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Review - Drakengard 3

7thCircle7thCircle Proofer of the RealmRPGamer Staff
edited May 2014 in Latest Updates
This silence was mine, but now it can be yours, too. Come join Zero and her band of sex-crazed misfits as they seek to kill her siblings.

Review
The lesson here is that dreams inevitably lead to hideous implosions.

Comments

  • InstaTrentInstaTrent Opinion Guy RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    7thCircle wrote: »
    This silence was mine, but now it can be yours, too. Come join Zero and her band of sex-crazed misfits as they seek to kill her siblings.

    Review

    Wasn't expecting much of this game. Seems like it is more tolerable though than Drakengard or Drakengard 2. That's good at least.
    "To tell you the truth, I like drinking tea and eating fresh vegetables, but that doesn't fit with my super-cool attitude. I guess I have to accept this about myself."
  • ShayminShaymin The Gratitude Pokemon Halifax, New SealandFull Members
    edited May 2014
    That last negative bullet point has me intrigued, but I'm worried that the content on the way would turn me off. Mac, does it come across as being trashy for the sake of trashiness?
    "The flowers all over its body burst into bloom if it is lovingly hugged and senses gratitude."
  • riulynriulyn Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    The game sounds pretty much what I was expecting to get, though I was hoping for more.
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited May 2014
    Shaymin wrote: »
    That last negative bullet point has me intrigued, but I'm worried that the content on the way would turn me off. Mac, does it come across as being trashy for the sake of trashiness?
    The content is all talk, there's nothing visually trashy. But the disciples are a little vulgar. I would not say that anything is trashy for the sake of trashiness, though.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • DarkRPGMasterDarkRPGMaster A Witness to Destruction Moderators
    edited May 2014
    I'm going to need to get this to complete my Drakengard collection, sounds like.
    "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."
  • GrayWolf323GrayWolf323 Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    will wait for a sale, thanks for the great review!
  • InstaTrentInstaTrent Opinion Guy RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    There have been a few people who have read this review and subsequently used its content as a weapon against the credibility of the reviewer of IGN's Drakengard 3 review. This really shouldn't have to be said, but don't be that guy. It's not fair to either site or either reviewer.
    "To tell you the truth, I like drinking tea and eating fresh vegetables, but that doesn't fit with my super-cool attitude. I guess I have to accept this about myself."
  • RyumoauRyumoau Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    i kinda wished i waited for reviews before i blindly preordered the game on psn. I'm enjoying it so far but its alot linear than i imagined. When i heard it was an action jrpg i expected maybe something closer to kingdom hearts, but its actually more like a linear mission based Dynasty Warriors game. The story is weird enough to keep me intrigued so far though, but man is this game not pretty to look at.

    If i could go back in time i would have waited for a price drop and saved my $50 for Wolfenstein (which wasn't on my radar till i saw all the positive feedback). But oh well, at least the game isn't awful to play. :)
    "To die without leaving a corpse....that is the way of the Garo"
    PSN id: Ryumoau
  • Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    Just started playing this, I think you were too kind to the visuals. It looks WORSE than Nier, and the screen-tearing is just awful.

    On the plus side, Mikhail is adorable
    Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...
  • storino03storino03 Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    The screen tearing and slowdowns should be somewhat alleviated by the PSN version of the game, or at the very least, future patches.
  • Adriaan den OudenAdriaan den Ouden Δ Hidden Forbidden Holy Ground RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    For a game that looks like this, there is no excuse for ANY slowdown. And it took over 30 minutes to install from the disc (mandatory install). If its like this despite the install, I doubt a full digital version will be much better
    Maybe I'll log out and check my e-mail or something...
  • ShayminShaymin The Gratitude Pokemon Halifax, New SealandFull Members
    edited May 2014
    There's at least one review I know (Jim Sterling) who reported the game taking over a full day to download/install.
    "The flowers all over its body burst into bloom if it is lovingly hugged and senses gratitude."
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited May 2014
    I liked the character designs, which is why I didn't totally crush it in terms of visuals. But yeah, the slowdown and tearing are awful.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • PimpaliciousPimpalicious Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    The reviews have convinced me to wait for a sale, especially the slowdown complaints. Considering the graphics aren't that special and the game takes up so much HD space I thought it might at least run well.
  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Shaymin wrote: »
    There's at least one review I know (Jim Sterling) who reported the game taking over a full day to download/install.

