The main thing that stands out about this game is the real-time battle system. While this does set the game apart from the other cookie-cutter games coming out around the same time, it has some problems. It tends to be very hard to tell what’s happening in the battle, especially since you have 3 AI-controlled units and then enemies on all sides. It’s difficult to know who is hitting you, who is causing the poison, etc. Healing can also be tricky. The controls for using magic and items are unintuitive and I felt like I never really got used to it.
Maybe this is why so many games fall back on the cookie cutter AMID system — it’s not great, but at least the designers and players know what to expect and it’s not very risky.
The story sequences have good artwork to go along with them. I wish a lot more games did this rather than just sticking with the sprites. It gives you a lot more feel for what the characters look like. The rest of the graphics are fairly decent as well.
The game requires too much grinding for my taste. Most of it can be done while exploring the areas, but especially at the end, I had to grind quite a bit to finish the game.
Overall the game is somewhat worth playing. Here’s my ranking system again:
A – These games were truly enjoyable, I had fun playing them just as games, not for the blog.
B – These games were average. I found them boring at times, and it was mostly the fulfillment of completing the game for the blog that carried me through. My overall experience with the game wasn’t terrible, it’s just not a game I would have finished all the way through for fun.
C – These games were painful to finish, to the point where I wanted to give up despite the blog, and had to force myself to play through (sometimes using cheats) just to move on to the next game.
I would give this game a B or maybe a B+.
Next up is the PC Engine version of Ys IV, a game I’ve wanted to play for a long time. I’m currently playing a real-time strategy RPG for the Super Famicom on my other blog, Hiouden: Pact With the Monsters.