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Shining Series:

 1 ABC Delete, Wed, 16th May '12 1:19:25 AM from Lost in Bat Country
Scientist, writer
This thread is for discussion of the ''Shining'' series games. All of them.

I just recently stumbled across the Shining series of games while looking for new and more challenging games to play.

I only have Shining Force: Resurrection of the Dark Dragon and Shining Soul I for my Gameboy Advance, but I've fallen completely in love with them.

I'm currently finishing up the first part of Shining Soul: Resurrection... as I write this. I have not enjoyed a game this much in a very long time. I love that each part of the series is different, and I find myself diving headfirst into their fictional worlds. The game's script is well-written, the plot is engaging, and like in the Fire Emblem Series each character is unique, with their own speech patterns and reactions to the events of the games. For me, that has been the most fun part of this game: all the citizens of each place, town, or even an entire country react to what's going on around them, they are not simply passive and oblivious.

That right there is enough to have me hooked on the apparently old Shining games.

I'll be the first to say that I'm bored with many of the popular RP Gs that seemingly flooded both the handheld and console game markets over the past decade. Most of them followed similar plotlines, had archetypes in costumes instead of real characters, and have similar styles of gameplay. That was when I realiezed my days of Complacent Gaming Syndrome were officially over.

I feel that the Shining series, as a whole, is different, varied, and after a while, it doesn't feel like a videogame anymore. It feels like a damn good story, like it comes from a novel. But maybe that's just me being idealistic and getting carried away again.

Does anybody have a favorite game or character from the series?

My favorite character would have to be Max.

Discuss anything you want to about the series. Discussion is good, no? So let's have some fun!
"It is good to have an end to journey toward, but it is the journey that matters in the end."

~Ernest Hemingway (American author)
 2 Harpsichord, Wed, 16th May '12 7:46:53 AM from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
...?
Shining Force I and II are two of my favorite games. They literally introduced me to the fantasy genre as a whole. Not only in games, but as a whole. The reason why I'm such a fan of fantasy literature (especially Tolkien) can be traced back to those two games... Unfortunately, I've never played the other games of the series. Any suggestions?
"Among twenty snowy mountains,/ The only moving thing/ Was the eye of the blackbird" - Wallace Stevens
Shining force 1 was the first SRPG I ever played. It and SF 2 are some of my favorite games of all time. Favorite character? In SF 1 it was Domingo(guy was like a flying magical TANK) and in 2 it was probably Slade.

BTW, Lemon's "Groovy" in the climax of 2 made me laugh so much the first time I saw it. Way to narm up an epic moment lol.

edited 16th May '12 2:09:03 PM by VertigoHigh

 4 Willy Four Eyes, Wed, 16th May '12 6:01:09 PM from Darby, PA, USA Relationship Status: It's not my fault I'm not popular!
I've got a HUGE gun!
Shining Force CD (the Enhanced Remake of the Shining Force Gaiden games on Game Gear) is supposed to be pretty good.
 5 nomuru2d, Thu, 24th May '12 11:08:50 PM from Back in Inkster, MI Relationship Status: Longing for Dulcinea
Gamer-turning-maker
The only one I own (and by extension, the only one I've beaten) was Shining Force Neo.

God, that voice acting... XDDDDDD
Long live Cinematech.

FC:0259-0435-4987
 6 Moe Dantes, Fri, 25th May '12 9:47:08 PM from the Land of Classics
cuter, cuddlier Edmond
Let's see, I own:

  • Shining in the Darkness (complete and in box for the win!
  • Shining Force (cart only sadly)
  • and Shining Force II (again, only the cart)

All for the Sega Genesis.

The Force games are pretty much the standard by which I compare all other strategy-RP Gs. Last year, I finally beat the first game and loved every second of doing so. Although at times the plot kind of lost me (I later learned this was because some things were dropped in the localization). Unfortunately I haven't played far into the second game yet... just enough to know I love its soundtrack. I must hum the overworld theme now.

in the Darkness is a game I sometimes love, but usually get bored of before I complete it. As far as Dungeon Crawlers go, it isn't exactly Wizardry, but it gets the job done. Sometime soon I need to complete it.

Oh by the way, not long ago I found this article which is an interview with Shining's creator. He reveals a lot of interesting things (and flat-out denies being inspired by Fire Emblem, which he apparently dislikes with a passion). It's a good read.
 7 nomuru2d, Fri, 25th May '12 9:50:49 PM from Back in Inkster, MI Relationship Status: Longing for Dulcinea
Gamer-turning-maker
Yeah, I don't see a connection to Fire Emblem aside from similar themed settings. For one, characters don't permanently die in Shining Force, and Fire Emblem is much more unforgiving and difficult in comparison.
Long live Cinematech.

