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Great Game that likes to Waste my Time

Revelation Chronicles, Edel Sky is an interesting little gem that I came across on the Review Drive's main page. After finding the game's profile interesting, I decided to give it a go.
Now as a note, this review will only cover the first two chapters- out of the four that are in the game as of 7/14/2012

♫Story & Writing-
The story follows Ether Animulus, a Kanotian who is working to bring down the central government for committing acts of genocide on his race.
The plot itself is very simple, but does foreshadow quite a lot. Could the government really be evil? Could this Kanotian race really screw up the world if not dealt with? This plot has promise.
Unfortunately, the game doesn't do a very good job of keeping my interest early game. This is mainly because of the government's soldiers, and how they are written (see ♫Characters for more detail.)
With that, I didn't quite care a whole lot about the plot. But I can sense the presence of something epic. It's just a matter of getting there.


Now to the writing. I find most of it competent. Some scenes overdose on the ellipses, but it doesn't get too annoying.
Now what really, made me hate the dialogue was the creator's undying love for pauses.
Dialogue...
Does not...
Work like this...
In an interactive experience.
And I'm not a very fast reader. If these pauses are boring me- you have a problem. And before you ask- no, you cannot skip cutscenes.
And there's a lot...


-overall, 3.
I would lower it to 2 if this was centered around myself. However, if one is interested in the dialogue, then playing this game won't be a problem...for the first play through. Good luck enjoying your second!

♫Characters-
From chapter 1 and 2, we meet quite a few interesting characters. Ether, Mana, and Creux will be your party members-
While Kozi, Syou, and Violette come up as NPCs.
I found these characters enjoyable.

One problem, however, is the fact that this game tries a little too hard to be an E-RPG. And by that, I mean most characters fit the easy-to-guess roles.
For example, the first thing I think when meeting Mana is 'She'll be in my bed by the end of this game, no?'
And that's something that personally gets to me. However, the character's dialogue does stay intriguing. And some of it really did make me enjoy watching these very... annoying... and tedious... non-playable... unskippable... 'Jargon.'

And while we're talking about character problems, let me hit on the Government's soldiers, and Kozi.
For some odd reason, the government must hire the most idiotic and inhuman soldiers. I don't know if this was intentional or not, but I felt as though the almost cartoony soldiers really put a hole in this plot.

Onto Kozi--another Kanotian who gladly helps Ether. The problem lies in small aspects of the game's coding.
For one, half of chapter 2 is about saving Kozi who was captured by the government. The problem lies on how powerful Kozi is.
This guy can hit for 9999 damage, in AoE form. Bro, What?
So if I have this straight, Kozi basically let himself get caught, only for Mana to one shot every guard who teleported him to the prison.

Along with this, there is a boss fight where Kozi can be hit with AoE friendly fire. And when this happens, Kazi promptly one shots my party.

T-T 'I have healing equipment, you bitch- and I'm not here for my health.'

So either he’s evil and my characters are stupid for not guessing this already, or Kazi is downright crazy. Either way, this plot point was very awkward.


-overall, 3.
Please nerf Kozi :-)

♫Aesthetics-
This game is sexy to say the least.
The anime style is nicely drawn.
The tile sets are all nicely placed.
The sprites are very well detailed, and have a whole lot of attitude in the movment designs.

I don't really have a huge problem with anything in the graphics,
other than the fact that some tile sets don't really give that future feel to it. Not enough, at least.

Also, there was a few mapping issues. One major one allowed me access to an area
that would kill me because you need a certain party member for it.
But I'm sure most of the issues were fixed in the patch I did not pay attention to downloading. Silly me...?

-overall, 4.5. I didn't count the mapping bugs in this rating.


♫Music & Sound-
Not a bad sound track at all. Most tracks fit the scene, and the battle themes kick ass!
My only problem was that there were some overused songs. I don't know if they're RTP or not, but all I know is I've heard them in every other RM2K3 game.
-overall, 4. Creator, PM me the song you used when fighting Syou. I want that on my 'use for inspiration' playlist :D


♫Gameplay-
I love the game play. I really do. The creator obviously put effort in making some interesting concepts on the default RM2K3 battle system. It's easy not to confuse this game's general gameplay from another RM2K3 game.
The RM2K3 battle system isn't very good, but this game does a good job of hiding its flaws.
The charm of Edel Sky is what makes this game unique and fun- even a future featured game. But I'm not a fan boy, and I will never be a fan boy. So let's hit on some problems.

Firstly, I found that not having a heal spell was tricky at low levels. There are two times where I cannot go back to the town and buy healing equipment. This means that if I was to run out, I would screw myself over completely.

