The Let's Play Archive

Unlimited Saga

by corn in the bible

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Original Thread: Let's embrace Chaos and play Unlimited Saga!



The Saga games have always been fairly experimental. The early Gameboy games (which you may know as the "Final Fantasy Legend" series, in English) were notable for having strange, sci-fi heavy settings and a bunch of weird mechanics involving mutation. The Romancing SaGa games, while more standard RPG in setting, added non-linear exploration for a very open-ended experience. And SaGa Frontier, which I think is probably the most well-known here in the West, combined the two, allowing you to go on an adventure in New York City with your good buddies TIME LORD and ENGINEER CAR. But we're not here to talk about those, nor about the other games in the series, though I'm sure they will come up in the thread and you're free to discuss them. This is about Unlimited Saga, the one that everybody hates. Even if they do admit the music is very nice. Like so:

Unlimited Saga is by far the most impenetrable and unkind RPG experience you will have on a console. It's a willful homage to old, old, old-school RPGs like Phantasie and to table-top gaming, both of which are interests of SaGa's main designer, Akitoshi Kawazu. It was panned for being confusing, frustrating, obscure, and also for not having the explorable environments or dungeons that people had come to expect from... well... all videogames, really. Maybe it would have done better on a handheld. However, while all of those things are essentially true, it's also gorgeous, has a very definite style, and is very cool once you get into it. The game, of course, will not help you with this, but I will!

Like a lot of Saga games, Unlimited has multiple protagonists to choose from. A lot of content is shared between them, so while you can replay it seven times I wouldn't really recommend that. But here's the seven heroes, and their descriptions. If you were to play this for yourself, I'd recommend starting with Ventus, who is easiest and can never be put in an unwinnable state no matter what. This LP will focus on Mythe and Armic, who are considered the hardest--albeit for two completely different reasons.

Unlimited Saga Heroes:

Judy is, as you can probably guess, the main magic-user of the game. More or less her entire potential party is either a magician or has good potential to be one. Magic is strange in this game, and this would be a good way to show it off, if you're into that sort of thing. Her plot involves trying to save her family from an evil wizard.

Ruby is a fortune-teller off for adventure. She doesn't really have any major gameplay gimmicks, but her quest does involve exploring all the Seven Wonders, which are the main final dungeons of the game. Note that everyone else can visit them too as sidequests, for the most part, so you'll still get to see them if you pick someone else. However, sometimes her versions are a bit different, so there's that. She gets some fun characters to work with, though. A good character for learning a bit about the setting of the adventure.

Laura is a pirate assassin schoolteacher widow, and a lot of guides will recommend that you play as her first because she gets a lot of very powerful characters and equipment as part of her story. Her plot's pretty good, though it is a bit short as with all Saga protagonists. However, there are some dick moves late in the game which will probably leave you stranded if you don't know how to build a character. The main downside is that I recently played through the game as Laura, so I don't really want to do it again right now, but I will if you guys really want to.

Kurt is a pretty nice guy, and has some very difficult encounters throughout his quest. His main gimmick is that he has a cursed gauntlet, which draws him into one-on-one battle every so often with illusory monsters; his storyline is partly about that, but is mostly about a bunch of knights? I don't know, it's weird. Anyway, if you don't know how to build a character, the gauntlet battles may present an insurmountable roadblock. If you do know what you're doing, it can be easily exploited to make Kurt very powerful, though it is still really annoying. I'll show off what I mean about that, of course, if you guys pick him.

Mythe is a blacksmith, and has a couple unique abilities related to that. He is on the hunt for a mysterious woman he saw in a photograph, and it ends up being larger than that, of course. His story is pretty neat, and I think it is the most involved of all the characters. On the other hand his quest is by far the hardest in the game even if you know what you're doing, and there's much less leeway in his storyline to do sidequests or show off that stuff. I know this from experience, since I tried playing as him my first time through and got completely demolished. Mythe has the hardest final boss in the game, and perhaps in any JRPG.

Ventus is a carrier, which is basically a fantasy mailman. This means he is the only person with a continual supply of both experience and money, and thus is very good for a first playthrough. Story is fine; he gets to fight some vampires and there's a dragon involved, stuff like that. Mostly Ventus is about the sidequests, since he can eventually get access to pretty much every city. Having lots of money would make it easy to break the game wide open, though I'll be doing that anyway.

Armic is a chapa, which is some kind of squirrel beaver thing. His storyline involves saving his tribe through collecting a bunch of rare items, which will require a lot of weird economic exploits and stuff that I probably would never bother doing for anyone else. I'm not sure that Armic's quest is even possible if you don't know what you're doing. It's madness! Armic's party is pretty weird also, though like Ventus a lot of his story is just doing sidequests. Armic has a ridiculous voice, and is basically Big the Cat.

Table of Contents

Mythe's Adventure

Armic's Adventure

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