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Feb 10 2006
By: thebaldduelist~ Treasure Hunter 6975 posts
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Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

11 replies 29 views Edited Feb 10, 2006
Well this is one RPG that I can honestly say that I am SOOOO glad that I finished up. At first, it was frustrating and I wanted to dislike it and I didn't think I could. Further time spent with the game changed that and then I couldn't make myself like it anymore. Anyway I come away from this game very confused, 100+ hours later. (the game's stupid timer stops at 99:59:59 so I have no idea how long I actually played)  It seems clear to me the developers focused on graphics on this one first and foremost, then on the story and lastly gameplay. For my money, that is definitely the wrong order to go in.
 
 
 
                                                        Storyline
Story: The story is actually quite good. It held my interest throughout, which is the only saving grace the game had for me. It has nice plot twists, which I did piece together but never completely. Every plot twist has it's own twists that keep things fresh. The ending is kinda lacking though IMO, it was alright but nothing special. All in all, the people that made this game know how to tell a good story. However the problem I have, is that if the devs could put so much effort into the story, why not the gameplay? I'm all for a good story, but not at the expense of the gameplay. And an interesting story does not make a boring, tedious game better.
 
Characters: I've got mixed feelings on this matter. Most of the characters in this game were uninteresting to me. There were too many playable characters for my tastes and it bogged down the game IMO. I absolutely could not stand Calintz, the supposedly male lead. Wasn't too keen on boofy Reith either, the female lead. The amnesia story was the main reason for that, however I do like the way it was used in this game for once.
 
                                                           Gameplay
Controls: Everything seemed one step too complicated in this game. It's not that the game had bad controls, but annoying.
 
Core Gameplay: Ok here comes the biggest gripe I had with this game, terribly tedious gameplay. It totally shoots down any enjoyment I could have had playing this game. Right off the bat, is lack of exploration. The game employs FFX's dog on a leash syndrome, no backtracking until late in the game or when the game wants you to. It takes it a step further by showing you places you could go, but then having someone say "we don't need/want to go that way". I am the boss, not you creeps. lol Plus the game forces you to retread the same areas over and over again, with very little enemy variety and no no treasures or anything of note on retreads. You can't even go inside buildings in town and NPCs offer nothing of value. giving you no reason to talk to them.
 
Walking around in fields has a nice twist that should have been fun, but it wasn't. There are three modes you can use: detect, dash and rest. Detect is the most prevelant mode, you walk slowly and can not be surprised by enemies. You can also gain a first strike this way. It widens your field of vision, so you can more easily see chests and enemies. But the slow walking gets old fast. Dash lets you run but at major costs. You can't see anywhere near as far and you can be ambushed, not a good thing. Rest allows you to kneel down and recover all your HP slowly. Very useful as you never have to worry about heal in this game, but you have to be careful not to be ambushed.
 
In towns you can visit shops, blacksmiths and fortune tellers. Most of them just sell you stuff. But blacksmiths can upgrade weapons and armor if you have the materials and give you quests. But don't get excited, these quests are nothing to do. If you have the items, you get the weapon or armor reward. Useable items in this game consist of elemental talismans, which have all kinds of uses from healing, attack raising, etc. You can buy some, find some and have the fortune teller combine them to make new ones as well. But it isn't fun and involves alot of guesswork and resetting. Fortune tellers can also do readings on you to increase or decrease your luck, basically if you get good luck it means extra EXP for the character blessed and if you get bad luck, you have to pay the teller to undo it. Talk about a racket.
 
The Chi system is everything in this game and since it is so flawed, it presents a big problem. Eight kinds of chi exist: celestial, wind, water, fire, earth, mountain, lightning and ice. They play into everything including your attacks, cover that later. The top of the screen puts 8 icons to represent the Chi in each area (because it is different from place to place), and those icons can be hard to gauge. Plus some of the letters get confusing because W represents water and A represents wind, instead of using an A. So until you get used to it, knowing which chi is which is tricky. Plus as you fight, Chi in the area decreases and it is hard to see the icons level. They are a circle which empties out, but you can't always judge esp. in the beginning. You can influence the chi level in an area by using talismans on lanterns in areas, increasing chi that would favor you or decreasing chi that would favor your foes.
 
