Mysterious Song Beta Review
By Mason Flinn (OldSchoolGamer/OSG)
I thought I would Re-Release This Review of the old beta test that OSG had done over a year ago with the excitement surrounding Mysterious Songs Pending release. Enjoy
To start off, for all of you who might be unaware what Mysterious Song is, it’s an MS-DOS RPG created by Darkness Ethereal that is being completely remade and redone for the Turbo Grafx/PC Engine CD. The team at Frozen Utopia has headed up this project.
The game starts up with 2 flags to choose from. An american flag which stands for english text, and a spanish flag which will allow you to play the game through in spanish. There are plans for a French and German translation of the game as well, but nothing has been completed/implemented at this given time. When you get passed the title menu, you will have 2 modes of play available: Original, and Balanced. Original has you play the game through as was originally intended with enemies at their normal strengths. Your characters also gain the standard amount of EXP from boss fights and enemies. In Balanced mode, experience points from defeating enemies and Boss's are gained at a higher rate to help you progress through the game faster.
Before I go any further, let me just say that this game is short for an RPG. It can be generally completed in about 6-7 hours. The time it takes to complete the game greatly depends on what mode you pick from the start (Original or Balanced). This RPG is very old school, in the sense that you HAVE to do lots of level grinding to get from 1 area to the next. Whichever mode you choose at the beginning of the game, will have a great impact on how much grinding you need to do in order to progress though the game. In the final version, there will be an "EX game" available to play through upon completion of the game. This mode will allow you to play an even harder version of the game adding to replay-ability.
Graphically, the game looks great. The characters and levels all have a professional look to them. The opening cut-scene, character portraits, enemies, and backgrounds are all hand drawn and done well. Visually, this game is beautiful. Battles are fast paced and I have not yet run across much, if any slowdown in the game. The Spells in the game are not spectacular to look at.
Mysterious Song also features some great audio content. There is actual spoken dialogue in game, and the music is CD quality. The Piano seems to be the instrument of choice for Mysterious Song. Just about(but not all) of the music, from the opening song to some of the the background music in game, to when you need to save at an Inn is done on piano. The background music sets the mood really well for each part of the game. Depending on what area you are in, the music will pick up, or slow down. So your never listening to the same track over and over. The music in Mysterious Song is done well, and is a treat to listen to.
The Gameplay in Mysterious Song is straightforward and easy to use. The controls do take some getting used to, but once you get them down, your good to go. I am currently playing the game via mednafen(as is most of the team working on the game), but I can only assume the actual controls will be as responsive when played on actual PCE/TG hardware.
The story in Mysterious Song surrounds Spear. A boy with no knowledge of his past, whom is to become a Toren Knight. At the start of the game, he hears a voice calling himself Grimm telling him that he is different. Who Grimm is, and what he wants with Spear remains a Mystery. Throughout your adventure through the game, you will run into 2 other characters(Tiger and Ryanna) whom will join your party. To get through the game, you will need to learn all your parties strength's and weakness's, and use them to your advantage. You cant go into every battle with the same strategy, or else you will perish.
In conclusion, there are still some bugs to be worked out, the EX game implemented, and cut scenes added in, but overall the game at this point is shaping up pretty nicely. The game is currently scheduled to release in March, 2010. Pre-orders for Mysterious Song are officially open. If you would like to pre-order a copy of this game, please go to http://www.frozenutopia.com/
*All snapshots are taken from a BETA version of this game and are not of the final product.