Review by tanookimario

"Not as good as Secret of Mana or Seiken Deneketsu 3, but it gets the job done."

Not as good as Secret of Mana or Seiken Deneketsu 3, but it gets the job done.

The Secret of Mana series hasn't had a very memorable game since Seiken Deneketsu 3 (which was only released in Japan), which was a long time ago, back in the day when SNES was the main console. Now Square Enix has made another game in the series, Children of Mana, and let's see how it stacks up compared to the others.

This game's story line is pretty simple. There is a great tremor at the Tower of Mana, so you check it out. After getting to the top, you find an evil person (for lack of a better term) wants to cause total destruction by releasing all of the world's Mana. As the hero, you need to stop his plans from going through.

Graphics: 8/10
The graphics are pretty good. Nothing special, but pretty good. The characters look well done, and so do the enemies and the elemental spirits when they are casting a spell. The bosses look exceptionally well, as they are both detailed and fit well into the area they are in during the game.

The gameplay in this game is very good. Before you even start, you get to pick one of four characters you can be. Each of the characters have their own strengths and weaknesses. For example, Ferrik is a good offensive character, but isn't too good at using magic. Poppen, on the other hand, is a good magic user, but he lacks in offense.

First you start off with a sword, but after you start progressing in the game, you'll get a flail, bow, and a hammer. The sword is good for close combat and makes a shield when there are projectiles fired at you. The flail is good if you're surrounded by enemies, and you need to get a treasure chest over spikes or a pit, you can just use it to get it. The bow is good for indirect combat, and can put enemies to sleep. The hammer can knock enemies all over the area you are in, which is useful for a tough enemy that is bothering you.

You also get an elemental spirit of your choice in this game. Each one has their own healing and attacking ability. For example, Wisp's healing ability is to cure the hero and its attacking is to spin around in a spiral and hurt enemies, but shade's healing ability is to make the player invisible, and his attacking ability is to rapidly hurt enemies in a certain area around him.

Music: 8/10
The music fits into the game nicely. Every area's music fits into where it is. There was not one time where I had to turn the music off on my DS because the music was so unbearable to listen to.

Replay Value: 10/10
This is a very short game (took me 12 hours to beat), but isn't too overall frusturating. After you beat the game, you could try playing as a different character, where the story is altered a little bit, and you'll have to change the style of your gameplay to adapt. This is the perfect game to play when you're going on a long trip, since it doesn't get old, and it isn't that long to complete.

Conclusion: 9/10
It doesn't stack up to Secret of Mana or Seiken Deneketsu 3, but its still a pretty good game.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 11/22/06

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