Amazing story, worst game play ever seen
I typically don't write reviews. I've been playing games since 1984. All of them, all genres. This is the first game that I felt compelled to write a bad review on, because I just can't let it go. Fate/Extra has one of the best story lines in a psp game (outside of Persona, Crisis Core, Star Ocean). However this game has the WORST battle system i've ever seen invented for a game in the history of gaming. Couple that with the fact that you can't save while grinding, and can be killed off of bad RNG, setting you back hours of game play, its pointless and sad. Most will trudge through it like good little soldiers that enjoy the story and are sadists at nature. (I suppose I am one too then). Bottom line, save yourself days of disappointment and frustration and watch the anime and never ever get this game. If you're a hardcore fan of the Anime then that might ease the pain of how pitifully bad the game play is.
Great story, really boring gameplay
When I play an RPG, I have one thing in mind: the narative. Many people are interested in things like gameplay and whatever extras come with the game (card battle systems come to mind). However, I want to feel attached to the characters; to feel like they do. I want a moving experience. I remember the flurry of emotions when Hiro first encountered Lucia in Lunar: Eternal Blue. I remember the feeling of being truly alone when playing Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter as the hero is shunned by the society he comes from. Now, I got that experience when I watched Fate/Stay Night. The lingering heaviness of a bittersweet farewell involved in the ending was a powerful thing.
I came into Fate/Extra expecting the same sort of feeling. They weren't on the same level for me. I wasn't expecting the classes to be the same people as from the anime but I was expecting some deeper interactions than I was given. The story was well written (perhaps a bit too abstract in some places and hand-holdy in others). However, the narative (all of the elements of the game that contribute to the story; not just the writing) was just so empty. Combat was slow, cumbersome, and unavoidable. There were so many times that I found myself dodging enemies just so I wouldn't have to fight again - not because my health was low but because I was bored. The sound for the game wasn't bad but I wouldn't call it "inspired" in any way.
The graphics, on the other hand, are pretty darn good for the psp. The environments ranged from blah to rich and an unholy level of awesome. However, the enemies were commonly pallet swaps from previous floors. So, if your goal is to experience a good story, this is a good game. But if you need the compete experience: excellent mechanics and a firm grasp on how to drag the player in (kicking and screaming if necessary) to a rich and lush environment, you'll want to look elsewhere.
OK if you know what to expect
This is a RPG with quite a bit of "visual novel" and "dating sim" elements.
So only get this if the fact that the game is very text-heavy. does not turn you off
The nice thing is If you get tired of certain aspects of the story, you can just skip conversations with triangle. If you missed something you can review with square.
it's a pretty good game.
all and all i'm not a huge fan of the game, but they did a great job on it.