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Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!




Tokyo Xanadu is an action RPG developed by Falcom and published by Aksys Games for the Vita in June 2017, followed by a Playstation 4 and PC port in December of that year called Tokyo Xanadu eX+ (We're playing this version). Aside from the obvious graphical and framerate improvements from the Vita version, eX+ also adds side story missions in between each of the main chapters (which are good), and an entirely new postgame story which is...uh...well, we'll get to that. I'll leave it at "I'm not a fan".

Falcom's stated goal with the game was to create something with a "different feel" than their two flagship series (Ys and Trails), and if you're just looking at the setting they might have succeeded. In its heart, however, Tokyo Xanadu is a Trails game through and through. The vast majority of your time in the game is going to be spent getting intimately familiar with Morimiya City, whether that's through hanging out with your friends, following along with the NPC storylines, or reading through the mountains of in-game books, each of which comes with 5-10 pages of flavor text describing anything from the instruction manual for your phone to a newspaper recap of whatever plot events are going on in the background this week. And they're good words! While Tokyo Xanadu isn't quite the page turner that something like, say, Trails to Zero is, the characterization and connected lore is by far the game's strongest aspect, and the thing it wants you to be spending most of your time with. Somewhat less exciting are the game's dungeons, which are all standalone little areas with their own gimmicks and challenges; it's very "Breath of the Wild shrine-y", for lack of a better way of putting it, while the combat system itself is basically ripped straight out of modern Ys. It's not bad by any means, but it is definitely the least interesting part of the entire package and gets very samey very quickly.

With that explanation out of the way, this LP is going to be a bit different than some of the other ones I've done. We'll still be doing commentary over cutscenes and whatnot, but expect commentary to be a bit more sparse than it might otherwise be. The game isn't dubbed, and there's a lot of conversation so for the most part we'll be letting the game speak for itself. Also, fair warning going in - Falcom is not the kind of developer to hide behind "irony" or "deconstruction" for the most part. When they do something, they do it earnestly; usually by starting extremely cliché before they build to an eight-layer plot twist by the end of the game . I'm telling you this now, because the main setting is a high school anime. Take that as you will.

Joining me on this ride are my good friends ChaosArgate and nine-gear crow, along with a brief appearance by Admiral H. Curtiss along the way. Crow and Argate are both blind, although with how straightforward the game tends to be, that's not really saying much.





Part 1: A Crack in Reality
Part 2: The Anime Singularity
Part 3: Doth Thou Desire the -Power-?
Part 4: A Dungeon Crawling Experience
Part 5: White Shroud



Part 6: Grandpa Kokonoe
Part 7: Saboru and the 3D Pig She-Orcs
Part 8: Hot Fuzz, the Anime
Part 9: Kou Tokisaka, Interior Decorator Extraordinaire
Part 10: The Piss Dungeon
Part 11: The Cell Phone Blacksmiths
Part 12: The Person Sitting Over There
Part 13: Moonlit Garden
Part 14: Girls' Day Out



Part 15: My Cybercrimes
Part 16: Mystery of the Trumpet
Part 17: Read the Phone Manual
Part 18: Rean Bean's Mean Fishing Machine
Part 19: A Knockoff Death Note
Part 20: Geofront Wannabe
Part 21: Fashion Statements
Part 22: When You Give a Nerd a Hammer
Part 23: Living in a Digital World
Part 24: Bang Bang, Pull my Devil Trigger



Part 25: The Dipshit Twins vs. Jun's Amazon Guardians
Part 26: We Have Increased the Anime Quotient
Part 27: Sora's New Shoes
Part 28: Blaming the Victim
Part 29: The Great Detective Kou
Part 30: Behind Enemy Lines
Part 31: Mind Wipe Critical Failure
Part 32: Please Go To Sleep
Part 33: A Blaze of Glory
Part 34: Aki's Drug Den
Part 35: The Suffering of Yuuki Shinomiya



Part 36: Silent Morimiya
Part 37: Kou Tokisaka's Pro Skater
Part 38: Mighty Morimaru and a Rion Rendezvous
Part 39: Top 10 Anime Betrayals
Part 40: Mitsuki Explains it All
Part 41: Player Two Asuka
Part 42: The Crimson Witch
Part 43: The Final Fantasy XIII Experience
Part 44: ONLY an A Rank?
Part 45: Just Stare Into the Light...
Part 46: Eclipse and Chill



