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  2. Atelier Totori: The Adventurer of Arland
  3. One thing that baffles me in this game

User Info: Solarys

Solarys
3 years ago#1
What is the purpose of all those negative item traits, like Bad Quality and Reduce Effect?

I know they lower the wholesale price, but there are already so many price-down traits like Price Down, Complex, and Stinky, that don't have negative effects on the item. There are also traits like Airy and Rare Shape that trade some quality for higher success rate, good for making passive/decoration items (Secret Bag, Warp Gate, etc.) and "grinding" Alchemy levels.

Bad Quality could be desirable on one single item, Shadow Band, to minimize the HP-degen, but it's still a waste of Cost since you only have a fixed 17 points for it, which are much better used for Stats +10 and Stats +3.

As for Reduce Effect, is there any practical use for it? - Not that I can think of...
"Teamwork is essential, it gives them other people to shoot at."
AMD Opteron 6348 @ 4.40 GHz || Asus KGPE-D16 || 16 GB DDR3 1600 || Radeon HD 8950

User Info: sonic479

sonic479
3 years ago#2
None whatsoever. Atelier Totori is an old game and was built upon the original Atelier Rorona which suffered from the outdated old system. It wasn't until Meruru that the system was completely revamped.

Lack of customization and usefulness in synthesis and needing to recreate the tools over and over again was what made Totori pretty bad. A shame because almost everything else in Totori was perfect.
Hope, Passion, Effervescent, Tranquility, Intelligence
Action!

User Info: Solarys

Solarys
3 years ago#3
Well, I wouldn't call its alchemy system bad; it's just much simpler than Meruru and Rorona Plus, which isn't exactly a bad thing here, since Totori focuses more on exploration than pure alchemy. Being able to gather/loot the best traits without having to combine them saves a lot of time and effort.

Another thing I like in Totori over Rorona Plus (haven't played much Meruru yet) is the ability to perfectly duplicate any item using Chims. While you can wholesale most crafted items in Rorona Plus with all traits intact, all ingredients and certain useful items like the Tar Liquid can't be wholesaled.

As for having to make the tools again in NG+ (I assume that's what you meant) - well, you should, as you already have too much time in NG+ anyway, like a whole year. If you get to start with the speed shoes, gloves, and the Warp Gate, then you'd have to find ways to kill time before the license renewal anyway.
"Teamwork is essential, it gives them other people to shoot at."
AMD Opteron 6348 @ 4.40 GHz || Asus KGPE-D16 || 16 GB DDR3 1600 || Radeon HD 8950

User Info: Solarys

Solarys
3 years ago#4
OK, I just found that Reduce Effect L actually reduces the wholesale price by quite a lot, and it stacks linearly with Price Down L.

So it does have a purpose after all, as it can be put on expensive synthesis items that have no effects, like the Magic Paint and Pure Oil (and Spring Cup, etc.), to minimize the price.
"Teamwork is essential, it gives them other people to shoot at."
AMD Opteron 6348 @ 4.40 GHz || Asus KGPE-D16 || 16 GB DDR3 1600 || Radeon HD 8950

User Info: sonic479

sonic479
3 years ago#5
The need to recreate the same support tools in order to make a New Game+ playable is bad. The purpose of New Game+ should be about giving you a better play experience for each subsequent playthrough but in Totori's case, recreating key tools is not providing a fun experience; it's tedious. By the 4th playthrough (as I am), you will get sick of trying to recreate that Traveler's Shoes that you need to speed up the game or that Secret Bag so that you don't have to go back to the atelier so quickly.

Traits in Totori are meaningless and with the few good ones, you can't even use them immediately since they'll get lost if you try to wholesale them. Chims are necessarily useful because they deflect the fact the synthesis system is bad and is stacked against you. In Meruru, Homs return back to be your helper instead but that's okay because Meruru's wholesale (now run by Chims) won't remove your good traits for no reason, thus it encourages more synthesis to be done while making it feel like it is rewarding to do so. Meruru also removed all of the useless traits for the now more-famed combining traits technique and there is a reason why it has been in favor even until Escha & Logy (and then after that, Rorona Plus).

