6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Final Fantasy meets Vandal Hearts in this Japanese RPG,
This review is from: Blue Dragon Plus DS [Nintendo DS] (Video Game)
I was pleasantly surprised when greeted with the game's opening and in-game cinematics and orchestrata, which were as grand in scope as anything the DS could muster.
Blue Dragon Plus is essentially as sequel to the Xbox 360 game Blue Dragon, in which our protagonist, a small boy named Shu who possesses the ability to control phantom shadows that yield to the boy's commands, defeated the tyrannical remnant of the ancients, Nene.
The world was then apparently split into two halves and has now begun to spew bizarre `cubes' from its core. The events of Blue Dragon Plus unfold a year after its 360 predecessor's and revolve around the foreboding harbinger of a three-headed dragon shadow emerging from one of these distant `cubes'. In this outing, however - in contrast to the Xbox version it seems - there are many more characters that have the ability to summon the blue shadows of which Shu is also an adept. Let (weird shadow) battle commence!
If you're the kind of person who is on the lookout for a new handheld RPG that will take up 30 hours of your time (or if you grew up watching Pokemon or perhaps the anime upon which this game is based), you will, I assume, be more than familiar with the Japanese knack for outlandish story-telling and immersive gaming experiences. BD+ is a standard issue RPG, with all of the genres inherent flaws and advantages, but with real-time strategy elements not dissimilar to Playstation classic Vandal Hearts, and more recently seen on the DS in such games as Final Fantasy XII, thrown in for good measure. For those unfamiliar with either of these titles, movements and actions are limited by the invisible grid formation mapped onto the levels, and rather than navigating environments freely, one mobilises their different factions or characters to different squares on the map. Obviously squad positioning commands are chiefly carried out by selecting your chosen party member with the stylus and then issuing tactical commands, which is all pretty good fun as you strategically exploit boss weaknesses and play role of field marshal.
Blue Dragon is a pleasant and instantly familiar RPG, boasting above-average presentation and style. It doesn't do enough to set itself apart from the pack though, and while undoubtedly a must for Blue Dragon fans and voracious RPG devourers alike, it may not appeal to the casual gamer audience.