Tag: Sega

Console Gaming, Game Review, Games, Retro Game, Review, Tech Review, Technology, Videogame

Retro Gaming House Retro Pie Emulation Station Raspberry Pi Review

This is not a sponsored post. I decided to purchase a Raspberry Pi with Retro Pi, Emulation Station, Kodi, and some other goodies pre-installed. I purchased mine from Retro Gaming House. https://www.retrogaminghouse.com/collections/retropie-emulators

The one I ordered came with 2 controllers that look a lot like PS4 controllers and a wireless keyboard. It had a small 32gb micro sd card with all the software pre-installed. They say they use their own skins and stuff too but I’m not sure if that claim is true or false. read more

Adventure Game, Featured, furries, Game Review, Gaming, Nintendo, Nintendo Switch, PC, PC Gaming, Platform Game, Playstation 4, Retro Game, Review, Videogame, Xbox One

Sonic Mania PC Game Review

Title: Sonic Mania

Genre: Platform Game

Publisher: Sega

Platform: PC, Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One

Where to Get: I got Sonic Mania and a buncha other Sonic games in a humble bundle, but if that bundle is over you can find the games on amazon or steam.

Release Date: 2017

Overview: Sonic Mania is one of the newest Sonic Games, however, it pays homage to 90s oldschool Sonic and is very well received by 30+ year old Sonic fans, as well as a whole new generation of gamers.

Gameplay: 10/10 – Sonic is back in a new game, with levels re-designed from the original Sonic games as well as all new levels created for Sonic Mania. You can play as Sonic, Tails, or several “new” characters first appearing in Knuckles Chaotix or Arcade exclusive sonic games. To play the game as other characters you will have to select the characters at the starting screen – you cannot switch characters within the game.

The levels are fun and fast and action packed. You run, jump, spin, and dash through the levels. There are many different paths in each level and many hidden objects, including entrances to bonus stages to capture chaos diamonds. Overall the gameplay is fun and full of nostalgia

Story: 1/10 Sonic isn’t a story-centric game, and it doesn’t really need a story. Timeline wise, it is said to take place after the events in Sonic and Knuckles. Lack of story does not hurt this game, but if you’re looking for a game with a great story, this is not it.

Characters: 5/10 – I enjoyed seeing Sonic and his friends return in an all new game, and it definitely brought back nostalgia and my childhood, but without a story, there’s no real personality or character development here. Once again though, games like this do not really need character development to be central to the player’s enjoyment of the game.

Graphics: 7/10 – The graphics are done in a bright colorful oldschool pixel style. This is not for everyone. Clearly this game is wanting to appeal to old school gamers who grew up with the original Sonic. Me? I liked it. But your opinion may be different. I did see some anti-aliasing and rough edges as to be expected in pixel style games, mostly especially when playing in fullscreen mode. There are different filters and options you can enable in settings to try to minimize this jagged-edginess.

Music: 10/10 – The music is definitely old school too and a great homage to the Sega Genesis Sonic games, which always had some pretty fun music.

Replay Value: 10/10 – The replay value is high because there are different characters that you can play as, each with their own unique abilities that make taking different paths through the same levels very unique experiences. No two characters play exactly alike. There are also different gameplay modes such as time attack and multiplayer competitions.

Nostalgia: 10/10 – This game set out to be a tribute game to the 90’s Sonic games, and it succeeds at this in an unprecedented way, welcoming back into the fold Sega fans who felt disappointed with the past several Sonic games.

Geeky: 5/5 – Nostalgia and pixel graphics and great soundtrack that 90s kids will love, make Sonic Mania chock full of nostalgia.

Sweetie: 2/5 – Lack of story and lack of character dialogue make this a game that is definitely outside the norm of what I normally enjoy or normally review here. However I think the nostalgia and cute/colorful graphics and anthropomorphic animal characters will appeal to most of my readers, who are already probably familiar with the Sonic franchise.