Yes, Totori's synthesis is old. No, it's not going to help remove the fact it's bad. Exploration is fun, but synthesizing completely sucks.
Hope, Passion, Effervescent, Tranquility, Intelligence
Action!

User Info: Solarys

Solarys
3 years ago#6
If you have played the PS2 titles, especially Atelier Iris and Mana Khemia (2), you'd probably appreciate the much simpler system in this game, because their quirky and unwieldy systems are what I would call "bad."

In Iris's case, you can only carry 9 of each item, and you don't actually synthesize anything - the shops do, and you have no control over what traits are kept (they all mean nothing, literally). All you can craft are the jewels to enhance your gear, and without having a guide printed out handy, you'd have no idea what does what, and just end up wasting your Mana stones, because everything is so cryptic, like old PC adventure games. (E.g., Attack +6 x Ancient Curse = Mana Slayer - how was I supposed to know that?)

In MK/MK2's case, syntheses are literally a roulette. Some items have their best effects at one specific quality level, like 37 or 69, out of a possible 101 (0~100), so good luck getting the RNG to work for you. Sure, you can use other characters to manipulate the quality level to a certain degree, but that's beside the point.


I skipped Rorona and played Rorona Plus before Totori, and maybe that's why I find the simpler system here rather "refreshing," for the lack of a better term. While I love RP's depth, having to chain-combine traits and calculate the Cost can get tiring and potentially frustrating, especially when crafting accessories.

Anyway, if I have one major complaint about Totori, it'd be that you are given way too much time, even in your initial run. With the way this game is set up, you arguably shouldn't be able to accomplish everything in your initial run and still have time left to craft the best gear, etc. (or the other way around), hence the NG+. But in actuality, unless you are slacking off or lollygagging on the world map all the time, you'd have nothing to do for about 6 months before the license renewal, and another few months at the end, thus making the time-saving tools largely redundant.
"Teamwork is essential, it gives them other people to shoot at."
AMD Opteron 6348 @ 4.40 GHz || Asus KGPE-D16 || 16 GB DDR3 1600 || Radeon HD 8950

User Info: sonic479

sonic479
3 years ago#7
Outside of the Arland trilogy and a bit of Dusk, I haven't touched any other Atelier game. Veteran Atelier players may feel at home with Totori's "improvements" but as a player who isn't a veteran, Totori's synthesis is unappealing and I wouldn't recommend Totori to anyone aside from one or two playthroughs.

While I love RP's depth, having to chain-combine traits and calculate the Cost can get tiring and potentially frustrating, especially when crafting accessories.

You might have found that boring, but I found that to be fun precisely because there's actually meaning to the synthesis. Between the ability to customize by combining traits through chains or finding useless traits and tossing them to random items, I would always prefer the former. Of course, people may like the simplistic straightforwardness of Totori's so if you are that type, hats off to you.

Anyway, if I have one major complaint about Totori, it'd be that you are given way too much time, even in your initial run. With the way this game is set up, you arguably shouldn't be able to accomplish everything in your initial run and still have time left to craft the best gear, etc. (or the other way around), hence the NG+. But in actuality, unless you are slacking off or lollygagging on the world map all the time, you'd have nothing to do for about 6 months before the license renewal, and another few months at the end, thus making the time-saving tools largely redundant.

I disagree: only players who are familiar with the Atelier games can say that with a straight face. Otherwise, I would say Totori is extremely easy for newcomers to game over because the game keeps sending cues for you to gather and fight even though you aren't suppose to do that. Totori herself is a physically weak character and for those coming from Rorona Plus, you would think that later on Totori would get some attack spells as well but aside from Duplicate, she doesn't and that becomes a costly mistake.

Of course, I can say that because I got a game over on my first playthrough, despite having the experience of Rorona Plus beforehand.