Part 47: The Fanservice Episode
Part 48: Second Dinner
Part 49: The Cool, Refreshing Taste of a Dr. Paper
Part 50: The Wall is a Metaphor
Part 51: A Girl and Her Puppy
Part 52: It's Time to Cast "Gun"



Part 53: Tactical Eclipse Drops
Part 54: Thanks For the Date ❤
Part 55: Star of the Show
Part 56: Kou Tokisaka's Combat Extravaganza
Part 57: Father of the Year
Part 58: The Secret, Exciting Life of Mr. Gorou
Part 59: Voice of an Angel
Part 60: Mitsuki Explains it All...Again
Part 61: Ryouta Saves the Day
Part 62: An Idol's Plea
Part 63: Go Dance With the Angels
Part 64: Towa and the TARDIS



Part 65: Relationship Goals
Part 66: Extradimensional Firefighters
Part 67: The Interview
Part 68: Tony Hawk's Midlife Crisis
Part 69: The Evolution of Kawaii-ness in Japanese Anime Character Designs
Part 70: We're Here to Kill Chaos
Part 71: Arctic Abyss
Part 72: Mitsuki Cannot Stop Explaining It All
Part 73: Mr. Gorou's Wild Ride (Part 1)
Part 74: Mr. Gorou's Wild Ride (Part 2)
Part 75: The Very Definitely Final Dungeon
Part 76: Elevate the Tango



Part 77: A Family Affair
Part 78: Gentrification or Genocide?
Part 79: Oops! All Ice Physics
Part 80: Even Ryouta Figured It Out
Part 81: Can We Put Him Back?
Part 82: Welcome to Hell
Part 83: Orange is the New Blue
Part 84: Too Many Bonds
Part 85: May I Offer You a Solar Egg in this Trying Time?
Part 86: SPiKa Hot Spots
Part 87: Storming the Tower
Part 88: Pandora's Islands
Part 89: The Dungeon Now Known as "Box"
Part 90: Shiori Kurashiki and the Existential Tantrum
Part 91: All is a Lie



Part 92: In Search of a "Better" Ending
Part 93: The Local Band Experience
Part 94: Rem's Darkest Secrets
Part 95: Father of the Year, the Sequel
Part 96: Hot Springs Special
Part 97: A Puppy and His Girl



Part 98: A Halloween Hideaway
Part 99: Professional Trick-or-Treaters
Part 100: Oktoberfest Boats
Part 101: Revenge of the Morimaru Dance
Part 102: The Ryouta Redemption Arc
Part 103: The Boundary of Exhaustion
Part 104: The Cutscene Delivery Tube
Part 105: Mr. Kitteh
Part 106: The Incredible Saeki Gorou
Part 107: Get in the Robot, Towa
Part 108: Proactively Stabbing Children
Part 109: The Extradimensional Goatse Hole
Part 110: One Last Loose End
Part 111: Twilight Apostle
Part 112: Sunshine Road

Artix fucked around with this message at 01:19 on Aug 4, 2022

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Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


reserved

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013






Aw gently caress, here we go.

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


:siren: Part 1: A Crack in Reality :siren:
:siren: Part 2: The Anime Singularity
:siren:

Welcome to Tokyo Xanadu! We're gonna jump straight in and rip the band-aid off with Episode 2, which is unfortunately 30 minutes of setup for a high-school anime played as straight as an arrow. This game is very dumb and very anime, but I promise it will never get as bad as it is here.

ChaosArgate
Oct 10, 2012

Why does everyone think I'm going to get in trouble?



I haven't actually experienced anything Falcom for myself, so this is gonna be a fun ride.

Admiral H. Curtiss
May 11, 2010

I think there are a bunch of people who can create trailing images. I know some who could do this as if they were just going out for a stroll.


This game is neat and chill, I hope everyone has a good time.

Hwurmp
May 20, 2005

I LIKE TO MAKE VAGUE THREATS TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET BECAUSE I AM TOUGH GUY. P.S. ASK ME ABOUT THE TIME A GIRL BEAT ME UP IN GRADE SCHOOL. HER NAME WAS SUZIE SHE DREW A BIG WEINER ON MY FOREHEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Koh

it's pronounced Koh

:spergin:

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013






Hwurmp posted:

Koh

it's pronounced Koh

:spergin:

We're all going to pronounce it Ku now for the rest of the LP.

