||[Apr. 6th, 2005|10:35 am]
Started playing STED: Starfield of Memorable Relics. This is a NES game that was more or less translated (as best as I can understand the readme files) via translating the lines without seeing them in the context of the game. As you might imagine, this means that there's some problems with the coherency of the game. However, there's some nifty aspects if you take into account the age of the game.|
Edited: Added some information about getting past the section involving the broken harp and the second password.
First of all, they actually bothered to make a sprite for each character. You've got your lavender hero who starts the game as a fairly rounded fighter with a hair of magic (unnamed hero) , a blue guy with an odd ear spike helmet doohickey who's your thug (Actes), a pink young lady who's a mage (Corona), and a robot named Gap. If your hero dies, you get to walk around with the sprite for Actes, and if Actes dies, you walk around as Corona. I haven't dared to kill all the human characters to see if you can toodle around as Gap.
Secondly, you've got an interesting healing system. All your characters have a set amount of health per limb as well as their general hit points. You can lose an arm or leg through battle even if you've slept at an in to regain full health. To cure body damage, you either need to take the robot to a repair shop and pay a small amount of money or you need to go to a hospital. Inns are not an in and out affair, but instead a set fee for a number of nights.
Finally, the game is eerily like Phantasy Star. You've got 3D ish mazes for dungeons. You've got a pretty similar battle interface. You've got the oddly rounded bubble houses. You've got (as best as I can understand the plot) a bad military leader. Even the dungeon music is faintly similar.
Bad points - the game can be ruthless. Weapons have appropiately frightening names (Acid gun, Heat knife, Gold spear, etc.) but their cost can skyrocket. Right now, I'm making about 300 credits per battle, and the average piece of weaponry is in the 3500 to 4000 range. There is, unlike Phantasy Star II, a nice sense of satisfaction once the weapons have been obtained. Unlike spending an ungodly amount for a scalpel and watching your characters whittle at enemies, you do get a nice increase in power with each weapon.
Guns and beam cannons for the robot both need batteries. Equipping a new gun clears the charge on it, and the old one. You cannot hit anything with a gun equipped unless if you have a battery. Translation: You'll be jamming batteries up Actes and Gap a lot. Thankfully, batteries are fairly common, and are cheap (10 credits, for about 100+ uses.)
There is an enemy that destroys items in your inventory. If that item was a lamp for the dungeon, a rare item, or a teleporter to return to your base camp - you're screwed. If they destroy all your batteries and your gun charges run down, you're screwed. So far, there's no warp from town to town. There's only a way to warp back to your last save point. If you've got two towns you need to keep visiting - you're screwed.
The plot is - interesting. Actes and 'Hero' were called down to the planet by a distress call, and the military govenor they meet burbles that everything is okay (and then, thanks to a glitch, vanishes). Corona wants to find out what's going on and joins your party. Thanks to the translation issues, there's several characters who have bouts of amnesia ("Here's the Litromin!" *talk to them again* "What's Litromin?") or strange brain collaspes ("If you can find my husband's watch, I would be very gratefull." *finds watch, returns to woman* "Thank you for the watch. Try to find the old man near the mountain." *talks to her again* "Uuuuuuuugh.")
Either way -
The link below leads to a Japanese website (which the google translator does a pretty good job on, actually). It has maps to all the dungeons, and quite readable instructions for how to get through the game. To preserve the north is up, right is right, left is left paradigm, all maps need to be flipped right to left, and flipped vertically. After that, they're fairly readable. Red lines are doors, black is walls, y's are entrances, the yenish symbol is the exit, E's are enemies that are always there, and C's are items that you have to search for.
The link below is a partial shrine to the game on rpgclassics.
Edited to add:
Password for the second tower is 8492.
Third tower = 5193.
To obtain it, take the harp from the north cave to the Capital city. Talk to a man in a house on the left side of town. Get the ito from the orange worm creatures you'll find near town (I was lucky with one as I was standing on the top half of the town sprite.) Bring the ito to the man. (Enjoy his conversation which includes comments like "You've got the harp! Let's go to North Cave," and "You've got the thread. Maybe there are threads in North Cave?" I think something got glitched.)
Now, take the harp back down to the south of the town with no item shop (Seiruni, I believe). South of the town, south of the forest, there's a set of small mountains. Find a pair of them side by side, and use the harp on the right one. You'll get a message about the water being tainted and you'll enter an oddly ruined area. Go north, and talk to the computer. It'll babble at you and offer to heal you. This will let you rearrange _all_ your attribute points attributed thus far. When you are done, you will be teleported to the right.
This area is _very_ glitchy. Do not wander around, or you may be teleported randomly to a blank space where you can't walk. This might be true in the Japanese version as well, since I saw a mention of a bug. You want to head south and left toward the differently colored walkway.