Review by Ragnarok_Reborn
"A true testament to fun."
Note: This Review is based on the 2001 re-release of Ys Eternal I.
In an age where video games have come to a peak in complexity, many still reign high in mediocrity. Games often don't appeal to that sense of fun and adventure one expects to have, and become dull quickly. Yet, some games, simple as they appear, manage to captivate their audiences, and deliver a fun experience.
I present to you: Ys I. :P
Story: (10/10) In the Kingdom of Esteria, a powerful Storm Barrier generated by demons has severed all ties from the outside world. Demons run rampant through villages and forests,and humanity lives in fear of the inevitable threat.
A man named Adol Cristin, the main character, has his ship sink, and gets washed up on Esteria. Saved and in debt to the militiaman who saves his life, Adol decides to repay him by helping and joining the militia.
From there, the game grows to epic proportions, and delivers a short, adventurous, and slightly romantic tale. Though it isn't incredibly complex, it manages to suck in the audience, and gives the game a purpose as Adol works toward defeating the evil demon army of Dark Fact.
Gameplay: (10/10) The gameplay of Ys I and II is rather unique, in that there's no attack button.
Yes, you heard right. You bump into an enemy to attack them. Yet, there's a skill to it. One cannot run full force into an enemy, but must exploit the enemy's weak point. It isn't rare to circle around an enemy 9 or 10 times, looking for an opening in their defense to strike at. The game starts out easy, and by the final boss, ends mind numbingly difficult. Despite this, it always provides a relaxing challenge, and never manages to be frustratingly hard.
Adol will ultimately explore a myriad of areas, from dangerous caves to mountain peaks, to a gigantic 25-floor dungeon.
The game isn't too long, and clocks in at about 8 hours. Despite this, it's quite fun to replay, and with multiple difficulty modes, adds strongly to the replay value.
Sound: (10/10) Sound effects and music are overall very impressive. The tunes are catchy and memorable, and manage to fit the setting well. This contributes to the overall positive experience of the game.
Graphics: (10/10) Rather than adopting dark, grainy graphics, Ys delivers easy-on-the-eyes graphics with "Chibified" sprites. Most graphics in the game are akin to polished Super Nintendo graphics. From Lush Forests, to almost pitch-black caves, to fantastic scenery from high-up towers, the game manages to deliver a tranquil, wondrous experience, and you'll often finding yourself pausing to look out at the landscape from the peak of a tower.
Worth a buy?: Though Ys is difficult to find, English patches are available online, breaking through the culture barrier. The game, overall, is most certainly worth a play.
Ys itself simply tries to deliver a fun, pleasurable experience to those who can appreciate it. It's truly a fun game, and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys an old school feel in their gaming experience.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 03/12/07
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