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Author Topic: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?  (Read 1753 times)

Bregalad

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I mean, everyone seem to talk about Breath of Fire 2, blah blah...

Personally I find the original game is vastly superior in every way and is one of the rare cases where a game push its own sequel to shame. Only the story is more advanced in the second game - however the music and graphics and gameplay are better in the original. The battle animations in BOF2 looks cheesy and lacking, compared to those in BOF1 which are fluid.

Especially the music - BOF1 is a masterpiece, while BOF2 is very, very mediocre, especially for JRPG standards. Only one town theme, one dungeon theme, and not even good ones, very boring.

magictrufflez

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To be blunt, yes.

KingMike

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I have some fondness for the original game (since it was the first game I bought myself as a kid, even used) and I played it after I had played the sequel (since I was only able to rent the second game at many stores).
Like, I didn't play the first until at least a year and a half after I had first played the second.

But even I would still say the first is a pretty average game.
I think even Nintendo Power noted the poor distribution of magic in the first game. You don't get the primary attack magic character until like 2/3 of the way through. But if there is an elemental weakness/resistance system even in the game, it is rarely used. So there is rather little strategy. Just spam the strongest attacks and heal.
Sorry I'm going to disagree on gameplay and say the second had better variety in the characters' battle capabilities. In BoF1, isn't Gobi's magic literally useless outside the small portions of the game you are underwater?

Though surprisingly out of all the TownShip features in BoF2, not a single one was a rename feature which BoF1 had (if not until halfway through the game. Seems silly to change the earlier characters' names after you had to get used to them for half the game already)
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Bregalad

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I think even Nintendo Power noted the poor distribution of magic in the first game. You don't get the primary attack magic character until like 2/3 of the way through. But if there is an elemental weakness/resistance system even in the game, it is rarely used. So there is rather little strategy. Just spam the strongest attacks and heal
This is the case for most JRPGs of that era. Only Final Fantasy games actually forces you to use magic etc... because they are significantly more effective than physical attacks on at least a large pool of enemies.
In Breath of Fire I as well as II, magic is almost completely useless, muhc like in DQ games. If I remember well on BoF2, Nina is patheticly weak and even casting her best magic deals less damage than physical attacks from Ryu and other physical attackers of the game.

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Sorry I'm going to disagree on gameplay and say the second had better variety in the characters' battle capabilities. In BoF1, isn't Gobi's magic literally useless outside the small portions of the game you are underwater?
You don't have to be sorry for disagreeing with me, actually I knew already I am in minority for preferring Bof1 over 2. I don't remember much of Gobi's magic, for me it's not something that makes a game great or not - although it can participate.

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Though surprisingly out of all the TownShip features in BoF2, not a single one was a rename feature which BoF1 had (if not until halfway through the game. Seems silly to change the earlier characters' names after you had to get used to them for half the game already)
Part of why I don't like BoF2 is probably because I completely missed that TownShip and got the bad ending as a result -
Spoiler:
saving Ryu's father
was unthinkable at the level I was - the boss would just wipe my party if I tried.

And considering how boring BoF2 is, I'm not ready to replay it to get the good ending.

Spooniest

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You are not. I don't care for the music in BoF2 (oh boy, MIDI Metal Guitar samples everywhere), the character designs likewise fall flat with me. I've only ever played the retranslation Ryusui did, but I got up to the part where ...I dunno, the religious undertones start up or something. An avid player will recognize that point better than I would remember it. Rand's hometown?

The whole thing is like milk and water compared to BoF1, to me. I'm with ya Breg. I didn't care for 3 and I've never played any further into the series. I realize they are respected games, but the first installment was the only one that ever made me want to finish the game or get invested in the characters.


To be blunt, yes.

To be blunt, you're wrong and shouldn't have been so presumptuous! :D
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 06:06:08 am by Spooniest »

Idkbutlike2

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I don't think either SNES BoF is a masterpiece or anything, but BoF1 definitely had fewer dumb quirks than its sequels. BoF2's combat balancing is awful, the encounter rate is way too high, there's too much backtracking, building your town involves a bunch of factors that can only be known with a guide, and fast travel in the late game is abysmally slow.

