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November 8, 2005

e-mail to: Evan Morris

xenosaga is garbage
i just have to get this off my chest...
i was excited about xenosaga because is was the highly promoted sequel to xenogears on the playstation. xenogears was very highly regarded among the rpg'er elite on the internet, even though i didn't really get into it because i thought it was clunky and the translation was abysmal. anyway, i was looking forward to saga because everyone was getting all worked up over it and i happen to like science fiction themes that delve into religion.
anyway, i eventually bought a ps2 earlier this year...and one of the reasons that i bought it was to play xenosaga because i'd heard good things about it over the past two years. to my dismay, saga is probably the single worst and most unimaginative rpg i've ever owned. in fact, i traded it in for $4 because i couldn't stand to have defiling my collection any longer.
xenosaga kind of reminds me of legend of dragoon in that it is a blatant rip off of rpg ideas that really don't cohere well. it's kinda like namco had a checklist of what they thought made a successful rpg and just filled in the blanks...what they ended up with was completely incoherent nonsense that seemed to meld everything that was bad about rpgs into one trite package. and, on top of that, it's less of a game, and more like a movie, than even sons of liberty...that's hard to accoplish, my friends. to make matters worse, the anime cutscenes are about as entertaining as the great space coaster. and, even then, that's being generous because the "cartoons" are more deathly boring than I {heart} HUCKABEES. the story is far beyond trite.
robot that is becoming more "human," check.
drawn out turn based battle system with long special attack animations, check.
a treatise on what it means to be human from a mix of sci-fi and religious commentary, check.
you know what? rent it and find out exactly what's wrong with videogames these days.
great games are not made by focus groups and concensus and supermarket checklists.
if you like traditional rpgs, do yourself a favor and pick up either chrono cross, final fantasy 8, or panzer dragoon saga. if you want a glimpse into the future of rpgs, then you have to play morrowind.

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