Star Ocean: The Divine Force Review

Don't get ahead of yourself Ray all Right Captain Seriously something's up today I can Feel it six years after Star Ocean Integrity and faithlessness disappointed Fans of the Sci-Fi jrpg series Star Ocean the Divine Force feels like a Long-awaited return to form in many ways It's revamped combat is a lot of fun Breathing fresh life into a system that Certainly benefits by evolving with the Times a bit other areas do stagnate Unfortunately like it's Blacklist or Visuals and horrid user interface but a Respectable Story full of likable Characters makes this a sequel that's Still fun to have sailed through the Stars of if you fly high enough you can Cross the sky and reach other worlds Like the stars which star do you call Home The Divine force is a standalone story That follows a reasonable young space Merchant with a really bad haircut named Rey who crash lands on the Underdeveloped medieval-like planet of Aster 4. there he meets Leticia the prim And proper princess of the kingdom of Osarius and agrees to assist her in Fending off a nearby Empire in return For help finding his missing crewmates It's entertaining that the story kicks Off at a smaller scale than you might Expect from a space-faring adventure but

Things only grow impressively from there As conflicts on this Backwater Planet End up having astronomical consequences One cool twist is that you're actually Given the choice between following Rey Or Leticia as your main character you'll Be able to follow the overall story just Fine either way but there are a handful Of instances where they split up and you Only see what happens with the side you Picked for example if you pick Rey's Path at one point there is talk about an Arranged marriage between two Nations That you'll have no context for however If you pick Leticia instead you may Understand that conversation but Potentially miss something else it's an Interesting storytelling mechanic that Encourages you to go for a second Playthrough of the roughly 30 to 40 hour Campaign though it's not enough to make Up for a new game plus option in terms Of diving back in right away Incoming long-range Subspace Transmission from Antonio Lawrence The Divine forces cast of characters is a Lively bunch that consists of both Aster 4 locals and people from off Planet the Dynamic between your main party is Especially fascinating because half of Them come from a civilization that Hasn't even discovered the concept of Gravity yet while the other half is Casually familiar with warp drive

Engines that allow spaceships to travel Light years that results in plenty of Entertaining and unexpected moments like When Rey's robotic but surprisingly Carrying first Commander Elena has to Teach her comrades about the concept of Bacteria you can also learn more about Each character through private actions Which are cute cutscene moments that you Trigger by talking to your party members While they are scattered around the World's various towns private actions Show off a lot of a character's Personalities and quirks giving them Opportunities to talk about more than Just the events of the main story the Issue with private actions however is That they're very annoying to find just Like in past games private actions are Pretty well hidden and you have to go Out of your way to sniff them out with No icons or indications to tell you when A new one has popped it sucks to waste So much time fast traveling to other Towns running around them and talking to All of your party members in the hopes Of triggering a private action it's also Disappointing that 3D character Animations and faces don't live up to The otherwise lovely environment you Find them in characters have this Doll-like porcelain look to their Expressions that always come off a Little unintentionally creepy

Star Ocean's previous battle system has Received almost a complete overhaul and It's one that's worked out for the Better the Divine Force lets you assign Up to three combat skills to each face Button in sequential order and pressing A button three times during a fight will Have you carry out all three of those Moves in the order that you listed them This new system feels much more flexible And smooth especially compared to pass Games capacity point system which often Had you spamming the same two to four Skills during fights that problem is Completely gone here and the large Selection of different combat abilities That you can equip keep battles from Ever feeling stale it's also helped by An excellent soundtrack with the Electric guitars of Rey's Battle Theme Making fights even more exhilarating but The real game changer is the Duma system Named after the party's robot companion With Duma the party member you are Controlling will be able to rush an Enemy down and close the gap between Them at high speed you can even change Directions while rushing and if you turn Away from the target's eyesight you'll Activate a Blind Side blind sides are as Powerful as they are fun momentarily Paralyzing enemies and allowing your Entire party to wail on them and while Duma adds a ton of adrenaline and

Momentum to combat it can also be used Defensively for example you can exchange Your ability to rush to instead allow Duma to reduce the amount of damage your Party takes being able to switch between Modes on the fly like this makes battles More Dynamic and exciting It's before us Duma also plays a role outside of combat Used as a sort of jet pack to help you Scale buildings in town or up mountains In the wild you might find hidden purple Gems while doing so which are amusing Collectibles to hunt down that help Level up Dumas different abilities this Semi-open world exploration feels Natural while flying around but the Landscapes are also somewhat empty and Lacking in personality the vast Environments have lots of Wide Open Fields but they seem large only for the Sake of being large without many Discernible landmarks the environments And skyboxes can at least look beautiful But the layouts of each area aren't on Par with what a game like the impressive Xenoblade Chronicles 3 showed off on the Switch earlier this year menus aren't Pleasing to look at either in the party Member screen you're greeted by these Boring black boxes with each character's Mediocre 3D model displayed prominently But the worst offender when it comes to Menus is actually actually the font size

It might be one of the smallest fonts You'll ever have to read in a game in Recent memory and there's no option to Increase it hopefully Square Enix Addresses this issue in a post-launch Patch because it's genuinely distracting And not even having the most basic Accommodations for accessibility is Unacceptable that said the UI issues Aren't so bad that you'll be deterred From optimizing your party's gear for The post-credits content that the Star Ocean games are known for each character Has a specific item creation Talent like Rey's natural affinity for smithering to Create weapons and leticia's compounding Skills to make medicine the process is Straightforward and easy to understand For example combining two blueberries Makes a blueberry potion which prevents Progression from feeling like a chore It's not crucial to make the most of This crafting during the regular Campaign but you'll have to spend time Mastering the system if you want to be Properly prepared for the hardest fights That the Divine Force has to offer Star Ocean the Divine Force isn't Necessarily a standout in this Long-running series but it is a much More successful effort to bring Star Ocean into the Modern Age the revamp Battle mechanics do wonders for its Previously limited combat system

Offering more freedom and flexibility Than ever before the main cast of Characters is also Charming even if the World they are exploring and the Animations that accompany them are far Less captivating its interface issues Are obnoxious but even so the Divine Force at least proves that square enix's Sci-fi jrpg certainly deserved another Shot for more check out our reviews of Valkyrie Elysium and the deal field Chronicles and for everything else stick With IGN Acceleration sorry loser It is that hunger That bottomless greed that drives them And they will not rest until they have Claimed every last star in the sky

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