I was going to review Elminage Original for the site but after playing it for a bit, I just couldn’t take any more.
DO NOT BUY ELMINAGE ORIGINAL!
The game itself seems like a decent enough old-school dungeon crawler, but there are a few major problems that preventing me from enjoying it.
The translation is atrocious. It feels like they did a rough draft over about 80% of the game, didn’t bother to edit it, and then used machine translation to cover the rest. It’ll start sentences in the middle of words from the previous sentence. In the same menu, some of the choices will be capitalized, some will have periods, and some will not. Seriously, I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen a translation this bad; maybe the 8-bit era?
Menus & controls are clunky & unintuitive. To talk to stuff in dungeons, you press the Triangle button (what game does that?!). Items & even gold is distributed on a character basis so there’s lot of transferring stuff between characters before you can use it.
Very little in the way of tutorials or guidance. For example, there are several classes and races to choose from and the only way to figure out what they do and their strengths & weaknesses is through trial and error.
It’s REALLY old school. Items all need to be appraised, LVs can only be gained at the inn, D&D style AC, etc.
If it wasn’t for the translation, then I could see fighting past the interface issues if you really like really old-school RPGs with lots of classes & equipment, but this kind of release is completely unacceptable. I’ve played games with problematic translations before, but a translation this bad almost makes the game unplayable and certainly makes it unenjoyable. Do not buy Elminage Original! If you want a dungeon crawler RPG on your PSP, Unchained Blades is rather good & Class of Heroes 2 looks promising (should be out early this year). And if you’ve got a DS or 3DS, you’ve got other good options like the Etrian Odyssey series & Shin Megami series.