Review: Suikoden Tierkreis
We all know the DS has a ton of great RPG's to play. Suikoden Tierkreis is one of the new entries into the great RPG's on the DS. I dare say that it's in my favorite RPG this year on a handheld device. The story revolves around your character (in game you are referred to as him regardless of what you name your character) Running into some soldiers trying to take over your town. You fend them off and start to find out who they really are, The Order. The Order believes in the One True Way in which that everything in life has already been determined and you cannot change it. They want people to worship the One King and follow a predetermined path for the rest of their lives. Well our hero and his friends don't like that idea so they set forth to stop The Order and the One King. There are books called The False Chronicles you come across that grants certain people with the Mark Of The Stars. This unlocks what essentially is magic in the game. You soon realize that The Order is trying to collect them all to use to summon the One King to their world and you have to beat them to it. The story progresses easily and flows well enough to keep you engaged for the 30+ hours you will be playing the main story. The voice acting is terrible but still doesn't get in the way of the story itself.
The graphics are very lush and easy on the eyes. I was amazed at the detail this game has. One of the best looking games on the DS in awhile. The soundtrack is ok but the music at the Castle/Fortress is kinda annoying unless you like Irish music.
The gameplay mechanics are pretty good overall. Moving around in areas are smooth and its not hard to get around finding where you need to go. The game has an overworld map that makes it easy to travel to other places once you have been there at least once. Menu systems are a little clunky and hard to navigate. Also, the way it handles weapons/armor when buying it sucks. It's hard to tell if it boosts or lowers your stats. You basically have to remember what your stats are and see if the number is higher in the item you are trying to replace. Battling is your typical turn based style system in any basic RPG.
I didn't find the game too challenging until the last part of the game which is a shame but the story is good enough for you to forget that and have fun throughout. The big thing about Suikoden games is that you can recruit 108 people on your team. This game has a cool way of finding the ones that you don't find automatically in the main storyline. There are jobs that you can do throughout the game that can earn you money and sometimes special items. These jobs also unlock characters to add to your party. Some are easy to figure out, others are next to impossible without some sort of guide. The game makes you level up most of your characters by forcing you to make 2 or 3 parties of 4 characters in certain parts of the game. I like that for the reason being that you don't just level up 4 guys and leave the rest to get drunk at the bar alone and sad. Getting some of the more powerful characters through the job system would help you out a lot with this but is not necessary.
This game has enough detail, depth, and story to keep you engaged for the 30+ hours it will take you to complete the game. If you are looking for a RPG to have tons of fun with, pick Suikoden Tierkreis up now. You owe it to yourself to play a wonderful RPG this year on the DS.