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I confess, I can be a seriously nostalgic individual, we all get that way to some extent through the various phases in our lives, and I think your twenties is a common/flexible time in which a nostalgic period can occur. You’ve just left your childhood behind, some of us are moving on to adulthood others will remain behind a bit longer. As life gets serious you long for the more carefree days of childhood and the stuff that made it cool.

I hit that nostalgia point starting a couple months back and was longing mostly for the old video games that defined my childhood, as an added bonus is those games were a lot better at least through hindsight then  most of the games I’ve played recently. So I decided to use some of that adult money I have now and get the games I used to love. My original plan was to get a Nintendo 64 and the collection of games I wanted.

As I was shopping around on Amazon I figured out that I could get the Legend of Zelda games (Orcarina of Time and Majora’s Mask of course) on GameCube and I could get a GameCube with all the stuff I would want for it would only cost me $12-18 as opposed to $40 or so I believe for an N64 with out some of the stuff I’d need to be able to play.  The games would still be expensive but the newer system would probably better/easier to use over all.  I found a copy of the Legend of Zelda promo disk that Nintendo put out, it was a short run and printed only for a promotion of a special game cube I believe so I expected to pay some cash for that, and was not let down. $40 for that particular disk. I was also a huge fan of the Rogue Squadron games as a kid and got both of those for about $5 apiece, rounding out the initial purchase with Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess for around $20. All told about $120 with shipping, the price of two new Xbox games, not bad at all.

Round two had me seeking out pretty much the last of the games from that area I really “had” to have, past these it would have been no big deal if I acquired no more game cube games. Little did I know that these two games which I spent insane amounts of time on now cost a fortune. The first “Skies of Arcadia: Legends” which introduced me to Air Piracy as a potential profession and was one of the first JRPGs I ever played, then Tales of Symphonia which was the LAST JRPG I ever played through outside of a handheld for a grand total of two. Skies cost me about $49 for a good copy with the case and everything and Tales cost me about $25, apparently both games were rather limited printings and are now rather rare. Total cost for nostalgia: $200 roughly. (three new Xbox 360/PS3 games)

Back to the games, I just can’t get in to JRPGs like some people can, one did come up recently that I would have given a shot but it was a PS3 exclusive and I’m spacing the title at the moment. (Edit: it was Valkyria Chronicles) Just to ward of the haters, yes I have played several Final Fantasy games, I didn’t like them terribly much. If I want to watch a movie I will, if I want to play a game I want to play a GAME. However Skies of Arcadia: Legends and Tales of Symphonia had rich entertaining characters and fun story lines that I wanted to keep playing, the combat didn’t feel as grinding as it did in other JRPGs because I truly was in to and enjoying the story.

I could honestly make this love letter to these two games go on for a looooong time so I will get some criticism out of the way so I can pretend this is actually a review. Both games are trope heavy as hell, the standard party make up, elemental temples, magical girl with the power to save the world, all of that and more is there in both games but goddamnit they execute it so well I can’t help but not care that it’s been done in literally every JRPG ever made for the most part.  See? I can’t even criticize these games, I’m going to quit before I become even more of a fanboy.

Trailers:

Edit: At the risk of continuing to sound like an incredible fan boy, which being honest with myself I am, someone just told me there’s a Tales of Symphonia OVA must acquire NOW!

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