Stella glow is a tactical RPG using an isometric viewpoint for the Nintendo 3DS. It was developed by ImageEpoch and published by Sega in Japan and Atlas here in the west, releasing on June 4th 2015 in Japan, November 17th in North America and March 11th 2016 in Europe, it retails for £39.99
(Thanks go to to Benn Radford for submitting this review)
This story revolves around Alto, a young boy suffering from amnesia who was taken in to the village of Mithra by a girl named Lisette and her mother. One day whilst hunting he encounters a witch who he implores her to use her magic to help cure a man in his village who is suffering from ‘crystallisation’ Unfortunately things don’t go exactly to plan and this leads to Alto, Lisette, members of the Royal Guard and others you will meet along the way having to quest across the world to restore peace to the world.
Visually the game is a absolute treat with fully animated, anime styled cut-scenes, with that and its bright character icons & models it will have you staring at the screen in awe for hours! The 3D on this game is simply beautiful as well, I often found myself distracted and looking at the environments instead of casting my spells. The music holds up as well as the graphics do, title composer Yasunori Mitsuda has done an superb job of keeping the music fresh and an all around pleasure to listen to especially with headphones. Most of the important scenes are also voice acted very well I felt this helped me connect to each character more.
This game doesn’t have very many complex mechanics to it however it does still have a few for you to play around with. The first of which is the free time and mission time mechanic, in the upper left corner of the screen there is a colored orb, blue means free time and red means mission time. Free time has several different options of how to use it, starting with the Knights barracks, this is where you can speak to your comrades during free time to learn about them and increase affinity with them, however it also allows you to learn new skills only learnt through this bonding. Next you can explore, this is simple as you just go through a short cut scene and receive an item, after this you can unlock the Red Bear Tavern where you can take on side jobs but sadly there is no gameplay to these side jobs simply a short cut scene followed by some rewards. Finally there is the tuning hall, here is where you can tune a witch, in the later game when you engage in conversations with various witches black thorns may appear this means their hearts are locked and affinity cannot be increased unless a tuning occurs, when you perform a tuning you enter the spirit world of the selected witch and complete a mission which will reward you with increased affinity and potentially unlock new skils. select the desired witch, you then enter her spirit world then a mission will occur, complete the mission and you complete the tuning this will also increase affinity and potentially allow you to learn new skills. Free time is limited, so choose your activities wisely.
After free time is over mission time will commence, this part of the game is central and fairly self explanatory. Gear up using the shops available to you and sally forth to complete missions and continue with the deep and highly engaging story
In Stella Glow you can also augment your weapons with orbs, this process simply involves equipping a orb to a weapon and this will buff the desired item. You can also create new orbs via orb fragments.
Free missions are a core part of Stella Glow, when you enter the world map you will be presented with previously visited destinations, some of which will have a shadow monster over them, this is a free battle where you can battle enemies, grind and level up your characters. There are also red shadows that require play coins to face however these battles are usually a lot harder than the normal free battles as the monster levels are higher than yours but the rewards are also obviously higher too.
Stella Glow is a incredible game with so much right and very little wrong with it. The only negatives I have is that it is not completely voice acted, but like many games with lots of dialogue it is normal for it not to be all voice acted, leading on from this I can see some people getting frustrated about the amount of reading involved in the story. Overall though I believe Stella Glow is a must buy for strategy rpg lovers or anyone who wants a deep story on the Nintendo 3DS.
Stella Glow (3DS) - 8/10
Who should buy this
- Anyone who loves strategy RPGS
- Anyone looking for a deep story where you can connect with each character
- Players looking for a lengthy enjoyable Nintendo 3DS game
Who should avoid this
- Players who hate reading and just want to get into the action
- Anyone who is bored of the same old RPG trope of a hero with amnesia who has to save the world
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Straight from the streets of SouthTown, all Dunks Powah'd and ready to Bust A Wolf. Catch me on Twitch/YouTube.