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Pandora's Tower - Special Edition (Wii)
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- Platform: Nintendo Wii
- BBFC Rating: Suitable for 12 years and over. Not for sale to persons under age 12. By placing an order for this product, you declare that you are 12 years of age or over.
- Media: Video Game
- Item Quantity: 1
Break a curse that threatens to transform a beloved friend into a horrific beast in the stylish, dark and captivating Pandora’s Tower for Wii.
Pandora’s Tower blends RPG elements with action-packed gameplay as you assume the role of Aeron, an Athosian soldier facing a deeply personal and emotionally charged mission. With your friend, Elena, bound to a grave fate that is causing her to mutate into a demonic abomination, you’ll feel the pressure of time and the rush of accomplishment as you take up the fight to eradicate the spreading evil that has gripped her. To add to the drama of this melancholic and unconventional adventure, it is only by consuming the remains of monsters Aeron has slain that the cruel curse binding Elena can be reversed.
The world of Pandora’s Tower features 13 gruelling environments to tackle, each one based within a tower structure, and each one home to grim monsters whose flesh takes on a macabre significance in the game’s engrossing plotline. Enemies can be attacked in two ways – with a bladed weapon offering hard-hitting results up close, or with a magical chain possessing uses that extend far beyond overcoming opponents. Aimed by pointing the Wii Remote at the screen, the Oraclos Chain can be used to latch onto elements of the environment, allowing the player to reach new heights, activate levers or pull down parts of their surroundings. The chain also acts as the ultimate restraint when tackling monsters, allowing for innovative combat techniques as you engage in fast and furious real-time battles.
Using his sword and the magical Oraclos Chain, Aeron must defeat the creatures that lurk in the tower and harvest their meat to feed to Elena. Only by eating all of the “master flesh”, harvested from the largest monsters within each tower, will Elena be fully cured of the curse and free from its monstrous grip.
As you progress, the weight of Elena’s predicament will spur you on, her physical appearance becoming more grotesque the longer it takes you to overcome each tower. Minutes matter as you race to bring her the remains of your foes, an on-screen indicator changing colour to warn you of how advanced the mutation is becoming in your absence. When you’re with Elena, your interactions will determine the strength of your overall relationship, a bond which could vary dramatically and will result in the game coming to one of numerous alternate endings.
Items collected throughout your journey can be traded with Mavda, a mysterious merchant carrying a strange skeletal creature on her back, who comes to your aid. With her, you can upgrade your weapons and even create new items by combining two or more items that you have found on your journey. The items that you have discovered while exploring the towers can be given to Elena as gifts to increase your affinity or be used help you on your quest to battle the 13 masters.
Enter the shadowy world of Pandora’s Tower on Wii for a novel adventure experience that demands your devotion as a player. As time ticks away, the fate of your friend grows all the more unthinkable and the effects of evil stare you in the face even as you fight to suppress them. Do you have the heart for a fight that is guaranteed to get personal?
- Experience a dark and original RPG adventure, where you must break a curse that threatens to transform your friend into a demonic beast.
- Explore and survive 13 towers, defeating enemies and traversing your environment with a combination of swordplay and by using a magical chain that boasts multiple uses.
- Feel the weight of a dynamic relationship in which your actions have a direct visible effect on your friend, Elena. Race against time to save her.
In celebration of communication with loved ones, a set of 5 specially themed e-card images were created. Featuring Aeron, Elena, Mavda and some key pieces of artwork from the game, this unique set of images can be shared with your loved ones - although user discretion is advised and it may be a good idea to ensure that the recipient already knows a thing or two about the concept of the game...
