I don't what's weirder: the fact that this game exists and spawned a long running series, or the fact that the box art goes kinda hard.

This game is actually pretty good so I understand why it would confuse SMT fans.

People who say 64 is better should not be trusted.

We need more Deviantart masterpieces of Zodick the Hellhog voring the shit out of his companions.

You know what? I'm not even going to kid myself by even trying to finish this game. It's horrible, end of sentence.

The story is annoying and stupid. There's no reason to care about any of the characters because collectively, they all produce enough personality to rival a tin can. The cutscenes are laughably amateur. There are so many awkward shots and weird editing decisions that left me baffled at how the editors thought this looked passable. The music was nice but it was mixed so poorly, multiple times the music would blatantly be playing louder than the dialog. It makes me wonder if they were using the music as a crutch to sell the action going on. This game is by far one of the most poorly produced AAA games I have ever played.

Don't even get me started on the gameplay. This game is so shit that even the side quests feel like chores. There's this mechanic in the game called "collection points" where you go up to a random marked spot in the open world and collect goodies for your inventory. While the items you collect are dependent on the location of the spot, what you get is basically random so if a quest needs a specific amount of a certain item you need to farm multiple spots around the world in hopes of getting enough materials. This is as exciting as it sounds. What's even better is that the game will often halt it's story so that you can complete some arbitrary side quests to make progress. On top of not being fun, the decision just leads to awkward storytelling. Early into the game, one of the party member gets captured and the main party learns they're set to be executed. What I've described sounds tense but the information is conveyed through a side quests where you follow markers to talk to specific NPCs about the events. Was this seriously the best way to the player that one of the party members is about to die? The game's methods of combining storytelling and gameplay is also infamously bad. I'm not kidding when I say there are multiple fights in which you battle an enemy, take out all of their health, watch them die in the battle, then proceed to lose in the cutscene anyways? WHY!? It's like the developers didn't know how to blend their story and gameplay effectively. There are so many moments like this, and it's all so amateur like I said before.

Oh my gosh, I haven't even gotten into the combat yet. The combat is the opposite of fun, it's repetitive and fundamentally skill-less. The enemies and bosses in this game possess no interesting mechanics, you attack them - they attack you - and you heal when you're low on health, this goes on repeat until the bosses dies or you die. Other, better JRPGs would have more interesting or engaging mechanics to enemy and boss encounters more distinct and interesting and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 throws all of that out the window. There is no strategy or tactics used to get through encounters in this game, just throwing yourself at an enemy over and over until they miss enough attacks for you to squeeze out a victory, it's the opposite of satisfying.

This was astonishingly bad. Never did I think a big-budget AAA game could be so incompetently produced, but here I am. Please avoid this game like covid, just watch a playthrough on YouTube and question how this game has a 3.9 average rating.

The ozone layer wishes it could filter as hard as this game.

This game uhhh... exists? The soundtrack is great! The levels are boring, the bosses are boring, and the story is boring. The game in general is just really forgettable and inoffensive. I played this game like two years ago and I'm struggling to think of any aspects of it that stood out in a positive way. Granted, I knew this game was gonna suck before I played it so I wasn't disappointed or anything. It's just that Kirby: Star Allies is a nothing game.

Played this at a convention. It was pretty fun. It was very beginner friendly with it's controls and buttons while still having challenging maps and courses. It seems like there's a very high skill ceiling with the seemingly limitless content and difficulty options along with the challenge of completing every map with a 100%.

This makes curious about the Project-DIVA series as, considering the games I like, it seems right up my alley.

JRPG fans be like "this game is really good!" and it has some of the most tedious, monotonous, and poorly designed gameplay you've ever seen.

Man, You do not KNOW how much I want to love this game! It improves so much from the original Mega Man Zero while simultaneously adding so many new and creative additions! The amount of creative set pieces and memorable mechanics in this game's levels are insane! There is literally a level in this game where you are intercepting an air fleet en-route to stop a nuke from being dropped on the resistance base and the accompanying track for the level is this! While we're on the topic of music, hoo boy, the soundtrack for this game is absolutely incredible! There are so many memorable and interesting tracks that add so much to the game’s levels, and the best part was that the game kept succeeding itself! First I heard Departure and thought there was no way the rest of the game was going to top it, then I heard Sand Triangle, then I heard Gravity, then I heard Power Bom, then I heard Passionate. I think you know what I’m getting at, the soundtrack for this game is complete banger central.

From what you have read, it seems as though I loved this game. Well, that's the conundrum I found myself in. I can praise Mega Man Zero 2 all I want, I can list all the details I loved, all the creative decisions that went into the game's making; however, all of that fluff will never fix the two gigantic, fundamental problems I have with this game. The two problems are the game’s lackluster bosses and the inconsistent level design. I'll start with the bosses because their quality is by far my biggest disappointment with this game.

The bosses feel like a straight downgrade in comparison to the cast in the first game. The philosophy applied when designing the best bosses in Zero 1 is simply absent in the bosses of Zero 2. While there are plenty of duels in the game (Leviathan, Harpuia, Panter Flauclaws) similar to Zero 1, the fights never felt dynamic with how the player could create openings or push the fight in Zero’s favor. The only boss fight that approached the quality of Zero 1 was Hyleg Ourobockle. The fight was fairly unique because the stage the battle took place on was constantly changing in conjunction with Ourobockle’s own aggression. As a result, I found myself having to be light on my toes to avoid being in a bad spot for one of Ourobockle’s attacks. Additionally, the boss is designed in a way that allows the player to create and exploit openings left by the boss such as Ourobockle being vulnerable when he tries to grab Zero through the platforms. The existence of Hyleg Ourobockle frustrates me more than anything because it demonstrates that the developers could have easily replicated or innovated upon the original games design. To add insult to injury, Hyleg Ourobockle is one of the first bosses in the game, so it’s doubly disappointing knowing no boss for the rest of the game approaches its quality.