Hwurmp
May 20, 2005

I LIKE TO MAKE VAGUE THREATS TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET BECAUSE I AM TOUGH GUY. P.S. ASK ME ABOUT THE TIME A GIRL BEAT ME UP IN GRADE SCHOOL. HER NAME WAS SUZIE SHE DREW A BIG WEINER ON MY FOREHEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

that's KouKou for KouKou Puffs

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


Kah is my favorite anime protagonist, I hope he gets some good moments later on

pointlessone
Aug 6, 2001

The Triad Frog is pleased with this custom title purchase.

I don't think anyone's going to survive an anime tropes drinking game. Good god.

Hunt11
Jul 24, 2013



Grimey Drawer

pointlessone posted:

I don't think anyone's going to survive an anime tropes drinking game. Good god.

If it goes on for 30 minutes at a time then sure. Anything longer and it does start to get ugly.

megane
Jun 20, 2008





Triple shot of anime, straight, on the rocks, no chaser

e: The lip animation in this is harrowing

megane fucked around with this message at 01:28 on Apr 6, 2021

ChaosArgate
Oct 10, 2012

Why does everyone think I'm going to get in trouble?



megane posted:

Triple shot of anime, straight, on the rocks, no chaser

Sir, we're out of Tokyo Mirage Sessions, can I interest you in a nice Love Live.

Hwurmp
May 20, 2005

I LIKE TO MAKE VAGUE THREATS TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET BECAUSE I AM TOUGH GUY. P.S. ASK ME ABOUT THE TIME A GIRL BEAT ME UP IN GRADE SCHOOL. HER NAME WAS SUZIE SHE DREW A BIG WEINER ON MY FOREHEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

megane posted:

Triple shot of anime, straight, on the rocks, no chaser

e: The lip animation in this is harrowing

your ID says you're 2,996 years old

we don't serve minors

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


megane posted:

e: The lip animation in this is harrowing

I'm sorry, are you asking for animation? In the Cold Steel 2 engine? In this economy? Frankly, I think your expectations were a little high coming in.

Hwurmp
May 20, 2005

I LIKE TO MAKE VAGUE THREATS TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET BECAUSE I AM TOUGH GUY. P.S. ASK ME ABOUT THE TIME A GIRL BEAT ME UP IN GRADE SCHOOL. HER NAME WAS SUZIE SHE DREW A BIG WEINER ON MY FOREHEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

given Falcom's typical budgets, it's a miracle we even got that fade-out when Towa stepped off the footstool

NGDBSS
Dec 30, 2009








Since you folks asked, yes Asuka's algebra is correct. Falcom does something similar in Cold Steel 3 on a ballistics calculation and even sneaks in the assumption of a particular type of drag.

Will you be showing off the NG+ exclusive content when it becomes relevant?

ChaosArgate posted:

I haven't actually experienced anything Falcom for myself, so this is gonna be a fun ride.
Falcom has a particular oeuvre you can identify if you've seen enough of its work. I remember people comparing this game unfavorably to Persona, and that lens constantly grinds my gears because it's from the wrong direction. As noted above, TX here occupies a similar space to Persona but mostly by way of convergent evolution. Both are "supernatural high school anime" games at first glance. But while Persona is a derivative of the philosophical Shin Megami Tensei games, TX is a derivative of the wordy and more social Trails games. Which is not to say that TX is immune to criticism, just that it's part of the "Falcom games" subgenre rather than the "SMT games" subgenre.

As a Trails derivative TX is a very long game that will take 80-100 hours for a full playthrough. Much of that is text and atmosphere. If Artix wants to keep this to 40-50 hours he will have to prune like a madman.

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


NGDBSS posted:

As a Trails derivative TX is a very long game that will take 80-100 hours for a full playthrough. Much of that is text and atmosphere. If Artix wants to keep this to 40-50 hours he will have to prune like a madman.

Obviously recording will make things a bit longer but assuming the game didn't reset my clock somehow between the end and the postgame, my clock says 41:02. :shrug: In fact, that's a big part of why I picked it compared to some of Falcom's other stuff, it's standalone and not a horrifying monster of a game (Looking squarely at you, Cold Steel 4 :shepface:)

E: For reference my times for Cold Steel 3 and 4 were both in the 60-70 hour range. Cold Steel 4 might have been closer to 75, now that I think about it.

