Sunday, March 22, 2009

Games Played 03/19/2009

Phantasy Star Universe - X-Box 360
Radiata Stories - PlayStation 2
Shadow Hearts - PlayStation 2
Super Stardust HD - PlayStation 3


Shadow Hearts (2001)
Developer: Sacnoth
Platform: PlayStation 2
Purchase Date: 12/28/2001

Roger Bacon is not your typical role playing game villain.

A "M" rated Japanese role playing game? Now that's something you don't see very often. This rating is surely caused by the game's copious amount of blood and sexual situations. Shadow Hearts is a highly underrated, highly imaginative RPG based on the events surrounding World War I. The main character, Yuri Hyuga, is forced by a voice in his head to save a young woman from the military and supernatural forces that are out to get her. The semi-historical approach of combining altered facts with demonic mythologies resulted in a refreshing tale filled with outlandish and memorable characters/events. Though the structure of moving from one town to the next is what you would normally expect from the genre, it is exciting for once to see the realistic Chinese and European locations that are presented in the game. Shadow Hearts is notable for its inclusion of a playable homosexual character. The game is so bold that you get to see that character hitting on Yuri persistently during the course of the adventure. Battle wise, Shadow Hearts introduces the "Judgment Ring" system where actions selected are followed by a circle with marks inside of it. The player must input the button presses when a rotating indicator hits the appropriately marked spots within the circle to activate said actions. This feature is implemented flawlessly into the game, ensuring the player's constant interaction and participation during the battles.


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