Give Me Romancing SaGa Minstrel Song with a Dash of Dark Cloud 2

Oh god I'm salivating.

Skinny Banter #1: Your Ultimate Game

If you could take your favorite game elements of all time and combine them into the ultimate digital experience – the one game to rule them all – what would it be? How would it work? Describe your digital nirvana, build your ultimate game from the still twitching parts salvaged from other titles. – See more at: http://www.gameskinny.com/hy3mq/ultimate-game-mashup-skinny-banter-1#sthash.4NnKwIWm.dpuf

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Skinny Banter #1: Your Ultimate Game

If you could take your favorite game elements of all time and combine them into the ultimate digital experience – the one game to rule them all – what would it be? How would it work? Describe your digital nirvana, build your ultimate game from the still twitching parts salvaged from other titles. – See more at: http://www.gameskinny.com/hy3mq/ultimate-game-mashup-skinny-banter-1#sthash.4NnKwIWm.dpuf

Skinny Banter #1: Your Ultimate Game

If you could take your favorite game elements of all time and combine them into the ultimate digital experience – the one game to rule them all – what would it be? How would it work? Describe your digital nirvana, build your ultimate game from the still twitching parts salvaged from other titles. – See more at: http://www.gameskinny.com/hy3mq/ultimate-game-mashup-skinny-banter-1#sthash.4NnKwIWm.dpuf

Skinny Banter #1: Your Ultimate Game

If you could take your favorite game elements of all time and combine them into the ultimate digital experience – the one game to rule them all – what would it be? How would it work? Describe your digital nirvana, build your ultimate game from the still twitching parts salvaged from other titles.

Romancing SaGa: Minstrel Song on the PlayStation 2 was widely ignored but presented a unique progression system that I feel could have been fleshed out to be the one turn-based experience to dwarf all others.

Tossing out the linear storytelling that most expect from JRPGs, Minstrel Song forced you to seek out your quests and take it upon yourself to do them. The game had two hidden scores, event ranking(ER) and battle ranking(BR), that became the determining factor in the player’s experience.

BR would accumulate as players took part in battles, and in turn enemies would become stronger and the player’s ER would increase. ER would open up what quests were available, but would also close those that the player took too long to complete. Grinding in RS:MS is perhaps the worst thing you can do for your experience, unless it’s your goal to grind your way to Saruin.

Nah, man. You don’t wanna do that. (Gets real around 5:07.)

The game’s flexible party system, which allowed the recruitment and total skill customization of various characters across the globe, also added to the feeling that it was your adventure. You could dream up and make the perfect party (advanced classes and all), then hunt down the events and quests that would serve your purposes.

The character customization and behind-the-scenes ranking system in Minstrel Song makes the game one of the most memorable gaming experiences I’ve ever had. The battle system stands as one of my favorites, and it feels rewarding when your party members learn new abilities or improve those they already had — not to mention when they team up and combo an enemy to death.

So what’s wrong here?

Despite having so many locations to wander to, there is a crushing lack of overall content in Romancing SaGa: Minstrel Song. It’s not uncommon for players to find themselves going from town to town looking for any new available quests, and coming up with nothing is disappointing.

What’s there to do when you don’t have any quests you can complete? Well, you fight stuff to force your BR and ER up.

Towns also feel lifeless. Sure, someone might follow you around once in a while — but otherwise things don’t really change. If the things available to me change as I progress, why don’t the conditions of the areas I travel to?

The game’s voice acting is also a serious F- and the complete lack of instruction on the inner-workings of progression both in-game and in the manual make it impossible to get into without a guide on hand to start with. That said, with a little extra beef Minstrel Song could have been the best console RPG of all time. I want that beef.

Bring me Dark Cloud 2

I’m just gonna say it:

Romancing Saga: Minstrel Song with Dark Cloud 2‘s world development and crafting system would be the best thing ever.

We’re no going to argue over whether the original Dark Cloud or 2 was better, but the second game had that fantastic item crafting system and retained the village building aspect of the first game.

RS:MS would also, obviously, have to have some sort of gathering system or monsters would have to drop more loot. In the spirit of the game (aka DEAR GOD DON’T FIGHT UNLESS YOU HAVE TO), a gathering system would be ideal to not only pair with the crafting system, but also to add some more flesh to the game itself. Gathering having a meaningful impact on the ecosystem, much in the way that eliminating certain types of mobs in an area, would also be fantastic.

Expanding the regions available and allowing players to build the cities upon expansion would be the perfect pairing to the ER system, especially if the amount of quests available was exponentially expanded itself.

Smush’em

I don’t want a perfect game. I don’t like how sterilized the gaming environment is today. I want a game with heart. I want a game that the developers put their hearts and souls into, so that I can put my heart and soul into it as well.

Romancing SaGa: Minstrel Song on its own is a game made with a lot of heart, but no budget and distinct engine restrictions. I want the same setting, same characters, same customization, same battle system, and same ER/BR system but some more substance.

I would be happy enough with more quests, but a livelier world with a meaty crafting system and city/village building would make the experience one to live and die for. So much ambition and making it a reality would just be the end-all be-all. That’s it. The end. Time to quit video games, because nothing could ever be better than that. Not even this guy playing Decisive Battle! Saruin on guitar:


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Image of Ashley Shankle
Ashley Shankle
Ashley's been with GameSkinny since the start, and is a certified loot goblin. Has a crippling Darktide problem, 500 hours on only Ogryn (hidden level over 300). Currently playing Darktide, GTFO, RoRR, Palworld, and Immortal Life.