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Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007




Metal Saga is an interesting little RPG. It's a 2005 game for the PS2, and it really never got a ton of success in the States - possibly because it was the second-to-last entry in a five-game series that we never saw any of. The graphics were dated when it came out, the plot is difficult to actually find because the game is so open-ended, and if you don't know how events are triggered, you will spend hours wandering around doing nothing.

On the other hand, it's an extremely charming game, with a great sense of humor, and it actually does have a plot - it just, well, takes knowing how to trigger the various events. Fortunately, I do know how to do this. I hope to show off all of the endings; certainly I will show off all of the endings I know of. There are a lot of permutations on them.

Now, it's kind of hard to avoid some spoilers - the game spoils a lot on its own. But please, try to avoid spoilers for character backstories and future events. You can mention that some events exist, but please try to avoid details, and definitely use spoiler tags if you really have to bring it up.

I will be getting as many of the collectible tanks as I can; there are a few that are mutually exclusive. In the case of mutually exclusive tanks or other things, I will leave the decision to you guys. (I will always show all options if I can; all mutually exclusive things that I know of can be exchanged for each other fairly freely.)

Can you tell me anything about the Metal Max series?

No.

This is the only Metal Max game I have ever played. I don't read or speak Japanese, so everything I know about the rest of the series is based on Wikipedia.

Do you recommend this game?

If you can take JRPG standard combat systems, sure. It's got some innovative tricks going on, largely related to the tanks, and it is very charming. But it is not a game that is easily playable without a guide - several events have very specific triggers, and the game really doesn't believe in handholding when it comes to showing you what you're meant to be doing.

But if you're okay with that? Yeah, I'd say it's pretty okay. It's no Operation Darkness, that's for sure.

The Metal Saga Field Manual posted:

In this game, you assume the role of a boy who wants to be a hunter like his father. You are not at the mercy of fate, nor are you destined to be a hero of legend. You weren't born with mysterious powers, nor were you blessed by the gods. In fact, you're basically on your own in this harsh world, and where you go is completely up to you.

All you have is your will to be a hunter - nothing more, and nothing less.

That's why in this game there aren't any required missions. There are simply optional tasks that you'll find as you encounter various people and places during your adventuring. It's up to you which ones you choose to undertake. It's not as complicated as it sounds. Just try doing whatever you feel like doing. When you encounter an event that sounds like fun, give it a shot.

Fight monsters. Be the hero. It's up to you.
There are no restrictions in this world.

Feel free to explore and create your own original story!

Table of Contents
Update 1: Game's Over, Go Home
Update 2: My Home Town
Update 3: Oops, I Died
Update 4: Marriage Is What Brings Us Together Today
Update 5: gently caress Mine Detectors
Update 6: Dogs
Update 7: On the Hunt
Update 8, Part 1: The Time Has Come, The Walrus Said, To Speak Of Many Things
Update 8, Part 2: Of Shoes And Ships And Sealing Wax
Update 9: Back to the Grind
Update 10: Snakes
Update 11: No Disassemble
Update 12: gently caress Eagles
Update 13: Journey to the West
Update 14: This Episode Brought To You By The Letter M
Update 15: New Faces
Update 16: The Great Khan
Update 17: Muscling On
Update 18: Ultimate Muscle
Update 19: Wait, It's Been How Long?
Update 20: Beautiful Lorelei Bay
Update 21: Revenge of the Old People
Update 22: Grinding on the Waves

Mors Rattus fucked around with this message at Aug 13, 2014 around 21:13

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Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


Cast of Characters

Max: What it says. Nicknamed Grease Monkey.


Misha: Our childhood friend and a mechanic. She's happy to marry Max if asked. The daughter of Nikolai and Martha. Kiriya's younger sister.


Kiriya: Our childhood friend and a mechanic. The adopted son of Nikolai and Martha. Misha's older brother. His biological father is the Disassembler.


Rashid: A swordsman who can dodge bullets.


Charlene: A gunslinger of immense skill. Used to live in Alice One. A former member of the Rouge Rogues.


Iggy: Our faithful dog! A Boston Terrier, designated BD3. Found in a microwave in an old biogenetics lab.


Nina: Dear old Mom. Wishes that we'd just settle down and be an engineer.


Emily: Our little sister. Likes the color pink. Always wanted a Boston Terrier.


Eddy: Our dad. A hunter; otherwise fairly mysterious.


Jack: A friend of the family and a bartender. Father of Rachel.


Rachel: Our childhood friend. Angry all the time. Has a thing for Max. Works at her father's bar.


