An enjoyable shift in Social RPGs in recent months has been a growing trend in putting the focus on storytelling. Earlier this year we were pleasantly surprised with the amount of inter-character sequences in Dissidia’s mobile outing from Square Enix, Nintendo has managed to finally give ‘Fire Emblem: Heroes’ a compelling arc with its second chapter, and now we have Sdorica Sunset to add to the list of genuinely interesting narratives.
Phantasy Star III is often viewed as the black sheep of the series, and it’s a fair standpoint. In terms of world setting, gameplay and characterisation there’s a definite disconnect from the other titles in the series and many of the further-reaching or impactful elements are tied in retrospectively by the games successor instead of directly in the game at hand. Still, does that necessarily make it a bad game? Continue reading →
It’s taken a surprising amount of time to get a game that exemplifies what most people would have expected from a Harry Potter title. The pitch practically writes itself in fact; take the setting of Hogwarts school for Witchcraft and Wizardry and allow players to create their own avatar and enjoy a mixture of school sim and original adventure. Set it within a period where enough recognisable faces from the popular novel series are around but not while Harry, Ron or Hermione are in attendance to avoid breaking canon.
Known in some regions as ‘Dark Cloud 2’, Dark Chronicle is a follow-up to the PlayStation 2 launch title that put Level-5 on the map. A sequel in the loosest terms (the game carries over none of the characters, story or world trappings, but does incorporate and build upon systems first seen in Dark Cloud), it’s an Action RPG that many consider to be the hidden peak of the genre on Sony’s black box, eclipsing even the far more prominent ‘Kingdom Hearts’. Continue reading →
Level-5 may be a big name in the gaming industry these days, but once upon a time they were just another nobody set to release a launch title for the PlayStation 2. Whilst Dark Cloud is certainly showing its rough edges in this day and age (and has undoubtedly been bettered) it’s still interesting to see the scope this studio invested in their first outing.
Kemco has developed a reputation for pushing out JRPGs onto mobiles as a schedule to intense that the quality of their games can suffer for it, with many feeling like drab re-treads that use the same system and assets with minimal new elements or gameplay hooks. It’s interesting to see how many of these faults can be forgiven when the game is wrapped in a ‘retro’ presentation.