star_ocean_fan: (Default)
This is the final call for Ask the Star Ocean Character - Meracle Chamlotte. You have until midnight Wednesday, April 18, 2012, to submit your inquiries. There's a limit of THREE questions per person. You can submit questions via reply or PM. As I've said before, if you wish to remain "anonymous" or have a specific name you'd like for me to use, please let me know, and I will accommodate you.

Again, final call for Ask the Star Ocean Character - Meracle Chamlotte. After this, Ask the Star Ocean Character is postponed so I can sort out the order and get a few more games played. I'd like to be able to cover all of the games, saving my favorite characters for the absolute last.

* * * *

Cosplay by Kojika, Part One

If you've ever attended a convention, one of the things you'll see is people dressing up as favorite, beloved characters. The less specific the convention is - like Otakon or Comic-Con - the larger in variety of cosplay (short for costume play) will be. For example, you will see the Joker, Inuyasha, Cloud Strife, and a Storm Trooper in the same room or at least in a 12-hour span, depending on the convention. (Last year, for Otakon, two of my friends dressed up as Dark Helmet and Col. Sanders from Spaceballs.) The more specific the convention, such as BotCon, the more you'll see people dressed as characters from that particular show. (One of the Cybercon and BotCon shows I attended, two people were dressed up as Optimus Prime and Megatron - full metal costumes!)

The Star Ocean fandom is no stranger to seeing cosplay. Just typing "Star Ocean" into deviantArt's search engine will bring up many different pictures of people in their cosplay. Some are good. Some are not so good. A lot of that, as my friend Kojika would tell anyone interested in cosplaying, is dependent upon the materials used. The right kind of wig can make all of the difference for a handmade costume.

Kojika and I haven't known each other for very long. In fact, we started talking last summer after I found some of her Faize cosplays on dA, browsed through her gallery, and saw that she'd been to a previous NMACon, which is a local anime convention for people in Northern Michigan (where I live).

I believe Kojika is a very amazing, talented woman. She draws, she writes, and she can sew her own cosplay together (with the exception of wigs). She's also graciously (and excitedly) given me permission to display her Star Ocean cosplay for this journal. If you wish to see more of her cosplays you can find her at and

And if you have a question about creating cosplay, she is one person I recommend asking. She's been at this for five years at least, perhaps even longer.

Here is a sampling of pictures of her Star Ocean cosplay. Today, it's Ilia of First Departure. I was only going to do this in three parts, but there are many pictures of her dressed as Claude, Albel, and Faize, and my intention is to give of her costumes its own display. So tomorrow, instead of it being Albel, it will be Claude and (hopefully) Rena.

Ilia at this year's ShutoCon. Debut for Ilia. Kojika plans for her to appear at ACen as well.

More Ilia.

I don't know if there are pictures of Kojika creating her Ilia costume. I know from browsing her dA cosplay gallery, she takes pictures of the accessories she makes but the actual sewing, if applicable (because, let's face it, sometimes cosplay is as easy as shopping for the right shirt) is one thing as of this moment I'm unsure of if she snags pictures.

And thus is the end for Ilia . . . at least for display purposes. :) If you wish to see more of Ilia, please head to Kojika's website, find the convention photos button, click on it, and then click on ShutoCon 2012.

Photos belong to Kojika. Used with permission.

* * * *

Merchandise Update

A big thank you to [info]missnox who's PMed her list of Official Merchandise for all four Star Ocean games. I do have an older picture of hers that shows everything she owns, including doujinshi, but I'm quite sure she's added onto this list since she took the photo. :) I know I PMed her back, thanking her, but I wanted to take this moment (as it just hit me) to thank her again, this time publicly.

Your efforts, [info]missnox, are apprciated. :)

* * * *

A Thought

A few years ago, I posted to a community, the [info]lutherxfayt community, a few things that I'd like to do with Till the End of Time. (In fact, as I work on this, I'm at the community right now to find the entire list of everything I wanted to do that's Till the End of Time related.) I do remember that I wanted to create an Elicoorian calendar. Here's the original post:

What is this something new and unusual, you might ask?  It's simple, really.

The community, as a whole, is going to create a calendar for Elicoor II.  More specifically, the Aquarian/Glyphian calendar.  I'm figuring since they're such close neighbours, they will ultimately have similar, if not the same, days of the week and months.

