Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Rainbow Moon

Review: Rainbow Moon

2:00 PM on 08.23.2012 // Casey B

Tactical role-playing games gained a more mainstream momentum with titles such as Final Fantasy Tactics and Fire Emblem on the Nintendo DS due to their bright, friendly graphics and user friendliness.

After more notable hardcore strategy RPGs came onto the scene, the whole genre (along with most traditional Japanese RPGs) abruptly got neglected in favor of the new influx of Western RPGs that often includes a focus on action-oriented gameplay and flashier graphics.

In this new climate, it's a bit unusual to find Rainbow Moon as a recent addition on the PlayStation Network, as the game sits firmly within the traditional constraints of early SRPGs. Despite its vast universe and diverse customization options, Rainbow Moon fails to make a splash in a genre that deserves a much-needed revival.

Rainbow Moon (PSN)
Developer: SideQuest Studios
Publisher: EastAsiaSoft
Released: July 10, 2012 
MSRP: $14.99

Rainbow Moon's story begins rather abruptly with the main protagonist, Baldren, getting warped through a magical portal into a new world by his arch-rival Namoris. Baldren is blamed by the locals for all of the monsters appearing lately, and it becomes his duty to find his rival and most importantly, get back to his home.

In several hours of gameplay, the main story never really deviates from this, nor does it add any sort of intrigue or wonder to the world as a whole. One of the biggest crimes of Rainbow Moon's story is that characters you gain along the way are generally collected unceremoniously through fetch quests, and aren't really given any sort of interesting backstories.

In fact, the game generally progresses through a series of fetch quests that make the mechanics of Rainbow Moon show through early on and wear thin quickly. There isn't much voice work in the game, either, though the little bit of it you'll find can get grating and old before long (the healer, who you'll rely on throughout the game, is an especially irritating example of this).

Of course, story isn't the primary draw of strategy RPGs and where Rainbow Moon does admittedly shine is in the actual battle-to-battle gameplay. The combat takes place on large grids where each character has a basic attack and special attacks gained through scroll purchases and leveling up. Like most SRGPs, the combat plays out like an ever-shifting game of chess, where each attack needs to be planned intelligently in order to maximize hits and defend properly.

Sometimes enemies drop bags of loot, and a risk/reward system comes into play in moving characters to the loot locations while still in battle in order to maximize the potential of the type and amount of loot you gain through battles. Loot plays a big part in Rainbow Moon, as a good chunk of the game is devoted to managing your resources so that you use raw materials to upgrade your weapons and equipment, or simply sell the materials to get better equipment.

There are many other more passive factors that may come into play during a battle, such as the type of weapons your characters use and their viability against enemy weapons, or your positioning on the battlefield and skills that may enhance your party through smart placement. The game has an incredibly gradual learning curve; passive skills barely even play an important role in the first few hundred battles.

In fact, the biggest downfall of Rainbow Moon is that it takes it just a bit too easy on the player. You can save absolutely anywhere as long as you're not engaged in a battle, and if you do die, it becomes not much more than a slap on the wrist, as you aren't really punished for death beyond having your health and mana points completely drained and forcing you to seek out a healer to spend hard-earned "Rainbow Coins" to bring your condition back to normal. This might provide its own challenge if the healers weren't nearly always within very close vicinity; tougher dungeons generally become frequent returns to the closest healer instead of any sort of strategic stocking of your supplies.

Despite all of my complaints, there is certainly something to be said about Rainbow Moon's main gameplay: like comfort food, it is easy to digest and always reliable. I found myself going back to the game for second and third helpings not necessarily because I believed the game would show me something new and innovative, but because the familiar strategy and loot grab elements made the gameplay generally engaging and dare I say it -- even fun.

However, after around 20-30 hours of a repetitive grind-quest that found me repeatedly leveling up to take out enemies in a given area and defeat a boss only to approach new enemies that would require another few hours to once again level up and do the same, I still saw no engaging story in sight and my interest waned. I had acquired several characters in my party and had even leveled up their skills and given them new skills, and yet knew of no interesting backstory for any of them or any truly compelling reason to why they were aiding me on my quest.

Admittedly, I don't believe I got anywhere near finishing the game in my hours of playtime, though in many ways, the game feels a lot like a casual iOS title in that it doesn't demand too much of the player other than their time. If the game had an engaging story and actually felt more like a "game" than a procedural chore, I would have been committed to finishing it properly. Instead Rainbow Moon offers you the gameplay you love, with none of the charm or interest.



