Arc Rise Fantasia

Posted by staff | Posted in Role Playing | Posted on 09-09-2010

5

  • From the developers who created the highly lauded Luminous Arc
  • Combines high quality 3D graphics and modern gameplay
  • Classic Japanese high fantasy role-playing
  • Music by legendary composer Yasunori Mutsuda
  • Over 20 hours of gameplay

Product Description
Arc Rise Fantasia is a new turn-based RPG with a beautiful, anime-inspired Japanese art style. Players will jump into the shoes of L’Arc, a calm and composed mercenary, who sets out to defend the Meridian Empire from an impending invasion of ferocious creatures. After assembling a party of friends, each with a unique set of abilities, players will embark on a perilous journey across an overworld filled with deadly enemies and treacherous dungeons. While strategi… More >>

Arc Rise Fantasia

Comments posted (5)

This game is amazing. The graphics are a sight to see and pleasant to the eyes. The characters all stand out and aren’t horrible to look at. For those of you who like anime, the artist/studio is the infamous Bones. One of their animes? Eureka Seven. See the resemblance?

Anyways, here’s my Pros and Cons

Pros:

The graphics are amazing.

The music was done by the famous Yasunori Mitsuda (he did the Xenosaga series, Shadow Hearts series, and the Chrono series), and is pleasant to the ears and gets good when in a battle and when some dramatic scene is played.

The controls are simple and can be used with the Wii Remote w/ Nunchuk, Classic Controller, and GameCube Controller.

The battle is interesting as there’s an AP system, which is a lot like Skies of Arcadia, and can be diverse throughout the party.

The overworld is a lot like the Tales Of Games and is vibrant.

Many things to do, like upgrading weapons during battle and then using transferring the power from the weapon to another.

The magic system is like the ORIGINAL Final Fantasy, where you use a point system (which is your MP) and can upgrade it in shops

They have on-screen monsters, so no random battles (though I’m used to that due to Final Fantasy)

Cons:

It’s slow in the beginning and the battle system is a little hard to get use to, but is way easier than you think.

I haven’t played the game far enough to get the cons, but I’m sure there are some that can be obvious.

The voices………..THE VOICES!!!!!!!!!

The biggest drawback in this game is the voices. About 90-99% of you reading this will agree on the voices. They are horrendous. In fact, this is some of the worse voice acting I’ve ever heard….EVER!!!! L’Arc is below average (He could have been voiced by Johnny Young Bosch and it’ll be better). Alf’s voice is wayyyyy too deep, like he chained smoked before he came into the game (his voice acting though is better than some of the other characters). This new guy I met, Niko, sounds like he has a horrible cold and has a sinus problem, and the worse of them all……..the main girl, Ryfia. She is literally THE worst voice in the game. She was voiced by Yui Makino. For those of you who don’t know her, she has a very cute voice and fits extremely well with Ryfia. But seriously, her English voice actor!?!?!? Monotonous, sounds too old for a 16 year old character (sounds like a 25 year old), doesn’t fit her character, her fighting voice is crap….I can go on and on about her and you’ll believe everything I just said.

Anyways, this game is good. No joke. The battles, story, graphics, and controls are awesome and isn’t something to be shunned about. Seriously, if you can get past the voices (seriously, the old Speed Racer cartoon sounded better than this), you’re in for a good game.

4/5 stars. -1 because of the voices.
Rating: 4 / 5

Pros:

- Great graphics.

- Great music/sounds.

- Interesting storyline.

- Creative Battle system.

Cons:

- Terrible voice acting.

Arc Rise is a great game but has a terrible drawback that could ruin your experience playing it. The game has great graphics, though the camera can get clunky. The music and sound is great. The storyline is interesting though it’s slow on the uptake but once it picks up it gets you really engaging. And finally it’s the battle system that is interesting.

Battle is turned base. You start with a pool of AP (depending on how many characters are in your party) and you assign all actions at the very start of your turn. Once you end your turn all the actions are carried out. Your max AP and AP regain per turn is dependent on the level and what character you choose. This of course calls for some strategic thinking as different actions you take can lead to powerful spells and combo. While for the most part regular battle hardly requires much thought, boss battles can prove difficult and will require you to strategize. You can’t win a boss battle by just randomly selecting actions.

Weapons and magic also play a crucial part in the battle system as well. Each weapon has skills that you can unlock if you use the weapon enough. Once unlock you can customize those skills and put them onto other new weapons. Magic works the same way. Spells depends on what gems you equip and how you upgrade your magic. Planning your weapons and magic before a battle is crucial to winning it, especially for boss battles.

The game also offer side-stuff. You can dress up your characters in different clothing which can unlock some scenes. There’s also side quests you can do for the guild with rewards as well.

Sadly, the terrible voice acting can ruin the whole experience for you. The minute I heard the voice acting I just wanted to put down the controller. It seems the populace of Arc Rise all speak monotonously and voided of emotions. I was only able to bare the terrible voice acting for a couple hours. Luckily the game offers a sound options to turn off voice acting so if you can’t stand it just go to options and silence all the voices. Personally they should have kept an option for the original Japanese voice acting since everything is subtitled anyways so I didn’t see why they went through all the trouble to dubbed the game with such horrible voice acting.

If you can look beyond it’s one big flaw, the game can prove to be worthwhile to play.
Rating: 4 / 5

As a child of the 80s, I grew up with traditional Japanese Role-Playing Games (JRPGs) such as Final Fantasy II and III (aka IV and VI respectively), Lufia I and II, Xenogears, Phantasy Star, Breath of Fire III, and many more. These were the golden JRPGs that made most of us older RPG fans hooked on most things Japanese. They maintained a good story that didn’t require a mastery of Jungian and Fruedian psychology, characters a player could actually relate to and understand, simplistic game play that didn’t involve 14-different styles of useless upgrades, and were generally fun and relaxing to play enough to make the phrase, “let’s all go on an adventure,” actually fun to yell!

