“Readers beware: This game is not a folklore”
Gamers; Folklore was released on October 9, 2007 and I am playing it on July 16 of 2011, and I will admit this game is aggravating. This game should not be called folklore because it is not a game that I will tell to the future generations at all, and neither should you. The key elements such as story, music and graphics all looked great, but the main part of the game; the core part of this was terrible, and here is why.
You start out by playing as 2 characters in the beginning of the game, which are Ellen and Keats. I really liked Ellen and Keats, both were cool characters. They both had their own personalities, however I wish they expanded on it, rather than just making one character seem like a school girl and the other seem like an ultra bad ass. Ellen throughout the game is trying to find her mother, and the incident on what happened 17 years ago in the village of Doolin, but the villagers won’t aid her. Keats however gets involved because he receives a phone call informing about a lady needing help and soon gets entangled with Ellen into discovering what happened 17 years ago for a story for his magazine. This is good and all, but the story didn’t really provide a reason to keep playing it, it seemed more of a back ground story to just support characters. Also the story is told through a comic book type of art which really did interest me in the first few minutes, but bored me to death at the end, this is because there was no voice acting during those parts, however there was voice acting towards cinematic cut scenes. Overall even toward the end of the game, I felt that this story was not what I thought it could be, I expected better because it seemed like a RPG, with interesting characters, but I was wrong, which is why it’s disappointing, and which is why I give I a 6/10.
The game play consisted of using what are called Folks. Basically you can use either Ellen, or Keats simultaneously, which tell a different part of the story, and different views along with different fighting styles, and some enemies. Even though using Folks was fun during the first chapter, and helping them get new moves, but after the first chapter it became unneeded. Also the Folks in my opinion were really annoying because the requirements for leveling up a folk was dumb, why not just give a certain amount of experience to a Folk for it to level up; rather they have you needing to absorb a certain amount of Folk to gain certain advantages. This is great an all, but then there is another downside. After you beat any chapter in which you get the Folk in, and then proceed on to the next chapter; the Folk becomes utterly useless. It’s as though all the training you gave to the Folk becomes useless because a better Folk comes around. Also another thing which is bad about the story is that, I wouldn’t suggest anyone to play the stories side by side: meaning playing Ellen in chapter 1 then Keats chapter 1 simultaneously. This is because the player goes through the same scenes, and talks to about the same characters, and it soon becomes monotonous. Even when this isn’t done; the game play is also horrible because this really felt like copy of Pokémon, combined with Persona, and then with a third person Sci-Fi Fantasy story. While I was playing this I was just thinking. If I wanted to play a game like this why don’t I just play Pokémon where you catch little monsters, and train them, or why don’t I play Persona in which you catch monsters and train them as well. The game also seems to be awful due to the fact that it has a detective type mystery into it, but does it use properly, and the answer is simple. NO! This game uses the idea of other game like Persona in which you talk to certain people to get passed the story. Sound familiar? So I have to ask you why play this game when you can you play Pokémon, Persona or any other game which fully utilizes the idea of voice, the idea of capturing, and the using the concept of comic book style was such a waste. I give the game play a 3/10; a failure to the company to understand that when you utilize these type of ideas they need to be done right or not done at all.
When I was playing this game, I REALLY enjoyed one thing, and that was the music and voice acting. It was incredible. Sometimes I just stop playing my character to hear the luxurious music the game had to give me. I also would just replay a cinematic scene to just hear the great voice acting from both Ellen, and Keats. However this is where the sound section will fall. The voicing was not even close to enough as already stated. The game should have had voice acting for all the comic book sections, rather than just the cinematic scenes in which it didn’t. Even though this was a small folly on the companies fault I would say that I really liked the orchestra type background music during certain parts of the game and really wished it was used everywhere, which sadly it wasn’t. During battle sometimes the music wasn’t there, or wasn’t louder than the actions that the Folks used which was utterly depressing because unless you are in a stealth game music is needed. I give Music an 8/10.
Overall throughout the game besides listening to the sound, one thing I also did enjoy tremendously was the graphics. They were beautiful and exuberant when they needed to be and they were melancholy and morbid where they needed to be. For example in the village during the day it felt really lively and it made sense why the people were out during the day instead of during the night, and during the night I did get a feel why the citizens didn’t go out because it was dark and gloomy. The game also had an artistic and cartoonish feel which you get usually in Anime shows. For example within the Pub; the Pub itself felt very much like Pub, with a great amount of drinks, stools and the style and color it had was vibrant and vivid, also feeling it belonged there. Backgrounds and scenery weren’t the only thing to focus on. The characters too looked excellent. From the boat driver to the Faery Lord all of them looked as if they had their own personality. Keats looked like a badass because of the glasses, long hair, the overcoat and the tie. All of those things gave him the look for what fitted with his personality. Beside the characters, the Folks looked very cool as well. Each one had a unique looking skill, and every one of them actually looked detailed. Overall for the graphics I give it a 10/10.
Folklore can be said in a single word a “decent” game. This game is very much a copy of other games like Persona and Pokémon because it utilizes things that specifically belongs to them and doesn’t use it to the best of its abilities. It also does have good points, but as already stated the games core is the part which should have been great, which it wasn’t in which case I give it a score of 6.75/10. Would I recommend buying it? No, save your money and buy White Knight Chronicles, or Demon Souls.
About the author
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