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Justice Chronicles RPG - Quasi-Review Because I Felt Like It


Meteo Xavier
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It does feel weird to make topics on rather small subjects the same as I did 15-16 years ago as the community here isn't nearly as interested in those things as before, but I still feel compelled to contribute them here regardless of how adolescent it makes me look and feel.

So one game I've become slowly addicted to as of late is one of the 112+ small-name SNES JRPG knockoffs that Kemco has been releasing as indie games for the last decade or so called JUSTICE CHRONICLES. It's the first of these RPGs that I've actually spent some dedicated time and effort into and by now it's paying out some dividends. JUSTICE CHRONICLES is not a hidden gem or anything, it's all stuff that's been done before and done better. The graphics and music feel like Chrono Trigger and other JRPG knockoffs that were made well enough to pass but not really provide any unique magic or identity to the game. It's a somewhat gussied-up appetizer trying to look kinda like a meal at TGIFridays or something, but on its own merits, I have found myself more and more wanting to play it at the end of each day. I've actually ratched up 30 hours on it when I'm pretty sure I could've cleared this game in 18 if I wanted.

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One major reason for that is an interesting little dynamic that doesn't get observed nearly as often is that despite taking a whole lot of stuff from other, better JRPGs, putting it in one game, giving a forgettable modern shonen coat of paint on it and calling it good is how ridiculously USER-FRIENDLY the game is - creating an experience that makes a rather bare experience look and feel more likeable and positive. Most every gameplay complaint I remember gamers bitching about over the last 30 years has actually been mitigated here:

* Battles are quick and efficient.
* Grinding does not come up that much.
* Menus have stuff that remind you what's going on.
* Very little padding of gameplay or plot that I've noticed.
* Overworld maps are just points to go to, like in Super Mario RPG.
* No fighting character is significantly weaker than another, everyone feels like they're pulling their weight.
* Menu option to instantly leave any town or dungeon with no catch or penalty.
* Automap that shows mining items and treasure chests (at least on the 3DS version I'm playing).
* Can give magic and alignments to characters that don't naturally have them.
* Can even double the speed of battles to blast through them quickly.
* Side quests are a mission-based system that make it easy to keep track of.

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Additionally, the game starts out easy enough, but it gets more difficult as it goes on. My characters are on Level 75 and the basic battles in areas I need to go through to progress in the game and they come out battles needing healing more times than not. I don't know if I love this progression personally, but it's an intelligent approach nonetheless.

What's actually been addicting me to the game is the weapon and armor CRAFTING system. I don't really love crafting systems as they add so many more steps to getting better equipment, but this one has addicted me. You have to gather items from mining points and occasionally enemies from dungeons to upgrade your equipment, but you have to find recipes in treasures as the game goes along that all go to a crafting "tree" of sorts. The mining spots are generally plentiful and the game keeps track of a lot of it for you while you can do missions that trade resource items for higher quality ones pretty easily - and then the original ones you traded in now become available for purchase at the item shop. I'd say 9 of the 30 hours I put into the game have been for mining and crafting purposes and I'm still not done. <:O

Won't blow anyone away, but I do recommend checking out JUSTICE CHRONICLES for people like me that can't get enough simplified JRPG stuff and want one that takes a thoughtful approach to it. I think if this game had been released on the SNES, it would be one of the B-tier RPGs that nevertheless commands $200+ on Ebay.

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I appreciate the review! I could probably use something like this on the 3DS, there's a lot of similar RPG offerings there in the downloadables and it's hard to tell which one would be worth the time. Might pick this up, the quality of life stuff sounds very good.

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