This is what the calendar project needs to determine:

the number of months in one year and the names of those months
number of hours in a day
number of days in a week and the names of the days
number of moons that surround Elicoor II, the names of those moons, and how many phases are there*

While Elicoor II is close to that of medieval Earth, we must remember it is NOT Earth.  I'd have to get the information off of one of my games I have going for SO3, but Elicoor II has a different axis and rotation as compared to Earth.  The number of hours in a day may be more, it may be less.  Please do not worry about holidays as of this moment.  Those will come once we have established a calendar everyone is satisfied with.

So?  Who's game for this?

Only one person bit on that particular subject but then the [info]lutherxfayt community is relatively small and quiet. The pairing itself is rather obscure (almost like the Luther x Maria and Luther x Sophia stories . . . I've seen at least one LuRia . . . /shudders/) so creating something like an Elicoorian calendar would actually require a much larger group.

If anyone is game on this, please let me know. I'd be interested in thinking outside of what our current calendar is.

* * * *

What the Future Might Hold

In the years that I've been writing Star Ocean fanfiction, specifically for the unusual Luther x Fayt pairing, I've taken to writing holiday-themed stories as well as alternate universe, general continuity, and some crossovers between Till the End of Time. I've written a couple of one-shots for Valentine's Day, Christmas (which will be posted in December of this year), and for Halloween (also will be posted in October of this year) with plans to write chaptered pieces for the holidays in the future. It isn't unusual for a fanfic writer such as myself to do that, but I'd also not be surprised if no one considered such a thing, either.
Read more... )
What do my fellow Star Ocean fans think? Again, I will reiterate that this is a FICTIONAL scenario. While the possibility of a World War III exists and it potentially possessing severe, holocaustic capabilities, the chances of the outbreak are slim. Too many people do fear that possibility, and I believe that our current governments want to avoid it as well. I will also ask that, while you don't have to like what I'm saying about a fictional futuristic life, you at least keep an open mind about the possibilities for the truth is: we don't know what the future will hold.

* * * *

Fanfic: A Blessing of Spring
World: Till the End of Time
Characters: Albel Nox, Luther Lansfeld with mentions of Fayt Leingod, Ryoko Leingod, Nel Zelpher, and Sophia Esteed
Rating: PG13-ish
Warnings: Well, it is from Albel's point of view . . . everyone seems to be in agreement he doesn't like Sophia . . . so be warned. Albel doesn't like Sophia.
Disclaimer: I do not own Till the End of Time or the characters of Luther Lansfeld, Fayt Leingod, Ryoko Leingod, Albel Nox, Sophia Esteed, and Nel Zelpher. Those rights belong to Square Enix and Tri-Ace respectively. This was written for fun. I do not profit financially from writing this story.
Summary: It's almost time for her arrival yet again, and Albel is not happy. Until a brief encounter changes his mind otherwise.


Read more... )
star_ocean_fan: (Fayt Leingod)
Every fan of the Star Ocean series has quite possibly played every game in the series. It's a bit of a blanket statement, but I'm going to hold it as being true for the most part even though I'm not in the category just yet. Chances are, it's also quite true and not just me as holding it true.

Every Star Ocean game has played out in a sequence. The first to be released, naturally, was Star Ocean 1, which was re-released to the PSP as First Departure. The hero of that game is Roddick Farrence with the backing characters of Ilia Silvestri, Ronyx J. Kenny, Millie, and Dorn (as well as others not listed in my gaming manual).

In reading a small portion of the manga, which is called And to The Far Side of Time by Kajiba Ataru, I already have a feel for the premise of the game. Stone sickness appears in the game, and the duly appointed heroes by the game's creators must find the source and the cure. The game ends, if I'm not mistaken, with the final battle being against Asmodeus. (First Departure and Second Story/Second Evolution players, if anything is incorrect, LET ME KNOW. Please! And a full cast of playable characters and major NPCs would be nice, too!)

Next in the series is Second Story/Second Evolution, with the hero of the story coming from the Kenny line introduced in the first game. I don't know the name of the planet Claude winds up on, but I know it isn't Roak. I know that the enemy is referred to as the Twelve Wise Men, and they wish to destroy the universe. Blue Sphere is a follow-up of some kind to that game.

Third official in the series is Till the End of Time. In it, our hero, Fayt Leingod, is on vacation with his family - perhaps while he's on spring break, though the manga puts it as a summer vacation to explain Sophia's being there better. I personally will lean towards spring break due to Sophia asking Fayt "Didn't you say you had a ton of homework to do?" and either his mom or his dad (leaning towards mom)  telling him to not ignore Sophia so much since she didn't have to take time out of her schedule to vacation with them . . . a new start to the game will help me to clarify that, if only for me. It is on this vacay with his family where his life is turned upside and he's chased halfway across the galaxy/universe by the Vendeeni. He, along with Cliff Fittir and Mirage Kaos, crash-land on Elicoor II, where most of his adventures take place. Ultimately, he learns of his powers, of what his parents intended for him to do with those powers, and final culmination of the series itself ends with the final battle between "God" (Luther Lansfeld/Lucifer) and his creations.

