Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete is 20 years old! Let's celebrate this amazing game

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Member
Aug 1, 2018
2,160
Absolutely loved SSSC! One of the rare games where I actually liked all of their characters you encounter and the music is pretty damn memorable. Like, I still hum quite a bit of it to this day whenever I'm working on stuff.
 
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Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
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I'm not as harsh, but I don't think you're far off. Lunar 1 is a pretty good game elevated to greatness by an excellent soundtrack & the amazing-for-its-time localization which let the characters & world shine. The CD tech which was still new also didn't hurt. It would not be anywhere near as beloved if it got a bog-standard 90's mediocre translation.

Lunar: EB, on the other hand, is arguably the best 16-bit JRPG of all-time.
So, if only the game didn't have great artwork, amazing music, and a for-its-time complex story, a game focused on art, sound, and story would have been totally a flop.

There is a reason people talk about Lunar, and not Vay.
 

KojiKnight

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,567
"DEBATE ME" after calling something "C-tier" with no extrapolation at all.

No.
I made my points clear, this is a discussion forum, not a "agree with me or you are wrong" forum. If you don't want to discuss things with me, that's fine... But these mild personal attacks because I disagree with you are absolutely silly and it's not the first time you've done it to me.


On topic: I think the absolute best thing about SSSC is there making of CD. Not just because it was my first real experience with behind the scenes game development, but because the multiplayer pong mini game was secretly the best party game of the 90's.
 

raye

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Dec 4, 2018
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Thank you for making this thread! This game was so absolutely important to me growing up and the main reason I got into localization. (I'm not crying, you're crying!)
 

werezompire

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Oct 26, 2017
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So, if only the game didn't have great artwork, amazing music, and a for-its-time complex story, a game focused on art, sound, and story would have been totally a flop.
The in-game graphics aren't as good as what Square was doing on the SNES at the time and the cutscenes are a pale shadow of what they would do with the sequel. The plot wasn't any more complex than some of the other RPGs coming out around then like the FF games. The game's really short for the time and Luna being in your party for such a short time (which is something they fixed in the remake) hurt the emotional core of the plot. Soundtrack is great but lots of 16-bit RPGs have great soundtracks.

The localization was a big part of what made the Lunar games special. People just weren't localizing RPGs like that back then and it really stood out.

I never said it was a bad game. I like Lunar 1 a lot (although I like the remake more) but I love Lunar: EB and feel it's a huge improvement over the original, in a similar way to Persona 4 is a huge improvement over Persona 3. And like P4 vs P4, I totally understand some people liking the older game more.

You're being awful aggressive and dismissive of other opinions for someone who did a drive-by to complain that the thread topic was inferior to the older game.
 

muteKi

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Oct 22, 2018
11,153
a sunken pirate ship
In fact I'll go one step further and say the Sega CD version has an overall better OST on every level
You'll never hear me say a bad word about Iwadare (and, for that matter, the Cube group's sound drivers were some of the best on the Genesis platform but I know you don't need me to tell you that) but I think having him make the remade game's soundtrack basically from scratch on his own was just too demanding of a task to put to anyone. Hell, considering the original soundtrack was already CD quality I don't know why they bothered.

That said, I feel like the PSX/Saturn version of Eternal Blue is wholly a better game. Removed the really dumb "pay to save" mechanic, and it doesn't change the story.

That said, i feel like the animations in the Sega CD version of EB are way more impressive for the hardware than the FMV in the PSX/Saturn version.
I don't blame people for finding the save system on EB needlessly painful but it wasn't enough of a hassle for me to kill my enjoyment of the game; outside of that, compared to the changes I'm aware of between SS SCD and SSSC I think the game benefits far less from the remake. Biggest improvement is the quality of the streaming audio, which honestly still didn't sound too bad when I played it through the TV speakers.

EB's a great game but given that one teleporter maze dungeon maybe 2/3 through the game I don't know if I'd be prepared to go back to it any time soon.
 

NovumVeritas

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Oct 26, 2017
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The in-game graphics aren't as good as what Square was doing on the SNES at the time and the cutscenes are a pale shadow of what they would do with the sequel. The plot wasn't any more complex than some of the other RPGs coming out around then like the FF games. The game's really short for the time and Luna being in your party for such a short time (which is something they fixed in the remake) hurt the emotional core of the plot. Soundtrack is great but lots of 16-bit RPGs have great soundtracks.

