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Lucent Heart: Stadia [PC]





Flawless.... Absolutely flawless... This may very well be the most beautiful RPG Ive ever played. Period.

10

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Just Right
Time Spent:
10 to 20 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Masterpiece"

Summary

AMAZING! This game is a behemoth.

This review will be in three parts.... Story, Gameplay, Music.

-Story-
Fortunately, this game doesn't rely on past game story's at all so anyone can play this game and not get confused down the line.

The story starts off with the main Character, Adol, and his companion, Dogi, arriving on the shore of Dogi's birth land, Felghana. Adol and Dogi had traveled there to investigate the rumors of death and monsters roaming Felghana. As Adol and Dogi start traveling towards Dogi's hometown of Redmont they find a young woman being pursued by hounds, this is your first fight, you slay the beasts and save the girl. As you talk to her, she reveals that her, her brother and Dogi used to be best of friends when they were kids. She also reveals her brother has gone missing.

Now, I don't want to ruin the story for you but the story revolves around you investigating the evil of the island, which has to do with 4 statues gaurded by 4 beasts and dodging the Evil Lord McGaya who wants them as well. And while your doing this, the girls brother (Chester) whos in cahoots with McGaya, ruthlessly hunts you down for the statues, this leads to you fighting him many times.

-Gameplay-
The gameplay is standard, but amazing. Pretty much you go to town, somethings wrong, they ask you to solve the problem, you go to a dangerous Place/Dungeon/Temple, explore and fight. Now, that may seem very simple, but the story progresses immensely like this. Your main weapon in the game is swords, which can be upgraded for more power. Your main armor is body armor and shields. These can also be upgraded for more defense. You also get magic Items/weapons in the game, bracelets. These bracelets can be used anywhere in a dungeon. There are 3 ad they all posses a elemental power, fire, wind, and earth. They all are attack oriented so naturally they are really strong. They can also be used to get though obstacles. With fire, you can throw flames. You can use that to light torches.Wind lets you glide (You jump and do a sword-spin with wind carrying you), so you can use that to get to extremely far platforms. Earth lets you do a shoulder bash, this lets you break cracked walls. Your sword attach does around five fast slashes for a normal combo. As you land more and more hits, a gauge fills up which when filled lets you attach faster and do a longer combo for a short amount of time.

-Music-
My favorite soundtrack to date. I cant explain how great this soundrack is because my words just cant do it justice. There are a medley of rock tracks as well as soft violin and such. The best track in the game is Valenstien Castle theme. I cant play through it without putting down my contoller, closing my eyes and listening... Its that amazing.

Overall, this game is a masterpiece and if you love RPGs, it is your obligation to play this game.




A fast paced action game recommended for anyone who loves button mashing.

9.5

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Hard
Time Spent:
10 to 20 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Just plain fun"

Summary

The Ys series is not very well known in the States. It is, however, a great franchise.

Gameplay:
While earlier titles in the Ys series championed simplistic combat consisting of running into enemies, The Oath in Felghana finally abandoned that formula for a more involved combat system. The controls are tight and easy to grasp. However, there are shortcomings. You're basically limited to a few moves. A sword plunge, a on-the-ground combo, and a few rather useless in-the-air slashes. There are also 3 types of magic, but chances are, you'll be using only one most of the time outside of boss fights. Therefore, you'll spend most of your time basically fighting different enemies the same way throughout the entire game. The game really shines in boss fights. The bosses are challenging, and none of them are fought the same way. You might find yourself stuck on a boss for a fairly long time even after you've seen the same attack pattern dozens of times before. In some cases, it's almost like a bullet hell shmup in 3D form. Which brings me to my next point. This game is tough. As in it's enough of a challenge on normal. There are hard and nightmare modes after each successive difficulty you beat, but you have been warned. Be prepared to hack your way through dungeons and bosses more than once.

Graphics:
The Ys series has never been short of pretty scenes, and if the combat ends up boring you, the scenery definitely won't. In a sense, it's almost like a Zelda game. You have your icy mountain stage, your lava filled pit, your sewers, your castle, and your evil corridors of doom. Nothing too special, but enough to keep a person interested.

Music:
For those of you who don't know... the Ys series has produced more soundtracks than Final Fantasy. 'Nuff said.

