Star Ocean: The Divine Force

released on Oct 27, 2022

Star Ocean: The Divine Force is the next installment in the Star Ocean series. The game features a story that blends sci-fi and fantasy, a rich lineup of characters and side stories, a battle system delivering exhilarating combat with easy controls, and more. The “Double Hero” system returns in which the story spanning the stars and beyond will unfold from the perspective of each protagonist, one from an advanced civilization (sci-fi) and the other from an underdeveloped planet (fantasy). Events that unfold throughout the story as well as the ally characters you end up with will differ based on the protagonist the player chooses.

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I wanted to enjoy this game, but the AP system was the biggest turn off. What kind of JRPG quickly limits the amount of times you can perform BASIC ATTACKS???

Bom jogo, do começo até quase o fim.

Alma de jogo de ps2, charmoso, bom sistema de batalha e, em geral, com um ritmo ótimo.

Infelizmente, o final do jogo quebra interrompe o fluxo, tanto na narrativa quanto no design das dungeons. Não é o suficiente para invalidar o resto da experiência de jogo, mas quase desisti no fim.

First Star Ocean I have ever played. Finished a single playthrough with Raymond with no post-game done aside from farming for ultimate armors/weapons at the end.

I'm not really a fan of combat systems that use a single Action Point resource for all attacks/actions, specially when you are forced to wait in the middle of battle for it to recharge. Luckily this is not that big of an issue thanks to the ambush mechanic that allows you increase your AP bar before and during battle. I quickly set into one combo that I basically used during most of the game. Personally didn't have an issue repeating the same button combination 90% of the game but I think is something it needs to be mentioned.

Really liked that the EXP is shared between all party members, even if they aren't one of the four active ones. If you keep an eye on upgrading the equipment of your reserve members, you shouldn't have an issue when you inevitably unbench them. The difficulty curve was fine most of the time, only had issues with some bosses were I had no trouble with the dungeon but the boss at the end just straight up wiped the floor with me. Learned the hard way to have a save just before the boss encounter to be able to exit the fight without lossing the progress done during the dungeon.

The story is just serviceable. It showed some promise of adressing the issues of "futuristic" characters influencing the medieval characters during the first act, but I feel this was left aside at around the second half of the story. Not really a fan of how the Private Action scenes are handled, felt like you had to backtrack to previous locations after each story beat to see all of the conversations with your party.

My biggest issue is the heavy reliance the game has on RNG. Just straight up ignored most side quests that required gathering items from monsters, since I was burned up pretty early by some bad luck when farming item drops.
The crafting system also leaves you at the mercy of the RNG, but I guess its the price to pay to being able to just plow through the game with OP weapons and armors as soon as you unlock the smithing/crafting abilities.

I played on Xbox One in performance mode, they aren't kidding when they say that the resolution will be sacrificed since the game was a blurry mess. The issue is that the framerate still drops a lot both during combat with lots of enemies or effects, and during exploration in a couple of areas. Only had two crashes during all my playtime, both during boss fights which forced me to restart the encounters in both cases.

This is a "7/10" game in the most complimentary of ways. If other platforms can handle the game on a stable framerate and/or less blurriness I could increase the score to an 8, so looking forward to revisit the game on PC and hope the technical issues aren't as noticeable.

Considering that Star Ocean V might genuinely be one of the worst games I've played within the last few years, I was pleasently surprised to see that Star Ocean VI was significantly better. That's not to say that this game is great, it's just not bad either -- it's comfortably... decent.

The game's combat is really strong and feels great. Building combos is a lot of fun, especially when you're working out how to chain certain moves together. Combat, however, does get dry by the game's end since you'll have unlocked your entire moveset by the halfway point.

The story here is plodding. It never really hits any particular highs and the characters are fairly "functional" with very little depth. They work well together and their interactions are charming but the party isn't a particularly memorable bunch unfortunately. The story also takes a long time to actually get going and when it does it settles into, again, just being very "okay".

Visuals are really nice until you need to look at a character's face, which are doll-like and so expressionless that the disconnect between the (actually pretty good) voice work and the character faces is genuinely really uncanny. Music is fine, just typical Motoi Sakuraba stuff, nothing you're going to remember once the credits roll.

In short this game is very much "okay" like if you can grab it for dirt cheap or something then give it a whirl. You're unlikely to find much of note here, but it might be, if nothing else, a nice thing to play between other games you care about. If nothing else if Star Ocean VII is an improvement over this one, then we could have something good on our hands.

I really wanted to like this game. I gave it as many chances as I could thinking maybe something would clock for me later on but it just never did. The characters are flat, the story is middling, and while the combat is somewhat fun it's not enough the salvage the game as a whole. Overall it's....okay, but not good enough to keep my attention.