The localization was a big part of what made the Lunar games special. People just weren't localizing RPGs like that back then and it really stood out.

I never said it was a bad game. I like Lunar 1 a lot (although I like the remake more) but I love Lunar: EB and feel it's a huge improvement over the original, in a similar way to Persona 4 is a huge improvement over Persona 3. And like P4 vs P4, I totally understand some people liking the older game more.

You're being awful aggressive and dismissive of other opinions for someone who did a drive-by to complain that the thread topic was inferior to the older game.
Hey werezompire,

since I've read this thread, I'm now interested in the Lunar series.

Which version of Lunar 1 would you recommend ?
I've never played any Lunar game.
As you wrote that Eternal Blue is the superior game, should I skip Lunar 1 and start with EBC?
 

julian

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Oct 27, 2017
6,248
I would love a rerelease of the originals. I had a hard time getting into the remakes. Lots of odd changes.
 

julian

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Oct 27, 2017
6,248
Hey werezompire,

since I've read this thread, I'm now interested in the Lunar series.

Which version of Lunar 1 would you recommend ?
I've never played any Lunar game.
As you wrote that Eternal Blue is the superior game, should I skip Lunar 1 and start with EBC?
No. Do not skip the first game.
 

Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
20,497
The in-game graphics aren't as good as what Square was doing on the SNES at the time and the cutscenes are a pale shadow of what they would do with the sequel.
The cutscenes are ingame graphics, they are not FMVs. They are made with sprites and tiled backgrounds and everything you think in game graphics are. Lunar is one of the best showcases of the technology on the system.

The sequel bests Lunar: SS in every way, yeah, but that doesn't mean Lunar is a slouch. Again, compare to something like Vay, which is much more of an at-the-time RPG, and you'll see an enormous gulf in visual presentation.

The plot wasn't any more complex than some of the other RPGs coming out around then like the FF games. The game's really short for the time and Luna being in your party for such a short time (which is something they fixed in the remake) hurt the emotional core of the plot. Soundtrack is great but lots of 16-bit RPGs have great soundtracks.
So your bar for "bog standard average" are the final fantasy games? This is what I'm talking about, the standard for "average" is all sorts of skewed in this comparison. Lunar is very much a top-tier RPG for that era, calling is C-tier is just silly.

The localization was a big part of what made the Lunar games special. People just weren't localizing RPGs like that back then and it really stood out.
Lunar was huge in Japan before it ever got localized. It's not because people were starved for games or didn't know any better, world-wide Lunar was a hit (as much as an RPG could be a world-wide "hit" back in those days, granted), even in the land that produced the most RPGs at the time.
 

werezompire

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Oct 26, 2017
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Hey werezompire,

since I've read this thread, I'm now interested in the Lunar series.

Which version of Lunar 1 would you recommend ?
I've never played any Lunar game.
As you wrote that Eternal Blue is the superior game, should I skip Lunar 1 and start with EBC?
With Lunar 1, you've got these choices: original Sega CD, PS1 (or Saturn if you import), GBA, PSP, and iOS. GBA version is really pared down so that's automatically out. PSP version had its heart in the right place, but has some issues (which have been mentioned before). I think the PS1 version is a big improvement over the SCD version so I'd recommend that one. I haven't played it, but I hear the iOS version is mostly based on the PS1 so that could also be an option.

I played EB first and I think it works really well in reverse order. EB takes place a long time after the first one so the events of the first game are the stuff of legend - it gives the world a nice lived-in feel and could even make your more excited to play the original game afterwards. EB is only available on Sega CD or PS1 and there isn't a huge difference between the two, so probably grab PS1 since that's more accessible (since you can play it on a PS2 or PS3).
 

Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
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Hey werezompire,

since I've read this thread, I'm now interested in the Lunar series.

Which version of Lunar 1 would you recommend ?
I've never played any Lunar game.
As you wrote that Eternal Blue is the superior game, should I skip Lunar 1 and start with EBC?
Lunar 2 is a continuation of Lunar 1's story. It's not like the FF games where they aren't connected, Lunar 2 relies on you having played Lunar 1. There's a big twist in Lunar 2 that won't make sense if you haven't played Lunar 1.
 

