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  • Summary: Retro RPG that takes inspiration from SNES and PS1 classics. Action turn-based battle system with skill learning, slots for stat boosting, equipment crafting, monster catching, rank based Colosseum, and side quests. 30+ hour emotional story with adult-oriented themes and powerful originalRetro RPG that takes inspiration from SNES and PS1 classics. Action turn-based battle system with skill learning, slots for stat boosting, equipment crafting, monster catching, rank based Colosseum, and side quests. 30+ hour emotional story with adult-oriented themes and powerful original soundtrack along with another 30+ hours of sidequesting. Expand
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  1. Dec 26, 2017
    10
    Spoiler-Free Review of a Quality JRPG

    Forever Home is an incredibly well made throwback to the SNES days of RPGs. It feels like FF6
    Spoiler-Free Review of a Quality JRPG

    Forever Home is an incredibly well made throwback to the SNES days of RPGs. It feels like FF6 packaged with a faster battle system and an equally as adult story along with Earthbound-like humor and the quirkiness of Chrono Trigger. But that's a lot of comparisons, so let's break it down:

    Storyline
    The story starts off on a somber note. It puts you in the mood for a post-apocalyptic depressing world completely devoid of the color that makes us human. This scene lasts only a few minutes before you're thrown back into a completely different "timeline" with the polar opposite mood. Everything is suddenly happy, charming, and funny, and as a player you're genuinely happy to be briefly relieved of the war-torn world to which you just witnessed. The drastic mood switch works well as a story-starter and foreshadows a particular style Forever Home uses extremely well -- The developers constantly present you with something unexpected. This is difficult to write without some kind of spoilers, so I'll just say that the first couple hours of story are pretty basic cookie cutter JRPG mechanics but by the end of the game you're second-guessing everything you have seen. The ending in particular is so extremely well crafted that I expect to be replaying many times over the coming years to experience it again.

    Battle System
    It's very similar to FF6. Each character has stamina bars that charge up over time and then they can take actions which use up different amounts of stamina. There are combo moves where one character can use a particular skill and then another character can follow it up with a more powerful variation. There are specials called Prism Links that have button input mechanics much like Auron's moves in FFX. Every enemy in the game seems to have it's own special strategy. You will rarely, if ever, find yourself just spamming attack. I found many of the bosses difficult, but always fair. I died a couple times but never felt like it wasn't my fault. I always learned from my deaths and came up with better strategies. Each character has a different build of skills which allows for these varying strategies.

    Overall Experience
    NPCs in towns were hilarious as were many of the scenes throughout the game. I found myself full out belly-laughing on multiple occasions -- something I rarely do in games.

    Skill building was very fun. They use a system like FF7's materia to boost your stats and sometimes learn new skills. You can upgrade your "shards" to give higher stat boosts.

    Monsters are placed on the map so random encounters only happen on specific World Map spots. I usually don't mind random encounters, but Forever Home utilizes placed monsters expertly. Sometimes the dungeons were tough, but knowing the monsters were on the map made things easier to ration my resources.

    Really though, the reason I came here to write this review was because of the story. Maybe I'm still not quite in the right state-of-mind having just finished it and bawling my eyes out for 15 minutes, but I felt I needed to tell share the experience with others. The first half feels pretty basic, but the second half is so gripping and powerful that I couldn't turn it off. I think I played 5 hours straight on some days.

    Bottom line: If you're an old school Final Fantasy or Chrono Trigger fan you need to play this. It's got a very similar battle system with a similarly adult story, and the characters are well-written and funny. There's some tough puzzles, cool skills, and things are balanced really well.
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