Which brings us to the Last Hope and why it was set before all three games combined. Till the End of Time pretty much ends everything since the final battle severed the ties between the Eternal Sphere and its database. Luther attempting to wipe the entire server clean didn't help. The Last Hope was one more chance at a Star Ocean game (is supposed to be the last Star Ocean game), and to tie the all of the games together. It explains why the UP3 itself is important and how it came into existence. As the players of the Last Hope know, the premise behind it is to save mankind from imminent destruction. The Earth has fallen into decay, thanks to the carelessness of war, and humans need a new home. Enter space exploration and Edge Maverick, our intrepid hero. It is because of the lessons he must learn that builds the premise of the story and ends with the final battle between he and the Apostle of Creation/Satanail/Faize.

The Last Hope is a game that a fan either loves or hates. I know of at least one person who won't play because of the graphics. I've had another tell me it didn't quite grab her the way Till the End of Time did. When I found out the timeline for the Last Hope, I was disappointed. I truly did (and still do) want another game with one of my favorite heroes, Fayt Leingod. I love the graphics for the game (the CG better than the anime), I love the characters, and I love the story, but I feel that many fans were like me upon learning of a new Star Ocean game. More of the same characters from Till the End of Time. While it does bring the other stories together by the drafting and publishing of the UP3, some things, in my mind, just create more questions than answers.

In The Last Hope, we see stone sickness appear. It's something endemic to Roak only so naturally we will see it. In reading the first chapter to the very first Star Ocean manga, no one knows what stone sickness is. Yes, the story is taking place on the continent called Muah, and it's also possible that, after three hundred some years, people have forgotten about it because it's "died" out in some way. Unless there's a war of some kind that has broken out to destroy history records, though, I'm finding it hard to believe that the healers in First Departure don't know what the disease is. It feels like a minor slip on the writers' parts for The Last Hope, but it's a major one when it comes to tying everything together. Of course, I'll know for sure when playing First Departure on how this works out.

The other thing that just seems odd is the lack of mention for the Muah in Till the End of Time. I know in First Departure the Muah will be mentioned. It's in the game's manual. But the Muah are supposedly an ancient alien race that came to Earth. Their remains and D.N.A. were discovered by Arnold Maverick, Edge's dad. The D.N.A. of the Muah are what separate Edge and Reimi apart from normal humans. The D.N.A. of the Muah is why Edge can cast spells in and out of battle and possibly why humans later on can cast offensive, healing, and support spells.

The lack of symbological genetic research in seven hundred plus years also bothers me. It feels like it's started with Arnold Maverick but then is promptly forgotten until Robert and Ryoko Leingod start their research. Robert and Ryoko are the ones who become pioneers in that field, and it's that driving force that triggers the Vendeen attacks on Hyda IV and Elicoor II. The Vendeeni are after Robert and Fayt. Why wait so long to study and learn about that particular field?

Third, supposedly, according to either the game manual, the game summary, or the strategy guide, Roak and Earth are somehow tied together, and the players are supposed to figure it out. It's because of the Muah that Earth and Roak are connected, but we never learn anything about the Muah aside from the fact that they've inhabited both Earth and Roak at one point. Beyond that, yeah, we know nothing, and it's a tease. We don't get to learn anything more because we're now too busy trying to save the universe from the Phantoms, the Grigori, and Nox Obscuris.

I also feel that, by jumping back in time by 762 after the events of Till the End of Time, it might have turned many fans off from the game. It isn't unusual for Tri-Ace and Square Enix to jump around with timelines - in a conversation about Final Fantasy with my best friend yesterday, she said as much; I've not played very many of the Final Fantasy games so the only other person I know of who could possibly disprove that is my younger brother. I'm taking her word for it, though, because I know she has no reason to lie to me about it - and the Star Ocean series seems to be no exception. The Last Hope, while giving fans another game in the series, hasn't given the fans what they truly wanted. In some emails with yet another fan, I've learned that, in Japan, the two most popular Star Ocean games are, in fact, Second Story and Till the End of Time. If I were to guess on what it is everyone really wanted to see, they wanted more of either of those two games and not another set of heroes to learn about and invest our time and emotions in through game play. We've already done that with characters like Fayt Leingod and Claude C. Kenny. We want to see more of them. I can't blame the game writers and designers for going in the direction that they did, and I do love that game very much . . . but Till the End of Time rules in my heart.