FC:0259-0435-4987
 8 Enzeru, Fri, 25th May '12 9:56:51 PM from Orlando, FL ¬ôχಠ♥¯
icon by implodingoracle
I want the one with Rouen. Or one with a bear.

I only played FE 7(the first one on the GBA, which was excellent), aside from the permanant loss thing SF 2 was harder for me the first time, since it doesn't show you the enemies' movement range like FE does. SF 1's bosses were extremely annoying due to their health regeneration and absurdly high dodge rates. I remember the first time I fought Mikshella I had guntz, Ken, Pelle, and Mae all attacking her, finally got her down to like 6 health after what seemed like forever, and then they kept missing so much she recovered all her health back. I was so mad.

Shining in the Darkness I was doing well in but then I stopped playing(mistake) and I had a lot of trouble getting back into it since I couldn't remember where to go. It's probably the first RPG I ever played(when I was little, I had no idea what I was doing but loved the characters/music).

It's hard though. Kaiser crab DESTROYED me the first time I fought him. And those freakin seahorses. Also, woe is me...thinking back the game had some pretty memorable moments lol. I think the initial wall where you're just alone is a big wall to climb over though.

SF 2 had some amazing music. This one is my favorite

 10 Moe Dantes, Sat, 26th May '12 10:29:03 PM from the Land of Classics
cuter, cuddlier Edmond
I think the trick with battles like Mikshella is to get them down to where their weak, then blast them with all the magic you've got.

That's primarily what I did—I only used magic if it was a confirmed kill, or if I knew my fighters were gonna mop up.

I have never, ever played a Fire Emblem game. If the first one is available in English as a repro cart (I'm not gonna start with a remake or sequel) then I'll give it a go.

edited 26th May '12 10:29:59 PM by MoeDantes

 11 Jaryl, Sun, 27th May '12 1:29:57 PM from Austria Relationship Status: I know
[up] Well, just to be said, the very first Fire Emblem-game was very basic. The first one which did came out in the west (which would be the seventh entry in the overal series) would be a better entry-point, as they don't demand any previous knowledge of the series, so I guess this would be fine. Well, that aside, it's ultimately your decision.

Concerning the Shining-series, the very first game I've played was Shining Soul II. Even though its regarded as inferior to Shining Force 1 and 2, I really like it. Plus, the possibility to run around as either a wolf- or dragonman (who're awfully underrepresentated in my opinion) was awesome in my book. Also, the Regen-ability of the Brawler/Archer-classes is very much a Game Breaker if mastered. Makes it not that necessary to carry around many healing items, since you'll get your HP back in just a few moments. SP aren't that big of a deal either if you've got your hands on one of those Soul-weapons, which recover your SP with every hit you can inflict on your enemy.

edited 28th May '12 2:39:42 AM by Jaryl

 12 Moe Dantes, Sun, 27th May '12 6:16:09 PM from the Land of Classics
cuter, cuddlier Edmond
the very first game I've played was Shining Soul II. Even though its regarded as inferior to Shining Soul 1 and 2

Shining Soul II is inferior to itself?
Darkness and Disgrace
Heck, I've never heard anyone claim 2 was inferior to 1 before. Having played them both, the second is the kind of sequel that makes the first feel like a demo.

A shame the series has become kind of...otaku-centric.
Save a webcomic, read Commander Kitty! "You got your head all tangled up, but if I could only make you care..."
 14 Jaryl, Mon, 28th May '12 2:40:43 AM from Austria Relationship Status: I know
[up][up] Dang it, should've checked that before I clicked on "send" >.< I meant Shining Force...

[up] That was an error of mine, I meant the first two Shining Force-games ^^" The second Soul-game is indeed superior to the first one, I just made a snafu.

edited 28th May '12 2:41:27 AM by Jaryl

 15 Enzeru, Mon, 28th May '12 7:49:52 AM from Orlando, FL ¬ôχಠ♥¯
icon by implodingoracle
That oversight was funny enough to be print-screened and faved.

Btw which game is Rouen in?

 16 Jaryl, Mon, 28th May '12 8:55:43 AM from Austria Relationship Status: I know
[up] Heh, yeah. XD Rouen's game was Shining Wind, but No Export for You reared its ugly head for this one. Well, at least we got Shining Tears with Volg (another wolfman) and Shining Soul II with Zachs (too a wolfman), but those two aren't nearly as wellknown as Rouen. A shame, though, since they're awesome.
 17 Chris X, Wed, 18th Jul '12 2:38:13 AM Relationship Status: Singularity
FOOL!
I got Shining Tears, and well... made a page for it too.

