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Dinoracha's Review of Summon Night: Swordcraft Story

Overview (Without Spoilers):
Summon Night: Swordcraft Story (or SNSS for short) has you playing as, depending on which gender you choose, Cleru, (Boy) or Pratty, (Girl). Your father, one of the highest Craftlords ever has disappeared, and you must take in his foot-steps to become a Craftlord (a person who can create the world's most amazing weaponry ever) as well. You'll begin to fight in a tournament to slowly raise your ranking in the world, but find things aren't so simple...

SNSS takes a page out of Tales Of Phantasia. Instead of normal, turn-based fighting back and forth, you are set in a scrolling screen with enemies coming at you, all based in real-time. Though you fight by yourself, you can call your Summon Creature (or ally) to come and aid you with offensive magic, item usage, and defensive magic.

Unique Point(s):
A key feature makes SNSS different from other RPGs: its weapon crafting system. Because the world is mostly revolved around weapon crafters, you as well have to craft better weapons to use in battle. This is done by finding items that can be smelted into workable ore, and finding 'Techniques' that allow you to craft a new weapon, using these ore's. Though there are only 5 ores, many items you come across will only smelt into a certain ore, or multiple ores, depending on rarity. Techniques are found in many places, so exploring towns and talking to everyone is vital.

The graphics for SNSS are fairly plain and dulled, save for characters and enemies, who take on a cartoony, with a touch of anime-ish art effect. Dungeons and towns are just static, normal color's that really don't stand out at all, and just feel boring to look at.

The FX for the game aren't the utter greatest. A sword used against a slime monster makes the same sound when used against a metalic monster; The same general sounds, with no 'creativity' to it. Music however is a bit higher quality; though the same stereotypical music (up-beat for towns, dark for dungeons.), the music when in battle has a catchy feel to it, though after the first few hours, the luster begins to die down. Poo.

SNSS has a new weapon-crafting system that adds a new element to the usual RPG drawing board: being able to get ores and craft your own weaponry. Though at times it becomes slightly frustrating when you're missing a few ores, it makes that extra urge to have you explore just a little more to a dungeon floor, or to re-visit constantly. Though weak in presentation, SNSS makes up for that in entertaining game-play and character dialogue.

Final Word:
Though biased (Since I own the game. ^-^), I must say that Summon Night: Swordcraft Story is a definite choice if you enjoy hand-held RPG's, as well as more cutesy, less difficult style of game. The story-line will soon suck you in, and you may find yourself playing for long stints.

Rating: 9.0/10.