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Fun, addictive, and accomplishes its aims nicely

Lunar Wish: Orbs of Fate is another indie game that attempts to mimic the JRPG style. I'm personally not a huge fan of JRPGs (I played a few when I was younger), but this game immediately caught my attention with its interesting and polished look, so I decided to give it a shot.

The characters in this game, as some other reviewers have pointed out, have very few redeeming qualities, especially near the beginning. Falk is a hubraic wannabe hero who blackmails his "friend" into abandoning her education and future in order to find some random author halfway across the world who may or may not be able to help them. Cindy is a rude, snappy bitch who steals books from her school's library. Tash murders an innocent student's pet rabbit and dumps its body into a lake to cover up the deed. Gummi is a two-faced girl who goes back on her word. The older students (their names escape me at the moment) care more about making out and flirting with each other than about the welfare of the younger students, even their own siblings.

That said, I still found the characters generally very likable and their interactions entertaining, even when things didn't make sense to me 100%. Their personalities are well-developed, and I'd rather play a game full of interesting sinners than boring saints any day of the week. In any case, the portrayal of the main characters as a bunch of self-centered assholes probably reflects the childhood experience more honestly than if they had been portrayed as sweet little angels. I remember how I acted in grade school. As Matt Stone so correctly put it, "Kids are not nice, innocent, flower-loving little rainbow children. Kids are all little bastards: they don't have any kind of social tact or etiquette, they're just complete little raging bastards."

Excellent graphics and decent mapping are omnipresent. It's nothing incredibly outstanding, but it has a very finished, professional feel to it, in sharp contrast to many other indie RPGs. It's obvious that a lot of work was put into making the game polished and professional-looking.

The gameplay will be familiar to anyone who's played a JRPG or two: complete objectives, save people from monsters, turn-based battle system, et cetera. That said, the gameplay is very addictive and fun. Some level grinding is required at certain points in the game, but not a ridiculous amount, and I liked the idea of teaching the characters new attacks and leveling up said attacks with Skill Points (which is not an original concept, but is a rather rare feature in indie RPGs). Beside that, the game features many interesting side quests to entertain players, which is always a plus, and unlike some JRPG-style indie games, it doesn't make a point of being incredibly difficult (I hate games like that).

The main weak points here are occasional weak dialogue and storytelling. Characters frequently say things that don't come off as either serious or "cute" (which I assume LusterMX was aiming for?), such as "Cats for the win!" and one character referring to all of the other characters as "pitis". (I Googled this, and according to Wikipedia, "piti" is "an acronym for a mortgage payment that is the sum of monthly principal, interest, taxes, and insurance." I don't understand what the context was in this game.) Also, some of the storyline makes little to no sense, such as a monster murdering "coke fans" who are "drunk" on coke as well as stealing coke from "the coke lady"; your characters must attempt to defeat the coke monster.

That said, the game doesn't take itself entirely seriously. Characters frequently break the fourth wall, and weird, off-the-wall shit that doesn't make much sense happens throughout the game, so strange dialogue and and an occasionally offbeat storyline are pretty forgivable. Storytelling is not the game's strong suit, but it makes up for it with its excellent graphics, decent mapping, and addictive gameplay.

I also found a couple of pretty minor bugs, such as the game allowing you to walk on tiles that you shouldn't be able to, but the bugs are few and far between, and I never did find anything major.

That said, my gripes are minor. This game is addictive and a lot of fun. Lunar Wish is not very original, so anyone expecting a revolutionary new take on the RPG genre (in terms of storytelling or gameplay) will be sorely disappointed. However, this is a very solid game that accomplishes everything it needs to in order to keep the player hooked, and it manages to be more interesting than the average pseudo-JRPG.

Posts

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" I'd rather play a game full of interesting sinners than boring saints any day of the week" Well said.
Nice review :)
"The characters in this game, as some other reviewers have pointed out, have very few redeeming qualities... I still found the characters generally very likable and their interactions entertaining"

You must be friends with some awful people.
"You must be friends with some awful people"
Life =/= games.
Dont judge people when you know NOTHING about them
Corfaisus
"It's frustrating because - as much as Corf is otherwise an irredeemable person - his 2k/3 mapping is on point." ~ psy_wombats
7325
author=chanhngoc
"You must be friends with some awful people"
Life =/= games.
Dont judge people when you know NOTHING about them

Thou mustn't speak out against Sated, he's got a doctorate in whogivesafuck, meaning he can never be wrong. Ever.
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