked 7th saga and paladins quest. Both aren't held to high regard. What do you think of those two games? Other than the saga games, what are some others than you both enjoy that feel have gotten the worst rap?
  • BudaiBudai Paladin Full Members
    And I know some variation of that might have been asked so I'll ask something completely different just in case. Does censorship in games bother either of you? A lot of nes and snes had small censorship moments, but are there any bigger ones or even those that you didn't like? Or if you don't mind it, tell us why.
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