Review by Shogain
"Changing the past has never been so tedious."
Have you been playing Phoenix Wright on your DS lately? Wonder what other games are like that? Well, look no further, this is just like phoenix wright, but it's less enjoyable and involves time traveling. It actually sounds interesting, considering how you can time travel and change the past to save somebody, but once you do it yourself, it's not that great of a feeling. The game is nothing more than a mediocore anime-ish game. It does have some neat twists in there, but it doesn't hide the fact that the story is shallow.
The story is about Ethan Kairos, a teenager who's anticipating his upcoming birthday. For his birthday, he wants a clock he saw in a magazine article(or something similar). But before his birthday, everything around him changes. His room, the person he lives with, and even his friend. Confused, he finds a green pen, and does his first time change for the first time. After that, you go through the game helping out your friends, changing the past, and stopping even a more sinister character. For me, the story at first was nothing interesting. Then, it got even more better, but as everything begin to make sense, I thought the story was very simple, and that it was too simple. If it weren't for it's short cast of characters, it wouldn't be so bad. Overall, I give it a 6.6 for the story.
The gameplay is pretty simple. Even a first grader can figure it out. The point of the game is to go around the map, talk to people, close time holes, and advance through the plot. It's that simple. If it weren't for the bad dialouge, and the absurd calmness of the characters, it wouldn't be so bad. In the menu, you can look up characters, items, and flashbacks. Flashbacks are what helps you in the game, and to refresh your memory. These flashbacks indicate what happened in the past, or what you caused when you closed a hole. The gameplay is very basic, and it just felt tedious to go around the same places over and over, and talk to the same characters. Overall, I give the gameplay a 6.0.
I thought the graphics in the game was pretty neat. The character designs, the environment, and the animations in the game had a great atmosphere. I don't think I had any problems with the graphics, and it sure didn't have any flaws. The environment in Time Hollow certainly fitted the story, and I thought it captured the look of a small Japanese town. Overall, I give the graphics a 7.9.
The sound and music was done very well by Tenky. I actually like it more than the gameplay, graphics and the story. The sounds of suspense in the air, the sounds of jazz in Chronos, and everything about the sound was done well. I also liked the music in the game. Even though it was pretty much the same stuff over and over, it fit quite well. Overall, I give it an 8.0.
Final Word -
Even though my review may be harsh, don't let it get all over you. I think the game deserves a high 6 rating, which isn't bad at all. If you like simple games, and need some time to waste, this game is the game for you. Whether your driving in the car, waiting for something, it'll be the perfect time to pop in Time hollow. But I'll warn you, I would only buy it for 20 dollars or less. 30 dollars or more is just TOO much for such a simple game as this.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 10/16/08
Game Release: Time Hollow (US, 09/23/08)
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