Ar NoSurge..a very different game

There’s this game that I have been playing for over a month now. I mentioned it in my Game of the Month July blog, and I’ll probably mention it again in my Game of the Month August blog. For days now I have been thinking that I still need to write a review for it, and I find I am hesitant to do that. I wonder why? Because I like this game, I’ve played it for enough hours to know that. But there are aspects about the game that they could have left out, for me, they don’t add to the game. A lot of innuendo that I could have done without, but I guess there’s a reason why this game is rated for 17+. But, if that bugs me, why do I keep on playing it? The answer may be simple: because the story intrigues me! Let me collect my thoughts here on Ar Nosurge, Ode to an Unborn Star on the PS Vita.

imageThe game is a RPG, but unlike most RPG this one is located in space and not on a planet, but in a huge starship. The history of why the people got stranded on this ship isn’t really told, you start your story playing the characters of Delta Lanthanoir and Casty Riernott. Delta seems to have lost his memory, but we learn he has been discharged dishonorably from team Plasma for jeopardizing the human population in Fellion. Fellion is a stronghold against the Sharl, winged creatures that seem intent on kidnapping as many humans as they can. Casty still wants to help Delta despite his earlier betrayal, and pretty soon she manages to get Delta hired again by Plasma, enabling them to go on a mission together to find and bring back a friend of theirs, Sarly, who is working undercover in Quantury. You see, another fraction of the human population lives there, in harmony with the Sharl and dedicated to the church that they feel will help them escape all the hardship the Fellion group suffer. But while my loyalties where firmly with Delta and Casty, pretty soon you find that all is not as simple and clear as you think. This becomes very apparent when you switch to playing as Ionasal kkll Preciel with the robot Earthes.

imageYou miss a lot of background history, sometimes things are touched upon that happened earlier, leaving you with a feeling that you want to know more. All the characters played a key role in the destruction of their home planet, friendships were broken, alliances were made, and it all influences the story you are playing now. I have read up on some stuff online that helped. Let’s just say that good and evil aren’t as defined as I thought, and I’m curious to know how it all will end.

The driving force behind the battles in this story, is song magic. The heroines in this story are capable of singing to help you fight the enemies. So Delta or Earthes do the fighting, and then if they’ve made enough combos, Casty or Ion will have enough power to use song magic and obliterate the enemies. To get a wider arsenal of songs, and make the songs more powerful, the heroines have to share their genometrics, let’s say their thought world or subconscious, with others. Where it gets a bit weird, is that Delta or Earthes can go into the heroines minds and live through what they think. Its a way for the characters to get to know all their fears and secrets, and make it possible to form a deeper bond. It’s called Diving, and let me tell you, those thought-worlds are strange, very strange indeed. The makers of this game sure had a vivid imagination. Taking the right actions being in the ladies genometrics lets the guys earn a thought gem.

imageAfter that they can bathe together, and they can place these thought gems in each other’s bodies, changing their stats. While writing this I know how wrong this must sound. Like I said at the beginning, it’s more the innuendo behind it that makes it all worse then it really is. That takes me back to the reason why I like the game: it’s not as crude as it sounds. In reality, the characters spend a lot of time together chatting while sitting in the bath and getting to know each other and develop deep feelings. Friendships between other characters are formed through chatter, sometimes talking about things that seem very unimportant, sometimes they say the most moving things.

Quantury, genometrics, sharlSo, can I recommend that you play the game? It’s a beautiful game, with lots of attention to detail and a lot of voice acting. The music is compelling, and the battle system is okay. There’s a bit of simple synthesizing in the game, but the little dance they do while synthesizing is strange and out of place. That doesn’t detract from the fact that the story is strong and very intelligent, and it makes the game feel a bit like a beautiful visual novel. If you don’t mind the strangeness of the diving and the bathing together, plus the sometimes skimpy clothing of the heroines, I can indeed recommend this game.

Should you want to give it a try, you can find some good beginners tips here

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