Though as much as I like Big, Badass Wolf stuffs like Volg, I end up underusing him. And despite my likings for long haired girls, I also sorta underused Elwyn and Ryuna.

Mostly in favor of Blanc Neige. Not just in looks and personality, but also her game capabilities (Wall of Ice, especially)

By far, she's one of my favorite characters. And while you probably knew her to be voiced by Ayako Kawasumi in the anime, in the original Japanese of Tears, she's actually voiced by none other than Megumi Hayashibara. Yeah, that surprised me for a bit.

Her story IS sort of a cliche Defrosting Ice Queen scenario, but I like that.

edited 18th Jul '12 2:40:04 AM by ChrisX

You have to get to the bottom of this, or else everything will be over before you come to terms to it.
 18 Jaryl, Wed, 18th Jul '12 3:46:06 AM from Austria Relationship Status: I know
I wonder when Sega will go back to making a title in the series, because it has been pretty long since the last game. :/ I'd like a new entry to Shining Soul, preferably for the 3DS, because I had much more fun with that one instead of the SRPG-titles. Also, they could take some ideas from Heroes Of Ruin (which is also on the 3DS and plays pretty similar, only slower and admittedly kinda boring to look at), like the online-multiplayer, more sidequests and a better character-editor, and make something very enjoyable out of that. And when the graphics are colorful and nice to look at and when you can get to play as an anthropomorphic wolf or dragon again, I would buy that one in an instant.
True story:

When I first played Shining Force II, I didn't know how to use the Caravan (because I didn't have a manual—it was a rental game). For the longest time I was stuck with the original twelve and Elric. (During the miniature town section in Creed's manor, I swapped out Kiwi for him). I discovered how to use the Caravan ON ACCIDENT.

The result was that I had a team full of underleveled and underperforming characters (Sarah, Luke and Slade especially. In my first playthrough, I didn't even KNOW that Slade was a ninja). I finally discovered how to use the Caravan on accident and by that time, my sideline characters were pathetic weaklings too.

Another funny story: Sarah was promoted extremely late in the game. (I didn't know about the heal exploit, either). When I promoted her to Master Monk, by the end of the game, she was one of the heaviest hitters. A testament to how broken that class is considering she had a fifteen level deficit.

 20 Moe Dantes, Thu, 19th Jul '12 12:48:03 AM from the Land of Classics
cuter, cuddlier Edmond
I beat Shining Force I for the first time last year... and only then did I learn about the whole "wait until they're level 20 before promoting them" thing.

So many things you don't know on your first playthru. But at least I could still beat the game.
I'm an Irene!
My personal favorites are Shining Force 1, 2, and Shining Soul. I don't have Shining Soul II, but the first game is just so addictively crappy is feels good. XD

Yay for having the 360 Sonic's Genesis Collection and all the original copies. I'm still missing Shining in the Darkness and Shining CD as well.(albeit, I wanted translated versions of all 3. I don't know the games well enough to read it in Japanese)
 22 Enzeru, Thu, 19th Jul '12 6:10:16 AM from Orlando, FL ¬ôχಠ♥¯
icon by implodingoracle
I wish either the anime or game version of Wind came over. DAT ROUEN

I remember how much I hated Arthur first coupe of playthroughs. Then one time I decided to use him for real, and he was a monster.

I never found the master monk class that broken since their defenses are meh. Kanna herself is ridiculous though, yeah. Her and Peter are the two most OP characters in the game IMO.

 24 Ikiniks, Thu, 19th Jul '12 12:24:52 PM from ANTARCTICA
Hello.
The Shining Force games are among my favorites.

There are things that I prefer over the other in 1 and 2:
  • I feel that 1 had better battle sprite animation. The spells in 2 were very nice though.
  • I like the sprite's coloring in 2, but I sorta prefer the character designs in 1.
  • Promotion Branching is definitely a plus for 2.
  • 1's plot was a little bit less cliché.

I have a question though: Is there any other game in the franchise where if the leader lands the final blow on the final boss, they get a different animation? So far as I know, Shining Force 1 is the only one that does this.
I reserve the choice to not be COHERENT!
Shining Force I actually tracked promotions better than II. What do I mean?

[*] In I, if you grind (emphasis on grind) your character to Level >10 before promoting him, once he's promoted, earning levels is still a grind. In II, if you grind your character to Level >20 and then promote him, the game will think that he's a level 1 (or a level 21) and he'll earn levels much faster than his peers. [*] Spell attainment in both games is based on TOTAL level. II is wonky about what "total" level is because at promotion, you keep your stats but it assumes you were level 20 when you were promoted. For example, Tyrin (in II) learns Freeze 4 at level 38. If I promote him at level 30, he won't learn that spell at level 8 promoted but at level 18 promoted. SF I doesn't have this problem.

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