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.
Galaxy of Pen and Paper sees a return to the series by its original development team, Paradox North after briefly handing over the reins of the franchise to Paradox Interactive (who recently made the original free to play) while they made their Power Rangers tribute Tactical RPG ‘Chroma Squad’. You’ll learn that the developers liked Chroma Squad quite a lot throughout Galaxy of Pen and Paper, largely because the characters in the game keep talking about it.
Lands of Livia is a title from solo developer Aaron Vernon that attempts to take all of the travel, questing and loot gathering of a large-scale WRPG and create a casual experience that is both relaxing and engaging. Starting out as a free to play model, the game more recently saw a sizable first ‘chapter’ drop that significantly increased content for a small one-off payment.
For many the most fun to be had in any ‘Legend of Zelda’ game is when the hook shot item comes into play. Legend of the Skyfish takes this idea and runs with it, and its developer, Mgaia makes the most of the concept.
Kongregate has given us some really interesting titles over the last couple of years, both through their official website and on mobile. Bit Heroes is their first major stab at bringing a social MMORPG to life after a slew of other genre types, and Juppiomenz has done an excellent job producing a workable model for mobile.
SquareEnix is fast approaching the point where they will have release more re-release retro content than new games this side of the millennium, but when a company has such a vast and genre-defining back catalog it’s hard to argue against seeing some of their titles getting a lavish remake. Adventures of Mana is in fact the second remake of the originally titled ‘Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden’ (also known as ‘Mystic Quest’ and ‘Final Fantasy Adventure’ outside Japan) after the less than successful ‘Sword of Mana’ version on the Game Boy Advance, and this version easily trumps it’s last-gen equivalent on all fronts by staying closer to the source material.
If there was ever a poster-child for the table top wargaming experience on mobile devices it would be the original Demon’s Rise, a game that saw a slew of post-release content that quickly fleshed it out into one of the more satisfying and varied tactical experiences of its generation. Now, Wave Light Games Inc. are seeking to better it with a sequel.