Will there be more Star Ocean games? I really don't know. I've expressed a desire to see more. However, given the lack of enthusiasm by the fans over The Last Hope, I wouldn't be surprised if Tri-Ace and Square Enix don't release any more in that series. I realize that the amount of official merchandise isn't really anything to go by . . . but there isn't much for The Last Hope in terms of it. Yes, it seems that perhaps the market for gaming merchandise is going away, but I've browsed over the North American site for Square Enix. While there isn't much for The Last Hope, Final Fantasy VII still sees a lot. :) One can only hope that we will see more games, and a re-release of Till the End of Time in the near future.

Up for tomorrow: The Cliche' of the Star Ocean Universe/Final Call for Ask the Star Ocean Character - Sophia Esteed, perhaps even a one-shot fanfic.
For Thursday: Symbological Genetics - Why Is It a New Field of Study for Till the End of Time/Call Out for Ask the Star Ocean Character - Maria Traydor
Friday: Character Study - Sophia Esteed/Ask the Star Ocean Character segment - Sophia Esteed, perhaps another one-shot fanfic
Weekend: Up in the air. Could see at least one part to Chapter Three of Destinies Intertwined by Fate. But mostly up in the air.

star_ocean_fan: (Default)
If there's one thing that's ever a constant in a fandom, it's the use of certain names. It's this use of common names that not only brings in new fans but tries to snag the older fans as well. In glancing over the manuals for First Departure and Second Evolution and playing The Last Hope, one last name comes up quite a bit. That is the last name of Kenny.

It's understandable that the last name of Kenny carries some weight. In the Last Hope, which chronologically is first in the storyline for it starts everything to be seen in the previous games, Stephen D. Kenny is a war hero. Stephen is introduced to us at the start, thought not as a playable character. By the way everyone reacts to his presence - from Deputy Director Shimada's mild disdain and whatever else he is towards Kenny to the hero worship on Edge's part - Stephen D. Kenny has already made a name for himself from the last war on Earth. In fact, with the appearance of Stephen D. Kenny, the legacy of the Kenny family has started. While he isn't the hero of the story, Ronyx J. Kenny of the very first Star Ocean game does play a major role for being a minor character. In Second Story/Second Evolution, his son, Claude Kenny, takes center stage, thus proving just how noble and heroic the Kenny line and last name truly is.

However, in Till the End of Time, there are no characters, not even NPCs, with the last name of Kenny. The famous name you hear most is Leingod, because the Leingods - Robert and Ryoko - have established themselves not only as brilliant scientists, but brilliant scientists in a relatively "new" field of study: Symbological Genetics and Genemorphism. Their son, Fayt, is the hero of that particular story (as all Star Ocean fans know).

Does this mean that the legacy started by Stephen D. Kenny has died out? I personally don't think that it has. I think that, in the hands of the right fanfiction authors, the last name of Kenny is still alive and living up to the reputation of previous predecessors. I also think that girls were born with the last name of Kenny, and those who married took on the last names of the men they fell in love with, depending on how far away they want to get away from the last name of Kenny. (Traditional mindsets will see the women taking on their husbands' last names. And some people, if it's a very famous last name, do their best to put as much distance between them and the family name as possible, especially if expectations are exceptionally high due to the last name alone.)

For myself, I believe that Fayt Leingod has ties to the Kenny family as a direct descendant. It may seem unlikely, since he is the son of two scientists, but, if I'm guessing correctly as to who Claude's mother is (Ilia Silvestri), it doesn't seem too far-fetched as she is not only a soldier but a woman with an education. (According to the game manual for First Departure, she has a Ph.D.) Just because his parents don't have seeming military ties doesn't mean he isn't of the Kenny bloodline.

With that, I ask, who in Till the End of Time do you think has ties to the Kenny family? Or even to the Maverick or Saionji families?

star_ocean_fan: (Luther Lansfeld)
First up is a video animated by the ever so talented Charryblossom!

Paffendorf Dance - Star Ocean: Till the End of Time

Caramelldansen - Star Ocean: Till the End of Time, Albel and Nel

Tribute to Albel Nox

Sound quality isn't great, but both of are still awesome to watch.

Not sure who did this one, but it's still so cute!!

Caramelldansen - Star Ocean: First Departure

Albel Nox Tribute by some Albel fans

Fayt Leingod tribute

Albel and Fayt tribute

Hanamaru Sensation - Star Ocean: Till the End of Time

This is just a small sampling of the numerous fan-made videos one can find on youtube. In addition to cosplay and animations, there are clips from the games. Simply type in the words "star ocean" or a character's name, and away you go!

