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Sep 28, 2011

Cristal Story Review

Fresh from Lan's Trash, Emmanuel Salva Cruz brings us Cristal Story, an amazing classic RPG with tons of content, certain to fill your role-playing needs for several hours, because sure as hell it filled mine.

A well known battle setup, very well executed.

I'm a true RPG junkie, so when I encountered this game I was immediately filled with expectations, and most of them were met. So let me tell you about Cristal Story, where you control a joyful party of four on their adventure the defeat the not-so-malevolous witch.  

I'll start off with the presentation of the game - designed with a very familiar anime style for most of us, the game is easy on the eyes, with engaging character and enemy design. Even the menus are slick and well constructed,  and as you will be spending some time on them it's a very welcomed feature. The only fault that bothered me on the design were the animations, which are all very clunky and awkward, specially the spells, but considering this is a one man job, I say they are still pretty good.

As for the gameplay, you'll be dividing your time mainly between the city and the "Evil Cave", where the witch has hidden on some evil quest of her own. The city itself is where you can access the shop, the inn and the tavern, besides the obvious menu and dungeon. The Evil Cave is divided by levels, totaling 25 floors for the main story, and a few more far harder if you want to continue playing. These floors are all randomly generated (very nice), filled with monsters and treasure, and to help your adventuring, every couple of floors you will find a town teleporter, that will allow you to access that floor from the city, saving you aimless running around in the dungeon. There are a load of features I could tell you from the dungeon, but I think you will find it more pleasuring to discover them yourself. Now onto the main part of any RPG game, the battle.

The city, the view, the menu.

If you are a RPG fan, you will be instantly at home with the battle system, if not, don't worry, it is very simple to get into, and offers enough depth to make you think a little. It's a by-the-book turn-based RPG, where your characters and enemies alter action turns, making this a more strategic battle setup than of an action RPG. What makes this game stand out here tough is the customizing system implemented for your characters. Each has a talent tree with three different pathways, each representing a different class if you will, where you can spend points earned by leveling up or doing side quests.

Skill trees, offering customization for your party.

Still on the customization options on Cristal Story, there also is (obviously) the equipment. Each character, being that they can be specialized in a class of your choice, will be focusing on different kinds of equipment, ranging from the all attack fighter to the fragile mage. You can either buy equipment, or earn it while adventuring, but either way, you'll want to visit the shop to level up your equipment and make it better (yes, your equipment can also be leveled up, a very nice feature).

On top of this all, the game also offers side-quests, a pseudo-pet slime that you can feed and be given items in return, and a mini-game resembling Bejeweled, which also rewards you with items, according to the difficulty you are playing it on.

All-in-all, despite some gameplay repetition and the clumsy animations, Cristal Story is pretty good, and used up some hours of my day, well spent hours by the way. I have no other choice but to recommend you this game, so go ahead and try it! Also, be sure to check Emmanuel's site, linked above, for some nice content on the building of the game.

Game rating: 8.5/10


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