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Fairy Tail

Posted by GG Goblin On August - 6 - 2020

An anime tie-in JRPG.

 
While I can chirp on about the joys of Naruto, One Piece or Bleach, I can happily admit that my anime knowledge is far from up to date. Hiro Mashima’s Fairy Tail is new to me, despite it being around for quite a few years now. Still, this isn’t going to stop me from jumping into the latest game from Gust and Tecmo Koei, which happens to be based upon the popular manga and anime series. I mean, it shouldn’t be too hard to work out what is going on, right?

 


 
Fairy Tail follows the adventures of a group of members of the Fairy Tail Guild, a guild of wizards that use their powers to help others, in exchange for remuneration. There are many such guilds in the world of Fairy Tail, but our heroes are at the top of their game. Or at least they were. Due to certain events, the heroes have been missing for seven years and have only just arrived back at their home to find that the guild has fallen in the rankings and become a bit of a joke. This is pretty much where the game starts, with the overall goal of restoring the Fairy Tail guild to former glory and a pristine reputation.

 
Right off the bat, it is obvious that Fairy Tail is a game for the fans of the anime. There is very little background given to the player about the world in which the game is set, or even the characters and their relationships. For the fans, apparently the game covers a few of the story arcs from the anime, but obviously that would also be lost on any newcomers. Thankfully, information does become available, albeit not in an elegant way, and the fact that the game is a pretty straight forward tie-in JRPG means that there is nothing really stopping those new to this world to enjoy their time.

 


 
There is a main story running through the game, which is all good fun, but the majority of the players time will be spent on restoring the reputation and building up the guild. This will involve taking on little jobs or requests for the most part, and allows the player a certain amount of freedom in what they want to do. While many of these jobs will involve fetch items or fighting specific monsters, they are all quite easy to follow and don’t become too tiresome, especially as there is always something new to get involved with. Outside of main missions and the side jobs, the player will be chatting with NPCs and building relationships, or working towards upgrading facilities at the guild. Fairy Tail doesn’t hang around and keeps the player working at a decent pace, not giving them a chance to get bored.

 
Fairy Tail’s world is broken up into smaller sections that the player will gradually unlock, allowing them access to new places and more quests. The world is divided into populated towns and settlements, and wilderness areas with roaming monsters to do battle with, if the player chooses. These random battles are easy enough to avoid should the player wish. The environments are nicely presented in the game, with the populated areas especially being nice and colourful and well detailed. The same can be said for the actual characters, who are all very well done, and could easily have crossed over from some of the other big name anime out there. There is also a nice sense of humour to the game, which maintains the fun nature.

 
There are a selection of different characters that will become available as the player progresses through the game, all of which have different personalities and abilities. Some will undoubtedly stand out more than others, but the player can most of the time choose which to include in their team. Some story missions will demand certain characters, but at least that keeps the action varied. There is a social system in which teaming up characters can lead to an increase in their relationship, allowing for some welcome buffs.

 


 
As there will be a lot of fighting in Fairy Tail, it is fortunate that the combat is so enjoyable. As this is a wizards guild, the combat will rely mostly on magic attacks, and is played out in turns. This will be familiar to many JRPG players, and each character will have a wide selection of different abilities to use, which will only grow as they make it through the game. There is an elemental system in which attacks have an element that enemies could be weak or strong against, allowing for a level of strategy. There is also the fact that many attacks have an area of effect, and choosing attacks that will damage the most enemies, who appear on a grid, will have to be considered. There is no point in using a powerful and expensive attack that will only damage one enemy sue to where they are standing. It’s a cool system that can be manipulated by some abilities that can actually move where the enemy is standing, allowing a certain level of teaming up. Of course, that is not where the teaming up ends, as a meter will fill with each attack and eventually allow the player to launch an attack that involves the whole team. Being magical in nature, most of the attacks are pretty impressive to watch on the screen.

 
As for performance, the game seems to run quite well on the Switch, both in handheld and docked mode. There may be some slight slowdown during the more hectic action on screen, but nothing too distracting. The bright colours and distinct characters look great in handheld mode on the little Switch screen, making the game perfect for out and about play. There is a simplicity to Fairy Tail, in which the player will take on jobs to raise the guild ranking in order to unlock more jobs and maybe even a story mission, that does make it easy to play. It is so often that JRPGs overcomplicate things and can leave the player confused or not knowing what to do. This is not the case for Fairy Tail, although I would guess that more experienced players would be looking for a little more depth.

 


 
Fairy Tail fans will find plenty to enjoy in the game, and will have a much easier time getting started. However, the simple layout and relatively low difficulty also suggests that Fairy Tail would be suited to newcomers. Interesting characters, good presentation and a decent combat system add up to a fun game. It may not be the perfect Fairy Tail game for either the fans or newcomers, but the game will still provide plenty of enjoyment for JRPG fans.

 

 ★★★★★★★½☆☆ 



 

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