Download: Google Play
As usual with my reviews, all scores default to 4 (“Good, but nothing to write home about”) and control defaults to 5 (“gets the job done, does not gets in the way”).
The game revolves around the concept of Passives. It has items which act as passives, but has consumables too. This was neutral to gameplay.
The story is nothing too innovative, but you’re probably already expecting this anyway, so it gets the job done. While it doesn’t have anything out of ordinary or worth write home about… it is solid and makes you keep to want playing, avoiding to overdo on the humor or breaking immersion, not to mention they actually put the effort to update the world map and what NPCs are saying as the story progresses, so I felt it would be a disservice to not give it five stars. (In fact, when story says “we’ll evacuate town X”, first the NPCs react saying it’ll happen, and then the NPCs vanish as the town is evacuated. It would be a disservice to overlook this).
Characters were also characterized and relatable. Memorable, even. It has been a while since I last played an Exe-Create game with an actually decent characterization. Story-wise, this might be the strongest point of this game. But even if characterization is good, the story itself still adheres to the cliché and sticks to it.
In this, I’ll agree with the Overlord: Why is Exe-Create still adhering to the cliché so tightly?
Anyway, you always heal HP after fights, but not MP. Some armor however provide MP regen.
Battle System is nothing to write home about ─ I’ve seen it so many times, it gets the job done and in overall good, but I always use auto. Tactics screen is OK, but nothing to write home about either, although you’ll be using it a bit. I only used Formation to get passives as well…
Skills are… Skills. Some you have little idea of the actual impact (e.g. the one for walking). Others are easier to understand. It is a bit annoying when your low-MP skill gets entirely replaced by a high-MP skill. The passives are a good addition, the collection for them is also nice, and when you learn a new skill they make fancy graphics (which… is not really exceptional). At a first glance, there doesn’t seems to have any wasted potential, it is solid. Fun, even. While you’ll rarely have low-MP skills and I advise to stack some seeds to raise max MP, due to how passives work, this will not affect gameplay negatively (surprisingly). They probably could have done better by counting total MP usage instead of times used, but eh. Also, NEVER buy stuff which raise PP rate. This will make the game HARDER, not easier.
Controls are not really OK, they have multiple walk speed settings, but I still hate that drawer system first added with Seek Hearts as it makes harder to do anything, and you’ll waste some time trying to pass through some floors just to open the drawer and switch the boots every time as they decide to put MP absorb tiles and arrow tiles in sequence (so -1 star for this, the drawer does get in the way). The buttons are sometimes too small, making the interface harder to use in overall. Not to mention some stuff is really hard to see like the danger areas, so -1 star again.
This is one of the greediest Kemco games I’ve played ─ Or, to be more precise, the money they ask for each IAP point is a rip-off. You should not consider purchasing points, they are overpriced, even if the items themselves objectively are not. You do get IAP points for battles, anyway. Well, even the premium version gives you a considerably low amount of IAP when compared to their other games. The roulette also doesn’t work when it is unlocked, you need to CLOSE the app and re-open for it to work, and going to title screen is not enough.
Now, having too expensive IAP currency is in overall fine, having to close the app so some stuff start working is not so good, but it would not be enough to subtract a star… by itself. Just like having low contrast and small text fonts by itself should not affect gameplay hard enough to be worth subtracting a star. But half star and half star is a whole star, so yes, I’ve subtracted a star. Some issues are worse than others, while other issues can be ignored, but if several tiny little issues stack up, gameplay will slowly erode itself.
The guild system itself is structured in a similar to Onigo Hunter ─ you have a guild rank, and most of the story happens while trying to level it up. It does not have fancy stuff like money limit, monster capture nor anything of the sorts, you can kill the boss to gain guild exp and/or do side quests. The amount of guild points you can gain is much more limited than in Onigo Hunter, but still plenty.
Nothing to write home about, this system is not particularly good nor bad, it is better than forced grinding and as a developer I can understand the appeal of using it. Well, the map seems to be much more restricted than Onigo Hunter (it uses Miden Tower as base) ─ but this is probably just an impression.
The game is good, but inconvenient at times.
Assuming you can overcome the terrible accessibility, it will keep you entertained for a while and is in overall an OK time killer with nothing to write home about besides “hey, this game is focused on passive skills!” as if it was the most innovative thing ever, and “hey, it combines stuff from Onigo Hunter, Miden Tower, Seek Hearts, Sword of Elipsia, Asdivine Kamura and others!” as if it was something unexpected (which… is not the case, Exe-Create always re-use and combine stuff, which sometimes create fun systems and in others, decent systems. This is the later). And that story is decent, but not being able to explain why because it does not deviate from the cliché.
As the game progresses, you’ll start seeing the places where they actually put some effort, and you might gradually start growing fond of the game as the characters get their chance to grow. But just like there are tiny little polished things to make the game grow on you, there are also tiny little inconveniences to cancel out the effect.
Surprisingly for Exe-Create, this is a game with a better story than gameplay. But while the story might be worthwhile, it follows the cliché in a weird way that makes harder to describe. Characters were worthwhile, story was fun, but in overall, you end up feeling a bit infuriated as if something was missing and you don’t know what is because it looks perfect already.
Overall experience: Like ordering a cake, and getting a cake. But the cake was not so tasty. You’re not sure why, it was a good cake, from a good brand, and you can say it is one of their best works. You already cakes from the brand before and they were all good. The cake is exactly how you wanted it to be. So why did it let you down? There are several sour spots in the cake, but did they really ruin the flavor? Maybe it was baked with care, but without love? Maybe the cake itself was tasty and we are overthinking this? I got mixed feelings after playing this game. It’s like most pros have an abstract con which is hard to describe, you just know it is there.
Also: Do not spend more money in the game than required to purchase it as the pricing is a rip-off, unless you have lots of spare money.
- Extensive passive system
- Delivers what you would expect from it
- Actually fun
- Terrible Accessibility (low contrast, small text fonts, etc.)
- Premium currency is too expensive to consider purchasing