Overall Score: 60/80 75 C “Good Game for Girls”

Adventure Game, Game Review, Point and Click, Review, Sega Genesis, Videogame

Cosmic Spacehead Retro Sega Genesis Videogame Review

Title: Cosmic Spacehead

Genre: Point and Click / Puzzle Solving

Release Date: 1993

Platform: (For this Review) Sega Genesis (there were also other versions including NES and Gamegear).

Developer: Codemasters

Where to Buy:    

 

Geeky:  4/5 – High marks here for the graphics and production values, losing a point for the sometimes challenging/frustrating puzzles as well as challenging platform minigames which create more frustration than enjoyment at times.

Sweetie:  4/5 – High marks here for charm and whimsy – losing a point for weak story and lack of replay value

Concept: 8/10 This is a very cute and cheeky point and click puzzle solving adventure game with a lot of humor and mischief. It also had amazing graphics for its time and technical limitations back in the early 90s. What I like about Cosmic Spacehead is how colorful and detailed the game world is and how it mixes sometimes crude and adult humor into a rather childlike game setting. However, the story is pretty “out there” and if you’re wanting anything serious or emotional or thought provoking this game is not for you :). But if you’re looking for something “different” or just simply “fun” you should check this game out.

Gameplay: 7/10 The 90s was the hay-days for point and click adventure games, however, Cosmic Spacehead takes a slightly different approach to the genre by also combining different game mechanics in the form of dozens of fun minigames, from platforming, side scrolling, even racing. These cute and fun minigames helped breakup some of the tedium which often plagued other point-n-click games of the 90s. Aside from the minigames, the controls in Cosmic Spacehead are your typical run of the mill point-n-click fare. You explore different locations, examine objects, pick up and use objects, talk to various characters, and solve puzzles to continue on your journey.

One of the pitfalls in the gameplay is that many of the puzzles make no logical sense and leave you backtracking or just spending hours via trial and error which takes some of the fun out of the game. There’s also not a large number of puzzles, so assuming you do not get stuck, you can easily complete this game within a few hours.

At the end of each level, you’ll encounter a mario-style platform minigame which is often criticized for being extremely challenging as if you get hit or miss a jump it’s instant death.

Still, it’s the experience of playing a virtual cartoon and enjoying the humor along the way which makes the game so much fun and unique. In an era of a lot of “sameness” this little game was brave enough to be different. It didn’t always pan out, but taking risks, is worth a few brownie points in my opinion. Cosmic Spacehead is a game that wants to make you smile. And it does that very well. It may have been a parody or attempt to mock the success of point and click adventure games at large. Nothing about this game takes itself very seriously.

Story: 5/10 You are Cosmic Spacehead, and you’ve just returned from discovering an ancient forgotten planet called Earth. However, when you get back home, no one seems to believe your story. To make matters worse, you’re dirt poor and have no way to get back to Earth to prove everyone wrong.  To remedy this, you begin to carry out errands and odd jobs which leads to earning in-game currency and puts you closer to your goal to prove Earth exists. The story like everything else in the game is very light hearted and has a tongue and cheek style of humor which may appeal more to adults than young kids despite the simplistic gameplay. Although the story is zany and bright, there’s just not much substance to it to merit giving it a higher score. It’s a fun and enjoyable experience, but not amazing by any means. The story definitely takes a back seat to the gameplay here.

Characters: 7/10 – Although there are few characters in number, they are very unique and memorable. The humor and colorful graphics helps to endear anyone friend or foe that you meet along your travels.

Graphics: 10/10 – One of the best looking games on the Genesis. The world is bright and colorful and animated to help bring the characters to life. It’s a playful and vibrant world and is one of the most charming games you’ll see on this system.

Music: 7/10 – The music in cosmic spacehead is bright and bold and strangely addicting. It helps set the futuristic theme and like the story itself, it keeps an upbeat and sometimes unexpected tempo that seems to fit the game world quite well.

