14 Jul, 2023
Magic and MachinesMagic and Machines is reminiscent of early JRPGs like the first few Final Fantasy and Phantasy Star games but deviates from the genre norms with quality-of-life additions and modern enhancements that make it a quick and fulfilling adventure.
The story begins at our hometown on the day that Blaer, one of the six main characters, starts his new job working on the machines that have been built to utilize the power of magic. Unfortunately, the machines malfunction and kill their creator, which kicks off a chain of catastrophic events. We take over and truly start our journey a few years later.
What makes Magic and Machines better than your standard RPG Maker-esque game is its design. From dungeons and turn-based battles to menus and towns, everything is neatly designed, making for a brief but polished gameplay experience. Completing the game and defeating a few optional bosses took me just a few hours.
Though Magic and Machines doesn’t reinvent the jRPG battle system, its random battles and neat elements-based magic system keep things interesting throughout the entire game. For example, many of the elemental magic attacks also debuff enemies.
And unlike some games, we don’t have to waste hours grinding XP or resources, as repeatable battles with tough enemies reward us with plenty of XP. This makes the game ideal for those who have felt too overwhelmed by larger RPGs in the past.
The biggest downside is that although the menu controls are great, controlling our character takes a bit to get used to. I often struggled to push blocks on the many puzzles.
Magic and Machines is a $1.99 premium game and an easy recommendation for fans of JRPGs.
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