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Romancing SaGa -Minstrel Song – Remastered Review :: Ode to a Bygone Era

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Romancing SaGa -Minstrel Song- Remastered

Romancing Saga is a JRPG classic released back in 1992 by Square. Being the fourth major installment in the Saga series, it has received multiple remakes and remasters. From the likes of Super-Famicom and PlayStation 2 to PlayStation 5 and PC, this classic of the bygone era has covered more ground than the likes of Skyrim and Witcher have in recent years.

Romancing SaGa -Minstrel Song-Remastered is the remaster of the PS2 remake of the original and was released on PlayStation 4 and 5, Nintendo Switch, Steam, and mobile on December 1st, 2022.

Back to the Basics

Set in a fantasy world where kingdoms are vying for power and control, the game’s political landscape is complex and well-written. Players take on the role of a leader of a kingdom and must navigate through the various political machinations and alliances to ultimately save the world from a powerful enemy. The game’s characters are also well-written and have their own unique personalities and motivations, which adds depth to the story and makes it easy to become invested in their fate. 

However, the game does have its drawbacks. At times, the pacing can feel slow, and the open-world aspect of the game can be overwhelming, with too many side quests and optional content. This can make it difficult to know where to focus your attention and what is actually important to the main story. The localization of the game also left something to be desired, with some awkward phrasing and poor translation errors that have remained even after multiple re-releases. 

Let the Battles begin!

One of the things that stood out to me about Minstrel Song was its unique battle system. Players are able to control multiple characters and strategically switch between them during battle. This added a new level of depth to the typical RPG battle system and kept things interesting. The battle system also allows players to use different characters’ special abilities and weapons to exploit the enemy’s weaknesses, which adds an extra layer of strategy to the gameplay.

The battle system’s depth is not always effectively utilized by the game’s difficulty, some battles can be grindy and tedious, making the experience less enjoyable. It can also be frustrating to encounter random battles in some areas, which can disrupt the flow of the game. Overall, it has all quirks that one can hate about JRPGs in particular.

A few missed Opportunities

The remastered graphics in the game are also a nice touch, giving it a more polished look and feel. The game’s world is beautifully rendered, with vibrant colors and detailed environments that make it a pleasure to explore. The game’s music also deserves a mention, it is a great fit for the game’s atmosphere, and it helps to enhance the overall experience.

On the downside, while it may be appealing to the nostalgic crowds, the newbies won’t be so cozy which the game’s dated visuals that have aged like milk. It may look great on mobile devices but as for PC and modern consoles the animations may seem to be choppy, and texture models lack the complexity that is needed by the standards of modern remasters.

Real Talk

Overall, Romancing Saga: Minstrel Song Remastered still remains a solid JRPG classic with a unique battle system, an intriguing story, and a great art style. However, it also suffers from quite-a-few pacing issues and lackluster localization. The game’s open-world aspect can be overwhelming, and the battle system’s depth is not always effectively utilized by the game’s difficulty. While it is a true classic in its own right, the new generation of players may find it lacking due to its aged visuals and choppy animations. As for the series veterans, it is a love letter to the bygone era.

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