So I’ve decided to do that 30 Days of Suikoden meme, because I have a ton of Suikofeelings and I feel like tl;dring about them! And maybe it’ll make Jowy Atreides’s Terrible Life Choices get written faster, who knows?
Day 1 - Favorite Suikoden Series
As I’ve browsed through the Suikoden tag, I’ve noticed that pretty much everyone names II as their favorite when they do this meme. Therefore, I…
…am going to continue that trend, because I fucking love Suikoden II. Most of the other Suikoden titles suffer from either rushed beginnings (I) or interminably long ones (III, V). II, on the other hand, kicks things off with a false flag operation, and nearly every step of the game after that gives you more and more context about the conflict you’ve been thrust into while still moving the plot forward at a good clip. Thorny and complex political situations plus an incredibly well-developed cast plus one of the most memorable villains out there plus a beautiful story about friendship and loss and betrayal at the game’s core equals a game that has become one of my all-time favorites. It might be a sprite game, but it’s a beautifully detailed one; the animations manage to be more expressive than some of the 3D models in later installments (IV, I’m looking at you). And I love how II and I are intertwined, too — if you’ve played the first game, it’s so cool to see how various characters have grown since then and how your efforts as the last game’s protagonist have paid off. The music is beautiful, the world is engaging, and the game manages to strike a great balance between funny and badass and SOBBING FOREVER.
V’s a close second (and in terms of gameplay mechanics, it’s first), but oh lord, getting through the first 10 or so hours of gameplay — and I use that term loosely, considering — was a chore. If I had to put the rest of the series in order, I think it’d go I -> III -> IV. Or, for an even clearer visual representation: II -> V —> I ——> III ———-> IV.