Along with this, I felt as though the characters were imbalanced. I don't know if I was doing something wrong, but Mana seemed to dominate everything. Her AoE skills did just as much damage as Ether's major skills, and she can afflict all debuffs on the target.
Wow.
And Creux was basically Ether, only with a mana drain and bad mana regain- making him a lot weaker with my play style.

Also I should bring up the Fire Dungeon. Its design was a bit over-the-top, and made me frustrated. This is not because of this dungeon's puzzle, but because every step will deal damage to my party. And if I don't check my health and fight something, I may get one shot by the first-turn AoE spell. Well Darn...

But with all that said, let me talk about my number one major problem with this game. The Run/walk system.
Good lord, why? Well there is a reason in later chapters. But WHY now when this is the point where you need to be enticing me?
The main problem with this system is that after 5-ish seconds of running, you must walk the cat walk for 1 to 2 seconds before being able to run again. Okay; interesting concept, bro. It didn't bother me for the tutorial dungeon.
But this game has some pretty open maps. Therefore, treading the game with this system will drive one insane.
Unless the game is either really, really packed in, or uses some amazing "it took me 2 days to make this one map," design, I cannot accept this.
Hell, in my play through, I clearly abused a jumping bug that made me perma-run. Why? Because walking .5 mileanhour isn't fun.
This, along with the slow dialogue, would've made me rage quit before completing the first real dungeon.

I'm not joking; best bug ever. And a player shouldn't abuse your game to have fun.
(And as a small note, if possible- keep the R&W feature, but disable it in places that have me running a marathon.
Don't allow this feature to plague me. Please ;.;

-overall, 4.5. A LOT of these errors can be fixed, but if the creator did not do so, I would be forced to lower the score to 2.0 for pissing me off.


♫Overall-
4 Most problems comes down to the fact that the creator doesn't have testers.
I would personally test for you, but I'm kind of busy :/
This game also deserves something more than N/A, so I'll break my demo rule for you =^.^=

I recommend a play through of this game and/or follow its progress- if you enjoy E-RPGS. However, It might pay for you to wait for a newer patch.
(I just couldn't see myself replaying through all that slow dialogue again.)

( Feel free to leave comments on how I should improve my reviews.)

Posts

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I pretty much fully agree with this review, lol and having played the version before the Run/Walk feature was included, I did find it quite annoying switching back and forth, so as soon as I discovered that epic bug to disable the thing I never switched back to walking again..

Mana also seemed to be more OP'ed than she used to be, though one thing that I've wondered about while playing this, is occasionally the characters hit for 0 damage on enemies. Is that just a replacement for missing or something? :o
@Christopher
Hey! I really liked your review, even though it only covered two chapters. Regardless, it's good to see someone finally took the liberty of writing one. xD

Anyway, I am going to answer some questions here:

  • The slow dialogue, definitely going to fix that in the next update.

  • Some of these Government junkies are indeed very cartoonish, but to answer your question: Yes, that was intentional-- for Comic relief. However, in the later chapters, you will encounter more "government junkies" who are downright serious, resourceful, psychotic, or gentle. (Which I think will make the public think "I want to know who the !@#$ is the recruiter for these people.")

  • I should make it so Kozi just warns you and doesn't kill your entire party. Makes much more sense that way.

  • Mana being overpowered. I thought the recent update's "Flow System" limited her access to her AoE attacks, or are her AoE attacks just that deadly? Either way, I'm going to fix some of these character imbalances as it is essential to enjoying the game.

  • Run/walk system. Yeah, I agree on that too. However, that was patched in the recent update of the game to the point that you can actually LEVEL UP your stamina so you can run longer.

    EDIT: I saw your media and that bug you talked about was still present... Hmmm. I am going to try my best to fix this yet again. The media itself is doing great help to me so far since I can get a clear head of what's right and what needs to be fixed.

    EDIT 2: I might reconsider on removing that system entirely.

@Sana:
Pretty much the random "0" means "Miss", but in the game's terms, it means "Block". I am thinking of revamping the whole damage system yet again since I learned something while working with a fellow gentleman who was working on a spin off for this game. So be prepared for that!

@General Public:
GAME TESTERS ARE APPRECIATED! This will not only increase the production quality but gives me a better thought of what's there to fix as well.
Mana's mostly overpowered since she charges up an extra FP than the others, and because of that, gains access to either of the two AoE attacks that dish out damage around the same as Ether's strongest attack though his only hits one..

She was better balanced this way when the max FP was 10, though as she is now, she's the strongest character damagewise you can play as~ (Which isn't a bad thing! ^o^)
I'll make sure to play any newer build of this game. I'll also probably record any new things for ya :3
And like I said on the review, can ya PM me the name of the boss theme, when fighting Syou? I really like that song x-3
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