There are some parts of Star Ocean 2 where Claude and Rena have different scenarios and the bandit kidnapping is one of them.

It's enjoyable to see Celine and Claude get some time together. I still find it hard to mentally pair Claude with anyone else since he's clearly so upset about being separated from Rena and frustrated that she chose to go with Dias in this scenario.

I have to say that I do enjoy the fantasy elements more than the science fiction.

I don’t know if I want to post things other than what games I’m working on but this sandwich was a delight. Feeling tasty, may delete later

Not much gaming the last couple of days but picked up Diablo II Resurrected for half off.

The PC version is massively better than the console version- probably pretty obvious, but yeah definitely enjoyed turning the lights off and playing some of this.

I wish Diablo IV was out but this will do for now. Soon, more Star Ocean I hope.

Today in Star Ocean Second Evolution we spoke to the king of Krosse and recruited Celine, then did a bunch of Private Actions.

I've always felt that Claude and Rena are the canon pair and don't have any plans to mess with that, however I am trying to see as many scenes as I can with the other characters, too.

There's a lot to this game and you really need to play it multiple times if you want to get a taste of everything.

This really takes me back to the good old days of 1999.

How Stories Die- Free VN that I'm unsure about. The writing feels a bit off like it was translated in a hurry or written by a non native speaker with no editor- but on the other hand, free- and there are a few really funny lines so far.

I've heard it's surprisingly deep as it goes on?

I really like how Star Ocean 2 utilized its pre-rendered backgrounds, and the careful choice of angles in the various scenes.

I started playing a bit of Star Ocean Second Evolution on PSP. While the gameplay itself seems fine and has a nice widescreen presentation with new voice acting (Japanese preferred) and anime scenes, the new art is really weak.

This is not the Rena that I knew and imagined, or that was reflected in the official art of the PlayStation version.

Other characters are affected by this to a lesser extent. Undecided if I will keep playing it.

The trip to Meribia is completely different in the original.

Luna departs and unlike every other release, Alex doesn't talk her into joining. I understand why this change was made- we hardly get to know Luna before she disappears yet she's the main focus of the entire plot.

Instead of a large ship to explore, a boss to fight, along with a musical number, it's a simple boat that takes your group to Meribia.

Not only is there a completely new task and dungeon before sailing to Meribia that was omitted from future releases, we also get some early foreshadowing about what Ghaleon has been working on.

Nall actually had a purpose, once. He would tell you the names of the enemies and give you an idea of how strong they are relative to your current level.

So many things get changed in the various versions of Lunar for no reason.

In Silver Star on Sega CD you have to go to the Weird Woods to get an axe to repair a bridge so you can get to Saith.

In Harmony and probably in Complete (I don't remember) you have to pass through the woods in general to get to Saith and then there's a weird fog which Luna dispels through her singing.

This does give an opportunity for foreshadowing about Luna but that's hardly necessary in those versions.

And now we begin (possibly) Lunar: The Silver Star for Sega CD.

Had to jump from the newest rendition back to the original.

Not my first time playing the original Lunar but it's been ages and I never did finish this one.

Things I like: the cutscene art is really cool. Music sounds great. Less chatter. Battles move so fast compared to the sluggish PSP version. Old school RPG feel- less forgiving, a little more grindy perhaps.

Lunar ending spoilers 

Lunar: Silver Star Harmony is complete.

I was surprisingly moved by the finale and epilogue.

It's been a long time since I played Lunar 2 but it felt like the Harmony version's ending had a lot of references and foreshadowing to it.

At one point I thought this may the definitive version of Lunar, now I'm not quite so confident- it definitely has some big advantages but makes some sloppy mistakes in other areas, too.

I'm glad I took the time to play it, though.

Silver Star Harmony Final Boss 

Ghaleon is down- this would normally be a fairly straightforward boss fight, but the turn order bug/RNG I mentioned previously completely ruins this fight.

Ghaleon has an attack that can wipe out your whole party on the next turn, and he telegraphs it fine- but there's no way to know how the turn order is going to shake out, so it become dumb luck.

They also added some really annoying abilities, like Ghaleon can get full immunity for 3 turns, multiple times!

Lunar major spoilers 

Today we get all the big reveals- confirmation that Luna is Althena- though the game never hides it very well at all. Confirmation that Nall is a White Dragon- same, really. Confirmation that Laike is Dyne- uh, same. This game isn't very good at keeping secrets.

But the character moments during these revelations are highly enjoyable.

In the final dungeon, we confront Royce, who I like but I'm not sure if she was even in the original game.

Something is very wrong with speed and turn order in Silver Star Harmony. I don’t know if it’s a bug but it certainly feels like one- every single battle, with no change to equipment, formations or levels, the party and enemies turn order feels like complete RNG. And it’s infuriating. You can make strategies but there’s no consistency to how things will play out and it usually never goes the way you intend.

Lunar spoilers 

On the frontier we discover that the Vile Tribe are much like anyone else, and they are only following Ghaleon's will to have a chance for revenge on Althena for their race's ancient exile and to have a chance to live on the green parts of Lunar again or on the Blue Star.

I believe this interpretation differs a lot from the Sega CD version where instead of the Vile Tribe being enslaved by Ghaleon, it is the humans of Burg instead.

Lunar spoilers 

Time for what I call the Dragonmaster world tour.

Almost all the NPC dialogue updates after certain key events, which can be a little tiring if you want to avoid missing out on anything.

But this part is particularly enjoyable as it's something you've been working on for the entire game up to this point, and it's fun to see your friends and allies excited about the news.

Off to the frontier, it really reminds you where Lunar is set.

Lunar Silver Star Harmony spoilers 

In the last session, we become the Dragonmaster at last. It's one of the most satisfying moments of the game although I wish the entire party was there to witness it. I believe this plays out differently on the Sega CD version.

Myght's Tower was not a fun dungeon and it's an odd one with just Alex and Dyne. Black Dragon cave is okay, removes your main healer and one attack mage so it changes the flow a lot.

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