    Yikes! I have a physical copy, which definitely took its sweet time to install. Sounds like that's the recommended version, then.
    Becky Cunningham, Happy Snappy RPGamer Alum
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • JormungandJormungand Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Did anyone else experience a severe graphic glitch in the first boss battle? With the dragon in chapter 0? As if it was casting this long black shadow that blocked your view (it was clearly a glitch and impeded vision significantly).

    Anyway, the music is terrible. To quote RPGamer regarding a score of "5":
    Any individual item score that is given a '5' represents an aspect of the game that is fantastic, very memorable, groundbreaking, or is simply so well demonstrated as to help define the entire game through its effort.
    Seriously? Well, since RPGamer (like most sites) lump in audio altogether (which doesn't make sense), it certainly isn't the music that fits any of the adjectives listed above.

    Was the reviewer so smitten with NIER's soundtrack (also terrible) that D3 automatically received a high score?

    I'm not actually trying to be trollish here: it's not great music. You can call it good, adequate, in service to its purpose, fits the game, etc. That's all fine. But "Very Memorable?" There's barely anything to remember. "Groudbreaking"? Not a chance--groundbreaking is reserved for scores that break the mold and defy standards set by peers.

    Please, RPGamer, split apart music and audio. They don't belong together. They don't even occupy the same general area of expertise. Sound effects =/= music composition. Voice acting =/= music composition. Environmental audio =/= music composition.
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited May 2014
    As the reviewer, I stand by my 5 on music/sound because all of those were great. I know you say you're not trolling, but this is not the first time you've disagreed with music opinions by taking something that is completely subjective (and my personal opinion) and saying that I couldn't possibly feel this way.

    That said, you have a good point about music and audio not really being the same thing. If our side scores really mattered for anything other than our own opinion there could be a good case for moving that out, but our scores are not an average or anything so it really doesn't. Again, I stand by the 5 because the music and voice work combined are great. This Silence is Mine, Final Song, and The Rising Fool/Phanuel are all fantastic examples. I have no issues with the score I gave on music.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • laazyeyelaazyeye Pretty much... Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Jormungand wrote: »
    Did anyone else experience a severe graphic glitch in the first boss battle? With the dragon in chapter 0? As if it was casting this long black shadow that blocked your view (it was clearly a glitch and impeded vision significantly).

    Anyway, the music is terrible. To quote RPGamer regarding a score of "5":

    Seriously? Well, since RPGamer (like most sites) lump in audio altogether (which doesn't make sense), it certainly isn't the music that fits any of the adjectives listed above.

    Was the reviewer so smitten with NIER's soundtrack (also terrible) that D3 automatically received a high score?

    I'm not actually trying to be trollish here: it's not great music. You can call it good, adequate, in service to its purpose, fits the game, etc. That's all fine. But "Very Memorable?" There's barely anything to remember. "Groudbreaking"? Not a chance--groundbreaking is reserved for scores that break the mold and defy standards set by peers.

    Please, RPGamer, split apart music and audio. They don't belong together. They don't even occupy the same general area of expertise. Sound effects =/= music composition. Voice acting =/= music composition. Environmental audio =/= music composition.

    Music is obviously a very subjective matter, as are reviews.

    Additionally, while I do agree that there are separate elements of audio, I think it'd be hard to implement into these reviews as you'd then have to start doing so for other aspects of the game (visuals can easily be split as well).
  • JormungandJormungand Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Macstorm wrote: »
    As the reviewer, I stand by my 5 on music/sound because all of those were great. I know you say you're not trolling, but this is not the first time you've disagreed with music opinions by taking something that is completely subjective (and my personal opinion) and saying that I couldn't possibly feel this way.
    Unfortunately it's not a topic I'm ever going to make friends over. While it may be hard to believe, of the hundred plus VGM composers I regularly listen to, I'm actually positive about the majority of them.

