Faery: Legends of Avalon - PS3 Review
Downloadable titles have come a long way in a few short years. While the first games were pretty basic titles we now see fully-realised action and RPG's released on a quite regular basis. Developed by Spider Studios Faery: Legends of Avalon has just been released in the PlayStation Store and we were given the chance to review the title...
|Graphics in Faery are fairly good.|
Faery: Legends of Avalon sees you playing the hero (who you can name and customise to look as you wish) and your task is to discover why the world of Avalon is dying and save the kingdom from certain disappearance. Your choices will shape the story, you will develop your character, his abilities and special powers, as well as his equipment through the victorious battles and accomplished quests. In order to overcome all those dangers, you will have to gain power and experience, but also to assure the support of friendly companions you will meet through your journey. All companions have their specificities, their strengths and weaknesses, but also their own characters.
One of the biggest strengths of this game is the customisation. From the opening moments you will create your character by inputting their name, and altering their look to your liking. It's a pretty nice process, and a little more detailed than we expected. After creating your character you'll enter Avalon, the main world, where you will be introduced to your abilities such as flying and attacking, meeting the King and starting on your quest to meet a myriad of characters and completing tasks. As you meet the various characters you will enter dialogue with them with the game using a dialogue wheel to offer choices for your responses.
|Travelling around the pirate ship.|
Faery has several rather interesting worlds to explore including the previously mentioned Avalon which acts as the main world, as well as the Flying Dutchman, City of Mirage and Yggdrasil. Each of these worlds has very distinct looks from a ghost ship to a large tree world and a city. As you progress through the levels you won't be on your own as you will have two companions with you, with these characters being selectable from an ever increasing group of friends as you progress.
Battles are fairly simplistic for anyone that has played a turn based RPG but it offers a pretty laid-back approach to the genre as you select your method of attack, or the items you wish to use before selecting your target(s). It's nothing to write home about but works well enough with the main annoyance being if you defeat someone on your first attack then your subsequent attacks lined up don't move onto the next enemy. It must be said that as you travel around the lands, or complete quests, you will find and be given items to enhance your powers, as well as skill points to assign to learning new spells which means you can build your character to match your game style.
|Taking on some mummies in Faery.|
So what about the issues we have with the game? Well despite the claims that this "is a big role playing game" we can assure you that this is no Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest with the game being completed in around 8-10 hours if you complete the majority of the side-quests and for $AU23.95 it's value is a little questionable. It must be said that the ending is pretty abrupt too. Another issue we had with the game was the lack of clarity in some of the mission objectives. "Go talk to person X" is fine, but if you don't know where they are you may get a bit lost - we certainly had that issue on the Pirate Ship level and had to bump up the brightness on our TV to see where we were going. Finally, perhaps it says something about a game when there are spelling errors in the dialogue!
Graphically Faery is actually a pretty impressive game, and certainly exceed what I expected from it. Some of the world’s look pretty nice and, most impressively, even when flying around the worlds at speed the frame rate holds up very well indeed. The characters, be they friend of foe, are well designed and the customisation of the main character is decent enough.
|Character design is fairly impressive.|
In terms of the visual negatives we've already mentioned that those set on the pirate ship is a bit too dark. Also, some of the textures are a little plain, and with only four worlds on offer, and fairly small ones at that, there isn't a great deal of variety visually. Cut-scenes, forget about them, they are characters appearing on screen.
Ever since the PlayStation One hit retail developers have near unlimited space for audio in their games, and it's a rare title that doesn't make use of that space. While Faery is a downloadable title it's meager size (at 560MB or so) makes you wonder why the developers chose not to consume a little more space and include voice acting throughout the game. It would have added much more personality and, let's face it, having to read so much text just feels dated. While that's a negative the music and effects are pretty decent and they help the game, sonically at least, push along.
|Using the Storm magic!|
Faery: Legends of Avalon is an average game that will provide a bit of entertainment but ultimately lacks any real pizazz to make it stand out in any categories. Not having voiceovers in a game these days is very jarring - it's not like there are thousands of lines of dialogue. The visuals are pretty nice though and you could consider this a "RPG-lite" for youngsters perhaps.
Review By: Dave Warner
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|GRAPHICS||Some aspects are quite gorgeous, others are a bit lacking.||70%|
|SOUND||No speech is quite jarring, and disappointing, but music and effects are adequate.||48%|
|GAMEPLAY||This is pretty much a "go here, do this" type game with some light RPG styled elements.||67%|
|VALUE||It's a bit repetitive, a little under-developed, and a bit over priced.||60%|
|OVERALL||Faery: Legends of Avalon isn't your big-budget triple-A title and indeed it's probably a bit overpriced. Still younger gamers just getting into RPG's may enjoy this title, but it's a hard one to recommend.||65%|