|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Banpresto||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Atlus||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: June 3, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
All these customizable options add a good deal of strategy to the game, not only in terms of equipping your characters, but also on the battlefield. Using the most basic attacks all the time isn't going to get you very far, so you've got to be pretty smart about which skills to use and how to use them. You can also manage what your allies do, and instructing them properly is important for victory. That said, this game is pretty easy, so even though you're encouraged to play creatively and be smart with your tactics, I suppose you never really have to. But what fun is that, right?
Despite possessing a pretty fun gameplay system, Summon Night: Twin Age does have a few little hiccups along the way. For starters, there's the fact that battles can get really hectic. This is a good thing in many respects, but what's annoying is oftentimes it's hard to target the right person. For example, with support spells, it's easy to accidentally hit a monster instead of your ally -- needless to say, this can be pretty annoying. The same goes for attack spells: it's really frustrating to hit your ally instead of a monster just because everyone was so bunched up. Another problem is that of the A.I. -- specifically, your allies' A.I. It tends to be poor a lot of times; rather than helping out with the battle, they'll go curl up in a corner and get beat up by monsters. The A.I. navigation also isn't great, and it's not uncommon to see your allies or monsters get stuck trying to go around a corner. Still, these are relatively minor problems in comparison with the really fun gameplay Twin Age has to offer.
Graphically, Twin Age looks fine. It's nothing groundbreaking for the system, but the visuals do look nice. The character models are neat, though conversations take place in 2D. Enemies look nice, as do your own characters (boss battles may very well be the visual high-point of this game; they're really big and look very cool). The same goes for the music; it's nothing all that memorable, but it's kind of catchy (if repetitive). Either way, the game certainly doesn't suffer because of the quality of its visuals and sounds.
After many of the dungeon hacks we've seen on the DS, I was pleasantly surprised with Summon Night: Twin Age. If you like the original games, you should definitely check this one out (although it's worth noting the plot of this game is not directly connected to that of the originals). Moreover, if you're looking for a fun, rewarding (albeit familiar) game, then Twin Age is one to check out. It's nothing revolutionary, but it sure is fun.
CCC Freelance Writer