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Shining Force EXA review

A basic, by-the-numbers Action RPG that looks okay, plays okay, and makes you feel more or less okay

Nonetheless, he obtains a magical sword called the Shining Force almost immediately, dragging the whole group into a battle between two kingdoms. On the plus side, you also get a magic castle to use as a home base - complete with a talking dog caretaker - and can use its machinery to teleport around the world, upgrade your stats, and buy new gear. And it's cool that the party members you aren't using are sometimes called to defend the castle, eventually unlocking different tactics for them touse- though those battles interrupt the main quest unceremoniously.

So, why haven't we mentioned the battle system yet? Well, there's just not much to it. Your physical combos come from stamping the X button three or four times, your charge attack comes by holding X at the end of the combo, and your special attack comes from holding X again after your charge attack. You can map one item and one spell to the square and triangle buttons as well, and cycle through them with the d-pad - which sounds good until you realize you have to take your thumb off the left stick to do so, which makes it tough to do while running away.

More Info

GenreRole Playing
DescriptionA basic, by-the-numbers Action RPG that looks okay, plays okay, and makes you feel more or less okay.
PlatformPS2
US censor ratingEveryone 10+
Release date20 March 2007 (US), (UK)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

I was the founding Executive Editor/Editor in Chief here at GR, charged with making sure we published great stories every day without burning down the building or getting sued. Which isn't nearly as easy as you might imagine. I don't work for GR any longer, but I still come here - why wouldn't I? It's awesome. I'm a fairly average person who has nursed an above average love of video games since I first played Pong just over 30 years ago. I entered the games journalism world as a freelancer and have since been on staff at the magazines Next Generation and PSM before coming over to GamesRadar. Outside of gaming, I also love music (especially classic metal and hard rock), my lovely wife, my pet pig Bacon, Japanese monster movies, and my dented, now dearly departed '89 Ranger pickup truck. I pray sincerely. I cheer for the Bears, Bulls, and White Sox. And behind Tyler Nagata, I am probably the GR staffer least likely to get arrested... again.
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