Star Ocean: First Departure PSP

Metascore
74

Mixed or average reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 32
  2. Negative: 1 out of 32
Buy On
  1. 74
    If you can look at First Departure and understand that it's based on a very old title, you'll likely be able to overlook the problems and get a fair amount of satisfaction from the simple but mildly rewarding gameplay and old-school themes. Otherwise, a bland, awkwardly told narrative and weak characters prevent Star Ocean from being anything more than an amusing tribute to an old hit.
  2. The game pales in comparison with most other games if you treat it as a new game, but as a standalone first entry, it’s honestly aged a whole lot better than the first entries to games like Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Suikoden, and other RPG’s.
  3. Pelit (Finland)
    71
    A decent remake, but the fights are too easy and there is too much of them. [Feb 2009]
  4. Playstation: The Official Magazine (US)
    70
    Even so, First Departure has transitioned so smoothly to the PSP that it's definitely worth playing if you're curious about Star Ocean's origins or if you're itching for a charming and portable classic RPG. [Nov 2008, p.80]
  5. The gameplay and plot show their age, blending into the sea of modern role-playing conventions.
  6. As long as you don’t mind the shallow real-time battles, Star Ocean: First Departure holds up amazingly well.
  7. Star Ocean is a good game. But nothing more than that. Because of the outdated graphics it will probably never enter the top of the JRPG genre. Nevertheless, real JRPG fans will be drawn by the strong storyline and the unique gameplay elements and will get enough in return for their interest in the game.
  8. Star Ocean: First Departure is a solid game that has made me want to check out the other installments in the series, but the battle system kept me from really falling in love with it.
  9. Playstation Official Magazine Australia
    70
    Great synthesis of styles. [Feb 2009, p.78]
  10. Star Ocean: First Departure may be full of flaws, but being an RPG from 1996, that shouldn’t be entirely unexpected.
  11. Turn-based battles are simplistic, repetitive and random, while the one-dimensional story failed to hold our interests. Nevertheless, the game's upgraded 2-D sprites, luscious pre-rendered backdrops and 3-D over world boost the presentation, and the music is, thankfully, timeless.
  12. Playstation Official Magazine UK
    60
    Like an internet date reaching for your hand over a candlelit dinner this feels much older than it looks. [Christmas 2008, p.119]
  13. Star Ocean: First Departure's updated presentation fails to disguise its shallow gameplay or limited appeal.
  14. With a weak story, repetitive gameplay and a little too much backtracking, it's easy to become indifferent to Square Enix's newest portable role-playing game.

Awards & Rankings

#5 Most Discussed PSP Game of 2008
#10 Most Shared PSP Game of 2008
User Score
7.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 27 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. JaretW.
    Jan 14, 2009
    10
    Very good game, a lot was put into this game that wasn't in the original, and makes the game feel polished. Surprisingly good voice Very good game, a lot was put into this game that wasn't in the original, and makes the game feel polished. Surprisingly good voice acting, and anime style cut scenes really help the story telling along. In my opinion the best RPG on the PSP right now. Full Review »
  2. LeonN.
    Jan 7, 2009
    10
    I've been a big fan of Star Ocean since I played SO2 on PSX, and I've been waiting for this remake for years...and it didn't I've been a big fan of Star Ocean since I played SO2 on PSX, and I've been waiting for this remake for years...and it didn't dissapoint me at all! This game is for me the best RPG on PSP released to date...I finished it in 3 days, cuz I couldn't stop playing it everywhere. The story is great and fun, the characters are charismatic and completely different from each other, the battles are quick, easy and entertaining, you can change some parts of the story according to your actions and choices, and the classic graphics are not bad at all! Definetely the best! Full Review »
  3. PeterK
    Nov 4, 2008
    10
    I wasn't expecting much out of this game when I put my reserve on it at GameStop. A two weeks after picking it up, I'm starting to I wasn't expecting much out of this game when I put my reserve on it at GameStop. A two weeks after picking it up, I'm starting to play it and I am surprised at how much I like it. The gameplay is that of an old classic PS1 RPG, but it adds some nice features like voices for the characters, so you don't have to read everything. The story is very interesting although it is very linear. I can't wait until the next Star Ocean title for the PSP coming out in January, and the Star Ocean that's coming out for Xbox 360 in March! Full Review »