Also, a quick note - I'm going to be revising my character study on Reimi Saionji to coincide with the Ask the Star Ocean Character segment of this blog.

* * * *


Ask the Star Ocean Character will make its debut this Friday. ALL QUESTIONS MUST BE SUBMITTED BY MIDNIGHT, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 21, 2012. The first character to be featured for the Ask the Star Ocean Character is Reimi Saionji of the SRF-003 Calnus, from The Last Hope. Anything received after Wednesday will be filed away for a later use, depending on how well it takes off . . . or more like if I feel Reimi needs some more love. We'll see.

So if you have a burning question that you've simply got to ask Reimi, now's your chance! Remember! Get into character and have fun thinking up those questions! LIMIT ONE QUESTION PER PERSON

The next character for the Ask the Star Ocean Character will be Sophia Esteed. Questions for her can be submitted starting Thursday, March 22, 2012, after I've posted the official call out.

* * * *

Up for tomorrow: Part Two to Destinies Intertwined by Fate, Chapter Two . . . hopefully. :)

star_ocean_fan: (manga Fayt Leingod)
I actually like the title of this entry enough for it to be a fanfiction title. :) I may just have to write that down. Hehehehehe.

Anyway, even though I've yet to play First Departure and Second Story/Evolution,  I do have a bit of a working knowledge about the final bosses.Cut for spoilers and prosterity )

Now for a list of the Star Ocean games and their available platforms:

Star Ocean                                                                  Super Nintendo; Japan only
Star Ocean: Second Story                                        PlayStation
Star Ocean: Blue Sphere                                         Nintendo Gameboy; Japan only
Star Ocean: Till the End of Time                             PlayStation 2
Star Ocean: First Departure - remake                   PSP
Star Ocean: Second Evolution - remake               PSP
Star Ocean: The Last Hope                                     XBox360; PlayStation 3

I am currently in the process of compiling a list of official Star Ocean merchandise, which does not include doujinshi. I currently have a link to a site of official merchandise, but it hasn't been updated since the person first started it. It does give me an idea of where to start. Right now, I'm starting with the games and where those who haven't played them but want to can find them.

eBay is always a good place to look for video games. Typing in Star Ocean will bring in all kinds of results, including fish food and ocean liner memorabilia. However, be very wary about purchasing any game from someone on eBay. I realize some editions of each game are becoming collector's items, like Star Ocean for the SNES, Star Ocean: Second Story, and Star Ocean: Blue Sphere for the Gameboy. In fact, eBay is the only place I can think of right now where people will be able to find those. However, for the games like Till the End of Time, the Last Hope, and the remakes/re-releases of First Departure and Second Evolution, I recommend heading to a local GameStop or heading directly to the websites for Square Enix or Sony. Instead of paying $30-$80 for Till the End of Time, as an example, either in Used or New conditions, you'll pay a lot less at GameStop (for used) or the companies' official websites (for new). (I'd personally recommend heading to the Square Enix or Sony sites . . . a new copy of Till the End of Time is $19.99, not including shipping. I can't say it'd be that low on a site like eBay.) It's important to be economical when it comes to buying video games. If you can get it cheaper through another site like Square Enix's website, that's what I'd recommend a person to do. (Also be wary if you're out to find the strategy guides as well . . . some people on eBay won't hesitate to charge a person $100 for a paperback book that was originally $30 in stores.)

Also, one other note, and this is in regards to The Last Hope: It was originally released on the XBox360 system in advance of the PS3 version. It may not seem like there'd be much of a difference between the two, but the truth is there is a difference. When it comes to Item Creation (it's in all Star Ocean games), some items will require an extra ingredient in the PS3 version. The PS3 version also has some additional treasure chests or has items in chests that are different from the XBox360 version. According to a friend of mine, Square Enix pushed for the XBox360 release before creators Tri-Ace were ready to release. There are a few kinks to that version, so player be warned.

As for which one I think is better . . . well, I've only played the PS3 version so I'll be going with that. It's just a pain when you need additional items to make the same things in the same game but you're playing on a different system. I know this because I did buy the strategy guide for The Last Hope when it was available in Wal-Mart. It gives the read-outs for both systems. Those who only own the XBox 360 version swear by that. It does depend on the system you own as to which one you'd consider to buy. If you own both systems, eh, give them both a whirl. The story's still the same, but it wouldn't hurt to have the same game twice. You know. Just in case. ;)


star_ocean_fan: (Default)

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