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Review By: Joel Fajardo
Developer:   Matrix
Publisher:   Working Designs
# of Players:   1
Genre:   Action/RPG
ESRB:   Teen

What do you get when you take Working Designs, one of the most unreliable gaming companies, with Sony? What do you get when you have half of the Climax team to work on a new RPG for the system above all other systems? What do you get when you buy a game nicknamed the Zelda Killer in Japan? You get Alundra--one of the most spectacular action/RPGs seen in ages, on this side of the world. From music to graphics to gameplay, this game excels above most in every way imaginable. There's just nothing better than this game.

You take the role of a young elf, Alundra, who has been chosen to save the world from the evil forces, inhibiting the dreams of young people. You have the power to go into and out of the world of the unconscious by teleporting in the dreams of others. It is up to you, Alundra, the Releaser, to obtain the seven crests in order to defeat Melzahs, the one in control of dreams. Along the way, you meet the seven guardians and obtain their magic, who empower you. With extraordinary abilities and amazing abilities, it is only Alundra who can save the world.

Straight out, the graphics on Alundra are good, nothing more, nothing less. Rendered backgrounds and characters are the main source of artwork to be found. The landscape suffers from a high amount of the colors brown and green, but the characters are able to retain a distinct look from each other, some with swords, and others with books. Magic spells are nice and so are the seldom-to-be-seen special effects. With a beautiful intro, showing clips from the end of the game, and sequences of playing the game, Alundra brings an excellent showing of the minimum that is essential in all gaming experiences.

Impressively, the music on Alundra is striking. Musical breakthroughs are around every corner and detail is nowhere to be missed. Recorded as well as digitized sounds remain intact in every aspect. Being so deep, the music pushes you to think. Some melodies are powerful, making you wonder about life, while others are melancholy, giving you time to make penance. On the down aspect, tunes are repetitive. Slightly altered music is what is heard, throughout dreams. Every quest seldom reveals a radical beat, to an otherwise great game. Weapons sound differently, but when used and hit against an object, soft or hard; there is no sound to differentiate them. Boldly put, Alundra contains great sound.

Strikingly, the control is like no other to be seen. For an action RPG, it is rare to find such a gem in a hoard of rock, yet that is what we have here. Fluid motion and captive reality take place with the strike of a button. Every toss of a bomb, every shot of an arrow, allows you to perform as if you were there. Jumping across mountainous valleys and stone quarries is no problem, with the otherwise unusual controller. With outstanding gameplay and reality at your fingertips, Alundra is a breeze to play.

Every way imaginable, Alundra is a great game, yet the one problem lies in the concept. Alundra brings upon a Zeldaish kinda' game, quest and all. You travel, explore places, find item, and buy things, just like in Zelda. The one problem that lies in this is that it's not pulled off as well. Sure, I'd much rather play this than Zelda, but it's too much like the game I once loved on the SNES. This is just a small detail to bring forth on a great game.

Whether you like action games or RPGs, there is no way to dislike Alundra. Alundra brings you into a magical quest that is hard to be taken out of. You are captivated in this world, defeating the monsters that inhibit the dreams of people. You are Alundra himself, killing the enemies that stand in your path, leaving no way for evil to prevail. In a game so magical, and so in depth, you will never find a game as promising as Alundra.

If you want to know if the replay value on Alundra is high, all I can say is you betcha. Playing it once is not playing it at all because to play and realize the game is to play it many times.

Saying it straight out, you need this game. It's very rare to find a game as involving as Alundra in this day and age. Either way you see it, Alundra is a game to remember.


Overall: 9
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