Replay Value: 3/10  – The game is short and linear. However, there’s really no other game like it, and it’s worth replaying just to revisit the colorful worlds and characters. Once you know the puzzles though, replaying games such as this becomes not nearly as fun, therefore, I recommend waiting a few years between replays, so you might forget some of the solutions along the way and get to have fun solving them again – well fun, or hours of frustration – either way, Cosmic Spacehead is a really quirky and cute game that you’ll want to revisit at least once again for nostalgia’s sake.

Overall: 55/80 69%  D+ “Average Game for Girls” – While this is my objective review, I’d still recommend this game anyways – it’s short and sweet, and cute and whimsical enough that it really should be considered a must play as it’s oddly addictive and endearing in so many ways.

3DS, Action RPG, Animals, Anime, Dating Sim, Dressup Games, Fantasy, Game News, Handheld or Portable Gaming, Kawaii Cute, Kawaii News, Life Sim, News, Nintendo, Nintendo DS, Preview, Release Date, Restaurant Simulation, Scifi, Slice of Life, Themed Cafes, Videogame

Kawaii Cat Cafe JRPG, 7th Dragon, Heads West with Over 96 Ways to Customize the Appearance of Your Hero

7th Dragon until now, has remained a title only available in Japan, but that is about to change with 7th Dragon III Code VFD on the Nintendo 3DS.

This quirky little Time Travel RPG sees us in a not too distant future which is at war with powerful dragons. In order to save the world from destruction, you must travel to the ancient city of Atlantis, future capital of Eden, and present day Tokyo.

The artwork features chibi super-deformed, bobble head, big head, tiny body style character designs, giving everything a very cute anime feeling. Check out the trailer below to see what I mean. Very Kawaii!:

With the cute art work, and almost endless ways to customize your hero, this game immediately sparks my radar. I admit, I’ve not heard of 7th Dragon until now. I’m somewhat surprised to see Sega’s name attached to this project, but then again, not really no, because they do own Atlus who is well known for “risky” games like this which “cater to Otaku” – I wonder why they wouldn’t brand this title under their Atlus flagship since it has a lot of loyal fans already which they could then leverage to get more attention for this cute little game.

From the very brief teaser, it looks like it will be an emotionally engaging story as well – We see a character sick in a hospital bed for example.

Most intriguingly of all Destructoid reports that “And as if that weren’t bizarre enough, the role-playing game involves rescuing stray cats from dungeons and sheltering them in a cat café.” And if you don’t know what a Cat Cafe is, you can check out my post for 10 Cat Cafe you can visit in North America.

The whole “Cat Cafe” concept makes the game even more Kawaii and immediately appealing to me (and likely also to my readers). I’m becoming more and more intrigued by this little game and can’t wait to check it out.

The game will release on July 2016 and is available for preorder on Amazon here: Preorder 7th Dragon III Code VFD

 

Those who click the amazon link above can read even more of the game’s features – Incredibly enough, it even features a dating sim element. Given that the series originally was created and handled by Imageepoch who made Fate/Extra which plays INSANELY SIMILAR to Persona 3 and 4… I can imagine that THIS dungeon crawling RPG will also be very similar to Fate/Extra and Persona 3 and 4.

The Japanese voice cast has been left in tact, and not only do you customize your heroes’ appearances, but also their voices, with more than 40 voices to choose from!

This game is Kawaii to the Max! Very Otaku Pandering, and very very very cute and quirky. Personally, I can’t wait! BRING ON THE CAT CAFE DUNGEON CRAWLING DRESSUP JRPG! This game is right up my alley!

Featured, Free Game, Game Review, Holidays, Platform Game, Playstation 2, Playstation 3, Playstation 4, Playstation Vita, Retro Game, Review, Sega Saturn, Videogame, Xbox 360, Xbox One

Christmas Nights – Sega Saturn Retro Game Review – Special Limited Edition Disc

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas – at least in the Retro Sega Saturn Special Disc called Christmas Nights. I received this game as a kid when I purchased a gaming magazine (I can’t remember which magazine now though as this was back in the 90s).