    The problem is inherent in review-writing globally, not just particular reviewers and not just particular reviewing sites. Music is frequently paid the least amount of attention and given the least amount of coverage, and is frequently included as an afterthought in reviews (if even that). Typically what is said of music in reviews is declarative, generalized, and insubstantial (and often inaccurate--as in, actual factual information pertaining to the music).

    Consider, Macstorm, that even though you scored music as a perfect 5 and the highest sub-item on your score sheet, the content you devoted to explaining that score fits literally within the span of two sentences. Your one point about the music is that there is indeed "variety". Is that the key to success, in your book? If it were, then surely games like Luminous Arc and Final Fantasy XIII and Rhapsody and Half-Minute Hero would've all scored 5s on music. (Although the latter you directly stated lacks in variety, which really is inaccurate and can be proven so, especially given what seems to be your definition of variety based on D3)

    But I'm guessing mere "variety" isn't the only thing you consider when judging music. Then again, what little you said of the music here hardly convinces me otherwise.
  • Phillip WillisPhillip Willis Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    Wow...Jormun...way to go on the offensive. You can say you don't agree with something without being rude, eh? Don't prove your points by trying to make someone else look stupid. You know what they say about he who slings mud around.

    I'm a grade A type myself...A for analytic and logical....which is the direction you seem to be coming from here, friend. So, let me help you out.

    It's been a LONG time since I've done any official review for the site, but I would point out that a 5 does not mean or imply perfection. As you quoted above, it means that, to the reviewer, it was "fantastic, very memorable, groundbreaking, or is simply so well demonstrated as to help define the entire game through its effort."

    I underline the word "Or" because it is quite important here. If the music in the game meets any of those criteria in the reviewers eyes, by this definition, he/she is justified in giving it a "5." And since most, if not all, of the qualifiers are subjective, that means it will be super hard to 'disprove' the reviewers. You can never conclusively disprove someone's opinion. After all, just because I don't like classical music (I really don't), doesn't mean others (such as my wife) cannot find it 'memorable' or 'fantastic.'

    Please stop trying to set up straw man arguments against the reviewer or the review system, eh? You're more than welcome to say that you don't agree. And, if you can give support to your point of view with details and facts, that may even help convince others. Awesome! We encourage that type of intelligent dialogue. However, please do so without attacking the reviewer, the site, or others' opinions. I assure you, if you do, many here will dismiss your argument regardless of how well it is supported.... wasting your times as well as ours.
    Co-Host on RPGBacktrack. Follow me on Twitter and sub to my blog if you would like!
  • JormungandJormungand Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    I don't think I wrote anything that was offensive, attacking, or straw-man in any way.
  • Cassandra RamosCassandra Ramos Eternal Kyoshi Administrators
    edited May 2014
    Yes, music often gets little in the way explanation in reviews, and not just on this site. Many people, myself included, find it difficult to explain and critique music as one would a game's visuals or gameplay systems. It's a shame, but I do not fault people for being unable to. Speaking for myself, I do try to go as write a fair amount on music when I review games. I tend to go into details on the composers or specific tracks that I especially enjoyed and thought were well-done. It is, admittedly, not all that in-depth, though (and I also haven't written one for a long while now. I probably should, lest I get rusty).
    Bravely second...
    The courage to try again...

    Twitter: BerryEggs

  • ironmageironmage chaotic neutral observer SaskatoonFull Members
    edited May 2014
    Y'know, Jormungand, if you had countered the review with a review of your own, instead of being purely reactive, people might be responding to you differently. Seems to me you've said less about D3's soundtrack than the review did.

    I think it would be helpful if you could provide an example of video-game music criticism that you consider well done; written by someone other than yourself, of course. Four or five examples would probably be adequate, preferably by more than two authors. Showing someone how to do something right is better than simply complaining they're doing it wrong. Start a new thread, if you think it's too off topic for this one.

    On the other hand, if nobody out there is doing this type of criticism in a fashion you consider acceptable, then perhaps you should stop and reflect a bit.

