The world of gaming is now heavily saturated by games with excellent and beautiful graphics Fernz Gate comes along with a retro style graphics. The era of 2D pixelated graphics has just begun and Fernz Gate is a testament that not all games needs to have high quality graphics to be successful.
Fernz Gate tells the story of Alex who somehow wind up in an alternate world full of magic called Fernland. Alex comes from a world where magic didn’t exist so he was surprised to be in a world like Fernland. This is where the adventure begins for him as he starts manifesting powers. His main goal is to how he can get back to his own world and to do that he needs to defeat the Demon Lord that’s causing trouble in Fernland.
The story is actually quite unique and is not as generic as I thought it would be. It made me remember about animes with similar themes. And yet it delivers a story unique to this game. Unlike most games where you get a taste of how overpowered your character is. Alex starts at his weakest. However, as you get further into the game, Alex becomes stronger and gains companions along the way that have their own unique traits and abilities.
The characters actually feel very monotonous. They seem to have no interesting qualities and traits. And sometimes I don’t understand why they would act the way they do. It’s probably because you don’t really get an established idea of the character’s backgrounds and traits so sometimes their decisions may seem very perplexing at times. You do get to learn about the character later in the game. But I feel like it is very important to let you know what’s interesting about a character at the beginning of the game. Because it is in the beginning where you need to hook the gamer into pursuing to continue playing the game.
Gameplay wise you can’t really differentiate one character from another because they all learn the same spells. Yes they can learn different weapon skills but other than that everyone feels very interchangeable.
Gameplay is turn-based and there’s a timeline to let you know when your character will be moving or when the enemies will move. The game also has an auto-action function for when you feel like your character can take care of the enemies without breaking a sweat. Later in the game, they add buddies where you and your buddies must take a turn together. The companion starts the move and the main character follows up. They will also be able to make linked actions. It is very simple to understand and the game provides a tutorial when it introduces new mechanics.
Magic in this game can be learned by any of your character but in order to do so, you need to equip them with an elemental ring. Equipping them with an elemental ring will allow them to access that element’s magic. You will get to learn different types of spells whenever your element levels up. In the same way you can also level up your weapons and learn weapon skills.
The layout of the UI in the game feels like this should be a game that is made for mobile or handheld consoles. The game even has a shop where you can purchase weapons and buddies through a luck of the draw. This shop is separate from the shops that you see in town. The town shops use gold coins for purchase while the shop uses gems which you can purchase with real money. I’m not quite sure why someone would really go out of their way to purchase items with real money because you can also earn the gems in-game just by completing achievements. In any case, you have got to be really into the game to actually want to purchase with real money.
The graphics and design is pretty good and even if it’s in a 2D pixel style, the images in the UI use drawn art. I’m not quite sure but it looks like this game was made with an RPG Maker software which would explain why it looks the way it looks.
The background music for the game is okay but the opening screen actually is a little bit too loud for my liking so you might want to adjust the sound volume once you start the game for the first time. There seems to be only 3 sound files used for this game. The one for towns, the one for dungeons and the one for battle. These sounds will be the same wherever you go so it can get very stale very quickly. I wish they spent more time creating unique music for each place as that would have made a big difference.
Overall, Fernz Gate had the potential to be an interesting game but it’s bogged down by repeated background music, uninteresting characters which are interchangeable with each other. You would have to be very interested in the genre to want to play this game.
If you’d like to check out the game for yourself, you can buy it at the PlayStation store for $14.99