Tri-Ace is in my opinion perhaps
the best all around traditional RPG developer there is, all of their games
usually get good scores from yours truly, and in this ill fated generation of
consoles (at least for us J-RPGs fans) they have been the only developer in
Square/Enix that has managed to keep their high standards set by their previous
works. Infinite Undiscovery silly as that title might sound is s perhaps along
with Tales of Vesperia and Lost Odyssey the best J-RPG bar none I have played
in this generation.
twenty minutes of
Infinite Undiscovery were more fun than the entire 56 hours it took me to get
through Final Fantasy XIII and that’s not an overstatement. The battle system
is reminiscent of Star Ocean, but thanks to improved pacing and easy of level
gaining while on battling make Infinite Undiscovery a much more fun game to
battle in than Star Ocean.
Don’t get me wrong there are some tough battles
here and there, and you will see the game over screen a few times before you
see the credits roll but its battle system is never as intensive and as time
consuming as the ones found in the Star Ocean games .
The game even moves in exploration mode very
similarly to Star Ocean 3, with less mini quests and things to do. There is
even an item creation system that is fairly simplified and it is not necessary
whatsoever to master this system in order to finish the game. Being that the Star Ocean titles are
incredibly deep and somewhat complicated in their approach I truly welcomed
this entry from Tri-Ace just as I welcomed their Radiata Stories RPG for the
The combat is fully in realtime-action meaning
you can move your characters around the battle area and you can attack at will
without having to wait for turns. The battles are fast and fun RPG games with
action battle oriented systems should be the standard of the genre in this day
The game is pretty straight forwards even the
though from the very beginning there are large open areas and you can backtrack
where ever you want to for the most part, and true traditional J-RPG in every
sense of the word.
If there is any complaint that I have with this
title on the gameplay front is that it is too short, of course these days the
game can be found for a measly 12 dollars at gamestop, but in 2008 the game was
worth 50-60 dollars which means that probably many RPG buffs well a bit cheated
from a game that only gave then 18 wonderful hours of gaming, when they are
used to 30 plus hours experiences by Tri Ace.
A FULL FLEDEGED NEXT GEN J-RPG
I still stand by my statement that regardless how
crappy of a game FFXIII is it is still the greatest looking RPG game ever, that
being said after playing Infinite Undiscovery I have discovered that perhaps
XIII isn’t far and away beyond everything else in the market because Infinite
looks nearly as good, and dare I say it has better looking characters and
environments in terms of artistry.
I constantly enjoyed my time in this game, as I
discovered new sights and towns to explore, most impressive however is how good
the anime styled 3-D characters animate when they fight, run and especially
during the cut scenes which mostly (save for the intro) are done in in-game cut scenes.
All in all while J-RPGs usually don’t carry the
baton of graphical prowess in this gen of consoles, Infinite Undiscovery is as
good as it gets.
FINALLY A GOOD STORY FROM SQUARE/ENIX
The one thing that sets apart IU (Infinite
Undiscovery) from FFXIII, aside from actually being fun to play, is that it has
a pretty good story with interesting characters that somehow develop really
well in the measly 18 hours that the game lasts.
Capell is one of the most interesting characters
I have seen in quite a while as is his relationship with Aya. The entire
melodrama between Capell, Sigmund, Aya and Edwards is interesting to
follow. The world itself has an
interesting sub plot going on with the Blessed being the normal citizens of
word while the unblessed are being relegated to outcasts into poverty and
That subplot could have been developed more than
it did, but when the subject is brought up at a midgame pint, it is brought up
the right way. There was a touching moment in the game that really reached out
and touched my heart which is more than I can say for the anything the Final
Fantasy series has done since 2002. One could say that the supporting
characters could have been fleshed out more and one would be right, but the
fact still stands that Capell’s 18 hour journey, is much more fulfilling and
much more thrilling that anything in the 50 plus hours of Lighting’s journey in
the RAILS of Final Fantasy XIII.
Infinite Undiscovery has a good story, with an
old school feel at some points and today in 2011 it is nice to play a J-RPG on
the 360 that actually has a heart and a soul.
MOTOI SAKURABA DOES IT AGAIN
Star Ocean composer and fixture at Tri Ace
delivers another aural masterpiece which perhaps is his best work yet. The
music here approaches the FF quality of old (during the SNES-PS1 era) which is
a good thing. All the tunes fit rightly into the place and the more grand ones
are truly majestic.
The voice acting is remarkably good for all the
leads even if the lip-syncing isn’t quite right for the most part.
BUY IT NOW
You can’t go wrong at this point with Infinite
Undiscovery, it’s a great looking J-RPG with a fast action oriented battles
system and a good tale to boot. No Infinite Undiscovery isn’t the next coming
of Star Ocean on new systems, and yes the game could have been much more with a
few more hours of plot and character development, but in an era where good
J-RPGs are as abundant as a cold Dasani water bottle is in the middle of the
Sahara desert, Infinite Undiscovery manages to quench some of the thirst of us
J-RPG thirsty fans!
Gameplay: 9.0-Easy, fast and simple. This game does a good job of actually
making you enjoy battling in order to level up!
Graphics: 9.0-Amazing Looking Characters and Great looking environments make this
one of the prettiest RPGs around.
Music: 9.5- Motoi Sakuraba at his best? Believe it!
Story: 8.0 –Not the greatest tale ever told but one of the very best ones you can find post PS2 era, the
characters develop nicely and it is comforting to know some at SquareEnix is
still capable of writing an acceptable tale.
Addictiveness: 7.0- Score takes a dive here because there isn’t really much to do in
the game aside from finishing the main plot and that only lasts about 18 hours!
Overall: 8.5-One of the very best buys one can make now on the 360 if J-RPGs
are your thing. Infinite Undiscovery keeps Tri Ace’s track record of games
above the 8s intact!!!