…finally went back to Jeanne D’Arc, a fine strategy RPG and a highlight of the PSP’s software lineup, which I put aside back in February because I kept failing a protect mission.
It’s my considered opinion that, while all protect missions in pretty much any game ever are horrible vile things, there are ways to mitigate their horrible vileness. Take, for example, Half Life 2’s protect missions, where you’re escorting a character who’s pretty tough and actually serves as a considerable asset in fighting through hordes of combine soldiers – the “protect” nature of the mission simply serves to keep you moving through a level at a constant pace, rather than letting you dawdle.
This wasn’t one of those. It was a mission escorting a blindly-charging-forward NPC who died if any enemy so much as looked at him AND who did nothing to earn his keep.
Anyway, after several failed attempts at the protect mission, I went with the old RPG standby – if you can’t beat ’em, grind, grind again – and went back to earlier levels and got my core group of characters high enough level that they could more-or-less one-shot every enemy on this particular map.
After that, it wasn’t too bad and I got through on the first attempt after the grindathon.
I do find it funny, and perhaps a little worrysome, that one character, who I put aside in the early levels of the game as being rather boring, keeps getting prominent screen time in the cutscenes. I may have some more grinding in my future if he suddenly decides to take center stage.