Sunday, July 20, 2014

Obscure Video Game Review - Bravely Default

Hey all, Counterfett here. Sorry for the big gap in posting, but I managed to score myself a three day weekend in a work contest, and it made me pretty lazy. In any event, I wanted to take a look at a game that is not especially obscure, though it does meet the criteria for this series by being more well known overseas than here in the states, though a full English version is out. I speak of course, of Bravely Default.

While at first blush, this strikes me as a retelling of Final Fantasy IV ( I think that was the one with the world crystals, right?), also by Square Enix, what really sets Bravely Default apart from the jRPG genre in general and the FF series in particular is the titular mechanic. During a round of combat, rather than simply picking an action to do on your turn and hope it works right, the player has the option of 'Default' which reduces received damage, or conversely, the Brave stance, which gives an extra action. Bravely can be stored like mana, which allows certain party member/class combos the do some incredibly abusive mutli attacks or actions. Using Default increases the Brave meter, which means defending for longer lets you charge more moves.

There's also a feature called 'Sleep Points,' which let you stop time, so to speak, in the game, but that depends on the player leaving BD in sleep mode. You get one SP for 8 hours of sleep mode. Of course, there are micro transactions which allow players to spend real world money for SP. That's why I completely ignore SP.

The story is good, while uninspired (as I mentioned, it seems so far to be lifted whole cloth from one of the FF games), and the characters are less annoying to me than the majority of Final Fantasy characters. It's a pretty cool game, and worth a look if you spend a lot of time with a portable system (it's out on 3DS and PSP I believe).

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