NovumVeritas

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Oct 26, 2017
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Berlin
With Lunar 1, you've got these choices: original Sega CD, PS1 (or Saturn if you import), GBA, PSP, and iOS. GBA version is really pared down so that's automatically out. PSP version had its heart in the right place, but has some issues (which have been mentioned before). I think the PS1 version is a big improvement over the SCD version so I'd recommend that one. I haven't played it, but I hear the iOS version is mostly based on the PS1 so that could also be an option.

I played EB first and I think it works really well in reverse order. EB takes place a long time after the first one so the events of the first game are the stuff of legend - it gives the world a nice lived-in feel and could even make your more excited to play the original game afterwards. EB is only available on Sega CD or PS1 and there isn't a huge difference between the two, so probably grab PS1 since that's more accessible (since you can play it on a PS2 or PS3).
Nice thank you.

I will try to get Lunar 1 and Lunar EBC on PS1 then.
I like the classic 16 bit era RPGs, or games like Suikoden, Final Fantasy or Terranigma.

So I will enjoy this I hope.
 

KojiKnight

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,567
As you wrote that Eternal Blue is the superior game, should I skip Lunar 1 and start with EBC?
Lunar 2 works best played after 1. I know some people who've only played 2 and really enjoyed it, but some of the biggest plot points are direct continuations from the first game.

Give 1 a try first of you can get ahold of it. If you can't, for some reason, bring yourself to beat it, then give 2 a try. The level curve of 2 is a lot smoother, and with much fewer difficulty spikes.
 

Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
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Nice thank you.

I will try to get Lunar 1 and Lunar EBC on PS1 then.
I like the classic 16 bit era RPGs, or games like Suikoden, Final Fantasy or Terranigma.

So I will enjoy this I hope.
If you like the Final Fantasy games, you'll undoubtedly like Lunar, as it was the closest thing to a final fantasy game outside of the SNES at the time. They're much more similar than, say, Phantasy Star or Shining Force is to Final Fantasy (note: if you haven't played Phantasy Star IV or Shining Force II, you definitely need to).

Lunar is basically the precursor to Grandia.
 

DeadMoonKing

Member
Nov 6, 2017
168
I have both fond and not for memories of this game.
I don't remember what magazine it was, but I saw the game in a little blurb that had a couple of screenshots. The small article noted that the Sega CD classic was being ported and, being that I had fallen in love with anything and everything that looked like anime, I eagerly preordered it...only to wait through delay after delay after delay.

Still, there was a lot to play in mean time and I'll never forget the day the game finally did launch: I dragged my father after a long hard day of work to the mall and picked it up. (Dad got a ticket for running through a light in an effort to get it over with more quickly) By the time we had gotten home, it was too late to play it, so I watched a little bit of the included DVD and set it down next to my bed...only to step on it a few hours later when I woke up to use the restroom.

When I did finally get around to playing it, I really enjoyed the characters and localization, but found the gameplay pretty dull. I don't think the game could have possibly lived up to what I had made it in my mind at that point, but I definitely enjoyed my time with it overall.
 

NovumVeritas

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Oct 26, 2017
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Berlin
Lunar 2 works best played after 1. I know some people who've only played 2 and really enjoyed it, but some of the biggest plot points are direct continuations from the first game.

Give 1 a try first of you can get ahold of it. If you can't, for some reason, bring yourself to beat it, then give 2 a try. The level curve of 2 is a lot smoother, and with much fewer difficulty spikes.
I see, figured as much. I think Lunar 1 is available on the US PSN?
Should be easy to get it then.
The 1st has two CDs and EBC three CDs ? Is that correct?
 
OP
OP
aidan

aidan

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Oct 25, 2017
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I see, figured as much. I think Lunar 1 is available on the US PSN?
Should be easy to get it then.
The 1st has two CDs and EBC three CDs ? Is that correct?
Unfortunately, neither of them are available anywhere digitally and used copies of the PlayStation remakes are quite expensive.
 

NovumVeritas

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Oct 26, 2017
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Berlin
If you like the Final Fantasy games, you'll undoubtedly like Lunar, as it was the closest thing to a final fantasy game outside of the SNES at the time. They're much more similar than, say, Phantasy Star or Shining Force is to Final Fantasy (note: if you haven't played Phantasy Star IV or Shining Force II, you definitely need to).

