|System: X360||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Tri-Crescendo||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Namco Bandai||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sept. 17, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-3||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Amanda L. Kondolojy
July 17, 2007 - I have to say one of my favorite composers of all time is Chopin (pronounced Sho-PAIN). If you haven't heard of him, I suggest you perform a Google search immediately. Most of his work is free to download, and you owe it to yourself to check him out. He is one of the best pianists of the romantic period, and his work is just amazing. Up there with Rachmaninoff, in my opinion. Now, you may be wondering why all this talk about classical music, especially when you clicked on a game preview.
Well, that's the exciting part. You see, Eternal Sonata, the new game for the Xbox 360 coming this fall, is going to take place in a fantastical world, with, you guessed it, my main man Chopin! Sure it sounds a little weird, but the RPG genre sorta lends itself to the imaginative and the whimsical.
And you can definitely count on some imaginative and whimsical content from Eternal Sonata. You'll be playing in an alternate universe, where victims of terminal diseases wage war against the darkness within their own bodies. Chopin discovers this world through a dream he has prior to his death. He meets young Polka, who is struggling alongside her boyfriend Alegretto to fight the darkness. Sounds like a dead ringer for the drama, excitement, and even tragedy that only the RPG genre can deliver. But from the looks of it, you may need some Kleenex for this one. Just fair warning.
Visually, this game looks like it's going to be awesome. The characters have that anime-stylized cel shaded look that seems to be the trend coming out of Japan these days. And I must say I am duly impressed by both the art itself and its flawless presentation in the trailer. These clearly 2D stylized images are brought to life in vivid 3D, and it's just amazing to see. If you haven't seen the trailer yet, I strongly encourage you to download it from Xbox Live, because it is something to behold. Trust me on this.
Of course, a no-brainer for this one is going to be the music. Because it's based (very loosely, of course) on the final hours of composer Chopin's life, you can bet there will be a lot of Chopin's music featured in the game. However, in addition to this built in score, there will also be a rather extensive additional score by Japanese composer Motoi Sakuraba who is most famous for his score on Tales of Phantasia and Baiten Kaitos (and who is also scoring the upcoming Super Smash Brothers Brawl). So, no worries here about whether or not the music will be quality.
Your battle system will be mainly utilizing the dark/light dynamic to it's full advantage by featuring different monsters and creatures that transform into different shapes with different stats depending on where they are. The dark and light will also affect character stats and abilities. And although most of the gameplay will be turn-based, there will be some action-based active gameplay elements as well.
So, here's one more to add to the list of anticipated RPGs for the Xbox 360. Although it might not promise the intensity of Blue Dragon or Mass Effect, and these comparisons are inevitable, Eternal Sonata looks like it's going to bring a together a lively story with some solid graphics and gameplay. And what more could you ask for in a game? Plus, it's probably going to have the best score of the year, so definitely take a look and a listen to Eternal Sonata on the Xbox 360 this fall!
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Freelance Writer