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

angelgrievous

Member
Nov 8, 2017
4,075
Ohio
Great game. Never played the sequel although it sounds like I should.

I'm actually in the process of renewing my PS1 collection so I'll be getting them eventually.

Off topic question: How is the Arc the Lad Collection? I remember wanting it really badly after getting Lunar but never did. Those games are all on PSN as well.
 

RedSwirl

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,976
The conversation surrounding this game sounds a lot like that surrounding Grandia II: bog-standard JRPG story and linear progression held up by above-average English localization (though in GII's case, also an innovative combat system).
 

werezompire

Zeboyd Games
Verified
Oct 26, 2017
3,103
Off topic question: How is the Arc the Lad Collection? I remember wanting it really badly after getting Lunar but never did. Those games are all on PSN as well.
Arc 1 is okay and short.
Arc 2 is excellent and really long.
Arc 3 isn't as popular but I liked it. It's more like a standard RPG than a SRPG compared to the other games.

Arc 2 is a direct sequel to Arc 1 so you should play them in order. You an also unlock some bonuses if you have Arc 1 save data (including a bonus character if you do the optional dungeon in Arc 1).
 

angelgrievous

Member
Nov 8, 2017
4,075
Ohio
Arc 1 is okay and short.
Arc 2 is excellent and really long.
Arc 3 isn't as popular but I liked it. It's more like a standard RPG than a SRPG compared to the other games.

Arc 2 is a direct sequel to Arc 1 so you should play them in order. You an also unlock some bonuses if you have Arc 1 save data (including a bonus character if you do the optional dungeon in Arc 1).
Awesome, thanks for the reply.

Probably gonna go ahead and pick up the first one tonight and try to get through it before Star Ocean Thursday.
 

SageShinigami

Member
Oct 27, 2017
16,470
So the thread is called "let's celebrate this game" and for whatever reason someone charged in wanting to "debate" about it being a C-tier RPG. No. Go away.

Anyhow, Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete is, alongside Suikoden, one of my favorite games of all time. It's just this beautiful fusion of old-school gaming and 90s anime, with a gorgeous fantasy world. It's tropey looking back, but given when it was created I feel like it invented those tropes, or at least executed them better than anyone else at the time.

And say what you want about Working Designs but they released such a beautiful package for that game. This giant box filled with all these goodies to help it feel special.

Nothing frustrates me more than this franchise not surviving to PS2 and PS3 era.
 

NeoZeedeater

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,591
I did buy PS1 Lunar SSSC back then but it didn't have the same impact the Sega CD games did for me (they were new and more boundary pushing in the 16-bit era, and there was more competition on PS1 so it's to be expected). It was still nice, though, and Working Designs went all out with the packaging.
 

pezzie

Member
Oct 27, 2017
990
I first got into Lunar playing it on Sega CD at a friend's house. I was so impressed with it I ended up making my parents buy me a Genesis + Sega CD. In retrospect one of the brattiest I've ever been, as I only ever got like 3 games on those systems (was an SNES kid).

When I first heard of the PSX remake on EGM that was coming, I was super excited. Bought it day 1 at the local EB.

I love this series. The sequel is undoubtedly the better game, but Lunar 1 will always have that special place in my heart and was pretty much the first non Final Fantasy RPG series I ever really got into.

I still have the PSX version of both games, I think it's time I ripped and emulated them. I no longer have a working PS1, but I do have a PS2 somewhere. Not sure my TV has non HDMI inputs anymore though so I'd need to get an adapter, so emulating them would still be the best solution for me.
 

KojiKnight

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,567
So the thread is called "let's celebrate this game" and for whatever reason someone charged in wanting to "debate" about it being a C-tier RPG. No. Go away.
It's funny how disingenuous some people are. I never once used the word "debate" (nice loaded word) and it's really sad how people are gate keeping discussion ESPECIALLY since I never even a single time in this entire thread called it a bad game.

You can celebrate a game while still discussing it's faults. You can celebrate a game by discussing it's sequels. I've listed several things throughout this thread about what I like about this game as well. So no, I don't plan on getting out of this thread. If you don't want to engage with me, that's fine, but at least have ability to actually leave me alone instead of trying to call me out without even having the courage to quote me.
 
Which version should I play? tl;dr Play it on Sega CD or PlayStation New
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aidan

aidan

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,132
Lots of people asking which version of the game they should play, so I thought I'd make a concise rundown of each version, and the associated pros/cons.

tl;dr The Sega CD and PlayStation are equally good starting points, but expensive. The best version is the one you can afford.