But if you didn’t grow up in the 90s, you can still play Christmas Nights after beating the HD Remastered Nights into Dreams at least one time.

Christmas Nights is a special game that expands on the great gameplay of Nights into Dreams. Players can play as either Claris or Elliot and explore a Christmas themed rendition of the first level of Claris’ Spring Valley dream, including the battle with Gillwing at the end of the level.

Although the game is short, it has high replay value because you earn presents which will unlock additional Nights related content such as special artwork, story content, or even the ability to play additional levels, including a sonic the hedgehog/robotnik themed level.

Perhaps the best feature, is the use of the internal clock which changes the game levels depending on how close it is to Christmas. For most of the months, the game is simply “Nights Limited Edition” however, in the month prior to and the month following Christmas (November and January) the game’s title changes to “Winter Nights” and the typical bright green graphics and scenery are replaced with mountains of snow. In December, the title changers again to “Christmas Nights” and Christmas trees, Christmas presents, wreaths, bows, lights, and garland decorate the screen. The music also changes to reflect the seasons.

For those who have never played a Nights game, the gameplay consists of flying around 3d level designs, where you can go anywhere, any direction, explore, do tricks in the air, and collect orbs which you need to advance through different check points. You’re also racing against the clock (literally) if you fail to complete the level in a certain amount of time, you will fall to the ground and most complete the level on foot while running from and avoiding a giant alarm clock. (If it touches you, it’s game over).

The more tricks you do, and the faster you complete each level, the higher your score. You need to pass with I believe a C or higher to move on to the next level.

At the time of it’s original release, back in the 90s, it was a revolutionary game due to the style of gameplay floating, flying, and racing around the map.

The game itself is short on story and in fact, plops you down into the first level without a clue what’s going on. As you complete each level you will see brief bits of a very simplistic story which is a bit childlike.

You can pick Claris or Elliot, each with their own levels to play, and each with their own story. Both children are afraid of failure and it’s holding them back from accomplishing their dream. For Claris that dream is singing, and for Elliot, that dream is playing basketball. When they become Night, it gives them courage and helps them realize they can accomplish their dreams.

The story in Christmas Nights is one where Claris and Elliot are trying to find the missing star on top of the christmas tree in the town square. I also got the vibe that Clairs and Elliot are a couple now, as it depicts them holding hands in some of the scenes.

Christmas Nights is too short to have any real story, but the story that is there is presented with nice still frame animations that are quite attractive and give a warm and fuzzy feeling. It’s a very cute but simple story.

While it’s mainly a demo/teaser of Nights, or meant to be enjoyed by Nights fans due to the bonus content which you unlock while playing, I think Christmas Nights could stand alone as it’s own game as well.

Overall: 55/80 69% D+ Average Game For Girls.

Geeky: 

Sweetie: 

Concept: 10/10 for good use of internal clock, fun way to expand Nights world, and fun bonus content. Keeping in mind, this was a free game, it was intended as a “christmas gift” from sega to fans of the original Nights into Dreams.

Gameplay: 10/10 Nights and Christmas Nights both feature really fast, fun, and addictive gameplay with the ability to do tricks while flying and the free range 3d environments with lots of objects to interact with along the way.

Story: 3/10 There is a story, but it’s not great. Christmas Nights at least presents some story before dropping you into the game; but the original Nights into dreams just thrusts you into the first level right away. Clearly this is a game that focuses on Gameplay, and it doesn’t really need a story to be fun; but for gamers who like story centric games, this isn’t one of them.

Characters: 3/10 There is some character development, watching the children overcome their fears; but they’re just too childlike and too simplistic for me to identify with, and that’s true of even when I was a kid myself back in the 90s.

