[Beyond PlayStation] Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition Review
Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition from Stego Soft and DANGEN Entertainment is an homage to the old-school JRPG classics, now out on Nintendo Switch. Learn more in our Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition review!
In Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition from indie Stego Soft and publisher DANGEN Entertainment you will dive into a game that is an homage to the old-school JRPG of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) era, mixed with the quality of life improvements you’d expect from a game released in the 21st century, as well as some elements from visual novels and adventure games. It’s a nice mix of different elements and gameplay mechanics that make this a very fun JRPG that shines on the Nintendo Switch.
Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition features four difficulty settings. Normal is the standard experience, balanced to offer a good challenge without overwhelming players with battles that are too difficult. In Hard, the challenge ramps up a bit, so you might have to end up grinding for a bit to gain enough experience points to level up so that you can boost your stats. And then there’s Expert, a difficulty setting that you should only select if you know what you’ll be going up against, and you’re ready to do whatever it takes to survive. On the other side of the spectrum is the Story difficulty, which grants you a special optional ability that can be used in most battles to win the fight – and yes, this does include boss fights!
Something I liked is that there are no random battles in Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition. You can see enemies walking around in each area that you visit, and when you come into contact with them, you’ll quickly start the battle. Something else the game does great is letting you know when you’re going to enter a boss fight, giving you a chance to back out of going into the next battle so that you can make sure you’re properly prepared, have enough healing items on you, and are ready to go.
Once you enter a fight, you’ll get to use your attacks and skills, use items, defend to lower the damage you receive, check your status, wait, or try to escape. In battle, you are free to experiment around with each party members’ attacks and skills to find the right combination that will lead you to victory. All of their hit points (HP) and mana points (MP) will be restored after each fight, so you won’t have to worry about finding healing items or using healing skills outside of battle to recover from any wounds suffered. It’s a system that is definitely different from most JRPG out there! Oh, and before I forget, you should know that a bit of each character’s MP will be recovered at the start of each turn, so be sure to make the most of it!
To be able to plan each fight, you will need to get to know your opponents. The more enemies you fight, the more you will learn about their abilities, strengths, and weaknesses, allowing you to use this information to destroy them. Something else you should pay attention to is the bar at the top of the screen. This bar will let you know the order in which each party member and enemy will take its turn during battle, which you can use to your advantage to minimize the potential of your enemies getting the upper hand.
As you defeat enemies and win battles, you will gain experience points, which will allow you to level up once you’ve collected enough. Once you do, you will be rewarded with points you can allocate to a character’s power, defense, agility, and wisdom stats. Power will increase your physical power, magic attack power, and healing power. Defense will boost your HP and physical and magical defense. Agility increases your speed, the chance of dealing a critical hit, and boosts your dodge rate. Wisdom will increase your MP, MP regeneration, and critical hit damage. You’ll have to make each point you allocate count so that you can have a balanced party.
You will collect many resources during your time with Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition. These can be used in the Crafting section of the game to create new items that will aid you on your adventure. As long as you have the right recipes, you’ll be able to concoct healing potions, items that deal damage to all enemies, potions to cure your characters of poison, and more. Crafting is also how you improve and upgrades your weapons and other equipment. Once you find the right ingredients, go into the Crafting menu, and check out what can be upgraded for each of your party members. Be sure to constantly check this, because upgrading, say, your weapon, can make a huge difference in battle.
Along with the main story quests you’ll be taking on to progress through the world of Ara Fell, there are also going to be side-quests you can take on. These could be for simple things such as delivering a letter or collecting the ingredients someone needs to make a salad or to finding your family’s lost cat to taking on special bounties for the Ranger’s Guild. These bounties will task you with finding and defeating mini-bosses. Once you take on a bounty, you will get some information on your target and its general location. The more challenging a mini-boss, the higher the reward you will get. Some quests will reward you with experience points, so be sure to take on as many as you can so that you can boost your level!
I was pleasantly surprised after playing this one for this Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition review. As the name suggests, Ara Fell on the Nintendo Switch is a revamped and improved take on the game. Since Ara Fell was originally developed in RPG Maker 2003, and, you know, it’s now 2020, the game has moved from that to a new take on the whole thing in Unity, featuring an expanded story, some extra particle effects here and there, more side-quests, specialization classes, gathering and crafting, and more. Because of this, Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition is the definitive version of the game. The game is out on Nintendo Switch for only $14.99, and it’s a must-have for fans of old-school JRPG from the SNES era.
This Ara Fell: Enhanced Edition review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by DANGEN Entertainment.