Rainbow Moon - Reviewed by Casey B.
Amicable - A presentable but unmemorable time. Focusing on the bright spots helps, and I appreciate the effort, but I won't be playing this repeatedly.

See more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.

Casey B, Contributor
 Follow Blog + disclosure CaseyDtoid Tips
Casey Baker is passionate about all things video game, and has been this way since very young. His earliest memories involve trying to get E.T. out of a hole. Casey plays nearly all genres of g... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Rainbow Moon

  Dec 03

Impressions: Rainbow Moon (Vita)

Pretty much the same, but portable

  Nov 02

Rainbow Moon touches down on Vita this December

Special discount for owners of the PS3 version

View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:

Please contact Crave Online, thanks!

Solar Pony Django's Review on: Animal Crossing Amiibo Festival

Indivisible exposes why forced diversity and its proponents keep failing

Steam Controller Review

RAE - Back in Town

Thankful it's ov

Half - Life 3 FINALLY 100% confirmed...maybe.

Surprisingly... I'm *really* enjoying Fallout 4!!

Where the Hell is Breath of Fire?

Comments of the Week - バーガーベスト, ですよね?

My Month in Games - November 2015

 Add your impressions

Status updates from C-bloggers

SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Triple brown, triple brown, triple brown meow. Triple brown, triple brown, triple brown meow.
Alfie avatarAlfie
Was on the front page and was greeted by a new post, which I clicked to find "You cannot see the future". Then refreshed and it was gone. I saw Chris's post on Eight Days' cancellation as it was brought, new and unready, into the world! Rare and wonderful
Archelon avatarArchelon
Community Question: Have you ever purchased a game only to regret it later and then sell it/give it away, only to even later regret selling it and wind up purchasing it again?
gajknight avatargajknight
A decadent staircase adorned in gold rises into infinite darkness. Writhing beings beyond comprehension lurk in the shadows, their mere presence encroaching on the edges of human understanding. A blood moon glows . I am losing my mind. I need more eyes...
Mike Wallace avatarMike Wallace
We need to be implanted with microchips because I'd really like to know how much time I've spent playing different video games my entire life.
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Today's agenda: job-hunting and startup of a second playthrough of either Phantom Dust or Front Mission 4. I can't decide. I'm on a sixth-gen kick.
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
If there are rainbows in Xenoblade Chronicles X, Reyn must be in it as well. You can't have a rainbow without Reyn, baby!
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
I really hope Xenoblade become it's own franchise, it has way too much potential to simply being reduced to 2 games.
Sotanaht avatarSotanaht
Touchable Holograms? When this eventually matures and hits market, almost all our regulars will vanish for weeks.
Serethyn avatarSerethyn
Xenoblade Chronicles Wii for €10? Sure, Nintendo, don't mind if I do!
KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
Super Smash Bros. 4 has too much content. So much so I almost don't want a sequel. I honestly hope that NX gets a "Super Smash Bros. For NX" port rather than a new installment. It could be a GOTY edition and come with all of the DLC.
Batthink avatarBatthink
Flegma avatarFlegma
Bought my first full-priced physical 3DS game ever - New Style Boutique 2: Fashion Forward. I'll try to write a post on the previous game at some point before doing the same with NSB2.
Terry 309 avatarTerry 309
How do you guys manage to buy all these games at day 1 with such huge backlogs?
FlanxLycanth avatarFlanxLycanth
Guys if I were to do a thing, how many of you would watch my thing because I was thinking of doing a thing but I dunno if people really like that kinda thing so I just wanted to know if you liked that thing because I'm thinking of doing a thing, you know?
Atleastimhousebroken avatarAtleastimhousebroken
Bayonetta 2 is 40% off in the EU Nintendo eShop today. If you have a WiiU and don't have this game you are a horrible person and I want nothing to do with you. You can amend your errors by buying it. Xenoblade Wii is also 50% off as well.
El Dango avatarEl Dango
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Protag shipping is best shipping. [img][/img]
El Dango avatarEl Dango
My dreams are really weird and scary, so I hope it's okay if I let them be dreams.
Fenriff avatarFenriff
Finally played the last two Shantae games. Risky's Revenge wasn't bad, but Pirate's Curse was damn good.
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -