Quick Game Review – Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a Darklord

“I sentence you to trampling by behemoth!”

Gotta be one of the greatest lines ever.

Welcome to the dark side, friends, as I guide you through what it REALLY means to be a darklord. Hellbent on world destruction, you must step into the shoes of Mira, a half-demon, half-clavat, insanely satisfying overlord to take on the entire civilized world.

Now, according to civilized fiction, the good guy always wins in the end. And while noone knows what may be, you’re sure as hell going to try and get in their way. You are the princess of a floating fortress of evil, which plants itself in various places, challenging adventurers to try to make their way to the top. The prize for any that do is the dark crystal which holds your father’s soul.

Not that you really care… after all, in your opinion, your father’s a coward.

Gameplay wise, the game play is actually really entertaining. It’s not overly complex to the point of you have to devote a fresh mind to it; you can definitely relax playing this game. Yet, it’s not excessively mundane to the point of boredom. I’ve already spent hours on this game and I just got it yesterday. In each stage, you must add floors to your tower. These floors usually come with some sort of trap or other aid to your villains. Examples include an Evil Puppet Show which reduces the strength of adventurers caught by it, and a Poison Harp which fires poisonous arrows at them. Also, each room has a certain number of slots. These slots determine what monsters can populate the room. Some of the larger monsters can take up multiple slots.

Speaking of the monsters, Square-Enix definitely didn’t care to hide their easter eggs. With some downloadable content, from the very beginning, you can select from Palom and Kain from FFIV: The After Years (you can also put on costumes resembling Rydia and Porom from the same game). These come alongside other Final Fantasy classics such as Ahrimen, Cactuars, and Bombs.

The combat is also fairly simple. Adventurers and Monsters both come in 5 types. Generic characters deal the same amount of damage to any other character. Healers never attack; they only heal, whether it be themselves, other characters, or even the traps in your rooms. The other three types are Melee, Ranged, and Magic, and they work in a rock-paper-scissors fashion. Melee beats Ranged beats Magic beats Melee. This is where strategy plays a key part. Before starting each mission, you can see in the bottom right corner how many adventurers of each type will come through that stage. This allows you to plan accordingly.

Trust me, you may get away with flying by the seat of your pants early on, but it pays to plan in the later stages.

Overall, MLAAD is a fun, exciting, yet calm gaming experience. And for the price, it can’t be beat. Square-Enix definitely did themselves a favor with this one.

Sound: 4/5 – Another classic FF Soundtrack. The alert sound is a bit annoying though.
Graphics: 4/5 – While not on par with the likes of Lost Winds or Icarian (NyxQuest?), still worthy of a Wiiware title.
Gameplay: 4.5/5 – While not necessarily for the hardcore gamer, it is an involving but calm experience.
Story: 3.8/5 – Everyone enjoys a psychotic girl hellbent on world destruction, but it could’ve gotten a bit more time in the scripting department.
Length: 3.6/5 – Not long by any means, but more than good enough as a Wiiware title.

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~ by chadanthony07 on July 31, 2009.

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