I Am Setsuna Review - A Nostalgia Trip
I Am Setsuna has a sad but joyous experience fully packed with beautiful characters, elegant adventure and awesome gameplay experience. But it lacks replay-ability and some hard to ignore faults. Overall I Am Setsuna got a memorable story with nostalgic adventure.
I Am Setsuna Review
The further I got into I Am Setsuna’s deep magic & skill systems the more it felt like a unique game. And the further I experience I Am Setsuna the less it feels like a shamelessly aping of classic 90s JRPG such as Final Fantasy 6 and Chrono Trigger.
The more I know about its cast of interesting characters all of who have secrets to discover the less I was bothered by the balance issues that came dangerously close to trivializing its otherwise enjoyable combat. Ultimately I Am Setsuna pulls through on a strength of its real tone and well-told story.
I Am Setsuna Review:
I Am Setsuna is a classic JRPG story rich video game that has unique and new battle system inspired from Chrono Tiger, stunning graphics and beautiful character design. I Am Setsuna’s greatest plus point by far is its steadfast commitment to a somber tone the game establishes right from the beginning.
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It’s a tragic story of fractured world that is filled with people who futilely struggle against the rising tide of a danger and nearly all the creative choices properly reflect this. The magnificent and melancholic all-piano soundtrack, the ferocious emptiness of over-world and the muted colors all work in a balanced service to themes of regret, hope and sacrifice in the face of unending and cyclical conflict.
The other edge of this sword is a kind of monotony that draw away ever so slightly from a general sense of adventure. The over-world is just a continuous expanse of the snowy fields with little to do and its dotted broken towns made up of mere handful of homes that look like all are furnished out of a same catalog. It works for what the game is but I sadly never felt the sense of anticipation over what might be waiting at the next cave entrance because I already knew.
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I Am Setsuna make up for this lack of variety with its magic and skill systems that provide different options for party customization. Every character has their own unique active skills and passive skills can easily be assigned to anyone. But you’ve limited number of slots for abilities to work with.
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Each skill can be modified by slotting them in talismans that adds various effects and stats boosts over time as you use them more often. I had really a great time finding out new and different crafty combinations of various party members & abilities to annihilate various groups of enemies with.
But it let me little too much power too easily though, from a very early point in the game, I was able to identify different skills that let me conclude entire encounters with just one-shot with little tweaking. By sticking to these kind of strategies, I was able to blow through the game in around 19 hours. I Just died once or twice on a specifically very tough boss in the game.
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Instead of balancing out these abilities this unique system that changes item drops based on type of attacks you use to defeat an enemy to give you an incentive to use other less expedient strategies and tactics. The turn based battles are far more interested when played with that mind but this doesn’t change the fact even in the final areas. I felt like I was on a farming run. This robbed combat of much of its fun but it didn’t dampen the emotional impact of I Am Setsuna’s genuine message.