Sunday, March 31, 2013

I Wish I Loved Grinding

Disgea 3:  Absence of Detention was handed out last week as a Playstation Plus freebie, which I immediately picked up and by immediately, I mean "overnight for a 14 hour download".  I have a good portion of the Disgaea games, only skirting around picking up the re-releases and such (though I have some of those) so I -have- Disgaea 3 on PS3 already, and I did put a good bit of time into it there before moving on to other things.  That was a while ago, however, and my progress has since been lost, so the knowledge that there would be a handheld version of the game in the Vita port was comforting.  I do some of my best gaming on handhelds, after all, since it's far, far easier to keep at a game when you can take it anywhere you go.  That is unless the game utterly turns you off, of course.

There is nothing inherently wrong with Disgaea 3.  Well, there are a couple things wrong with it, chief being that the story is....terrible, but it is not a -bad- game.  There's not bugs in it, it's perfectly playable, it runs smooth, looks nice on the Vita and there was a clear amount of love placed into the game.  I cannot say "I don't like Disgaea 3" and be telling you the truth, because I -do- like it in premise and concept.

I just cannot enjoy playing it.

It is something that never ceases to boggle me; Disgaea as a series, as games, in story and in mechanics, is steeped in absurdity, practically slow-boiled in it and yet I can't bring myself to enjoy it as fully and wholly as I expect to and as I want to.  You can climb mountains that just don't exist in other games, and then you can climb -bigger- mountains than those ones.  You can reach Level 9999, you can deal a million damage with the swing of a sword, you can turn a Prinny into a handgun, you can go -into- a world inside of a weapon to make it stronger and you can erect a tower of people all for the effort of throwing one to throw another to throw another and so on.  You can do other things that are crazier than the mentioned.  There is not a sane bone in the body of any Disgaea game and that what makes them charming.

I would love it if I could find that enjoyment in Disgaea.  I did, once upon a time, as my save file for Disgaea 2 on PS2 will attest to, but I can't find that any longer.  Every battle just seems like it's the same one and I can't exactly figure out what the differentiation between that and a game like Final Fantasy Tactics, which I have no qualms playing almost any time, but there is some sort of difference there and it is key enough that it prevents me from making an actual effort.  My only idea is the grinding (as you may have guessed from the title) since you can grind literally everything, but I enjoy grinding in other things.  Like....Final Fantasy Tactics.  I would routinely play by the "X2 Rule" whenever I played FFT which was, simply, the "Suggested Level" in the strategy guide that was given to me with the game as a gift...times two.  Suggested level was five, I was level ten, ten, I was twenty, etc.  I love accelerating FFT characters.

There's just some sort of strange disconnect when it comes to the characters you get in Disgaea, though.  Perhaps it's because they're a bit more malleable than most games, but that should be inspiring more than it's not.  I don't suspect that I'll find the reason why and be able to exile it and find that Disgaea 3 'clicks' with me, though I would certainly like that.  I want to enjoy Disgaea 3 as much as I know that I can, and that I cannot it something that is of particular annoyance with me.  Still, I suspected as much and it's only because it was free that I'm playing it - I'm not actually regretting it or anything of that sort - I just want to be able to like good games.  And I feel that, beneath whatever it is that I just don't like about the series, they -are- good games.

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