Review by SoulLinking

Reviewed: 08/10/00 | Updated: 08/10/00

Koei's Finest Masterpiece

Keep in mind, this game is better then almost every genesis game but it is an NES port with slightly enhanced graphics and a few anime cutscenes here and there. So my review is going to be tenative towards that. I always review a game for time period..as to not punish it for being old and not able to hold everything i might like.

Before I start the Review i'll tell you strait up, my reviewing scale actually uses the WHOLE ranking scale, not just giving crap lower ratings then other crap for games are reviewed too high in general from what i've seen. (10 being legendary and 1 being unplayable). If you find this...BUY IT. The only reason i would tell you not too is if you cannot stand Strategy RPG games....for this has a great control system story and well..ill tell you in the review. Buy at any price.

Story- 10

Set on a fictional world, and in the midevil age (aproximately 1470 on our world), with magic reigning the land. Six good wizards control the land along with the many lords and prices under the crown. All is right and well within the world until one day a Dragon comes to invade Ishmera (which is an island by the way and reminds me of midevil britain.) The six wizards barely defeat this dragon but in order to keep him trapped away they implant the dragon's essence into a crown and put their own essences within six gems thus holding all magic unto one force to need if another threat arises one day. The next King however is a cruel and malicious man and rules with an iron fist controlling all the other lords with the ultimate magic of the GemFire crown. One day his daughter Robyn decides she cannot bare the tyranny beheld by his father among the people of the land. She takes a knife and breaks the spell of gemfire by prying the gems off of the crown, the gems then launching themselves into the night and throwing themselves unto all the corners of the land, thus throwing the land into war over who shall be the ruler. The game starts off with an anime cutscene starring the first six lords that the magicians have sided with and a scene of the king with the fire dragon. The story is very in depth and it has four different start points with different lords in charge as of different time periods. Its very in depth and talking takes place throughout. In other words its a FANTASTIC STORY.

Graphics- 9 out of 10

Keep in mind...these graphics were meant for a freaking NES game. This game pound for pound has some of the best graphics for any sega game and blows everything NES except maybe a couple titles out of the water. The crisp look of the Pastha, the battle animations, the wonderful intro and ending were obviously redone in the Sega version. Trust me....these animations are incredible looking. But so are all the other graphics! The portraits, territories, water....everything. Really good graphics. Definitely above and beyond what you would expect.

Sound- 10 out of 10- For it's time these melodies are pound for pound..some of the best i've ever heard. The soundtrack to this game is phenomanal. You have to hear these tunes to believe how phenomanal they are. My personal favorites are the Pastha theme, the Wyveryn theme, and the Introduction theme. The sound effects are good too. Not too many, not too little. When i say Legendary sound....then i mean legendary sound. Definitely a huge buying point of the game.

Atmosphere- 8 out of 10- The atmosphere is classic. You really feel as if you are there....eight for me is a classic rating (aka super mario world). I can't give this higher then that though...for even though the atmosphere is pretty awesome...it doesn't sap me in like some games. Don't take me wrong, the atmospheres still great. Especially if you are playing the whole game through the Chrysalis family. But...some games such as the Final Fantasy series have better atmosphere.

Gameplay- 7 out of 10- Before you see this keep in mind Seven = Awesome, or a game like Contra in gameplay. The positives are....the two player mode is godly, battling is godly, the game is incredibly fun to micromanage, and hiring monsters is incredibly fun. The only bad thing is that some of the computers are morons. The best ones (there are about 60 lords all with different ai ratings) however will give you a run for your money...so i wont deduct points. Another rating is that if you are playing one on one instead of two on two (email to find out the way we do it...and no this is not a code), once the tide is turned and the other guy is crushed it gets pretty boring for the other guy. Besides those though...the gameplay rating. The gameplay is up there with classics like Contra and Metroid (only this is better then both of those titles). Also this game takes a little bit of a learning curve (about 10 minutes) and you must be a tad intelligent to play it (i played it when i was eight).

Overall- 9 out of 10- Incredible

Drool. Drool viciously and go buy this game right now. Don't wait....if you haven't been able to tell this game owns by my review then you don't deserve to play it. BUY!!

Gemfire is otherwise known as Koei's finest masterpiece.

-Link

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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