Average games made based on current trends is not a complain that will go away ever in this industry, but every once in a while i have to remember myself that this isn't privilege of the current evil CEO lords trying to destroy gaming. And to do that i just think about playing LoD again, because those were the most wasted 20-25 hours i ever had in my life.
Did you really finish the game? In 20 hours? Nice!
A lot of jrpg's have some huge flaws(a lot of padding, a combat system that requires more grinding than strategy,etc) but at least the good ones will have ambitious behind some aspects of it, the story, the customization, the atmosphere, or all of them. But LoD is not one of those. Playing this game is like looking at a faceless version of someone you love. It has som of the features i come to expect from the genre, but without the interesting or meaningful parts. Nothing interesting ever happens in this game after the first time you see the combat and get your hopes up for a more interactive version of a turn-based rpg, just to discover later you're playing the slowest post-child collection of it's tropes.
So it didn't find it ambitious or atmospheric? Well it sure has some of the most diverse amount of scenarios and unique music I have ever seem in a JRPG. The story is also very well made and presented, if you wish we can talk about it here, ask me anything. I'll be glad to help.
Combat is easily what makes this game unbearable to me. While it also has the absurd amount of random encounters every bad jrpg has, it is made much worse by the simple fact every single of those encounters is tedious and makes me want to die. Sure timing combos is a neat idea, but what is the point if after it you have to keep pushing the same button forever until your attack ends. And yes,of course you have to do it every time, why wouldn't you want to deal more damage and end this boring ass game faster?. It's obviously an exaggeration, but it felt like i had to wait the length of final fantasy VII Remake development for my attack to properly end. That without counting the Dragoon form attack animations, which also can take an unappropriated amount of time given the already slow pace of every hit.
I'll be honest with you and say the first thing that crossed my mind when reading this thread title was: "seems like someone sucks at additions, probably Gust of Wind Dance". But maybe it's not the case.
You enjoy more simply pressing buttons than actually participating in your chars evolution of combat? I do not.
You mention played the game twice now, but it seems you still don't know there are accessories you can buy with gold that execute the addition for you, so no, you don't HAVE to do it yourself, even if you should.
You also mention FFVII Remake while talking about how long attacks can be on LoD... I wonder how was your fight with Sephitoth then... or using some of those summon/materia (KotR)..
And of course, this game had the brilliant idea of making you regain health by guarding, and since heal spells are kinda rare you will need to do that, which will consume even more turns since you only regain a small amount of health back after each one(because of course). And yes, you can cheat in this game pretty easily, since most enemy attacks deal less damage than you regain per turn, so if you play properly you can just wait and regain health enough and win almost every battle. And also yes, because of this some battles take even longer, because if you don't grind enough you will have to use this strategy in bosses and stronger enemies, which means you can spend almost 50 minutes in a boss, most of it guarding.
Healing is very effective on LoD, shielding attacks both half all damage (and prevent any status) and heals you for 10% of your maximum health, for free, and healing items will heal either 50% or 100% of your maximum health for one char or the entire party in a single use... you can't possibly complain about healing on LoD.
You can also use healing dragoon magic with any female character in your party. So just stick one into your party.
"Well then just grind" is what you usually do in games like this, and you would think that with the amount of random encounter you have in this it would not take that long. But you silly reader, of course that isn't the case. And it isn't the case because every battle will give you almost nothing in experience. You better prepare a podcast to hear while playing if you decide that i'm not worth trusting and go for it, because you will need a lot of time to gain a single level.
You are right, random encounters give you low exp, but the game is pretty easy, it knows the levels you are around in each boss fights because of that which means they knew the kind of challenge to give you... and aside from maybe the first fight with Lenus you won't be having much trouble anywhere else. Unless you do suck at additions, that is.
The worst part is really that, after getting through all of this, you don't even have a story or characters that are anything more than bland, mediocre and forgettable. Dartz's silly name is the only charming or even memorable thing about him, and i can't even say the same about the other ones(however, look up rose demon's gate on youtube). They're a collection of tropes and cliches that i'm sure were already tame in 2000. The love interest is the love interest for no other reason other than that's how these games do it. The big guy is heavy and dumb, the funny guy says funny things(or try at least), and so on. All of this delivered in the most by the numbers badly localized dialogue ever.
The english localization really is lacking, but neither the characters or the story are bland (maybe Miranda, but that's it).
The love interest has no reason? Aside from the fact both characters grew up together with the protagonist protecting the love interest up to being 18 years old even from back in the day of being kids he would throw himself into dangererous monsters to protect her and in the game age invade the country's more dangerous prision to rescue her, fight all kind of monsters to protect her and defy the will of their world's creator to save her?
Welp, guess they mean nothing to each other.
i summed what really kills this game for me already, but i could go on about how the music is forgetablle, the battles and menus take forever to load, the backgrounds are not impressive for a game released after ffVII, the fact that evey map, be it a town or a dungeon, has awful layout so you waste even more time lost and not knowing where to go, etc. Hopefully you got my point already. I think this is the example of a generic bland waste of a game and it's the worst type in gaming, because a game being bad is not as damaging as a game being bad and boring.
The music is unique and personally I love it.
The backgrounds are not impressive? Sure you jest sir, those scenarios are a joy to look at even today.
You were getting lost? Again, even as you played the game twice you apparently missed a very simple mechanic by just trying your controller buttons where everything of interest in any maps have colored arrows pointing right to it, like blue arrows for shops, yellow for places to heal, green for places to access other parts or exit the map, even color changing ones to warn you about the imminence of random encountours.
If you want a turn-based games with timed combos done better play paper mario. If you want a more traditional fantasy rpg you can try shadow hearts or even chrono cross. I just wanted to voice my opinion that LoD is really not worth even the time i wasted writing this. Have a nice day.
Did you know the guy that made Mario RPG battle system is the same one that created LoD? Good to know you liked combos there.