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One Broken Element: A Brutally Honest Review

  • Rezar
  • 02/05/2020 08:09 PM
  • 381 views
Stay far away from this game.

Simply put, this game is an awful, ugly and broken mess. I understand this is an old submission that will probably never be updated or even expanded on, but I digress.

PREMISE
As spoiler-free as possible, this is Your-tried-and-true typical story of saving the world from the darkness. While there are some aspects of the story that are nice, it gets boring and stale...FAST. I don't know if this is supposed to be a Star Fox Adventures/Dinosaur Planet origin story or what, but you play as Krystal and her younger sister, Emerald who lives in the town of Azeri with their father, Topaz. They are called to head off for a grand adventure. Basic stuff. Again, there are aspects that I don't wish to spoil here. I hated the characters. Very boring, annoying and characters that it was hard to relate to. These characters are very typical and in my opinion not very memorable.

DESIGN
Elements of Mikoria is what you would call an RPG with sidescrolling, platforming mechanics. The platforming elements are absolutely awful. I understand the limitations of the engine, but this broken platforming system is absolutely inexcusable. Allow me to break it down.

-You press the up arrow to jump...meaning, you can only jump up in place. This feature is largely redundant as it doesn't avoid on screen enemies or truly gets you anywhere. I've somehow got stuck in the wall and the game would hard lock, forcing me to restart.

-Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING is presented in sidescrolling view. Stairs and other objects are top down while everything else is a mixed mess of top down and sidescrolling. What would possess the developer to make stairs top down and have characters move up and down on them like a platformer? Your character never faces up or down, even when some areas are designed for it.

-Glitchfest. Glitches, glitches everywhere! I cannot stress it enough. I can't tell you how many times my game crashed with a jump or how many times I walked into an area that essentially allowed my character to ignore the jumps and float all around the screen. I see the good intentions, but this platforming system is a mess.

The RPG aspects fare a little better. It is your typical sideview battle RPG (i.e. Final Fantasy). The developer however did give it an interesting twist with invoking elements, hidden elements, switching and transforming. Be warned. These few things are literally about all that's good about Elements of Mikoria, and its nothing you haven't seen before. However, with everything else about this game there are things I don't like about this game's combat system, and I will break them down.

-The ATB gauge is ridiculously slow. It poses a problem especially towards the mid point of the game. Enemy balancing is so bad, that bosses can one shot you before you can even attack. Bosses hit unreasonably hard and often, and before you can even get one or two hits in, you're finding yourself reloading your save. In order to stand a chance, you have to hope that the enemy AI doesn't decide to spam their most powerful attack.

-No healing spells. WHAT??? This is unacceptable, especially with the difficulty of enemies in this game. The only way to heal yourself in battle is with the use of a healing item, which are UNREASONABLY EXPENSIVE. $300-$500 for a basic healing item is pretty outrageous. You're either going to have to save money or battle a lot of monsters. There is no random encounter system, so you'll have to do a lot of back tracking by entering and exiting areas to spawn enemies. This gets old fast.

-The Tech system is an okay touch, I wish you could earn more points and have a bigger maximum to begin with. It might make battles more challenging instead of broken ones. Not all is lost, however. If you find yourself low on MP, you can just use physical attacks to recover MP. You can also charge, but do it wisely because it will leave you vulnerable to attack, AND AGAIN, enemies hit often.

GRAPHICS
This is by far the worst part of Elements of Mikoria. Hands down! This game uses the default RTP, horrible charas generated sprites as well as rips and makes a less than zero attempt to blend them together. These graphics looked like they were chewed up and spat back out. They are so mangled and jumbled up that its hard to make out what anything is supposed to be. Characters often glitch out and show different characters all together. The facesets are horrible also. Especially Emerald's face graphic. As one reviewer stated, this is some bad abstract art. It would have been better to avoid face graphics all together. Backgrounds and environments also looked horrible. Distorted Mario and Donkey Kong graphics for the levels...Not good at all. Downright hideous. The only saving grace is the RTP monsters, and even then they don't match the character graphics at all.

SOUND
I don't mind playing RPG Maker games with video game music in it, but this soundtrack really rubbed me the wrong way. I liked a few of the tracks a lot, but most I felt were way out of place.

OVERALL
I hated this game. It was a horrible slog of a game. This game definitely takes itself too seriously. Elements of Mikoria can't seem to decide if its a game or an anime, and this is neither funny nor cute. There are very few good things here, but you aren't missing anything if you pass on this game, and quite frankly, you should.


Avoid this game.