review

Dawn of Mana

Dawn of Mana Cover Art

Soundbite:

The latest iteration of the classic World of Mana series brings with it the inclusion of a new physics engine that gives Dawn of Mana a unique and challenging experience that breathes new life into the Square Enix franchise.

Premise:

Keldy and Ritzia, while out playing with their rabit Buju, come across the invading army of King Stroud of Lomaria. Rushing home, they discover their village in turmoil and the villagers captured. Seeking to free their friends and family, they try to find the sacred beast that is supposed to guard the island of Illusia, their home. While deep inside the area where the sacred beast is supposed to live they discover a sealed doorway that reacts when Keldy approaches it. The Mana Tree, guardian of the sealed door to Mavolia, then imparts to Keldy a seed that can transforms his arm into a sword or extend out to act like a whip. When Kelday and Ritzia try to leave, Ritzia is drawn in by a black light and faints. King Stroud, after finishing capturing all the villagers now including Keldy and Ritzia, reveals his plan to open the door to Mavolia. Using Ritzia as leverage to force the villagers to follow his orders Stroud heads out to find the key to unlocking the door to Mavolia. Keldy must then fight his way across the wildness and through Stroud’s soldiers to try to save his land, village and friend.

Notes:

  • The story is told by the elemental spirits who are retelling a tale of the past.
  • The physics engine allows for interaction with many environmental objects which can be both helpful and very annoying.
  • Plays more like an action/adventure game with limited RPG elements, similar to other Mana games.

Grade:

Fans of previous Mana games should certainly check this game out along with those gamers who like adventure games with limited role playing elements. Definitely worth a buy or rent. 7/10