that RPGs don't have to be as difficult to grasp as
quantum physics, Arc the Lad: Twilight of the Spirits
is a refreshing game that is straightforward, easy
to follow and most importantly, it's fun.
simplicity of the game stems from its focus which
seldom wavers from the connecting rod of the storyline.
There's not much in the way of side quests or sub
plots which as we all know can end up as nothing more
than a make-work project for some games. It's a fairly
linear game but it really has lots of dimension in
the areas that it does choose to highlight, most notably
in the areas of personal development. The main characters
wrestle with several philosophical issues. This is
an all-new tale and it takes place a thousand years
in the future from the events of the last game. Don't
expect any of the same characters although some might
make a special appearance if you wish hard enough.
and Darc are twin brothers and are heirs to the kingdom
inhabited by humans. The world is divided between
the humans and a monster race known as Deinos. The
tension between the two factions is high and they're
always on the verge of a full-blown war. The balance
is further upset by Kharg who has a passion for battle
that is fueled by his ignorance and paranoia. Darc
is more reflective and although he's more sensitive
and emotional, he is mindful not be guided by such
forces. He gets involved in a love triangle which
has serious implications on the development of the
starts out kind of slow soon builds to a soap opera
of epic proportions. You will get to play as both
brothers and they will eventually meet up later in
the game. If the twisted plot is not enough to hold
your interest then the battle system surely will.
It's a blend of real-time and turn-based moves that
allows you the freedom to move around and get into
position before launching an attack. War style tactics
can be used such as rear flanking or frontal attacks.
When the animation begins, it's a thing of beauty.
of the Twilight uses spirit stones to access magic.
It's not unlimited magic, you must have a required
amount of stones to use certain spells but only until
that spell runs out. The spirit stones can be awarded
in battle or purchased in shops. It keeps you from
relying too heavily on magic which can be a crutch.
Collecting the stones may be a bit of a pain but the
weapons are pretty darn effective and you won't find
yourself at a serious disadvantage if you don't use
magic all the time. The particle effects are gorgeous
when a spell is used and that alone may cause you
to seek more stones.
old-world ambience reminiscent of Europe during the
Renaissance is created here with cobblestone streets,
windmills and quaint dwellings. The character models
look a bit on the wobbly side as they undulate about
as though they are in the process of melting. The
body language is over the top with hand gestures that
make them appear as though they're trying to fly.
The voiceacting is handled in a much more subtle manner.
Melodies seem to weave in and out of one's consciousness
as the music simply directs one attention to the situation
and not overpower it. Sound effects are about as good
as they can get; I can't find anything to complain
about in that department despite my attempts.
With such a cornucopia of RPGs available this year,
Spirit of the Twilight may not be a contender for
game of the year. If you're looking for a game that's
just a bit more cerebral than the typical action adventure
style of RPGs that are popular now, then you won't
be disappointed with this purchase.