Totori's open-world gameplay means that in a blind first playthrough, there is little chance that everything can be done. Even if I magically can get "everything" done on time in that playthrough, I could spend it exploring and I would rather get to that point quicker as soon as possible than be slowed down just because the game wants you to slow down.
Hope, Passion, Effervescent, Tranquility, Intelligence
Action!

User Info: Solarys

Solarys
3 years ago#8
Maybe it's because I'm experienced with these games, I find Totori refreshingly easy after Rorona Plus, and its simpler alchemy system actually fits the premise of the game very well. Totori is an adventurer who uses alchemy to support her explorations, so the game wants you to spend more time adventuring and gathering than synthesizing. Rorona, on the other hand, can actually complete most assignments without even leaving town.

I'm not sure why you say it's easy to get a game over, and I'm rather curious to know, because I can't really relate. I guess you can get sucked into a downward spiral in these games, i.e., if you don't go out to gather early on, you can't make good items; without good items, you can't beat the harder mobs; without beating the mobs, you can't get enough points, etc... However, I'd say it's much easier to get sucked into such a spiral in Rorona than Totori, for the reason I mentioned above.


Also, I don't find Totori to be a physically weak character at all, although this may well depend on your play style and equipment build. I put as many offensive traits on her gear as I could, because she always goes first and doesn't have to take hits; and with her 100% critical, she was consistently my heaviest hitter.

As for the Duplicate skill, it's simply broken with Rorona in party. All you need to do to bulldoze through a great portion of the game is make a good Meteor with both Swarm Slayer and Loner Slayer, plus whatever boosting traits you can afford, and bring some meat items (Puniballs, Dead Beasts, etc.). Have Totori duplicate the Meteor, and Rorona make pies for her to refill her MP. Later on, substitute the Meteor with Himmelstern and Armillary Sphere, and meat with Dizzy Spore Caps for pies that heal both HP and MP. (Of course, you can also Duplicate the Dimension Egg, but I consider it cheating...)
"Teamwork is essential, it gives them other people to shoot at."
AMD Opteron 6348 @ 4.40 GHz || Asus KGPE-D16 || 16 GB DDR3 1600 || Radeon HD 8950

User Info: sonic479

sonic479
3 years ago#9
Atelier Totori is extremely easy to enter into a death cycle because the game starts you with a disadvantage and still insists on penalizing you at every corner. The game keeps convincing you that you need to do X action to get across an obstacle except X action turns out to be the wrong action to make:

- Totori is weak so you go out to level up expecting this will help her (it doesn't).
- You don't have enough Cole to buy stuff from the shops so you start doing a bunch of quests to get more (yet you get penalized for poor performance).
- You don't have enough ingredients for a certain synthesis so you have to go out specifically for those before going back (wasting time on map).
- You reserve good ingredients believing they should be used later when it becomes vital (bad move).
- You aren't sure whether to go to Arland or Alanya so you'll flip between the two often to see what you have missed (a result of misleading or no cues).
- etc.

The infamous way of getting the bad end in Totori - failing to create the ship and get across the sea - is a result of the player getting caught in the game's traps and thus wasted more time on less critical gameplay; the problem is there is no way to know what is "critical" without knowing what to look for ahead of time (i.e. you've already experienced how Atelier games work).

Also, I don't find Totori to be a physically weak character at all, although this may well depend on your play style and equipment build.

I played Totori about the same way as I did Rorona in Rorona Plus and it failed miserably. Totori's heavy reliance on items is what makes her powerful but whacking with her stick is absolutely atrocious; the same can be said for Meruru but Meruru has the advantage of having better equipment and more useful traits and Rorona even has her spells to get across. In Totori, the best trait on a weapon (sans Healing and Holy Power) you can put on it is Attack+10 (means absolutely nothing).

Even with Totori's best equipment in a New Game+, she stops being able to OHKO enemies with her staff earlier than Rorona and Meruru even with half-decent equipment because of their ability to customize the equipment.