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The aforementioned towers are guarded by enemies and puzzles, in order to reach the final room of each tower the plucky hero must first unseal the rooms containing the dangerous creatures known as the masters. This is achieved by destroying a handful of pedestals which ground the chains barring entrance to the final room of a tower. As you begin scaling the towers you will notice two things, the first is that each tower corresponds to an element a bit like The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of time's fire temple, water temple, forest temple etc. This is great for the first five towers as it keeps things fresh both in terms of art direction and game mechanics, the second half of the game isn't quite so interesting due to tower 6 to 10 repeating the themes of 1 to 5. Nobody really wants to go through two water temples. The second thing you will notice about the towers is that you are not going to manage to get through them in 30-40 minutes, most will require at least two trips back to the observatory. This could have easily made the whole experience a lot more tedious, to the developers credit though they have done an amazing job making backtracking bearable. Each tower has shortcuts you can open up in the form of unlocking barricaded doors and dropping down ladders, which make traversing to the top of each tower a quick and painless task. Also included is an item that instantaneously transports you back to the observatory, these are particularly useful in getting the most out of your time in the towers.
The unique concept of having to come back at regular intervals to prevent the damsel in distress from mutating horrifically is quite gripping. On the one hand you want to fully explore the Towers and discover the mysteries behind them but on the other you don't want to watch Elena Gag as she eats raw oozing purple monster flesh. There aren't too many games that make you feel guilty for wanting to explore every nook and cranny. One of the thing the game does really well is make you want to protect Elena and get back before the curse takes hold. There's a kind of morbid curiosity at the start of the game where you want to see what happens when you leave it to the last minute to get back to Elena. Once you've watched that scene once, you will never want to see it again, probably the darkest thing you will ever see in a Nintendo published game.
When you eventually reach one of the towers masters you will immediately be reminded of the colossi from Team Ico's epic shadow of the colossus, in the sense that each of the boss battles feels like a puzzle rather than a challenge of your reflexes or combat proficiency. It feels a lot more brain over brawn. The idea behind these master battles is to hook onto the glowing weak point with the oraclos chain and perform some abrupt, unwanted keyhole surgery. The difficulty comes from trying to figure out how to reveal the masters weak point and get off a fully charged yank. Generally if you impale something with a metal spike, they are not likely to sit there and wait for you to remove their aorta. So before going for their Achilles heel you will need to stun them, figuring out how to stun them is the important bit. It's a really interesting dynamic combined with the constantly draining hourglass, the pressure doesn't come from beating the boss but beating the boss in a timely fashion so as not to see Elena horribly deformed.
The main focus of the combat is not the sword but the chain. Before the game was released, people seemed to believe Pandora's Tower was a Devil May Cry clone. That's a pretty massive misconception, the only thing Pandora's Tower has in common with Devil May Cry is fixed camera angles, which are surprisingly not all that intrusive. The key to success in combat is making good use of the oraclos chain, be it as a projectile, a whip or as a tool for blinding, tripping, throwing, spinning or tethering an enemy. Motion controls are used, but before you grumble they're used well and in intelligent ways. If you're one of those strange people who think finding joy in pulling a vital organ out of an enemy with a flick of the wrist runs the risk of turning you into a soccer mom over night, classic controller support is available. The game play revolves around pointing at enemies though so using the classic controller seems counterproductive. Defeating enemies efficiently comes down to using the chain to hinder enemies and leave them open to sword, swords or scythes.
Speaking of the weapons there is an upgrade system in place, the weapons can be upgraded by collecting certain items in the tower. In order to get each weapon to its full potential, you will need to visit specific towers at a certain time of day, what time and which tower can be discovered by listening to the not so cryptic hints of a certain old woman. With each upgrade a weapon receives the damage it does increases, every 3rd upgrade the weapon unlocks a new charge attack. Charge attacks allow for extended combos that deal a lot of damage. The problem with the level up system and upgrading weapons is that it really doesn't impact the game that much. You don't get the sense that you need to do it. It just makes battles slightly easier and look a little bit more stylish.
Visually Pandora's Tower isn't gonna be winning any awards, that's not to say it looks bad it just doesn't stand out, the towers look good but they're not exactly pushing the hardware to its limits. It does score points for its monster design especially the masters and Elena's varying degrees of mutation. The artwork is also top of the line, so good in fact I wholeheartedly recommend getting the collectors edition for the art book and metal case. The music is good but can get a little repetitive towards the end because they seem to use the same or a similar track in each tower, the highlight of the soundtrack is easily the orchestrated version of Dies Irae. The translation and voice acting is really well done especially Mavda, it would have been nice if the original language track had been included but the performance by the actors is so good I don't think I would have ever used it.
