Wednesday, May 09, 2018

"Earthlock" Review

With turn-based JRPGs haven fallen out of fashion, it's refreshing to see indie developers take some swings at reinventing the genre. Snow Castle Games' "Earthlock," which debuted with the subtitle "Festival of Magic" two years ago on other systems, seeks to capture the nostalgic yearning for older "Final Fantasy"-type games via the Switch.

Those looking for something lived-in and familiar will appreciate the game's bones. This is a standard save-the-realm quest, complete with a party you can use to quest for upgradable weapons and abilities as you venture down the linear path.

Speed and efficiency are not virtues that will get you far in "Earthlock." Exploration and experimentation are the order of the day, with an agrarian economy that tasks you to tend gardens to accumulate wealth and resources that will serve you well in battle.

While too slow for some tastes, "Earthlock" offers enough unique spins on well-worn material to appeal to JRPG fanatics and former fans who have let their tastes lapse over the years. The Switch continues to make a welcome home for unorthodox titles -- especially those with old-school flavor -- and that proves true here.
Publisher provided review code.

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