Lunar is basically the precursor to Grandia.
I've enjoyed Grandia, when I've played the remaster version, which was released this year.
Sounds very nice, so this would be right up my alley.
I've only played PS I, when it was released on Switch via Sega Ages.
But I will definitely try PS IV and Shining Force II.
Shining Force II was an SRPG right?
 

werezompire

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Oct 26, 2017
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None of the Lunar games are on the PSN.

The cutscenes are ingame graphics, they are not FMVs. They are made with sprites and tiled backgrounds and everything you think in game graphics are. Lunar is one of the best showcases of the technology on the system.
You know that I know all this since you've heard me talk about how we specifically designed the cutscenes in our last game to emulate the SCD Lunar cutscene style. I meant gameplay graphics.

So your bar for "bog standard average" are the final fantasy games? This is what I'm talking about, the standard for "average" is all sorts of skewed in this comparison. Lunar is very much a top-tier RPG for that era, calling is C-tier is just silly.
I said "Lunar 1 is a pretty good game elevated to greatness by an excellent soundtrack & the amazing-for-its-time localization which let the characters & world shine. The CD tech which was still new also didn't hurt. It would not be anywhere near as beloved if it got a bog-standard 90's mediocre translation."

I never said it was bog-standard. I said "Pretty good core" + "Excellent Soundtrack" + "CD Tech" + "Amazing Localization" = Greatness. I said other games had bog-standard translations and Lunar didn't which was hugely in its favor.

Lunar was huge in Japan before it ever got localized. It's not because people were starved for games or didn't know any better, world-wide Lunar was a hit (as much as an RPG could be a world-wide "hit" back in those days, granted), even in the land that produced the most RPGs at the time.
Yes and they didn't need a great localization in Japan because it was already in Japanese. Not having a good localization would have hurt the game in English. I'm not sure why this is something you want to argue.
 

Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
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I've enjoyed Grandia, when I've played the remaster version, which was released this year.
Sounds very nice, so this would be right up my alley.
I've only played PS I, when it was released on Switch via Sega Ages.
But I will definitely try PS IV and Shining Force II.
Shining Force II was an SRPG right?
Yeah, Shining Force II is an SRPG, but the shining force SRPGs blend more typical RPG elements than traditional SRPGs. like there are towns and overworlds and things like that.

The spirit of Lunar and Grandia are very similar, in tone and style. The gameplay is pretty different, though, so don't expect that really cool battle system.
 

Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
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None of the Lunar games are on the PSN.



You know that I know all this since you've heard me talk about how we specifically designed the cutscenes in our last game to emulate the SCD Lunar cutscene style. I meant gameplay graphics.
because that's a goofy line to draw. "These graphics don't count" is absurd, especially when basically no other games at the time were pumping out those kinds of graphics.

Yes and they didn't need a great localization in Japan because it was already in Japanese. Not having a good localization would have hurt the game in English. I'm not sure why this is something you want to argue.
The comment that started all this, not from you, is that at it's heart, Lunar is a "c-tier game" that is made good because of the localization. The poster you quoted was saying that, without the localization, it's c-tier. It absolutely is not, the game was reveared in Japan. It's not that WD took a turd and polished it, Lunar was always not a C-tier game, the localization did not hold it up.

All this also ignores that several people do not like the localization. I like the lunar games in spite of their localization, not because of them. Ys Book I & II had a wholly better localization than Lunar anyways. Yet you don't see people talking that way about Ys.
 

My Cow Phelps

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Oct 25, 2017
124
I played both the SegaCD and PS1 versions. I prefer the visual and OST of the original but the characters are much more charming in the remake, not to mention the encounter rate and dungeon design of the original were very annoying.

Overall, i think the original was boring and the remake was fine. Eternal Blue is very good tho, one of my favorite endings in any game ever. And Grandia is easily the best game made by Game Arts imo.
 

Seyavesh

Member
Oct 25, 2017
179
love that boat song

also i cheated my way through the psx version because it was tedious but i seem to recall generally enjoying the dialogue eons ago when i played it
thanks working designs

in general the game just feels like a giant love letter to all of that whole era of late80s-mid90s jrpg stuff. like the ultimate verison of the pc-engine jrpg stuff thats was all over the place at the time.

it's very straightforward and cliche because of that, but it's also got insane amounts of charm/heart at the same time from the sheer amount of small character things happening all the time in it. you know, a love letter to the 'classic' tropes!
 

