Magic Knight Rayearth - Preview

Will the last domestic Saturn game ever be worth the wait?

By an RPGamer Writer

Anime cut-scenes add to the story

   Magic Knight Rayearth was originally due to be released in the United States in August of 1996. Now, almost two years later, it's about to see the light of day. Even for Working Designs, a company famous for their delays, this is a particularly long time. WD and the Japanese publisher fought a long series of battles over many areas of the game, most notably the names of the main characters. WD wanted the original Japanese names, while the Japanese publisher wanted the Americanized names of the television series - a series so poorly received it never even aired in the U.S. WD stuck to their guns and finally won. So the question gamers have is: how does the game look nearly two years after its original planned release date?

   Not bad at all, surprisingly. The anime cut-scenes and voice acting are still impressive, and the graphics, while 2-D, are layered,
Run around and bop stuff
complex, and vibrant. In the past two years the manga has gained many more U.S. fans - and even some limited U.S. distribution. Most importantly, the storyline is still exciting and fresh, with Working Designs' trademark quality writing shining throughout.

   Gameplay is your typical action RPG, with the twist that each of the three girls has special powers that only she can use. You can switch between the three of them on-the-fly, however, to make navigating obstacles and solving puzzles less aggravating. While it's been a long time coming, Magic Knight Rayearth looks like it may prove to be a fitting swan song for Sega's late machine.

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