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Golden Ark as it stands today.. Isn't worth it.
- 07/12/2012 06:10 AM
How was my experience with the first chapter of Golden Ark? Nostalgic. No really this game embodies the rpg maker releases of old. The heavy emphasis on destiny, powerful world changing sword, home village destroyed(Always a classic), princesses.. I feel at home here. But being reminded of the past isn't always a good thing when it comes to Rpg Maker. For example, this game is riddled with poor dialogue, characters, story, maps, repetitive and obvious commercial music(Final Fantasy VIII in this case) and Rm2k3s default side view active time battle system with Tales of battle characters. Not to mention pacing and varying levels of difficulty.. Read on if you must but I assure you, I would pass on this game. At least for now.
(This has got to be some of the worse use of lighting I've seen, and this was an improvement to the rest of the visuals throughout)
I'll start with the story. When the game begins you are being told of the story of the Golden Ark. The Golden Ark is a sword passed down through generations of the royal family, with the power to slice the world in two, only if the wielder obtains two of.. I think gems or something to be placed within the sword for it's power to come out. Anyway, this sword and the royal family are being protected by three guardians, but one day one of those guardians decides she's through with guarding and wants to get rid of the royal family to take over the land. Herein lies the problem, it's these kind of stories that have been done to death. I'm not saying it can't be done right or even well, just.. I don't know, in Golden Ark though it's just poorly executed. There were no real motivations for any of the characters. Even the main antagonist was just evil to be evil.
Gameplay wise Golden Ark doesn't fair much better. Most of it, now that I look back upon it was actually just cutscenes. You literally walk around maybe 10 maps that take about 10 seconds to walk through. There is one puzzle in the game but that just consists of walking to the next map, touching a torch and returning to the previous map. Battle wise, if you've played any Rm2k3 game you should be familiar with what's here. One thing I did notice was I never really used the attack option, always used skills as my attack was useless in comparison.
The presentation could use a lot of work. Starting with the constant clashing of graphical styles. RTP, Suikoden II to Mac & Blue, Final Fantasy VI to Tales of, bad recolors and just bad use of them as well. The maps are all over the place and the interiors are Way bigger then there exteriors. The panorama outside the castle and use of size matching monsters for the battles, but nothing was consistent. The music, although by themselves great pieces were over used and weren't utilized properly.
(My favorite part of the game)
I think it's quite clear where I stand on this game so far. It may have seemed harsh but this is my honest opinion of Golden Ark as it stands today. I'm not going to say this game is totally lost, it can be fixed up and polished over time, but if you were considering trying it out.. I would wait.