Scarlet: An experienced hunter. Thinks Max is just adorable. Always looking out for herself.


Dr. Solomon: A retired hunter who studies monsters. Can only bench 440 lbs now.


The Medal Collector: Collects Big Medals.
Hare Head: Knows a lot about the history of the world.


McKinley: A traveler and a friend of Eddy's. Knows a lot about towns.


Dr. Mortem: A genius who performs experiments that might be able to revive the dead. Not the sort of man who can live with half a heart.


Igor: Dr. Mortem's assistant. Collects materials.


Alex: A man in a suit who works for an organization that wants to restore human civilization. Eddy doesn't trust him.


Clive: A short, fat man in a suit who works for Alex.


Connie: A tall, thin woman in a suit who works for Alex.


Martha: Nikolai's wife. Mother of Misha and Kiriya.


Nikolai: Nina's friend and a mechanic. Husband of Martha, father of Misha and Kiriya. Very excitable.


The Curry Guru: A mysterious man who sells delicious curry.


MC Hamir: A tank-finder for hire. Brags a lot and has Fawful-esque diction.


Rosa Beldaire: A hunter and tank collector. Rich. Sister of Carl Beldaire. Hates being called Princess.


Sebastian: Rosa Beldaire's butler.


Carl Beldaire: A mechanic. Brother of Rosa Beldaire. Quiet.


Catherine: A girl who wants her teddy bear, Gluttony, back.


Arthur Beldaire: The leader of Beldaire. Father of Rosa and Carl, friend of Eddy.


Mad Maxwell: An outlaw and a captain of the League of Uncivilized Barbarians.


Colonel Blueberry: An outlaw and commander of the Blueberry Army. Lazy, but rich.


The Disassembler: A strange outlaw mechanic that lives to destroy tanks. The biological father of Kiriya. Also known as the White Terror.


Murasame: A mysterious swordsman who lost a duel to Rashid.


Fredrick: An outlaw and leader of the Daltons.


Shasta: An outlaw and member of the Daltons.


Roberto: An outlaw and member of the Daltons.


Sodam Insein: A mysterious map salesman. Tried and failed to ambush the party.


Gorou: The head of Torikami. Husband of Suzu, father of Kaede. Worried about Orochi and his daughter.


Suzu: Wife of Gorou, mother of Kaede.


Kaede: Daughter of Gorou and Suzu. Potential sacrifice to Orochi.


Leon: A researcher into the past. Friend of Eddie.


Wayne: A rope-using bounty hunter on the trail of Derringer Jack.


Granddaddy Kong: An outlaw. Also, a giant talking gorilla.


Dr. Zeus: An ape swordsman. Worked for Granddaddy Kong.


Jared: A traveler. Eldest and leader of the orphans of Forever Land. Elder brother of Remi.


Julie: A traveler. Eldest girl of the orphans of Forever Land. Jared's assistant.


Zed: An outlaw and member of the Daltons.


Francine: An outlaw and member of the Daltons.


Danny: An orphan of Forever Land. Kind of a punk.


Gaspar: Youngest of the orphans of Forever Land. A girl.


Patricia: An orphan of Forever Land. Younger sister of Patrick. Wants to be a hunter.


Patrick: An orphan of Forever Land. Elder brother of Patricia.


Remi: An orphan of Forever Land. Younger sister of Jared.


Robby: An orphan of Forever Land. Really really (really) likes tanks.


Syd: An orphan of Forever Land. Weird.


Golem: Bodyguard of the orphans of Forever Land. Formerly Fang of the Rouge Rogues.


Shaka Khan: An outlaw and leader of the League of Uncivilized Barbarians. Slaughtered most of the Rouge Rogues.


Father Muscle: An outlaw and the spiritual leader of Gluteus Maximism.


Thursday: A robot that lives with Dr. Palm. Kind of an rear end in a top hat.


Dr. Palm: A man who wanted a friend. Likes tanks.


The Puppetmaster, AKA Joe: An outlaw who was being controlled by his puppet.


Marceau: A talking, mind-controlling outlaw puppet.


Man o' War: An outlaw that wanted to become human.


Professor Marilyn Grey: A cyberneticist.


Oliver: An orphan who was being used by criminals to pick locks.


Helga: An aged outlaw who wants to protect the old.


Olga: A retired hunter.


Wheelchair Willy: An aged outlaw who wants to protect the old.

Mors Rattus fucked around with this message at Aug 9, 2014 around 19:22

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


Update One: Game's Over, Go Home


(Click here to watch the intro video!)


