Sunday, 21 April 2013

Grandia ReDux Complete #1: Equipment

As it currently stands, equipment are decently varied and have a straight-forward rate of progression. Correct? The problem however is that many equipment categories are fairly homogenised and don’t realistically offer options to the player other than what is obviously the best things to equip. Character customisation was a bit lacking too, you see Justin itemize into a physical attacker along with Rapp, with Feena and Liete shoehorned into Magic (although Feena did have Whips that increased skill power and attack – they were just inferior to magic options).

So what’s the solution? Simply put, equipment follows a more choice-related pattern especially concerning the secondary slots. Weapons and body armor still follow general progression with different types but still offer more options. Secondary equipment slots will now have more than one defined type that offers entirely different niches. 

To begin with, the shield slot has now has been changed to ‘Offhand’ and shields are actually a sub-type of the offhand slot. Here is a list of different types of equipment now belonging to the offhand slot:
  • Shield - Negates damage below a certain value [BLOCK] (Justin/Gadwin/Rapp/Milda/Liete)
  • Buckler - Chance to reflect damage taken [COUNTER] (Justin/Sue/Feena/Rapp/Guido/Milda)
  • Orb - Increased spell potency [MAGIC+] (Justin/Sue/Feena/Gadwin/Rapp/Liete)
  • Focus - Increased spell haste [SPELL HASTE] (Justin/Sue/Feena/Gadwin/Rapp/Liete)
  • Gloves - Lower SP costs [PSYCHE] (Sue/Feena/Gadwin/Milda/Guido/Liete)  
  • Spear -  Increased skill power [SKILL+] (Sue/Feena/Gadwin/Rapp/Milda/Guido)
Essentially, there are five catagories that can be equipped by certain characters. All in all, this adds varying factors of customizability. It's worth mentioning that each type has their own parameters that they focus on. For example, gloves increase attack and movement, meaning that Feena can specialize in physcial attacks if you choose so.

Then we have the weapons which are also further broken up into catagories:
  • Standard Sword - Increased SP gain on attacks [FURY] (Justin/Rapp/Guido)
  • Greatsword - IP knockback when attacking [MIGHT] (Justin/Gadwin/Milda)
  • Axe - Chance to reduce defense on attacks [BREAK] (Justin/Milda)
  • Mace - Increased skill power [SKILL+] (Justin/Liete)
  • Staff - Increased spell potency [MAGIC+] (Justin/Sue/Liete)
  • Hammer - Chance to stun on attacks [HEAVY BLOW] (Sue/Milda)
  • Whip - Chance to bind on attacks [BINDING] (Feena)
  • Dagger -  Extra combo hit [COMBO+] (Feena/Rapp/Guido)
  • Runikard - Increased Spell Haste [SPELL HASTE] (Feena/Rapp)
  • Bow - Increased Range [RANGE+] (Sue/Guido)
  • Darts/Shuriken - Extra critical hit [CRITICAL+] (Sue/Rapp)
  • Boomerang - Three extra combo hits for reduced attack [VOLLEY] (Sue/Rapp/Guido)
Of course, there are still only six global weapon types; Sword,  Axe, Blunt, Ranged, Whip and Knife -- and as you can see, character weapon types are very similar. However, the subtypes for each weapon type all contain a niche. Normal attacks and criticals will serve a much bigger purpose in ReDux Complete (you'll find out why in another post) so effects that enhance them are that much more important. Stats are also widely varied. Most of them will increase your attack (which are decently varied) but other stats are increased or decreased based on type. Bows, Greatswords and Hammers for example are all powerful, but decrease your movement (which is a much more scarse stat in Complete) in return.

Another catagory to look at is head specific equipment. These are also broken up into varying catagories:
  • Helmet - Reduces IP knockback [STURDY] (Justin/Gadwin/Rapp/Milda)
  • Hair/Ribbon - Increased SP gain upon being attacked [TEMPER] (Sue/Feena/Liete/Milda/Guido)
  • Hat - Chance to warp from attacks [LUCKY] (Justin/Sue/Rapp/Guido/Liete)
  • Crown - Restores health over time [REGEN] (Justin/Feena/Gadwin/Rapp/Guido)
Again, this follows the same ideology that the offhand slot has. Each type has its own effect and a different set of stats. That said, the other two slots are entirely stat based and have their own effects individually, either rarer or common. Here are both the body and feet equipment slots:
  • Armor - Provides high defense but lowers movement (Justin/Gadwin/Rapp/Milda)
  • Clothes - Average defense (Justin/Sue/Feena/Rapp/Milda/Guido)
  • Robe/Veil - Low defense but increases resistances (Sue/Feena/Guido/Liete)
  • Shoes - High movement (Justin/Sue/Gadwin/Rapp/Guido)
  • Boots - Average movement and provides defense (Feena/Gadwin/Milda/Guido)
  • Hi-Heels - Low movement but provides other properties (Sue/Feena/Milda/Liete)
These equipment slots are more simplistic but are still defined. Options are avaliable for most characters overall. What's important to note is that choices are dependant on what statistics they can natually increase. For example, Feena naturally has low defense growth, but being able to equip boots can offset that.

That about sums it all up. Equipment overall should provide more impactful choices overall and help customize characters a bit more!


Ah yes, since we're on the topic of equipment, I should mention that movement is far more scarce than it is before. In the original game or ReDux, movement wasn't really a stat thought about much. For non-dagger users it never grew much but boots often did offset any care for it, even early game. You'll be thinking about managing it a lot more now though.

Many types of equipment (some weapons, shields, helmets, armor etc..) reduce movement as a payoff for increasing defensive stats. Remember that normal attacks are far more crucial in Complete and you'll need to make sure that the movement stat does not drop dangerously low due to equipment! Balancing your defense and movement is another challenge to uphold.   

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