Axiphel

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Both games suffer from a poor combat system. Neither really take any sort of strategy because most elemental weakness are either nonexistent or don't matter, status ailments/buffs either don't work on monsters or there's no reason to use them on the ones they do work on and dealing damage boils down to transforming into/summoning Ryu's dragon then pressing A for almost everyone and healing.

The music in 1 is definitely better to me than 2 but 2 does have some nice tracks. Graphically 1 is better than 2 and the biggest reason I say that is the battle backgrounds in 1 actually change depending on the area you got into a battle (if you're on a bridge your battle background is a bridge). These background changes seem to be absent from 2. 2 does have some cool spell animations and some of the transformations are pretty neat too (hello fire monkey genie??).

Of course the 2nd game has a superior story but I think with maybe a retranslation/text expansion the first one could be brought slightly up to par.

magictrufflez

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To be blunt, you're wrong and shouldn't have been so presumptuous! :D

I'm an adult and I can project my opinion onto others whenever I want and refuse to change my opinion in the face of any/all information!

But seriously, I believe Mike mentioned a lot of my beefs with anyone claiming 1 was better than 2.  2's gameplay is much more balanced (even if only taking endgame--the last 20% or so of 1 is a complete joke once you get Agni, whereas 2 is legit difficult even if you know how to exploit the game as much as possible), I personally like 2's music quite a bit more (even the remake of 1's world map theme is better than the original IMO), and the graphics were just overall superior in detail. And to the point about magic, I 100% disagree about the utility of magic in 1 vs 2--attack magic outside dragon spells in 1 were rarely useful once you got dragon powers, whereas physical attacks and magic are generally on par with each other in 2 until endgame (the balance only really breaks here if you know what you're doing or spam dragon magic/WiseBls). Hell, even your physical attack in 1 was obsolete from the 2nd dungeon until roughly when you get Bo by the infinite auto-30 damage per hit Quake key--and there are more than a few other simple exploits that make an already easy game even easier (don't even get me started on lvl 50 characters before you get Karn).

This isn't to say that I don't enjoy some sections of BoF 1 (some of the soundtrack is pretty good), but I just can't see any part of the game that was objectively better than the sequel. 3 is a whole different ballgame though (I'm not as big a fan as most).

Also, /endrant.

Bregalad

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You are not. I don't care for the music in BoF2 (oh boy, MIDI Metal Guitar samples everywhere), the character designs likewise fall flat with me.
Well, probably we are both very sensitive to music, and that plays a huge role why we don't enjoy BoF2 nearly as much as BoF1. The difference is really glaring, the music not only fell in quality but also in quantity with music pieces being much less varied in BoF2 than 1.

In BoF1 it's a shame they were probably limited with memory and something, but I find the music to be particularly of great quality, but it often loops too fast sadly. And that with only a single instrument set which never changes again !

but I got up to the part where ...I dunno, the religious undertones start up or something.
If you think Breath of Fire II has religious undertones, then you definitely missed a large part of the storylines and the plot twists at the end of the game.
Spoiler:
The game is actually very much anti-religious as possible, and basically the main story of the game revolves about a religion which is pure evil and where people's prayers go to make the last boss stronger. It's harder to be more anti-religious than Breath of Fire II. As a christian I was almost offended by the game's story - even though I of course fully understand it's entierely ficionnal.

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The whole thing is like milk and water compared to BoF1, to me. I'm with ya Breg. I didn't care for 3 and I've never played any further into the series. I realize they are respected games, but the first installment was the only one that ever made me want to finish the game or get invested in the characters.
Well, 3 is actually pretty good I found, especially compared to the extremely boring 2. It still have a huge balance problem like it's two predecessors (probably even worse) - Nina is completely useless in 3, and there's another very muscled character that actually does very little damage when attacking - basically Ryu is the only useful playable character and the others are barely there to heal him.

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I don't think either SNES BoF is a masterpiece or anything, but BoF1 definitely had fewer dumb quirks than its sequels. BoF2's combat balancing is awful, the encounter rate is way too high, there's too much backtracking, building your town involves a bunch of factors that can only be known with a guide, and fast travel in the late game is abysmally slow.
My point exactly - I travelled with whale only since I didn't have the town ship, ever. I didn't even guess you could have one before having access to the interenet.

By the way going inside a whale is one of the very few "cool" parts of BoF2. The other cool part is the tournament. (Or was it in BoF3 ? Or both ? I don't remember). The rest is boring, particularly the quest where you should cook insect for frogs. That part which took hours of doing something stupid getting stuck in that stupid castle with awful music. S.T.U.P.I.D.

BoF1 might have a simplistic story (it just resolves after finding a collection of keys and travelling 'round the world) but at least you visit interesting parts, desert places with arabic music, underwater village, a tower which uses mode 7 to give you the impression you are shrunk, and there is mazes and puzzles a little everywhere, plus optional chest backtracking. BoF2 have none of this, and it's a huge step backwards for the series.

For me the combat is secondary - BoF1 being too easy or whathever plays a minor role in it's enjoyment - while visiting interesting places and having good music is more interesting. BoF2 is basically a huge grindfest, especially in the last dungeon which is incredibly HUGE and BORING and HARD as well and requires hours and hours of grinding to have any chance to get to ever reach the 413th underground floor where the last boss is located.

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I 100% disagree about the utility of magic in 1 vs 2--attack magic outside dragon spells in 1 were rarely useful once you got dragon powers, whereas physical attacks and magic are generally on par with each other in 2 until endgame
Then the balance is broken, magic is supposed to be significantly more effective than physical attacks of your best attacker, because you waste MP for it ! If this is not the case, then magic is useless, and I think in Bof2 it's not completely useless (as it is in Bof3) but borderline useless.

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he balance only really breaks here if you know what you're doing or spam dragon magic/WiseBls
Dragon can't be "spammed" in Bof2 since you can only cast it once, after that Ryu has 0 MP, and only by healing his mana you can do that again, but it takes time and is weak if his MP weren't full at the time of the summon.

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Hell, even your physical attack in 1 was obsolete from the 2nd dungeon until roughly when you get Bo by the infinite auto-30 damage per hit Quake key--and there are more than a few other simple exploits that make an already easy game even easier (don't even get me started on lvl 50 characters before you get Karn).
I have no idea what you're talking about - but in all cases when I mentionned that playing BoF1 is a better experience than BoF2, I meant on a normal playthrough - without guides, cheats or anything. I didn't mean exploiting the game or whathever.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2017, 06:41:45 am by Bregalad »

thr

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BoF I is a great introductory-level RPG, with sweet music, colourful graphics and varied characters. it's certainly unpolished at the edges, and generally quite simple, but also fully manageable and fun to play from start to finish. I've successfully used it to introduce the jRPG genre to some people, and the response was universally positive.

BoF II is another thing. While the story seems more mature and touches on some deeper sentiments than its predecessor (religion is a lie), it looks like the makers were overambitious, so it's somewhat unfinished in places, or at least rushed, which becomes painfully obvious in the endgame section. the retranslation and fan patches help the matters in some respect, but it's still much more difficult, unbalanced and strange at times. also the general mood is much darker than the first. my small sample of jRPG novices were universally impressed by the intro, but then everyone gets bored or stuck at some point. I think it tells a lot about a game when the intro is its best part.

all in all, the first Breath of Fire is simply more pleasant to play, while playing no. 2 is honestly a bit of a chore. So yeah, I'd say BoF 1 is superior.

Bregalad

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2017, 02:39:48 pm »
Fully agree with that - but
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I think it tells a lot about a game when the intro is its best part.
I must admit that the intro is also the best part of BoF1, at least story-wise. Also the part where you have to rescue Ryu with Nina and her soldiers. But after that the story is extremely plain - but that doesn't matter because the game is fun.

BoF2 is definitely much darker than 1; and 3 is somewhere in the middle.

KingMike

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2017, 01:32:56 pm »
(don't even get me started on lvl 50 characters before you get Karn).
How do you get level 50 characters before Karn?
You have got to be cheating in which case you shouldn't really complain about it being too easy. :P
I assume the GBA version gave boosted EXP/coins as BoF2 did, but it can't be that much?

Level 50 would require excessive grinding by even end-game standards.
I recall that due to weird EXP growth curves (SNES BoF1 never tells you in any way how much EXP you need to level-up), ending with Nina at level 46 and Bleu at 42 is pretty normal.
Just how weird is that Bleu gains levels very fast until I think she reached 41 at 100,000, then needs 200,000 to reach level 42 and 280,000 to reach 43 (I recall getting that far, even though that EXP is beyond normal for the end game)
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Bahamut ZERO

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2017, 01:43:30 pm »
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Well, 3 is actually pretty good I found, especially compared to the extremely boring 2. It still have a huge balance problem like it's two predecessors (probably even worse) - Nina is completely useless in 3, and there's another very muscled character that actually does very little damage when attacking - basically Ryu is the only useful playable character and the others are barely there to heal him.

To a degree, the balance in 3 almost entirely revolves around which Masters you train under, or whether or not you use them at all.

Last time I played through 3 was the only time I really bothered using Masters, and by the end of the game everyone besides Momo could stomp just about every normal enemy in the game. My setup:

Ryu & Rei- The speed master at the tea house/resturant right before you get to the synthetic

Nina - That old mage dude in the forest in the first area of the world map, and then switch to the OTHER mage guy the moment you can (the mage guy that askls you to throw the match at the tournament)

Garr & Peco - Can't remember where t his one's at off the top of my head like the others above, but it's the Master that ups your Attack and Defense gains and lowers your speed gains on level. Garr's always slow as shit anyway, so it's the perfect one for him, and if you purposely keep Peco at Lvl 1 until you set him to this master, he'll become the most over-the-top fucking powerhouse in the entire game.  :woot!:

Momo - ...Fuck Momo.



Aaaaaand that's my setup.  :thumbsup:




As for 1 & 2 - I liked 1 waaay more than 2. Just enjoyed the feel of the progression more, the music was more catchy, and it felt more like you were on adventure with all the random scenarios coming out of left field.

Don't get me wrong, 2 hits some of the same points, but it feels like it takes forever to get the ball rolling, and the hill has a few more bumps on it than before. I liked the inbattle graphics a bit more and some of the battle themes were pretty badass until you heard them for the four millionth time or so. Still fun to play through, all in all.


Tbh I enjoyed the hell out of all four Breath of Fires, though I never managed to play through 4 more than once. Really wish Capcom would bring the series back as a jacked out mix of the first two games with, some of the battle mechanics of the later two.
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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2017, 10:12:53 pm »
Never played BoF1. I think I'll play it before playing 2.

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deadlyblossom

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2017, 11:48:04 am »
What about the Ryu/Nina pairing in 2?

KingMike

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2017, 01:32:51 pm »
I don't know what you are referring to.

Spoiler:
Are you talking about how Ryu and Nina in BoF1 got married in the ending, causing the BoF2 Nina to get the cursed black wings?
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magictrufflez

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #16 on: November 05, 2017, 08:56:40 am »
How do you get level 50 characters before Karn?
You have got to be cheating in which case you shouldn't really complain about it being too easy. :P
I assume the GBA version gave boosted EXP/coins as BoF2 did, but it can't be that much?

Actually, it's relatively simple to do and not cheating at all, although marginally grindy.

Because of how the XP allocation works (ie the number displayed is divided by the total number of party members you have), and 9999 is the maximum XP you can ever be allotted in 1 battle, the earliest point in the game where you can feasibly grind high levels (or at least much higher than you should be) is around Bleak when G Slimes pop up. When you reach this point, you should just have 3 heroes, making the 800XP per G Slime a pretty massive haul, and 3 G slimes will give you better XP per character at this point than almost any other random battle in the entire game (there are 2 exceptions: M Slimes, which can be difficult to spawn regularly, and one of the random battles near Scande). At a certain point you can run from everything that aren't G Slimes, streamlining the leveling process even more.

Since you have more characters later in the game, leveling up becomes much less efficient after this point unless you kill people off intentionally. Even though the grind can be long to get to lvl 50 using this method, it's mostly faster than any other method (for the Hero, Nina, and Bo at least--but especially Nina who has nerfed XP requirements until the mid 40s).