Artix fucked around with this message at 02:11 on Apr 6, 2021

NGDBSS
Dec 30, 2009








Artix posted:

Obviously recording will make things a bit longer but assuming the game didn't reset my clock somehow between the end and the postgame, my clock says 41:02. :shrug:
You must have skipped a lot of the nonessential dialogue, then. My clear times for NG and NG+ respectively are 96:37 and 177:13.

AweStriker
Oct 6, 2014



That sword and its extra-huge ring around the grip... are we sure Soul Devices aren't just Keyblades?

Rockstar Massacre
Mar 2, 2009

i only have a crazy life
because i make risky decisions
from a position of
unreasonable self-confidence


NGDBSS posted:

You must have skipped a lot of the nonessential dialogue, then. My clear times for NG and NG+ respectively are 96:37 and 177:13.

how the gently caress

i dragged my feet and barely cracked 60. i think I left the game on while I napped, once

Weeble
Feb 26, 2016


I keep having to catch myself (nearly) every time the camera focuses on Kou.

"No brain, that's not Rean. Stop it."

Black Mage Knight
Jan 25, 2012

stop biting my cape

So not gonna lie, when I played this I fast forwarded through most cutscenes to see if I could still kinda understand what was going on, so it actually will be neat to see if I had a good handle on things through this LP.

And yeah, this game was definitely a smaller experiment from the Trails team to see if they could make an action game and it shows both in just how much writing there is and that the combat, while fine, is not anywhere near as polished as what the Ys team would do.

Omobono
Feb 19, 2013

That's it! No more hiding in tomato crates! It's time to show that idiota Germany how a real nation fights!

For pasta~! CHARGE!



I'm going to defend the meltdown in Persona 5 Strikers because it was funny as gently caress and the party was deliberately fanning the flames for entertainment value.

But yeah, welcome to Trails of Persona. I hope you enjoy books and NPCs with all the backstory, and why the hell did they copy-paste tiny senpai here?
Don't get me wrong, Towa is the best, but did she fall in a dimensional warp?

NGDBSS
Dec 30, 2009








Omobono posted:

I'm going to defend the meltdown in Persona 5 Strikers because it was funny as gently caress and the party was deliberately fanning the flames for entertainment value.

But yeah, welcome to Trails of Persona. I hope you enjoy books and NPCs with all the backstory, and why the hell did they copy-paste tiny senpai here?
Don't get me wrong, Towa is the best, but did she fall in a dimensional warp?
Towa Herschel is apparently a minor crossover vortex unto herself? :shrug:
  • The protagonist of Nayuta no Kiseki, an untranslated spinoff that nobody outside Japan paid attention to, is Nayuta Herschel.
  • Towa's best weapon in Trails of Cold Steel 2 (spoiled for ongoing LP) is called "Nayuta" in the Japanese version, albeit with different kanji.
  • Here in TX we have Towa Kokonoe, of course.
  • Towa's Brave Order in Trails of Cold Steel 3 is "Kokonoe Formation" in the Japanese version.

Commander Keene
Dec 21, 2016

This avatar helped buy Lowtax a new back.




Omobono posted:

I'm going to defend the meltdown in Persona 5 Strikers because it was funny as gently caress and the party was deliberately fanning the flames for entertainment value.

But yeah, welcome to Trails of Persona. I hope you enjoy books and NPCs with all the backstory, and why the hell did they copy-paste tiny senpai here?
Don't get me wrong, Towa is the best, but did she fall in a dimensional warp?
Oh yeah, Zenkichi's reaction to the Metaverse and Morgana is great. It helps that they don't draw it out that much, but it is a fairly realistic reaction to someone having their world turned upside down like that. And his VA absolutely sells that scene, too.

Yuzu from Devil Survivor might be a better example of a more prolonged meltdown over suddenly getting your world upended on you. She spends most of the first half of the game somewhere between full-blown panic and "why ME?!"

OutofSight
May 4, 2017


Weeble posted:

I keep having to catch myself (nearly) every time the camera focuses on Kou.

"No brain, that's not Rean. Stop it."

You say this, but maybe Kou pulls out some ridiculous katana as his soul device?

