Horrible storyline and AI, more like a movie, typical Jap. characters, and the ending is the worst.

User Rating: 4 | Star Ocean: The Last Hope International PS3
So, I bought the game thinking that it would be an improvement to the other Star Ocean (PS2), which is a okay game with interesting features (at the time). I was totally wrong and should of read my Gamestop receipt a bit closer to returned it after getting through half of the game.

This is the PS3 version which is basically modified so that in your first run of the game, you cannot gain money and exp as quickly through the usage of item customization like the Xbox version. The international version also includes the original Japanese voice acting, which I turned on after reading other players' reviews.

The story, which is the most important part of a game, failed to be logical or give the player any reason to care. The story begins with the attempt of human colonization of a foreign planet and then they were attack and blah, blah, blah. And so, to save the universe, the main characters have to destroy the threat... But, there's more! (Spoiler Alert) At the end, the main protagonist decided that it would be most logical to get rid of foreign/alien technology (which was the main technology the humans were using to travel in space), start over, and ignore the fact that the aliens ever existed. Hopefully the idea that ignorance is a good thing wasn't promoted in this game because, the background to the story was that the nations went into a nuclear war, "World War 3," and blew everything up, which was caused by the ignorance to the destruction of nuclear weapons and then suddenly realizing that they blew up Earth and made peace. So it's kind of like, what?!

The combat system was, at times, very frustrating. The characters would have a "Fury" meter and when it is full and activated, they could continuously attack without getting interrupted or the character the player is controlling could perform a team attack. However, the enemies have a fury bar as well and theirs last a very long time and generate very quickly, which made fights where there are six or more enemies difficult and annoying to fight since three or more of them would be in fury at the same time. Also, since the enemy AI is better than your team's AI, death is very likely since the AI cannot detect that the enemy is using their fury and will run in and attack normally. There is a dodging system in this game, which would of been a very good addition to the game--if it worked. Basically, if you dodge the attack, (only) the player's character would move to the back of the enemy and can then hit for more damage--this is the main feature used to do (any) damage to all the bosses. This feature fails because when you dodge the attack, you can still get hit from the same attack which defeats the purpose of dodging. I never really understood how to damage the bosses because if you don't hit at the right time or don't dodge the attacks, then you only hit from the teens-to-hundreds (varies accordingly to progress in the game). In the end, I always keep two characters that could heal (excluding the main character) and that's all they did even though they had other attacks.

The game had a lot of cut-scenes that the only time there was actual playing was when you had to get from point A to point B, which was very boring. Since I had the language set to Japanese, the voice acting was somewhat bearable because I am use to some of the "enthusiasm" in anime. However, this "enthusiasm" was over the top and became idiotic. The dialogue is very predictable and took a long time to... express the main idea of a single sentence that I simply couldn't stand it and skipped the cut-scene even though I have never seen it before (something I never do in new games). However, even if you skip a cut-scene, a summary of the scene will appear which was very helpful. Sometimes you had to talk to certain people to get clues of certain areas or to recharge your rings, which the game failed to inform/hint the player because, who wants to talk to the entire town/city to find a girl who can recharge your rings so you can progress (it's always a female).

The characters were simply dumb and dumb looking. There are the two typical high school looking characters, elf/long ear boy, a kid, cat-girl, machine dude with emotions, innocent angel girl with glasses, the go-go girl with big breasts, and literally a "emo" guy with a scythe and who emotionally secluded. Noting is unique about the characters. The personalities of the characters were all very similar, I am nice, I (stupidly) trust everyone (even my enemies), I am the definition of righteousness, I feel guilty for something I did in the past, blah, blah...

There was suppose to be a twist in the end with one of the characters but... it didn't really work since I didn't use that character much nor did I care much about any of them.

In conclusion, I gave this a 4/10 because the graphics aren't bad and that I could actually understand what is going on unlike FFXIII (which I gave a 3.5)--but I feel like I am being generous. I would not recommend this game to anyone and I will not be replaying the game for the additional things.

If you are wanting to buy this game or try it out, get the Xbox version since it is half the price of the PS3 version and hopefully you won't be disappointed as I was.

Good Luck!