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Secret of Evermore

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Reviewed by Tim Secret of Evermore is about a boy and his dog who accidentally stumble into the world of Evermore, a brilliant scientist's attempt at utopia. But something has gone wrong and now the professor and his colleges are trapped. It's up to the boy and his dog to set right what went wrong 30 years ago. Though this game isn't a sequel to the Secret of Mana, it follows in it's footsteps and introduces the alchemy system as opposed to the MP system.

Graphics B+

There's nothing really spectacular about the graphics but it's a great improvement over the Secret of Mana. Images are sharp, clear and easy to distinguish. Icons are also easy to recognize. There isn't really anything "wrong" with the graphics other than that the environments can get repetitive after being in a region for too long.

Music and Sound B

The music rarely gets annoying but often it's not really music but just the sounds you'd here in the area. (wind in the dessert, talking in the market) It is very realistic but over time it can get boring if there's too much of it. I haven't played all the way through yet but so far I haven't found a tune I found particularly catchy. The music isn't the best but it doesn't at all lessen the fun of it.

Game Challenge A

The challenge of the this game is a great improvement over the Secret of Mana. One major reason is because you can't hit bosses over and over with spells so they can't attack like you could in Mana. (Yes I'm guilty.) What's even better is that most bosses don't rely on magic much either, which makes fights a lot more interesting. Like the Secret of Mana, you can't lose against the first boss which gives you a chance to practice. The game gives you plenty of time to get the feel for it. The challenge may not be enough for an expert but it's great for a beginning to average player.

Game Play-Fun A

This is very fun to play and it probably won't leave you wanting more. The requirement of letting your weapons power back up after hitting takes a little getting used to but it shouldn't be a problem. The story line has many plot twists which help keep you playing and the ending is anything but predictable. One good touch was the fact that you almost always get a different message if you talk to people as the dog instead of the boy. The game has a few annoying features but as a whole it's very fun to play.

Frustration

The game really has only three annoying things about it. 1. A lot of level, weapon, and magic building is often required which can get very tedious. 2. Some may disagree with me, but I don't find most alchemy formulas very useful. You have to use them a lot to power them up which wouldn't be a problem if they used MP's that recharged when you sleep at an inn. Instead, they require ingredients you must buy or find. It's an interesting idea but it makes building them up expensive as well as tedious. Personally, I only find healing and self-enhancement spells useful. The call beads are a different story but they're hard to find so you can't use them as much as you'd like to. 3. The boy's constant references to movies he's seen get's old fast and it's not as funny as it tries to be.

Replayability B

Even though it isn't much different the second time around, it's fun enough to play that it may be worth a second or third go at it. There are many secrets to uncover but no big side quests. Still it worth playing again.

Game Value A-

This game is worth buying for most RPG fans and definitely if you loved the Secret of Mana. Experts may want more so it's not for everybody. If you don't like RPG's, this game might help change your mind since it's also part adventure because of it's lack of menu controlled battles.

Overall A-

This game is very fun and has some interesting features. If you like The Secret of Mana, this game's definitely worth trying. It's length is the only thing inferior to the Secret of Mana. But if you wanted more out of the battles in Mana, you'll find it here.

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