Well, that's promising! I like Atlus games, usually. They've published a lot! However, they were just the publisher here.



That's less promising. Success developed Metal Saga, and...well, they also developed the last game I tried to LP, Operation Darkness. And that game sucked so hard that I literally could not finish it - the final mission was just too tedious, combined with some recording issues I had. However! This game does not suffer from the same issues, at least. It has some issues, but they are new ones! Besides, they were not the sole developers.



Crea-Tech and Success have been working together on the Metal Max series for a while! Metal Saga, known in Japan as Metal Saga: Sajin no Kusari, which Wikipedia tells me means 'Chain of Sandstorm', is the only installment of the series that has ever been localized, and the only one I have ever played and know anything about.






Metal Saga is a post-apocalyptic RPG about tanks. It is very open-ended, far moreso than most JRPGs, and this is our main character. He has no official name in English; in Japan, the default is 'Syu.' You guys will get to name him when we start on our second run.






In case you're wondering, this is not what the game looks like. These anime graphics are solely for the intro video. This is one of the Mechanic-class party members, Kiriya. We won't be meeting him on our first run. Mechanics are relatively weak in combat compared to the main character or the Soldier-class characters, but can repair things. And being in a tank makes combat weakness less relevant.






And this is Misha, the other Mechanic. We won't be seeing her on our first run, either.



Or any of these guys except the main character. They are not party members.






We won't be meeting Rashid, the melee Soldier.






Or Charlene, the ranged Soldier.





This is what the game actually looks like. Not that we'll be going there until after the first ending.






So, with all those teasers out of the way, let's get started.




All games start with the options menu. Smart Park is 'automatically exit your tanks if you go somewhere tanks can't go.' Everything else should be obvious.



(Click here to view the cutscene!)


We join our intrepid hero, whom I have named Hunter, as he is being lectured by his mother.



There's a lot of headshots in this game - characters change expression fairly often.

: Well, I think it's a bad idea. It's a terrible, needless job.



Lots of changing camera angles, too! There was effort put into this, for all it's pretty early PS2 rendering.

: ...Most people don't have a very high opinion of hunters...
: If I had my way, your father wouldn't be a hunter, either.



This is Emily, the main character's little sister. She's...well, she's present.



: Now, there's still plenty of time for you to train as a mechanic in order to inherit the family business. I think you'd be really good at it, and not just because you're my son.



And now, we have a choice.



But really, how could we disappoint Mom? I think she's right.



: You are my son, after all, so it only makes sense that you'd become the best mechanic around. I've always believed in you.

Then, we cut to our dad and sister.




: Yeah. You'd think he was born to be a mechanic.



: You know, Dad, Hunter is working really hard.



: the best mechanic around. But, he's my son, too... I always thought he'd make a good hunter.
: ......
: What?
: Are you actually jealous?
: Huh? Well, how can I say this...? I guess I'm jealous. ...Maybe a little. When he was a kid, he always ran around saying, "I wanna be a hunter like Daddy when I grow up!" ...I guess I just got my hopes up.
: ......
: It's his life, though. He can make his own decisions. Being a hunter is far from easy... As a parent, it's nice not to be worried about him dying. ...I guess.

The main character has a very supportive family. On the other hand, Eddy's being kind of weird there at the end.


spending his life a a mechanic. He would never fight a giant flying manta ray... Nor would he find a pet dog with heavy artillery on its back. No, he wouldn't even encounter a cult of body-builders obsessed with ab toning and proper waxing techniques. Truly, Hunter lived one of the most boring lives ever imagined. Sure, he eventually gets married and has a few kids, who go on to lead equally dull and boring lives. And, of course he dies quietly in bed. But every man dies--not every man truly awakens an attractive female robotic weapon, designed long ago by scientists that time forgot. Hunter didn't, anyway. That's for sure.

And...roll credits!



We got none of the bounties! But we do get to see my favorite Special Thanks entry.



The JSDF. Now, let's see our perfect 0% run!





So ends run #1! Total gameplay: a single menu choice. You guys get to choose a name for Run #2's main character! Up to 8 characters, and I'll choose whichever one I like best!

Mors Rattus fucked around with this message at Mar 30, 2014 around 18:00

Suspect Bucket
Jan 14, 2012

I will put a pigeon on this gun. The bird is an accessory.

Haha, that's an awesome way to start. I see good things coming from this LP!

Tetrakarn
Nov 1, 2011


Hey, I've played this series before! There is a translation patch for Metal Max Returns, which is a SNES remake of the first Metal Max game. It was fairly interesting, with the best thing about it being the humor if I'm remembering it correctly. Another cool feature was the change in power between being on foot and being in a tank. You felt rather weak just walking about, but once you got into a tank you kicked butt, only to be forced out again.

