As promised from our “First Impressions” of the classic remake of the Trials of Mana game, it’s time to dive into its gameplay, and story for this full review.
The Trials of Mana’s plot involves a giant tree, called the Mana tree, an infinite energy source for the entire world, as well as the current state of the world’s goddess. As time passes, the Mana Tree fades, and its fate is given to the hands of six heroes. Duran, Angela, Riesz, Hawkeye, Kevin, and Charlotte.
The heroes all have different backgrounds from different kingdoms, but will soon realize in their journey throughout the game, their destinies are intertwined. The game allows you to choose one main character, and two sub-characters to assist you in your journey in the Trials of Mana. It begins with the backstory of the main character, and as you progress, you’ll chance upon your chosen sub characters. Giving the impression that no matter which team you choose, this will not break the game’s storytelling.
As your team sets off on their journey, you will encounter monsters along the way, apart from the forces of evil bent on stopping you. Your trio will engage them in real-time combat, and their synergy can help ease up the struggle. The norm in team synergy revolves around a tank, DPS, and support, but the game doesn’t shy away on other play styles, so if you feel like creating a team of pure DPS, or otherwise, feel free to mix and match as you please. Battling with enemies as you move along earns you experience, and of course, this allows you to level up. Apart from the base stats that come with each level, you get to spend training points, which gives your characters additional stat boosts, and passive skills for further customization. If your level is high enough, and after reaching a certain point in the story, the Class Change will be made available. This allows your characters to become more powerful, and obtain new skills to fight tougher enemies in your journey. Your characters can choose a path of Light and Dark classes to match your taste. As with any JRPGs, you get to explore different cities, and kingdoms, that allow you to rest in an inn, buy equipment, stock up on some consumable items, and find some secrets.One of the few things that sets this game apart from the others is the Magic Pot beside the innkeeper to plant item seeds. With enough luck, and RNG blessings, the sprouting plant might drop some cool items and equipment. Don’t shy away from this plant, because this makes up quite a chunk of your Trials of Mana journey.
Armed with enough experience, and gear, you’ll soon reach the conclusion of the Trials of Mana. The ending, as well as the final boss, heavily relies on which main character you chose. Despite their intertwined destinies, the heroes have distinct perspectives, and different means to an end. This makes each story unique, and the game’s replayability a thing to look forward to. The game also offers a Post-Story feature, where your main character and the team, gets pointed into another direction, right before the fated battle. This is something you might want to check out as this gives you access to the game’s true End Game gears, as well as a new Class to change into.
Furthermore, the Trials of Mana Remake includes a New Game Plus feature, where you get to keep a few of the stuff you’ve acquired in your previous journey, as you tackle on a different character’s story.
The Trials of Mana Remake is an astonishing game, and one you’ll definitely expect from a Square Enix brand. It’s fun to play with, and has enough difficulty, and grind for everyone to enjoy. The story is enough to keep you interested in each character’s perspective, and the game’s New Game Plus feature adds more continuity to it, rather than having to start all the way from square one. The gameplay is exhilarating, with its fast-paced, real-time combat system, and its customization features that allows you to match your team with a playstyle you’re most comfortable with. Top it off with some secrets you’d expect from a JRPG, fused with some RNG-based goodness, makes this a unique experience for veteran, and new players alike. The story is light, with enough drama to keep you engaged, and something that isn’t heavily geared to a mature audience, which is a nice take, as kids can get to enjoy this masterpiece too. Overall, the Trials of Mana is definitely a game worth its price, as well as a solid remake of a classic RPG game. It provides a nostalgic, yet refreshing experience to fans of the classic, as well a fun, and unique experience to new players such as myself.