BigMack

Member
Oct 27, 2017
395
My mom let me go in EB Games (?) on my bday in 1999. I got this, Spryo 1, Driver and Resident Evil 2.

This game left such a mark that it's still one of my favorite RPG's right up there with FF9, Super Mario RPG, Xenogears and now DQ 11.

I've never played Lunar 2 bc I loved the characters so much I didn't want to play it since it had all new people. (I would still like to find time someday and play through both of them back to back)

When I saw the thread title I immediately started humming the intro credits, then the Meribia theme and right onto the standard battle music. Those songs are as burned into my memory as World 1-1 from SMB
 

Karish

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Oct 25, 2017
1,055
My memory of the title cinematics is ghibli level. The actual thing is definitely not.
 

KingM

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Oct 28, 2017
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What’s the easiest way to play this series outside of hoping for re release
Lunar SSS has been remade and ported a number of times. The iOS version was pretty alright when I played it a few years ago but I'm not sure if it's even available. There's also a PSP remake that's generally cheaper although it's a bit different than SSD or SSSC. Eternal Blue has only been released on Sega CD, Saturn and PS1.
 

werezompire

Zeboyd Games
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Oct 26, 2017
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All this also ignores that several people do not like the localization. I like the lunar games in spite of their localization, not because of them. Ys Book I & II had a wholly better localization than Lunar anyways. Yet you don't see people talking that way about Ys.
I get that not everyone likes that early Working Designs style, but it was a revelation compared to most of the competition. Your average RPG of the 16-bit & PS1-era was barely intelligible (games like Breath of Fire 2, Robotrek and most of the Enix SNES games), very stilted (most of Square's PS1 output), heavily compromised (Persona 1 which cut out a huge part of the game among other things), or a buggy mess (Lufia 2 & Suikoden 2). Even the better ones like FF6 or Phantasy Star IV were mostly just competent. An RPG where all the characters & NPCs had a lot of personality & made jokes was amazing to receive back then.
 

JohnF

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Jan 19, 2019
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*Stares at avatar* It's fair to say I have a deep, deep love of this game (and the Sega CD original).
 

RedSwirl

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Oct 25, 2017
4,976
I'd only heard of this game on and off for years until the PSP version came out and I heard it was actually made by Game Arts, and Grandia II is one of my favorite games so I tried out the PSP demo a while back. I thought it was nice, the writing seemed good and the gameplay seemed snappy, but sort of put it on my shelf of "games I might buy someday". Which version is the best though? The iOS version seems like the easiest one to get and it's only $7. It looks like it's based on one of the earlier versions though, possibly even the Sega CD version. Is there a good breakdown between all versions?

And looking at Game Arts' library, it looks like I need to track down more of their games in general, like Gungriffon and such.
 

Rotini Noodle

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Apr 3, 2018
472
Hung the map on my bedroom wall, jammed to the CD while playing the MMO NexusTK, loved every minute of Lunar. Can't ever replicate those feel good times but happy for those who might discover this gem.
 

BlueManifest

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Oct 25, 2017
6,711
Lunar SSS has been remade and ported a number of times. The iOS version was pretty alright when I played it a few years ago but I'm not sure if it's even available. There's also a PSP remake that's generally cheaper although it's a bit different than SSD or SSSC. Eternal Blue has only been released on Sega CD, Saturn and PS1.
Ah wish they would release both of them for switch
 

KingM

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,191
I'd only heard of this game on and off for years until the PSP version came out and I heard it was actually made by Game Arts, and Grandia II is one of my favorite games so I tried out the PSP demo a while back. I thought it was nice, the writing seemed good and the gameplay seemed snappy, but sort of put it on my shelf of "games I might buy someday". Which version is the best though? The iOS version seems like the easiest one to get and it's only $7. It looks like it's based on one of the earlier versions though, possibly even the Sega CD version. Is there a good breakdown between all versions?

And looking at Game Arts' library, it looks like I need to track down more of their games in general, like Gungriffon and such.
The visuals for the iOS version are from the PS1/Saturn remake.
 

Mackaveli

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Oct 25, 2017
612
What's the best platform to play this on?
I wish I had Lunar 1 on PS1. Only have Eternal blue. Have Lunar 1 on PSP.
 

KojiKnight

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Oct 25, 2017
9,567
Really confused why my words are being used to argue with someone else?