Geemer
Nov 4, 2010





This looks so generic anime it hurts. Even halfway through that anime opening I could predict each of the following scenes. Every single one where a character appeared a second time, they had the weapon I expected them to have. Except for maybe hacker dude carrying a hammer instead of a wand or something.

Weeble
Feb 26, 2016


I really love Falocom's NPC based world building.

Yes, I AM one of the people who was crazy enough to go around and talk to all the NPCs after every bit of plot in the Cold Steel games.

EDIT: Books too.
.
.
.
help me

Weeble fucked around with this message at 17:51 on Apr 6, 2021

Hwurmp
May 20, 2005

I LIKE TO MAKE VAGUE THREATS TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET BECAUSE I AM TOUGH GUY. P.S. ASK ME ABOUT THE TIME A GIRL BEAT ME UP IN GRADE SCHOOL. HER NAME WAS SUZIE SHE DREW A BIG WEINER ON MY FOREHEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Weeble posted:

I really love Falocom's NPC based world building.

Yes, I AM one of the people who was crazy enough to go around and talk to all the NPCs after every bit of plot in the Cold Steel games.

EDIT: Books too.
.
.
.
help me

you missed one in Chapter 3

AradoBalanga
Jan 3, 2013



NGDBSS posted:

Towa Herschel is apparently a minor crossover vortex unto herself? :shrug:
  • The protagonist of Nayuta no Kiseki, an untranslated spinoff that nobody outside Japan paid attention to, is Nayuta Herschel.
  • Towa's best weapon in Trails of Cold Steel 2 (spoiled for ongoing LP) is called "Nayuta" in the Japanese version, albeit with different kanji.
  • Here in TX we have Towa Kokonoe, of course.
  • Towa's Brave Order in Trails of Cold Steel 3 is "Kokonoe Formation" in the Japanese version.
So, Towa's like Anna from the Fire Emblem series, got it.

But yeah, I did follow the Trails in the Sky LPs, so...good luck cutting through all that lore/backstory/flavor text, Artix.

Solitair
Feb 18, 2014

This statement is a lie!


nine-gear crow posted:

We're all going to pronounce it Ku now for the rest of the LP.

Kweh!

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


:siren: Part 3: Doth Thou Desire the -Power-? :siren:

There's a little bit of time to kill before work, but things get cut off quickly and it's time to dive into the unknown. I'm sure that nothing will go wrong by accepting the plot fairy's deal for power.

Hwurmp
May 20, 2005

I LIKE TO MAKE VAGUE THREATS TO PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET BECAUSE I AM TOUGH GUY. P.S. ASK ME ABOUT THE TIME A GIRL BEAT ME UP IN GRADE SCHOOL. HER NAME WAS SUZIE SHE DREW A BIG WEINER ON MY FOREHEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The third trailer in Star Camera is from Xanadu Next, the Dark Souls of N-Gage games

White Coke
May 29, 2015


So a Soul Device can't form complex machines, with chemicals and moving parts, just solid metal shapes unless you're the protagonist?

Inferior
Oct 19, 2012



Well, I liked the Sonic Adventure joke, even if no one else did.

Always been curious about TX, no one seems to rate it highly, but Falcom doing urban fantasy could be fun.

NGDBSS
Dec 30, 2009








White Coke posted:

So a Soul Device can't form complex machines, with chemicals and moving parts, just solid metal shapes unless you're the protagonist?
It's more that Soul Devices only have physical form in the Eclipse. Otherwise we might have seen Asuka draw hers in the opening cutscene, either against the thugs or as soon as the Eclipse door popped up.

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

He's finally back,
to kick some tail!
And this time,
he's goin' to jail!


:siren: Part 4: A Dungeon Crawling Experience :siren:

Tokyo Xanadu's dungeons are...fine? Passable, maybe, is the right word. The combat isn't interesting enough to carry it over another 50 iterations of "This, but blue", but it's just inoffensive enough to fade into the background. They make for okay optimization puzzles, I suppose, but that's about all I can really say.

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Admiral H. Curtiss
May 11, 2010

I think there are a bunch of people who can create trailing images. I know some who could do this as if they were just going out for a stroll.


I'm still baffled they went with Spirit, Shadow, and Steel in the localization. Just make it Dark and Metal, guys!

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