Seiken Densetsu 3 is an action RPG released by Square for the Super Nintendo in 1995 and is set to be released part of collection with the other games in the series on the Nintendo Switch later this year.
It's a great little game that gets high praise for how easy it is to get into and how entertaining it remains for its entire stay. This is compounded by its character diversity and branching storylines, keeping people, such as my teenaged self, hooked for longer than I care to admit.
With all of that being said, SD3 is a unique game for other reasons. See the base game is bugged to absolute hell, to the point that it's surprising the thing runs at all. This noticeably affects the balance of basically everything in the game and sets up a number of traps for unsuspecting players.
As a teenager I always wondered what the game would look like if Square had had the time to resolve all of these issues and thanks to modding don't have to wait any longer!
Released in October 2014 by modder Praetorius5018, Seiken Densetsu 3 - Hardtype is a full bugfix and rebalance for the entire game. Items have been overhauled, classes have been changed and frankly I have no idea of what to expect.
As it's never been done before I'm doing a video LP. Along with me for the ride is veteran LPer and all around good person Coolguy who will be ensuring I don't miss anything relevant and more importantly don't mess up my first LP. Most importantly, as soon as we get a second character he'll be joining me for co-op action. Hopefully with two experienced players, we might not get completely owned. We're expecting to update three times a week on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday.
We'll be going through on the "Normal" difficulty of the mod which professes to be slightly harder than the base game, semi-blind, in that we both know the base game inside out. If it ends up being too ridiculous we'll transition down to Easy mode and if even that's too hard we'll transition down to the bug-fixed version of the base game.
Spoiler policy is that you can mention things inside spoiler tags, but try to keep it at a minimum, the game has a neat story that I wouldn't like to see new people spoiled on.
Most importantly, there will be voting.
SD3 is interesting as there are six characters, of which we can pick 3. The first character picked is the de-facto protagonist of the story and will affect not only the story that we see but the final boss that we face. Additionally each character can class change into a total of four unique classes by the end of the game. We will be voting on all of this. Our first, introduction video, gives full details on each character's strengths, weaknesses and the flavour of their final classes but below is a quick summary.
Duran is a fighter from the land of Forcena, he's a physical damage character who hits slow but hard and can either become a healing tank or a balls to the wall damage dealer. He shares a story path and final boss with Angela.
Angela is a magician from the land of Altena. Unsurprisingly she's the magical attacker of the party who focuses on a wide variety of spells for every occasion. She shares a story path and final boss with Duran.
Kevin is a beastman from the Beast Kingdom. He's another physical attacker who turns into a werewolf at night to deliver even harder beatings with his fists. He shares a story path and final boss with Carlie.
Carlie is a half elf from the City of Wendel. She's the resident healer of the game, gaining access to an array of healing spells and light magic. She talks"wike this" and cries at basically everything so if you want to annoy yourselves and us to death pick her. She shares a story path and final boss with Kevin.
Hawk is a thief from the Sand Fortress of Navarre. He's a jack of all trades, with strong physical damage as well as some of the most varied spells in the game. He shares a story path and final boss with Lise.
Lise (whose artwork has an annoying white background)
Lise is an amazoness from the Wind Kingdom of Rolante. Lise is the undisputed queen of status effects boasting buffs, debuffs alongside respectable physical damage. She shares a story path and final boss with Hawk.
The first class change!
Your Finalised Choices
Valkyrie is a well rounded class that focuses on buff spells for the party. Lise can increase a single target's stats in either agility, strength, intelligence or defense. Additionally she gets a full screen tech attack (This is sometimes abbreviated to FST and means that his tech hits all enemies) which is always handy. It also gives the option for a healing class later in the game.
Valkyrie will play particularly well with Hawk's dark classes as Lise provides Debuffs and Hawk provides buffs.
The ranger class is a bit of an odd duck. Hawk gets a pair of direct damage spells and a pair of crowd control abilities. It has access to a Fullscreen tech, but broadly you take ranger with the intent of going for the later classes, which are basically a full on magician and one of the single weirdest classes in the game.
Ranger will play well with Lise's dark side and half of Angela's light side
Delvar grants Angela single target level 2 spells in her basic elements and allows her to multitarget her level 1 spells. Her later class changes will grant access to a number of weird status conditions as well as buff spells. She runs higher intelligence than the sorceress, meaning she hits harder, but she runs lower stats everywhere else.
The Delvar will play well with almost any combination of the other two characters.
The second class change!
Your finalised choices
Vanadis is a strong buffing class that offers other utility in the mod not found in the base game. Lise's signature summon as a Vanadis is Freya which deals full screen damage and turns all enemies into chibikkos. I would imagine in the mod this is much more powerful. Additionally she is the only class we have access to that can use a max level Full Screen Tech (FST) damaging all enemies on the field.
