Gamersledge Review: Rainbow Moon (PS4)
On February 16th, 2016 Rainbow Moon was released to the PS4 ($14.99 or $7.50 if you bought the game on a previous PS system) as a port from the PS3 (and Vita). Rainbow Moon is a download only title and hybrid of the RPG and SRPG genres. It was developed by SideQuest Studios, and published by eastasiasoft. As always we will be reviewing it based off of the game’s gameplay, story, and presentation.
At the beginning of the game you get a choice of two difficulties: Normal or Hard. There is quite a jump between the two from what I experienced. Then you get a set of four choices. These four choices give you varying levels of items/gear/support to start out with. The options range from receiving no items or equipment, except for a sword, to all the items and a full set of armor. I selected the Normal difficulty (which has provided a good challenge) and the adventuresome starter package (only given a sword) which is said to have a hidden benefit (I haven’t figured out what that is yet).
The battle system of Rainbow Moon is a turn based strategy combat system. There are two types of encounters in this game, the first being coming into contact with an enemy’s overworld sprite. The other being random encounters that appear in a pop up, and you can choose whether you want to initiate the battle or not. This enables you to avoid or join a battle as desired. The turn order is determined by the character or monster’s speed stat. Once the characters reach certain levels they gain what is called a sub turn in which allows the character another action for its turn. For example, a character that has three sub turns could attack, heal, and defend all in one turn. A character with only one sub turn could only attack, or only heal, or only defend on their turn.
The characters also have skills which require the character to use MP (magic points) to perform stronger attacks. Skills are bought at stores using the world’s currency, Rainbow coins. All combat skills are character specific (each character maps to a different class type) while “support” skills can be learned by any character. Progressing the story the game unlocks new skills for you to buy, which are magically available at any store in the game simultaneously. It should be noted at this point that Rainbow Coins can be purchased from the PlayStation store, F2P style if you don’t feel like grinding out the cash.
This game (like many S/RPGs) includes a weapons circle where different weapons do bonus or reduced damage depending on what weapon combatants are using. The experience system is also interesting. For each monster the character defeats they gain a number of Rainbow Pearls in addition to the experience gained. The Rainbow Pearls can then be traded in at a Savant (found all over in the game, mainly towns and dungeons) to increase the characters stats. Rainbow Pearls can ALSO be purchased in the PlayStation Store, if you choose to spend rather than grind.
Rainbow Moon is an SRPG, but it leaves much to be desired in story. The game primarily consists of a multitude of collection missions, which require you to go and fight specific monsters to collect items, or to delve into a dungeon and collect the item protected by a powerful monster. This can make the game feel a bit repetitive. This sense of repetition is magnified by the large amount of grinding one has to complete in order to advance to the next area (without being torn to shreds or spending your real world coin). This makes it a very slow and drug out game, similar to older RPGs with a nice SRPG combat system. I do like the diverse and creative protagonist cast. As the story has been a common complaint against the game, SideQuest Studios is planning on releasing another game called Rainbow Skies (coming to PS3, PSV and PS4 in the second half of 2016).
Rainbow Moon uses an isometric, or three quarters view. This is used for both combat and overworld navigation. Having an open overworld to explore is a nice differentiator from most other SRPG games. The graphics are similar to a late 16-bit or early 32-bit 3D animation style. Despite being ported to the PS4 there seems to be little to no graphic changes from the PS3 version of the game. The game has an interesting sound track that pairs very well with the graphics and game play.
Overall I think that the game is very well composed and designed (despite its lack of story). The rating I’m going to give this game is a 7 out of 10 Rainbow Coins. Overall I would recommend this to anyone who has the patience (or money) to level up their characters and enjoys S/RPGs.
+ Good cast
+ Good music
+ Nice Battle System
– Lacks story
– Grind heavy
Overall a solid S/RPG, but lacks compelling story.