Golden Sun – Reactions

I finished Golden Sun!

Well, and I actually wanted to start Golden Sun: The Lost Age just now, but while I was inputting the password to transfer my data, the game (or the NDS?) froze and crashed. =_= I was on the third page. =___= I was at the end of the third page. =________=

But that’s OK. I didn’t plan to fully dedicate myself to Golden Sun 2 just yet. Other games, probably more enjoyable games, are going to be released soon. Yes, this is harsh, and the crash is probably making me less charitable towards the game than I would otherwise be.

Buuuuuuuut Golden Sun is hardly a masterpiece. I don’t even mean the fact that it’s essentially just half a game. Really, it took me about 39 hours to beat Golden Sun, which is an absolutely acceptable length for a JRPG.

And I don’t mind that the story is generic. Generic videogame stories can easily be elevated by engaging, well-developed characters that drive the plot. Well, Golden Sun doesn’t do that. None of the characters left much of an impression. (Granted, the German translation is pretty bad, and probably made the dialogue even clunkier, which made it hard to get into it.)

But, oh, the dialogue. Every dialogue cutscene is TOO. LONG. The characters stand around and waste time prattling without actually saying anything important.

There was this one point in the game when they discussed at length that they could maybe go rescue Ivan’s master now, and then they decided not to do it, but to continue the mission. The entire scene didn’t give any indication where to go next, but waffled on and on about where not to go. This is simply bad writing. The game could have been improved by a decent editor.

Yes, yes. The music is nice. The graphics are beautiful. I like the dungeon riddles, I like the psynergy stuff and I like the djinns – in theory. In reality, the game never posed any challenges that would have forced me to properly experiment with the djinns. I never even unleashed one in battle. I still don’t know what that would do.

The moments that I found memorable were the desert, the stuff with the grumpy tree and the American Gladiators type tournament. (Am I showing my age?) Oh, and the rowing business on the ship. Brrr. That was awful and tedious.

Something amusing: Isaac’s sprite reminded me a lot of Will from Illusion of Time. So much that there were times when I wanted to take out my flute to use telekinesis. =_= I don’t even like Illusion of Time and have not played it in many, many years. Looks like I have internalized its gameplay, like muscle memory. Fascinating!

Anyway … I know that this is a beloved franchise, but for me the flaws are just too noticable and the game never really lives up to its potential. Maybe you had to be there?



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