Review by Psycho Penguin

"Well at least the US version is out now.."

Quick Note

This is a review of the import version of the game, not the American version. They should be largely the same, however.

Introduction

Legend of Mana is one of my favorite games on the Playstation. The greatest thing about it is that it will come out in the United States, according to SquareSoft. This is great news for the millions (and millions) of the Secret of Mana fans who were disapointed that the third game in the series (my fave in the series) did not reach the United States.

And it is now out in the United States, and will hopefully do the huge sale numbers that it deserves, because this really is a great, fun, and very entertaining game that delivers the magical feeling of the other games in the series. Think Secret of Mana with several new modes, and you have Legend of Mana!

Graphics (9.2/10)

I absolutely love the wonderful and very colorful graphics in the game. There are not 3D polygons, like Final Fantasy 7, and I am very happy about this. Like the previous games in the series, the graphics are entirely 2D and very colorful. There are sprite graphics like Xenogears but the world maps are a lot better designed than the world maps in Xenogears. Beautiful and breath-taking. The graphics remind me a lot of another great SquareSoft game, SaGa Frontier 2.

Character designs in the game are fantastic. There is a variety of character designs in the game, ranging from the main character all the way to some of the lesser known characters in the game. I like the design of the main character the best, he has a certain look to it. Too bad you really can't see much detail in the characters.

Enemy designs in the game are great, as well. I like how there is a wide variety of enemies in the game, especially when dealing with the bosses. There are several bosses, and they all have very unique looks to them. There is also a lot more detail in the enemy designs than character designs, mainly because some of the enemies are larger than the characters.

Overall, the graphics in the game are quite good. I like how SquareSoft used the watercolor look, like in SaGa 2, because I think that the series deserved to remain in 2D, and obviously SquareSoft agreed.

Music/Sound (9.2/10)

The music and sound effects in the game are quite good, and remind me a lot of its predecessor, Secret of Mana. (This is a good thing.) The music has a nice variety to it, and the sound effects in the game are wonderful. I especially like the boss theme in the game, as it sounds really well done, and up to Square's usual high standards.

Music in the game is quite good, which is to be expected. I like every theme in the game, and I definitely think that this game deserves a proper soundtrack. I like the boss theme in the game a lot, as I think Square did a great job in producing a quality battle theme. Overall, the music in the game is great.

Sound effect wise, the sound effects in the game are great as well, and every sound effect in the game sounds very well done. Everything from the sound of the weapons hitting the enemies to the sound of switching the menu items around during gameplay sound great, and don't detract from the gameplay whatsoever. Overall, the sound effects are great.

Overall, the music and sound effects in the game are top notch. The music in the game sounds great, especially the boss themes, and the sound effects sound great as well.

Control (9.3/10)

The control in this game is very good. The only reason I dont give the control in the game a perfect score is because you need to wait several seconds for your weapon meter to recharge before you can swing your weapon again. Other than that, the control, in the game is very solid and responsive. Switching between the menus during gameplay are easy, as it uses the same ''ring system'' featured in Secret of Mana and Secret of Evermore. Overall, the control in the game is great.

Gameplay (9.4/10)

The gameplay in the game is very good. The gameplay in the game is classic Secret of Mana all the way, with a little Zelda thrown in it. Basically, you and three others can walk around in real time battles, while you must wait for the weapon meter to reach 100 percent before you can swing your weapon. You can swing your weapon before it reaches 100 percent, but your hit won't be as hard.

The only other major gameplay point in the game is the addition of certin amulets. After beating a boss, you gain a certain amulet. using the amulet in the world map, you can open up new worlds on the map. Very cool and original idea. Overall, the gameplay will not disapoint the adventure game fans out there.

Overall, the gameplay in Legend of Mana is great, and reminds me of the classic Secret of Mana. This is a good thing, because Secret of Mana was such a cool game. There are also innovations to the game which makes it seem like a sequel, most definitely.

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Other Important Scores
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Replay Value: High

Legend of Mana is a great game, and it definitely has a lot of replay value. The game is so much fun to play, and has lots of secrets, but you cannot help but want to replay through the game several times. In fact, I have now beaten this game twice! How's that for replay value? ^_^

Challenge: Medium

Legend of Mana is a decent challenge, I plowed right through it though. Of course, I was a Secret of Mana expert. I bet newbies to the series will have a decent challenge ahead of them. Secret of Mana experts like msyelf will probably roll through the game.


GOOD POINTS
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-Plenty of depth, with lots of weapons, armor, etc.
-Freat watercolor graphics
-The boss theme is soooooo cool

BAD POINTS
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-It's not as innovative as I would have liked.
-The challenge level is kind of lacking.
-That's it. ^_^

Overall (9.3/10)

Legend of Mana is a very fun game from the developers at SquareSoft. It is a very, very fun game and will please all of the Secret of Mana fans out there. Enjoy Secret of Mana fans, this game is scheduled for release in the United States before the end of the millenium!!! And it is now out in America, go buy a copy and support SquareSoft!


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 06/17/00, Updated 07/16/01


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