Yet another thing BoF 2 did better than 1 (IMO)--it kind of made this particular math exploit impossible.

And while I'm here:

Dragon can't be "spammed" in Bof2 since you can only cast it once, after that Ryu has 0 MP, and only by healing his mana you can do that again, but it takes time and is weak if his MP weren't full at the time of the summon.

...

I have no idea what you're talking about - but in all cases when I mentionned that playing BoF1 is a better experience than BoF2, I meant on a normal playthrough - without guides, cheats or anything. I didn't mean exploiting the game or whathever.

I'll leave most of the post alone, but yes you can spam dragon attacks as long as the hero's AP is under or around 100 and you can cook.  If you can cook, you can make tons of WiseBls, which, when used by a slower character than the hero, will allow you to use full-strength dragon summons every turn. But your point about the system is why I like it better--no 1-time MP dump for Agni and then just attack-attack-attack-cure-attack ad nauseum for literally every boss in the last 10-20% of the game. I actually have to work to make the dragon spam work in 2.

And to the 2nd point, you clearly never used the E Key you get in the 2nd dungeon in battle, because it's an automatic, 30 damage to everything on screen with unlimited uses, which isn't outclassed by much of anything until you get Bo, and after that is basically better than all Nina's attacks (and some other characters' too) until almost endgame.

Spooniest

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #17 on: November 06, 2017, 12:39:04 am »
May I add at this point, totally unrelated to anything else in the thread, a little comparison/contrast chart for you guys.

Breath of Fire 1 - = = = - Breath of Fire 2
Hero has cape.................Hero has no cape
Hero does hero                Hero gets around
stuff right away...............to it eventually
Plot is basically                Plot makes you feel
'defeat the Empire'..........bad for believing in God
Sad feels at the               Sad feels at the start
start of the game             of the game, which
and then later                  you must jump thru
again if you keep             ridiculous hoops to
playing...........................eventually resolve
Support characters           Support characters
are mostly cool af............are goofy looking
You go into a                   I dunno, God is
person's dreams              evil and screw you
to save their life..............for praying?
Bleu's neckline................Katt's lack of pants? :/
Ox punches shit..............Rand rolls in a ball??

BoF 2 has that classic '2nd installment weirdness." You can see this in the Castlevania Series, the Mario Series, Metroid, Final Fantasy, etc etc, many more. Often the designers will try to stretch their wings a little on their second outing if the first one has become a hit, and use the focus group data they collect from the experiment to make a third installment. Exceptions to this include Megaman (the 2nd installment is regarded so highly that some say it's the best game in the series), Dragon Quest (2 practically is still the template for most DQ games), and Kid Icarus (whose sequel is basically just a Gameboyified version of it).

But there is often some goofiness and stumbling in the sophomore outing of any creative work, and it is common across all mediums. Bands and Recording Artists tend to refer to it as a "Sophomore Slump."

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #18 on: November 06, 2017, 01:07:59 am »
"Makes you feel bad for believing in God" I guess if that god is sending out/turning people into demons and sucking the world's life energy you should feel bad...

Spooniest

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Re: Am I alone in thinking Breath of Fire 1 is vastly supperior to its sequel?
« Reply #19 on: November 06, 2017, 01:26:40 am »
"Makes you feel bad for believing in God" I guess if that god is sending out/turning people into demons and sucking the world's life energy you should feel bad...

That would be the Devil?

The Devil usurping God's authority and and misusing his power to victimize mortals is kind of an old story.

But I'm fully prepared to accept that this game wants to pin it on the entire concept of God, "God is evil," "Mankind has outgrown their need for religion," "people who believe in God are shitheads, fuck them"...

Really, doing any kind of story about God is dumb. Nothing you can do in a work of fiction will do the idea of it justice, anyway. It's gonna be a letdown from any angle you try to take it. See Star Trek V for an example.

I really don't care if people want to vomit on likenesses of the Pope for fun and profit, I'm just not a warlike person. All I'm saying is that writing a story that includes God as a character is just bad writing.