Story:
Standard Ys formula, really. Evil demon tries to take over whatever land Adol happens to be in, and it's up to our red haired hero to save the day. And a girl. But anyway, the story works well, with a completely unexpected plot twist in the middle. It's interesting enough for you to play through until the end, but as far as RPGs go, it's fairly standard.

A great game for anyone who loves a little action, but it's a short game if you only plan on playing once.




A beautiful Action RPG that many really need to play.

9.0

Editors' Choice
Difficulty:
Just Right
Time Spent:
10 Hours or Less
The Bottom Line:
"Highly addictive"

Summary

I was recommended to play this by a fellow GS user, now that he's gone, I felt that it was appropriate to at least play it in his honor or memory or whatever. Sappy? Yea probably, but I can see why he was so eager in getting people to play it. In short, Ys: The Oath in Felghana is a beautiful action RPG that is sure to have fans of the genre and beginners (like myself) to find it amazing.

Now I'm not action RPG enthusiast, I've played Action RPGs such as Tales of and Star Ocean, both have their charms, both are fairly fun and engaging but what Ys: The Oath in Felghana does different is do it perfectly, or near flawlessly. It has fast paced action and battling with incredibly music to go with the flow. It's a remake, but it never feels like one. If you haven't played the original Ys III, you'd never think it was, and that's just a bonus. A remake, that doesn't feel like one, I think that alone deserves some merits.

While it doesn't stray too far off from the original, it does bring new mechanics in. The combat seems to follow more suit to another Ys game, The Ark of Napishtim. The battles are simplistic, with a single button to do your attacks, you can easily mash away and perform neat, fast paced and satisfying combos that hack away at your enemy without feeling it tedious or troublesome. You'll also eventually gain the ability of magic, increasing your arsenal of attacks. Certain monsters seem to only be affected by magic so it's essential to gain the benefit of being able to use it. You'll soon gain the ability to charge up magic, granting you even an even stronger attacks, overall magic is essential in the game, not only in battle, but while exploring dungeons as you may need the Fire Ring to light torches, the Wind Ring to cross gaps, the Earth Ring to shatter weak walls, magic is important, and it does a good job emphasizing that. There's also a "special" bar, think of it similiar to a Limit Break or a Overdrive mode, pressing V when the bar is full (or the somewhat half circle thing) allows you do perform stronger attacks in a quicker succession without being flinched by enemy attacks. You can perform little aerial combos as well by jumping and mashing Z. While battling, enemies will drop bonuses, such as increasing speed, increasing STR, EXP bonuses, healing items, it gives it a good flow to it, forcing you (not that you'd mind at all) to constantly keep the combat flowing from one enemy to the next, and you know what? It's simply satisfying to do so. Being able to slash your way through a horde of enemies is beautiful and fun in Ys: The Oath in Felghana.

In terms of story, it's rather simplistic. It's nothing too fancy, it won't break your heart or leave you in tears. There's trouble afoot, and you, the hero, Adol, must vanquish the evil that is before it's too late. The simplicity of the story coincides with the simple combat, which is good, sometimes being simple makes for the better games. There's no thought provoking ideas in it, no philosophical meaning or hidden message, it's to the point and considering it's a remake of an old game, I'm not too surprised. Though there is still some charm in each of the key characters you meet, the emphasis isn't to try to bring you into their world, but to simply give you a nice background as to how, what, why, where and when rather than throw you into a world leaving you with questions unanswered. At times the story can be predictable, but it still got a "Oh snap!" moment from me, and if a simple story can do that, I think that's a winner in my books.

Difficulty wise, can be different for everyone. Course there are different difficulties to chose from when you start, but for the non Action RPG aficionados like myself, it's best to go on the Easy route first. Normal is a fair challenge but there are some bosses that can be a bit tricky. Of course you'll most likely be doing various runs of this game regardless as it is THAT fun. Which brings up longevity, it's not a long game. It can probably take a day or two to finish it all up. While it is short, it is fun, and with multiple difficulties, you won't mind the length at all.

In terms of music, it's beautiful. That's all that can be said. The boss battles, the different areas, who knew it would work so well? The various scores makes it rather fun to listen to while you play.

Overall, Ys: The Oath in Felghana is a fantastic game that took me by surprise. It boasts a beautiful music track coupled with simple combat and a simple story to make one fantastic remake, that could've easily feel like a game all on it's own.

It's a game that many seriously need to play.
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