Other gameplay sins of note: HORRENDOUS load times and party swapping. There is far too much party swapping, you go back and forth between the male and female leads (and others later) and retread each other's areas far too often. Enemies appear on screen but most areas have either too few or too many foes. They do not respawn, so you can't raise levels. (when certain story elements occur, then the enemies respawn but not regularly) Money (called Sid) is very hard to come by here for the majority of the game and makes buying things a struggle. I was forced to play this game against my nature. I couldn't raise, i couldn't explore and I couldn't buy everything when I wanted to. There is also no solid skill/spell/ability system in this game. You get scrolls which contain styles and new moves are learned AT RANDOM. (more in the battle system section)
 
Battle system: The true horror show of the game lies here. Very tedious and very slow paced battles make for very little fun in a game for me. And this game features both. The battle system is supposed to be real time, but 2/3 characters do nothing at any given time. You can switch characters at will, but there is no A.I. Your two uncontrolled characters will do nothing, not even attempt to defend themselves by running. Your options are to attack using styles, use talismans and run, that is it. The eight types of Chi heavily influence battles. Every attack of every character is assigned to a certain Chi and when used drains a little more of the area's chi. Your attacks get weaker and weaker as the chi drains. Plus if there is no chi left you won't be able to attack, leaving you to use an item to replenish an element or wait til it refills. (if a lantern of that element is present) All things that drag the battles on even longer. Fighting incorporates using moves on styles, once a move is ready a trinity circle will start spinning. Each move is bound to a type of chi and each Chi forces you to use a different combo of the X and O buttons, with three presses in all. Could be fun like Shadow Heart's Judgement Ring, but it isn't because the battle system isn't turn based.
 
As you use moves, you can get a any number of 3 goods or greats depending on your timing of the circle. Not only does it effect damage done with the move, but it also effects learning new moves. If you get three greats on a move, you might learn the next move in a set. I say might but since it is freakin random, a character could learn all moves on a style in one battle or it could take several. Each character can equip up to 3 styles in battle with their own move sets. Some moves are stronger than others, but you must go in order of using the moves. You can go backward and use an older move, but never forward past a newer one. It makes you angry when you know you have a move that will defeat a foe and have to wait to use it. Then there is a trinity drive, which charges up by 5% for every 3 greats you get. When it hits 30% up to a max of 100%, you can press square to get a damage boost.
 
Then there are shields, not the kind you normally think of mind you. A character's defense is meaningless in this game on it's own. Every character gets a certain number of shields. Every hit from an enemy will give straight damage to a character and your defense will be taken into account only if you have a shield. Most characters only get 1 or 2 and since most attacks hit multiple times, they get creamed. Enemies get shields too, some of them, and later on if you don't use attacks that hit more times than the enemy has shields, you won;t do damage. Some styles have combo mode but I can't tell you about it, because it was too hard for me to use. The circle would spin too fast for me. There is also counter mode, where you can guess the element your enemy will use and try to press the right buttons. It is very hard to learn and do, and at the end of the game, you are forced to do it several times.
 
                                                       The Rest of It
Other Stuff: Oh man, other stuff? For this game, who wants to hear more after all this? lol If you are looking for mini games or side quests or bonus content, don't look here. This game don't have none. lol That is actually a good thing for me.
 
Overall: Overall, I couldn't decide if I wanted to destroy this game or not. It was so frustrating and I really hated it for making me not want to play it. When a game does all it can to suck the fun from the player, that game is not getting good marks from me. Like I said, the story is great so my final score will reflect that. But other than that, IMO Magna Carta is an RPG that seems to have been designed to push graphics and cutscenes, and not fun. This one gets a (D+) from me.
 
I am now on to Wild Arms 4, I game I hope will be so enjoyable, that I forget all about MC's terrible gameplay.
 

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Treasure Hunter
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 10, 2006
Magna Crappa You Mean...LOL...JKing. I really don't think I'll like it at all, and the story seems the weakest part of the game. I really doubt it's a game for me.
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Fender Bender
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 10, 2006


banedraven wrote:
Magna Crappa You Mean...LOL...JKing. I really don't think I'll like it at all, and the story seems the weakest part of the game. I really doubt it's a game for me.



Crappa? That was a really bad joke. Anyway...I like the story and gameplay. But the battle system is too slow. It should move much faster.
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Treasure Hunter
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 10, 2006


Kos-Mos Is MY-Girl wrote:


banedraven wrote:
Magna Crappa You Mean...LOL...JKing. I really don't think I'll like it at all, and the story seems the weakest part of the game. I really doubt it's a game for me.



Crappa? That was a really bad joke. Anyway...I like the story and gameplay. But the battle system is too slow. It should move much faster.

Damn, I wasn't trying to make a quality joke, I was just kidding around. People are getting a little too serious about stuff these days. Lighten Up folks.

Kos-Mos Is My-Girl Damn-It...She's Mine...All Mine!!!
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Fender Bender
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 10, 2006


banedraven wrote:


Kos-Mos Is MY-Girl wrote:


banedraven wrote:
Magna Crappa You Mean...LOL...JKing. I really don't think I'll like it at all, and the story seems the weakest part of the game. I really doubt it's a game for me.



Crappa? That was a really bad joke. Anyway...I like the story and gameplay. But the battle system is too slow. It should move much faster.

