Hooked up the PS2 yesterday to try it. I like it so far, though the first hour or so is pretty much a cut scene. Or “RPG on rails” even, where there’s no real choice about anything. The first two hours, really. Actually, it still hasn’t opened up yet entirely, but I do get to shop a little, which is nice.
I think if they’d released it for (say) the Wii with little or no modification it’d be a contender for game of the year (and not win). If you’re into Japanese-style RPGs, it’ll be one of the best games ever.
The funny thing though is that it has game mechanics that are incomprehensible to me, and I’ve been playing games pretty much continuously since Asteroids on the Atari 2600. There were whole sections of exposition where something would be explained to me and I’d just start laughing. At one point, after an entirely nonsensical jargon-filled little speech, I had a dialogue choice between “I understand” and “Can you go over that again?”
I wanted to be able to pick “Whatever, I’ll just go look on the Internet for better documentation.”
I’m worried that my cavalier attitude will end up ruining the game for me: I’ll find some level boss two-thirds of the way in that can only be beaten if I’ve cross-fused the right trio of spirit personas or whatever. More than one game’s been tossed aside only to find out later that it’s the collectible-card mini-game I hated that could have earned the armor that lets you finish the game.