The Granstream Saga

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The Granstream Saga
The Granstream Saga Coverart.png
Developer(s) Shade
Arc Entertainment[1]
Publisher(s)
Composer(s) Kōhei Tanaka
Masanori Hikichi
Miyoko Takaoka
Takako Ochiai
Platform(s) PlayStation
Release
Genre(s) Action role-playing
Mode(s) Single-player

The Granstream Saga (グランストリーム伝記?, Guransutorīmu Denki) is an action role-playing game for the PlayStation. The game was developed by a team consisting of staff from the developer Quintet under the name Shade.

The Granstream Saga is lauded as one of the first fully polygonal RPGs, as opposed to using pre-rendered backgrounds. The game features anime-style cutscenes by Production I.G. It is also somewhat unusual in that the characters the player meets in the game are faceless.

Gameplay[edit]

Gameplay consists of top-down rpg-exploration and storytelling. When confronted or ambushed by an enemy, the camera angle shifts to a 45 degree angle, and combat gameplay begins. Combat gameplay consists of realtime battles, as opposed to the norm of turn based rpg combat. In realtime combat, you will utilize several weapons and abilities, such as swords, daggers, axes, warhammers, and various spells. When not in combat, you will spend a very large time exploring, gaining new weapons and armor, and conversing with the many characters of the different continents.

Plot[edit]

The game takes places after a short animated sequence where Eon and Valos cut a section of land off of Shilf. After discovering a young boy has disappeared, Valos performs locating magic to find the boy in an ancient cemetery. The spirit of the Wise Man speaks to Eon here, and asks him to find and help his daughter, Arcia, to use the Orb and recite the lifting verse to raise the land. Together they make it a goal to raise the other continents as well, and set off on a journey.

Music[edit]

The game's anime cutscenes feature music by composer Kohei Tanaka while the rest of the in-game music was composed by Quintet's sound staff including Masanori Hikichi, Miyoko Takaoka and Takako Ochiai.[3]

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 66%[4]
NinRetro 74%[5]
Review scores
Publication Score
EGM 28.5 / 40[6]
Game Informer 7.5 / 10[9]
GamePro 5 / 5[7]
Game Revolution B-[8]
GameSpot 6.7 / 10[10]
IGN 6 / 10[11]
Consoles + 90%[12]
Gamezilla 84%[13]
Next Level 80%[5]
Video Games 4/5 stars[5]

Upon release, GamePro scored it 5 out of 5, stating it is "one of the most enjoyable new role-playing games of the year," praising its "intriguing story line, evil enemies, and frantic fighting action." They considered the "voice-overs during most of the cut scenes" as "audio highlights" and concluded its blend of "classic RPG elements (puzzle solving, spells, saving mankind) with those of the action/fighter genre" make it "a fun, challenging adventure."[7]

The game holds an average score of 66% at GameRankings, based on an aggregate of 9 reviews.[4] THQ was the United States publisher, and their job with the English version's voice acting in the game has been criticized in retrospective critiques.[14] Hardcore Gaming 101 gave it a positive retrospective review, stating that, with "its immensely enjoyable combat system, excellently executed story, and very strong presentation, Granstream Saga is easily Quintet's finest work."[15]

References[edit]