    Strictly considered, writing about music is as illogical as singing about economics. All the other arts can be talked about in the terms of ordinary life and experience. A poem, a statue, a painting or a play is a representation of somebody or something, and can be measurably described (the purely aesthetic values aside) by describing what it represents.
    Only the livin' have the privilege of sayin' they'll fight ta the last breath.
    And words like conviction and resolve don't mean much to a dead man...
    --Raven (Tales of Vesperia)
  • MacstormMacstorm Ysy St. Administrators
    edited May 2014
    Jormungand wrote: »
    I don't think I wrote anything that was offensive, attacking, or straw-man in any way.
    Nor do I. I just don't agree with your opinion of my opinion is all. That said, I agree we could talk more about music and should, but when you have a review that's long already, some things will get cut. Maybe this was one time it should have been longer and more detailed.
    "The universe is already mad. Anything else would be redundant."
    Twitter @FinalMacstorm
  • minneyarminneyar Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Jormungand wrote: »
    I don't think I wrote anything that was offensive, attacking, or straw-man in any way.
    Jormungand wrote:
    Was the reviewer so smitten with NIER's soundtrack (also terrible) that D3 automatically received a high score?

    Stating that Macstorm would give the music a high score solely because he liked NieR's soundtrack is insulting to his intelligence and integrity. Also, NieR's soundtrack -- regardless of whether you liked it -- is widely acknowledged by people who both loved and hated the game as being one of its best aspects. It has consistently received incredibly high scores in reviews. Casually calling it "terrible" with no justification is belligerent and provocative, and it also severely decreases your credibility in the eyes of anybody who loved NieR's soundtrack.

    That's the part of your post that is offensive and attacking, just for reference.
  • InstaTrentInstaTrent Opinion Guy RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    minneyar wrote: »
    Stating that Macstorm would give the music a high score solely because he liked NieR's soundtrack is insulting to his intelligence and integrity.

    I'm going to have to agree with this. It's incredibly offensive to make an assertion of this nature.

    As an aside, I know of few writers of greater integrity than Michael. The guy stands by all his opinions, and it is important to recognize that a review is just an opinion.
    "To tell you the truth, I like drinking tea and eating fresh vegetables, but that doesn't fit with my super-cool attitude. I guess I have to accept this about myself."
  • JormungandJormungand Member Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Macstorm wrote: »
    Nor do I. I just don't agree with your opinion of my opinion is all. That said, I agree we could talk more about music and should, but when you have a review that's long already, some things will get cut. Maybe this was one time it should have been longer and more detailed.
    I'm glad you think so. That's about all I expected to get out of this.

    Some time ago, on these forums, I wrote some long and probably boring rant about how I have slowed down my critiques of others' reviews when it came to music. The reactions here summarize the text I wrote those many months (years?) ago pretty well.

    Yes, I could have and should have approached this differently. But it probably wouldn't have made much of a difference. Music is a sacred cow, and is entirely subjective, and this attitude mostly precludes deep discussion on the topic. This is great for most people, who are, indeed, probably in the same boat as Strawberry. That's because your opinion about music is automatically protected, immune in a way, from attacks on it. You don't even have to defend yourself: just say, "hey, it's my opinion, and also music is always subjective, so I win".

    One can have expertise in the skill of creating music, and there are parts of music construction and performance that indeed are objective. There's probably no analogy I could possibly draw up that wouldn't be offensive to someone. Professional athletes, maybe? Many people play a sport as children and young adults, but few have the skill to go on to play that sport professionally. Of course, to get to that point, you have to be scouted and rigorously tried. There's no such trial for the realm of professional art, so anything goes. This is a blessing, mostly: it opens the door to all, and that's how it should be. Of course, as a side effect, that means that those with less skill also find their way into the field. There, that was actually pretty mild, but I'm sure someone's thinking I just compared their favorite composer to a high school kid.

    ironmage, of course music is written about in the way you describe. In the realm of video game music, not so much. The review I was going to link to seems to have gone down with the now-dead VGM website it was hosted at. Instead, it's best to read the reviews of classical musical albums and concerts. You'll also find excellent material in the liner notes of many classical CDs. Writing about music may be a fool's errand, but many have done so admirably and with great clarity.
  • OcelotOcelot is not declawed Full Members
    edited May 2014
    Honestly, it's best for all if in-depth reviews of game soundtracks are left for specialty reviews that focus solely on said soundtracks. The gaming audience that cares strongly about that kind of analysis is fairly small, and many readers would be turned off by a general review that spends too much time critiquing the soundtrack. Quality music and art criticism require different and specialized training and background than critique of story and gameplay, and few people are highly skilled in all four areas.