Vanadis gets a /lot/ of extra perks in this mod. The first is that now it can buff all allies with its spells, the same as Star Lancer. The second is that it gets access to both Heal Light and Tinkle Rain, allowing us to heal and cure debuffs as a team. In the mod, healing has an additional effect of providing a full heal at the end of the fight to all party members.
Vanadis is a very strong choice and provides us with our only access to healing. It will be strong in particular with Wanderer Hawk as Hawk's Aura wave will allow Lise to charge up her FST much more quickly.
Wanderer is a bizarre class, which whilst physically weak carries the widest array of odd buff, debuff and utility spells in the game. This allows the class to up max HP for characters, reduce boss max HP (which is huge), remove magic resistance and poison enemies. Additionally it allows Hawk to multitarget his Sleep Flower and Body Change spells for more enemy control.
The big change for wanderer coming from the patch is access to Mind Up, which will take at least some buff pressure off Lise.
Wanderer will play particularly well with Vanadis due to its Aura Wave access. It also has a snazzy hat in the portrait, which is irrelevant to gameplay, but is a snazzy hat.
For some reason the SoM wiki has some additional flavour for Hawk's final classes, so I thought I'd link it:
Adventuring the roads not often traveled, the Wanderer is the very class that treads this way of life. Having distanced themselves from the heart of society and heeded a call to nature, the Wanderer lives life within the wilderness, learning of the natural world's mysteries and uncovering discoveries that only lie within the depths of its realm. Though they travel in the serenity of the natural world and with an awareness brought about through their solitude, they are also not without knowledge of its dangers, knowing how to survive against such troubles and fight back. Along with expertise in ways of battle, the Wanderer has also attained the mystical powers of nature on their travels through learning to commune with the spirits of the natural world, allowing them magic that can aid or hinder in times of strife.
The Rune Master class is the only class to give access to level 3 spells. These powerful abilities allow Angela to hit for high magic damage and affect enemies with weird status ailments. In this way Angela can silence, petrify enemies or even turn them into snowmen.
The major changes in the mod are that Rune Master no longer gets access to multitarget dark force. However, instead she may multitarget any of the level 2 spells we learn as Delvar (Explode, Earthquake, Thunderstorm and Megasplash). Additionally she gets access to elemental sabres of the same element, allowing Angela to boost the damage of her spells and her allies' attacks.
Rune Master will play very well with Rogue, but will also work well with Vanadis, buffing the damage on Lise's FST.
Voting is Closed.
Our team for the main playthrough is:
Lise as party leader
Our second party is
Duran as party leader
Chapter 1 - Lise and the Faerie
Episode 00 - Prologue- Wherein we explain the characters, the game and the mod.
Episode 01: I'm going to have to learn how to fade in - Wherein we do Lise's opening and find out just how different this mod is.
Episode 02: You just sold the long spear - Wherein we venture through the deadly Rabite forest and I make a number of stupid mistakes.
Episode 03: Boing! - Wherein Nat20 is joined by Coolguy and together they smash through the cave of waterfalls.
Chapter 2 - The Bridge Across the Cleft
Episode 04: Move Lise Get Out The Way - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy battle through the Cave of Waterfalls and face the deadly Full Metal Hugger.
Episode 05: Angela, Sick Him! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy find their final party member and then take the first (of many) trip down the Golden Road.
Episode 06: It's Done the Thing! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy fight the fierce machine golems and then proceed to take another four trips down the Golden road.
Chapter 3 - Gnome and the Jewel Eater
Episode 07: Oh I'm Sure We'll Live - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy find out just how prepared they are for this game.
Episode 08: He's Doing a Dance! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy learn from their mistakes
Episode 09: We are really good at this game - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy talk about class changes.
Chapter 4 - Tzenker and the First Class Change
Episode 10: Hips do not move that way! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy go to Rolante and get stoned.
Episode 11: Nonononono! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy meet Don Perignon and then have horrible flashbacks.
Episode 12: Why is a pakkun chocholate a stray cat? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy perform the first class change and then prove how useless it is against Tzenker.
Episode 13: Angela's Out - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy take another shot at Tzenker.
Chapter 5 - The Assault on Rolante
Episode 14: I've got no idea what's going on anymore - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy enter the world of technical difficulties.
Episode 15: Angela kill everything would you kindly - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy actually fight Genova for real.
Episode 16: Shadow Dive - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy get hit by Shadow Dive. A lot.
Chapter 6 - The Ship and the Island
Episode 17: PS Have More Knives in Your Face - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy discover a really really good weapon.
Episode 18: Oh God What - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy find the limits of a boss.
Episode 19: Stop Evolving You're Not a Pokemon - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy face a swarm of annoying lizards.
Chapter 7 - The Sub Zero Snowfield
Episode 20: Lise and the Turtle Bandits - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy come to understand the term, "Level disadvantage."