The Best



Lunar: The Silver Star (Sega CD)

The OG. This is where it all started. You get the full Lunar experience, and some players prefer the original story to the tweaks made in the remake. Its most notable feature over the PlayStation version are the stylized, super cool graphical cut scenes. It mostly comes down to your system preference. Want something a bit older? This will do the trick.

Pros: The original experience
Cons: Very expensive, no digital release



Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete (PlayStation)

This is my personal preference, though many people, including in this thread, prefer the Sega CD original. Lunar: SSSC builds off the foundation laid by the original, but updates the graphics, makes story changes (which some people like, some don't), includes full anime cut-scenes, a new soundtrack, and lots of other little additions/changes. If you're new to the series, you probably won't notice any of the changes made against the Sega CD version.

Unfortunately, it's never been made digital, so to play it you'll have to buy an expensive copy on Ebay or hope your local games shop has it decently priced—they probably won't.

Pros: A robust remake with lots of added content
Cons: Very expensive, no digital release, some people don't like the changes from the Sega CD version


The Rest



Lunar Legend (GBA)

A true and proper demake. I actually like this version a lot, but more as a novelty for fans than a starting point for the series. It's super easy, but getting Lunar one your Game Boy is fun, and the combat is such a breeze that it can be a nice break between meatier RPGs. It also has more new story changes.

Pros: Short, easy, cute
Cons: Expensive, and you'll probably end up with a bad repo cart, no digital release



Lunar: Silver Star Harmony (PSP)

As others in the thread have said, there was obviously a lot of heart and care put into this remake, but a lot of small changes (like a wholly unnecessary new prologue) and a generic localization keep this from replacing any of the older versions. This one has a digital release for only $15 (CAD) on PSN.

Pros: Cheap, nice graphics, lots of love and attention put into it
Cons: Doesn't have the same heart the earlier games are known for, very easy




Lunar Silver Star Story Touch (iOS)

This is a weird hybrid version of earlier releases. It seems to use the graphics/structure of the PlayStation release, but with the PSP localization instead of the original PlayStation localization. From what I can tell, it's fine, but it's a bit of a Frankenstein's Monster, and whether it's right for you will probably come down to a) affordability and b) whether you like playing retro JRPGs on your phone. It's only $10 (CAD) on the App Store.

Pros: Cheap, playable on your iPhone and iPad
Cons: Not available on Android, a weird mismash of earlier games


The Wildcards



Lunar: The Silver Star (Windows & Saturn)

Go for it. I don't really know anything about these versions other than that it was only ever released in Japan and Korea and I can't imagine they're easy to get a hold of. The Windows release has horrible "upgraded" graphics that run through a tub of vaseline glued to your GPU.

Pros: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Cons: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 

werezompire

Zeboyd Games
Verified
Oct 26, 2017
3,103
IIRC, the Saturn version is basically identical to the PS1 version with each version having slight advantages. It's not a Grandia situation where the Saturn version is noticeably better.

I do remember though that the Saturn version of Lunar: EB had dungeon elemental affinity which could be manipulated by abilities. That's not in the localized PS1 version; not sure if it's in the Japanese PS1 version.
 

Replicant

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,686
MN

Also, you guys are nuts. PS1 Lunar 1 is WAY better than SCD Lunar 1 (although either version of Lunar:EB is better than both).
Nah..it really isn’t. The Sega CD game is better and an overall better and tighter gameplay experience. Also has a way better soundtrack.

The Saturn version is better than the PSX version for its better music.
 

werezompire

Zeboyd Games
Verified
Oct 26, 2017
3,103
One thing I remember about the SCD versions is that the music sounded great when the disk was played in a CD player, but the sound quality was noticeably weaker when actually playing the game. I'm guessing the SCD/Genesis' default audio-visual cables weren't doing the game any favors. Or maybe I just had a bad TV.
 

SageShinigami

Member
Oct 27, 2017
16,470
It's funny how disingenuous some people are. I never once used the word "debate" (nice loaded word) and it's really sad how people are gate keeping discussion ESPECIALLY since I never even a single time in this entire thread called it a bad game.

You can celebrate a game while still discussing it's faults. You can celebrate a game by discussing it's sequels. I've listed several things throughout this thread about what I like about this game as well. So no, I don't plan on getting out of this thread. If you don't want to engage with me, that's fine, but at least have ability to actually leave me alone instead of trying to call me out without even having the courage to quote me.
"Courage" . Lol.

Seriously tho, for someone talking about disingenousness, where did I say you said it was a bad game. You called it a C+ game, which is arguably the same thing, but whatever.

