June 9, 2013

Some brats have wider appeal than others.

Posted in video games tagged , , at 10:41 pm by riulyn

Right now, out of all the games I’m actively playing, only two have very central main characters in a plot-driven story. It might feel a little strange to be comparing Shadow Hearts to Tales of Graces f since pretty much everything that can be different is different between those games. But I’m going to focus on the main characters of those two games since, despite the ensemble cast, the story seems very driven and focused around the main characters Yuri and Asbel respectively. Of course, only being 12 hours and 15 hours into each game respectively, these facts could change.

So let’s talk about the similarities first. Both are not afraid to speak their mind, sometimes coming off as rather rude. Both are rather self-centered, and you feel like when they make promises to protect other people, they do it without really considering/consulting the people they are protecting. Both are rather hot-headed. Both give off a somewhat “sexist” vibe due to being more likely to protecting females because they are “weaker” but they don’t actually have a problem with females being strong.

All these similarities, however, feel rather superficial when they are well separated by differences in the delivery. Yuri’s lines are smart and humorous and in the context of overall humorous but serious at the right times conversation. Asbel’s lines, even after the prologue, are still rather basic and show off his denseness and his naivete. Asbel is supposedly 18 but you feel like he is more like 15; it doesn’t help that the most of the rest of the cast is his age or younger and lots of “yeah we need to do this” gets repeated a lot in the main dialogue (and even more in some of the skits, but many of the skits are better than the main dialogue because of Pascal. I digress…). I don’t  know Yuri’s age but he definitely captures the young adult that more of us rather be; we want to sound smart, banter with guys, enemies, hot ladies, and of course kick ass.

The fact that most of us would evaluate Yuri as a “stronger” and more “badass” character than Asbel makes a big impact on how we react to them in certain situations. I’ll try not to spoil too much by saying things that may or may not happen in the game, but this is how I’d react to the following situations.

1. When the main character is in over his head.

for Yuri – “That enemy is really smart/powerful”

for Asbel – “Asbel, you idiot”

2. When the main character managed to beat someone by rushing in

for Yuri – “Yuri’s just too badass”

for Asbel – “Wow, Asbel’s lucky”

3. When the main character starts being cautious

for Yuri – “Dude, just go kick some ass”

for Asbel – “You should have been doing this earlier”

4. When the main character is crying

for Yuri – “Let me hug you”

for Asbel – “Let me hug you”

Hahaha, tricked you for that last one! Even though I’m sure Yuri is more loved by the people who have played Shadow Hearts than Asbel is by the people who have played Tales of Graces f, I actually really like both of them. Unfortunately, some of my love for Asbel stems from Asbel being an idiot and all the skits that help to cement that he’s really a puppy. Meanwhile Yuri is just so badass. I just can’t resist 🙂


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