Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Impressions on Growlanser: Wayfarer of Time

This is a post from Google+

Immediately I'm taken back to another time. Not because the art style is incredibly "90's", the game calls out to the time when RPGs ruled the home consoles. Names like; Breath of Fire, Legend of Dragoon, Legend of Legaia, Grandia, Final Fantasy, SaGa Frontier, and Secret of Mana were the experience.

Fifty hours melted away and gamers were dropped in fascinating and unique worlds. Keyword, unique. Interesting concepts and RPGs as a whole are not what used to be.  The Growlanser series isn't new either. I've heard about it from time to time, but never bothered trying. As it is, this is my first Growlanser, and by the sounds of it, one of the best.

I was a little taken by surprise by the amount of player choice in the game. RPGs, and especially Strategy RPGs, are fairly linear. While it is linear to a point, there is enough customization and altered story branches that make every experience somewhat unique. Persona is comes to mind at being similar in this mechanic.

A game like Growlanser wouldn't be complete without waifus, and waifus there are! How this did not appear as a bullet on the back of the case is beyond me. There is a reason this game has 46 different endings. 3 main paths with differing outcomes based on waifu relationships. Yes please! From what I hear there is a little something for the animated fellas. Bros watch out for each other.

So far all the right buttons are being pressed. Story is engaging and keeps pushing me forward, characters are well personalized, combat has the right amount of difficulty and strategy so I'm not bored. Hopefully the game doesn't lose steam.  Current downsides being the magic/knacks/ring system is a little too complicated and makes grinding feel a little tedious. Not only do I have to worry about EXP, but ARP, which levels and makes characters learn magic. Certain missions are also cheap, almost being up to chance if things will work out for the player. Missions are usually accompanied by cutscenes and there is no way to skip or make the dialogue go faster; a real pain when restarting.