It's just bad form, dude. I made a thread about this ages ago, though people claimed it wasn't a thing people did seriously. I asked why someone would tear something else down to build something else up. "Eh, this game was mediocre but it's sequel was great" would belong in a more even-handed thread. That's not to say you can't be critical of the game, but a thread celebrating a game's anniversary I'd think would be more centered around praise for it?
 

werezompire

Zeboyd Games
Verified
Oct 26, 2017
3,103
Sorry I got in an argument earlier.

On a more positive note, I love the character art in these games and would love to see that particular anime style in more JRPGs these days.
 

Bane

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
1,854
I have a small list of games where I was genuinely sad when I finished them that my time with the characters was over, Silver Star Story and Eternal Blue Completes are two of them.

Though I admit I had to use a Game Shark to beat the first game, I could not beat that sewer dragon for the life of me and became quite turned off of the game. Whenever I play it I use cheats to do so again. I'm just there for the story and characters.
 
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aidan

aidan

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,132
Sorry I got in an argument earlier.

On a more positive note, I love the character art in these games and would love to see that particular anime style in more JRPGs these days.
I think the character designs were one of the reason I was so drawn to the game in the first place. Thanks to their roots in the early '90s, they're simpler than a lot of the designs we got on the PSX from Nomura, etc., but with just enough touches to feel like distinct characters. They felt real to me in a way Cloud, etc. didn't.

This is a great quote from Kei Shigema about how he opened the game in a cold village to ensure Luna would be properly dressed.

 

P-Bo

Member
Jun 17, 2019
383
A fantastic personally-inspiring game that is sadly lost to time--I consider this to be one of the greatest games ever made. Eternal Blue is better tho.


Also, you guys are nuts. PS1 Lunar 1 is WAY better than SCD Lunar 1 (although either version of Lunar:EB is better than both).
=)
 

Mejilan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,133
I love both games to death. Ultimately, I prefer playing the PSOne versions of both games, but I will handily grant fans of the Sega CD version of Lunar 1 that it has, for the most part, a vastly better OST. I'm still baffled over all the OST changes made to the PSOne version of Lunar 1 (moreso than the story changes), and over the years remained chagrined that ports and remakes continued to use the new tunes instead of the vastly superior Sega CD tunes. The battle theme, in particular, got a massive, massive downgrade, IMO.

Shame that the PSP remake of Lunar 1 was balls. The graphics and music all got really nice upgrades, but it played closer to the shitty GBA remake than it did the vastly superior Sega CD and PSOne versions. The GBA and PSP versions removed all difficulty from the game essentially by trivializing resource management, a big part of what made the Sega CD and PSOne versions of Lunar 1 and 2 so compelling to actually play.

Ah well. The older versions still hold up, even if I wish we could somehow smash the PSP version's lush graphics and higher fidelity music with the gameplay of the older versions.
 

Skulldead

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,458
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.
Are you sure about that ? My memory are a little foggy. I remember having much more difficult time with bosses on the second game then the first game even if the game scale to alex level in the first lunar.

Ho yeah i did go watch a couple of video, it was the original Sega-CD of lunar 2 that piss me off to no end, the remake was still challenging but much more managable.
 

Hexer

Member
Oct 30, 2017
763
Another God-Tier RPG that I played during the PS1 era. What an amazing game. One of the best soundtracks of all time probly. I'd really love to be able to go through this game again!
 

PonsArak

Member
Oct 27, 2017
37
I loved Lunar 1 and 2 on Sega CD, and I love the Playstation remakes of both as well. Eternal Blue has some of the most epic post game content post story ever. I love this series. I miss Working Designs :(

Also I love my Ghaleon punching doll that I still have on my shelf to the right of my computer in the packaging :D
 
Oct 25, 2017
563
Wakayama
Lunar Eternal Blue for Sega CD is and always will be my favorite game of all time. I played it at just the right time (I was 14) and it left a huge impression on me. I love the story and characters so much even though I recognize that they’re cheesy! Lunar is the only fictional world I have ever genuinely dreamed of living in for real.

Lunar for Life!
 

yuhr33

Member
May 19, 2018
1,279
Gah! I had this. Got rid of it a long while ago. Completely regret it.

Also, this is an A-tier RPG. It’s perfect.
 

Krejlooc

Indie Game Dev
Verified
Oct 27, 2017
20,497
IIRC, the Saturn version is basically identical to the PS1 version with each version having slight advantages. It's not a Grandia situation where the Saturn version is noticeably better.

