I’m deeply thankful to Elements for finally testing out an adventure mode because it allows me to legitimately write about one of my favourite games without having to bend the ‘RPGs only’ rule here at My Boxed Universe. Not that I intend to allow my personal experiences with this title sway me, this will be a fair and balanced review.
It’s hard to believe that Tactical RPGs were in a bit of a slump in the west prior to the release of Disgaea. The likes of ‘Final Fantasy Tactics’ had ‘Tactics Ogre’ had set a standard for the genre that was overly-serious and could at times produce lengthy, dry campaigns that required a significant investment in time to beat, even if those games produced great gameplay and narratives. Tactical RPGs were becoming dull and grey in tone. Then Nippon Ichi released Disgaea onto the world and everything changed.
The mobile market is becoming flooded with Games Workshop adaptions to the point of excess, but the team at Rodeo Games (who also brought us the fantastic dungeon crawl ‘Warhammer Quest’ and the ‘Hunters’ series) always seem to find a way to make their titles stand out from the pack.
The first non-Kingturn RPG from Mangobile feels a lot like the previous titles but scratching the surface of the games narrative will reveal a very different world beneath the hood. Tactics Maiden sits in its own little niche that perfectly marries short sharp skirmishes and intense console-level battles that can absorb your attention for longer sessions.
Many experienced gamers will tell you that the Suikoden series peaked with Suikoden II and not to bother playing past the first two instalments. I feel genuinely sorry for those who did so, because Suikoden III is a hidden gem that the UK has only just managed to get its hands on over a whole console generation later than its original release.
Many people believe the the pinnacle of roleplaying on Nintendo’s Wii was Xenoblade Chronicles, but there’s a little title from Mistwalker Studios that makes a compelling case against it. The Last Story may perhaps be the greatest return to form from Sakaguchi since Final Fantasy IX.
Bioware have made a name for themselves in the Western RPG genre by producing some of the best and most complex titles around. ‘Knights of the Old Republic’ and ‘Baldur’s Gate’ were huge, making RPG fans out of many people who had never even touched a game before, but they were based on the worlds and systems of others. Dragon Age Origins is what happened when Bioware turned its creative talents to an original IP within a fantasy setting.
After the high standards set by Square on the Playstation the expectations were high for a Final Fantasy title on the Playstation 2. Final Fantasy X launched to a wave of hype and manages to push a number of impressive firsts onto the players for the long-running series.
Chrono Trigger is one of those games a website has to wait a while before reviewing. Build up a body of work and show that it’s capable of formulating an honest opinion before tackling it. It would be easy to gush all over this game, but instead MBU is taking a direct on honest fresh look at the title that many believe broke the JRPG mould.
It’s rare that Visual Novels cross the border into RPG territory. In their strictest sense they play the role of an interactive story book, demanding decisions on the part of the player infrequently and have garnered an unfair reputation as borderline sex-games through the release of a couple of high profile titles. Loren the Amazon Princess is a game from Winter Wolves that doesn’t just step over that border; it mounts a full scale invasion into RPG territory.