Let's go over in detail why my opinion of Lunar SSC is that it's an average jrpg and that it pails I'm comparison to it's sequel...

"Bog standard story": Fridge the princess(goddess), become a knight, save the girl. It's one of the oldest story telling archetypes in the world, and this game doesn't do anything new or super interesting with the premise. They did a bit better in the remake by not immediately throwing Luna aside, but it's only a short reprieve.

Simple characters: All of the characters are pretty one dimensional. You have your "good girl", your tsundere, your jock, the cocky smart guy, and Your ultra virtuous hero. Alex has zero emotional growth throughout the entire game. He's 100% the same character at the end as he is in the beginning. There other characters fair a little better, though Nash is the only one I'd say actually becomes something more than who he was at the start.

Linear progression: While you are occasionally rewarded with new towns people dialogue, and you have to do tons of convoluted nonsense to get the bromides, the game itself is incredibly linear and there are few real secrets or extra dungeons or even post game.

Combat and leveling: the difficulty of the game spikes in awful ways, to the point that even early game grinding of long, tedious, and often results in BS game overs where you lose a ton of progress. Bosses scaling to your level is good (lunar 2 does it better) as it gives you some challenge, but it can also mean you can't just level yourself out of a tough boss fight.

That's not to say I hate this game, far from it. It was a major game of my childhood, I just don't think it stands up to the test of time, not by itself, and nothing to the degree the sequel does. The presentation is great, but every time I try to replay this game, I give up and play the sequel instead.
 

Linkura

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Oct 25, 2017
18,061
Way to make me feel old y'all

Still one of my all-time faves. EBC is fun, but there's just something intangible about SSSC that makes it extremely special for me.
 

KojiKnight

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Oct 25, 2017
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I will say this, Galleon is a much much better villian than Zophar, expanding his backstory is the single thing the psp version did right in a sea of poor decisions.
 

Failburger

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Dec 3, 2018
796
The only thing I remember from this game is a scene at a hot springs and getting a cutscene is all the dudes posing naked
 

LibrarianGMR

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Oct 30, 2017
27
I played Lunar: The Silver Star first on Sega CD and fell in love with it right on the spot. I had never played RPGs before (I did try a friend's copy of Dragon Quest and died on the first monster encounter) so the genre was new to me. I was lured in by the anime-inspired visual design but what made this game so spectacular were its wonderful cast of characters. I loved each and every one of them--Nall, Luna, Alex, Nash (especially so), Mia (triple loved her)--and by the end of the game, I was eager to seek out more RPGs. Lunar really opened my eyes and taught me that video games could be more than just getting high scores. They were vehicles for a level of storytelling I had never seen before at the time. Lunar would eventually lead me to the Final Fantasy series!

Then Lunar 2: Eternal Blue was announced and I could barely contain my excitement for it. Though I was a hgue fan of the first game, I liked the second because of the story and how it was a little darker and edgier than the first. There was still plenty of room for levity and I enjoyed all of the interactions relating to Lucia being acclimated to civilized society (I still love the sequence where Jean and Lemina play dress up with Lucia only to beat up Ronfar and Hiro, lol). Lunar 2 was also considerably more difficult, the Borgan fight being a real son of a bitch if you didn't grind out levels. And the Pay to Save system was really stupid--so much so that Working Designs owned up to it being a bad idea.

Working Designs would be the first time I ever wrote a fan letter and getting a response back from Victor Ireland made young me's day. I even forced my parents to by Lunar merch for my birthday one year, getting a sweet Eternal Blue wrist watch out of it. When word got out that Lunar and its sequel were getting PS1 remasters, I ran over to my local EB Games to pre-order. Silver Star Story would prove to be a minor Duke Nukem Forever to me because I remember it getting constantly delayed. I think it didn't come out until half a year past its initial release date. I couldn't be mad, though, since it got me replaying my favorite RPGs of all time. The strategy guides they released along side each game were amazing because they contained a crap load of behind the scenes materials and funny little cartoons that went above and beyond what a guide typically offered.

I'm so glad there are people out there with fond memories of this series. Lunar and its sequel are the two main reasons why I want the PlayStation 5 to be backwards compatible (or at the very least, make them PSN releases) because I so badly want to play through these wonderful, wonderful gems again.

Thank you, OP, for bringing back warm and fuzzy memories. :)