Pandora's Tower like all good RPGs has a new game plus, aside from the usual start over and keep all your stuff, it actually gives you a reason to play back through. New gifts are added which means extra scenes with Elena, new reports are added which means more exposition, new rooms in the towers are unlocked so you can find rare items as well as a new weapon. Not to mention the game has 5 endings, all of which are significantly different and worth seeing. The only issue with new game plus is the lack of difficulty, because the chain carries with it the upgrades from your first play through, the first four or so bosses can be beaten in one hit. It would have been the icing on an already delicious cake if boss patterns and health had seen a boost the second time around. It's a minor quibble considering how well laid out it is, for example unlike the majority of games with new game+ Pandora's Tower allows you to skip to various different parts in the story, this is a godsend for a game that features multiple endings, as let's face it who wants to replay the same game 5 times in a row, that's 10 water temples.
The story is Ganbarions ace in the hole, as it slowly unravels via reports found in the towers and through the dreams Elena begins to have, you start to question whether everything and everyone is what it seems. There's also a mechanic in the game where you can give Elena gifts to raise her spirits and affinity with Aeron, some of these gifts will result in extra dialogue that often reveals more about their relationship and what happened in the past. It's a nice touch which encourages you to replay the game and buy all the gift items, how many trinkets you give to Elena and how fast you return from a dungeon will also affect which ending you get. The combination of the mystery that is gradually being revealed to you and the many different interactions with Elena, make for some really effective and subtle story progression. The endings themselves are significantly different depending on what you do throughout the game. It's not just a case of max out your affinity and you get the best ending, the other endings are well thought out and some might argue more interesting than the `perfect' ending.
These days every JRPG seems to feature a group of seven unlikely heroes saving the world from a generic bad guy on a power trip, it's refreshing to see a developer put some thought and originality into a game's story. The game play is simple but fun, it's well presented, the bosses are great and the towers are well designed. It's not perfect by any means but it is memorable, and I'd take one flawed game with spirit over 50 games that are more of the same but a little better. If you own a Wii and enjoy games like Shadow of the Colossus, Metroid Prime, Castlevania or if you just enjoy an interesting story, check it out.
The control scheme is very strange and sometimes I press the wrong button, and the camera not always works well. Game progress is monotone, and some bosses are really annoying (I almost gave up with one of them).
So, why I rate it with four stars? Because despite all of that, I still enjoyed it, and that means something. The level design is great and you feel compelled to try again and again. I recommend it if you have patience and like challenging games that borders on the annoying. It's not the kind of game I usually like, but I didn't know "Pandora's Tower" was like that, so I warn you.
I absolutely loved the game, from the silent but deadly Aeron to the final boss, though some of the towers (especially the water ones) were very irritating, and some of the littler guys can be annoying, especially when your trying to get back to a monster Elena. At first you'd think that the whole pressure thing would be annoying, but actually it really involves you in the game and you end up wanting to help Elena, and can see things from her point of view. Especially when you've left it a little long and you go back to the observatory and she's trying to clean up her purple goo on the floor, and apologising. You also feel for Aeron, and i think his lack of opinionated speech means that you can 'be' him and make him who you want, without feeling pressurised to choose an option (you know, replying to elena) that you think he would say. he's a clean slate and you can make him who you want!
All in all a gripping game, and the fact you can choose your own ending is a plus too. I truly recommend it, for players who love a bit of romance (gruesome or other wise) and players who want to fight!
The package is adapt to the item ad arrived in 7 days.
Great solo RPG game.Is kinda repetitive in some point, but definetly is a good game that capable of passing a few dozen of hours of fun. Altrough the graphics are not exceptional, the story is beatifull and , from the beginning, it help to identify with Aeron (the male protagonist) and to become attached to Elena (the female character). At least, but not at last, the collection edition is a "must have" at that price.
Racommended to all who love the RPG games.
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