Review by SCCAN85

"In the town of Inoa, Child of Li ... I mean uhh ... SCCAN85 writes a review :)"

INTRO

Many people don't really like Alundra. Seeing this, I decided to review it and prove every one wrong and hopefully make sure that people who read the other reviews didn't get the wrong impression about Alundra. Well, I don't mind listening to other peoples opinion so I'm not saying that they are wrong, but I feel different. I already did a review for Alundra but I think I didn't explain it as well as I could so here I am now. Anyway, Alundra is an action adventure game similar to Zelda made by Working Designs in 1997. I played this game a lot and I like it a lot. One thing that attracted some people to buy it was the cover. If you touch it feels all funny and cool. Same goes with the instruction manual. Also the designs on the front are nice. Even though I talk like I love it, it has many flaws which prevented it from being perfect. The plot and the gameplay is great, but other things that I will explain is what gave Alundra an 8 instead of a 10. Now onto the rest of the review.

STORY: (10/10)

The story is just excellent! I love it and I think you will too. Here it is. A boy named Alundra is seen on a ship. Every one stays far away from this boy because there is something definitely wrong with him. He has pointed ears and he looks like an elf. Seeing this, everyone thinks he is cursed and extremely bad luck. So this may be true or not. As nightfall comes on the ship, a huge storm occurs. The ship can't hold out and gets destroyed and falls into the depth of the water as the rest of the people do. Luckily, a jolly fat man by the name of Jess comes to the rescue and sees a boy at the ocean shores. Jess takes care of this boy and takes him home and gives him food and shelter. Finally, when the boy regains consciousness, Jess asks his name. It's Alundra! Jess immediately grows close with Alundra and tells him to make himself at home. But Alundra sees something in his dreams. A messenger gives him a message to visit some location. Alundra immediately follows orders and ventures out to the location told by the messenger. This is where the journey begins. As a big RPG fan, all I have to say is taht this story is extremely deep. There is only one town and you as Alundra get close with pretty much everyone. I don't want to spoil anything for you, but you have so many great things that will happen with the story. The story is the best part of the game.

GAMEPLAY: (10/10)

As I said earlier, Alundra is very similar to Zelda. You play as Alundra and walk through the map and find stuff, follow the story, blah blah blah. You know what I'm going to say so I'll save it. The thing that is so mysterious about Alundra is that he is a differtent race, of dreamwalkers. I know this may be a spoiler, but it's not really because you save people in your town from dreams. In each stage/ level/ or dungeon you carry a weapon and a scroll for magic. The thing that is pretty much in every dungeon is a puzzle. And these are no easy puzzles that you can just easily go through. A majority of the puzzles are extremely hard and it gets really hard. It's still fun though. There is only one town in the game, Inoa, and most of the story surrounds itself within that area. The barely different thing about Alundra and Zelda is that Zelda has hearts for life and Alundra has life vessels. There are many life vessels around the map, but you have to find them all which is no walk through the park. Magics can get upgraded from scrolls to books causing more power. The shopping is quite different and annoying. It's not really bad, but it gets annoying at times. To buy whatever item or armor or sword you have to pick up the item and throw it on the counter. This is different but is it really neccessary? Not really. The fighting is real time (I'm sure you already knew that) and the monsters aren't very hard. It mainly depends on how many lfie vessels you have and what stuff you have equipped. As in Zelda, there are some items that are required to move on with the game or to get to a secret place. When saving a game, the save point is a book. There are also places throughout dungeons where you can revitalize your health and magic. Alundra is a pretty long game so you will be occupied for atleast 2-3 weeks in case you're wondering. That's pretty much all I can think of saying. The main thing you need to know is there are a lot of fights, there are a lot of dungeons and that the storyline is great! Overall, everything about Alundra is great except for the shopping which is pointless; the way you do it.

CONTROLS: (4/10)

Tsk Tsk. The reason why Alundra did not get a perfect 10 is because the controls were very bad. No sir, I didn't like them. I didn't like them at all (- Mr. Horse).Well, the movement was OK, but the button to run was triangle and and it was not good. Mainly because when you ran you could not alter the direction very well. The game mainly programmed him to run one way and it takes awhile for him to turn. Not only is his running ability messed up, but his jumping ability isn't very good either. I can't even tell you how many times I missed jumping from one cliff to another and I know I'm not the only one. The controls were rather blocky and not very good handling. The buttons were also a little trippy. Meaning that some of the buttons were used for pointless reasons, but most of the other buttons were fine. The running and jumping was the main thing that was so bad, but that's everything of improtance for an adventurer. Overall, I didn't like the controls, but later in the game I got used to them.

