After years of wanting a game many had hailed as the best RPG ever I finally was able to get my hands on it. All I can say is… WOW!!! The entire Suikoden series is probably the best series of RPGs I’ve ever had the chance to play. The coolest thing I found about this game was that you weren’t saving the world. It was a refreshing change and a good one I found. Instead of fighting an evil monster you are fighting an evil empire, not an empire that is destroying the world though. Well, I could ramble on about what separates this game from the rest as far as storywise, but I’ll just jump in and tell you about everything else.

First off, as I implied earlier, the storyline is awesome. You’ll find yourself very involved in the story and what it has to offer. Though the game is only 20 hours or so, which makes the story a quickie, you will find that all that happened in the story rivals that of a game like Xenogears. The difference? The cutscenes are a lot shorter and straightforward. This doesn’t deter the storyline at all though.

Along with the well-written storyline you will find lots of characters, 108 to be exact. Now some of you may be asking “How can you have character development.” Well in all reality there isn’t much character development for some characters, however many of the characters receive a massive amount of development. Along with 108 characters comes the difficulty of getting many of them. Though many join automatically, there are good amounts, which don’t join automatically and require you to perform special tasks to have them join.

Now, comes the difficulty of using all the characters in battle. There are three different styles of battle. The first one, and one you’ll use the most, is the basic battle. Well, almost basic battle. You are allowed to have six characters in your party at a time, and all these characters attack at the same time. For instance, you could have someone cast a fire spell, someone fire some arrows, and everyone else attack with swords; and it all happens at the same time.

The second form of battle is the one on one battles. These are pretty fun and in full 3D. There aren’t many of them, but these duels are a nice change from the six-man battles you usually stage.

Now it’s onto my favorite kind of battle… EVER!!! Army vs. Army. For every character that joins your army you get a few hundred more people in your army and more options in the battle. There aren’t many battles like this, and the whole system could use some tweaking. However, it doesn’t detract that much and I’m sure you’ll find oodles of enjoyment in these battles.

Accompanying the story is a beautifully orchestrated soundtrack that carries emotion in each song. Some songs are the clichéd cheerful songs. Others are the fast-paced adrenaline rush themes. However, Suikoden seems to add something to these everyday songs that makes them completely different from the rest. It’s tough to describe, but anyway the soundtrack to this game is awesome.

My only complaint with the game is that in the beginning it doesn’t grab with you a action. Instead it gives you a feeling of adventure instead of heroism. Though if you can stick with it for an hour you’ll find yourself to be engulfed and swept away by the adventure aspect that the game has to offer. In closing, I’m going to say this. Try as hard as you can to find this game. It is a rare game that we don’t see often. A game that is completely different from all the rest. The Suikoden series are diamonds in the rough, and this game began the legacy that has already been through three installments and looks to surely be through some more. If you can find this game… Enjoy!

Story: 10
Characters: 9
Music: 10
Graphics: 8
Gameplay: 10
Replay Value: 10
Reviewer’s Tilt: 10

Overall: 10

This game, as probably previously mentioned, is a game you should have in your library. Not too many games receive a rating of 10, sometimes due to just one area of the game lacking. Thus a 10 means most aspects are truly amazing and a few are almost that good.

RingMasterFrodo's Reviews
Suikoden Reviews

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