Graphics: 5/10 The game looks ugly now, even the High Def remastered version on Playstation Network and Xbox Live. It has not aged well. Of course, when it first came out, the graphics were amazing, but now, 20 years later, not so much. The textures especially look bad. And the bright garish color scheme (made even more gaudy in Christmas Nights) just looks tacky and trashy.

Music: 10/10 Nights does have a good sound track, and Christmas Nights use of the internal clock to christmas-ify the soundtrack is very clever.

Replay Value: 10/10 Christmas Nights has even higher replay than the original Nights into Dreams, because Christmas Nights has so many unlockable bonus items.

Overall: 55/80 69% D+ Average Game For Girls.

Note: If We don’t take into account the story and characters then this game becomes a 49/60 or 82% B- Very Good Game for Girls which more accurately reflects my enjoyment of the game.

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20 Years of Playstation read more

Featured, Game Review, Multiple Endings, Retro Game, Review, RPG, RTS, Sega Saturn, SRPG, Strategy, Videogame

Dragon Force | Retro | SRPG | Review | Sega Saturn | Working Designs | Strategy | Strategy RPG | Strategy Game | Retro Game | Retro Gamers | Retro Game Review

Title: Dragon Force

Platform: Sega Saturn (or if you’re able to read Japanese, the original game has also been ported to PS2 and PS3. No word if it’ll ever get ported over to the USA; chances are slim now that Working Designs, the original publisher in the USA, is defunct.)

Release Date: November 1996

Publisher: Working Designs

Where to Buy: This game goes for $100-$200 on sites like Amazon. (and yes, it’s worth it; it’s an amazing game) You can find it on this page here: http://www.amazon.com/Dragon-Force-Sega-Saturn/dp/B00004SW0Z

Geeky Factor

Sweetie Factor

Overall: 76/90 84% B “Very Good Game For Girls”

Concept: 10/10 Dragon Force is a Real-Time Strategy RPG with large-scale warfare (hundreds of units in combat) which allows you to play as one of 6 different kingdoms initially, with 2 more to unlock through multiple gameplays. Each kingdom has it’s own unique story within the game, making for excellent replay value. There are a ton of hidden characters to recruit too, which also may add to replay value if you fail to recruit them on your first attempt.

Gameplay: 10/10 There are a few different elements to the gameplay. The primary focus is on managing your kingdom by hiring new generals (you can spend a turn searching for generals as well), you have to keep your generals happy or risk losing them also. To do this, you can award merits obtained in battle to certain generals that you want to boost. You can also raid castles to find treasure.

As the game progresses, you capture more castles (the goal is to control all the castles on the map); but you can also lose castles too if you do not assign enough generals and soldiers to defend the area. Hence why recruiting generals becomes one of the primary focuses of gameplay.

Dragon Force has incredibly unique combat in that each of your generals can lead hundreds of soldiers into battle and there are many different types of soldiers for you to add to your party which fill different class roles such as knights, archers, mages, vampires, beastmen, etc. Having the right balance of soldiers and generals is very important to the gameplay, some fights will become very difficult if you don’t put time and thought into your army.

Story: 7/10 Since the game has several different stories woven into one game, and forces you to play as all of the characters to unlock additional story-driven characters, it can take a lot of effort to see the whole story. There are some elements within each playthrough that will follow the same lore/backstory that ties all of the stories together. The lore goes like this…

The world of Legendra was a peaceful world, governed by the Godess Astea, until the arrival of an evil force known as Madruk. A warrior known as Harsgalt sealed away Madruk’s evil powers but was unable to defeat him completely. Madruk remained sealed away for 300 years, however, now his Minions seek to revive their dark lord. Madruk’s minions have tricked the 8 nations into warring with one another so that they’d be too busy to stop them from their plans. The rulers of each nation must be convinced to set aside their differences and join forces to stop this greater evil.

