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Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology

Posted by GG Goblin On March - 9 - 2018

The time-traveling JRPG jumps through time.

 
Gamers were first introduced to Atlus’ time-traveling JRPG shenanigans on the DS back in 2011. Now, almost as if taking its cue from the time-traveling in the actual game, Radiant Historia has appeared on the 3DS, giving players a chance once again to enjoy this great game which has been obviously influenced by the likes of Chrono Trigger. But being only a port of an old DS game with a few improvements, does Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology belong in this time and space?

 
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Well, it is not like we don’t live in a time that seems to be overwhelmed with re-releases and remakes. Barely a week goes past without one game or another being given a new coat of paint and dropped onto a new platform. It all comes down to the game as to whether it is still going to appeal to new players, or if the nostalgia factor is enough to tempt fans to dip in for a further playthrough. Fortunately, Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology’s time-traveling antics are just as relevant now as they were seven years ago.

 
The story is where Radiant Historia really shines. Any tale involving time travel runs the risk of becoming convoluted, or packed with plot holes. In Radiant Historia, players take on the role of a soldier named Stocke who finds himself with the ability to jump through time. Early in the game, the player will make a decision which splits the timeline into two, giving yet more choices for the player to make. Players will find themselves having to change things or make decisions in one timeline, to change the other and then proceed on their journey.

 
The writing is absolutely stellar, easily flowing without issues. The inclusion of two different timelines and being able to hop between them to solve puzzles is dealt with very well, and as the timelines proceed, they become more and more different.

 
As may well be expected, there is a certain amount of repetition to be found in moving through the nodes in history as the player tries to achieve the desired outcome. Players will have to pay attention to the story in order to work out what they have to do, and sometimes the clues are ambiguous enough that the player will find themselves unnecessarily replaying sectors that they have already worked through. The game can be a little frustrating for those who don’t pay attention. Even when they are in the right place at the right time, there will still be scenes that need repeating, and encounters that will have to be played through again.

 
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The combat in Radiant Historia offers up some surprises. While for the most part, combat follows a formula that will be familiar to any JRPG fan, things are changed up with the enemies being on a 3×3 grid, and players are expected to make the most of being able to knock the enemy around the grid to chain combos and cause more damage. It is a great system, especially when you throw in traps, and a lot of fun. The turn based encounters with this 3×3 grid system make the repetition a little easier to swallow, which is no bad thing in a time-traveling game.

 
So far, pretty much everything is the same as the original release. There are a few additions and improvements however. Visually, it seems that the game hasn’t changed much. It has a higher resolution, and there are new portraits and cut scenes, but the actual gameplay visuals are pretty much the same. The UI has been given a good polish, which is nice. Also a nice bonus is the fact that many of the characters are now voiced, and voiced quite well at that, adding more atmosphere to the adventure.

 
For the players considering jumping into the game again and reliving their Radiant Historia adventure, there is some more content. A new timeline is available, known as Possible History and involving a character called Nemesia, and players can enjoy this new part of the story either combined into the main game by choosing the Perfect Mode, or can play this extra content once they finish the main game, as it was on the DS, in Append Mode. This additional content is nothing hugely to shout about, but it is a nice inclusion and ties in with the main story in a satisfying way. There are also some new difficulty levels for those looking to enjoy just the story, or more of a challenge.

 
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Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology on 3DS is a remake of an already great game. For those JRPG fans who didn’t explore the original on DS, this really is the best way to discover this great game, either with all of the new content or in its more original form. Fans of the original may not be overly impressed with the extras, but it has been long enough now that a revisit is surely worthwhile. Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology is a memorable RPG that deserves a place in every RPG fans library.

 

 ★★★★★★★★½☆ 



 

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