    It's best for individual reviewers to stick most closely to the areas in which they personally excel, which lends individual colour to their reviews. For instance, some reviewers provide in-depth technical analysis of a game's graphics, while others focus more strongly on elements of graphic design. Some reviewers prefer to look at games in a vacuum separate from the real world, while others like me have social science backgrounds and enjoy looking at how a game's content reflects social issues.

    I agree that it'd be nice for all of us to up our game and learn to write more clearly and cogently about game music, but I wouldn't expect any general review to have the level of music critique that you find in a review of a purely musical release such as a CD or orchestral performance. That's a mis-fit for the generalist reviewer's skillset and a mis-fit for the general reading audience.
    Becky Cunningham, Happy Snappy RPGamer Alum
    Twitter: BeckyCFreelance
  • Phillip WillisPhillip Willis Certified Polygameist RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    Jormungand wrote: »
    Yes, I could have and should have approached this differently.

    Thanks for admitting this. I'm all about making points and having discussions about our favorite hobbies...and even disagree... I just like to see it kept positive.
    But it probably wouldn't have made much of a difference. Music is a sacred cow, and is entirely subjective, and this attitude mostly precludes deep discussion on the topic. This is great for most people, who are, indeed, probably in the same boat as Strawberry. That's because your opinion about music is automatically protected, immune in a way, from attacks on it. You don't even have to defend yourself: just say, "hey, it's my opinion, and also music is always subjective, so I win".

    Hmmm... I agree that it may not make a big difference between the points you make here, and points made above. As I pointed out, when we discuss topics like music, we're talking about something very subjective. And, to make matters worse, people (like myself) are not very versed in the ways of music. As someone said looking at a painting, "I don't know how to paint, but I know what looks good." I could say the same about music. I know so little, but I know of a few games, like FF6, which had awesome soundtracks that stick into my head to this day. However, I would have a difficult time even writing why I like it so much.

    With that being said, I believe you can make a difference here and other places by raising awareness and helping to educate us through intelligent posts. Just watch the approach. You say above, that is "opinion about music is automatically protected, immune in a way, from attacks on it." Why attack? All that will do is make people defensive, and when people are defensive, they will not learn. Instead, share your educated viewpoint while coming along side the reviewer. "I can understand why you gave this soundtrack a high score, but have you compared it to GameX? Alexis Malarkey composed a masterpiece by blending harmonies with melodies, which you can really hear in the battle sequences. If you have, how do you feel that soundtrack compares to that?" Leading questions like this forces the reviewer to think about these things more, and raises his/her awareness in the process in a way that encourages learning.
    Co-Host on RPGBacktrack. Follow me on Twitter and sub to my blog if you would like!
  • WheelsWheels RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited May 2014
    Yes, music often gets little in the way explanation in reviews, and not just on this site. Many people, myself included, find it difficult to explain and critique music as one would a game's visuals or gameplay systems. It's a shame, but I do not fault people for being unable to. Speaking for myself, I do try to go as write a fair amount on music when I review games. I tend to go into details on the composers or specific tracks that I especially enjoyed and thought were well-done. It is, admittedly, not all that in-depth, though (and I also haven't written one for a long while now. I probably should, lest I get rusty).

    Honestly, I don't think music should get much space UNLESS it dramatically enhances gameplay experience (or hinders it). These are games after-all and it seems best focus the most attention on gameplay.

    That said music is difficult describe outside of a lot of general terms that don't necessarily drive home what it's like. I can use terms like "haunting" or "the deranged product of a composer who can't let go of 90s rock" till the cows come home without truly driving home what a game's music is like. Perhaps we should consider including samples when applicable? For example nothing would drive home the quality of a rocking Ys soundtrack better than a few samples to go along with the description.
    Ask Wheels- This Week's Episode
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