As for the Duplicate skill, it's simply broken with Rorona in party. All you need to do to bulldoze through a great portion of the game is make a good Meteor with both Swarm Slayer and Loner Slayer, plus whatever boosting traits you can afford, and bring some meat items (Puniballs, Dead Beasts, etc.). Have Totori duplicate the Meteor, and Rorona make pies for her to refill her MP. Later on, substitute the Meteor with Himmelstern and Armillary Sphere, and meat with Dizzy Spore Caps for pies that heal both HP and MP. (Of course, you can also Duplicate the Dimension Egg, but I consider it cheating...)

Do you expect any newcomer to know any of that when playing? If the answer is "no", then none of that matters.

Duplicate is only good for advanced players to make combos (and powerful when put at its full advantage); otherwise, to the eyes of most, it is a situational skill that Totori carries around that costs high amount of MP to use, conserves items for a couple of turns, and mostly useful for healing item spamming. It isn't a pure offense skill that traditional JRPG players are looking for (and the motivation to leveling up in the first place which, again, becomes a trap). There is nothing wrong with Duplicate itself; the problem is that Totori lacks anything else besides it.

Veteran players will probably say that isn't a problem because Atelier is always about crafting strong items but again, Totori's synthesis system sucks. I like crafting as much as the next person but there needs to be depth to it which Totori doesn't provide.
Hope, Passion, Effervescent, Tranquility, Intelligence
Action!

User Info: Solarys

Solarys
3 years ago#10
I can understand your reasoning, but I can't personally relate, sorry. I always found it's actually harder to get a bad ending in these games without purposely going for it. I actually managed to unlock all endings in my first run, except Mimi's because I didn't bring her onto the ship, and Chims' because I made a Chim Pie assuming I could get more Waters of Life later (dick move, game!).

I suppose a newcomer who is already accustomed to traditional-style RPGs like Dragon Quest, where you are slowly but steadily being shoehorned into better gear as the game progresses, might find these Atelier games bewildering - especially Totori with its open world and overall freedom. (Rorona Plus does a pretty good job holding your hands, easing you into the system.)


Do you expect any newcomer to know any of that when playing? If the answer is "no", then none of that matters.


No offense, but I figured all those things out in my initial run, and I never read a guide in my first play of any RPG - I doubt the guides mention those things, anyway. I can't speak for others, but I'm no genius, and I don't cheat, so if I can figure them out in my first run, so can the next person.

I admit that I am the type of player who enjoys messing around with the game's mechanics and finding various ways to "break" the game (I come from a Pokémon background, and those games really require you to abuse the hell out of the mechanics in PvP - before they went full psycho with this stupid "Mega Magical-Girl Transformation" gimmicky crap), but my point is that it's not hard to figure out how to use each character to your advantage in RPGs, bar the few cryptic ones that are actually puzzle games in disguise.


In Totori, the best trait on a weapon (sans Healing and Holy Power) you can put on it is Attack+10 (means absolutely nothing).


And this is where I think you haven't experimented enough with the game. Attack +10 isn't that good, but there are the four Enchant [element] traits that, when stacked onto the same weapon with 100 quality, effectively double your damage output on a monster with no resistance.

Since Totori always goes first, and never has to take many hits, she's arguably the only character who can afford to have a weapon loaded with Attack +10 (or Quality L) and all of Enchant Fire, Ice, Lightning, and Earth. That, along with a Gnardi Ring with Power Rune and Stats +10/5/3, plus her 100% critical rate, made her my hardest hitter.


Anyway, not looking to turn this into an argument, but I guess this shows how you can play this game to suit your style, which is not something you can do in most traditional RPGs without being severely punished.
"Teamwork is essential, it gives them other people to shoot at."
AMD Opteron 6348 @ 4.40 GHz || Asus KGPE-D16 || 16 GB DDR3 1600 || Radeon HD 8950
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