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Shenlong was a better wish granter.

  • urano23
  • 01/25/2014 02:27 AM
  • 1019 views

Shinwa is a game with many flaws but It's rather enjoyable. It's not a master piece but it's entertaining and manages to keep you playing it until it's over. It's better to say it now. The ending is not that satisfying, probably because this was just the first episode of a series that was supposed to have more.
Before reading you must know that I'm not a native english speaker so I apologise for any possible mistake you might find.


Story

Well, the story is pretty simple. X time ago many people fought to get their hands in a magic stone that was able to grant their wish to any human who touched it. So, some random sages from some random town sealed it in a random tower called Druga, where it's protected by 6 beings called "The 6 keepers".
The story begins with our 3 main heroes entering to this tower searching for this almighty stone.


Yeah, tobqgwi. At least she has a normal name

The characters have almost no personality at all. They do have their own personal stories and reasons to go to the tower. Their past is explained as you make your way trough the tower with some cutscenes. However, although they have a clear motivation and objective in a game(something very important) they lack personality and background story. We never even get to see a connection between the characters. As if they were alone.
Also, there are things that are presented like natural, as if we were supposed to know what they were talking about. For example, the curse of the boy. You could have said it was a disease and it would have been okay. But apparently a curse is another thing that the game doesn't bother to explain.


What...?

Even with my complains about the story at least it's a presented in a rather unique and interesting way. It's also enough to make me want to know wether they will succeed or not when they get to the magic stone.
It's not that bad really. It just needs more character development and backstory. It feels as if it was incompleted. Maybe it was too rush.


Visuals and Audio

I combine both the visual aspect of the game and the sound because there isn't really that much to say about any of those.

Although the mapping design is not that good and sometimes it's a bit simplistic and awkward it is pretty good in it's own unique way. I actually really like how the game looks. I don't know why but there's something about the Tiles and the lighting that really hits the mark.
Some maps are way more polished than others. It's very clear that the same effort wasn't given to all the maps of the game.


This map ,for example, is pretty well designs with some details. Otherwise others are empty hallways.

I like the music used in the game but there is little variety. Most of the time we hear the same track all the time. At the begining is enjoyable, then it's okay, then it's annoying, and then you want to commit suicide.
For some reason the variety of songs using for the game itself is poor but for battles there are plenty of different songs. Infact, I think you have one different song for each boss.
The selected tracks are good and fit in the atmosphere of the game though. It does have more variety when it comes to different cutscenes.


I don't know. I guess.


Gameplay

Now, the gameplay is an interesting and fun part of the game. I've seen many games that have a pretty good presentation, setting, story, characters but completely fail in terms of gameplay. Luckily it's not the case for Shinwa.
The game has two modes. One that calls Game Mode and another one called Theater Mode. Personally I only played the Game mode so I don't know how is it on the other mode.
According to the game the Theater Mode doesn't include any puzzle. I find it hard to imagine this game without the puzzles because that's basically 60% of the gameplay.
As you advance in the tower the level changes completely and presents new puzzles and challenges. I enjoyed the puzzles honestly, I think they were original and unique. Maybe a bit easy sometimes but not boring at all. It would have been way more boring if the game had replaced the puzzles with just random battles with random bosses.


Every stage has a unique and rare puzzle, easy to solve but still fun.

On each stage you have a boss at the end after completing the puzzle. There rarely are other battles outside the bosses. The battles weren't bad but had some flaws.
At the beggining you have the three main characters to fight.
A woman called Sarah, basically the white mage of the group.
A soldier called Ashkar, the one who deals most of the damage.
And a girl called Shahenda, the useless of the group.
When you advance on the game you find spirits of the souls of some random warriors (I don't know, game doesn't explain it) that help you to fight. That was an interesting part of the gameplay at the beggining. It's fun to search keep swapping allies depending on their skills and their stats. It's a shame that is not balanced at all. Basically you always use a skeleton called Shu, an archer called Ulquiorra(Bleach anyone?), Sarah to heal the group and the one with the highest level. Infact once you get Ulquiorra, you win battles extremely easy. And when you get Shu you win all your battles by just ussing the "Attack" command. In order to beat the game after that you barely need to look at the screen really. The only battles that are slightly more difficult are the battles against the ice witch.
It had potential to have some really interesting and strategic battle mechanics but was completely wasted. Also, the characters have a lot of skills but you don't use them. Some are useless(or the basic is just better) and some require TP to be used. TP that you never have for some reason. I was never able to use a single skill with SHU.

Conclusion

In conclusion the game has many flaws but manages to be enjoyable enough to make you keep playing. It's far from a great game but far from a bad game as well. At least in my opinion. It was a pretty fun and interesting experience and I would recommend if you want to play a simple and rather short puzzle RPG.

Posts

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Thanks you fro your generous reply. I am really getting fired up after reading this review (it shows I might have some talent). It's just i am too busy with my job right now, but I will try to do the second episode.
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