Damn, I wasn't trying to make a quality joke, I was just kidding around. People are getting a little too serious about stuff these days. Lighten Up folks.

Kos-Mos Is My-Girl Damn-It...She's Mine...All Mine!!!



That was a better joke! lol!
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Treasure Hunter
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 10, 2006


Kos-Mos Is MY-Girl wrote:


banedraven wrote:


Kos-Mos Is MY-Girl wrote:


banedraven wrote:
Magna Crappa You Mean...LOL...JKing. I really don't think I'll like it at all, and the story seems the weakest part of the game. I really doubt it's a game for me.



Crappa? That was a really bad joke. Anyway...I like the story and gameplay. But the battle system is too slow. It should move much faster.

Damn, I wasn't trying to make a quality joke, I was just kidding around. People are getting a little too serious about stuff these days. Lighten Up folks.

Kos-Mos Is My-Girl Damn-It...She's Mine...All Mine!!!



That was a better joke! lol!

No...I'm into Androids...Especially Kos-Mos...She's Hot. T-Eleos sure does look fine too...
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Last Guardian
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 10, 2006

D+, eh, sounds more like my Math grade. :smileytongue: Anyway, your review is very lengthy and definitely proves why you gave it a D+. Now, MC is something I have to try out just to see if I agree with you. I am not disappointed on the fact that there are no bonus' in the  game because sometime that can be a good thing and sometimes it isn't. At least, they didn't ruin the game any more than it is with the minigames, eh? The story sounds cool to watch but nonetheless, I have seen gameplay vids of it and watched a friend play it, and I am probably just going to skip this game and hope somebody tells me the story.

When I watched a video of it, it looked very annoying and frustrating to play. That doesn't get my money if it looks that way. You stated that there was no fun in playing this and what is the point of playing a RPG when there is no fun involved? I am going through Final Fantasy X and I am having the best time of my life with the great gameplay, excellent story, and the damn NPC's give you stuff 90% of the time. That is the kind of RPG I want to play. The way MC sounds like, I know I am not going to like it.

I appreciate you putting effort in to finish the game to write a review for us. I know it must have been brutal and frustrating so congratulations on finishing it! If I play it in the future, I will post about my impressions and say if I want to go through the story or not but this review kind of has me leaning toward another RPG.

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Hekseville Citizen
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 11, 2006

100 Plus Hours.....

Oh No...I took a break from this game because it was not holding my interest enough. I'm now playing DQVIII and i was planning to go back to MC after because i really loved the stroy. I'm not so sure anymore though, i dont want to suffer 70 more hours of the gameplay just to finish the story.

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Treasure Hunter
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 11, 2006
Why don't you write a review and have it posted on the review board?
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Treasure Hunter
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Re: Magna Carta Tears of Blood Final Thoughts

Feb 11, 2006


Light_Jak wrote:

D+, eh, sounds more like my Math grade. :smileytongue: Anyway, your review is very lengthy and definitely proves why you gave it a D+. Now, MC is something I have to try out just to see if I agree with you. I am not disappointed on the fact that there are no bonus' in the  game because sometime that can be a good thing and sometimes it isn't. At least, they didn't ruin the game any more than it is with the minigames, eh? The story sounds cool to watch but nonetheless, I have seen gameplay vids of it and watched a friend play it, and I am probably just going to skip this game and hope somebody tells me the story.

When I watched a video of it, it looked very annoying and frustrating to play. That doesn't get my money if it looks that way. You stated that there was no fun in playing this and what is the point of playing a RPG when there is no fun involved? I am going through Final Fantasy X and I am having the best time of my life with the great gameplay, excellent story, and the damn NPC's give you stuff 90% of the time. That is the kind of RPG I want to play. The way MC sounds like, I know I am not going to like it.

I appreciate you putting effort in to finish the game to write a review for us. I know it must have been brutal and frustrating so congratulations on finishing it! If I play it in the future, I will post about my impressions and say if I want to go through the story or not but this review kind of has me leaning toward another RPG.



If you ever want story info, feel free to ask. I would be more than happy to share before the details start to get hazy. lol

It was very frustrating but these things kept me going: I really wanted to see the way the story played out, this game cost alot and I was not gonna shelve it and have my money go to waste and when people ask about it I want to be able to give a detailed opinion on it. I couldn't do that without suffering through the whole thing. Now if anyone posts about it, I can just copy or link this as as time passes my memory of the finer details goes with it. But thanks for reading it anyway, to you and everyone that did.

&QU - 100+ hours was my playtime but I don't think it is standard. I know someone that completed it in a bit over 60 hours. I just kept doing more even though I didn't want to, completing all the dojos, trying to gather quest items and trying to level everyone evenly. (which I am SOOOO glad I did btw, then end of this game is rough)


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