MUSIC/SOUND: (8/10)

The music in Alundra has a nice ring with the game. The music shifts whenever something drastic happens, like in the dream world there are sudden shrieks or screams at certain times. Normally, the music is low beat to give it the feel that something is wrong. Usually when I played Alundra I didn't notice the music except on two parts. One would be in any zone that's not in a dungeon or town; map because just like Zelda that is where the best music is. Also, I remember and liked the music for the ape town (forgot the name). The music is really good and so are the sounds. You can hear the footsteps of Alundra running and you can hear the swipe of the sword as you kill your opponent. Also, you can hear the flail chain rattle when being swung. The sounds within the game are clear and mostly accurate. The white monkeys sound very weird, but still sound a little bit like monkeys. Everything audio wise during the game was fine and I encountered no problems with it. The music and sounds aren't great, but I liked them.

GRAPHICS: (9/10)

Not perfect, but the graphics are good none the less. All the characters look smaller then most games, but the backgrounds are big which kind of makes it feel weird. The graphics however are very detailed with rich color surrounding the entire game from dungeons to the grass in fields. A real nice thing I liked about Alundra is that when you change your weapon it shows it. Same goes with the boots and armor which makes this part very detailed. The ripples in the water is visible and even when Alundra walks or runs in the water a trail of water follows his feet. Same goes with the dust on land which can be seen if Alundra is running. When whacking bushes you can actually see the other leaves fly into the air. I really liked the graphics because it definitely looked like Working Designs put a lot of time in this and that's great. The anime cut scene in the introduction and ending of the games are great and is really fun to watch. The backgrounds all look really nice and unlike other RPGs, the other characters houses aren't the same nor opened. Alundra gives you more of a real life feel to it. The doors get locked at night and the houses are rather big. As time passes so do the people. They don't say the same thing over and over and this gives a real feel as to real life. I loved the visuals in the game and noticing all the detailed things happen is very cool. Overall, the score didn't get a 1o but in order to do that it does have to look really good too which Alundra didn't get to all the way. For being detailed, I would give Alundra a 10 any day.

CHALLENGE: (9/10)

The challenge is unbearable at times. I would've given it a 10 but then not EVERY part is extremely part. Only about a majority is. The puzzles as I said in each done is probably the hardest puzzles I've yet to play. I can't even tell you how many times my friend and I called each other or went online for help. I normally don't cheat to win, but some puzzles just required a FAQ. None of the bosses were really that challenging to me. I think the only problems were some of the last bosses, getting all the Life Vessels and Magic vessels (I know it's not called that for maigc, but I forgot) and the puzzles. The puzzles though are seriously hard. I'm not even trying to lie. I'm dead serious that it is the hardest puzzles I've ever witnessed. Well, all I really have to say is that be careful because a lot of puzzles are in that game and a lot of them are hard.

REPLAY: (7/10)

Well, if you thought that Zelda is replayable then this is replayable. I personally thought that the replay value for this game was just average. I played it once again acting like it was a movie (I'm prepared for criticism). Other than that I only did that to get anything in cased I missed anything which I did. A secret weapon which is extremely powerful, but during the first time I played I just skipped it. it takes a long time to get the secret sword and that's about the only reason why you should play this again or unless you have nothing better to do. Also don't forget about the mini games (there's not many) but in a secret cafe place you can play three games, but none of them are that fun.

PROS
- Excellent story!
- Great game play. Similar to Zelda
- Great music and sound FX
- Nice graphics

CONS
- Too damn hard!
- Running is a pain
- So is shopping
- Controls suck major!

OVERALL: (8/10)

I loved playing Alundra. I got so deep in the story that I still know the story by heart and know what happens and at what times so don't try and give me that kind of trivia :). I would recommend a purchase because with a rent you'll probably receive nothing from playing it. It's only $40 when I last saw it, but it's probably $20 now. This is a must have for any action/RPG/adventure gamers. Also, if you don't have an N64 and you want to play Zelda play this and see how much you like it. If you liked Zelda there is no doubt that you will like this. Have a nice day!

Side note: I am not making fun of Child of Light. I am just merely showing him that what he is doing is silly. He has 3 reviews of his for one game with two different names. Oh well...


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 08/27/00, Updated 08/27/00


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