Luminous Arc 2 Beta version?

…Or the pre-production version, or a work in progress, or a what ever it could be. It is my memory allocation in that this game was featured in the Tokyo Game Show 2007, so I know it was demo’ed there. Wonder if there be a demo cart floating around…

Some of you may remember that I’ve done some Beta testing work on Joint Operations and it’s expansion pack, JO:Escalation, so Beta->final product versions are nothing new to me. What I did learn from those beta’s is that the test product is never how the final product looks, and I saw it right away when I played Luminous Arc 2 (LA2) and having remembered these images, it felt nostalgic. Seeing as how I’m feeling rather weak and weightless, and with no heart to play LA2 for the 9th time, or pretty much any DS game, I figured I’d do this post to see if I can revitalize myself.

Spoilers if you haven’t played the game. And if you haven’t played the game, you won’t know the differences of these images anyways… images preshrunk due to slow connection, click on them for larger versions.

Those of you who played LA2 might recognize the above picture as not how it is in the game. Those of you who played Luminous Arc 1 (LA1) might recognize it, as it resembles the World Map view, except LA1 had it in the touchscreen, if I remember correctly. Is that a random encounter I see? Considering the Red flag is an objective in the final product, I’d say it is!

I’d say these images are pretty much a test version of the game, I don’t recall these events happening at all so that’s up in the air as to what it is. (The only time Althea could have been in the Ice Hermitage is the guild quest Rainbow Road, but I don’t even recall choices in that quest. And no, not Mario Kart’s Rainbow Road.)

These are interesting. This is definitely a beta-type version as the character battle menu is not like this image above. It seems touch friendly but not very text’y.

I like this one. In the LA2 story we know Fatima and the Beast Fiend’s are not related. But here we have them fighting alongside each other. The story changed in the middle of game development? Maybe a WiFi battle? Interesting…

These are perplexing. In the game we know that Chapter 3, or rather when Fatima first appears, is the only fight between her and the Rune Fangs. But what’s this? It looks like a ending choice menu that shows up. Not to mention this is similar to how it was in the retail version, besides the red arrow for the choices. Now get this: we know Dia is not participating in the fight in the retail version, so these scenes have two things about them. 1, these could be similar to games like, Megaman Legends that have story scenes use the game engine. It could be the case here that this isn’t exactly the screens after choosing characters, but rather the story using the battle maps to move the Endings choices. Or 2, Dia participates in the battle in this beta-ish version of the game. Hmmm…

I like how awesome this would have been. Dia, and all the other witches besides Althea and Fatima, have their final Magic art in a cross attack pattern, or 3 square pattern, hitting an area like 1 bad guy in the middle and 1 in front, behind and left and right of the baddie. But what’s this? In the game, we know that enemies that will be hit by an area wide attack are full color, with none hittable enemies dimmed out, or with an overcasted shadow about them. But in this image, it seems like Dia can hit a size as large as Althea’s Ignis Blaze (an 5 square area), as we can plainly see the Golem at the far right of the image is dimmed but the rest are lit up, showing an area much larger than a cross shape. Could it be that the game developers/writers felt that Althea and Fatima, the two most important witches, be the only ones with the 5 square blast radius? Could be…

Here’s one that’s been bothering me for quite some time. Some of you may know that I’ve played this game 9 times already, and not once do I see the Lapis featured here. In the Rina screenshot we see what appears to be a pierce Lapis, and in the other we clearly see a Counter Lapis in effect. Definitely not in single player, it could be a WiFi only gem but then maybe, just maybe the developers felt this would have made the game too easy? A piercing Fracture Slash sounds just about as painful as it can get!

While I can speak and understand Japanese, I think it’s rather distasteful that I can’t read and write it. But hey, I was born in Germany so it’s not like I was supposed to learn Japanese in the first place. I think it’s even surprising that someone like myself actually learned Japanese instead of perfecting Deustche. It sure would help if I could read what these images say about the game. Because I can safely say, this is not how the english version ended up. But I now ask this: would the game be better had it been like, or use elements like these images show? Would it have made it harder or easier?

Hard to tell, despite the 125+ hours I already put into this game. Comments open to all. And yeah, I definitely need to update this here blog, I know some images seem to be gone thanks to a personal server going down, and I need to make it dial-up friendly for myself. 2KB/s is so not funny…

Images are from magazine scans, some of these by someone that appears to be known as “gameshinbun”. Other than that, I claim no ownership as to the source of these images, so whoever scanned the magazine that held these I congratulate you and credit you, who ever you are.

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