Rainbow Moon – Review

A review of Rainbow Moon I wrote for the website www.square-go.com

You always need certain kind of games in order to sell consoles. Once upon a time it was a platform game with a cute animal based character on the box, today it tends to be some kind of first person shooting game set in brown worlds. But also, for a brief shining moment, you needed a role playing game, a game like Rainbow Moon.

Rainbow Moon is a tactical role-playing game, one that involves a lot of trawling through dungeons, a game that has grids and hit points and swords that can be improved through adding materials and spells and levelling up and quests and side quests and random encounters and a whole load of other things.

It’s a game with a story, not a great story but enough of a story to keep you moving on through the game. It looks a treat, taking an isometric view of the game world, something not too dissimilar to the Japanese developed Disgaea series. The world looks lush with a cartoony style that is easy on the eye and it needs to be because you will be looking at it. A lot.

This is a game about grinding, about making those incremental changes to your character in order to mold them into your perfect death sword-wielding killing machine. And, as such, there will be a lot of repetition; you will wander around the same levels fighting the same enemies until your characters become strong enough to push onwards in the game world. If you read that sentence and nod approvingly, then this is something for you. If the thought of spending hours grinding away just to get one of your special skills up to the next level fills you with a cold dread then stay away.

Rainbow Moon is a game that will last you a fair old while and this is only to be applauded. It is a whole mass of cliches culled from various parts of the role-playing genre but that’s okay because it does it in the right way. It has lots of tutorials and guides in order to ease you into the various game systems it contains. It’s constantly there offering advice which is ideal for the person who hasn’t dipped their toe in this particular water before.

So an ideal package then? Near enough. Whilst the game is great for the role-playing beginner it doesn’t quite have that spark that will keep a fan of the genre totally hooked. That kind of player will see the joins in the game and it might create that feeling of having been here before. It also feels like it would be more at home on something like the PlayStation Vita; with the time that the game lasts it would be nice to be able to pick it up wherever you fancy rather than being tied to the TV.

Four stars out of five

Originally published July 27th 2012

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