Defenders of Oasis
Reviewed by Inkhands
Defenders of Oasis is a rather typical RPG. It uses the same
systems as most other RPG's in terms of hit points, magic
points, experience points, and money. You buy weapons, buy
items, and learn magic spells. The storyline is rather vague
and the backstory is a bit pointless. At some points the
game is involving and others it is very frustrating.
The backstory is that centuries ago an evil man named
Ahriman rose up to destroy the world. A young warrior used
three rings given to him by a wizard and destroyed Ahriman.
This young warrior went off to found the town of Shanadar,
but was then killed by an ally of Ahriman, named Zahhark.
Zahhark was then killed by a young man named Fallidoon.
Centuries pass and everyone has forgotten all of these
events. Then the town of Shanadar is under attack again and
that's where this story begins. I didn't give anything away
there, because all of that is found in the introduction of
the game, before you get to the title screen.
The main character in this game is a Prince. He's never
given a name other than Prince. Basically, he is the Prince
of Shanadar. He has to save the kingdom, the world, and the
Princess of Mahamood, who just happened to be visiting
Shanadar at the time of the attack. The story advances and
plot twists take place, mostly of the variety of people and
things being stolen. You begin as only a one character
party, but will progress to having four in the party at one
The Prince acquires a Genie and meets a ship captain's son
named Saleem along the way. Saleem advances in levels very
quickly and becomes a strong fighter. Also, his special
attack, which is called Dance, allows him to attack every
enemy on screen in one turn. The Genie isn't much in terms
of fighting. His levels do not advance based on Experience
Points. Instead you have to find or buy items, such as
platings, silk, and crystals, to make him more powerful.
Mostly the Genie is a helpful character, because he is the
only one that can use Magic. He can heal up the characters
and you won't have to be concerned with running out of
herbs. His other spells can be used as attacks and also to
teleport from one area to another. Since the Genie doesn't
move up based on his experience points, he has to learn
spells another way.
The game is divided into five chapters, all of which can be
quite lengthy. The setting is that of an Arabian desert. All
of the characters have that look, because they mostly wander
around wearing turbans and capes. Each chapter usually
requires you to do a certain amount of raising your levels.
Each chapter also usually requires you to complete a certain
task, while wandering around in tunnels and mazes. You
usually will not have more than two enemies on screen at any
given time. Occasionally, a main battle will force you to
fight three at once. Your enemies vary from soldiers to a
cyclops. You earn experience points and money, called
dinars, after defeating these enemies. You can try to run.
Sometimes you are successful, but other times it tells you
that you tried to escape, but stumbled over a stone instead.
Usually, building levels is a very tedious process for me.
However, in this game it wasn't much of a problem. The
levels usually move up rather quickly, due to the high
amount of experience points you earn per battle and the low
amount of experience points need to level up. In fact, the
players all increase their attributes, such as will and
stamina, rather quickly. Also, total Hit Points usually
advance around 10 or 12 points at every level. This makes
you very strong very quickly.
The battle system is turn based and really is quite
standard. You have the options of attacking, defending, or
using an item. The Prince is the only one that can select
the Run option, Saleem is the only one with the Dance
attack, and the Genie can only use Magic. The battles are
rather easy, due to the frequent level ups, and the fact
that usually it's your three or four character party against
only two enemies.
Control is not a problem in this game. It's simply a matter
of walking around on the World Map and clicking through
menus during battles and to check your status. Purchasing
items and weapons from shops is easy, as is equipping them.
There is no text that will tell you what an item, weapon, or
spell is for, however. This can be somewhat of a problem if
you want to know the effect of what you are about to buy or
use. It is also a problem, due to the name of the spells.
The spells are given exotic names, to fit in with the
Arabian theme. Your spell to heal isn't given the usual Cure
name, but instead it is named Alma. The other spells have
names such as Skanda and Varyu. With no text accompanying
the spell, you really don't know what you are about to use,
before you use it.
The challenge in this game is rather low for a few reasons.
I mentioned above that you become very powerful, very
quickly. There is also the fact that nothing about the game
is complicated. At most it's frustrating because you will
know what you have to do, but because of problems with the
game, you can't do it. This is a game that is hurt somewhat
by unclear graphics.
The feature that makes this game very easy is the save
feature. Any time you die, it will save and you can start
exactly where you left off. If you lose a battle just
outside of a weapon shop, you will begin the game again at
that exact same spot outside of the weapon shop. Only, you
won't have to deal with the battle, and your hit points have
been restored to what it was before you entered the battle
the first time. Also, you can turn the game off at any
point, and it will save your exact position. You will turn
the game on and find yourself standing in the exact same
position you turned it off on. You don't have to manually
save anything in this game, it does it all for you. The only
real challenge comes from the length of some of the
chapters. This may be a game for a small system, but it is
actually a fairly long game.
The music fits in with the Arabian setting. If you have ever
seen Aladdin, or any other movie or cartoon set in the
desert, you have heard this game. For example, have you ever
seen a cartoon or anything with the man drawing a snake out
of a pot by playing music? That's the type of music this
game has. If you still do not what I mean, just imagine
something a gypsy might dance to. If you still don't, then I
have no idea what to say. There are a few different songs in
the game, all with the same Arabian theme. Most of it is
sounds average, but it does fit in with the game fairly
The graphics also have that Arabian look. Not only do your
characters wears turbans and capes, as mentioned above, but
the settings fit the mood as well. You have deserts, with an
occasional palm tree. There are temples and castles that
look rather ancient. The people you talk to in towns also
fit in with the setting of the game. You ride around on a
ship and travel through tunnels. The characters look rather
small and undetailed. The Genie is large, with a mustache,
and is a typical looking Genie.
Inside the castles is colored glass that match up quite well
with the rest of the game. The buildings in town have no
roofs on them, however. You simply walk into one and talk to
the person inside and walk out. No doors, no roofs, and it
keeps everything in an overhead view. One problem with the
graphics is the lack of detail and it led to me having
problem seeing where I was supposed to go. I spent a lot of
time wandering around, because I couldn't see an opening,
that should have been clearly there. A hallway was there,
but it looked more like a wall.
Role playing games tend to have low replay value and this
one is no exception. There are no side quests and you
probably won't miss much of anything the first time through.
The story isn't very unique and it shouldn't keep you too
interested. It's mostly standard save the world type of
storyline. There is no character development, because the
characters usually do not speak. You are only spoken to in
this game, and all of those characters are very one
dimensional. Between chapters you see some story sequences.
They are usually nice looking, but don't do much in terms of
advancing the actual storyline. You see a little of what is
going on away from the action and your characters, but it's
rather uninteresting and typical evil characters plotting to
do evil things.
Basically, this isn't a unique game. It's rather easy, but
it is a somewhat long game. The replay value is very low in
this game. The graphics and sound are both rather average.
All of the elements of an average RPG are found in this
game, with little that makes it stand apart from the rest.
The only real appeal this game has is the setting. The
Arabian setting does a lot for the game, as does the
addition of the Genie, but it mostly makes it feel like an
Aladdin retread. However, the exotic setting might keep you
interested more than the weak plot. Overall, this game is
good enough to play through once, but it's mostly a take it
or leave it type of game. You can miss this game and you
really won't be missing anything too interesting.
Graphics - 5/10
Sound - 6/10
Control - 6/10
Challenge - 5/10
Appeal - 6/10
Story - 5/10
Game Play - 7/10
Replay Value - 3/10
Overall - 6/10