Episode 21: EVERY SINGLE TIME - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy take a wrong turn.
Episode 22: They killed her in a cutscene - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy fight more machine golems and talk about more class changes.
Chapter 8 - The Desert and the Final Class Change
Episode 23: He's Just Pleased to Be Here - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy get a break.
Episode 24: Holy Crap Did I Just Ruin Everything - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy get shadow dived.. a lot.
Episode 25: Fighting Evil By Moonlight - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy make a second class change.
Chapter 9 - The Moonlight and Lampflower Forests
Episode 26: Float Like a Butterfly Sting Like a Bee - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy realise that Nat20 is blind.
Episode 27: SUPLEX! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy gain an understanding of pro wrestling.
Episode 28: Oh no, it's Carlie - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy meet a familiar gremlin.
Episode 29: Here Angela, Use this! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy fight a Resident Evil Plant
Chapter 10 - The Sword of Mana
Episode 30: IT'S HEAL LIGHT - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy get the best spell ever.
Episode 31: Rabites are Weird - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy find the Sword of Mana
Episode 32: Ninjas Everywhere - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy go to Navarre for ninja funtime.
Chapter 11 - Dolan, Godbeast of Moon
Episode 33: That's a Clever Trick - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy get a wakeup call.
Episode 34: That just killed us - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy get a bigger wakeup call.
Episode 35: Technical Difficulties - Wherein Dolan stops playing fair.
Episode 36: Oh, there's the reset - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy record a monster.
Chapter 12 - Fiegmund, Godbeast of Ice
Episode 37: The best florist in the desert - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy enjoy freezing.
Episode 38: Well we're going to die - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy once again walk into a boss room unprepared.
Episode 39: Maybe this is a pokemon thing - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy realise an important fact.
Chapter 13 - Lightgazer, Godbeast of Light
Episode 40: When did you become a lawyer? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy are introduced to the magic circle.
Episode 41: They literally can touch this - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy blatantly abuse the AI.
Episode 42: The Scientific Method. - Wherin Nat20 and Coolguy become scientists.
Chapter 14 - Mispolm, Godbeast of Woods
Episode 43: Who the hell does she think she is? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy meet their evil opposites.
Episode 44: Let's see if you kill yourself with this. - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy kill themselves.
Episode 45: Gildervine - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy win via dumb luck.
Chapter 15 - Land Umber, Godbeast of Earth
Episode 46: Oh God there's another one - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy have to take their time.
Episode 47: Holy Crap this Dungeon Goes on Forever - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy check their watches.
Episode 48: Well That Just Happened - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy find a new and unique bug.
Episode 49: Massively Incompetent Person - Wherein Nat20 fights Land Umber alone.
Chapter 16 - Dangaard, Godbeast of Wind
Episode 50: Literally the same as before. - Wherein Nat20 engages in a repeat show on his own.
Episode 51: This Frickin' Guy. - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy enjoy the fun of screen transitions.
Chapter 17 - Xan Bie, Godbeast of Fire
Episode 52: The good word of stone cloud - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy are reintroduced to ninjas
Episode 53: Did we even equip everything? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy are surprised by a boss. Again.
Chapter 18 - Zabl Fahr, Godbeast of Darkness
Episode 54: That Attack - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy experience something unexpected.
Episode 55: Maybe we're on time for once? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy meet a boss
Episode 56: What made that happen? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy are put in their place.
Episode 57: Samurai from FFV - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy hurl coins at their opponent.
Episode 58: We Couldn't Have Known - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy practice more science.
Episode 59: Praetarius What the Hell Was That - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy live on the razor's edge.
Chapter 19 - The Dark Castle
Episode 60: What? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy learn about a new spell.
Episode 61: We Get New Music! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy actually enter the Dark Castle.
Episode 62: This is the Next Boss Fight - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy anticipate the next boss fight.
Episode 63: I'm Going to Enjoy Eviscerating You! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy release some tension.
Episode 64: I thought it was Gorva - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy forget where they are.
Episode 65: Something Awful behind this door - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy find an adorable cat.
Chapter 20 - Return to the Holyland
Episode 66: Death Roulette - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy face unfair odds.
Episode 67: Better Stronger Harder Faster - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy try to regroup.
Episode 68: Good Job Praetarius! - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy grudgingly accept defeat.
Episode 69: Two Greater Demons - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy engage in a duel with a rabite.
Episode 70: 794!- Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy realise they are in for the long haul.
Episode 71: Dead that really happen? - Wherein Nat20 and Coolguy end the game.
Stupid gifs and pictures:
Jammin' to the Grand Slam
This Family's Got Hops
There is a bounty for Hawk as Tuxedo mask and Lise as Sailor Moon
Anyway, this color nightmare is my contribution, I don't think light teal+gold+lavender works very well here.