14 thoughts on “GSQ8: Ying and yang

  1. Does anyone have a thought as to why the series trailed off? Was it poor sales and a combination of the Dragon Quarter team moving on to Dead Rising?

    BoF’s absence is sort of a shame. It really tried to distinguish itself from its Dragon Quest-inspired origins. It makes me wonder what a new Breath of Fire title would be like if it could benefit from the Dead Rising engine and nearly a decade of game design evolution.

    As an aside, I’ve always found it odd that none of the BoF characters were included in any of the Marvel Vs. Capcom games.

  2. Great piece of writing Loki — long but totally compelling the whole way through. I hope this gets plenty of links!

  3. It is a great shame that it was so overlooked. I remember being so excited to hear that there was so much hand drawn animation. It always confused me why people preferred polygonal models with the potential do do more things, but scoffed at sprites that actually did all of those things, and looked better doing them.

  4. One of my favorite games of the era. It’s a very well-written article, really gets at what I found appealing in the game, and the artwork is fantastic as well; one of the few art books I own.

  5. Breath of Fire IV really was great. I’m glad people are finally speaking up about this!

  6. I can’t help but agree with this article. I’d say the most underrated aspect of Bof IV was probably the music. Almost every part of the game was a huge improvement on what had gone before, but that was what stood out the most for me. Yoshino Aoki really did a great job.

  7. Definitely my favorite BoF game, and an excellent overlooked addition to the PSX RPG line-up. Good times.

  8. Well, I’ll have to get BoFIV on PSN. Great article, never knew that the story was any good because I’ve never really heard anything about it.

    • My guess is that it was overshadowed by Final Fantasy IX. I bought them on the same day and didn’t touch BoFIV until I’d thoroughly finished FFIX several weeks later.

      In retrospect, BoFIV seems to be the more memorable of the two, for me at least. It had a lot of different gameplay sequences that changed things up every few hours.

      @OtherMac Guy: Indeed. One thing both BoFIV and FFIX got right was demihuman party members.

  9. My copy of BoF IV got lost in a move years ago, and reading this article in GSQ8 made me especially disappointed that it was gone (especially since it had gotten expensive in secondary markets). Its arrival on PSN is fantastic news, and I hope a lot of people aside from me take advantage of the opportunity.

  10. I’ve had arguments with people that say that BoF III is the best of the series. After having played this one, I can’t for the life of me see why. It takes everything that was bad (or almost everything) about the previous entry and tosses it. I seem to remember the localization being better, the text speed faster, the game prettier, and the plot was very intriguing, which may have been a byproduct of the better localization.

    It is disappointing that the series died after Dragon Quarter. I suspect part of the problem was that particular iteration in the series. It’s a little too different from the norm to really attract much more than a cult following. Some people were probably turned off just from the description of the mechanics, even if it worked better in practice than it sounded.

    At any rate, great game, and great writeup. Capcom really should consider coming back to the series, although I’m not sure I have much faith in them to get it right, much as I have very little faith in Square Enix to get a followup or remake of something like Chrono Trigger right, either.

    • My only guess why people like III more is due to the dragon gene system. Just about everything else in IV was an obvious improvement, but the dragon system feels like a step back after the options presented in III.

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