HOWEVER, in the past 8-10 years, JRPGs have gone… well, weird. With hair and clothing styles birthed from cross-breeding members of Depeche Mode and Lady Gaga, along with the self-loathing characters that suffer from more inner-turmoil than a Coldplay album, JRPGs have just gotten terrible lately. Sure, there have been some notable good ones in recent years such as Tales of Vesperia and… uh… *flips through collection*… Tales of Vesperia, but the vast majority of JRPGs for the console systems have really sunken to new lows (Magna Carta II anyone?). If anything, North American RPGs have really come into their own with titles such as Fallout 3, Mass Effect I and II, Knights of the Old Republic, Fable I and II, and, dare I say it, World of Warcraft.

With all this in mind, Arc Rise Fantasia was a complete breath of fresh air. When first announced and featured back in 2008, software developer Imageepoch promised a classic-style JRPG that went back to combating evil nations, airships, flying dragons, and crystals without weird hair or emo characters. While Arc Rise Fantasia has a very simply story and set of characters, Imageepoch advertises it as such as they know EXACTLY what they created.

This is good as Arc Rise Fantasia will treat traditional JRPG fans with a game they can actually enjoy and not feel weirded out while playing it. Speaking of enjoyment, while RPGs on the XBox360 and PSXIII have advanced graphics and in-game achievements/trophies, it is also for this reason that Arc Rise Fantasia is also a breath of fresh air. While playing the game for the past two days, I found myself considerably more relaxed than usual while playing through say Lost Odyssey or Infinite Undiscovery. This is probably because I’m not constantly staring at a player’s guide or trying to do ridiculous tasks to get any achievements or get the better ending.

I was able to sit back, enjoy an iced raspberry 7UP, and relax as I played through the game akin to how I felt while playing Final Fantasy VI or Breath of Fire IV not having to worry about missing something that you only get if you preordered the game from somewhere or have to download a patch to get 100%.

Pertaining to non-abstracts, the graphics are toned down compared to console RPGs but this is also a breath of fresh air as the designers didn’t disproportionately allocate all their funding to graphics and not actual development. For the Wii, the environments are quite pleasing if not soothing. Several times I found myself wishing I was back on the west coast sipping on the same raspberry 7Up on a beach or near the harbor where I grew up. It was quite nostalgic. The in-game graphics are not so bad although mouth/lip syncing seriously leaves something to be desired.

The game play itself is fairly simplistic. Your battle party has a collective action points pool allowing some character to attack more than once per turn while others stand by. This allows for more developed tactics as you can easily tailor a strategy of attack for each individual battle. Also, battles go by considerably quicker than traditional JRPGs. At level 14 I found myself skimming what were supposed to be moderately difficult fights in under 20 seconds and gaining a decent amount of experience. This makes the game play bearable as it avoids becoming monotonous and repetitive.

Outside of battle, you can customize your weapons with gems that unlock with experience. This allows you to more-or-less keep the kewl looking weapons while maintaining up-to-date attack power and attributes. I still cannot quite figure out how to get the magic orb thingy to work right, but I have not yet needed to get it going since I rely more on items and brute force rather than magic. You can also somewhat change the appearances of the party members via tailors and other clothing items found throughout the game. A nice little side-thingy, but not truly relevant to game play or the plot.

The music is something truly to behold. Yasunori Mitsuda, famed composer of Chrono Trigger and Xenogears has graced Arc Rise Fantasia with a wonderful soundtrack that has a striking resemblance to Eternal Sonata and Skies of Arcadia, but still maintaining its own signature. I personally loved every piano sonata and suite there was. I hope to find and obtain the soundtrack.

Now onto the one big complaint we all have; voice acting.

To put it bluntly, it’s beyond bad. How these voice actors stay employed it beyond me. However, this is solvable by simply turning the voice volume off, but then it means you can’t have voice acting. Oh well.

All in all, Arc Rise Fantasia is a wonderful break from contemporary JRPGs as it gives fans a nostalgic feeling while new fans can enjoy a good game without worrying about gamer score or trophies.

Now, if you all will excuse me. I’m gonna fill up my 7UP and go play some more!

95%, a solid A-!
Rating: 5 / 5

The game is really good love the battle system…BUT….the voice acting was AWFUL!!! The voice actors where very annoying. But everything else is great. I just wish they gave us the option of listing to the Japanese voice actors instead of the awful voice actors we are stuck with.
Rating: 4 / 5

This has been one of my most anticipated titles for Wii, and so far I have to say that I really like it a lot. The graphics, while probably a little rough in places, are nonetheless colorful and pleasant to the eyes, and Yasunori Mitsuda’s music is a definite plus. The battle system is also quite complicated yet at the same time fairly accessible.

As far as the story and characters go, this is basically stuff that we’ve already seen in many other RPGs, but there’s nothing wrong with that. Probably my only major complaint is Ignition’s localization job. As everyone else mentioned, the voice work is disappointingly off-color and flat, but not enough to ruin the actual game (and you can mute the voices, too).

ARC RISE FANTASIA is an acquired taste of a game. Anyone expecting another TALES OF SYMPHONIA or FINAL FANTASY VI probably won’t find it here in this title, but anyone hungry for an RPG on the Wii since TALES OF SYMPHONIA’s spin-off will undeniably devour it.
Rating: 4 / 5

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