Friday, February 17, 2012
Retro Active: Golden Sun
The best way to describe Golden Sun to someone might be to draw comparisons to it, the Final Fantasy series and the Zelda series, but I think that does the game a slight disservice. Golden Sun isn't just some shallow copycat RPG. It did something I never thought possible, especially the first time I played it.
It made an RPG feel new and fresh.
I hadn't felt this was about a game since Chrono Trigger on the Super Nintendo. Golden Sun is a game that takes the traditional RPG and adds puzzle solving, character class strategy, and multi-class creations with the ease of an RPG you would see on something like the PS3 or Xbox 360. But unlike a lot of different RPG's released these days, Golden Sun remembers to keep the story in focus the entire time.
The writing might not be the best of a video game, but it goes a long way in terms of some RPG's. You play the role of the silent protagonist named Issac as you and your friends try to right the past, protect your friends and save the world. You are added with the use of Psynergy, a magical force that aids you in fighting monsters and solving puzzles on your quest through the game. Rock in your way? Form a giant hand and move it aside. Wanna get up a cliff? Use your powers to make vines grow to climb.
Also along for the ride are magical creatures called Djinn. There are four different kinds of Djinn to find, each with their own powers and abilities that can be used in battle. Use enough of them while fighting, and you will get the ability to summon giant mythical beings to deal massive amounts of damage. With many Djinn's to collect and powers and abilities to gain from using them and mixing around which characters use which Djinn, there are plenty of different classes to use and Psynergy to cast.
The biggest problem I have with Golden Sun is that while the story draws you in and keeps you interested, it ends with a cliffhanger and a long ass continuation pass-code to enter into Golden Sun 2 (The Lost Age).
All that aside, replaying Golden Sun after many years of beating it for the first time there is still loads of fun to be had and challenges to be found. I recommend picking it up, you can find it for around $10 or less online or in vintage game stores. You might as well pick up Golden Sun: The Lost Age as well, as you will want to keep going as soon as the first game ends.