The Granstream Saga

THQ aims to appease eager Playstation action RPG fans.

   The Granstream Saga offers everything an action RPG fan could want ... except faces. So maybe it's not that big a deal to most of you - but the heart of an RPG is its story, right? And the story is expressed through the dialogue, emotion, and reactiosn of the characters, right? Well if your characters don't have any faces, how can they express emotion? Through text boxes explaining what's going on, sigh.

   But don't let this turn you off from Granstream Saga. The game has many positive points to recommend it. Such as the anime, which is done by the same company which produced Ghost in the Shell and Xenogears' anime scenes. The introduction, ending, and many intermediate cut-scenes are all well-animated and adequately dubbed. Another plus is the length: THQ estimates that the game will take an experienced RPGer playing as quickly as possible upwards of 30 or 40 hours to complete. First-time action RPG players may take as many as 90 hours. (But haven't we heard this before?) Enemy AI is also superb. You only fight one enemy at a time, unlike the several that can swarm you in most action RPGs. Each type of enemy, however, has many attacks he will mix and match to defeat you. "Run in, slash hard, run out," will only get you so far in the game.]

   Graphics and animation are uninspiring, but adequate. A host of magical spells and options aid you in your quest. While Granstream Saga does nothing particularly extraordinarily, it does many things well, and is the first fully polygonal RPG for the Playstation. Action RPG fans should check it out. The Granstream Saga will be released for Playstation in June 1998.

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