Arcana Review

Arcana is an old SNES role-playing game that features the hero, Rooks, and his friends as they try to save the kingdom of Elemen and protect the daughters of King Wagnall. Rooks is the last Card Master of his race, and controls the power of elements. He can cast four elemental summons, Dao (Earth), Sylph (Wind), Marid (Water), and Efrite (Fire). Various friends of his join his party, but this is heavily determined by turns of the plot. Rooks begins with Teefa, a man named Ariel's apprentice. Later, he meets Salah, and her bodyguard, Axs. From time to time, he runs into an elf named Darwin. These four characters are playable in the game; the first two, girls, are better with magic, and the boys are better with physical fighting. Some of the non-playable characters that show up in the game are Ariel, Galneon, and Empress Rimsala, who are conspirators trying to bring the Reign of Evil over the empire of Elemen.

The music is a bit old-fashioned as well, but this does not make it bad. It is of the typical RPG style, with synthesized melodies that vary only the slightest and repeat every half-minute. However, every song is very fitting for each area. The music inside the Icicle Dungeon exudes the atmosphere of being cold and lost in a magical and fascinating area.

In summation, Arcana has its irksome qualities, but is in itself a game that must be played before delving into the world of modern RPGs. All of the troubles in Arcana keep it from being less than challenging, and give it a unique character that takes role-playing games on a different branch that has been rarely explored since. The plot comes in fast-paced spurts, but has an appropriate depth that contributes to twists of the game. Music and graphics, both moving to a forefront of priority in the most recent games, are not aspects of Arcana that are lacking. It is not overly lengthy, as opposed to this review, but it is worth every minute spent.

8 / 10

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