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Star Ocean: The Last Hope Review

My latest review is for Star Ocean: The Last Hope - International (no, I don't really know how I should punctuate multiple levels of subtitles, damn them). I guess it was about time for something I don't like. And as much as I love roleplaying I've yet to find a JRPG I can really appreciate.

Also, I know I probably shouldn't call these "reviews" exactly, but it's more convenient than trying to explain what they actually are. This particular example is more typically review-like than usual for me, but still doesn't cover all the usual checkpoints.

Anyway, Star Ocean... I wrote this in the middle of my phase of experimenting with cliches. It's actually a bit of a private joke. I wrote about an overly-troped game and slid in a couple of borrowed phrases like "pales in comparison" and "silver lining". It will be completely lost on everyone else, but I enjoy keeping myself amused.

I'm a bit weird, in that even when I don't like something I sometimes think it's worth experiencing anyway. This gets me into trouble. I tell someone I don't like a certain genre of movie and then get confused when they don't invite me to the cinema.

For all my complaining about this game, I sunk about 40 hours into it. The only reason I didn't finish it was that the copy I was sent is scratched, and I started getting frequent disc errors. With a huge time between save points it doesn't take many errors to make it unplayable.

I wasn't sure whether to be relieved or annoyed at those disc errors. I have big problems with the game, so it's kind of nice to have an excuse to leave it. At the same time, I had a morbid curiosity to see how much more disturbing it gets. Not curious enough to actually spend money on disc repair, but still.

There is a lot I didn't go into about the character interactions, and I keep wondering how far they are going to push things. There is even a slight hint of paedophilia, extending to an accidental kiss. I don't mention it partly because it makes me look like I can't recognise a non-sexual relationship when I see one. But even as a friendship it's pretty darn creepy, honestly.

Apparently in the manual they claim she's fifteen to reduce any potential issues. Yep, I believe them:


Lymle. A young child wearing a pink dress and holding a mage staff.

I don't care if she's part of a short, alien race. She looks and acts about five years old at the most. Also, I wish I didn't just go image hunting... lots of disturbing fan art I now cannot un-see.