I never actually looked to see what was up with the other games in the series, but I had a good time with MMR, so I look foward to this LP.

dijon du jour
Mar 27, 2013

King Graham:
The Faces of Evil


Question: how many confusing-dialogue hilarities would be gained from naming the main character Hunter?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


dijon du jour posted:

Question: how many confusing-dialogue hilarities would be gained from naming the main character Hunter?

Not a ton, though there are a few spots where people spend a fair amount of time talking about hunters.

Blind Sally
Jan 9, 2007

Jim's now a Blind Cave Salamander!


Mors Rattus posted:

You guys get to choose a name for Run #2's main character! Up to 8 characters, and I'll choose whichever one I like best!

Mad Max.

PotatoManJack
Nov 9, 2009


Name: El Guapo

Because he's a handsome devil

ultrafilter
Aug 23, 2007

I'M A BUTTWIZARD

AND ALSO A BOOBWIZARD COME TO THINK OF IT


Dongs. Just for the nostalgia.

dijon du jour
Mar 27, 2013

King Graham:
The Faces of Evil


I'm gonna go for the other war reference and name him Patton.

SilentW
Apr 3, 2009

my It dept hgere is fucking clwonshoes, and as someone hwo used to do IT for 9 years it pains me to see them fbe so terriuble

Who run postapocalyptia? Master Blaster run postapocalyptia!

EDIT: Alternatively, if we can name him Master and the tank Blaster, that's cool too.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


SilentW posted:

Who run postapocalyptia? Master Blaster run postapocalyptia!

EDIT: Alternatively, if we can name him Master and the tank Blaster, that's cool too.

Eight character limit, but we do get to name our tanks.

Matthews
Feb 24, 2012


I vote for Max.

Tetrakarn
Nov 1, 2011


SilentW posted:

Who run postapocalyptia? Master Blaster run postapocalyptia!

EDIT: Alternatively, if we can name him Master and the tank Blaster, that's cool too.

The tank's name is SOPHIA and the dude's name is Jason then.

SSNeoman
Jul 19, 2011

Villain tip: Next time kill
someone I actually like.


Maverick

Because come on.

PoptartsNinja
May 9, 2008

He is still almost definitely not a spy


Mors Rattus posted:

You guys get to choose a name for Run #2's main character! Up to 8 characters, and I'll choose whichever one I like best!

Tank because confusion is fun.

Picayune
Feb 26, 2007

Dog-Disciple Of
Shadow And Flame


I like it already.

He's a hunter? Name him Elmer Fudd. (Or, you know, just Elmer.)

Ulvirich
Jun 26, 2007

A real man wears a kilt ya wee bastards!

Clicked on the thread because I thought it was Metal Slug, left entirely disappointed.

Marco

Shinjobi
Jul 10, 2008

"Trafalgar Law...his manners aren't too good."



Or Max. Either is fine with me.

citybeatnik
Mar 1, 2013


Leona. And name the tank Bonaparte when you get the chance.

Blind Sally
Jan 9, 2007

Jim's now a Blind Cave Salamander!


Shinjobi posted:

Or Max. Either is fine with me.

And name the tank "Last V8".

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


I should note: we're going to ending the LP with significantly more than one tank.

We will be getting one tank very soon, though. Well, I say 'tank.' It's close enough.

Cosmic Afro
May 23, 2011


Did that Rashid man just cleave a shark in half, there? Some kinda mutant shark, sure, but shark none the less. And by the looks of where he IS, this seems to be a LAND SHARK.

I'm voting Max. We are, however, required to call one of our tanks the LAND SHARK in honor of that.

Tupperwarez
Apr 4, 2004

"phphphphphphpht"? this is what you're going with?

you sure?


Cosmic Afro posted:

Did that Rashid man just cleave a shark in half, there? Some kinda mutant shark, sure, but shark none the less. And by the looks of where he IS, this seems to be a LAND SHARK.
Yes. The Middle Eastern swordsman is cleaving a giant mutant sandshark in the middle of the post-apocalyptic desert. There is also a bit in the intro where he cuts a tank shell in two just before it hits him.

And yes, those are bazooka dogs, killer tomatoes, a muscle posing minigame, a drinking minigame, a cyborg octopus, and a mad scientist bringing the main character back to life.

I loving love Metal Saga. Buckle up motherfuckers, we're in for a hell of a ride.

