A while back Konami sent out a special survey asking their fans what games they like and why they liked them. Well whatever for you ask? How else is the company supposed to know what to put focus on in the future? A few big names have vanished, including Yoshitaka Murayama, Koji Igarashi, and now Metal Gear producer Hideo Kojima.
So now that the guys who helped put the company on the map have moved on with life, Konami is going through somewhat of a "transition period", so to speak. It's only natural and healthy for them to get in touch with the rest of us to get some feedback.
Upon that feedback there were many big names included in the survey which you should be familiar with in case you missed it. Castlevania, Contra, Gradius, and of course the main topic of this article, that being Suikoden. Pronounced Swee-ko-den for those who have had a hard time dealing with it, the series has turned more than just a few heads since its birth back in 1995.
Konami had released their first title, and making a a few waves with the fans, a second title was more than just in order. It was a dire necessity.
Suikoden 2 is the lost in time gem that many RPG fans have never heard of, and seriously need to take a second look at. This is the best of the best when it comes to quality RPG games, and the most talked about in the history of the series.
Both were released on the PSX back in the 90s, but the second title didn't get the attention it needed due to a limited number of copies being produced. The PS2 was about to take hold, and the company seemed to want to move in that direction at the time.
Fortunately thanks to a well known format called PSN (Playstation Network), you can either relive those moments, or experience them for the first time in your life. Either way it should be on your "to do" list. Suikoden II has it all. A deep and rich story that will draw you in. Love, hate, betrayal, and more mini quests and things to do in the game than you may even have time for.
But here is the problem. Again, it didn't get the much needed attention it deserved.
Launching right after Final Fantasy VIII, along with Konami sticking to a 2D world rather than moving into 3D, the market overlooked Suikoden 2 along side of having only a limited number of copies produced for it for North America. Still, those who managed to land this precious gem in their living room know how great it is, and it even surpassed "Beyond the Beyond!" as the best RPG game for the Playstation console.
How about collecting 108 characters to use in the game? Yeah, talk about a lot. So many to use and choose from that you will not get bored anytime soon. Let's see any other role playing game do that number.
The cast of games these days have almost completely left the old world 2D style that was such a big hit in the PSX, Genesis, and Super Nintendo days gone by, and Suikoden seeming like "Game of Thrones" is both cheap to buy and will last you until the cows come home. Yes I know what some of you might be thinking.
You've seen one JRPG game then you've seen them all. Not like this you haven't, and Suikoden takes the issue of straining and gouging your eyes out trying to stay awake while you build your characters all up just so you can survive a bit longer.
While some of the bosses can be challenging and a bit hard (*cough - Luca - cough*), you really don't suffer from the pain and agony of trying so hard to level up your members just to stay alive when fighting enemies. Also a bit of luck coming from the automatic attack system, along with some really cool rune and combo attacks you get to use from your party.
Are you sold yet? You should be, but there is still something missing from all of this. Oh yeah....they don't make them like they used to I'm afraid.
Rather than sitting around trying to recapture past glory, it is the call of nature from folks like me, and the Suikoden Revival Movement to try and raise as much awareness to the cause of both getting others like you to hop on board, as well as showing Konami that there is still a market for the series, and that it shouldn't be abandoned as it has been for years now.
Thankfully they have and are releasing both the PS1 and PS2 titles for you can I to enjoy once again, but what about the future of the series?
Yoshitaka Murayama was the head member of the production team, and has moved on unfortunately. So what would be a great idea is for Konami to at least sub-contract a new game out to another company. Falcom comes to mind, another great company I love so much, and would be a logical prospect.
Still, your voice and support are what makes things happen, just as it did the PSN releases, so shall a new game altogether. I invite you to join the rest of us at SRM (Suikoden Revival Movement) and add yours to the rest of us.
The more the better, and if we are lucky enough, you just might be playing a new Suikoden game in your future. Check out some game play footage below for those of you who have yet to bask in the glory of what has to be the best RPG game ever created.