Although there is a story here and there are anime cutscenes and voice acting, it feels like the story still takes a backseat to the action/combat and kingdom management features of the game. Also, as with any game with branching plots, some characters’ routes feel more fleshed out than others.

Characters: 8/10 I don’t want to get into spoiling all of the different story lines as the fun in the game comes from experiencing each monarch’s perspective for yourself. I will just give a brief overview of the characters here, but there is much more to learn by playing the game for yourself.

Junon: Cold Hearted, brutal knight, known as the “Masked Death”, rules the cold icy kingdoms of the north.

Mikhail: A samurai seeking to avenge his father’s death. He has most of the qualities we imagine a samurai to have, a calm, honorable disposition and air of mystique.

Leon: Large muscle-bound “hulk” like character, with a hot temper and stubborn streak.

Gongos: Leader of the beastmen. He is a kind and courageous king who is well loved by his people, because he lives in the forest however, he is not always the brightest when it comes to wits or common sense when dealing with humans

Teiris: Typical “female protagonist” here. The game makes up for this overused stereotype elsewhere though as you will see for yourself if you play the game. She is depicted as the good-natured, “friend to the world”, kind-hearted, soft spoken, and physically weak, but makes up for it with her excellent magic skills and abilities.

Wein: Wein is kinda the default “hero” or knight type of character, he is strong, noble, and proud. He accepts his duty gladly, and does everything in his power to serve the orders of the Goddess Astea.

Voice Acting: 8/10 Like many of Working Design’s RPGs, the voice actor talent is top notch. There are not as many voiced scenes and anime cutscenes as say, Lunar or Vay (two other Working Designs anime RPGs) but there’s still a decent amount. And like all Working Design games if you sit at the credits screen after completing the game, you get to hear the gag reel and outtakes. The voice actors clearly had fun in their roles, and it shows through in their performances as well.

Music: 5/10 Music is just kinda “there”; not particularly bad, nor good.

Graphics: 8/10 It is exciting to see all of your units in combat. They did an amazing job designing the combat system which is very unique to this game. There are also ample anime cutscenes, and while the anime scenes have that “90s retro vibe” they’re still nice and colorful. The overworld map and other elements are rather basic in design, and the kingdom management screen while easy to use, is also not the most elegant of systems.

Replay Value: 10/10 – to see the whole story, and to unlock other playable nations you must play the game multiple times. This encourages the user to explore the game as other kingdoms and experience new stories and different play styles.

Overall: 76/90 84% B “Very Good Game For Girls”

 

Anime, Branching Plot, Dating Sim, Multiple Endings, Retro Game, Review, RPG, Sega Genesis, Videogame

Phantasy Star III Generations of Doom Review

Title: Phantasy Star 3 Generations of Doom

Genre: RPG with Dating Sim elements

Publisher: Sega

Release Date: July 1991

Platforms: Originally for the Sega Genesis, it has since been ported to virtually every console, including the PC

Where to Buy: I recommend the Sega Genesis Collection which includes Phantasy Star II, III, and IV (and a buncha other awesome retro games). You can get it on amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/Sega-Genesis-Classic-Game-Online/dp/B00AEV8HI2

Geeky Factor

Sweetie Factor: 

Overall: 59/80 74% C “Good Game For Girls”

Concept: 10/10 It was one of the first, if not the first, game to have generational gameplay. By that I mean, during the game you select other party members to marry and the story continues throughout your blood line with some slight variation depending on your choices.

Story: 10/10 This is a very deep and intricate story; afterall they need 3 generations to tell it. Unlike other Phantasy Star titles, this game features a more “traditional” fantasy based setting (as opposed to more scifi themes found in the other Phantasy Star games) Although the game does still contain some scifi elements (spaceships, cyborgs, etc), These features appear much later on in the story and are often shown as “lost technology” that is no longer available. The world has regressed technologically since the story in Phantasy Star II and this gives the setting more of a fantasy feeling overall.

