Shamelog #010 - Adventures in Berseria

This week I found myself diving into Tales of Berseria a bit harder than previous weeks. Around 30 hours in, it’s slowly gotten it’s hooks embedded in me. The story has wound up enough to the point that I have to know what’s happening next. Oh yeah, and it is so anime.

I just hit a point where a specific big reveal happens, and it finally feels like I’ve hit the meat of the game - I know my path to the end, now I just have to go do it. On one hand I’m kind of annoyed that it took so long to get to this - on the other, it needed to be that long to explain the heady concepts around daemons, moluks, exorcists and everything else that’s happening in this game. It’s a fascinating a world all things considered though, and well worth the commitment to learning.

Berseria actually surprised me with how heavy it gets into so many mature aspects - politics in particular, but also dealing with death, navigating heavy emotions and being an outcast from society. You are no hero in this game - quite the opposite. The faction you are up against is a full on Theocracy, where the enemy are positioned as protectors of the innocent, leading with order and reason, while you are a vengeful daemon out to kill the man who murdered your brother, full of passion and freedom. I don’t know if it’s just the political climate we’re in currently, but I’m seeing way more parallels between this game and real life.

One particular facet of Tales of Berseria I’m in love with is the way it gives every character, good and bad, room to be 3 dimensional. You get the chance to see all characters motivations, and come to respect every side of a given issue. This game doesn’t seem to have any “bad guys” just yet - only people doing what they think is right.

There is, however, one sticky point I’m having trouble dealing with - the maybe sexism. That sounds like a loaded phrase, I know, but there’s bits of this game that just stick me the wrong way, yet others that are so opposite to that thought process that it feels like 2 seperate writers with 2 different ideas of what these characters are. I need to hash this out - next week I’ll spell it out, because I’d love to hear your thoughts.

As a side note, my girlfriend and I have gotten back into Pokemon Go again. It’s still a bad game mechanically, but it has just has such a great hook and some of the bad has been dealt with. The new updates with gyms and new pokemon have been great too.

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Games left to play: 117

Current game: Tales of Berseria