I do remember though that the Saturn version of Lunar: EB had dungeon elemental affinity which could be manipulated by abilities. That's not in the localized PS1 version; not sure if it's in the Japanese PS1 version.
The main difference between the Saturn versions and the PSX version is the quality of the FMVs. The common, original saturn version has much worse quality FMVs, because the saturn uses true motion codec for the FMVs. There is a second release, though, called Lunar: Silver Star Story MPEG-ban on the saturn which requires the use of a special VCD add-on for the saturn, which gives the game much higher quality FMVs, but it's rare and expensive and not worth hunting down at all.

There is really no reason at all to get the saturn versions of the game over the PSX version, even the MPEG version. The PSX FMVs are fine quality.
 

Tigerfog

Member
Oct 28, 2017
156
Montreal
Even though I'm not a fan of the WD translations at all, I can appreciate the fact that it's thanks to them that I got to play the Lunar games back when I couldn't read Japanese.

To echo krejlooc's opinion about the music, the original Japanese opening song is freakin' kickass.
The lyrics and melody are more serious and darker and fits the original Lunar 1 (SCD) game's atmosphere perfectly.

I also feel the need to point out how amazing the compositions of the original Lunar 1's artworks were. I believe Kubooka was the artist behind the first version of Lunar.



 

MegamanFreak

Member
Oct 27, 2017
72
This takes me back. I just graduated from high school in 99, so i had some graduation money to blow, so I grabbed two things: My first CD player and a copy of Lunar SSSC. I had never heard of the series before, but the VERY NICE box art was all it took me to give it a try. I fell in love almost imediately with the story and chars. Also, the music CD that came with it was my very first CD that I ever owned, and i listened to it almost every day for a month or more. I love the sequal even more, and i try to play it at least once every year or so, but the first game is still very very special to me.
 

_id

Member
Apr 18, 2018
205
I remember playing this in 2000 about a year after it’s release on the ps1. I remember this game being 80 bucks at eb games back in the day. The box art and that thick case made me interested. I never did beat the game but from what I did play it was awesome.
 

Krejlooc

Indie Game Dev
Verified
Oct 27, 2017
20,497
To echo krejlooc's opinion about the music, the original Japanese opening song is freakin' kickass.
The lyrics and melody are more serious and darker and fits the original Lunar 1 (SCD) game's atmosphere perfectly.
Funnily enough, the jpn lyrics to that song are a love song.

In my dreams, I kiss you softly
When I want to spoil you, I wish on the stars.
I want to tell you of the magic of love
My love for you, let it be carried out fast on the wind!

Tell him...
My feelings...

My heart is still aching so,
Because you've left on a journey!

<bridge>

Flap your wings!

Now, spread your arms towards the heavens,
Fly high in the wind, make eternity into a moment,
Magic, my heart, is within your arms,
Now, run back to me, embrace me,
Kiss me!
It's the one part of the WD localization I really like. They changed it from a love song to a song about people preparing for battle.
 

B.K.

Member
Oct 31, 2017
4,290
It's too bad Victor Ireland wasn't able to work out the rights and get it on the PSN, like he wanted to. I wonder what he's up to these days. Does Gaijinworks even exist anymore? I can't even remember the last game they put out.
 
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aidan

aidan

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,132
It's too bad Victor Ireland wasn't able to work out the rights and get it on the PSN, like he wanted to. I wonder what he's up to these days. Does Gaijinworks even exist anymore? I can't even remember the last game they put out.
I contacted Gaijinworks to see if I could chat with Vic for my piece, but didn't receive a reply, so... who knows. These definitely deserve a wider release on PSN, though.
 

RedSwirl

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,976
So I read the HG101 article which looks like a deeper rundown of all versions. Based on it, iOS might be the way to go, at least from a practicality standpoint. HG101 says it's mostly just the PlayStation version, but with the music, FMVs, and song vocals from the PSP version.


"The iOS version was released in 2012 by publisher SoMoGa. It’s mostly based off the PlayStation version of Silver Star Story, with added point-and-touch controls for movement. It looks pretty good, though the iOS status bar can’t be removed, and the high resolution text looks mismatched with the rest of the blurry, low resolution graphics. However, the music is from Silver Star Harmony. Most of the text is from the Working Designs translation, but the songs and voice acting in the video scenes are from the XSeed version."
Also, this article implies there are actually four different versions of the text for this game: Working Designs did the Sega CD and PS1 versions, but it suggests the text was rewritten for the PS1 version. Can someone confirm? Then they say the game was retranslated for the GBA version, and then retranslated again on PSP. Supposedly the GBA version is the only bland one, whereas the PSP translation is in the spirit of the Working Designs translation (the description matches what I remember playing the PSP demo) but might not be quite as good.
 

