The way you make progress in the story is kusoge-levels of bad. Why the fuck would anyone make such a stupidly redundant way of unlocking new areas when you have the fool-proof method of making new locations appear as the plot demands? I don’t understand. If they gave us a simple list of available locations like Disgaea, this game would actually be great (judging from what I’ve experienced so far). But no, automatically unlocking new areas as the plot demands is too mainstream, apparently.
You basically start off with 2 locations on the world map: the place where you had your first mandatory plot battle, and a town you go to for various facilities. Any area that has a event scene will be marked by a star. What do you do when there are no more event scenes in either location? You search for new areas in hope that they are accompanied by an event (and they usually are, when you first find them). How do you find new areas? You have to go to the Guild to perform a search. You will be brought to the world map, where you can move a cursor around and press the X button to check if there’s a location on the part of the map that your cursor is pointing to. That’s right, you manually search the map, and it doesn’t help that the map is blurry as heck and you can barely tell whether something is supposed to be a landmark or not. Oh yeah, performing a search costs WP, and you can only search in unlocked sections of the map (unlocking new sections of the world map also costs WP). Even if you fail and find nothing, your WP will still be used up. To make things worse, WP is a rather scarce currency, obtainable only by some event sequences, completing a “collection,” or converting from CP.
The event sequences that give WP are limited, of course. The WP you get from completing collections are also limited, as there are only so many collections to fill out (difficulty varies, from “getting 8 slime jellies” to “collecting every type of weapon”). Converting CP to WP is the only way to get more of the latter should you screw up, and you only get CP for every chain combo in battle that is a multiple of 50. It’s not like you get a lot either, I got up to around 70 for my combo, and received a measly 2 CP. There’s also other things you can acquire by using CP, making it all the more precious. The solution? Save an reload lots when searching. Or use a guide.
Oh, and even if you use a guide and find the correct location, it’s not like the search will succeed either. To successfully find a new location, you need to hear a rumour about it first in the Guild. No rumour, no location. You start with some default rumours, but to get more you’ll need new aliases. To acquire those, you’ll need to complete some of the aforementioned collections. The problem is, the game doesn’t ever tell you what alias you need to get the rumour to find the next location that has a story sequence, so you’re stuck trying to fill out collections in hopes that they are the right ones unless you use a guide. I had several moments where I had unlocked all of the locations found in currently available rumours, did all the events I could up to that point, and had no idea what to do next because no new rumours were coming up so I couldn’t search for new locations even if I knew where they are. I had to look it up on the GameFAQs forums, only to find out that I needed to get more Slime Jellies to complete a collection and get a new alias in order for one new rumour to appear.
What the hell. Just what the fuck. I would have dropped the game normally, but the battles are really fun so I’m continuing. It’s an SRPG, and the amount of options and customization is great to experiment with. It’s the same feeling I had when I first played Disgaea: refreshing and endless. Hopefully that continues, and the shitty plot progression doesn’t ruin the game for me. I really like the battles. The plot hasn’t gone anywhere so far, but I do like the main party. The protagonist is a cold jerk and everyone else is pretty much pissed at him all the time, making for some fun to watch dynamics. Also, wasn’t the title Blazing Souls Accelerate? Why did Aksys change it to Accelate, which isn’t a real word and doesn’t make sense? This puzzles me. It’s not like the word “Accelate” attracts customers more than “Accelerate.”