Also, Rattus, do you have the game manual by any chance? You should add the blurb at the start of the manual to the OP. I think it sums up the game pretty nicely.

Tupperwarez fucked around with this message at Mar 19, 2014 around 06:00

burnaboy
Jun 2, 2011


Jumping on the Max Bandwagon. Are you going to show off all the endings?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


Tupperwarez posted:

Also, Rattus, do you have the game manual by any chance? You should add the blurb at the start of the manual to the OP. I think it sums up the game pretty nicely.

I'll have to dig around. I think I might.

And I plan to show off all the endings I know about - I'm pretty sure there's a few I don't, but I will be experimenting.

E: Crap, looks like the manual may have been thrown away at some point, I can't find it in my game drawers.

E: Wait, no. It fell between drawers. Which blurb do you mean - the prologue, the objective or the world of Metal Saga one?

Mors Rattus fucked around with this message at Mar 19, 2014 around 06:07

EagerSleeper
Feb 3, 2010

I don't suffer from insanity; I enjoy every minute of it.


Ulvirich posted:

Clicked on the thread because I thought it was Metal Slug, left entirely disappointed.

Marco

The same as this person! Except I wasn't disappointed at all by this ending.

Tupperwarez
Apr 4, 2004

"phphphphphphpht"? this is what you're going with?

you sure?


Mors Rattus posted:

E: Wait, no. It fell between drawers. Which blurb do you mean - the prologue, the objective or the world of Metal Saga one?
The one that says "All you have is your will to be a hunter - nothing more, nothing less." The prologue is sorta interesting too, but you can explain backstory stuff as we meet the various batshit insane enemies and outlaws.

Also, are you gonna hoard the junk you get from outlaws, then appraise it? I ask only because there's only a set number of Ancient Junk as far as I know, so if you wanna show off all the special weapons, you're probably gonna have to do a few reloads. Not really a big deal though, we're not gonna be dealing with Ancient Junk for quite a while.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


Sure, I can add that in. And I haven't decided what I'll be doing with that stuff yet! Fortunately, saving and reloading shouldn't be too big a deal for me.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007


From the manual:

The Metal Saga Field Manual posted:

In this game, you assume the role of a boy who wants to be a hunter like his father. You are not at the mercy of fate, nor are you destined to be a hero of legend. You weren't born with mysterious powers, nor were you blessed by the gods. In fact, you're basically on your own in this harsh world, and where you go is completely up to you.

All you have is your will to be a hunter - nothing more, and nothing less.

That's why in this game there aren't any required missions. There are simply optional tasks that you'll find as you encounter various people and places during your adventuring. It's up to you which ones you choose to undertake. It's not as complicated as it sounds. Just try doing whatever you feel like doing. When you encounter an event that sounds like fun, give it a shot.

Fight monsters. Be the hero. It's up to you.
There are no restrictions in this world.

Feel free to explore and create your own original story!

Mehuyael
Mar 17, 2009


Max power!

Senerio
Oct 19, 2009

I have a special ability. The ability to remove humor out of any joke.

Here, let me demonstrate. Just look over to the right.


Sam, to counteract all these Max votes.

Mehuyael
Mar 17, 2009


Senerio posted:

Sam, to counteract all these Max votes.

If this wins please name the tank "Little Buddy".

Getsuya
Oct 2, 2013

The dream and romance of any REAL man!


Guys c'mon this is the 'Metal Saga' so obviously the main character's name is Metal. Duh.

We should also name a tank Metal. Metal rode Metal. It was very Metal.

Tupperwarez
Apr 4, 2004

"phphphphphphpht"? this is what you're going with?

you sure?


Getsuya posted:

Guys c'mon this is the 'Metal Saga' so obviously the main character's name is Metal. Duh.

We should also name a tank Metal. Metal rode Metal. It was very Metal.

Monsters tried to destroy The Metal.
THEY FAILED! And they were smote into the ground!

Other tanks tried to destroy The Metal.
THEY FAILED! And they were sent to the impound!

Outlaws tried to destroy The Metal.
AHAHAHA THEY FAILED! As they were thrown to the ground!

Flytrap
Apr 30, 2013


Oh man, dis game, LOVE dis game. Gonna have to vote for Max.

Magnuslord
Jul 19, 2008


Erwin Rommel, or just Rommel because history....and...erm...stuff?

Onmi
Jul 12, 2013

SHUT THE FUCK UP ABOUT BLOODPACTS

I agree with Metal

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The_Frag_Man
Mar 26, 2005

Woman 2.0

Name him Arnold

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