SolVanderlyn

Member
Oct 28, 2017
8,366
My best friend in elementary school introduced me to this game. I remember going over his house and playing it together very vividly... one of the games that got me really into JRPGs.

Alex's journey into becoming a Dragonmaster is a classic fairy tale done right. Everything about it was the heroic knight saves the princess and defeats the evil sorcerer and also dragons tropes incarnate, but they were given a fresh coat of paint with the 90's anime aesthetic, a lovable cast, pitch perfect pacing, good gameplay and great execution overall. It's essentially the King Arthur tale of my childhood. When Alex finally donned the Dragonmaster garb and became one, man...! I got goosebumps like I haven't felt since.

Ghaleon is also a supremely awesome character, who becomes even better in the second game.
 

Vern

Member
Oct 26, 2017
4,115
Still one of my top 5 of all time. Wish it would come to Switch somehow. First and only game to make me cry. I loved these characters so much.
 
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aidan

aidan

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,132
I've updated the OP with some new resources, including the Hardcore Gaming 101 article RedSwirl linked to, which is a great resource, especially for those trying to figure out which version they want to play. Also added some media.

Also, this article implies there are actually four different versions of the text for this game: Working Designs did the Sega CD and PS1 versions, but it suggests the text was rewritten for the PS1 version. Can someone confirm? Then they say the game was retranslated for the GBA version, and then retranslated again on PSP. Supposedly the GBA version is the only bland one, whereas the PSP translation is in the spirit of the Working Designs translation (the description matches what I remember playing the PSP demo) but might not be quite as good.
That's correct. The Sega CD/PSX/GBA/PSP versions all have different localizations. I'd say the GBA localization is simple, rather than dry, and that the PSP translation is fine, just... dull. For better or worse, it certainly doesn't have the character of the WD localizations, even if that were what they were going for.
 

Kayotix

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,519
Top 3 RPGs of all time IMO, i have both Lunar SSSC and Lunar 2 CEs both on my shelf. Working Designs did some amazing stuff
 

cj_iwakura

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,740
Coral Springs, FL
For me, the biggest reason the original is superior is the sense of exploration and wonder. The world maps in the original are MASSIVE and sprawling.





The remakes get progressively smaller until they're basically paint by numbers.


Same reason I prefer Luna staying behind. Alex has to leave her behind to grow, it's a massive point in the story.

The remake wasn't nearly as changed, but it still has things I dislike, namely Zophar's ridiculous look in EBC. (And the removal of the Star Dragon Guardian.)


Also, Ghaleon's final form in the original is super badass.


 

Aexact

Member
Oct 30, 2017
1,562
I played Lunar SSSC after the fact and if it weren’t for the charming, dated localization, I don’t think it would’ve stood out to me. Reading through, it sounds like the game was a pioneer in many aspects but in 1999, FFVII had already come out. In fact, I remember as a kid telling my friend “oh, so the graphics have to be like this to have all this voice acting”. The classic heroic tale didn’t leave much of an impression on me either.

I recall enjoying the classic love tale from EB more though. I remember watching some video that came along with the EB game about the process of making the game which probably helped appreciate stuff like Lucia’s changing AI and the bubblegum? Baseball bat! Trials of localization. Years later, that’s the defining story about liberties with translation that sticks with me and certainly endeared me to WD’s approach.

... The bromides were kinda skeevy, as PG cheesecake as they were. I think I was more lenient with EB since there was a wider range of what constitutes a bromide. Very mildly so.
 

XboxCowdry

Member
Sep 1, 2019
219
The best RPG's ever made. I didn't much care for the remasters mind both on the Saturn/PS. I didn't like the new art or the new music in the 1st game and found having less animation in the battles in the 2nd game (to the Mega CD version) to be disappointing.

No one made a better RPG than GameArts such a shame to see the corps is hardly a team these days *cries*
 

Adathir

Member
Oct 25, 2017
382
My brothers and I love this game and it is only beaten out by Lunar 2. I picked it up at a gaming store here not long after it came out. The box really stood out so I took a look at the back of it and I was sold. Everything in that game from the characters to the music was perfect to me. It really is one of the most important games to me and I still go back to watch the making of or listen to the soundtrack whenever I have the chance.

I was drawn back into it again a few years back when I manage to pick up the Sega CD and Saturn versions of the game to add to the collection. I would like to play through those versions as well but my Saturn and CD and put away in storage so I'll have to settle for the PS1 versions. I would have loved to see a release on modern consoles to simplify things for me.