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Archlion Saga - Nintendo Switch Game Review

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bomberpunk

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[#049] Out of nowhere, here I am with a game review after being MIA for 13 months.

 

I don't like to think about how old I am or how every week there's yet another layer of BS I'm responsible for at work, or how family duties and priorities and errands consume the day. My point is, I don't have time like I used to, to start and complete a music project or start and complete a game programming project. Those days are long gone. LOL.

 

Speaking of time consuming, there are RPG games. While RPGs are not my favorite genre, I did enjoy the very few I completed in my lifetime. Some lost me with too much fluff, boring characters, or lack of interest over time. With that in mind, a few years ago I designed, coded, and pretty much finished a simple RPG game called Quick RPG. I never released it as I had a list of things I wanted to add to the in-game gimmick structure before making it downloadable. But I'll get to that in hopefully a future post. I only mention it now because it's relevant to this RPG title I downloaded on the Nintendo Switch last night and completed earlier this evening.

 

That's right, I started and completed an RPG game in less than a 24-hour period. The actual finishing time on the in-game clock is under 4 hours. I felt like this game was designed for people like me, who enjoy the RPG genre but just can't devote a chunk of time to everything that is typically required.

 

So, here we have a Kemco game called Archlion Saga. In Kemco's self-described "pocket adventure", they cut out all the bullshit and fetch quests. The game is divided into 5 chapters. Each chapter shows a progress bar and tells you what you should be doing in a popup window. There's a map you can pull up that always shows every treasure chest or door. Nothing is hidden. You can't get lost or stuck in the game because if you press the "R" trigger, an arrow path will appear to guide you to whatever you're supposed to interact with next. Sounds ridiculous, right?

 

That said, there are still a handful of useless NPCs to talk to, and there are random monster encounters when not in towns. There is quite a roster of enemies. There are turn-based battles, and weapon upgrades as well as armor upgrades. There are merchants and there are locked treasure chests that always have either a weapon or armor. 

 

I haven't played THAT many RPG games to know if any of the story is 'borrowed' from other games, but if not then they crafted one hell of a small and perfect story. There's just enough text/dialogue to keep the pace feel normal. I spent less than four hours with these little pixelated characters and I felt like I knew enough about them that this was a 3rd or 4th sequel of a continuing story. 

 

Chapter 1 opens like a typical RPG does; main protagonist kid wakes up in his bed at home and goes to talk to his mom. Some story setup takes place and then *poof* 10 years pass by.

Chapter 2 has our kid meet an elf and her pet wolf. She's kind of an outcast in her town and is the first to join your party. She's the healer.

Chapter 3 has the duo sneak into this weird guy's house after fighting off undead townsfolk. He's hiding a family secret in his basement/cave. He eventually joins the group as the brute force tank.

Chapter 4 was wild. There's a bar fight, false prophet, kidnapping, and a bloody massacre underground. But before all that a cute little girl rounds out the party as the team's morale as attribute buffer.

Chapter 5 was a gauntlet of boss battles; of characters that weren't mentioned previously. All of Chapter 5 was thrilling! Then after the final showdown (I cleared it in 39 turns), I was surprised at how the story concluded. Without giving too much away, the evil Serpent had some good in him and the good Archlion had some evil selfish motives, which ultimately affects the fate of the party you control. Shit, I didn't even mention the ever-watching Witch who transforms into a goat.

 

Even the final scene had me feeling some kind of way. Again, FOUR hours. Why am I invested in these characters like that??

This game was on sale for $2.99 in the eShop, normally $4.99. After playing through it I would have paid the full price.

 

Kemco has another "pocket-sized" game called Everdark Tower. It uses the same mechanics  / game engine as Archlion Saga. I'll be playing that next. I'll be surprised if it's better, but I hope it's at least on par.

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I completed Everdark Tower in 3 1/2 hours. I love time travel stuff and past/future "clones" so I thought I was going to be in for a wild ride, and with identical game mechanics as Archlion Saga I was sure it would be a hit with me. It was nothing like that. I only really cared about one character and it wasn't even the guy I started out with but rather the stoker girl who's father went missing and presumed dead. Everdark Tower's story started off strong but chapters 4 & 5 were garbage. Oh, this random girl named Iris won't wake up because a "time dragon" deep within her "ate her time"...

Yeah, I'm not wasting any more time talking about this game.

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