Hexyz Force Review
When it comes to handheld RPGs, Sting Entertainment is the one revolutionary developer that gamers truly admire due to its past titles such as Riviera: The Promised Land. It is no lie that Sting Entertainment always creates fun and innovative titles but with its recently released Hexyz Force on the PSP, I may have to force myself to like it even though there are parts in the game that are really frustrating. With a plethora of decent RPGs that are now available on the PSP, does Hexyz Force really stand out from the competition?
Hexyz Force is a traditional turned-based role-playing game on the PSP. Similar to the unorthodox Sting’s Riviera: The Promised Land, Hexyz Force have its own fair share when it comes to its uniqueness. With its anime-based cutscenes and the new Ragnafact weapon system, does this game deserve to be played by hardcore RPG fans? Let’s find out in the HOTs and NOTs of Hexyz Force.
For the low price of $29.99, the player will get to play through not one, but two stories of the game. Upon starting a new game, a player will be prompted to choose one from the two available characters; Levant, a former Cerulean Knight, who has been labeled a traitor by the Empire of Rosenbaum after protecting the Halbs from being destroyed at the hand of the emperor, and Cecilia, a cleric who attempts to escape her duties from the Temple of Palfina. These two characters have their own unique storyline but as the player progresses through the game, both characters will meet and join each other at a certain point. Playing only one character is not recommended as there are two sides of the story in Hexyz Force. Both Levant and Cecilia are from two different worlds and have their own agenda. At the end, both characters will have the same goal. Each characters’ storyline will take an approximate of 25-30 hours depending on the pace of the player. Basically, a player can look forward to an estimated 60 hours of fun and exciting gameplay.
Hexyz Force is set in the world of Berge, a place where the Goddess of Creation, Norvia, spared the world while it’s facing an apocalyptic disaster. The Goddess descended from the heavens with the Holy Vessel, and used it to create life on the planet. The Holy Vessel that the Goddess brought along with her drew a spiritual energy called Force. These Holy Vessel are now being threatened by the God of Destruction known as Delgaia. By returning all of the Force back to the Holy Vessel, Delgaia will annihilate the world, Both Norvia and the Hexyz, the protector that the Goddess made to stand against Delgaia, sacrificed themselves in order to seal the power of darkness. The consequence of this act brought upon the Hour of Judgment, in which the world will have to decide whether they will follow the path of creation or destruction. After the long years that the Hexyz were gone in the world of Berge, they will rise once again in order to decide the fate of the world. Will you join towards the Creation or Destruction? It’s all in your hands.
For a handheld RPG, Hexyz Force has one of the best graphics on the PSP. Major plot events are shown in an anime style presentation with some impressive work from the voice actors. There are a lot of places that a player will be venturing and all of them look sharp and colorful on the PSP. When a character is conversing to another character, a character portrait will be shown. They are all hand drawn and emotions can be seen when they talk. The voice overs in the game is limited as the only time the player will get to hear the characters talking is during the anime cutscenes and while in battle. In terms of the music, Hexyz Force has a fast paced tune that offers a lot of variety. Both Cecilia and Levent have their own themes when it comes facing enemies.
Turn-Based Battle System
The battle system of Hexyz Force is nothing out of the ordinary as it’s the traditional battle system from yesteryear. Players will not have to worry about random encounters as the enemies are all on-screen. When it comes to fighting enemies, the player must remember two things; the Ragnafacts, a weapon that is owned by the Hexyz, and Spirifacts, a weapon that has limited durability and can be destroyed after a certain amount of use. Both of these weapons rely on RP, Ragna Points, which can be replenished by Defending during battle or finding a Healing Portal. This is one of the things that a player will have to rely the most when it comes to fighting enemies. It is recommended that a player must check the character status before entering a boss fight.
With the two story arcs that a player can play, expect more than one ending. In Hexyz Force, there are a total of four endings for both characters. The decisions that a player will make will have an impact to the ending. The path of destruction and creation are determined by how well the player interacts with the character and plays the game. At the end of each chapter, a Balance will be shown and a player can see as to which side the player is leaning towards to; the creation or destruction?
Visually, Hexyz Force looks phenomenal but when it comes to the dungeons, it gets repetitive with its bland designs. Most of the time, a player will spend an inordinate amount of time in dungeons fighting the same enemies. There are really no big towns in the game as every RPG gamer would expect. All of the buying of equipments are done through the in-game’s Fusion. By gathering materials that can be obtained by fighting enemies, and opening chests, a player can make a Spirifact and equipments that a character can use. This is where the dungeon crawler comes in; a player will not get a decent number of Spirifacts unless more than an hour is spent exploring the dungeons. This game is more a repetitive dungeon crawler than it is a real RPG game!
Rock, Paper, and Scissors Game…
Another feature that the player will have to look forward to is the understanding of the elemental properties while fighting enemies. Each of the attacks by the character have a specific alignment to either Crimson (Fire), Pearl (Holy), and Cerulean. Think of it as a Rock, Paper, and Scissors game; by knowing the elemental weaknesses of the three elements in the game, a player can deal a massive amount of damage to enemies. This feature has a vague explanation in-game but a player will not really pay attention to this as they will be preoccupied filling up the gauge for a special attack called Force Burst. Depending on the characters, each of them have their own unique special attacks. They deal massive amount of damage and the gauge can only be filled by fighting enemies.
Hexyz Force is an RPG that offers nothing special. Compared to the past titles of Sting Entertainment, Hexyz Force is my least favorite as the game has really nothing new to offer. I am utterly disappointed as to how the game doesn’t have that much of any towns to explore. As a hardcore RPG gamer, I love exploring towns, talking to towns people, and buying equipments without the hassle of gathering materials just to make the equipment for the characters, but this game offers nothing of this nature. Hexyz Force is not an RPG game that fans of the genre will actually love and remember in the years to come but it’s decent enough for anyone craving for an RPG until Persona 3 Portable comes out next month.[Editor's Note: Hexyz Force was reviewed on the PSP hardware. The game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.] Hexyz Force Review,