So the bosses are unimpressive, but the game at least makes up for their subpar design by having really interesting and engaging lead ups to their confrontation. It seems like every level possesses a cool mechanic or set piece that makes it memorable, for better or for worse. While there are a greater number of excellent levels in Mega Man Zero 2, the lesser levels such as the N.A train or the crystal cave do sting quite a bit. Their main problem is the amount of unintuitive enemy and hazard placement that makes the stage unfun to traverse. Without a doubt, the worst enemy in the game is the Mechaniloid that flies in and drops a spike ball on Zero. The action happens extremely quickly and Zero can’t do enough damage to the spike ball to avoid being hit. In order to avoid damage from being hit by a spike ball, Zero needs to constantly be shooting his buster forward while sparingly dashing forward. The method isn’t a terrible way to play, but if the method is the only way for a player to traverse a stage without taking damage, then there’s a problem with the level design.

Besides the few hiccups in level design, the rest of the stages are fantastic. I have already mentioned the air fleet stage, but I really love the jungle and power reactor stages as well. The jungle stages feature extensive use of the chain rod, a unique weapon specific to Zero 2 that allows Zero to hook onto walls and ceilings and pull enemies and objects toward him Scorpion style. The stages use the chain rod’s mechanics in challenging and creative ways, having Zero hook blocks into correct spots or swing from the ceiling to collect items in a satisfying way. The power reactor stage has 4 mini-boss reactors which Zero has to destroy to complete the stage. Around the halfway point, the player can take an alternate path that changes the order in which the reactors are destroyed and, as a result, make the fight with Phoenix Magnion more bearable.

There’s a lot of things to love about this game but it’s big shortcomings disappoint me. I find myself liking Zero 1 slightly more due to its superior bosses and more consistent level design despite its myriad of problems not present in Zero 2. It's a shame really because, with a few changes, Mega Man Zero 2 could easily be one of my favorites. Inti Creates has the tools and experience to create an amazing game taking the best of both MMZ 1 and 2, so I hope Mega Man Zero 3 and 4 take the series in the correct direction after this.

Edit: After playing Zero 3, let's just say I had a newfound appreciation for this game's bosses and level design. None of the bosses in this game really frustrated me but I did find them to be a step down from the original game. Additionally, I found the enemy placement to be a lot a bearable if I simply didn't move so recklessly. Although, the annoying enemy placements could still be fixed.

I've only played this game for about two hours but I'm 100% confident in this rating.

2d Mario fans arguing over whether this or 3 is better is like arguing whether you'd eat trash or garbage.

At the time of this log I am nowhere near finishing this game. I'm at the part where you have to throw mistletoe at a demon to kill it, don't worry it makes sense in game, but I still want to write down my thoughts because I find this game mildly intriguing.

My main thesis is that the story this game presents is incredibly uninteresting with the writing never going above mediocre. However, the game's mechanics and overall gameplay loop is engaging enough for me to have lukewarm feelings toward it.

I said before that the writing was subpar, so I'll start by substantiating that claim. I heard claims from various sources saying the story for this game is fantastic but from what I experienced I'm genuinely baffled how they think that. The characters all have the most played-out, predictable personalities of any cast of characters I've seen. Perhaps they will become better as I continue playing, but the game is committing so hard to having them go through the most predictable and by-the-numbers arcs imaginable that it borders on self-parody. The dialog isn't much better either, the characters all talk like they're apart of a shitty video essay analyzing the game they're currently in. Every time a character re-explained their motivation or their relationship to another character, I rolled my eyes so hard they got stuck in the back of my skull. If I have one positive thing to say about the writing, it's that the dialog scenes were much funnier when I was remembering that people think this game is a 10/10 while watching them.

Putting aside my grievances with the writing, I think the fundamental structure the game committed to is boring and dampers the effectiveness of the narrative. Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor is a game where millions of people are trapped with no hopes of getting out. To make things worse, there a dozens of demons attacking citizens and a mysterious event will happen in seven days in which everyone will die. What I just described sounds grim and awesome as fuck for a story but the game being so limited in what it can show severely hinders that potential. I get that, to an extent, the player is supposed to suspend their disbelief. However, the overall structure of the game is visually and mechanically repetitive with players constantly revisiting the same locations along with cutscenes literally consisting of two characters talking to each other behind a generic city background. I don't have any fancy words to describe this. The cutscenes are boring, as simple as that, and as a result the story is boring and the game is boring.

I would say the game is boring if the gameplay accompanying it wasn't engaging and challenging, but luckily this is one of the things SMT: Devil Survivor does right. The game still has the classic SMT charm of recruiting and fusing new demons who get progressively more powerful, it's my favorite thing about the franchise and why I'm intrigued by the games despite not being particularly impressed with them. Furthermore, Devil Survivor adopted an SRPG approach to combat rather than the traditional turn based system and I think this is an improvement. Rather than needing basic elemental knowledge and a broken buff/debuff system to win fights, the player now has to consider their approach to each enemy and how to effectively use each team member to overcome the game's numerous challenges. Whole I do have some reservations, mainly the grinding required to get certain skills on demons and characters, the gameplay is my favorite aspect of this game and it keeps the game from being hated in my book.

In Summary, I think this game is decent. While I do think the game is held back by it's subpar presentation and writing, I simply think those aspects of the game are simply subpar and not an abomination like other games I have played. Additionally, the game still has a well-designed and engaging battle system that is simply missing in a lot of JRPGs. While I don't think game is particularly great or even exceptionally good, I'll definitely finish it at some point.