Imagine that you did something really stupid yesterday. Maybe you farted in front of a beautiful girl on the train. She smiled at you when she first saw you, but your rank emission turned that smile to a frown, and all was lost. She was probably into you, but now you'll never know.
If your world was like that of DS RPG Radiant Historia, you'd be able to go back to a key decision point in your life and change things for the better. Let's say that you warped back to the moment right before you let one. It could work out, or it could be that she sees your wincing face and knows that you're holding one in. Or, you could warp back to earlier that morning, armed with the knowledge that a foot long chili dog wasn't the best lunch idea.
Radiant Historia takes this ability of being able to bounce to key moments in time and makes a deep, enjoyable RPG.
Radiant Historia (DS)
Keeping track of the happenings of two lines of alternate history could be really confusing. Thankfully you're aided by a menu option that gives you full timelines for both paths of history, with key decision points clearly marked, and ample reminder notation at each of them. By using the power of the White Chronicle, you'll be able to visit the the special space in between time, called Historia. There you will be able to choose what point of time on these timelines you would like to go back to. Once selected, you'll be whisked away to the past, where you'll have to relive all of your previous actions. The only difference is that you have knowledge of what will happen in the future, and now you can try to change the course of time. To give any example would easily spoil the fun you'd have in making the decision for yourself. Just know that the team behind this game did a fantastic job of creating a deep, involving story
Radiant Historia has good looks to match the strong gameplay and story. The sprite-y background graphics and characters took me back to the 16 and early 32-bit JRPG days, The detailed art and character portraits had me thinking that this is one of the better looking DS RPGs. It also sounds great, thanks to composer Yoko Shimomura, who was also the composer of Parasite Eve and the Kingdom Hearts games, among many others. There's a mysterious and beautiful theme that runs throughout her compositions for this game, which greatly compliments the story. This is just the next great soundtrack in her long list.
Finally, while Radiant Historia does a nice job of dancing just outside the now tired JRPG tropes, one does rear its ugly head a few too many times. Be prepared for the whole boss-after-a-boss thing, multiple times. I'm pretty certain that no one falls for the scene where you thought you killed a boss only to find that it's not quite dead, or is going to evolve into something stronger. We stopped falling for that in the 1990s, didn't we? The creators of this game didn't get that memo. There were a few instances that bordered on annoying with the bosses not dying. In one boss-after-a-boss instance toward the end I screamed "Are you serious?!" at my DS in public and embarrassed myself.
THE VERDICT - Radiant Historia
Reviewed by Dale North
|10:30 PM on 02.10.2012|
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