The story begins on the day of your wedding, you are getting married to a young woman who mysteriously washed up on the shore with no memories of her past. On the day of your wedding, your bride to be is kidnapped before the ceremony and you begin your journey to rescue your love. Things are not at all what they appear though, and as the game continues to unfold, you discover the source of racial conflict in your lands and come to an understanding between the two nations. Depending on who you choose to marry at the end of each chapter, you will experience different points of view from different warring factions, which helps you come to understand and even sympathize with your enemy. The story is rich in lore, history, it’s own religions, and strong back story.

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Characters: 7/10 The characters are unique, consisting of 3 warring races, including Android, Orakian, and Layan. The race and ancestry of your main character is determined by choices you make in the game by marrying various characters. As mentioned above, this also impacts which parts of the story you see. It also determines their stats, abilities, and strengths and weaknesses, as well as preferred fighting style. Some characters are very deep and memorable such as Wren; while other characters don’t feel as well fleshed out as they could have been. – Perhaps due to the fact that characters come and go so frequently in the game, with the exception of Wren and Mieu. This leaves me often not as emotionally invested in any of the generations or characters as I would have hoped to be. Overall, the characters are full of interesting and complicated back stories and have as rich a history as the game world itself, but yet they fail to “connect” with the player in a memorable way and this may be a fault of the translation, or of the original script itself, but they are just rather bland feeling. When you’re supposed to save these people, fall in love with them, marry them, and have their children, and care enough about what happens to their kingdoms and the future generations, I think it falls a bit short in character development in this regard.

Gameplay: 10/10 As I mention above, the gameplay in Generations of Doom is really fun; for that reason, it’s my favorite game in the series. I love the generations system, and while it has been done a few times since then (Agarest War comes to mind for example), at the time of it’s release, I believe this was a revolutionary concept that no other game had attempted before. The generation system aside for a moment, the rest of the game is standard 16 bit rpg gameplay, exploring dungeons, interacting with npcs, undertaking quests, finding treasure, solving puzzles and riddles, and engaging in turn based combat.

Graphics: 4/10 Even back in it’s own time, the graphics in Phantasy Star 3, do not impress. The character portraits are lovely, and very detailed; but the graphics in combat, as well as when exploring the maps, just don’t have enough “depth” and come up looking very flat, even when compared to other 90s games. I’m surprised that it did not get a version on sega cd, with anime cut scenes since there are many story scenes featuring still anime images within the game (which are of low quality in their current state). It would have been nice to see it receive a treatment similar to Lunar or Vay, as it has the same anime “feel” to it. Also for some reason, some battle animations and backgrounds were removed from the US release. The Japanese version used parallax sliders to help create depth, which may have fixed some of the issues described above with the “flat” feeling graphics. Why they changed this is a mystery to me. Some screenshots for you below.

Music: 7/10 -The soundtrack has a large variety of music which helps immerse the user in moments of suspense, mystery, and adventure. There are multiple different battle themes, and also the overworld map music changes frequently as characters join or leave your party. The music itself has a symphony-inspired feeling, although it is dated by today’s standards and the technology of its time limited some of what could be done in the soundtrack. The music is composed by Izuho Numata who is well loved for his work in Ys and Sonic the Hedgehog. Although the soundtrack offers many different tracks and does help draw the player into the world of Phantasy Star III, compared to his other works, this soundtrack seems less memorable, although still quite lovely.

Replay Value: 5/10 Although the game does have multiple endings, and different branches within the story, it is often criticized for not having “meaningful” changes; many players argue that the endings’ differences are too slight to warrant multiple playthroughs, but what I enjoyed was seeing the story told from the point of view of the different races. These racial tensions are really the whole heart of the story; and it’s important to see the different experiences each race has, to understand how they’ve arrived at hating one another over the years. For that reason, I would argue that it’s worth replaying. But I agree, ultimately it’s the same story being told, just with a different point of view each time.

Overall: 59/80 74% C “Good Game For Girls”

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